Posted in Crafty madness!, Culinary adventures, Homesteading

Hard-boiled joy

Easter is upon us: a time to reflect & remember that the God I worship literally died so I’d be free. Yet while all that heart-heavy stuff is marinating, windows are opening, the sun is shining and Spring is upon us. It’s as if the world is asking us to shake off our heaviness and come play a little. “Weeping may last the night but joy comes with the morning.” –Psalm 30:5

And over here at the Brookes’ homestead, we’ve been boiling our own joy: naturally dyed Easter eggs! This tradition dates back thousands of years, and I’ve long wanted to experiment for myself. With some help from Mama (who’s in town for a visit), we boiled eggs and made dye baths. Science is fun!

So, without further ado, here are the results:

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Top photo: Dye baths -top row: curry, spinach, red cabbage, beets -bottom row: onion skin, green tea, beets. Bottom left photo: turmeric with string. Bottom right photo: red cabbage with string. Loved this process! Definitely repeating!
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My favorite dye bath was the onion skin. Super cool (and really cheap!!!)
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Dye bath processing. Next time, I’ll double the vinegar.
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This year, we did canned beets and a mix of canned and fresh spinach. Fresh is for SURE the way to go. Now I know for next year. Beets are supposed to dye eggs brilliant pink.
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Super appreciate my local Co-op making these great reference sheets available! Definitely will try the red cabbage and onion skins again. Stunning color!
Posted in Crafty madness!

Happy Spring!

Last week, I wandered around the silk florals section of Hobby Lobby and picked up a few stems for a springy project. Usually, I’m not a fan of the artificial floral selection in craft stores. I think it’s hard to get plastic & fabric to look like real flowers, and I’m not a fan of unnatural colors. But if you seek, you will find! And I found some stems that looked so realistic, I was delighted to take them home. A half hour’s work turned a bare grapevine wreath into some spring happiness. And our front door (which had stood empty of the dead Christmas wreath for less than 24 hours…) now looks ready to welcome the season of growth.

Spring on our stoop
Happy Spring!
Posted in Crafty madness!

Wreath-a-palooza!

Last week, my friend Ann and I went to a wreath making class at the Northeast MPLS Mother Earth Gardens. I’m a newbie at floral arranging and crafting with foliage, so this class was AWESOME. At the end, I had sap covered hands that smelled of Christmas trees and a beautiful, tailored-to-my-style wreath. I will absolutely do everything in my power to make this a new Christmas tradition. Playing with branches is fun!!!

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One thing I dislike about most options in ready-made wreaths is gaudiness. I like subtle green-on-green & was really pleased with how my concept was executed!

 

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It’s actually quite time consuming to wire in all the posies, and I had 6 different sections! Super worth it as I love how it turned out!

 

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Ann’s choice of pine cones and the huge green leaves looks awesome. So glad we went to this class together!

 

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The wreath in all its glory on our front door. Welcome Christmas every day!