Sunday, July 22, 2018

Wet Day, Finally the Rain we Need, More Plans

On Sunday, July 22nd we woke up late again and there was no rush to get going today. The rains had dampened our area overnight and the forecast today was for 78% precipitation. This is not a great way to spend a Sunday and I’m sorry for you working folk who only get the weekends to play (or ‘frolick) as my sister says. However, we badly need the rain. The gardens, the grass, the pond and the critters. It was 60f/16C when we got up at 8. These late nights! Holy cow!

Last night while reading in bed, we heard noises on the roof
This morning, Bill went up to check it out but could see no evidence of mischief
Maybe the birds were drinking puddles of water?
We immediately made our hot brews and then jumped right back into our discussion about this ‘secret to you’ project. I guess I can tell you know, since it is in the works. Bill has been talking about having another shed built for him to have a work ‘room’ to build his model airplanes. The cargo trailer is too small and he’d prefer to use that for travelling and storing the 5 or 6 planes he has. The storage shed now has his new bench, but it is for daily projects around here, not for planes.

and  when the bird feeder sits almost empty, this little guy is hungry
After doing some due diligence, checking prices and styles in town at the FS Co-op, we talked to our friendly construction guy, Mike. We like to give him the business if all factors can be met. Price, timing etc. He gave us a suitable quote and Bill gave him the go ahead. We can save on labour costs if Bill and Mike build it themselves and it shouldn’t take more than a couple of 4-hour days building. As much as I supported Bill’s need and desire to have this shed, I was never happy with the location.

I'm sure he's thinking I should fill it again
This morning, I put that discussion into motion and between the two of us, we’ve come to the best conclusion. Looks are important to me and the original place it would be placed would not look appealing and it would bug me forevermore. Dramatic, I know, but I just plain wasn’t happy about it. We’ve got two more opinions when Donna and Gerry dropped over and now it is settled. Yay! I love the new location and it means we can use our car shelter for what we bought it for. To cover our vehicles.

this is the area we've chosen and the rough outline
is approximately where the shed will sit got sine wood to clean up
After they left, we came inside, hung our wet hoodies and I made up Bill’s choice for breakfast. Today he felt like toasted bacon sandwiches and that sounded good. He added a slice of tomato and I just added some ketchup. I ate the heels of the bread loaf, preferring that for some reason. It was good and that is my allotment of bread for the next 2 weeks. Hmm, now what to plan for a nice indoor supper? I guess it is Bill’s day because he suggested meat loaf and I’m making a cherry pie.

It is awesome what Bill will do for a cherry pie
Love the apron (and the smirk)
Funny what some guys will do for a cherry pie. We pitted the 2 lb. container of unsweetened fresh cherries together. It wasn’t that difficult after all and only took about 30 minutes. Now I have approximately 7 cups of quartered cherries so dug out my cookbook. I informed Bill that I still need my recipe, even for pastry, which I’ve made tons of times, but I’m not Mom who always made hers out of her head, perfectly every time. Okay, except for those times when we tried to hide it under the edge of our plates. 😊

I've actually never made cherry pie from freshly pitted cherries
I found a Cherry Pie recipe and made up enough pastry for 2 – double pie crusts. It took 5 cups of cherries for one pie so I had a couple of cups leftover for a cherry cheesecake. The pastry turned out perfectly, I just never know, even though I had to roll the second one out twice to make it big enough. First pie done and in the convection oven. Now, waiting for the rhubarb and the strawberries to thaw enough that I can slice the berries. Yes, he gets one of those pies too.

My pastry dough is never round but it is always flaky
I’m using Splenda though where it calls for sugar so except for the flour (and the fruit) an almost paleo dessert. I don’t have enough Gluten-free or coconut flour this time. It is the perfect day to bake though and we are so happy to have the rain. Bill and Clemson took care of the snoozing part of the day and I soon joined while waiting for the pie to bake and read more of London Bridges. I’m almost half way through it in a couple of days, so another good one.

Bill wondered if the R was for Richards
and I'm sure Rob will think it is for him
but really it was so I knew which was the Rhubarb pie
At 5:30 I got up and took a walk down the lane. Sure didn’t get many steps on my Fitbit today! The sky wasn’t clear although there were patches of blue showing here and over there while in another portion of the sky, clouds looked angry. I’m surprised I didn’t see a rainbow and maybe someone did in their neck of the woods. When I came back in, I commented on how warm it was out there. The temperature had risen over the last couple of hours to 68F and we opened a couple of windows.

Angry clouds?
We’ve prayed for rain and now it is looking like it could be a possibility over the next 3 days at least. Never enough all at once though, 1mm now, 5 – 10mm then and another 10 at that time. We’ll wait and see what actually comes. We have a different kind of weekend coming up with friends arriving with their rv’s before and on Saturday. Should be a good time. Tomorrow we need to clear some wood to make room for the new shed assembly.

Blue is making occasional appearances
The meatloaf wasn’t fully cooked until around 6:30 but we don’t mind waiting for a delicious meal. We had a lot of dishes because I decided not to wash them as I was baking today. Mainly, since I was moving from one thing right on to the next. We quickly made the decision to put the dishes in the dishwasher tonight since we were plugged into electric anyway.

It was a pretty calm day
The sun is certainly trying its best to grab the last portion of the day. That just makes for beautiful photos tonight. Bill has felt a little off today, sleeping a lot and with a headache for most of the day. I hope the meal helps settle things down. We each had a veggie with the meatloaf and now have a few choices for dessert. Cherry pie, strawberry rhubarb pie or the last of the white pudding. Hmm, they all sound good.

I finished writing this post and downloaded the pictures I’d taken today. Not much exciting happening since I wasn’t outside much. It has been a successful baking day though and we also made a decision on our new Ridge addition. Oh, and Bill got spoiled. I guess that’s okay, once in a while. 😊 Hope you had a fun Sunday.

Meat loaf and spinach
By the way, cherry pie won out and it was crazy good!

Our rain barrel is almost full again!
The pie turned out great
Good night from the Ridge

Thanks for stopping by. Your comments are always appreciated.

Great Night’s Sleep, Blessed Rain! More Reading, More Firelight

On Saturday, July 21st Bill was up early with Clemson, before 6, and crawled back into bed. Our 4-legged little boy decided he’d rather sleep in his bed on the couch rather than squeeze in between us. We slept until 7 when I needed to get up. I know I slept well though with a window open upstairs and most downstairs bringing in the fresh air. The rain started around 10:30 and was a pretty steady light rain even after I slipped under the sheet at 11. Good!

Yay! Rain
The winds were still quite apparent this morning while Bill and I had our first coffee and tea. Bill opened the blinds and we sat at our laptops reading blog posts by our friends. Oh-oh, Peter Rabbit is back and dares to stare me down when I said “you stay out of my garden!” I’ll have to see if he’s nibbling my carrot tops. So far they appear untouched and I’d like to keep it that way!

Turn around, Peter!

Yes, I'm talking to you! Stay out of my garden!

Playing with my phone settings
Maybe this bunny rabbit will scare him off for good!
These rain pails sit under our Suite run off
Hard to tell but it is full (see the floating bee?)

Garden earth is damp
 I’m going to be moving some stakes around for the tomato plants, the ones I found yesterday (in a pinch) are not working, too stout. Now, with the ground soft, it should be easy to do that. With my tea done, I took care of that, no sign of Peter. It made me smile to see the dark dampened earth around the plants. A silent ‘Thank you!’ was raised to the rain God. The stakes got rearranged a bit and I brought a couple down for my potted drunken stalks. Gently does it, the little babies are fragile.

More evidence of rain and a pretty picture of the drops
Bill went out and opened the carton from FedEx, anxious to fix Weber Q. The scraping noise I hear is him cleaning it as well. A job I’ve done maybe only once but absolutely dislike. So, when he finished that he got the riding mower out and went down the lane to cut the front field. The grass isn’t brown out there and even though the grass isn’t too long, the weeds are. You can sense that he is much busier than I am today!

My branches didn't work out

But now they are all staked up 
When I heard him coming up the lane I ran out and hand signaled to him that I was starting breakfast. I could tell he was ready by his response. After all, it was 11 o’clock. We ate our bacon and eggs and then I offered to clean up dishes while he drove into Durham to fill the gas container for the mower. The clouds are in control of the sky today but once in a while we see some sun. It doesn’t much matter whether it is in or out, it is a warm day at 75F in the noon hour period.

Sitting with Donna at the Acreage pond
After a snooze, off Bill went to cut the back field. I timed him. It takes 45 minutes without doing the hilltop or the berm. I lazed, which I’m an expert at. There really wasn’t much I could get into today with the winds so gusty so I read my book and then had my own little siesta. Around 3ish we all drove over to the Acreage to fill the water bladder. Our tank was registering around 17 gallons. Clemson and I visited with Donna up front at the pond while Bill went back to get water from their well.

Clemson the wanderer
Back home, while the water transfer was taking place, Bill and I had some cherries and cheese that he bought at Costco. Wow, that’s a lot of cherries! If it wasn’t for pitting them all, I might be tempted to make him a cherry pie. His favourite. I don’t have a cherry pitter nor do I think I even have a hairpin, which used to work in a pinch. Oh well. I caught up on my post and then went back outside. It was 78F outside and 80F inside the Suite. A nice day, actually but the wind could let up a bit.

Sky picture through our screen door
Bill and I got into a good discussion about a new project we’re talking about. I won’t let the cat out of the bag until we make a decision. By the time we’d talked about it from all angles of perception, he went and had a shower and I began getting things out for supper.We just grilled Leadbetter’s Cowboy Burgers tonight with bacon and cheese. Yum. We’re each having a bun and my mouth is watering already.

And it was enough with nothing else on the side
The sun is making more appearances as the clouds are breaking up all around us. Should be a lovely evening. After eating and doing the dishes up, we relaxed for a bit and then once again drove over to the Acreage. 

If it wasn’t so windy up here on the Ridge, we would host the fire but for now, we know we are welcome over there. We wanted to talk to Mike, who is staying at his trailer there on weekends. He has a hand in our planned project.

A new wildflower down the lane
I didn't pick it though
We had a nice visit again and a great fire. Donna is sold on my little firestarters, she used to have a hard time starting theirs but now loves how easy it is. She will be making her own soon. 😊 

It was a great fire, visit and evening
We left around 10:30 but not because it was cold, rather that it was late for us old fogies to be out at night. Ha ha. This has been a good day and I hope yours was too.

Our Ridge pond, in the morning light
Thank you for reading. If you wish to leave a comment, I’d love to hear from you.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Gorgeous Morning and Beyond, Do What I Want Day, Bill Returns to Home Base

I woke up through the night once but easily dropped back off. I had my window open for awhile but it was just too windy on my head/face. Other windows were left open downstairs as the night was not going to drop as much as the previous night. I turned the tv on when I went up to bed at 10 and watched a silly but also a quite comical movie, until 11:30. I finished my book around 9 and had issues trying to post my blog for the next hour.

Look at the halo!
With a software update for my Samsung phone downloaded, I wondered if maybe it just needed to install before the issue was cleared. This morning, Friday, July 20th, things still weren’t happening. I realized that the only thing I’d changed yesterday was my blog picture BUT I also changed the font colour ON the picture to white. Hmm, everything changed to white so only my pictures were visible. Good grief! No wonder the words weren’t showing up. Easy fix!

Gate is open so they are working on "our" turbine again
Clemson and I were up and outside at 5:45 and then back into bed. It took a while for my brain to stop and I dropped off until 7:30. I actually had an early morning dream about my youngest niece, Morgan, and my sister, Wendy. Not sure where that came from but it was nice all the same. I made my tea and Bill called after I texted him that my sorry butt was finally up. Ha ha. His morning had started an hour earlier, I’m sure.

love this country road for walking
I looked for the ISS last night out my window, since I had the perfect view of the moon and since I was still awake at 11:10 but I didn’t see it. I don’t know what the guy was talking about in our paper, I’ll have to read it again. If it passed, we should have been able to see it in the sky from here. Oh well. After posting my blog this morning, I noticed the wind was picking up so I brought the awnings in and went down the road for a nice walk. Perfect day for it.

A field of Canola coming up nicely despite the dryness
The temperature was in the high 60’s before 8 o’clock so I paced myself, wore my waist pouch with a bottle of water and took my camera, phone and walking stick. It was lovely! When I returned, I just sat outside on the patio mat in the breeze. I’m not grumbling at the wind up here today, it is flipping our hammock bed around and around but it is quite necessary. At 11 I moved inside and made myself an omelette for brunch. I was feeling hungry this morning, must have been the walk!

Looks like a lot of food, but I ate the whole thing!
With a second tea on the go, I cleaned up the dishes. I was reading about Early Onset Dementia in a book that Suzie had given me last winter. We already have learned so much about Mom’s disease but it confirmed a few things and even though I don’t think this is generic in her case (no one else in her family had it) I paid close attention to the caregiver’s reactions and was interested in case examples quoted in the book. Then it goes onto other diseases and symptoms Mom is not experiencing (yet). Even though it is knowledge, it is also depressing.

Can't remember who posted Chicory the other day, but we have it too
I decided to close it up and move on to a new James Patterson book that I picked up at the book box. With windows open, indoor fans running and blinds closed, it is still heating up inside. I believe we will be outside a lot today. Before going out, I swept the floors in the Suite and shook the mats. I also have some brush to pick up at the end of the laneway but in these winds, I won’t be worrying about it today. I’d be chasing it around as it blew off my wagon.

A new roof going on at the corner but no further than they were the other day
With company expected next weekend, I went out to the bunky with our 3-step ladder. First moving things onto the shelf to free up floor space, I swept the dead flies and accumulated dirt out the door. Up in the rafters, I found a clean fitted and flat sheet for a queen bed in one of our vacuum bags. I folded out the futon and shook it out, the best I could. I began a hunt for our air mattress. It took a while to find where we’d tucked it last fall but soon had it inside a duvet cover and filled with air from the electric pump.

I don't have our neighbour's phone # so
I placed a note in Chery's mailbox about our upcoming
clothing exchange
With the bed made, I felt better and more prepared for our guests. Bill texted that he was on his way from Stratford where he’d stopped to help Marilynne out with a few odd jobs. He arrived home just before 4 and we unloaded Black Beauty of his bag, cooler and Costco groceries. Amazed again that I manage to find room in the fridge for everything. We do stock up when we shop that bulk food store. After Bill emptied his overnight bag I poured him a Coke and myself a Palm Bay. He had hoped to pick up a case of Coke Zero at Costco but they didn’t have it. Darn.

Very windy day
We sat outside in the shade of our only tree and read for awhile. Bill is reading Escape by David Baldacci and is hooked right away. At 5 he went inside and fed Clemson and had to sit in his recliner for a quick nap. It had been a long day for him, go-go-go. With the strong wind, chairs had to be folded if we weren’t sitting in them and I walked up to check out the tomatoes. A couple of them needed more stakes to hold their stalks so I used a couple of branches from the wood pile. The tomatoes were causing them to bend in the wind.

Comfy cozy
We decided on a simple supper of toasted tomato sandwiches. They could be made inside as barbecuing in the wind would prove very difficult. That’s okay, we have tomatoes from the garden to try! I’m not keen on the whole wheat bread but it is the bread Bill wants and I don’t eat enough of it to complain. The sandwiches were good, I can taste the difference in our home-grown tomatoes. Yummy.

Woops! I ate half of it before I remembered the picture
With the dishes done up, we vegged in front of the tv for a while together. I’m sure the eyes drooped shut briefly, his and mine. The temperature is dropping outside and by 8 it was a refreshing 77F/25C. The sky to the southwest looks dark blue and the weather guessers did say it was going to rain at 7. Hmm, they missed that target.

Campout next door
Our neighbours’ to the northeast are having their annual gathering this weekend. A trailer, a Class C motorhome and a couple of tents. We remember it from last year, a week before ours. We think they got rained on and they may again tonight. It is nice to see others enjoying the great outdoors as well. ‘Tis the season! 

Looking out the screen at the pretty sky

And what seemed like a storm seemed to be blowing in

To the southeast
 Donna and Gerry arrived at the Acreage late this afternoon so we decided to pop over and share a bit of their fire tonight. Mike was there as well and it was a great evening to sit out. Clemson was in full wanderer mode tonight, and when it got too dark to see him, around 10:30 we came home. About 20 spatters of rain followed us from the Rav to the Suite. Unless we get a steady rain overnight, I'll be watering my garden tomorrow.

This has been a nice day, not much done but I did get the Bunky readied and my guy came home. I hope you’ve had a good day too.
And to the north, blue sky is still apparent

Thank you for stopping in. I love hearing from you if you care to leave a comment.

Cool Start, Nature’s Critters Come to Life, Little Bit of Painting, Mom

A couple of times through the night I woke up and felt chilly. I think there were only a couple of windows left open and no wind but I slipped my jammies on so I could drop back to sleep. Clemson stirred at 5:45 on Thursday, July 19th and we went outside for his piddle. Back into bed, he crawled under the sheet and light bedspread with me. Cuddled together, we managed to snooze until I got up a few minutes before 7.

It needs attention, no?
The morning ritual takes on a whole new perspective when you are alone. I made my tea after opening blinds and closing the downstairs window. To get my blood pumping and to warm up at the same time, I did my 3-minute warm-up routine. I texted Bill and we chatted when he called right back. It isn't the same as when he is sitting across the table from me. No one to play footsies with. 😉

He says he slept well and it is nice to know now exactly ‘where’ he spends his evenings and sleeps. It gives me comfort, which is comical, in a way because he isn't my child.

First coat on the firepit
nothing on the base, yet
The sky is a clear blue again and although I missed the sunrise for probably the 17th time this month, I knew it would be another beautiful day. Last night at 9:30, Bill checked the status of our FedEx parcel and found that it was in Woodbridge, On and should arrive today by end of day. Hmpf, heard that before but I am feeling optimistic and hope it is before 10 at least. Since there was no breeze to speak of again, I decided to tackle another project we’d talked about.

Mr. Piggy is back
I got some direction from Bill on which sandpaper to use and began removing the loose rust particles from our fire pit.  It is in need of a new paint job, badly. With gloves on, I worked my way around the pit until it was relatively smooth and then wiped it clean with a rag. We’d bought Tremclad High Heat Enamel spray paint in gloss black. I did the perequisite 1-minute shake to stir the paint and began a section at a time making sure to keep out of the direction of any spray. You need a strong 'trigger' finger for this job and mine isn't one of the strongest. It kept slipping off the nozzle. LOL

He can't be praying for food!!
Oh, maybe he is thanking me for it
90% was covered when I ran out of paint, leaving only the base and the 2nd coat to do but it doesn’t look too bad. I’m not a pro so no matter how even I tried to keep it, the flow wasn’t always consistent. Maybe with the 2nd coat it will improve. It was around 10:15 when I heard and then saw FedEx coming up the lane. That’s great, however, I was half way through my job and with a cleanup to follow, I knew I wouldn’t get in to see Mom this morning. Half hour earlier would have been perfect.

this little Brown Bird posed for me
I finished up, snapped a picture of the empty can and texted Bill before hopping in the shower. All cleaned up I had brunch and took a walk up to my garden. Still no more peppers but the plants look healthy. I’m disappointed but reading the plant sticks that came with them, there is still hope. It says 60-70 days to harvest. I still have a week left. Ha ha, so optimistic! One beefsteak tomato is almost ripe and we’ll be eating it this weekend, I’ll bet.

Red-winged blackbird

And guess who?

With my book, which is getting hard to put down, I sat out in the half sun, half shade on my lounge chair. Clemson joined me for a little while but after wandering around and sitting with me for a few minutes, he wants inside again. It is nice and cool inside the Suite so I don’t blame the furry little guy. 

Yes, I caught you again! Look at those fat cheeks
I took a walk down the lane not for any reason other than exercise. My plan is to go see Mom at 4 this afternoon and then take her down to supper. I think I’ve said that us leaving is the hardest part for her. She needs a distraction even though she doesn't think she has ever been down there before!

Back inside for some water and to catch up on my post. Oh! This morning while I was sitting at the table with my tea, I saw something here in the pond for the first time. I do believe they are gophers or ground hogs. 
I zoomed in but couldn’t get a clear picture. Looks like a Mama and child. 

I don't know what they are
Not raccoons even though it looks like stripes on Mama's tail, that is a branch
The chipmunks, birds and ducks are making their presence known today. Some days I see them more than others but they are always a treat to listen to and watch. No turtles and no geese crossed my path on this day. But wait! My walk after supper proved that statement wrong!

I sat outside until 3 and retreated inside to brush my teeth and get dressed up a bit to go and visit Mom. I’ve never visited her at this time of day, it just doesn’t usually work that way for me. When I arrived, I was hopeful but soon found out that this was going to be a tough hour. Turns out it was the hardest one I’ve spent since returning home in the spring. After talking to Donna, we think it is just a result from a mid-day visit. Point taken, I won’t do it again if it can be helped.

Looks like Mama Duck is alone

But nope! All these little heads pop up as I walk away
When I left her at the supper table at 5 to 5, she was fine and her usual self with the waves until I was out the door. I am going to give myself credit on how I kept the conversation going, being brutally honest about her disease rather than let her think she was stupid or crazy. I remained loving and positive and although I couldn’t get her out of the funk until 15 minutes before I left, I made the very best of the visit. It hurt my heart though and did get a nice picture of us together.

A nice shady spot to read
As I drove home, I, myself, dropped into the ‘funk’ because I can’t imagine how it must be for her. No one needs to tell us that it will get worse as time goes on as we already know how important those ‘good’ visits are. For us, I hope they are few and far between for a while yet rather than more frequent. Clemson was waiting for me when I got home and after picking him up and thanking him for ‘looking after the house’ I got his supper ready. I’m hungry too so at 5:30, I began my own.

Posing with Mom in her new hairdo
She even has her "Past President" Legion pin on her sweater
that right there indicates what she has lost with this nasty disease
I heard from Bill as I was leaving Rockwood. We had both hoped that he would be on his way home tonight but his Friday morning appointment is back on schedule so it will be late afternoon before I see him. Part of me is glad, I hate to think of him driving home after a full day, Costco shopping plus a stop in Stratford. Now at least I know he is settled for the night, safe and sound whether he goes to Costco tonight or not. 

I went up to check my tomato and was shocked to see
our first bunny rabbit run out of the garden
OH NO!! that changes things for me
My supper is much like last night, since I enjoyed it so much. In place of the sausage and steak, I cut up the cooked chicken strips in the fridge with the fennel, zucchini and onion. Fried in bacon grease again, it was another tasty, filling meal. I put the dishes in the sink, hardly enough to use water for, and just rinsed them. Clemson seems to have something on his mind and can’t settle down so maybe I’ll just sit with him for a while with my book and finish my post. I think he is just feeling the heat. 

So, Clemson hasn't noticed the geese
The rest of the evening was quiet. Clemson and I squeezed in a walk down the lane and I closed up our storage shed and the bunky before I called it a night. Tonight, if I’m up at 11:10 pm there are supposed to be 6 passes by the ISS (International Space Station) in front of the moon. There is a path shown in our local paper that if you are in that area, you will see a teeny-weeny eclipse when it happens. How cool! I’m not close enough but I haven’t seen the space station for quite a while.

My Pointer pooch just noticed them

And this was his stance just before he ran after them
Luckily, he didn't shift into full gear and they were gone before he got to the gate
I doubt the tv will go on tonight, I’m planning on either finishing or getting really close to finishing this book. It is only 7 pm so I have lots of time to read. I’ve had a good day and got a head start on a new project. 

Don't like seeing these choppers go overhead
I have purchased another can of paint so can finish the firepit tomorrow. I hope Bill gives it the thumbs up when he returns. Oh, and I hope your day has been a fine one as well.
tonight's supper with my book and an ice cold glass of water
Good night from the Ridge
Thanks for taking the time to see what I’m up to. I love to hear from you if you wish to leave a comment.