Autumn Farewell

It’s December 5th and the snow is falling softly this morning. It is really, really cold. Winter is upon us. It’s time for cozy fireside reading, tea sipping, and fuzzy blankets. I truly love this time of year. But before I dive headlong into winter, I wanted to post some shots that encapsulated my autumn season in New England. I’m happy to report that most of the items on my fall fun to-do list were completed! I Still didn’t climb Mount Monadnock though… I will have to add that to my spring fun to-do list 🙂

Processed with Snapseed.A lot of my favorite foliage shots were taken Columbus Day weekend, when the leaves are usually at their peak in New Hampshire. These lovely trees were found on the Monadnock Art Tour, which happens the second weekend of October each year. If you’ve never done the tour, which is self guided through the little villages around Mount Monadnock, put it on your calendar for next year! The foliage alone makes it worth the drive, never mind the open art studios you get to peak into.img_4304img_4291img_4243Gourds, apple orchards, and milkweed. Doesn’t get much more autumn-y than that! We picked apples this year at McCleod orchards in Milford, NH this year on a wonderfully overcast day, a bit gloomy feeling, yet still with warm undercurrents on the breeze. The apples were smaller this year, because of a frost in the spring, but we were able to get enough to make a big batch of crockpot apple butter, apple sauce, and an apple pie – yum! Apple baking day (more like weekend) is always a treat.img_4423

I also made it to a corn maze! And we found one that stayed open after dark! Making it all the more creepy-fun. We went to the 14 acre one at Elwood Orchards in Londonderry, NH. It took us over an hour to get out of, but  we made it! Another item on my fall fun to-do list was to plant bulbs, and plant I did! Daffodils, Narcissus, Crocus, Tulip, and tons of garlic! It will be exciting to see what comes up this spring after the bulbs’ long winter sleep under the soil and snow.img_4603img_4464Autumn, so brilliant and so fleeting. I like how you have to act on your autumn-y impulses (corn maze! pumpkin spice! knitting!) quickly before the season is gone. It’s the time of year that really reminds us to pause and take in the beauty that is all around. Or to gather with friends and family over a pot of soup. Or to stay in and read. To light some candles and settle in.

Farewell, autumn. You were lovely.

Sheep & Wool Festival

We went on up to Tunbridge, Vermont last weekend for the annual Sheep & Wool Festival. Nestled in a lovely green valley in the quaint village of Tunbridge, the festival is a fiber lovers’ paradise. Ethan and I were most interested in the sheepdog demonstration and the sheep shearing and we arrived in time to see both. We took a very long, meandering route up north, through the White Mountains of New Hampshire first and then cut over on route 302 to Vermont. Taking the long way was worth it. The fall foliage is beautiful up north, and driving through all of the small New Hampshire and Vermont towns was glorious. We especially loved the little town of Sugar Hill, New Hampshire where the following photo was taken. Sugar Hill definitely deserves further exploration. I will be going back up there again, and will surely do a more in-depth post on the area.
Processed with Snapseed.But anyways, back to the sheep and wool festival! I will admit, I was slightly disappointed in the festival. That being said, I think a large part of that feeling is due to the fact I am not  much of a knitter anymore. I realized last year that I had to give up a few hobbies or else I would never be able to focus on anything or accomplish anything. So, I still knit Ethan his one hat a year come November, but that is pretty much it. I’ve given up my aspirations of knitting sweaters and other complicated things that I never could wrap my mind around anyways (reading patterns, nope! haha) But the festival was still enjoyable and we had a good wander around for a couple hours, and that was really all the time it took to see everything and watch the two demonstrations- herding and shearing, which were interesting and worth seeing..
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The goat barn was fun to go through, there were so many different varieties. I also liked seeing all of the various vendors. The handmade tapestries were among my favorite things. The flowers around the barns were beautiful as well.

The sheep and wool festival is held at the beginning of October every year. I would go again simply to enjoy the foliage on the drive up there. And next time I may have to pick up some of this gorgeous yarn… Processed with Snapseed.Processed with Snapseed.Processed with Snapseed.

winter activities in progress

Sometimes it feels like I have too many interests. Too many books to read. Too many projects. But on a snowy afternoon like this, I love having all these little odds and ends to choose from:

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The green scarf is for Ethan. It’s my “sampler” scarf that Tammy at my work is helping me with. She taught me to purl, which has opened up a variety of new patterns and designs for my knitting. The embroidery is a pattern from an old Dutch sampler, I’m doing it in all one color to get the hang of it, but hopefully more colorful embroidery will happen in the future. Although, I’m loving the red on ivory contrast, I can thank @soulemama for her inspiration. Along with all the projects, I am wading through piles of books that I keep compulsively checking out of the library- crewel embroidery, Home Economics (vintage home care- a gift from Morgan), Aesop’s Fables, the Nature Notes and Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady, The World of Downton Abbey (season 3 is coming up so soon!!!), the complete poems of e.e. Cummings, and A Lady Cyclist’s Guide to Kashgar (Library Journal rated it the best historical fiction novel of 2012, so I had to give it a try). Keeping me company amongst all these pursuits is a warm peppermint latte in my favorite mug. Here’s to a snowy Sunday afternoon~ enjoy yours too! x C