Peepers, willows, and geese

March 31, 2011 at 3:02 pm | Posted in country life, country living, faith, family, food, free knitting patterns, Knit Alongs, knit-a-long, knitting, Life, love, photography, recipes, shopping, travel, yarn | 5 Comments
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My husband’s grandfather had a saying about the peepers freezing three times before spring officially arrives … we heard them last week, then there was a freeze and we heard them again this week.  I don’t know if this counts as them being frozen twice already, or only once.  What I do know is that once you start hearing peepers the glowing green grass and flowering fruit trees are not too far behind.

Between now and then we will hear more and more peepers until peepers is about all we can hear, there will be so many birds singing that they will wake us in the morning and charm us during the evening hours, the geese will create an ever increasing symphony (I think of it as a symphony, though some might consider it a cacophony) of calls and honks as they feed in the fields around us and fly overhead at dusk and dawn.

The willows will transform from their lean, graceful golden winter state to a plumper green-gold of early spring as the buds of their little leaves begin popping to the surface up and down their slender whips.

This in-between time when the peepers are freezing and thawing and the world is slowly waking from a long, cold winter nap is a time of sweet anticipation of warmth and beauty we know will come.

I wanted to thank everyone who participated in the drawing my son and I held last week going into this one. When I asked people to visit the Love Letters Treasury at Etsy and from there to visit my son’s store then go back and leave a comment at the Treasury I didn’t know what to expect. It was so fun to read the various comments people made, coming up with creative ways to mention something they had seen in his store.

If you didn’t check it out, you might enjoy reading through their comments … somehow it seems like a walk in a park to me. I don’t know why. Check it out and see how it impresses you.

Using a random number generator, I selected three winners from those who left comments. I contacted each of the winners via the “convo” feature at Etsy and have heard back from two. The winners are:

phqueenb = Grand Prize
nuttywifery = First Prize
sandyp218 = Second Prize

By the way, you should check out Flying Junction’s new “Keep Calm and Carry On” vintage style print, available in 32 decorator colors. I will be hanging one of these in my dinning room shortly to remind us all to do just that … keep calm and carry on.

And, I notified one reader who participated in last week’s survey that she is a winner in another random drawing for a $25 Amazon Gift Certificate — congratulations Linda H. She tells me she will be picking up a new knitting book from Amazon, how sweet is that.

I have another survey for the same client this week, and there will be another random drawing of all participants for a $25 Amazon Gift Certificate. If you are willing to help, it is a brief survey–only four questions–so if you can take a couple of minutes to participate you can get into the random drawing. Note: To be eligible for the drawing, you must complete the survey by midnight tonight, 31 March 2011.Check it out here.

Tomorrow I will post Stage 3 directions for my Summer in the Country Cotton Blanket Knit-Along, so be sure to check back if you are participating. If you aren’t in the knit along yet, check it out and look at some of the photos members of the group are posting on their blogs, Ravelry, etc. to show their progress. It is a lovely pattern, with some cool surprises as you go along.

Next week be on the look out for two recipes for Pimento Cheese, a delicious and refreshing sandwich spread. My son and I will share the down home southern style spread my mama used to make when I was a kid along with his updated urban gourmet style spread that I have yet to try. Yummy, yummy, yummy!

Hope you have a great day!

Best wishes,
~firefly and son

My son is a designer, graphic artist and photographer (Etsy seller: FlyingJunction at, specializing in vintage look subway signs and bus scrolls). He has worked as a professional artist and graphic designer for more than ten years. His t-shirt designs, sold both online and in exclusive boutiques, have been worn by celebrities around the globe and are frequently spotted at major sporting events, in celebrity photos, television productions, and music videos. He commutes between Los Angeles and the family farm in upstate New York, calling both places home. We collaborate on many things, including recipe development and the Knitter’s and Crocheter’s Eye Chart prints and other fiber lover art prints I sell in my Etsy store.


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  1. Hello firefly,

    Beautiful work! I love your son’s shop, just wonderful! Art certainly runs in your family!!:o) I cannot begin to tell you just how much of an inspiration you are. Continue to enjoy a lovely Spring.:o)



    • Thank you so much Beverly, I always love hearing from you! Hope your spring is beautiful as well … you certainly are! ~firefly

  2. Hi Jackie,

    It will be quite interesting to see your Pimento Cheese recipe from your hometown. I have a recipe for this that has been passed down through my family, and I have tweaked it just a wee bit to result in one phenomenal PC spread, especially when the sandwiches are buttered on 1 side and toasted in the oven until they are golden brown. Man, what a taste that is! I have seen a lot of recipes over the years that have all sorts of things added to it to bring texture, etc. I don’t do that, though. I am very particular about the type of cheese that I use, and I always, always use Duke’s Mayonnaise because it has no sugar in it. I don’t know if you can get Dukes in your town. You probably could order it online and have it shipped in. The company that makes it is in Richmond, VA.

    I have yet to start on the KAL. I am knee deep in a shawl that I am doing, which I thought that I would be done with before now.. Groan.. 🙂

    Shawl is really beautiful though. It took me forever and a day, but I finally got the hang of your Vineyard Wrap down! I knitted 5 swatches in different yarns and different needle sizes to see which one would give me the most stitch definition. I finally started doing it in earnest about 2 weeks ago, maybe 3, and I can finally see the vine that your pattern said would show up.. 🙂 YAY! I can’t wait to see the finished project. **Sigh!** I have 2 more skeins to go. I just started the 2nd skein of 220 yards. 🙂

    • Yum, your pimento cheese sandwich technique sounds great. It will be interesting to learn more about different kinds of pimento cheese recipes. I’m so happy to know that your vines are showing up — isn’t that just so cool the first time you see the pattern taking shape? Well, the KAL info will be there for always now, so no hurry for you. Just enjoy whatever knitting you are working on and relax with it. ~firefly

  3. Hey again!

    I will send you the PC recipe if you like. I would prefer to do it privately because it is a family recipe that no one knows, according to my grandmother. I have thought about creating a small family recipe booklet over the years compiled of recipes that she taught me how to make from my childhood until she passed in 1988. Of course, when she passed, people didn’t worry so much about healthy cooking and as a result quite a few of the recipes have a good healthy dose of fat calories, but there is only so much tweaking I will do to her recipes before I change the taste completely. I just make sure that I don’t fix them too often, ya know? I changed the PC recipe just a wee bit and the change resulted in a much heartier taste if you can imagine. The change, to me, was such an obvious thing to do yet it didn’t change the base recipe. I even use her old Saladmaster grater to grate the blocks of cheese. No shortcuts for this recipe. That would change the recipe far too much..:) She would love it, I am sure.

    Yes, it is quite lovely to see the wrap starting to take shape. The vines seem to just pop out when I lay it on my lap to marvel that I am doing THAT! I am making it for a friend of mine who lives in Florida of all places. I still haven’t quite understood why she would need a wrap with this much warmth in it in Florida, but she asked for it.. So I am going to make it for her. 🙂 I chose a turquoise wool to do it with because that is her favorite color. She says it reminds her of the ocean all around her. I even found a huge square button to wrap the I-cord around, and the button is a mirror image of the yarn. How cool is that?

    I received your Amazon gift certificate. First time I have ever won anything by answering a survey. Now I just have to decide which knitting book I want off of Amazon. I am torn between the latest entrelac book, knitting socks with handpainted yarns, or one of the knitter’s template books, or reading chart books. LOL.. I have NO idea which one I will get!

    Anyway, let me know if you would like my PC recipe. It is very late, and I must close my eyes. Oh, I almost forgot.. I am SO glad to see that you found someone else to make your cotton yarn for you! YAY! I look forward to seeing the colors that you come up now that you have a new place to make the yarn! Care to make some in that lovely shade you knitted your basketweave scarf and hat in? What was it, periwinkle? I am nuts about combining the right color of purple with the right shade of green.. Sort of like violets with leafy foilage..


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