Thursday, April 30, 2020

A Different Kind of Day, Couple of Special Birthdays

The Ridge

Bill and I woke up between 6:30 and 7 and I got up first to get in the shower. When I finished, he got up and had his. Today is Thursday, Apr. 30th and two people who are close to us are celebrating a birthday today. Our friend, Keith, and our brother-in-law, Gerry. There are about 9 or10 years between them. Happy Birthday guys!

Happy Birthday, Keith!
Happy Birthday, Gerry!
It was a rainy, warm morning, already 10C/50F when we got up and the winds were calmer, at last. We had our tea and coffee and around 9:30 I started making something for breakfast. Toasted egg sandwiches today. After dishes, we hopped in Ptooties and took a drive. Bill had a delivery to make and we had a visit scheduled. 
I looked up and saw this through our sun roof

The sky today changed many times
and the temperature rose to 14C/56F
We drove through light rain, gray clouds, white clouds and even some blue sky poking through.

A socially distanced visit
Ken and Kim are even distanced!
Their home is full of surprises in their redecorating
and antique haven
We arrived at Ken and Kim’s home in Ingersoll. Ken is working on building a remote-control airplane and Bill had some things for him to aid in the process. We knew they had a large home although we’d not seen it yet, so when they invited us inside for a visit, we accepted. It was so great to see them after spending a lot of the winter months with them in the southwest. We’ve missed the Happy Hours.

Downtown Ingersoll
We visited safely, keeping the distance across their living room, and got caught up on things since we said goodbye on Mar. 20th. We said our goodbyes before 5 and on the way through Woodstock, stopped for a fast food fix at Wendy’s. 

There are some very old and picturesque buildings
in Woodstock

A private home

Another one

this one may have apartments because of the vehicle parking
It would be 7 before we reached Durham and that would be late to order take out. This was better and a change. I haven’t had a night off from cooking for over a month so it was quite acceptable.

The clouds were busy all day keeping cover

Entering Durham
It was 7:30 when we were settled in at home. The Suite was warm but felt a bit damp so Bill turned the b.f. heater up a bit and we relaxed in front of the tv. This is going to be one of my shortest posts. When it’s been a great day, sometimes there isn’t anything else to say. We enjoyed the drive and loved the visit. I hope you enjoyed the random pictures taken from our drive today.

Downtown Durham is looking quiet
We are looking forward to a more pleasant weather day tomorrow and some sunshine would be great!

At the Ridge, I was happy to see this little chickadee having supper
Good night everyone
Thank you for popping in! Your comments are always welcome.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Time for an Indoor Day, A Trip to Foodland

The Ridge
On Wednesday, Apr. 29th we knew what it was like out and were in no hurry to get out of bed. We could hear the wind howling and could only see gray out the window. The heavy clouds made sure that no light was going to get through and that could only mean we were in for some rain showers today. Such as it was, we didn’t get up until after 7:30. A couple of lazy bones.

My first picture is of our lunch today
We had our tea and coffee together while catching up on blogs and then after a quick wash up, Bill loaded the propane tank into Ptooties. We had finally run out after all his daily checking. Soon, we won’t need our b.f. heater (we hope!) so that usage will slow down significantly. I tagged along on the drive to Durham and popped into Foodland for the first time since last fall. Costco is great but when you want head lettuce, celery and green onions, they just don’t cut it.

I walked to the lane and Bill's Hangar was looking clean
but very wet

Walking down past the corral entrance 
FS Co-op, where we get propane is across the street from the grocers so Bill dropped me off and went to get the tank filled. I’m happy to have that ‘first’ trip over with and it was nice to see familiar faces in our Durham grocery store. They were very careful, spraying your hands when you entered and handing you a paper towel. Lines on the floor indicated the direction to go down aisles and with only about 5 people in the store, it was a breeze.

Father West Goose waiting

Now, isn't he pretty?
I think it is important to always thank the staff for being in at work. We appreciate them and I’m sure they’re happy to have their jobs as well. I left with my bag and Bill had driven across the highway and was in the lot waiting for me. The rain was just starting, very lightly. Yesterday and today I wore my new bulky sweater and it offered me just the right amount of heat for both morning ventures. It was already 8C/48F and not even noon hour yet.

It's little still but Bill said not to be discouraged
Back home, I skipped the wiping down process and the food items got tucked in the fridge. I made myself a coffee and Bill sat and recorded our purchases into Quicken, before transferring the necessary $ from our grocery account back into chequing. The winds are going to be the worst part of today although we are inside and not too bothered. There have been gusts already around 25 mph and the turbines are really wound up.

We didn't get dumped on at all with rain
but by the looks of the Bunky, you'd think we did
The winds were coming from the southeast today

The storage shed and outhouse also got a good wash
Note the sunflower wind sock blowing proud
We had waffles for lunch and decided on beer brat sausage for supper. I’d forgotten that we bought a huge bag of bird seed yesterday at Costco for a ridiculously good price. I remembered when I looked out the window this morning at a red winged blackbird trying to get his beak in the finch feeder hole. Oh well, they were such piggies the other day, they can wait until this wind and rain abates now. I looked out at one point and could see our sunflower wind sock laying across the shed roof so walked out to retrieve it before it ended up in the field.

Until it wasn't so proud
the string broke so I went out and retrieved it
Inside, I managed to finish my book and then walked down to the mailbox to pick up the local weekly paper and grocery flyers. That is nasty out there so after stopping in to see if the heater was helping keep the Hangar warm for Bill, I quickly came back indoors. The wind goes right through a person even in my warm sweater. 😊 I found another book but decided not to start it right away. I  got out my cross stitch for another bit of needlepoint instead.

I'm sure it drives the bigger birds crazy but the finches and chicadees
have half a chance of getting food here before it's gone
Around 3 I turned the television on and had NCIS keeping me entertained in the background. It is a good thing I’m not being judged on this cross stitch and that it isn’t one that has to be perfect for the overall appearance. My counting is a bit cock-eyed! I continued working and Bill came inside around 4 and sat at his laptop to begin a blog post. He has things to write about and wanted to get started.

Looking out the window to the west just after supper
My tummy was grumbling for food so I got up at 5:30 to start sauteing our beer brat sausages in Madame IP. Before I began our good friends, Ron and Loree, called from Rock Glen. What a great distraction! Ron, as usual, made us feel very special and I can’t say how nice it was to hear his voice and Loree’s, in the background. We chatted about CanAm, their Lance trailer and our situation up here on the Ridge. At one point, something was said that had Bill laughing uncontrollably. Typical conversation with Ron. 😊

It was a good supper
When we said goodbye, we all expressed the hope that we will be able to repeat our summer gathering, similar to what we held last year. We had so much fun. Thank you for the phone call, Ron, it made our day! I fried the brats, added a cup of water to the pot, returned the sausages to the trivet and then placed the inner pot with Instant Rice on top of them. It all cooked for 10 minutes and did a NR for 5. I am loving these sausages and will try to find them again when we need to restock. 

I had squash and Bill had mixed vegetables as his side. Creamy Jell-o with a dollop of whipped cream was our dessert. Yum, it was a great meal. After dishes, I wanted to finish this post so I could get back to my hobby for a bit longer. I looked out and was able to get one more sunset capture but it didn’t do it justice. This was a good day again even though not an outside day. We each did our own thing for the afternoon.

Good night y'all!

Thank you for stopping in for a visit.

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Hurry Up and Wait – Or So We Thought, A Nice Drive and a Nice day

The Ridge

Bill and I were up just after 6:30, on Tuesday, Apr. 28th. Before he got in the shower, I washed and tried to make myself presentable by adding some mascara and shadow to my eyes. Then I came downstairs as Bill had my tea made. I rewrote our long grocery list, splitting the items onto two pieces of paper. One for Bill. One for Patsy. Today, we are going to Costco in Guelph which is an hour and 15 minutes from home.

Small town water towers are cute
 We’ve heard stories from a couple of weeks ago where people have lined up outside a Costco (in London) for an hour and a half in cold weather, waiting to get in to shop. We’ve heard that some stores are only allowing one person per family in at a time and have witnessed that one first hand at Hanover’s Independent store. Not ideal when we have such a long list but manageable. That is why I divided the items. Worse case scenario, we would each take a cart since we each had our own Costco card.

Today was supposed to be a wet day with the forecast of showers and clouds throughout the day. It would be warm though, and that was obvious when I saw it was already 8C/47F when we got up. I think we left just a bit of heat on from our Blue Flame heater overnight. What a nice change. Yesterday, we had the power to electricity shut off all day as well as overnight and our batteries from the panels kept up nicely.

Our destination
So, after our morning drinks, we were leaving the Ridge at 8:15 am. We had a nice drive, through small towns along Hwy. 6 into Guelph. It was 9:35 when we pulled into the already full parking lot. There were people loading groceries into their vehicles and a line-up of about 20 carts with people attached waiting to go in. What?? We had checked online and their hours clearly said 10 am opening. We saw couples with a cart so knew that was acceptable and soon saw a sign that said 2 persons per membership.

As we approached the store, we saw the lineup
Politely, we were handed a spic and span cart and escorted to one of two lines separated by a row of skids/pallets. Clever! Alternately, and quickly I might add, we were guided down and into the store. On the ‘walk’ we saw a sign on the overhead doors that read:

Okay, so now we know but it would have been nice if they updated their web page since at least 'these two' seniors came from a long distance. Nevertheless, the store was quite packed. I saw half of the customers with masks and half of us without. I did keep my wool gloves on the whole time but Bill wasn’t concerned.

In line to go into the store
People were respectable enough and kept a decent distance if they didn’t have a mask and since there were no arrows on the floors, everyone just walked freely back and forth in the wide aisles. I felt no threat at any time. The lineup to check out was crazy, from the front of the store to the back. We envisioned a long wait and when they opened up 4 new checkout stations, we were directed to those. It seriously took no longer than 10 minutes to get checked through and out the door.

Cashing out - we stood back this side of the cart
while the girls unloaded, priced and loaded the cart
Bill stepped forward to pay
We were in the car exactly 1 hour and 10 minutes after entering the lineup and in the store for an hour. Some things we had to wait our turn to reach, until others moved on, but it was no hardship. Very well done, Costco employees! 

A limit on Cashmere t.p. at the other end
but not on Kirkland brand
We thought we'd stock up although we really didn't need to yet
Last time we bought it was last summer
Bill drove across the lot to the fuel pumps and topped Ptooties up with their cheap fuel. Who can grumble at 75¢/litre? We actually saw two stations in Mount Forest where regular gas was 75¢ or less and diesel at the same stations was 77¢/litre! Wish we had B.B. to fill her up too.

We left the store still bustling
The drive back home was uneventful although I felt quite tired, evidence of my being awake at 4:44 am. Yes, exactly! I couldn’t drop off again for some reason. With a stop at Rob and Pat’s to drop off a couple of items they needed; we were home shortly after 12 noon. I’d taken a few of our Nature Valley peanut bars for a snack but we were ready for lunch. I thought of soup but I couldn’t find the tomato, Bill’s favourite, so fried up a pack of mini sausage with eggs. That was AFTER finding room for all of our groceries.

The small town of Mount Forest was bustling too
Bill went upstairs to watch some tv and probably have a snooze and I went down to the mailbox to collect the mailbox. It was worth the trip, Mom got mail. 

The sky was unpredictable

Mother Goose in the west pond seems to be sleeping

Not missing a warm day, this guy faces the sky
It was quite nice out there, especially when the sun popped out, so when I came back I stopped in the Bunky to finish the puzzle before coming inside to start this and read a bit. I hoped I could keep my eyes open! 😊 

It's funny how they all stop eating and look at me
I think this fellow just wanted a profile picture
Look at those eyelashes
At 3:30 I made myself a creamy tea for Happy Hour and I can report that I not only kept my eyes open but I read quite a few chapters!

He looks bigger here in this picture but this little guy
is only about 2" across and he slipped into the water
At 5, I started spicing the 3 chicken legs and 2 thighs to cook in Rosy the air fryer. Last time, I had to keep cooking them, adding on minutes as they didn’t cook like they did the first time I made them. I’ll start with a longer period and go from there. Five pieces fills the basket so there will be more turning and switching positions during the cook time. While that was taking place, I prepared a 1/8th piece of a pepper squash for baking and some corn for Bill.

I loved this puzzle
Supper was ready around 6:15 and all 5 pieces turned out great. There’s always a wee bit of blood near the bone and I don’t quite understand that but the meat was cooked and the skin was crispy, just the way we like it. My squash was a real treat as I haven’t had it for a long time. For dessert we had some Jell-o pudding with whipped cream and that topped supper off very well. We did the dishes together, as usual, and sat in front of the tv for the evening.

Delicious supper!
I feel we accomplished a lot by going to Guelph today. First time to a Costco, first time to any store in these times is a big deal. We spent a lot of our grocery money but we have stocked up with a lot of things we were getting low of. It was a better day than we expected and didn’t get any of the rain after all. The temperature at 7 pm was a balmy 12C/54F and it is only going down to 5C/42F overnight. Another night where we’ll save on heat.

Another day ends on a good note
Have a good night!
Thank you for stopping in. Your comments are appreciated.