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A Sunday off.

Yesterday we took a picnic lunch & with dog, headed up Coffee Creek road to Mt. Meadow. The dirt road is 14 miles and dead ends up there but it took a good hour to drive. It’s in pretty horrible shape (county had no $, same story all over) and not advised for vehicles with low clearance. Not that that stops them! It’s the trail head into the Alps and hikers and packers love it. There were Prius’s at the trail head! And it was going home day for hikers and for the resort up there so the traffic was heavy and I guess those guys don’t value their cans all that much. On the ONE lane road as they were driving like it was paved! We tooled along slowly, more or less enjoying the bumpy trip and watching out for on-coming as most of them don’t know how to drive roads of this kind. Their idea of passing on a one lane road is to stop when they see you and let you figure out how to get around without climbing the bank or going over one! But we made it and I hope all them did too. Oh yes, there was another factor in the back woods ‘freeway’ traffice- opening day of bow season. These two photos might give you an idea of the road. But no photo can really show it.   

Off the edge. That’s Coffee Creek way down there.

But before the trail walkers started coming back to their cars the campground was totally delightful! The quiet so thick it was almost tangible.  Sis is right, it is not so much just the lack of noise as it is the lack of background noise. The noises we all have grown so used to that we don’t really hear until they are missing. The distant traffic, the lawn mowers & leaf blowers, the electronics and appliances in our houses, we just don’t really hear them anymore. But when they are missing it is very noticeable! The quiet falls softly on your ears. Talk about stress relief! It’s amazing. I just sat and listened. Once in awhile there was a bird chirp, and a breeze came up later adding a soft whisper above. Then around 1pm, as we were were finishing lunch, the hikers stared coming out of the woods. But even with added people noises it was still a lovely day.

We took a walk about the camp ground & down to the meadow. Most flowers were already done and the little  patch of aspens have not yet started to turn. But it’s still pretty. Looking up to the resort & the old historical cabin.

Then while Randy and dog walked down to play in the Salmon River I sat at the table and got out my loom.

Weaving in the Wilderness

I don’t trust my bad knee on that very steep trail but He took pictures. Used to love wading the the stream. Dog enjoyed it!

  Salmon river,

Salmon river, down stream it gets a bit more rugged.

And the view across the meadow into the Alps is just beautiful, anytime of the year. You can see there is still snow up there. The hikers told us there is a lot more than shows here on the sunny side of the hill.

And there are still some flowers blooming in the first meadows.

But now it’s Monday. He’s back to deck building, I’m canning plums, peaches, and zucchini relish. I managed to fit a peach pie in there, too! Dog is snoring in her bed, staying out of the heat & dreaming of that nice cool stream for wading!

Hope you’re finding some cool too!

Home again…

We’re back home again after our two weeks on the road. It was a trip I really needed, I think DH did as well. After Black Seep Gathering we had a week before The Grazing hills event the next weekend so we spent the time wandering though NE Oregon and into Washington via back roads, avoiding the major highways as much as possible. We stayed in State or USFS campgrounds and on occasion just bushwhacking. Here’s our first encounter with an automated flagman!

Automated flagman!

Seafoam blooming at/in window!

It was still springtime up in the higher elevations and a nice wet winter has everything green and blooming. Warm, not hot, days, cool nights, no internet or phones… it was wonderful! By the time we reached Viola, Idaho, we were relaxed and ready for the next event. Katie, Christine, and crew did a great job with this new event. It was well organized, well advertised, well laid out, just an all around excellent fair, especially for a first time event! Lots of other vendors and very friendly people. We got to see new born alpacas taking their first wobbly steps, and chatted with lots of old and new friends. I had a class of 6 new weavers there and at Albany and I hope I was able to inspire them to continue with this fun craft. The grocery bag wind socks were a popular item and certainly put on a show on this windy hill top! Lovely rolling hills farm country!

Viola Booth

One row of vendor booths on Sunday morning. Sunday morning is a slow time at fairs. We had lots of people Saturday and Sunday afternoon.

So now we have a couple months to get ready for OFFF and Lambtown! Check out those events, too, if you have not already done so.  And the garden is into production. I will have to pick beans again today. Randy pulled his crop of carrots and has replanted. I dunno if they’ll do much this time of year but as I have failed at carrots, I’ve turned them over to him! I’ll need to harvent some turnips today, too, as I see there are leaf munchers enjoying those plants!

First harvest! Not bad for a first time! And my first zucchini didn’t make it into the photo!

Randy has gone off with a neighbor to work on the water works up Treasure Creek. The spring run-off took out both the Beavers Dam and his own control system. People down stream are worried about their fishes, most politely, one forgetting that having this water is not her “right” and wording her concerns is less than acceptable ways. Ah well, not everyone is a happy person. Too bad.

And I now have a new ‘toy’! A summer resident and friend has given me his late wife’s knitting machine. She was a beautiful lady and will certainly be missed by everyone who knew her. I hope to be able to learn how to use her classic machine. But I am still weaving, never fear! lol

New projects coming up!

Hope your summer is not too hot or too busy!

 

 

Just chatty…

Beautiful spring day. I went over the hill  to tend to some business and hit the grocery store. On the way back I spotted a column of smoke at the end of Derrick. I thought it was someone burning brush. Could have been, I guess, but a bit ago I got a call from a neighbor saying it was a one acre wild fire and that both volunteer fire companies & the USFS were there in force!  That’s sorta good, but it left no personal or vehicle when an accident call came in, so the highway patrol ended up sending a chopper to that ‘event’. the fire’s over the hill from us and as today is a not too hot, still green, and a still day I expect they’ll get ti down in a short time.

Meantime, I’m getting the garden planted and the early flowers are starting to bloom. My prettiest iris has put up a second stalk!

And my little tomato experiment has succeeded beyond my best hopes! I wasn’t able to find a ‘cherry’ tomato at the nursery so I saved a small yellow and a small red out of the basket I bought at Costco some time ago. I think there are maybe more ‘plum’ than cherry, but they’re small. Some years ago we kept heirloom seed and we were told to ferment them so I kind of applied that to these. I’ve had them come up in the garden from dropped fruit so I  filled the pots with a combo of potting soil and dirt and smashed each tomato into a pot and covered it lightly with soil, watered it, and put the lids on. Several days later I checked and there was every sign that fermentation was going on! 🙂 Sometime later with the lids only partly on to keep the soil moist, I spotted green! There were several in the red pot but only one in the yellow. But that’s okay, I really only need one. But guess what?!  I am unable to kill these little baby plants so I am going to have to find a lot of friends in need to tomato plants! Red on the left, yellow on the right.

As for weaving and knitting, well, not much these days of getting the garden ready. Did I say the alpaca project was a bust? I got about 8″ of ribbing done and decided to try it on. Nope. There is no way a human being could wear that garment. It was not only huge, it was just weird. So it goes into the frog pond. I’ll find another use for the squares but the ribbing was a lot of wasted effort. Except I guess I learned something, not sure what just yet but I’m sure it was something! lol I’m knitting on my Tee, It’s top down and I just got past the vee neck so there are at least several months of knitting left! It gets a row or two during the evening ball game on the radio.

We have a huge population of birds this year and have had some we’re not see before. One that says, “kitty, kitty, kitty”. I’m told it’s a titmouse but they dont’ seem to be in California. At least the one that sings like that isn’t. Anybody know what it might be? Lots of gross beaks and tho they do “sing”, they just never shut up so it’s very noisy around here. I’m hoping that’ll change once the nesting season is over. The Robins have taken over one of the Jays nest sites. There was a bit of a confrontation over it but the robin won. The jays are losing out all around. They have been nesting here for some 30 years at least, but they lost the ‘discussion’ with the gross beak in the rose bush the other day, too. I don’t think they  wanted her nest, I think they just thought she was too close to theirs.

But my Super mulch garden seems to have worked. At least when I moved the mulch back this week, it is working with earthworms. The tomatoes and peppers I planted look quite happy out there. I’ll probably plant beans this next week, too, unless it does get cold as they seem to be forecasting. Not cold enough to have to cover, but just a little chilly. Himself planted his corn (I think it’s a waste of space) but he’s got a Plan. He planted it and covered it with black plastic, says it would heat up the soil. He checks it daily just in case any green shows up. He and dog have gone up to check the water in Treasure Creek and see what the beavers have been up to!

Well, I guess that takes care of chatter for today! I hope you’re having a lovely warm spring. Unlike Denver, where the Giant and the Rockies played baseball in a snow storm yesterday!

 

Memorial Day

I spent most of memorial day the way my Dad would have. Working in the garden. He was a vet but mostly he was a gardener. Randy, with my help, got the fence up around the new bed and I planted the first plants. Two zucchini and one unknown from the compost pile that I think may be a cucumber. There’s also a Borage for the bees.

 

The white around the plants is crushed egg shell. Hoping to keep hungry crawlies at bay. The sharpish edges are supposed to discourage them. If they happen to have wings or are good jumpers, I guess that will be in vain, but I’m trying.  There should be more melons and winter squash along soon and we’re saving a space for some corn and sunflowers.

I also tried out my new Mean Green Machine, a food processor, gifted to me by my MIL. I mentioned that I was wanting one and she said she was never going to use this one. I have been trying to decided between a new bread machine or one of these guys. I only have room for one. Today’s recipe turned out well, but it was a bit big for this machine. I’ll try a smaller recipe next time, but if I can get one that’s worth while I think the bread machine will lose its place as I can use this one for chopping dog’s veggies, too! And there’s even the possibility for finding other uses for it!

Now I think it’s time to go try out the new recipe for oven-fried chicken. Sometimes my excursions into cooking turn out well. I hope this one does and I am already hungry for it! Hope your weekend is as lovely as ours is starting!

PS: The chicken tasted good but it was certainly not Crispy, as the recipes author promised. 😦

Photgraphy lesson: “Architecture” ,

  

  

The Jays know how to keep their young families safe from cruising ravens. They build under, usually under an overhanging roof if they can find one. We’ve been raising Stellar Jays for many years. I like to think it’s great great grandchildren returning every spring. The one on the tree branch is really a squirrel nest but the Jays play around in it, too. We raised two families this spring. I think they’ve abandoned the one in the rose bush that they used for years because we use the deck out there now at that time of the year and they feel that’s a little close, I suppose.  But the other two are on opposite sides of the house. The first one is the newest nest. Randy put up the shelf brackets and strung chicken wire between them as a platform. It was in self defense as they wanted to build in his supply of fence panels and we were going to be needing them!

But the subject is architecture. They build rather free form but it is a tight and sturdy nursery. And safe, as I have mentioned. We have other birds around but these are the only ‘house’ birds. I had a house wren build a nest in the pocket of a pair of my pants which were hanging on the clothes line. By the time they were done with it the pants were pretty faded but I could not bring myself to oust them.

Water..

Anther blog photo lesson. Water is an important subject now days. Seems like there is either not enough of it or there is too much of it. This year we appear to be edging onto not enough here. And it’s spring with summer not looking wet at this point. But immediately water to me means Treasure Creek, the stream running though my garden. Not very big but a pretty stream, it’s my “white noise”, masking traffic on the road and loud talking neighbors. Dog can get a drink, I can dip my watering can in there to refresh any dry looking plants and local wildlife take advantage of it too. We see frogs and some little trouts.

 

And last summer we had a family of raccoons wading up steam. Not unusual to see one or two but these were 4 babies and I got some fuzzy pictures. I spooked them and they hid behind an alder and peeked around at me. Of course, the camera focused on the maples leaves in front of me where I wasn’t paying attention. Still a cute, if fuzzy shot, I think. And one with Water! 🙂

 

Dear Diary… the longest post you’ll ever see here!

Every day when Himself comes home the first thing he asks is, “What did you do today?” I don’t think he really wants to know, it’s just a conversational gambit thingy but I usually am unable to answer. I know I’ve been busy all day but most of it was apparently not notable. So I thought I would let you suffer through a day with me and lets see what it is I do all day!

April 23, 2018

  • 5:32 am: Woke, glanced at the clock, sighed and got up.
  • Bathroon first, as usual
  • Started the coffee, Himself gets it ready before he goes to bed so I just have to push the button.
  • Checked the temperature. It was 63 in here, not really cold but chilly enough to warrant a fire in my opinion so I built one.
  • Poured coffee and turned on the tablet, checked my usual morning sites and email, by that time Himself was up.
  • So I got dressed and started breakfast. Eggs and sausage this morning, toast & applesauce.
  • Then, lets see… Printed out paperwork for loom orders, boxed up same, let the cat out, printed postage and hauled them out the the truck so he could drop them off in the mail box (it’s a big one!) on his way to town.
  • Answered some more email, put my shoes on and managed to get out of the house in time to meet Tsuneko for our morning walk. Lovely warm morning, I left the window open we I left, the fire having been long out. Visited with a couple neighbors and our old mailman on the way. Jack has been delivering mail up here for many many years and loves to talk. It was his idea for us to put up the big box so i don’t have to drive to Trinity Center to the post office to mail the packages. He’s got his grandson taking over the route, (nice boy) but he still does Monday and whenever Peter needs a day off. I wore just a light sweater this morning and it was getting to be too warm by the time I got home. Cat weather~ see below!
  • 12:00 Opened up the house, turned on the drier to freshen up the load I didn’t get folded yesterday, made my lunch salad and am now typing this. Next I’ll eat my lunch while defeating Evil with my Viking hero- that’s my noontime treat. Rest of the day coming later….
  • You know it’s a warm day when the cat naps on the deck. she’s loving the sunshine!
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  • After lunch cleaned up in the kitchen, loaded the dishwasher and washed the bread machine pan, ready for the next batch.
  • Got sausage out of the freezer to thaw for tonight’s meatloaf. Brought in and folded rest of laundry while I was there also put away the soup I canned yesterday and straightened stuff out for the new shelves he built this morning.
  • Planted kale seed and some marigolds. Also some garlic bulbs that sprouted in the kitchen. Dunno if they’ll make new roots or not, but decided to chance it as they looked  fat and healthy. The peas are showing leaves now, too. And I have some tulips blooming just across the path.
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  • Gathered pine cones for a basket, found a checkered cloth, and “decorated” the corner table in the rental cabin. Mom-in-law says I am not to clean it before she comes in mid May as she’ll need a project while she’s here. All it needs is dusting and airing out, tho I intend to paint the back bathroom, it’s a gloomy place as is.
  • So now I’m ignoring the fact that the dining table is full of clutter again. I guess that’s next, tho, as it has reached the point where we have to push stuff aside in order to eat dinner each evening. Shameful, I know, but it’s such a handy spot to dump whatever you have in your hands at the time. I took off my pretty cut work white cloth, I had spilled gravy on it and he has what looks like coffee stains at his place! Yikes, I knew better than to put that on in the colder season. In summer we eat on the deck so the cloth would stay pretty. Table may still look cluttered to some of you, but the stuff in the top right corner is His. It’s a box that he sometimes hits with his mail and paper work. The turn-table in center top has stuff like salt & pepper, napkin holder, the electronic candle from my MIL and the SFGiants gnome from the same lady! On my place mat, there on the left, are a couple packets of arugala seed, last years, but I’ll offer it to Tsuneko, if she wants it. I found that I detest the stuff! Yuck, in fact. Right along with cilantro, and that stuff they make with basil- pesto! I don’t object to basil in reasonable quantities but pesto made of it… no thanks. I made some once when I first heard of it and had lots of garden basil. My buddy loved it so she got it all! lol
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  • Tossed the kitchen rugs into the washer. I’ll mop tomorrow.
  • 3:30 pm Himself has come in now and he & the dog are sharing a bag of salami. So I guess it’s time for me to head into the kitchen and assemble the meat loaf. I baked hamburger type buns and am planning meatloaf sandwiches and slaw for dinner. I might bake a batch of brownies for the game later.
  • Meatloaf in the oven. Decided against the brownies, too much oven. Had a graham cracker crust in the pantry (love $General!) and a packet of vanilla pudding plus a can of cherry pie filling. Not fresh strawberries but it’ll do until they come along in another month or so! And it’s pretty!
  • 4:30 Dog has quit following me around, she was smelling hamburger and thought I was making her dinner. She’s ever hopeful! Disappointment! I don’t have to make hers for a couple more weeks, just made a new batch. Her dinner is thawing on the counter so she’ll get it at the proper time.  The vet put her on grain free because of a chronic ear infection, says grain feeds the yeast. So I make her meat and veggies & freeze them in baggies, she loves it but I can’t see that it has helped her ear problem much.
  • But now I’m going to sit and read a new knitting pattern to see if I really want to do it. My loom and yarn is ready for when the game comes on this evening. The Giants are playing the Nationals, coming off a win and a fun game with the Angels!
  • 5.35 pm: Meatloaf is done, slaw’s made, as is dressing. Do we need beans? Nay. Himself is reading the news, I’ve been doing x-words here, Jays are fussing at something. Who knows? Jays are always bitching about something. They are just a mouthy group. I guess that’s why I like them- We have much in common!  The temperature is starting to fall, too, so I think I’ll close up now. Seems a shame but I don’t want it to get too chilly in here for old people!
  • Where’s dinner, Ma?!
  • Dinner’s over, time for the kitty to go home. She lives in the studio since there’s no room here for that necessary box that house cats need. Dishwasher is loaded and going. Game not on for another 10 minutes so here’s the end of my day. Game and weaving a square. Last email to my sis or both, take my melanin pill (it’s supposed to cure my tinnitus), brush teeth – all the usual bedtime stuff and off to dreamland.
  • Well, if he had asked what I did today, I could have told him.
  • He didn’t, of course.