Sunday, August 28, 2016

A Rest

Yesterday I discovered (AGAIN) that I am not the energy-filled young one I used to be :~(.

I came home from my weekly shopping trip absolutely exhausted. Now I know that much of that is due to the stress I've had due to my dad's passing.  But, "boy-howdy" it was still a shocker.  I had to sit down as soon as I got here & wait to unload the car - luckily no perishables. Then pretty much the rest of the evening was "trashed".  

I took mrD out to supper before I brought him back to his mom, then I came back home and just read or played a game on my phone - OK I know, what a waste of time! - until I went to bed early.

I got peaches yesterday from the farmer's market and will dry & freeze them before I go to the homestead for ceremonies & much clean-up work.  We may not get much of our corn this year due to the absences, but I hope to find it a good home before it is wasted.  Don't have to worry about the potatoes, though, as they will stay good in the soil until they are dug.

I finished off harvesting the onions the other day and they are now dry & ready to be put away.  Not a great harvest, but useful all the same.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Getting on with life

As my dad would say, crying just makes your eyes red, get on with living!

And, so to the best of our abilities we are doing so.

This week I've processed 2 boxes of pears = 11 Qts canned, 2 Qts frozen, and 10 trays of dried pear quarters (which will shrink down to small volume, but are OH SO GOOD!

I also tried drying some beans - first time for that & I shall see how they are when rehydrated.  May be an easier way to process than canning as one must use a pressure canner.

I see the apples are ready to pick, but I'm going to try storing them for a while in the refrigerator - not too long as they are not keeping apples, but maybe until all of the doing for my father's passing are completed.  

His interment at Willamete National Cemetary is on Setptember 1 with full honors.  Then our family will have a life celebration on September 10.  In the interim we will be trying to get everything on the place sorted, boxed and given to family members or sold.  The rest will be donated or have to be thrown out.  There is a LOT of things there.  My folks lived on the farm for over 65 years and as children of the depression there was not a lot of things that were just thrown out.

I shall miss them for the rest of my life !

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Again with the Murphy

only this time it is more than hard !

My father passed on Thursday - out in his garden, doing what he loved at the last.  He had been in good spirits; m&m3 visited with him on the way home Wednesday, they said he was in top form: "Grampa is there anything we can do for you before we leave?  Yeah!  You can pick up all those apples under the Gravenstein tree".  The #2 & #3 sisters spoke to him that evening and he was his regular self.  We still don't know what was the cause.  But, I guess now he can meet mom and stop missing her.

Then today, my #3 sister's family dog died.  Sarge was a good old boy and he will be missed, too.  It's a hard blow for her family on top of the loss of dad/grampa.

We are home from our camping trip - it was mostly good, if one discounts the bad news.  The weather was hot, but we have air conditioning in the trailer so can sleep at night before it cools down to the mountain night temps.  The yellow jackets were bad, but we ate inside to avoid problems from them.  


I got started on the sweater I'm knitting for this fall, but WHOO-WHEE that is a difficult pattern to follow.  I've had to do so many do-overs that I can't even remember how many.  I finally wote down the directions in my own hand just so I didn't get lost so much.  Still having problems, but not so many.  Well, as they say, you get what you pay for and the pattern WAS free.


OK, I think this is all I can deal with right now.  Grieving is a really heavy duty job.



Monday, August 15, 2016

Busy-ness overwhelms me

Picked two boxes of pears from one tree yesterday, finished picking the plums I could reach today.  Few pears on #2 tree and apples to go.  There may be a few fall raspberries, too.
Canned 3 more jars of beans & I'll pick them again tomorrow morning before we go camping.

It's been hot again and forecast for hotter yet this week. Luckily I can have the DD come & water the garden.  The chickens will be taken care of by the neighbor kid.

I had to tear out the beginning of my sweater.  I got the pattern wrong and I thnk it may be too small. I'm going to go up a needle size and it should work.  I am also going to write down the pattern in my own hand so I can keep better track.

Busy-ness overwhelms me

Picked pears yesterday, finished plums today.  Few pears on #2 tree and apples to go.  There may be a few fall raspberries, too.
Canned 3 more jars of beans & I'll pick them again tomorrow morning before we go camping.

It's been hot again and forecast for hotter yet this week. Luckily I can have the DD come & water the garden.  The chickens will be taken care of by the neighbor kid.

I had to tear out the beginning of my sweater.  I got the pattern wrong and I thnk it may be too small. I'm going to go up a needle size and it should work.  I am also going to write down the pattern in my own hand so I can keep better track.

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

WiP Wednesday

Today is an indoor day - it's raining so no garden or yard work.  We've had lots of hot weather so this is a bit of a respite.  
We've had beans from the garden, loads & loads of plums - I'm making plum juice & dried plums, too.  More to come, but thankfully I can give some away.

I ordered yarn for the third shawl society pattern - sent for some lovely grey from One Twisted Tree.


Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Wednesday worries

Some to really worry about and some to let go.

There's a fire in Wawawaii canyon on the Snake River.  The DD & #2 GS home is on one of the creeks emptying into the river and at the moment are safe from the fires, but around here one never knows what may happen.  Some cattle & a couple homes have been lost.  Prayers are for a quick resolution to the problem.

The heavy, heavy wind  broke my little Honeycrisp apple tree off right at the graft point, so we've lost another tree, but this time not to disease.  See here a VERY sad face.  The shade from and root invasion from; and the disease problems due to air restriction due to the "damn" poplar trees on our property line are leaving me no choice but to revamp our whole garden & orchard area.

Good news being that I got to remove the boot after my visit to the ortho doc yesterday.  I now have an ankle brace that I will have for a month.  The bone is healing well & I anticipate no troubles as I adhere to the "rules" so I can be free of problems. 

Wednesday worries

Some to really worry about and some to let go.

There's a fire in Wawawaii canyon on the Snake River.  The DD & #2 GS home is on one of the creeks emptying into the river and at the moment are safe from the fires, but around here one never knows what may happen.  Some cattle & a couple homes have been lost.  Prayers are for a quick resolution to the problem.

The heavy, heavy wind  broke my little Honeycrisp apple tree off right at the graft point, so we've lost another tree, but this time not to disease.  See here a VERY sad face.  The shade from and root invasion from; and the disease problems due to air restriction due to the :damn: poplar trees on our property line are leaving me no choice but to revamp our whole garden & orchard area.

Good news being that I got to remove the boot after my visit to the ortho doc yesterday.  I now have an ankle brace that I will have for a month.  The bone is healing well & I anticipate no troubles as I adhere to the "rules" so I can be free of problems. 

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

WiP Wenesday

A small lull in fruit production; blueberries, rest of black raspberries, Cascde berries & first crop of raspberries all piced & processed into the freezer.
Now await the plums, pears, and apples.

Started on some crocheted baby hats for the class I will teach in October.  I want to make sure all the patterns I have really do work out.  There is nothing as discouraging as trying to make something from a bad pattern.  And, FREE patterns are not often checked well.

It's hot here & forecast for more to come.  I'm watering the gardens & flowers now as there hasn't been rain for quite some time.

I've an appointment in a week to see the orthopedist - hope I can get rid of this boot.  

In OTHER BAD NEWS, my #1 brother fell from the roof of one of his chicken barns when he missed the ladder coming down.  A badly broken leg/ankle will have to be repaired with surgery & screws.  It will put him out of the picture for 6-8 weeks depending on how things go.  It's a good thing his son-in-law was learning the "chicken business" so he can take over the work.  A speedy introduction to say the least.

msH is enjoying her dancing lessons.  I hope she is learning a bit and will like to continue in the autumn.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Finish (trying) on Friday

Well, nearly all of the pie cherries are gone - a volunteer from Backyard Harvest came and picked some - and I'll have mrD finish up the rest for me this weekend.  I refuse to let the good crops go to waste.  I can find someone who wants them!

He will also help me get the fireblight damage cut from the apple and pear trees.  It must be removed and taken away so as to try to avoid more infection.  One can't win, but one can fight back.

Well, the car is in for the THIRD opinion on the tire wear.  We may have to just live with it or actually try to afford a different car.  See a completely unhappy camper here.

On the craft front; I had a very unhappy experience: some of the stitches in my lace shawl slipped off the end of the needle  and it will be a difficult task getting them worked back up from their ravel.  I will have to concentrate and it will be another roadblock in the completion.  I seem to be always behind in the KALs.  Oh well, it is not of real crisis importance anyway; just so I can get it done.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Murphy strikes again!

Difficulties come in threes, you say !!!!!  
Don't bet on it if mr. Murphy has you in his sights.

To begin, of course, is the broken ankle.  Adding to the party we find our range's brain has taken a turn for the worst (the upshot here is you CANNOT bake in the microwave).  the DH comes from the car dealer where he was getting an oil change & a tire rotation where he is told for the third time that the tires are wearing before their warranty AND, of course, they can find no reason why this sould be happening - the folks at Les Schwab had previously told us they could find no reason the first two sets of tires were wearing this way, so we had changed tire manufacturers.  So, if we cannot get an answer from a THIRD opinion it's pay for tires more often than usual at a pro-rated price or get a different car.  Then, the mister was planning to go on a charity motorcycle ride on Sunday, gets part way on the ride and the bike dies, he can't get it to start on its own and finally gets it started with a jump - needless to say he comes directly back home.  The Harley shop is closed on Mondays so he has to wait until tomorrow to get an appointment.  
One of my plum trees has had the main part of the trunk break off and less than half the tree is left - the #2 GS helped me today to pick up all of the plums that were lost and to haul off the broken trunk while the DH is at work.  More than half the crop was lost.  
And not to us, but to my lovely DD; she had the unfortunate experience of being let go from her job. Yes, the one where the employer came looking for her to hire, the one she really loved and the one where she was finally feeling like she was getting ahead of the game.  And there was no real reason given for the action - no bad work record, no complaints, etc. etc.  Just that old saw, I guess, that you can be "fired" for any reason  - real or not.

So far only one positive spin in the whole darn litnay is that when I went to talk to the repair people at Howard Hughes Appliance in Moscow they were able to suggest to me some things I could try that might help, so they would not have to come out & we would not have to pay for a service call.  The suggestions paid off - the oven started working again & the clock, too.  Let this be a lesson to you; DO NOT buy appliances from Home Depot, even if they are less money.  They have no repair department, the appliances are often not quite the same as the ones that are sold under the same brand in appliance stores and often they do not make parts for the Home Depot ones.

I've decided that once I save up for my greenhouse I am starting an account to have the gas plumbed to the kitchen & I am getting a gas range !!

Saturday, July 09, 2016

Back at the grind

Home from dad's - good visit - helped him with some stuff and the Mister got a BIG generator for the house (when our power fails - an too often unfortunate occurance out here).  My son came down for a bit of a visit as he starts a new job this next week but his missus is working too and, of course, not on the same schedule so could not come.
We shall have to make a trip over there come autumn, I think.

Got home to a veritable storm of produce: picked cascade berries, raspberries, black caps, a few pie cherries (luckily they will last for a bit longer).  It was raining for the last few days, but the fruit needed to be harvested, so I froze it right after picking so the wet did not hurt anything.  I'm trying for the first time drying some pie cherries.  I found a recipe for dried pie cherry pie.  I also will make some chutney as there are so many.  On top of that while we were coming by the Banner Ranch near Clarkston, WA we saw that they had apricots so I got a couple of boxes to dry & to can.  They are just for me as the DH does not like apricots - do I feel bad about that you may ask - bet you can guess the answer, LOL.  Then I picked the few peas that were ready; they were attacked by pea enation virus and the harvest was mighty slim.  I'll need to find a variety that is resistance for next year.

The #2 GS is here helping me with some things that I am just unable to do on crutches.  And, I went & picked up my 2 new hens from the man who had some for sale.  They are out in a cage in the chicken run so the "old" hen that survived can get used to them before release.  Need to have harmony in the chicken house.

drMolly, the BeanQueen