Monday, September 30, 2019

Someone Special is Missing, Windy Walk, Apples for Sauce, Checking Things Off

The Ridge

I first woke when I heard my phone make a noise at 5:45. Because I like having it near me when I’m by myself, it was up on my ledge above the window. I might have already been half awake and heard it because I didn’t have my ear plugs in last night. No matter, I hopped out of bed, used the facilities and turned the B.F. heater on before I scurried up to bed again and waited until almost 6:30 before texting Bill. Today, Monday, Sept. 30th is his turn to celebrate a birthday.

One of my favourite pictures of my guy
We chatted for a bit after he was up and had eaten breakfast. It is nice that Bob and Jo-Anne have offered him a room downstairs where he has his own bathroom to use. Sometimes small things like that make a big difference when you are staying at someone else’s place. He is grateful for their offer of accommodation as it meant he didn’t have to take the Suite – meaning I would be the one driving back and forth to do my job every other day. We are both thankful. 😊

And here he is happy at school
It was a little after 7 when I realized that I had to get up to get the garbage and bins out so, I did that. When I stepped outside, it was windy and only 52F but it didn’t feel too bad. Instead of driving the 2 bins of recycle and garbage down, I walked them down. Needless to say, I was warmed up quite sufficiently by the time I returned to the Suite. I was convinced though that it would be a great day for a walk so donned my vest and headed out. Instead of going my normal route, I crossed the paved Baptist Church Road and walked the gravel of North Line to the South.

It was a nice walk in a change of direction
Because of the garbage walk already recorded on my Fitbit, I didn’t have to go as far down the hilly road to get a mile in before I turned back. The sky was cloud filled and it didn’t look like much was going to happen anytime soon in the way of sunshine. No worries, there were enough little things to do inside and out, sun or no sun. As long as it doesn’t rain, I’m good. I think, by the look of the sky, since I’ll be plugged in all day anyway, I will bake something today.

Donna arrived around 10:30 and we relaxed inside for a chat for a while before she had to go see Mom. I had a mess, all around. I had apples thawing in the sink, and an overhead cupboard’s contents spread out over everything else. I spared you a picture of that. She brought me some items that I might like for Cancun so I was happy to try them on and decide. Before she left, we went up on the berm to gather some apples from the pile. She took a bag full but it left about 3 more bags of apples that would go to waste. Can’t be helped! They would only be good for apple sauce since they have some bruising and marks on them.

A sky show early in the day
When Bill cut the front field, he placed a long pole across the
It wasn’t 10 minutes after she left that my cousins, Bonnie and Gary, came up the drive. I knew they were coming for a quick visit while on their way to see his cousin's new place. We caught up a bit and within half hour we hugged and they headed out. It had warmed up quite nicely since earlier when the wind was making the 13C/54F feel much worse. I turned the heater off after they left and put stuff away inside. I made some headway and found a good spot for Clemson’s last personal items.

Bill put reflector tape on the mailbox post
It will be staying in place (minus the box) for the winter
With that done, I started making an apple custard crumble. I guess the cook couldn’t decide what to call it so included both names in the title of the recipe. With it in the oven baking for 50 minutes, I went upstairs and tried on the few tops Donna brought. I kept 3 and put 3 aside for my sisters on Thanksgiving. I was encouraged to go through my closet once more as well as go through the Cancun stuff quickly. There are still decisions to be made. I know, I know! Me and my clothes! Bill says what else do I need but swimsuits and sundresses? 

From the front field, it was too early for the turtles to be out
See the small light patch near the back top of the picture?
Later, I took the following shots from that exact spot
When the sun came out later, the turtles came out too

This little guy was so proud to be up so high
He soon jumped into the water
 I have about 20 empty hangers now and whether anyone (ahem, Bill) notices or not, they all contained items that are no longer in the closet. I took them out to the Bunky for the next exchange. 

and before I ate it all, I took a picture of my brunch
A hard boiled egg, and all the other good stuff
The sun was out and since the crumble was done cooking, I unplugged and went to turn the inverter on. Oh-oh. It never fails. When I’m alone, things go wrong. Always! It wouldn’t turn on. I told Bill this morning that I wouldn’t bother him by texting during the day. Not knowing the situation at his painting job, I didn’t want to be a pest.

And you can see the front field from here
the turtles abandoned the log
So, I texted Rob to see if they were home yet. He doesn’t have panels and isn’t familiar with our inverter so I will wait to talk to Bill after his day is done. I wasn’t too terribly concerned since I was able to plug us back in to power. It would’ve been a perfect afternoon to reap some benefit from the solar panels is all. If Bill suggests that I do things I’m not comfortable with, (eg. resetting an inverter using a volt meter) then I know Rob is available to lend a hand. It is so nice to have him closeby!

There was quite a wind this morning
It was close to 5 when I started chopping up the green tomatoes that I picked this afternoon. I wanted to grab some before they turned red so chose a lot of the smaller ones. I picked the teeny green onions that I'd planted from seed in early June as I would need more onions that what I had in the fridge. I also found a nice-sized green pepper that I would use as well. A few minutes past 5, the birthday boy texted me to tell me that they had finished work AND supper. And then he sent me a wonderful picture. Thank you, Jo-Anne, for providing the birthday pie when I can’t.

He gave me a call when I asked if he could and we talked about the inverter. He’s thinking perhaps it is a fuse/bulb? Whatever he said. We had to replace one soon after purchasing the Suite. He wondered about the transfer switch, which Rob also mentioned, but it would be odd since we haven’t moved any where since last using it. It is not anything that needs to be addressed before the weekend so I’ll just remain plugged into electric until then.

And I decided to place Clemson's bed, blanket, sweater and monkey
up there on the top shelf with all of our other sentimental stuff
We'll be ready to move around Hallowe'en so may as well get this ornament
from our house out now
The cows watched me get the mail before they went about their business
Our election notices came
After I had the veggies all cut and salt added, I let them sit for the rest of the evening. Tomorrow after work, I will add the spices and cook everything together. I’m hoping to get 3 or 4 jars of relish this time. 

Putting the veggies for the relish together
Then I began frying liver for supper and I cooked a cob of corn in the Tortilla Oven that I bought at Quartzsite last winter. It took 5 minutes instead of the 2 it said but that was fine for one cob. I had some olives on the side and by the time I finished eating, it was 7.

Delicious supper
No dessert required
With the dishes taken care of, I had already gone on and set up the programs for recording tonight. As I sit at my laptop, I’m watching the sky play its usual game of catch me if you can. I take a picture, download it and then the sky gives me something else to capture on film. Up and down for a few more times and I could hear thunder rolling across the sky too. I checked the weather and yes, we could get a thunderstorm tonight and early morning.

Pretty evening sky

I watched Wheel of Fortune, then Jeopardy before turning The Voice on at 8 pm. I should be able to get into my next book, 5th Horseman by J.P. This was a good day with a couple of visitors, some baking done, some relish almost made and a birthday for a very special guy. Happy Birthday, Bill! I love you!

thanks Jo-Anne for the picture
Good night all!

Thank you for stopping in.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Laundry on the Line, Some Groceries, Bill Packs and Heads Out

The Ridge
It was cool in the Suite when Bill first woke around 6:30 on Sunday, Sept. 29th so he turned the Blue Flame heater on. By the time we got up for good at 7:15 it had taken some of the chill off. Bill loaded the basket of dirty clothes into Ptooties and I washed, brushed my teeth and followed him outside. He stayed home today and had his coffee. It was 7:45 by the time I arrived at the Mat for my double-duty shift.

Doesn't look too encouraging for drying clothes, does it?
First off, I loaded 3 washers and then took care of business. I keep forgetting, until I get in there, to bring in 2 signs that got damaged during painting. Duh! I'll try and remember for next time. The sky was mostly clear blue when I left and so even though it was a chilly 10C/50F outside, I figured the sun and wind would dry the clothes on our line. I drove to Foodland and picked up a few groceries. A few things just for me; while Bill is away, I’ll eat differently.

French toast for a change with a red twist
When I got part way home from town, I noticed clouds had moved in. Lordy oh Lordy! Oh well, I’ll hang the clothes anyway as it isn’t supposed to rain. I backed the car up to the berm and came inside to put the food stuff away. Then I made my tea and decided to drink it before going out to hang them. It was quite chilly out there! Bill carried the basket up the hill for me as he always does. Spoils me terribly, he does! There was still no sun to speak of when I went out to hang stuff and I was chilled to the bone.

And our geese are enjoying the pond again

And still all in a row
Back inside, I got a text from Bill at the Hangar “can you give me a hand to carry the big plane out of the cargo trailer?”. So, we did that, no easy feat moving it into the Hangar. I had the heavy nose because he needed to do more maneuvering from the tail. I hope I don’t have to do that again anytime soon! He needs to empty the cargo trailer of planes so he can take it to Tavistock tonight. He and Bob will spend evenings building a front cupboard in it.

Backing up to the cargo trailer
I didn’t realize it was so late, already 10:30, so I used the last 4 pieces of marble rye bread in the fridge and made us French toast. It was yummy with either/or maple syrup from Jamie’s batch and my choke cherry syrup. That was a good choice as now I won’t be tempted to eat the bread while he is away. My goal this week is to avoid that kind of carb – mostly. I’m going to try anyway. While waiting to cook breakfast, I made up my 2 signs and then my new work schedule for the days remaining to clean.

 Bill went back outside while I did dishes and he measured the screen openings on our burned out firepit. He has already bought the replacement screening and left it with Rob. Rob will work his magic and make us new ones for our return in the spring. Other than burning cardboard, just to get rid of it, there won’t be any more ‘sit around’ campfires here this year. Inside, I noticed that the sun came out and now I’m at least hopeful for dry clothes before too long. I know it won’t last; the clouds are just as determined.

I lifted the scatter mats and swept the Suite out top to bottom. During our last week here, I will get the floors washed. Whether the carpet gets done before we leave is very, very debatable. It just isn’t working out with Bill gone all week. We’ll see. With that done, I took a walk out to watch Bill hook up the cargo trailer to Black Beauty. Boy, is she dirty! That is one of the biggest issues with not having water hookup up here. You have to go into town to pay for a wash and it just isn’t a priority right now.

A couple of times during the cloudy cool afternoon, I went outside to check the clothes. Each time, about 2 hours apart, I brought in the few that were dried. Even the east to west wind up on the hill didn’t seem to help, blocked by the trees. By 4ish, I brought the last items in, Bill’s jeans and a couple of my things. We’d decided to have an easy, early supper so he could be on the road by 6 pm. Jamie texted about not being able to get out to pay Bill today but we weren’t too concerned. Next weekend works well and he can pay both of us. 😉

At 5, I started getting the leftover basa filets, potatoes, carrots and green beans out for warming. Nice and easy! I sliced a garden tomato on the side to spruce it up and add a bit more colour. Perfect for the Good Housekeeping magazine? We will each have a piece of apple pie with cheddar for dessert, also warmed up nicely in the oven. The rest of the pie will go in the freezer tonight so I’m not tempted throughout the week. We can have more on the weekend.

See ya Sweetie!
I finished my Alex Cross story, Jack and Jill, and it was great and suspenseful right to the bitter end. Tonight, I’ll be watching my recorded This is Us on pvr so won’t start a new one (likely) until tomorrow. Bill is working on Lee Child’s One Shot. He knows that he has read it before but can’t recall how it turns out. Once he nears the end, he’ll remember, I’m sure he will. Ssssh! So, supper turned out good (how could I fail by pushing buttons?) and the apple pie was yummy with the cheese melted over the crust.

Drive safely!
I did dishes while Bill loaded the cooler bag and his Zero Coke in the truck. Then he was off. Pretty darn close to 6 o’clock, just as he’d hoped. He’ll meet Bob in Stratford where he’ll drop the cargo trailer and then they’ll go to their home in Tavistock. Weird, but that was hard to see him leave. Gotta keep busy tonight. So, I put dishes away and sat in front of the tv. It is still light enough out that I can leave the blinds open for a while. Heck, the sun (wherever it is over there in the west) hasn’t set yet. When darkness falls, the blinds will be drawn.

A little while before the sun sets but I didn't think I'd see it
This was a good day for a few more things getting taken care of. I added two new things to my list but tomorrow, a few more things should be checked off.

And as I looked out the window, I saw that I still had company
Good night everyone!

Thanks for your visit!

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Downright Damp! Book Published, Indoor & Outdoor Stuff

Up on the Ridge

It was a warm night for sleeping, it seems the heater is on and off every other day for a bit. The in between days are warm, almost humid. Strange weather, as I’ve said often this season so far. At 7:15, on Saturday, Sept. 28th, I crawled out of bed and once more had to abandon the walk. It was warm enough outside but a light misty rain wasn’t appealing. Who wants to carry an umbrella when they walk? Not me. So, I made my tea and sat with Bill for our first brew of the day.

Bill was cleaning out the garage, cutting up cardboard to burn
Bill said it had rained heavily overnight but, as usual, I didn’t hear a thing. We read some blogs as we sat here and Bill went online to apply for our winter travel insurance. We expect it to go up a bit each year just because that is the way of things, isn’t it? Well, it went up a lot! We deal with Manulife via Costco, as members, and have gotten pretty favourable rates over the last 3 years, with the expected ‘bit’ of an increase each year.

And here, I think he was sending smoke signals
We were shocked that it would be almost $1,000 more this year and that is regardless of age. It is an increase all over it seems. If you didn’t have one, consider yourself lucky because we checked out 4 other sites. At the end of our search, we just went with the same one since it turned out to be minimum $500 less than every one else. Bite the bullet, we need it. One of those things. The only thing we changed this time, for no higher premium, was we opted for the International coverage. Cross another item off the list.

making my own list
After that was done, he went to the Acreage to fill the water bladder. The tank was reading 13 gallons. When he returned, we had a coffee together and I made Bill bacon and eggs while I finished my quesadilla from yesterday. I sent him off to do some of the things outside and I did the dishes. What I did today was made up my own list. Bill has a list, on paper and in his head, we have a ‘together’ list in our heads and on our calendars and now I will have my own list. While he is away through the week, these things will get completed, as weather permits.

Bill worked on getting the garage/basement cleaned out and sorted and brought the satellite receiver up from the Hangar. This goes with us and he won’t be watching anything down there now before we leave. Inside, I decided to pull the 4 jars of apple sauce out of the fridge. I wasn’t 100% happy with the overall result when I made it. It seemed too thick and I knew we wouldn’t eat it unless we were fully enjoying it. I reheated it and added a bit of water and a bit of Splenda . Much better!

I almost forgot to get a picture of the jars of apple sauce
Once they were re-jarred, I decided I’d send a jar with Bill to Bob and Jo-Anne’s. Not sure if they like apple sauce or if he’ll eat it but we’ll see. I chatted back and forth with Jo-Anne about what to send with Bill and I think we have that figured out now. We all seem to be on the same page. Around 3:30 it was time for either a creamy tea or a ‘real’ drink so I opted for the tea. Often, it needs to be a warm day for me to imbibe.
How can such a small icon create such grief?
We're friends again though so it's okay
Earlier, I had a moment (about 15 minutes actually) of panic and tears, I have to admit. I had completed my photo book yesterday but wanted to wait until today to send it off to be published. One more peruse, you know. I have BookSmart as a shortcut on my Desktop along with other popular and well-used websites. I double-clicked, I right clicked on ‘open’ and single-clicked several times over at least a 10-minute span. Nothing. It wouldn’t open when every other shortcut I tried, did.

Bill got the Blue Boy strapped on, we won't need it again before we leave
I was getting frustrated and could only think of yesterday when I uninstalled BookWright, and wondered if they were connected and had I just lost my 20-page book? I did well NOT to toss my laptop. I did well NOT to swear a blue streak but I couldn’t hold back the leaky eyes. Bill calmly carried on across the table, on his own laptop, not wanting to say too much to set me off. He isn’t familiar with the program at all so I knew he couldn’t help and wasn’t expecting him to try. I was in a pout.

And there is the white pole and anenometer
situated just above the ladder
I shut it down and was going to sit and wallow in my teary loss. Before I did that, I powered it up and tried it one more time. Blessed relief! This time it opened! I guess I was being tested and apparently passed. Phew! I truly was thinking it was time to forget the whole idea of ever creating a book again. Long story short, I ordered it, published it and paid for it. Then, I walked away. Last year, it was about a week before we left for the southwest that I finished my book so I’m ahead of the game and should see it arrive within 2 weeks.

Still dull out there
We didn't see any sun until late afternoon and then it never lasted long
It wasn’t a very warm day. At least for me, inside, whereas Bill was outside doing different things and felt comfortable. I don’t like the dampness, my body doesn’t like it. When he'd finished for the day, the anemometer was up on its new pole (it would come down for travelling), the blue boy was up on the ladder, the receiver was connected to the tv in the garage and the garage was all cleaned out to make room for the things that need to go along with us. He completed a lot of things.

Carrots and beans in the inner pot

Chicken breasts ready for sauteeing
and potatoes ready too
He had some crackers and cheese when he came in and I had a peach for my snack. We sat together, he dozed and I read about Jack and Jill after getting totally stumped on the New York Times crossword. Who knows this stuff? I do enjoy the challenge though even if most squares are empty when I give up. 

and before the dark, heavy clouds took over, we had a pretty sky
At 6, after thawing them in the microwave, I sautéed two large chicken breasts, cut some carrots, potatoes and green beans. Supper was ready, in a one pot dish and we were eating by 7:00.

A good hearty meal - didn't need dessert tonight
After dishes, I worked on my blog and Bill turned the tv on for some evening entertainment. This was a bit of a lazy day for me and Bill, on the other hand, accomplished a few things. I hope yours was a good day too.

There was no sunset tonight and when the space station went over at 6
we were under clouds again so missed it
Have a good night!
Thank you for taking the time to see what we’re up to!

Friday, September 27, 2019

Warmth Returns Under Clouds, Double Duty at the Mat, Double Duty in the Yard

The Ridge

On Friday, Sept. 27th we were up by 7 and out the door soon after. We each made our morning brew in travel mugs as it would be a busy day. Bill helped me clean today by removing the lint from the big dryers and then dust mopped for me. Things looked pretty good and we were out of there in an easy hour. I know it takes me that long on my own so that is what I recorded for Jamie.

And the red sky this morning means a sailors warning
But this day turned out great instead
We left there and scooted home where we changed into clean clothes and then drove to Hanover. We wanted to get to the Bell store before it got busy. Friday morning, you know. Melissa, the gal who helped us first 2 years ago, was in and no other customers had arrived yet. Yay! We were there to return the half case that Bill bought for his A70 phone. He bought it as he needed something when no wallet style cases were available – anywhere in town.

The ReStore helped us out by taking our old electronics
The case was $45+ tx and we had 15 days to return it if we weren’t happy with it. When in London on Monday, we picked up a wallet case for him for $20 cash. So, getting the $50 back was a no-brainer. We walked across the street to the Holst Office Products store and picked up a black and a colour cartridge for our printer. The ink is really fading and could run out any day. The refund pretty much paid for the cartridge.

Brunch - yummy
Then we drove to the Habitat for Humanity Re-Store and dropped off the old Keurig and the old microwave oven. So easy and it is good to know that any electronic items can be taken there for disposal. Two things off the list. Back home, Bill hopped on the riding mower and went out to cut the front field. Inside, I finished yesterday’s post and then by 11:30 realized how hungry I was.

this would be a challenge for the riding mower
Apple sauce in the grass?
 I felt really chilled sitting inside but wanted to eat first before going out to put myself to work. The outdoor temp was no more than 55F and inside not much warmer at 62F. I started cutting up bacon, onions peppers and adding mushrooms, eggs and cheese for an omelette. It was when I was adding the eggs that Bill came up the lane and checked in to see ‘where are we at?’ I told him that in 5 – 10 minutes things would be ready to eat.

This garden needed to be trimmed for the winter
I gave him his on toasted rye and made another quesadilla for me. It was delicious and I saved half for another day. I offered to do dishes while he made a phone call to the Travel Agency to book our room for the Saturday night before we fly to Cancun. We’ve been tossing this around because of the price but decided that it was totally worth it for the night and a week’s stay for Ptooties. Otherwise, we’d be getting up at 3 am and driving to Toronto to catch the flight. No thanks. We know we wouldn’t be able to sleep with that on our minds. This way we can relax.

And as I'm digging in the garden, pulling the grass roots,
this guy moves to get out of my way

So, I tried to reassure him that I wasn't going to hurt him
and covered him
Cute to watch him burrow backwards but still keeping an eye on me
Can you see his black eye?
Bill went back out to cut the back field. I went out and started trimming and pulling grass up on the berm in the hosta and tiger lily garden. There were so many apples all over the ground up there. We’ve never seen that tree or any of the trees here produce so many apples before! I started tossing them over the fence until it crossed my mind that maybe Donna would like more for applesauce. When I texted her, her response was in the positive so I piled them for her to pick from.

So, I piled some apples for Donna
It sure helped to warm me up, working out there, and soon enough I took my sweatshirt off and grabbed a bottle of water. I do believe that is the last one, now I will just be refilling them with RO water from our fridge jug. Bill finished cutting grass and loaded the propane bottle into Black Beauty and a couple of other things he had on his list. Home Hardware in Durham was his destination. Oh, earlier he stopped at the bank to chat about our US cash exchange and how soon to order it.

When Bill finished cutting the field, he took me for a walk to see
a new path he'd cut back to the pond
I moved on to weeding and pulling large clumps of grass from my new and ‘prosperous’ plantings on the corral hill. The work wasn’t so hard, since there is more sand and rock than dirt, but the positioning on the hill is really hard on the body. I finished up, huffing and puffing like an old lady, and just left the pile of weeds at the bottom of the hill for later pick up. I sat on the patio until my breathing slowed down and I was refreshed from water. Not young like I used to be!

and it led me to a better view of the Turtle Log
Then, I got the long-handled clippers and trimmed some small saplings and trees down where Bill parks the truck. He’d asked if I would cut what I could without us getting the chain saw out. I’m a bit of a clutz, I guess, as when I was pulling on a branch I thought I’d cut, it resisted and I managed to cut myself. It isn’t serious but small cuts sure do bleed. I had to come up and run it under cold water and with pressure stop the bleed long enough to get Polysporin and a bandaid on it. Where’s Bill when I need him?
And usually I tell him to stop finding new places to cut
but I like this path a lot!
I worked on the area at the top of the hill
and tomorrow I'll pick up the pile of weeds at the bottom of hill
No big deal so I went out to put the clippers away and it was then that Bill drove in. With a clean laundromat, full fuel and propane tanks, grass cut, my stuff trimmed and dumped in the rubbish pile, we were done for the day. It was 3:30. Bill poured himself a Zero Coke and I made myself a creamy tea. I cut some cheese and we had a snack to get us through to supper. I knew it wouldn’t be long and my sweetie would be asleep and he didn’t prove me wrong. We’ve been pretty much go, go, go since we got up so I let him sleep.
and with just the right amount of sun and rain
my flowers are doing awesome

I sat beside him with my book and read a few chapters. Seems that other things keep getting in the way of our reading! Bill finished his Stuart Woods book last night so I dropped it off this morning in the exchange box. He’ll be moving on to a different author now. I had planned fish fillets and vegetables for supper and decided to bake the Basa in the convection oven. It was certainly a learning curve.

Learning or not, it was wonderful!
The fish took longer than I expected (my misinterpretation) and we didn't eat until almost 7:30 but it was delicious with my string beans and Bill’s mixed vegetables. Thank you, dear, for being so patient. To top it off, I warmed up 2 pieces of my apple pie and with cheddar cheese, it also was a hit. Because I picked the apples myself, there is an extra taste in there. I think it’s called a spicy, tart 'E' for effort. 😊 The pie did turn out pretty good. We took care of the dishes and I sat at my laptop to finish this post.

We're going to try this pie!

Good night everyone!
Soon, I joined him for the remainder of the evening before bed. This was a very good day and we crossed quite a few things off the list. Tomorrow is laundry day, so I’d better get the clothes sorted.

Thanks for stopping in.