Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Catching Up (a little)


Two bald eagles (and lots of weird stuff on my camera lens).

The adult.

I have not posted in....weeks.

Bison....Land Between the Lakes, near Dover, TN.

I have been pondering some changes and adjustments, plus we have been busy.  So, how about a post with a bit of catching up, before I start trying a new thing here and there, OK?

The Home Place  (I love it here!)

While I've been away, we were literally away for a few days.  Daughter and I traveled back to Tennessee to visit family.  We made the arrangements for the trip before we knew that Daughter would be going to the charter school, so she had some school work to do as well.  Since Daughter is learning about various aspects and points of view related to Western Expansion, we also visited The Home Place, an 1850's farm, and Fort Donelson.  We had a nice time with family, good weather, and good travel.  We stayed with my parents and spent all our time with them and my brother.  It was a short trip, but I am glad we were able to go and be with them for a few days.

Trundle bed, circa 1850.

The weather here at home has been very dry, and the garden is mostly finished.  I had planted some seeds for a fall garden, but I think the grasshoppers ate most everything as it sprouted.  The insects have such a head start on fall plantings - I have not had much luck with a late garden here.  The summer garden has been generous, though - lots of tomatoes, green beans, squashes, sunflowers, carrots, lettuces and greens.  The herbs have been wonderful too, and I've been able to put up a few things for winter as well.  We harvested Asian pears and have been enjoying those.  They are really sweet and tasty this year.  At this point, I am picking tomatoes, but I'm letting a lot of things wind down.  The amount of water I would have to use just doesn't work out for the amount of produce we would get at this point.

The other reason to let the garden wind down is because the chicks are growing and needed a larger space.  One of my gardens is half of the chicken run, so I'm picked the last few things from that space and moved the chicks there this week.  I'm going to leave the divider up for a while, because the chicks are too small to be in with the big birds right now, but this way they will all be able to see one another and get used to the idea of being together some day.  Hopefully this will make for a good transition.

Around the 'farm', we are working at various projects.  We cut down some old lilac bushes that were over crowded and overgrown.  We have plans to remove the roots, level the soil, put in some drainage and then fence an area that will serve as a more private back yard, barbecue/patio area.  There is still a lot to do, so this will probably not be finished this year, but having the plants out has really opened up the space and gives us a sense of what will be possible.  Husband has cleaned up and moved all the patio pavers that we have on hand (they are left from when we bought them last fall to put in a walkway to the front door), and we plan to use them for walkways between the garage and the house.

Next, lilac root removal.  

We' re-roofed a shed.  When the old shingles and tar paper were been torn off, we were happy to find that the decking is in great shape, and won't need replacement.  We completed the project, including cleanup and asphalt shingle recycling (it's a real thing - yay!) in parts of 3 days.  For other upcoming projects, I have paint to re-paint our front door, and I'm planning to trim a few branches on some trees in the front yard.

This has been taken for recyling.  It was less costly and better for the planet.  Win-win!

A fine job, if I do say so myself! :)

I have been volunteering at Daughter's school, mostly helping students in her grade with reading.  I stay for a little while when I take her in the morning, so it is fairly convenient and give the students some consistency too.  I've also been subbing some in the library district, and I've applied to work as a substitute at Daughter's school as well.  Daughter is doing well in school, and making good progress with the transition from virtual school to attending school with other students.  She is on her second 'cold' right now, which turned into a double ear infection...poor baby!  She is past the worst of it and recovering quickly.  This particular cold has visited all three of us, but we're all recovering, slowly but surely.

Technically, these wild asters are weeds, but they are part of my flower gardens this year.

Laundry on the line...it makes me happy!  I made this quilt almost 10 years ago.

We have continued to do the frugal things we do - planning a menu, sticking to our grocery budget, stocking up on sale items, making do and using what we already have.  I've gotten out some fall decorations that we had from previous years, and I've managed to avoid buying any new ones.  Fall decorations always tempt me - I think because I love the colors so much.  I was able to get a free 60 day pass to Sam's Club.  I purchased some bread flour and a canister of hot cocoa mix, and I'm considering a couple of other items.

I could probably babble on forever, but I think you get the general idea.  We've been busy...and sick...and adjusting to changes.  Thank you for your grace wh ile I was absent!  Now...you've had all this time off too, so leave me a comment and let me know how you're doing, pretty please!