Books · Reading

What I’m reading: Milk Cow Kitchen

I’m catching a flight to Seattle in less than 6 hours and I’m breaking one of my cardinal rules, which is to never, ever take a real book on a plane.  Real books are too heavy and clunky and they limit you to just one thing, whereas my Kindle offers a world of books in a teeny little device.  There’s only one thing that will make me break that tried-and-true rule and that’s a new book by MaryJane Butters.

If you aren’t familiar with MaryJane Butters and MaryJanesFarm, I have to ask you – what are you doing with your life?! Put down your iPhone, log off Facebook, and listen up.

Continue reading “What I’m reading: Milk Cow Kitchen”

Books · Me · Obsessions · The farmgirl life

Getting to know me – again

So back in 2003, I discovered MaryJanesFarm.  I stumbled upon the magazine at a Walmart in my hometown, bought it, and was hooked.  I still remember flipping through that issue, my heart in my throat over the gorgeous pictures and stories MaryJane shared in her magazine.

May 10, 2004 I joined the message boards on the website and began to talk to a lot of really great women.  Eventually, I got to meet MaryJane Butters herself when she went on a book tour and stopped at Franny’s amazing cabin in the hills of Kentucky.  This picture below, which I took about two years ago, shows how my obsession/collection had grown:

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERABack in 2009, though, I started to pull away from the crafty/organic person that I was and started writing a lot.  And the problem when you write fanfiction is that you get sucked into a fandom and it takes over your whole life, which is what happened to me.  I walked away from the fandom about a year ago but only recently found my way back to MaryJanesFarm.  I’ve still subscribed to the magazine all this time, of course, but I wasn’t the same person anymore.  And frankly, this new me, the “Vintage 2009” version of Rachel – I didn’t like her much.

So now I’m reconnecting with the crafty/organic woman who dreams of owning her own tiny farm.   Now, though, I have visions of my farm being surrounded by the evergreens of the Pacific Northwest because every trip to Seattle just confirms that it feels like home out there.  But yesterday, I logged back into the MaryJanesFarm message boards for the first time in forrrrever.  Imagine my surprise when I clicked on my profile and discovered that I had joined exactly nine years ago, to the day!

This weekend, I’m going through all my craft supplies and fabrics and yarns and threads.  It was so great to open up a tub and see it filled with beautiful prints!

photo (1)And imagine my surprise when I opened up a second tub and found all the folkart dolls I used to make.  How did I forget that I made these?  I used to sell them at craft fairs!  I still have tons of them and I need to do something with them – maybe I’ll give them away?

photoAnyway, I’m having fun reconnecting with the gal I once was.  With some time and effort, I hope to become her again. She wore skirts a lot and made quilts and went to church regularly.  (The only addition is that she now writes regularly, too.  She’s working on a novel, dangit!) She wasn’t a bad person to be.

Books · Reading

What I’m reading right now….

For full disclosure, I’ve been a fan of MaryJane Butters for well over a decade.  Each issue of her organic lifestyle magazine feels more like a piece of art in my hand than an actual magazine.  I keep each issue and love to flip back through them so that I can be re-inspired by the stories and tempted by the delicious recipes.  I subscribe to her “farmgirl” precepts, regardless of where I might be living at the time.

This is her latest book:

glam

In true MaryJane fashion, it is fantastic.  Gorgeous photography.  Practical advice.  It tugs at the heartstrings.  I’ve wanted a vintage camper for a very long time (and even owned one for a while, until we realized it was too damaged to be able to practically restore) and this book makes it seem possible. Not only is it full of delicious recipes, there are adorable craft projects scattered throughout.  And the restoration tips for vintage campers are so helpful to a total novice like me.  Thanks to this book, I can honestly say that 1958 Airstream Bubble will be mine eventually!