What do you do to keep busy in the winter?

aka_margo(z5a WI)October 19, 2006

With winter approaching faster than I would like it to, I was just thinking of the things I do in the winter to keep myself busy. During the growing season I am always busy in the garden, and it seems to leave a huge void once it gets too cold.

In the past I learned how to sew, have sold a lot on Ebay, have made teacup birdfeeders, done lots of shopping (mostly window shopping), started seeds indoors, and this past weekend I took a jewelry making class. I decided it was time for a new hobby to entertain me. Little did I know it would be so expensive. So I guess I trade buying hostas for buying beads this winter!

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hostared(Z5, IL)

The Holiday preperations and shopping keep me busy till Jan 1st. I like to do some crafting and work shortened hours maintaining a couple of greenhouses for stores. Cross Stitch is a hobby I enjoy in the evening to wind down. (thanks Barb (aka choc) for the CD) DH is retired and he always has a project going so he loves to include me into it. Then April hits and it's busy, busy, busy!

Also when the sun shines in the winter it makes everything great. I love being in the greenhouses when the sun is out because things are alive and growing.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2006 at 9:00AM
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Actually this winter I want to make some porcelain dolls. Not typical baby dolls mind you, but my own creations.

I'll form the heads, hands and feet from clay and sew the bodies and clothes. Of course not knowing how to sew is not going to be a problem, how hard can it be?? LOL!

I'm looking for some curly sheep's or goat's wool to use for hair and beard materials, have no clue where to find that, but I'll keep looking...the craft stores only had some type of synthetic fiber (it was yucky!). If anyone has some suggestions, that would be appreciated!

I've already started making a rabbit, a cat, a sheep, a few Santas, a frog and a Humpty Dumpty out of porcelain, now I have to work on getting fabric and trims.

Margo, I have bought a lot of beads on ebay too, I'd love to see some of your creations. I actually took a lamp work bead class at a local art center, the $$ outlay for the tools was too great for me to pursue it further though. So, I have a true appreciation for the artists that create these beads. Fun stuff!

Hostared, I love preparing for the holidays! I look forward to it starting around Oct. 1st. Can't believe its the 19th already!!! Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Yippee! Also, you have greenhouses? You go girl!! Would love to see your seedling pics at some point in Feb when I'm pining away for my hostas.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2006 at 10:30AM
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During the winter I read, do lots of Christmas decorating and then un-decorating - but for the last few years I've been teaching myself mosaic art.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2006 at 3:06PM
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That vase is absolutly georgeous! My grandma did a lot of crafting, but the most I can do is cross stitch, and not the count by # either, I have to have the pattern, I just can't do anything that can describe me as being crafty!
I usually mess with the horses in the winter, would rather do it in the winter then in the summer, the only time I don't is when it is below freezing which only happens for about two weeks total.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2006 at 5:07PM
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ademink(z5a-5b Indianapolis)

I'm loving the tray in the lower left corner! Jen, if your bead creations are anything like your birdfeeders and birdbaths, let me know when you start selling them! ;) Donna, sounds crazy but I wonder about checking w/ a local 4H or something for wool....????

As for me, I'm also an Ebay seller in the winter. I also have "busy season" w/ my nonprofit - serving the homeless in the winter is a heck of a job! I'm going to grow hosta seeds this winter and am always coming up w/ new re-landscaping ideas. I read a lot of garden magazines and hope to learn to knit this winter!

oh, and I eat.....ha!

    Bookmark   October 19, 2006 at 6:30PM
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aka_margo(z5a WI)

Hey Andrea....I forgot about the eating!!! Oh yes, that keeps me busy in the winter. Seems I bake, cook, and eat a whole lot more in the winter.

I've only made two things so far with the beads. I am going to look at Hobby Lobby tonight to see if their beads are any good and if they are cheaper than the bead stores. When I have a moment I will post a picture of my new necklace I made.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2006 at 6:41PM
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Love the mosaic stuff!! You guys are making me feel inadequate here....All I ever do in winter is grow Hosta seed.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2006 at 1:51AM
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hostared(Z5, IL)

Love the mosaics...you have crafted the art very well. The tray is beautiful. Do you usually find old object or new objects to create on?

Playinmud I wish I could do seedlings. No these greenhouses are in stores and the company I work for we manage them all season long but we are a Perennial grower so when April comes its alot of product we display. We display and maintain the health of large lush tropicals, orchids and things that are blooming. Some smaller plants and holiday things that come in also. Sad to say when they are not at their peak they go to plant heaven. But this part of my work is just for us to be able to work int he winter. Our main expertise and interest is perennials.

Who does the bird houses?

Ademink were in IN do you do your non-profit work?

    Bookmark   October 20, 2006 at 9:26AM
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ademink(z5a-5b Indianapolis)

hostarox, you're a step ahead of me...I've not accomplished growing from seed yet! funny but it's overwhelming to me - finding the right sterile mix, etc, etc. there are too many ways to do it and so i get like a deer in the headlights. i do much better w/ only ONE way to do things! hehe

Jen, hook a sistah up w/ a photo, would you? :)

hostared, I am in Indianapolis! My office is right on the Monument Circle in the middle of town. :) www.pourhouse.org is the website.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2006 at 9:37AM
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WOW, I forgot about the eating thing too! DUH! I love to cook and bake...seem to have more time to do that during the winter months. Cranberry Orange muffins, pumpkin pie, pecan pie, Mozzerella Chicken, fusili and turkey meatballs, Tuscany chicken stew. Groan! We all need to trade recipes. ;o)

    Bookmark   October 20, 2006 at 10:02AM
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Old Fashioned Stuffing

1 pan fresh cornbread
1 pan biscuits
1 1/2 sticks butter
2 cups sauteed onions and celery
4 Tbsp. sage
salt and pepper (to taste)
2 cup chicken or turkey broth
1 Tbsp. chicken bouillon

combine breads. Add broth, sage, bouillon, salt and pepper.
Stir in celery, onions and butter. Pour into a large pan.
Bake at 350' for one hour.

I couldn't resist.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2006 at 10:36AM
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Yum yum, that recipe sounds delicious. One and a half sticks of butter can't hurt.

hostared - The mosaics are mostly done on thrift shop and garage sale items. The top left and top right are trays from the thrift shop. The center top is on a rusty old table top. After getting the design on there I just felt it didn't need background tile or grout. I wanted to see the rustic look of the metal. It's hanging on the wall just inside the garden. The bottom two on the left are both tables bought at garage sales for $1. (you just can't see the legs on the left one). I get those plastic vases and planters 2nd hand and have quite a collection that I haven't even started on yet. I let what ever tile or broken pottery I'm using guide me to what it should look like.


    Bookmark   October 20, 2006 at 11:46AM
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aka_margo(z5a WI)

Here are the two necklaces I have made so far. The photo does not do the colors justice. The big stoned one is red and black jasper. The other one looks pink in the photo, but all the beads are some shade of lavendar.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2006 at 5:53PM
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ademink(z5a-5b Indianapolis)

Jen! Those ar amazing!!!! I love the one w/ the big stone!

I'm making stuffing tonight and I'm not kidding. lol

    Bookmark   October 21, 2006 at 2:00PM
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hi all...

well...i used to propogate houseplants in winter...had hundreds of african violets.....but have now given all inside plants away to friends,,,,neighbors,,,teachers....

so may try a hosta seed this year....

also....have recently become "claustrophic" (must have started back when i got rid of the house plants and just didn't know it)...things creep up on me slowly...lol...like hosta addition,,,,,,,,,anyway... (used to be a pack rat),,,still have stuff from "high school"...there is just "NO ROOM" in this small 2 bedroom house...

i am cleaning closets,,,cupboards,,,the basement,,,gargage,,,things just "GOTTA GO",,,

we watch a LOT of football and hockey here....also go to the highschool basketball games....and,,,of course,,,our daughters 7th grade basketball team...


    Bookmark   October 23, 2006 at 2:52PM
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schenley(WMA z5)

Jen...what are Teacup birdfeeders? Got any pictures?

McTavish...those mosiacs are absolutely gorgeous.

I spend most of the winter sewing and labeling my photos (mostly hosta) and planning the gardens for the following year.

I hope those of you who are staring seeds will keep us posted on your progress...I really want to try that some day.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2006 at 2:53PM
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aka_margo(z5a WI)

Here is a picture of one by my Fire Island hosta.

This is a birdbath I created with a glass bowl and a gazing ball stand.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2006 at 10:16PM
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lynnem(5 Ohio)

I make container candles and soap, and I'm currently working on an annual fundraiser for my office, we adopt a Kindergarten class every December, and use the candles to raise funds.

I also am currently into "stamping", and am making my Christmas cards now.

mctavish6, love your mosiacs... the dragonfly tray and the rose vase are just gorgeous, (of course, all of them are beautiful)

My new favorite thing to do is to go out and take care of my new ponies. One's some version of a Shetland, don't know what the other is, he was a rescue buddy. We lost our horse 3 winters ago, and the barn and pasture have been empty since. It's so nice to see those guys out there again. I don't even mind cleaning the stalls! Hubby got me carhart overalls, carhart coat, and muck boots for my birthday! I'm all set for winter.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2006 at 7:01PM
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lynnem, yea, there is something about the smell of a barn on a cold winter day, it's such a earthy smell, that is the only thing I can think of to discribe it, guess you have to do it to understand. I too never minded the cleaning up. Back when my barn was full, I would go out all covered up for the cold, but after a while, the body heat of the animals and the physical work would get me so warm, I started shedding clothes. I miss those days, clean a bit and then take a break and fuss with the critters. I'm afraid my two goats and few birds don't require much cleaning, a fast sweep with a push broom pretty much does it.

Like, oh WOW on the mosiacs and jewelery, just beautiful, plain and simple, no other word for it. And Margo's birdbath is way too cute, such a nice garden accent.

Now I am a cross stitcher, been doing it for years and am not happy unless I am doing an impossible pattern on the most difficult of fabrics, I get bored with anything less. I haven't done any in years because I have not had time, but I'm itching to get stitching again and decided to do something for myself for a change, I have never kept any of my work. I made a seperate post asking some opinions as to which picture to do. As soon as I decide, I'll make the pattern and get all the floss and fabric ready, I have every known dmc floss all organized and plenty of fabric, I'm all set to go as soon as I decide what to do.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2006 at 4:32AM
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There are a lot of talented people here! Thanks for sharing the pics, I love seeing all of the finished products! Wish I could spend an afternoon with each of you to learn your craft.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2006 at 10:34AM
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