Monday, November 24, 2014

The Wood Pile Grows

   It was so warm...in the 60's and nice...that Jeff and I cut and stacked wood this afternoon and the woodshed is nearly full again.  We replenished what we used this past week or so.  (It is so much easier to burn wood than to stack it.)  Don't know if either one of us will be able to move if someone yells 'fire' in the middle of the night but the shed is full again.  The wheelbarrows are full, too...waiting for me to stack that wood tomorrow.  I just couldn't do another 'barrow full today!  Jeff's got most of the pallets cut up but there are more waiting to be taken apart .  We're sort of at a stand-still collecting pallets.  Something is wrong with the Outback...it's started to buck like a bronco!  Jeff and Wally, from next door, think it may need a dose or two of fuel injector cleaner and a couple of bottles of dry gas.  They can't hurt and may help...and that would be a lot cheaper than a trip to the Subaru mechanic.
   The computers speakers weren't plugged in so of course they couldn't work, but even after plugging them in they won't work.  Jeff spent some time trying to figure out why without any luck. May need new speakers.   Jeff also moved one of the big wing-back chairs from the living room into the master bedroom.  It fits perfectly!  I may move an end table and lamp to go next to it.  With an afghan, it will make a great nook to curl up in and read a book before bed.  (I always wanted the tangerine...hell, yes, it's orange...love seat that's in the living room in my bedroom but I've given up on that idea.  The last time I sat on it I couldn't stand up!  It's so comfortable but I sank and needed help to get up.)
  
   
  

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Christmas is A-Coming...Wanted or Not!

Hand crafted holiday decorations
Christmas hats...and bears...and soaps!
   Had a not quite delightful ride to Cooperstown   Friday morning.  
We were  experiencing 'lake effect' precipitation and while  accumulation wasn't anything like Buffalo was getting, it did make Rte 29 South not a fun ride.  I got to the shop without mishap but couldn't get the door open!  The locks were frozen or jammed or something.  I ended up giving the door a solid shove and suddenly they opened!  The two previous days had been without any sales and I was pretty sure...with the weather... yesterday would be the same.  But the lake effect passed and the sun came out and I actually made some sales...including a baseball hat of mine!  I started to take photos of the shop to post on our Facebook page but the batteries in the camera gave out after just a couple!  I'll take more next week when I work again.  

    I decided to knit something for boys...besides baseball themed...and came up with these Christmas vests...fun to make but nasty to have to clean up...with all those yarn ends!! (Fair Isle style on circular needles are always a mess maker!)   Both are size 1 and are done in machine wash and dryable Red Heart acrylic yarn.  They were gathering 

ohhs and ahhs from customers Friday and Saturday but it's a baseball sweater that sold!  Maybe today?  A girl's sweater sold, too.  I think I'll replace that one.

   Got home from the shop Friday and found that Jeff had finally started to move the computer...from the bedroom to what use to be the living room.  (The living room is now a large closet... such a waste.)  Any way, the computer is now next to the front living room window, adjacent to  the kitchen.  The answering machine is right there, too, instead of in the bedroom!  Much more convenient for checking messages when I come in, and maybe I won't let things boil over or burn on the stove since I can now see it from here!  Jeff says I have to clean out the closet here so the wires can be tacked down and not draped from above!  Not looking forward to doing that.  Should clean out the living room, too, while I'm at it.  Oh, he also cleaned the wood stove while I was in Cooperstown.  Even tried to vacuum up after that!  I did the rugs again and all was well.  The wood stove keeps the TV room, kitchen and the living room nice and comfy.  And again, I can see that stove from here so I know when it's time to put more wood on the fire!  The printer doesn't work...I think that may have died of old age, and the speakers aren't working...hooked up wrong? and I'm not sure if Jeff got the wireless connected...but the computer works!!

Oh, there was a parade of fire trucks racing by on Rte 5 the Friday night around midnight.  Seems St. Mary's Church, now called Holy Family, on Main and John Sts in Little Falls, was on fire.  Took a couple of hours for the firemen from Little Falls with help from Herkimer, East Herkimer, Ilion and Salisbury to get the fire out.  Luckily, no one was hurt.  I think a couple of rooms were damaged but not too badly.  Don't know when the church will reopen.  It was always a beautiful building.
  


















Wednesday, November 12, 2014

A Walk in the Country

   Fanny and I went to town this morning to run some errand.  After visiting Hannaford's, the bank...where they always give Fanny a doggie treat, the Post Office, the library and gas station I decided to reward us with a stop at Subway before heading home.  Since it was too early for the mail  I backed into the driveway...right up to the stairs...to unload the groceries and bundle of hard wood I had gotten at Hannaford's and managed to lock Fanny, my purse, and cell phone in the running car.  I walked down to my neighbor's house to see if Wally had something to open a locked car door but no one was home. Massaro's,the florist on Rte 5...about 1/2 mile away... was my next target.  On the way I wondered if Fanny would eat the sub that was on the front seat if she was left alone in the car for too long and rehearsed what I would say to Jeff over the phone to explain the situation.  
   A sleepy looking Jeff soon drove up.  He said he had looked for me at the florist but since he didn't see me (I was inside) went to the house and let the dog out of the car.  She ran...he said, 'slinked' straight into the house.  Then he came back to the florist looking for me.   I rewarded him with a pot of fresh coffee.  When the coffee was gone, Jeff went home to shave and change his clothes.  I fell asleep in my chair by the wood stove and Fanny stretched out on the couch. It had been an exciting morning for all of us.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

And the Score is....

   We live in the country...little house in the little woods,huh?...and every fall we get the annual invasion of field mice.  When I was growing up I could hear them crawling up the beams inside the walls in my bedroom at night on their way to and from the attic/cellar.  Then came the discovery of  D-Con and that stopped...or at least, slowed down.  This year the little mickeys are bolder than ever and aren't bothering with staying inside the walls.  So far this week...THIS WEEK...I've picked up 5 dead or dying mice...3 in the TV room and 2 in the kitchen.  I've added D-con to new places (behind the dryer, under the refrigerator) and while the sounds from inside the walls have stopped, the mice are still here.  The other day I was reading the newspaper while Fanny snoozed on a chair.  She growled and I put down the paper and looked up.  She was in a stare down with a mouse who was between us on the floor.   I said...to the mouse...where did you come from...and went into the kitchen for an empty coffee can...while Fanny jumped over the mouse and ran and hid under the bed.  After scooping up the mouse...who was alive enough to wiggle a little...and going outside to dump it near the wood shed...I lured the dog out from under the bed with a dog treat and words of praise for confronting the mouse.  (The next mouse she cornered herself but let me pick it up...with the coffee can.)  This morning's mouse was dead by the dog's dish.  Whether it died there or Fanny put it there...?  Anyway, the score is now Mice 0 Me 5 (I'm taking credit for the 2 that may be Fanny's discovery.)  Almost time to buy more D-con.
   Last week Jeff told his PT guy enough was enough.  The pain from the exercises were getting unbearable and nothing was helping.  He couldn't sleep or eat!   And while a hot bath probably would have helped, Jeff was afraid if he got into the tub...his is an big old claw-foot job...he wouldn't be able to get out.  Now he's trying to get back to a normal routine but that will take some time.   He went grocery shopping
and got a bone-in ham that he cut it up and we froze.  Jeff's going to use the bone and make split-pea soup...his is the best! 
   In the meantime, I'm sitting by
the wood stove, reading a little,
watching TV s little and knitting a little.  Here are  2 Ladies Flower Hat and Mitten sets ready to go to the

shop.  Instead of a fabric bow, these hats have knitted leaves.  The sets are acrylic and the mittens are done on a US4 making them very dense and warm...and a little difficult to make.  My index fingers don't like getting stuck with the needle points... occupational hazards!   

Thursday, November 6, 2014

November is Gonna Be Different

     November is here with cold damp winds.  Snow has been forecast a couple of times but we've lucked out and we've been spared.  Most of the leaves have fallen and if we can get a couple of days of dry weather we may be able to rent the leaf vacuum and clean the yard but that depends on how Jeff feels.  He's been going for PT for his right leg for about 3 weeks now and sadly, things are getting worse.  The exercises are draining his strength and causing a lot of pain and discomfort...in his leg and his back.  (The injury is over 50 years old...a series of accidents and mishaps from his youth...that weather and arthritis has made worse.  That's why he sometimes drags his right leg and his right knee buckles.)  He doesn't feel like eating afterwards and that messes up his blood sugar adding to his discomfort.  Today he said he's about had it.  There is not much he can do to ease the pain for several days after a session.  His doctor seems to think there is some kind of treatment out there that will help him with the leg and back pain and it's her duty to find it.  Last year's experiment didn't work for long and the steroids really messed up his blood count and this year's isn't doing much better.  And the thing is, Jeff doesn't ask the doctor for this help, she comes up with it all on her own!
     In the meantime, I'm trying not to burn too much wood.  I've bought a couple of bundles of hard wood at the grocery store and use it with what I have in the woodshed.  I've managed to keep the TV room and kitchen warm and the rest of the house comfortable during the day...except this bedroom which just gets cold because it always did.  (The TV room has a 'phantom draft' from when my father built the room that he could never locate but an afghan around my legs takes care of that.)  I stocked the shop well the last time I worked and sales have slacked off so I'm giving my hands a little rest and not knitting like a fool.  I did some adult mittens last week...took all week to do 3 pairs!...and then took 2 days to do a ladies hat!  That's slow for me.  I think I may be developing or redeveloping carpel tunnel syndrome again.  My hands have been going 'needles and pins' and I've started dropping things.  (Don't want to go thru that again.  I think that would be the 3rd time!)  Anyway, I've got another hat going and then I want to do a cowl for the shop before I start working on Christmas presents.  So, unless Jeff feels good and we're working on the wood pile, I'm spending my days sitting by the fire, nice and comfy, knitting, reading and watching TV.  Discovered Wendy Williams and The Price is Right!  And Channel 2 has just started 2.3 with old sitcoms like MASH!  Who needs cable?    

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Someone Forgot to Tell The Garden

   We were suppose to get a frost last week but it never happened. The flower box and pots, green bean trellises, green peppers and squash are still looking good!  And inside the greenhouse....
you can see the tomatoes growing to the ceiling with flowers and fruit!  On the other side there are eggplant, peppers and the big blue bucket has potatoes.  The eggplant has purple flowers and a green eggplant.  It had been purple but turned green...not enough sun?  The temperature inside the greenhouse 
was a warm 68 today (about 8 degrees warmer than outside) and that was without a
a heater inside!
   Jeff tried to dig up the sweet potatoes today but came up with nothing.  Not a single one.  These wouldn't have been the big yams like you get in the grocery store but more like an oversized carrot 
but no luck.  Wish us better luck 
next year.
   Oh, yes, and mentioning carrots,
Funky Carrots
Baby Eggplant
  Jeff pulled some carrots today and we had them for dinner.  Now our carrots are not the long, thin ones but short fat ones and they were sweet and tender!  I 'fried' them...boiled them soft, then sauteed them in butter and olive oil with garlic and onions.  Very nice.  Tomorrow's dinner may include the baby eggplant that he picked, too.  I keep telling him those are  'gourmet' eggplant because they don't have many seeds.  Again sweet and tender!
   Time to get back to my knitting.  Got hats on the needles I'd like to finish so I can take them down with me on Monday.  I don't have to work again after that until Nov.21 and I'd like to stock up a little. Photos tomorrow.



Sunday, October 19, 2014

Winter Already??

   I worked in the shop today...a  cold, wet day with a little snow (!UCK!) and not much business.  I finished the baseball hats I had brought with me...probably the last ones for this year...but didn't do any of the knitting I brought.  There were 3 (yep, count 'em) empty sweater hangers and all the flower hats were gone.  Good thing I had 6 more flower hats with me.  I switched days with another member and have to work again next Monday giving me a week to do a couple of sweater sets.  If the weather cooperates and it rains I can easily do it.  If I have to stack wood, it will be a little more difficult.  There were only 2 Ladies hats left so I'll have to do a couple of them, too.  The rest of the day I spent reading.  It was a nice change.  Would have been better with a pot of hot tea.
    We're suppose to get a hard frost tonight so Jeff picked the rest of the cucumbers and eggplants. Since there are peppers and tomatoes in the greenhouse he left a Coleman lantern lite as a heat source.  In 15 minutes the temperatures went up 10 degrees inside the greenhouse!  He's not sure how long the lantern will stay lite...there's enough fuel but it may lose pressure and eventually go out.  Right now (12:15am) it's been lite for over 3 hours!  If it lasts for a couple of more hours it may be warm enough inside to hold off the frost.  We have to just wait and see.  Wonder what Wally from next door will say about the lighted greenhouse?