Friday, July 4, 2014

The Fourth of July!

   Today started wet...or yesterday ended wet, anyway it rained and reminded me how much I did not miss camping in the rain.  I think you must be young to enjoy that coz the kids in the 
next-house-down-the-road-and-up-the-hill had another the rain...last night complete with fireworks...this time rockets and cherry bombs...that sent the dog back under the bed.  That part of the party didn't bother me. Around 1am, it was the pickup truck  parked along the curve of the road facing my house with the high beams...or maybe a spotlight...shining across the field and lighting up my yard and house that woke me up. Were we being invaded by aliens???   Then at 2:55am a loud, angry male voice woke me when  it told someone in no uncertain terms to get in the truck or else followed by a quick and loud automotive getaway and a pair of headlights racing around the curve and up the road.  Voices do carry on the wind, folks.
   Yesterday the Forester met it's end.  Jeff was driving when the brakes failed.  He couldn't find a leak so he filled it up with break fluid and we took it to Cole/Marvis.  Unfortunately, it was more serious than just a burst breakline.  The frame had rusted 4 places...and was holding together by threads.  A serious pothole could cause the frame to break apart!  Our only choices were junking it or selling it for parts.  Marty Kucerak at MK Auto Sales on Rte 5 was the first to suggest Hillslide Auto Repair as a possible buyer.  Seems he buys, reconditions and sells Subaru. We visited and Jeff was impressed.  We're going to use the Forester as a down payment on an 2004 Imprezza.  Since the trailer hitch will fit the Outback, Jeff had the guys at Cole/Marvis remove it from the Forester while they had it on the lift.  We'll have it put on the Outback and he'll be back hauling pallets and compost/dirt with the trailer and I still won't have a trailer hitch on the car I drive!  In the meantime, it be a little car with 2 drivers in the little house in the little woods.  Maybe more gas economical?
   I ended June in the shop by selling 2 baby sweater sets so I started one.  Unfortunately, it's in my now least liked I have to force myself to work on it.  Luckily, a size 9 months doesn't take too long to knit.I have just the body to finish today.  I guess it's time to put away the fancy yarns and get back to the basic pink sweater sets...since they're what's selling!
   Today would have been my dad's 106th birthday.  When I was little, I thought the parades and fireworks were for his birthday! We always had a party for him and he enjoyed the fuss for the day.  I found several photos I tried to scan and post here but printer wouldn't cooperate.  I'm afraid the machinery is getting old and wearing out.  Anyway, Happy Birthday, Tony!  Miss you.


Sunday, June 29, 2014

Oh, What A Beautiful Morning!

    Today seems like the perfect day...sunny and warm with a nice breeze.  Let's hope it lasts all summer! Sounded like the kid (he graduated from high school yesterday) down-the-road-and-up-the-next-hill had a great party last night.  Lots of hooping and hollering, I think they may have had their home-made slip-n-slide going, bonfire, music, fireworks.  Fanny hide in the other bedroom even after party quieted down around 4 am (I woke up when they put the bonfire out...the wind carried the smell of wet burnt wood).  Their slip-n-slide looks pretty neat...plastic covered slope down to a dug out swimming hole in the creek. Sounds like a pump is used to pour water on the plastic from the creek.  Nothing like your own Water Safari ride in the back yard!  It's suppose to be hazy, hot, and humid the next few days so they should be using it a lot. 
   The ophthalmologist, Dr. Russo, at Bassett was very nice: my eye is not infected, it's an airborne allergy; use eye drops...don't use the antibiotic cream my MD prescribed; got an Rx for new glasses and I will see Fran Baggetta this week to have them made in Herkimer; but I do have to see a surgeon and have the lesions removed from around the right eye, especially the small one on the upper lid that weeps and bleeds from time to time.  That one has to be biopsied, too.  Got an appointment to see the surgeon on July 25th in Cooperstown.  Hope the State is finished resurfacing Rte 28 by then.  We had to wait in line about 10 mins each way.  If we were hot in the car, wonder how the flag person was feeling?
   I found out why I can't download photos...the MAGIX Photo Manager program wasn't installed on my pc...or it was and then removed when there was a virus or something. Anyway, it's not there, the CD is cracked and the company is nonresponsive. Anybody got a Jazz camera with that program and willing to lend the photo manager cd? 

Friday, June 27, 2014

And The Garden Grows

   Jeff's been busy with boxes for the garden.  Last week he built boxes for 3 sides of and in the middle of the bean tower, another 4x4  for a space in the garden and even made a large flower box for me and we moved dirt from the big boxes out back to them. With both of us filling wheelbarrows and moving dirt the new boxes were filled quickly.  Jeff planted cucumbers, zucchini and eggplant, and cantaloupe in the bean tower, and sweet potatoes in the new 4x4 box in the garden.   Then he tipped the big box over to empty it and moved it, rolling it on logs to the garden where we'll refill it with dirt from the second big box which will then be moved next to it...end to end.  The third big box will be put in the garden from the apple tree towards the sitting area.  I think that leaves room for one more 4x4 box.  I know the herbs will go in one of the big boxes and I hope the ground cherries get their own box.  The tomatoes are doing well...and they are from seed!  Most have flowers and the plants are stocky and lush.  The peppers have flowers, too, and there is even a pepper on one!  Jeff was saying something the other day about getting some more hot pepper plants if we have room in the boxes for them.  Since the beans are not in the bean tower this year but in boxes, they have trellis which they are quickly out growing!  Once all the boxes are in place, Jeff wants to till between them and mulch them with wood chips.  We've only bought one trailer load each of compost and top soil to fill the new boxes and will probably have to get another load each to fill the last big box.  In the fall Jeff will add some compost to each box so they will be ready planting in the spring.
   Not much has been selling in the shop these last few weeks but I have been knitting between filling my wheelbarrow with dirt and mowing the lawn. I did a couple of baseball hats to replace some that sold and a red v-neck cardigan with baseball buttons to compete with the navy and white pin-stripe v-neck sweater I did last week. (Can't legally put logos on them but most fans recognize the pin-stripes/solid red sweaters.) Today I did a couple of apple hats with little brown stems and green leaves after I saw something similar on a website.  I called them "Apple of My Eye" hat.  Maybe they will appeal to some grandmothers.  Hope so. Anyway, they're ready for the shop.
   Tomorrow I have to go to the Eye Clinic in Cooperstown.  I have been having a cloudy discharge from my right eye which has several skin tags on the lids, both eyes are irritated from something airborne...we're outside so much!...and it's time for an eye exam anyway, so when I saw my regular doctor today (we're still trying to get my INR to stay in range) she referred me to the ophthalmologist in Herkimer but the girl at Scheduling said I had to go to C'town first and do my follow-ups in Herkimer and got me an appointment for tomorrow morning. (That's fast!)  Jeff's going to drive coz I don't know if I'd be able to drive home.  It's always something, isn't it?

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Rain, Rain, Go Away

  It has been a cool, damp week.  So bad that today I actually told Jeff I was glad we didn't have camp any more coz it would be even more uncomfortable up there than it was here.  (And this was after the beautiful day we had early this week when an old friend posted a photo on Facebook of the beach there that had made me cry!) Today it poured at times...I know  we need the rain but come on now, it was the Baseball Hall of Fame's 75th birthday and they had a cake cutting ceremony scheduled for 11am outside on the front stairs. Nothing like a little rain with your birthday cake, huh?
  I worked half a day in the shop...for a variety of reasons...and the day went quickly.  It seemed to pour...really rain hard...every hour or so all afternoon and I was glad to get out and head for home.  A quick stop at Stewart's for gas made sure I'd make it without any problems.  Jeff and Fanny were waiting...Jeff walking around, checking the water-soaked boxes and Fanny sticking her head out the door...Jeff said looking for me.   We decided to go to Donna's for supper...quick and easy and the food is always good. When we got home I stared at the TV for awhile but found myself falling asleep so I decided it was time to play on the PC.  It's unusual not have any knitting to do...if it wasn't raining I could be mowing the lawn or maybe we'd have a fire in the outside firepit and be enjoying our new lawn furniture...metal stackable chairs with web seats that were on sale at WalMart ($15/chair).  Maybe I shouldn't complain but Thursday night tv is lousy!  I think I'll just give up and go to least I'll be warmer than I am sitting here.  I refuse to turn on the furnace. It's the principal of the's the middle of June!!!


Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Ah, Sweet Summer....

    The garden continues to be developed with more 4x4' boxes being added each week.  Jeff's decided to put narrow boxes along the sides of the bean tower and along the driveway, and I've asked for a box to replace the flower bed that has gone to weed ...and mosquitoes...besides the fire pit.  Today I bought 2 pots of million bells for the hanging baskets.  I'd like to get a couple more but all the greenhouse had was purple. We need more colors!  I finally got the lawn mowed all the way around the property.  Now I'll just have to start over again.  It is a never ending saga.
   I have to work in the shop this Friday and I'm trying to get 4 sweater sets and a couple of baseball hats finished to take down.  I just can't figure out how to knit and mow lawn at the same time.  Don't think a riding mower would help much either.  Maybe I just can't multi-function?!?

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Always Work on the Farm

      I decided to splurge today for supper and bought some ground beef at Hannaford's... $6 for 1 1/3#'s but it was good and we haven't had hamburgers in this house for quite awhile.  My cousin Ed and Jeff's sister Sherry had come over for supper yesterday, Memorial Day,  and we had an inside picnic with oven fried chicken, potato salad and veggie salad both from Hannaford's (hey, either I'm domestic or I knit.  Can't do both at the same time.) and corn on the cob.  Jeff and I finished the salads and corn with our burgers tonight.   For dessert yesterday I had made a pineapple upside down cake but forgot to put in the brown sugar and it wouldn't come out of the pan so at the last minute I made my cousin Carol Paul's oatmeal squares.  A 9 x 13" pan of them with coconut and white chocolate bites which were a big hit coz by the end of the day there were only 2 squares left in the pan.  Of course, a couple were seen leaving wrapped in paper napkins and stashed in pockets....
   This afternoon I was knitting a lavender rose for the hat to a pink size 9 months sweater set when Judy called to let me know I had sold another sweater set yesterday... making 7 sets this month...and the last 2 baseball hats I had in the shop.  After supper I knitted a baseball hat and got about 3/4 of the embroidery done on it before I started to lose track of what I was doing and put it up.    The time gap between finishing the rose and supper was spent mowing the lawn...or at least part of it.  I did most of the 2 stages...after Jeff started the lawnmower both times. I just couldn't get the damn thing to turn over when I tried pulling it!  I usually take that as a signal not to mow the lawn right now but at this rate it will take me 3 or 4 dry days to get all the way around and a hay mower may be more the thing to use than my Craftsman mower!  Jeff spent the time between starting the lawnmower for me with filling garden boxes.  He tested the pH and got the stuff he used last year to acidify the soil...the bag says it changes hydrangeas from pink to blue but we don't have any hydrangeas.  With all the oak trees around us you wouldn't think we'd need to do that. Then he watered the garden so of course it rained...but not much or for long.  It always seems to rain after he waters it.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Gone Without A Trace

   I noticed last week that something was loose under the car allowing my Subaru to sound like a souped up dragster but we couldn't see where.  Friday I had to work in the shop and by the time I got to Cooperstown part of the exhaust pipe (from the catalytic converter to the muffler) had broken loose and was hanging. Since there was no one around to wire it together I had no choice but drive it back to Herkimer the way it was.  There were a lot of troopers around on the ride home and I was sure I was going to be stopped and ticketed for the noise but they were more interested in stopping speeders.  I made it home without mishap...I thought...and Jeff came out to see what part of the exhaust I was loosing.  Make that lost.  It was gone. Without a trace.  The catalytic converter and muffler were still there but the pipe that connected them was gone.  Today we took the car to Marvis/Cole and for $249.99 I got a new muffler (the old one had a crack the length of it) and the missing exhaust pipe.  The muffler has 'a life of the car' guarantee so is the last one I'll have to pay to have put on that car...but there goes my new lawn furniture...again.  
   Last week after my doctor appointment in Cooperstown I had taken 2 new sweater sets to the shop and by Sunday night I had sold one of them plus 4 others (5 sets in all) so this week I was trying to produce replacements.  I managed to do a twin set with a knitted circular skirt and hat and another set all in size 1 in 4 days developing a terrible stiff neck with a lot of pain along the way. One of the shop's jewelers stopped in Friday while I was working and after seeing my limited mobility and asking some questions showed me some exercises for my neck that made a big difference.  So yesterday and today I've tried to knit for 30 minutes, do my exercises and do something wash dishes or sweep the floor. I still have the neck pain but it's not as bad as it was.   Jeff had given me an aluminized polyester emergency blanket for my birthday (that reflects body heat because I'm cold all the time) and a corner had torn off it so last night I rolled up a small dry towel in the torn off corner and wrapped it around the back of my neck.  That worked better that any heating pad ever!
  Jeff put in another 4x4' box in the front garden and added dirt/compost to two of the bigger boxes in the back.   He's found potatoes, carrots, and other root veggies growing in the compost bin!  He's planning on building a couple more 4x4' boxes for the front garden.