Highlights of my winter break

By the time you will be reading this post, I’ll already be back in school- winter break over. But after a demanding fall semester, with a God-given triumphant finish, I loved every minute of my time off before spring semester came rolling in. I had about 3 weeks vacation, and during that time I was able to enjoy and do many things I don’t often get to do while in school. Besides the wonderful time spent together with family and friends celebrating Christmas and the dawn of a new year, there were many other neat occasions that filled my days with joy. So these are the highlights of my winter break.

I baked nearly 7 batches of this delicious sweet walnut bread for Christmas and New Years.

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I listened to good music, on CD’s and youtube…

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Went to work with dad…

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Celebrated a birthday…with waffles for breakfast

And hand-made decorations made by my family…

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Experimented with some pyrography. (More detailed post coming up in the months ahead!)

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Indulged in the best natural popcorn from Costco…

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Enjoyed having time to do some reading…

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Went on a girl’s day out with mom…

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What did you do in winter break? What have you done lately? 

Discovering Interesting Art Forms

Come with me and let’s explore a collection of different artisan occupations! It’s fascinating and beautiful to watch people use their God-given talents to produce art, express their ideas, and create useful things.

Below are a few of my favorite crafty activities that I would like to try my hand at one day. No, I’m not in search for acquiring new hobbies- I’m sticking to the ones I know I can do really well 😉 . But the art forms I’m exploring in this blog post are so interesting that- well, I couldn’t help but share them with you dear readers, and see what you think of them too.

I posted a short demonstration video for each, and my comments, to get you all interested in these (rather) rare art forms.

Maybe you’ve seen videos like these before or already knew about these types of crafts…or maybe you’re learning something new right now! Nevertheless, it never hurts to explore further. Take a peek and tell me which art form you liked best!

What would you like to try out?

Which craft was totally new to you?

Have you ever done anything like this before? Tell me more!

Sugar Candy Art

So lovely and delicate! A dear friend sent me a similar video of sugar candy to watch, and it immediately reminded me of the snow candy in the Little House on the Prairie books!  I bet it takes quite a lot of experience, but…I’d definitely give it a try.

Candle Carving

Candles…aaah. They make everything so cozy. But this is THE ultimate candle! The designs are extraordinary! It looks like candy- I  almost want to eat it. And I think it’s a delightful experience to carve into that semi-soft wax and see layers of colors beneath!

Letterpress and Printing

I discovered letterpress and printing after taking a design class. It reminds me of the colonial times, and although it can be a complicated process, I’d like to try out a historical art/trade. The letterpress machine makes cards and fliers that have designs and words impressed into the paper, and you can feel the shape of it. Printing is a little different, but a printing machine I think is just as interesting. Setting type is probably so time consuming…but in the end it’s worth it! Wouldn’t it be neat to print out your own “newspaper” or a poster?

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Basket Weaving

Baskets of all kinds are so charming. They are also very useful. I think basket weaving can be really fun. The first video demonstrates some basket weaving that was usually done in colonial Canada. The second is just a quick example of expert basket weavers (complete with lively fiddle music in the background!) Watch their swift hands!

Sand Drawing 

For all the artists out there, sand drawing can be another way to show your artistic abilities! This girl is really talented and it’s fun to watch her change her drawing from one scene to another with just a wipe of the hand. Yes, I agree it would take a lot of practice to make drawings like hers….but ah, I can daydream of being able to sand draw like that, can’t I?

Whittling/Carving

If anyone would come up to me, give me a block of wood and some carving tools and say “what would you like to carve?” I’d say “a horse.” Carved and whittled figurines are so beautiful. I really like the smooth feel of carved objects, or the rough edges of little whittled toys and such. These two videos are rather long, but just take a quick peek if you’d like. This is probably one of the hardest things to try out and takes a lot of learning. Would you ever try out carving?

photo credit

 

photo credit

 

Festively decked for Christmas

Ding dong! merrily on high
In heav’n the bells are ringing

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Ding dong! verily the sky
Is riv’n with Angel singing

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Gloria,
Hosanna in excelsis!

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Gloria,
Hosanna in excelsis!

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E’en so here below, below,
Let steeple bells be swungen,

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And “Io, io, io!”
By priest and people sungen.

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Gloria,
Hosanna in excelsis!

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Pray you, dutifully prime
Your matin chime, ye ringers

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May you beautifully rime
Your evetime song, ye singers.

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Gloria,
Hosanna in excelsis!

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Gloria,
Hosanna in excelsis!

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How are you preparing for Christmas?

Thanksgiving

They will celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness. Psalm 145:7

“Yours, O LORD, is the greatness and the power
and the glory and the majesty and the splendor,
for everything in heaven and earth is yours.
Yours, O LORD, is the kingdom;
you are exalted as head over all.
Wealth and honor come from you;
you are the ruler of all things.
In your hands are strength and power
to exalt and give strength to all.

Now, our God, we give you thanks,
and praise your glorious name.”

1 Chronicles 29:11-13 

Caramel & Brownie

This is Caramel. She is our neighbor.

And this is her baby, Brownie.

And that little white egg is baby Brownie’s “brother or sister”.

Our bird neighbors decided to make their home nest in a hanging pot near the doorway, right there in the shade of the vineyard.

Here’s a little video that my sister made of Caramel sitting on her egg. My sister named both the mother bird and baby bird, by the way.

Cute…to just see them nest in the hanging pot. This is the 5th or 6th bird nest we found around our house in the past few years.

Anticipating the 4th

Beautiful stained glass window at church,
reminding us to rejoice and sing unto the Lord

Festive wreath adorning our front door, handmade by Abby,
with Anna and Sarah’s help.
I can already imagine fireworks and the star spangled banner. 

Patriotic hand-sewn skirt, made together with my mom.
Did I tell you I am excited about Independence Day?

It’s the first time I make my own clothes! It’s not impossible! Seriously, it was so easy, you gotta get yourself a sewing machine and do it for yourself! You don’t even need a pattern, just copy off of a skirt that you like, and then sew together a new one. It only took us two days to complete it.