Tuesday, September 30, 2008


Did ya ever feel like you needed to go back to work to relax?

I feel like that a lot, however, it's not so much going back to work to relax, but just going. Somewhere. Anywhere. Other than here. Wherever "here" is.

Thursday and Friday I worked until late, like 11-12 hrs a day. Saturday and Sunday I was at my fibery best at the Lamb and Wool Festival at the fairgrounds locally here.

Doesn't that just evoke all kinds of warm and cuddly feelings? Lamb and Wool. mmmmmmmmmmm

It was great. Very relaxing, but not the kind of relaxing I need after life beats me up a bit.

I bought stuff I shouldn't have bought, which while at the time is relaxing and all kinds of immediate gratification-ing, I then have to go back and figure out how to pay for it. Not so relaxing.

Years ago, hubby got me an antique spinning wheel at an estate sale. I was gonna learn to spin. You know, get fleece from, well, fleece bearing critters, and make beautiful designer yarns from which I would knit beautiful sweaters, socks, afghans and all manner of other knitted fun things.
It didn't work. The spinning wheel.

Went online to find a diagram of what it should look like as it was a bit obvious that there were pieces missing. Couldn't find one, so it sat in the corner for years.

Last year at the same festival I found a guy who makes wheels. Well, if he makes them, he could restore them, right? You know, all fix them up and everything?

Cool! He was up to the challenge so I sent him on his way with my little antique wheel. I figured if I never saw him again, it was all good, I was only out a wheel that so far had only taken up space (a premium in my little cabin). If he couldn't fix it I was only out, well, nothing.

So we agreed on a "not to exceed" price and he up the challenge and went home.

Anxiously, I sought out his booth this year to see the results of my challenge. (there were a few emails in between too). There it was. All cleaned up. There were pieces attached to it that weren't there before. He proclaimed success, told me all about what he'd done, how to do this and that to it and sent me on my way with the agreed apon amount in his hands.

And I learned to spin on it. It's not a big spinning wheel, nor is it fancy, but it's worn out, used a lot and very comfortable. It makes this noise while I spin that's reminiscent of an old rocking chair, now that's relaxation!

And life was all good. I was happy. Happy enough to try to further my relaxation by taking a day off from work.

Cleaned up the house (very relaxing to come home to a semi clean house), made some turkey noodle soup from a leftover turkey frame, and made home made rolls. Yummy. Very relaxing.

Today, I'll only probably work 1/2 a day and go with hubby on a road trip, score some serious knitting time.

And there's only one obvious path to this spinning wheel solution. Leave it to me to go backwards on this. First I learned to knit. Now I'm learning to make the yarn I knit with. What's next?

I thought you'd never ask.


Oh, and I found some yarn made from possum fur too. This opens up all kinds of new uses for road kill.
Just sayin'....

Friday, September 26, 2008

A New Toy


Last night, as I pulled into the driveway, what did I see in the back of hubby's truck?

A Snowmobile! Not a new one, but it's new! It's 1979, hardly new, but it was driven twice a year by a little old lady who only took it to church.....

You know the story.

Seriously, the paint on the running boards isn't even worn off yet. Stuff isn't even rusty. The tunnel still has paint on it.

I probably has less than 50 miles on it. But you know what's the best part???

It's ELECTRIC START!! I'll leave you with that for a moment, let it sink in!

Ok. Electric Start. You can't even imagine what electric start +snow machine means to a little old 50 year old lady. Ok little is stretching it. Lady is out of the park, and old? well, that's just ridiculous, but the fact is that I already have one sled, that I can't start cause it's a pull start. Not one of those Fresh-Out-Of-The-Showroom ones that start the instant you start to pull the rope. Nope, this one required triceps the size of Lisa's. Er, I mean, well, you have to be really, really strong to start it, and I never could. Unless it was already warmed up. Which it never was cause Lisa's not here to start it for me, er I mean, cause I could never pull it hard enough to start it to get it warmed up. (add in the layers and layers of restrictive clothing usually accompanied by snow machine rides).

It cost me...... NOTHING!! Well, it cost hubby some sort of trade or something or other, I've learned not to even try to keep track of his horse trading. If I were you, I wouldn't bother either.

Electric Start rocks. Now I don't even have to think about putting my 4x4 gas guzzling truck on the road for the winter. Nope, if my egg won't make it through, my sled will! YAY!

Do they make side cars for sleds? Hmmmm. Wonder what Bu-Dawgh's gonna do?

It does get better, really it does. Know where I'm gonna hang out this weekend? All weekend? From sun up saturday morning, till sundown sunday night weekend?

At the Northern Michigan Lamb and Wool Festival. I will be face down drooling in fiber and yarn and new books and patterns, and needles and, and, and, and.

And I will ride my motorcycle there, cause I am a biker chick (with sticks) and one of the gals in the office is a biker chick too, but her bike is a bit, well, more modern than mine (she has a new 1500 Harley). Mine's, well, not a new 1500 Harley. But's it's all good. Mine will beat hers any day! I'll even bet hers lives in the garage and never see's inclement weather. Mine laughs at rain, sleet, bugs and the errant killer leaf. It also laughs at me once in awhile. I can live with that. When I can't ride my bike anymore, I'll just get on my sled! Ye-hawwwww!

Sleds, Motorcycles, Fiber Festivals, and Bu-Dawghs. Life is good!! Electric Start? Life is REAL GOOD. This was just what I needed to jump start me into the impending fall/winter season.
Bring on the snow.................

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Tree Out Front

My neighbor has this beautiful Sugar Maple Tree. Huge. Gorgeous. Beautiful Tree. Really pretty. And I'm going to cut it down. Once again it has betrayed me.

This really really pretty gorgeous huge tree, every year, this time of year shows it's betrayal by *gasp* turning red. It's really pretty when it turns red, it seems to go branch by branch, from the outside in. But my own personal belief, at least this year, is that it doesn't really need to advertise the fact that summer is in fact, *whisper* "over" *end of whisper*.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Blah, blah, yadda, yadda, yadda, I get it. I know. Summer's over. My dead and dying garden is a testament to that. My closed windows yell it to me. The ferns in the woods shreik at me every time I ride by. The cool crispness of the air on my bike ride to work, and the colors... Well, the colors are really quite cool, everything from pale yellow to deep, dark burgandy. Salmons, oranges, reds, even purples. The air dries up, the leaves show their colors and then fall and walking anywhere produces a crinkle under foot.

Fall does have it's good points. There are the leaves, as previously pointed out, breathtaking. Peak season is in about 2-3 weeks.

The cool crisp air is perfect for getting those last minute projects done, perfect for cutting and stacking firewood. The season seems to inspire the "nesting instincts" of even highly evolved (or less highly evolved) humans. There's the "hurry" to get stuff done.

And there are the bike rides.

O.M.G. You haven't lived until you've ridden on the back roads of N. Mich during peak season. Just gorgeous. Take a break here and there to sit and enjoy the sights, smells and sounds.


it's coming......

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Care and Feeding

Sometimes, in my world, the care and feeding of 2 people takes 5 people to pull it off.
Take this morning, if I didn't have my daughter, The Mouth, to help me I would be running in circles, and riding babies on my bike.
My Dad requires not so much constant care, but pretty much constant supervision. Most of the time this isn't a problem, there is my Mother, The Mouth, and myself, and Hubby, and The Monkey's Mother to make this happen. Piece of Cake.
My 2 year old granddaughter (The Monkey) lives with us, as does her mother. This morning, her mother got called into work early. No, problem, we'll just adjust accordingly. We're holding strong at 4 people to watch 2 people. It's all good. My Mother had to go out of town, ok, we can still do this, there's still 3 people to look after 2 people, and assuming that one has to be on the road from point A to point B, we're still holding at 2 people looking after 2 people. This still works unless they have to switch places, which is what happens regularly.
This morning, after all the calling into work happened and my Mother left. I was at home with the 2 year old, who really, by all intents, just can't be left alone. It wouldn't be good. She'd, I don't know, get into markers or something. She'd probably have Bu-Dawgh tied up in the barn and all colored blue. She'd have a grand old time, but in this day and age, you just don't leave 2 year olds unattended. While normally she'd be sleeping until maybe 9 or 10, this morning, she decided to get up with the sun, so hubby had to watch her while I went out and did chores. Easy enough, put her in the tub, she's fairly well contained and old enough to sit and play.
Hubby can watch her while I go to Dad's and then The Mouth can come to my house and babysit the 2 year old while Hubby goes to work.
I need a chart. I need to speak to someone in Human Resources, because sometimes I don't have enough Human Resources to get this all done. You'd think that 5 people vs 2 people would be a hefty enough ratio to avoid all manner of glitches.

We pulled it off, The Mouth and I, got it all under control and now everyone is where they are supposed to be. I feel like I've misplaced someone, or forgotten to feed someone.
But what would life be like if it was all easy and predictable and stuff? It's always good, never boring, and most of the time, it's even fun.

And, this weekend, is the Northern Michigan Fiber Festival at the fairgrounds here. I can't wait. I've had all those bases covered for months. I will go. I will not be in charge of anyone. Let someone else do this for just 2 short days. I will be face down, drooling in yarn.
Deal with it!

Monday, September 22, 2008

In Which Cleaning Out The Barn is Crappy!

It was a nice weekend. Beautiful. The sun was warm, with a cool breeze and the barn, after a hot summer was getting a bit on the stinky side. Hubby was home (so he could start the skid-steer for me) and I had all afternoon on Saturday to clean out the barn.

Backtrack a bit here. It is in my nature to take the most disagreeable task and get it done first, then move up my list, so by the time I'm ready to quit, the only things left on my list are so easy and so neutral that it's easy to get them done.

That's how it's supposed to work.

Back to the barn.

Obviously, (or maybe not so much if this isn't something you do on a daily basis), one of the most disagreeable tasks in the Cleaning Out Of The Barn festival we do twice a year whether it needs it or not, is actually donning the muck books and getting into the calf pen. The calves themselves are fun. They are convinced that the only reason I'd actually be in the pen with them is to play. They're not small creatures. When they play, sometimes it hurts. Especially when you're old.

So, we're (me and the calves - not hubby), are up to our shins in calf doo doo, with a pitch fork and old gloves shoveling (or pitching) calf crap into the bucket of the skid steer (or bob cat - happy li'l bro?). This is enjoyable, some of the hardest work on the farm is enjoyable because it's soooo physical, and not mental at all and there are actually tangable results. The bob-cat can't get the crap out of there by itself, because it's all one big mat, someone has to break up the mat so the bob-cat can haul it away. So the machinery loosens it, and then I, with my pitchfork and playful calves, fork the broken up hay/doo doo, and other stuff they've drug in there, into the bucket of the bob cat.

This is enjoyable, for the first 10 minutes or so.

Then things start to hurt, and it starts to get annoying getting butted in the butt by the calves whose only mission in life is to play. And it is annoying when you hoist a pitchfork full of cow crap into the air and have it fall off the fork. And it's annoying when hubby is laughing at me. And it's really annoying when the skies cloud over and start to rain, which makes things get a bit slickery. This isn't like horse crap. Horse crap you can throw on the lawn, kick it around and eventually it goes away. This doesn't go away. And it's waaaay to hot to put it on the garden (hot being a chemical term in this application). This needs to be hauled a long way away from where human noses are, put into a pile and then let set to "cook" for a year or two, then it will be nice black dirt.
And once again, I swear that I'm going to do this every other day, or at least once a week, so I don't have to do a marathon session twice a year. But I won't. It will take me that long to quit hurting.
And I actually put it on my list to figure out how to make bio-fuel out of this stinky stuff.
On a side note. We got frost. I don't know when. I'm going with sometime last week, at night. But it killed my tomatoes. Grrrr. Usually I get a heads up on these things, that's how distracted I've been lately. Usually someone from Southern California will tell me we're expecting frost, I'll deny it, then I'll hear it on the news. That and I can usually feel it coming. Oh well, so much for the Over Wintering The Tomatoes And Peppers experiment. No reason now to hurry on the greenhouse. The lettuces still look good and the peppers that were covered by leaves... are still ok, but the tomatoes are gone. I have room in the house for the lettuces and the peppers, so I'll start hauling them in.
Tonight, I'll get all of my pots filled with dirt (for spring seed starting) and find a place in the barn for them. This serves two purposes, it gets all of the planting stuff off the deck to make room for the firewood, and I'll have my dirt already in the spring. It's hard to find dirt to start seeds in March or April when it's under 3 or 4 feet of snow and frozen under that. This way, I'll have it already in the pots, just bring it in, let it defrost and then plant away!
Oh, and, out wandering yesterday... I found a whole gob (lots and lots!!) of grapes. So I gathered them up and now have to figure out how to make wine. That will be an experiment, but look at it this way, the next time I have to do a marathon crap forking session, I can ease the aches and pains by getting smashed on a bit of home brew!
Life on the farm is never boring. But it's alllll good!

Thursday, September 18, 2008


I've come to the conclusion that "they" are not all that smart.
"They" have a death wish. I think that "they" do not fully comprehend the effects "their" lives have on others. "They" are secure in "their" own little world and believe that "they" deserve the space that "they" occupy.

Take last night.......

Hubby and I went for a nice long (read...cold) bike ride through the surrounding villas, on back roads, front roads, side roads, basically we went all over (and at one point under).

On one of these back roads (or it might have been a side road, can't really tell sometimes) one of "them" decided to make an appearance. Actually, there were several of "them" but only one of "them" had any effect on me. One of "them" saw me coming. One of "them" decided that it would be fun to beat me at my own game. And one of "them" looked me in the eye and said "Bring It". (I actually heard "them" say this).

OK, I know a challenge when I am confronted with it, so I did.
Bring it.
I really had no choice if I wanted to walk away with my head held high (or even walk away, as it were). There we were, racing side by side, down the road, break neck speeds were reached. G's were maxed out, I'm pretty sure at one point I was air born, what with all the wind underneath my wheels. It was a moment where history could have been made.
Eyes met. He looked at me. I looked at him. (I think it was a him, but at those speeds who can really tell). Challenges were non verbally issued. I could feel his breath, I'm sure he could hear my screams! Moments turned into eons and in the end, I emerged the victor. Yup. I won.

Now... what the heck! I've never had one of "them" challenge me for road space in this manner before. I pretty much make a habit of this not happening. I avoid it, and"them". But it did happen. And, I reiterate... (see I can use big words once in awhile)... I won. That's how I roll. I must win. We must not let "them" see weakness.

I won, and I did not end up eating venison last night, nor did he (or the road) end up eating me!

Walking To Work

I was going to walk to work this morning, you know, walk and knit, walk and knit, walk and knit, and kick through leaves. AND RELAX!! But then the coffee didn't brew in time.
I can still make it though, if I can find my backpack. Nope. ok, plan B. I'll just use the Sling It Over My Shoulder bag that I used to use before I got my backpack. Ok, all ready.

Now, where are my de-structions for my knitting? Oh crap. Can't find those either. Why isn't the curling iron hot? Did I remember to do chores. Still no coffee.

So I'll drive, I still have some gas in my little car anyway. And since I already told Bu-Dawgh that we were "gonna go fer a..." he was not gonna settle for me riding my bike. Ok, I hope my de-structions are at work.

Now, back to the coffee. And the curling iron. Sigh. It's gonna be one of those days. It's already been one of those weeks.

Fall tends to be like this, there's always last minute scrambling to get summer projects done, get the farm ready for winter, get myself mentally ready for winter, get the house ready for winter, it's almost like busting through cement walls but yet still holding back and holding on to the warmer weather.

Whoever wrote "Summertime, and the livin' is easy" (I actually do know who wrote that, but can't remember it right now, it's from Porgy and Bess, anyway... this person did not live on a farm. Add into that the mental "nesting" urges that no doubt kept out hunter-gatherer forbears alive and you have a bustle of activity that drains even the most sturdy of us.

Time for that last bonfire of the season? Well, that would be nice except I never got the firepit cleaned out and moved from the beginning of the season! I guess we could have it in the driveway.

Do you see where I'm at with all of this? It's a very busy time of year, usually at work I can plan on taking a few afternoons off a week to do my canning... but not this year. Super busy at work. Super busy at home. Super busy on the farm. And no time for me. Poor me. I'll take some cheese with my whine!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Riding To A Crisp

This morning's commute was a bit "crispy". But it was great. The clear crisp air. The crisp leaves already on the roads. The crisp leaves as they're falling and they hit you in the face. Getting hit in the face with a leaf and saying "ouch" to yourself before realizing that being hit in the face with a leaf shouldn't really elicit that sort of response is something best kept to yourself.

Blondie came up this weekend from The Big City Where She Lives And Works. But she had to go back early before the hurricane hit. Seriously, that's what she said. (N. Mich is our locale, just for reference here). I was a bit stunned by her response when I asked her how long she was going to stay. Stunned enough to say something to the effect of "Just what do you think is gonna happen when the hurricane hits?" (again, N. Mich). She said she didn't know, but didn't want to be on the road when "it" happened (in N. Mich). It happened to be raining, quite a bit actually, so I told her to look outside. The hurricane has hit. This is it. This is all you get. You'll have to find your drama somewhere else, sorry.

No lack of respect intended to those who have really faced the hurricane, I understand they can be quite the deal. But up here, we get the air pressure changes, and some rain, equal to a good 2 day, well, rain storm. Usually without the thunder and lightening, just damp, rainy and yucky. But we have withstood it and will see another day.

Yesterday I took half a day off to wander out into my hurricane devastated garden (it rained, a lot). And pick a 5 gal bucket full of tomatoes. And can them. Yummy.
Today I will walk the same walk in search of jalapenos, and I will slice, dice and freeze them. Tomorrow, it's a crap shoot, all I know at this point is I'm getting my hair cut again. And then there's the obligatory food fest at work, so I won't be able to ride my bike, crock pot being breakable and rather large and all. (My stylist appreciates it when I don't show up with my helmet tucked under my arm). I think she likes to think I appreciate her skills for at least a little while before I subject the hair to the helmet.

Hubby picked up some of these really cool head sets that attach to your helmet and then with wires, attach to the walkie talkie on the handlebars. This is too cool. It will be even cooler when he takes it all out of the bag and gets the whole system set up. No more wireless bike riding for me, nope! We're wired for sound now! Look out baby bros #2 and 4. October will find us out riding, and, able to bull %&^*(* each other at the same time. A talent we have all but perfected!

On my current knitting project, The Sunrise Circle Jacket, I'm finding that I will run out of yarn. Yay. Do I try to find a close substitute to finish it off (hand-dyed, purchased a year ago, not much chance of locating the same thing), or do I go all bold and daring and knit 1/2 of it in a totally different color.

I'll ask the girls at work. And The Mouth, they'll set me straight. I have 5 different yarns to choose from that I have enough of to finish this project.

Stay tuned, now that the hurricane is over we'll resume our regularly scheduled routine!

Friday, September 12, 2008

So I'll Sit Right Down

And have another beer in Mexico.....
Ok, I believe I'll do that. And in another universe somewhere that might actually work.

Just a few smatterings here (I like to use long technical words, it messes people up).

Have a loooonnnnggg weekend coming up, and I don't mean that in a good way. Saturday, I'm working. Gasp! What's that about. The only day it's not supposed to rain for the next quite a few.

Even up here the hurricanes have their way with the weather. I'm sure it's a drop in the bucket, but we still get the air pressure changes, the rain and I still feel the achy joints.

My personal opinion is that the high pressure systems that we normally get from Canada and the hurricane-isms that we are getting from the south are converging over the lakes and having a mighty melt-down. You can almost hear them arguing. Either that or it's the thunder.

So, maybe rethinking the Mexico thing, because of Ike and all.

Sunday, we'll be up on the roof (probably, depending on how much water-age is falling from the sky - steep angles and tin roofs combined with water-age makes for some interesting times, add a bit of thunder and lightening and it's just way more fun than I can deal with). And then..... after the roof is done, I can get hubby concentrating on my greenhouse.


He likes to think that he can take breaks and go fishing every now and then. And it is salmon fishing season, and we do like our salmon. Salmon patties are really yummy on a cold winter night. So I guess if he wants to go fishing it's ok with me.

But when he gets back, and the roof is done.....

The Mouth now has a boyfriend, which might seriously hamper her plans to move to Alaska in the spring. And I've been accused of being narrow minded, and not only that, but being narrow minded while in possession of a gun. I like to think I've always been fairly tolerant of all the idiots my girls have brought home. I haven't met him yet, so I don't know what kind of metal he's made from. But apparantly he's self sufficient, doesn't live with his mommy, and actually has a job. Don't laugh, that's a plus up here.

Hubby brought home a compound bow this past week.
He handed it to me.
He told me to pull it and see what I thought.
I did.
It was easy, a lot easier than I thought it would be. (45-55 lb)
I think he has plans to take me bow hunting this year.
Could be interesting.
I'm not real good with a bow. Add an arrow and things might get dangerous, but that's weeks away.
I'd rather use my .22

Well, that's about all that's happening in my neck of the woods. Still have more tomatoes to can, and a bunch of dirt to gather up. I like to start all of my seeds in the winter (feb. or so), and it's really really hard to find dirt to start them in, when you have to dig through 4 foot of snow, and then need a pick axe. It's lots better to gather up the dirt in the fall, when it's a bit warmer. I'll store it in buckets, and pots in the barn until it's time to plant stuff, then bring it in. Or, hopefully I'll have the greenhouse and I can do this all year round!

What fun!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


My brother from Southern California (where they really don't have any idea at all what frost in Sept. is all about) texts me yesterday and told me we were in for a frost.
Ahem. Excuse Me? Frost? I'm in denial. It's only mid-Sept. And you're in So. Cal!
Oh, yeah. It's mid-Sept. actually could happen any time.

But come on! I just put the garden in yesterday!

Ok, whatever you say, baby bro.

And I'm watching the news and weather and knitting last night (really cool pattern in blues, teals, greens, purples - caribbean colors...) and what do I see? Frost advisory! Geez! A girl can't catch a break.

So I scrambled outside, where it was actually starting to feel a bit "frosty" and covered up all of the tomatoes, peppers and lettuces I could get to and went inside feeling all good about myself. The baby snakes that I found under the tarps weren't feeling so good about themselves. Probably wishing they'd found something else to burrow under.

Here's the magic question:

Did it actually frost?

Remember Murphy?

Here's the answer:

Of course not. I covered everything. If I hadn't, then it would have frosted and possibly frozen, but it's all good. We were apparantly at dew point, so even a fraction of a temperature would have resulted in a smattering of the white stuff. But we're good now for another couple of days anyway.

Got BUNCHES of tomatoes picked and into the dehydrator. I put salt and basil or oregano on them, they are just yummy in the winter. And others with just salt. They're just as good, reconstituted in spaghetti sauce.. and they don't take up as much room as the canned variety does.

Not much hope for getting a lot done tonight, gotta work late, but maybe I'll finally get the greenhouse plans done and roped off. Also have to convince hubby to bring the bobcat/skidder (happy li'l bro?) over and while we're cleaning out the calf pen, he can scrape a few layers of soil and sod out of where I plan to pour cement.
This project just might happen!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Transporting a Cow Via An Egg!

Went to the butcher to pick up the cow yesterday and he had the nerve to laugh at my "truck" (which is really a geo metro). Since I was picking up a whole cow, sans skin and bones, it turned into quite a feat for my little egg. The back was sitting on the tires.

Egg not happy.

Egg not like to go up hills loaded down like that, but while it moaned and groaned and whined about it, we did make it home.

Bu-Dawgh happy, he got a few new bones, with meat attached.

Ter happy, lots of meat in the freezer

Freezer happy. Totally full, doesn't have to work as hard.

Kids happy. Too much meat to put in the freezer, have to weed out all of the old meat (which goes to the kids).

Hubby happy, he got a slow cooked sirloin tip roast with mashed potatoes and gravy and home grown asparagus for dinner. Also, homemade bread.

Chickens happy, they got left over asparagus and potato peelings, they even gave me a few eggs for my efforts!

Ter happy, we like farm fresh eggs.

Ter happy, got left over sirloin roast and gravy for lunch today.

Hubby happy, he got left over sirloin roast and gravy for lunch today.
Butcher happy, probably still laughing at my "truck".
Girls at work happy, when Ter gets a new cow, girls at work get a food fest!

Seems like everyone's happy except the egg!
This afternoon..... more canning of the tomatoes shall ensue. Tomorrow, I go back to 12-14 hrs at work, ugh.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Strawberry Jam and Pouring Cement

Got lots and lots of strawberry jam canned this weekend. Now I can expect my brothers to be knocking on my door. Pretty sad. Oh well, if they want to come all the way here to get yummy homemade strawberry jam, they will just have to put up with going for a bike ride!

Got more tomatoes canned. These will be yummy in spaghetti sauce, chili and goulosh in the middle of winter.

Got laundry all done and hung out. And it rained. Good thing hubby likes the smell of rained on laundry. Either that or he doesn't know where I keep the dryer and he's good with that!

Got BUNCHES of knitting done, not on my festival sweater, cause I well, lost the pattern and had to reorder it, but on a new pattern that I've had yarn for forever. It's done in blues, teals, greens and a touch of purple. Sunrise Circle jacket. Want to have it done for festival (in 3 weeks!) so I can find some really cool buttons to go with it.

Got NO cleaning done, but that's ok, I'm very ok with that.

Got the greenhouse plans moved up to the front burner, now to scrounge the materials that I need that I don't have.
#1 being enough cement to not only put the aquarium on, but the whole addition. That will be the biggest thing. I'm going to keep a running total on everything we spend on this, just to have an idea. People LOVE to hear about others' recycling and using up stuff, as long as it looks nice before, during and after. Usually not possible. If it was, there would be a long long line of people waiting to get on the "green" remodeling shows. Those people and sponsors usually have the money to make it look nice. I'll make it look nice, but just having the stuff to use laying around doesn't fare well in certain others' eyes.

Don't care!
Here's a rundown of what we'll need:

  • I have the logs already (no cost, yet, will cost some for the gas for the sawmill to flatten the tops and bottoms).
  • Already have most of the windows, still scrounging there.
  • Already have the framing and roofing (all left over from other projects), will still need some nails and screws.
  • And we have a door. (nice sliding glass door, scrounged from a neighbor!).
  • Have the cement blocks already that we'll use for the "base of this project". Can't put the logs that close to the ground, they'll rot.
  • And, we'll cover the blocks with leftover manufactured stone from other projects. If we don't have enough, I know how to split stone and lay it up with mortar, and we certainly have enough rocks in this gravel pit!
  • Have the stain, sealer and chinking left over.
  • The dirt for the greenhouse is free, we make it every day!
  • And the lumber for the shelves and containers is already here, already sawed out, again, from another project.
  • Oh, and the construction equipment to flatten out the floor? Done. Hubby's got all of that and he's itchin' to use it.
  • Again, will take gas and diesel. That may end up being our biggest expense!
  • We have the ability and materials to run electricity out there, and plumbing if I decide to do that.
I know we can't do this for totally "no cost" due to the fact that we'll need nails, screws, gas, and electricity, but we'll do it for a heck of alot less than most. If we have to buy anything major it will be the cement, and I'm willing to bet we can work out a deal there too. Have an old cement mixer that used to be my dad's and before that, my grandpa's. It's kind of a pain to use, but the history makes it worthwhile.

I LOVE scrounging, and the best scrounging sites in the world are your local freecycle groups. We have 6 of them here in an area that I would consider driving.
Now, gotta start scrounging again, but first, gotta go to the butcher's and pick up our fall beef. Yummy! I smell a pot roast tonight, with home made bread...

Friday, September 5, 2008

Yay, It's Friday!! (revisited)

So I didn't jump out of bed this morning and do the happy dance. It was raining. Even though us gardener and farmer types like the rain from time to time, it causes a bit of pain around the jointages. Happy dancing is not conducive to painful jointage.

Besides I stayed awake waaay too long last night and didn't really feel like getting out of bed at all, even if it were the last day of the week. I untangled all of the yarn for my next project last nght. All of it. This is really cool yarn, Trendsetter from Venus, in pinks, silvers, golds, oranges, greens... I know, it sounds hideous, but really it's cool! See it pictured to the left. (I think it's left)

For awhile now, I've been having difficulty determining left from right. I finally know why this is. It has nothing to do with dyslexia, add, adhd, ocd, or any other symbols. It has to do with the fact that if you're typing "right" you start with your left hand. If you're typing "left" you start with your right hand. This just totally mixes me up. Totally. I have to actually type it in my brain to get it right. And then it's just a crap shoot. I've gotten it wrong more than I've gotten it right. Or left. Anyway, I've not beat the odds, they've beaten me. On this one anyway.

Blondie got a puppy.

And The Mouth is "keeping" it for her until tomorrow when we'll meet her in another town to do the official custody exchange.

She's not even really all that cute. (hideous has been one term heard lately). Except that she's a puppy and puppies are cute. And she does puppy things and most of the puppy things that puppies do are cute. She's part yorkie and part mini poodle. And I for one will be glad to ship her down the road. Not that I don't cuddle, or play with, or enjoy watching her terrorize someone else's toes.

So tomorrow I will spend with Blondie and The Mouth. They, under some crazy notion, have decided that they can gang up against me to force me to go to the Dr. I have too much anxiety, they say. I have too much stress, they say. I forget things. I need to find out if this is menopause or if it's something else, they say.

This is what I say. I have a kid in Iraq whom I haven't heard from in over a week. I have another living with me with her 24 lb tropical storm. I have a Father who needs constant care. I have a farm that also thinks it needs constant care. I have one who told me she quit smoking and now it appears, she didn't. I have another who takes in any and all stray critters, and then just dumps them on me to "take care of" until we can get them to their rightful and future owners. I have a full time job. I have a part time job. And.. I have 2 well meaning-ed, but irritating blondes who think this is too much for me to handle and think I need to go to the Dr. I'm not really sure what this is all supposed to accomplish, but tomorrow, with the two of them together, they're gonna find out just how frail and fragile I am. And I am NOT going to the Dr. until I'm convinced myself that it's necessary. And at which point I need them to tell me what to do and when to do it, I will go find me a house boat, drive it down to the gulf of mexico and wait for the next hurricane to take me away. Hope I can find one big enough for my motorcycle!

So there, I have spoken, deal with it!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Yay, It's Friday!!

Jumped out of bed with a smile in my toes this morning. Danced around the room. Joyful, Gleeful, not at all cognizant of what was actually going to happen.
"What are you so happy about"? Hubby asked.

"It's Friday, it's Friday, do you know what that means?"

Do you know what he said? How he actually had the nerve to answer my question? It was a simple question: "Do you know what that means? (that, being the fact that it's Friday with a whole new upcoming weekend". He answered like this:

Sit down, I know you're going to be floored. You'll likely need CPR at the rudeness and unkindness of his answer.

He merely looked at me like I'd grown a 3rd head and said: "It's only Thursday".

I'm the first one to admit that one of his greatest faults is not knowing what day of the week, or usually what month it is, so my initial reaction was to go with that, knowing that he was, of course, wrong. But the calendar confirmed it. A look at another calendar raspberried it right in my face. The phone concurred, even the danged computer laughed at me with a sort of disdain. (stupid computer).
But I can roll with that. I'll just redo the dance all over again tomorrow morning, and heaven help the person who tries to take me down again. Not gonna happen. I'll go out and ask the cows, they'll say anything to get me to feed them!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

I Think It's Going To Rain Today

With apologies to Bette Midler, or Bonnie Tyler, or whoever sang that song.
But, I rode my bike to work, and I hung out laundry so that pretty much clinches it.

Oh, and I didn't bring my sweatshirt either, so definitely, I'll be riding home in the rain.

That's good though, don't want to go so far as to actually expect it, even though we need it. Badly. I really didn't do all of this on purpose, the riding of the bike, hanging of the laundry, forgetting of outer covering, it wasn't really a blatant act of defiance. Not really a ploy to actually make it rain. I'm sure that's how it will be viewed, by the beings that control the rain.

So, let's say it does rain. Oh boo hoooo, my wet laundry will get wetter, and so will I.

boo hoo hoooooo,

If it rains, oh, how will I cope? The tomatoes, the peppers, the corn and potatoes, all of the things that depend on either me or someone else to water them, what will they do without their every other day scheduled watering? OH PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE don't rain.

(tee hee heee, think they bought it?).

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Loooong Weekend

What did everyone do this weekend? I was very very busy, but if I had to name what I actually did, I couldn't.

Hubby went fishing. I didn't. Hubby went diving. I didn't. We did take a real nice relaxing road trip on the bikes.

I did laundry. I did dishes. I swept and washed floors. I worked on Bu-Dawgh training. And I knitted. And this afternoon if I can get home from work early enough, I will can some tomatoes.

2 of my daughters are under the impression that I'm doing too much, and losing it. They think I need to slow down and relax (when I asked one of them what would I do if I walked in the door and decided to relax, just what would that entail, and she laughed. Still trying to figure that one out.) They think I need to call and make a Dr. apt to find out why I've gone over the edge (and I'm still trying to find the edge that I supposedly went over). And I'm not liking this. At all. I don't want someone to tell me I have to go to the dr. What's next, a call to remind me to go to the bathroom? I see this ending badly. Nope. I fought long and hard for my independance, and these 2 just want to whisk it away from underneath me.

Always been an advocate of "identify the enemy then go balls to the wall and eliminate it". Just deal with it. Make it go away. Well, step one has been identified. It's menopause, plain and simple. Every woman on the face of the planet will have to deal with this at one time or another, and I'm not aware of a single fatality (other than husbands strangling them in their sleep...). Mother nature has been dealing this hand of cards from the beginning of time and it's just another thing to "deal with". So, the enemy has been identified, now we start to fight (since elimination is unlikely, we just deal). I probably will make that dr. apt, if only to shut the two of them up, and also to confirm what I already know. The Change Is Apon Me (or upon, or whatever).
Hormone therapy? Not likely. But we'll see, have to make that phone call first, and I can't remember where I put that phone!