Bounty from the Northernlands
here we go, the height of all fall's bounty:
we got our bioregional swap package!
in case you aren't familiar with the delightful project i speak of, mary from terrallectualism has hosted this swap for a couple years in a row and it is mighty fun. you gather items that you feel represent your bio-region and send them away to an assigned partner who, in turn, sends you a package of goodies from his or her own land.
my partner was sweet Tracy from northern Michigan and oh, the goodies she sent!
birchbark, acorns, a trivet of beach stones, hand-tapped maple syrup, homemade blackberry and blueberry jam...
and even crafty decorations to get my home thanksgiving ready...look how talented she is!
Tracy says she has made a bunting like this for each season for her home, such a great and festive idea. i plan to use it year after year.
have you ever seen a stone like this? it's called a Petoskey stone and it lived on Michigan's floor underwater about 350 million years ago! it was alive, ate plankton and had tentacles and was moved via glacier millions of years later to its scattered resting spot.
quite the pretty maple leaf there too, eh? straight from tracy's backyard.
and now for the handmade knitted goodies she sent Lucy!
is this pumpkin hat the most adorable thing you've ever seen? you should touch it! it's also the softest, made from wool that is grown, spun, and dyed at an organic farm near their home.
Lucy loves to wear it and her daddy loves to dress her in it. He thought it was a carrot! either way, adorable.
there's a cute story behind it too. tracy's own twin boys were born very early and missed halloween dress-up during their stay at the NICU. so a nurse knit them each a little pumpkin hat, and now Tracy carries on the tradition and knits one for fall babies :) so sweet.
also some tiny little warm toasty socks for cold November mornings.
mama got treasures too....
Tracy made this gorgeous set of earrings and necklace from beach glass from Lake Michigan; i've gotten about a thousand compliments and love telling people where they're from. Not to mention the colors seem to go with every fallish outfit i have so i've been wearing them every day :)
another note: if you have never tasted REAL maple syrup freshly hand tapped from michigan's trees, in a mason jar and not a store-bought bottle, well...i highly recommend it. darin and i had it on french toast just this morning, and the flavor is still haunting my tongue. it tastes exactly the way autumn should taste.
participating in this swap was such a fun and inspiring experience for me. it got me thinking a lot about where i live and where other families live and how we build our lives around a sense of place. and it got me interested in michigan, a place i have never been that has always been a little mysterious to me...it has two parts? it has a lot of lakes around it? it has colleges and cold, cold winters? i have heard it is insanely beautiful, and tracy's town is styled as a little alpine village. i almost feel like i've been for a homey visit to her craft-filled, kid-filled cozy life :)
Thank you so much Mary, for hosting this swap and Tracy, my gratitude knows no bounds for your incredible generosity and the spirit of home that you infused in this amazing package.
Did you participate? How'd it go? How I'd love a detailed glimpse into everyone's package, to get a whiff of all these places we call home.