Monday, August 29, 2011

Good Night Irene

A few minutes ago every tree was excited, bowing to the roaring storm, waving, swirling, tossing their branches in glorious enthusiasm like worship. But though to the outer ear these trees are now silent, their songs never cease. ~ John Muir

More appropriately it was a few hours ago every tree was excited.  Irene hit us with less rainfall than expected by half but the winds made up for it.  The flooding that did occur has now crested and the river levels are slowly starting to drop. 

In my county 2264 homes have had their electric restored, 11440 people are still without. Other counties are in a similar situation.
The electric company originally said it would be back on by 10 PM last night.  They have since updated that to 4:30 today.  One reason for our outage is this….

Two poles broken off at ground level will need to be replaced.  However, there are bigger problems further out from this.

After every storm the sun will smile; for every problem there is a solution, and the soul's indefeasible duty is to be of good cheer. ~ William R. Alger

I am lucky as I have a generator.  It doesn’t power the whole house and well but is does keep my fridge and freezers in good shape with some energy left to power the computer.  We plugged the tv and cable box in but there is no cable so if the kids get too bored they will have to watch a Netflix movie.

We stored some water and can easily make trips to the artesian well to fill up jugs.  The percolator coffee pot smells fantastic while brewing and makes a great cup of coffee.  The man likes his coffee as soon as he rolls out of bed which is why we switched to the programmable drip pot but I think once it bites the dust we won’t buy another.  We had friends for dinner.  She supplied the one thing I forgot…paper plates!

We walked outside after dark and it was like the sky was trying to make up for our lack of power by adding extra stars.  Then this morning, it was 50 degrees with a slight breeze, absolutely beautiful !  Of course human nature will make me much less agreeable in four days if the electric doesn't go back on!  Hope everyone came through okay.   

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Time Passages

Perceiv'st thou not the process of the year,
How the four seasons in four forms appear,
Resembling human life in ev'ry shape they wear?
Spring, first, like infancy, shoots out her head,
With milky juice requiring to be fed: ...
Proceeding onward whence the year began,
The Summer grows adult, and ripens into man....
Autumn succeeds, a sober, tepid age,
Not froze with fear, nor boiling into rage; ...
Last, Winter creeps along with tardy pace,
Sour is his front, and furrowed is his face. ~ Dryden

It has been rudely brought to my attention that Summer is quickly passing us by.  The leaves are changing from the chartreuse of the Spring buds to dark green, olive and even shades of red, yellow and orange are popping up.  The temperature hit a high of 75 yesterday and this morning it was 49.  Daylight is getting shorter.  Most of the school shopping is done for the kids to start on Sept. 7.  I sold off more than half my sheep.  We took our chickens to the butcher.  The pigs and turkeys are plumping up and will be leaving soon.  They hay is ordered and just needs picking up.  And canning is at a high pace.

It is funny how we process time.  We realize it is passing but to think that 1982 (when I graduated from high school) was 29 years ago astounds me!  I have four kids ranging in age from soon to be 28 to 15 and a grandson...but 29 years ago!!!!  Inconceivable!!!  It seems like yesterday but then again so long ago.  And in 29 years I will be 76 years old.  That seems so far in the future but it too will pass quickly.

They years run too short and the days too fast ~ from the song Time Passages

So what has happen in the passage of time since I last wrote….I had my niece and her family visit for a week.  It rained a lot of the time she was here.  We did get some hiking in along the falls but didn't get to attend the fair with her. 

Due to several recent storms some of the trails were impassable and others clearly told you what to do...

Several days after she left we went to the fair and managed to see everything in between some showers.  I keep saying I am going to enter something but then I never do...procrastination at it's best.  While there all I could think of was  Charlottes Web when trying to convince Templeton to go to the fair they sing  "A fair is a veritable smorgasbord" 

We had our blooming onion and left the other stuff alone.  The kids of  course consumed their way through the fair.  Thankfully no one got sick on any of the rides...or more importantly...the ride home!

Sir T, #1 and Baby O came for a visit and will be back again on the 2nd.  He is getting soooo big.  They came up to look at some houses so they can move home.  They went to the one house to await the Realtor but she never showed up.  The tenant said no showing had been scheduled.  They called about the second house and no showing was scheduled there either.  They called the Realtor they were dealing with and she said " I have to be perfectly honest...I just forgot"! They took time to drive three hours to meet her for nothing.  Thankfully they didn't have to pay for a hotel like someone else might have.  Needless to say she is no longer their Realtor   

My SIL bought my brother, the man and I concert tickets for our birthday.  So Friday found us at Bethel Woods, site of Woodstock, 

listening to the Doobie Brothers and Lynyrd Skynyrd.  

I don't drink often but her friend made some kick  @ss jello shots which we quickly consumed before entering the gates.  Stopping at the beer stand before we took our seats, the guy said they would make over $10,000 on beer alone that night.  At $10 a can I can believe it.  We got home about 1:30.  The man had to go to work Saturday so we were up at 6 which made for a long day....but it was worth it.

The garden has suddenly decided to grow!  I picked my first green beans of the season two days ago but it is now covered in small beans and blossoms.  The tomatoes are finally ripening.  However, I have a rabbit inside the garden fence.  As the garden is almost 1/4 acres he keeps eluding me but I find his half eaten tomatoes and cabbage.

Not much fiber work has been done. I downloaded all the classic books  on the Nook and I have been working my way through Tom Sawyer, Little Women, Little Men, Gulliver's Travels, Robinson Crusoe, Heidi, Lorna Doone etc.  My morning cup of coffee on the deck has been noisier than usual as the Tennessee Pipeline if adding another line  about a mile away and the sound travels right down the river valley.  

And now that more time has passed I have to get back into the kitchen and finish canning or time will find me with rotten tomatoes!

Wednesday, August 03, 2011


Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.  ~Sam Keen

The weather has been back and forth, hot with high humidity to a day where we didn't get out of the 70’s.  Rain has been sufficient and the garden is beginning to produce.  I think millipedes are eating and leaving brown “scars” on my cucumbers making them unable to be used for pickles.  Unfortunately the green beans are going to come in at the same time as the tomatoes.  We use a  lot of tomato products so tomatoes will always come first.   I went to the farmers market and bought hot peppers, cucumbers, green peppers, green beans, and tomatoes.   I canned the green beans and now if I don’t get time to do my green beans we will have dried beans from them.  I got 18 pints of B&B pickles,  25 pints of green beans, 17 pints and 9- ½ pints of tomato soup, 4 pints and 16- 1/2 pints of Cowboy Candy, froze green peppers, had a stuffed pepper dinner and I still have a box of tomatoes to do today.

The rest of the garden is doing pretty good, even if it seems a 
little behind last years.

My blackberries had pollination problems so no jelly/pie filling from them this year.  But the abundance of elderberry, pears and apples will make up for their loss.

Time has been spent running for the kids, pickup/drop off their friends or to pick up/drop them off at work.  #2 son is working at a canoe/raft livery and #2 daughter has been doing a lot of babysitting.   I dog sat a friends pooch, driving to and from 3x a day, while she spent a week in Cape May.  Next year someone else gets to do the honors while I head off with her.  When not working/gardening/mowing/cleaning etc we are fishing and swimming.  Knitting and spinning are almost non existent right now as I have been reading a lot more.  All and all a pretty good summer so far.

Today my favorite niece is coming to visit for several days and the county fair starts on Friday so we will be busy.  And life gets even better because next weekend #1, Sir T and Baby O are coming for a visit.