About Blog Title...

As a child, it was one of my greatest delights to visit my grandparents in the spring when the whip-poor-wills began to call. Grandma and Grandpa lived in a remote valley of the Ozark Mountains where there were trees a plenty, and, seemingly, a whip-poor-will, or two, in each one.
My grandmother insisted that a whip-poor-will's call was not "whip-poor-will," but instead, "chip-butter-white-oak." I would listen really hard trying to hear it exactly as she said it was, but all I could hear was "whip-poor-will, whip-poor-will,..." But, I never let on to her.
I remember my grandpa watching and listening, with an amused look on his face, to one of these listening sessions. Shortly after that he began to call me, just for fun, "Chip Butter." It is a name I am proud to wear for I still love to hear that long, lonesome call on a warm summer's eve. And, sometimes, when I listen really, really hard, it seems I can hear quite clearly, "chip-butter-white-oak, chip-butter-white-oak..."

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Living Inside a Cloud.... (And, The Brown Corduroy)

There have been so many foggy days and foggy nights here, lately, it has seemed we must be living inside a cloud; certainly not days fit for getting out with the camera, or so I thought.

A couple of days ago, I had a strong desire to go exploring in search of something to  "shoot," so when Millie and I headed into that foggy cloud, my camera was right at hand.  I was surprised, but not disappointed, at the results.  In the top photo, I can almost see Thoreau stepping down to water's edge as he contemplates the day. 


Now for the brown corduroy... It is exactly like the red corduroy, except it is brown...my color, for sure.  Both dresses have back ties or sashes, just as my dresses had when I was a kid. ( I have previously written about those sashes here.)  There were four ties to be narrowly hemmed all around, so I pulled out the old Singer with her narrow hemmer attachment, and went to work.  She stitched as though she were new, right out of the box, despite the fact that she is now fifty years old.   It was good practice, for sure, but I think the next dresses I make won't have sashes. 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

The Red Corduroy...

Shakespeare once said that, "Clothes make the man," (which I strongly disagree with) but, if that were the case, do clothes also make the doll?

Our two youngest granddaughters might readily agree with that notion, for they surely do enjoy dressing their dolls (American Girl dolls) in nice clothes.  Hopefully, they will be delighted with the new clothes that Mrs. Claus is sewing for them. (She's a bit slow these days, it seems!) 

The Red Corduroy is the first of four.  One of my earlier dolls, Noelle, who hangs out here in the sewing room, has volunteered to model each one when it is completed, with the stipulation that she will get a new dress of her own when we are all done with the Santa Claus thing.

I remember well my best Christmas ever, when I got a trunk filled with doll clothes that Mrs. Claus had made.  Why, she could sew almost as well as my mother could!  The doll in the old photo below could well be the doll these clothes were made to fit.  This photo was taken on a long ago Christmas Day, when my little brother and I were posing with toys that Santa Claus brought.  It must have been a warm day for we weren't even wearing coats, and we both had a bad case of sun grins.   

Friday, January 6, 2017

Millie's First Snow...

"The night veils without a doubt a part of this glorious creation; but day comes to reveal to us this great work..." ~ Thoreau

Even though Millie is now eighteen months old, snow was something unknown to her, for last year's winter was without snow.



The Oaks seem to embrace it...

Two sets of tracks...hers and mine.  She won't ride!

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Farewell to 2016

2016 is fading fast, and all of us here at Chip Butter White Oak really can't say we're sorry.  We won't be looking back, but will keep our hands (and paws) on the wheel and look straight ahead into the brand New Year.  Thanks to all of you who take your time to stop by and walk with us as we explore these trails.  Happy New Year to you all!

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

2016 Photo of the Year...

Second Runner-Up...

First Runner-Up...

2016 Photo of the Year...

It has been a big year for this little shelter pup that was picked up by Animal Control from a ditch along the side of  a remote county road, along with a little brother, last Christmas eve. I can't help but wonder what the pups might have done that got them ousted from their previous home only one day before Christmas.  Perhaps they demolished the colorful lights and ornaments that adorned the Christmas tree... or tore apart the brightly wrapped holiday gifts decorated with shiny ribbons and sprinkled with glitter...  or maybe the stockings that had been hung with care were no longer hung at all!

 Millie was at the shelter, according to the records from December 24, 2015 until February 4, 2016, when we brought her home.  I won't say we "rescued" her, for I think, in reality, she may have rescued us. She has been a mega chewer, but it seems the worst is behind us.  If you should come calling, you'll not find a welcoming mat at the door, and that's for sure!  Congratulations, Sweet Mille (aka Dingo Dog)! 

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Merry Christmas

Wishing you all the old-fashioned, heartwarming joys of the Christmas season.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

It's All About the Blanket...

It really is all about the blanket.  And, that's the way it was back in  1913 when Mary McAboy (1876-1961) from Missoula, Montana, began to make her Skookum Indian dolls which depicted different Native American tribes, and usually sold as tourists' souvenirs.  Apparently, she had, at first,  arranged to acquire remnants from Pendleton Woolen Mills in Oregon and/or from Hudson Bay Company.  Later on, when the dolls began to be mass produced, colorfully designed felt-like cloth was manufactured specifically for the dolls.

Skookums don't have arms but are wrapped with Indian-style folded blankets so that it looks like they have folded arms.  (My dolls do have arms, but by the time I had finished folding and refolding this little blanket, I almost wished this doll didn't, either.)  Some Skookums have bead necklaces, papooses, hair ties, headbands, kerchiefs, feathered headdresses and more.  This doll has a papoose, a kerchief, and hair ties.  Her hair is sculpted from cotton floss and the braids are secured with painted pipe cleaners.  Her moccasins are sculpted from clay.

The blanket my latest "Skookum" inspired doll is wearing is cut from an old, very worn and thread-bare blanket, which, even now, is still quite beautiful. Of course, it is a given that I would want to use the most worn part of the blanket, for I like the look of black and brown together.  Well, no matter, tattered and worn matters not, for it is still all about the blanket.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Falling Leaves...

Falling Leaves and Young Son (my latest Little People project...more later)  

"Let's go."  Millie knows these words well, and was excited to hear them when our last Thanksgiving guest had come and gone.  So, " Go", we did!

The whole outdoors had been glorious with brilliant color all week, even this late into November. It had taken some discipline, on my part, to stay focused on cooking and cleaning for most of the week while right outside my back door there was so much to see and do.

As we wandered along our woodland trail, which is now covered in a deep carpet of colorful leaves, I couldn't help but wonder about those who might have trod these same paths on some other long ago Thanksgiving Day. I want to think that they had a fine feast, too!

Saturday, November 19, 2016

A Warm Fire...

It was a chilly morning here in the Ozarks, following the first, at our house, of the extra-blanket nights, for fall has come late this year.  We enjoyed our breakfast beside a toasty warm fire in the wood-burning stove.  I think Ten Bears in the movie, Dances With Wolves, had it about right.  Talking of simple pleasures before a good fire may be better than anything.

With Ten Bears, it was always more than a while.  There was purpose in everything he did, and I knew he wanted me to stay.  But I was sure of myself.  I would be an excuse and that's all the Army would need to find this place.  I pushed him as far as I could to move the camp.  But in the end, he only smiled and talked of simple pleasures.  He reminded me that at his age, a good fire was better than anything.  Ten Bears was an extraordinary man.
                                                                                           (Dances With Wolves ~ John Dunbar)

Ten Bears portrayed by a "Bully-Good Indian" from my Skookum collection

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Full Moon Rising...

Supermoon, November 14, 2016  ~  According to NASA scientists, this supermoon is the biggest and brightest in almost 70 years.  We won't see another supermoon like this until 2034, so it surely is worth taking a good look.

A supermoon occurs when the moon becomes full on the same day as the perigee, the point in the moon's orbit when it is closest to the earth.  Supermoons generally appear to be 14% bigger and 30% brighter than other full moons. According to NASA,this month's supermoon "becomes full within about two hours of perigee--arguably making it an extra-super moon."

In America, the November full moon is known as a "Beaver Moon," because it arrives at the time of year when fur trappers would hunt the dam-building animals.