Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Westward-Ho!

I am heading out west tomorrow. 

My perpetually-packed bag is ready to go.  Why do I keep a perpetually-packed bag?  It just makes life easier.  In it, I have any toiletries, aspirin, socks & undies, jammies, sunscreen and hat, a small pillow, a great hairbrush, a swimsuit, a couple of small books, my small King James Version Bible, my "hotel slippers", some chocolate, miso soup, and other sundry items.  Into this perpetually-packed bag, I throw whatever clothes will fit the bill of the clime to which I am travelling. 

Heck, though: what do I throw in tonight?  This morning it was 7*.  Coat, hat, mittens, turtleneck, snowboots, for tomorrow's Ccccold sunrise.  And then, lighter, yet-still wintery apparel.  And finally?  I don't know.  A t-shirt?

Well, whatever.  As that Spouse o' Mine once said, "There's a Wal Mart in every city."

So, stay tuned.  It's going to be a whirlwind of a trip, I kid you not.

Monday, November 17, 2014

We Love the Animalia

Out here in rural Kansas a few years ago, after some sad feline losses, there seemed a need to fill those losses - both with happy kitty acquisitions, and some "we-need-some-serious-mousers".

I perused the Petfinder Ads: https://www.petfinder.com/ 

Loads, LOADS of animals.  (Note: we have acquired many GREAT pets from this site.  Do yourself a favor and check it out before you look for the perfect purebred puppy mill.) 

And so, I saw an ad for a kitty cat not too far from our home.  She was needing a new home soon.  Her owner was in hospice care, and was searching for new homes for her multitude of cats.

Online, the owner told me she was an outdoor cat, and online, I responded that I would take her.

Sight unseen.  Thinking: Mouser

I went and collected said kitty-cat.  She was so old, even back then.  She walks like an Egyptian.  (Sorry: only 90s Steve Martin fans will enjoy.)  But we love her.  We did not love her name, Squeaker, and we did not love her never-ending Squeak about food or water or PET ME!!!

Now, Poor old Squeaker has no lower teeth.  She still walks like an Egyptian.  She wants to play, and play, we do.  She drools a lot.  Is this from lack of teeth??  She sleeps a lot. 

We love old Squeaker.  What is her history?  Who knows. 

If you have time in your life, think about your access, your wants and needs.   Elder animals are THE BEST.  And they deserve it.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween and Major Freeze Warning...

Halloween night!  We have nighttime forecasts of 21*, and so Old Man Winter must be trick or treating tonight with all the kids.  Yikes!  The last two hours of daylight this evening saw me hauling in plants I might like to over-winter: bougainvillea, heliotrope, and more.

Last week I planted fifteen new lavender plants out in the Lavender Patch.  Tonight, I covered them w/ jars (a la bell jars/cloche jars), and then went into overdrive and covered THOSE with Styrofoam cups topped with inverted terra cotta pots.  This, after I watered them all this afternoon to prevent root freeze.

I have never been a worrier until I began this lavender thing.

Halloween: the past couple of years we have not even turned our porch lights on (Bah~! Halloween Bug!) because there really have not been any kids in this neck of the Thousand Acre Wood.  (Winnie the Pooh fan, anyone?)  But this week I was given the heads-up that we might be having FIVE Trick or Treaters on our porch tonight.  I ventured out this morning and got a few bags of piddly candy, but I also got five boxes of Swedish Fish.  Ha ha ha ha!!  My kids used to LOVE Swedish Fish!

Here it is, soon to be 8:00 pm, and nary a trickster nor a treater.  (SPOILER ALERT: If you are one of my adult kids and you are reading this, you might want to stop reading NOW.)

Ha ha ha ha ha ha!  I bought large boxes of Swedish Fish (the movie size) because I know my kids love them.  ha ha!  Since I am not seeing any scary faces peering through our porch windows, I am thinking that Halloween 2014 is a bust.  Happily, though, I have it on good authority that Santa Clause is a tremendous recycler. Ha ha!  How great is THAT?!!      

POSTSCRIPT:  The Swedish Fish have been got.  Sorry, adult kids...

Monday, October 27, 2014

Dinner Tonight!

Dinner tonight was a little late, although not outlandish.

We had:
Smoked chicken, with very, very fresh garden tarragon cream sauce,
Baked potatoes,
And very, very fresh garden greens with steamed fruits (prunes, golden raisins, and apples)
Oh!  And baked bread.  Homemade.  No-nonsense baked bread.  Easy.  Email me... 

Friday, October 24, 2014

Spiders. It IS October.

We live in an old, old farmhouse.  A bungalow.  I would describe it as Craftsman, given the incredible wood trim and detail in the interior, but ca. 1887 Old Farmhouse was around decades before trendy Craftsman, and so there we have it: Old Farmhouse.

For years I ran my in-home business (www.bio-works.us) out of the comfort of our first-floor study. It is adjacent to a bathroom and the kitchen, and, if tornado needs-be, the basement.  This worked out very nicely until one day I woke up with the epiphany that I would not have to frantically toss all business-related material into brown grocery bags and haul them into the study closet every time we have overnight guests, if I would simply move "BioWorks" upstairs to one of the empty nest rooms.  (Our study has a really comfortable bed, a darkened room, adjacent to aforementioned bathroom and kitchen, and if tornado needs-be, the basement; it is always our go-to room for overnight guests.)

So now my little office is upstairs,  nestled in a nook of dormers which overlook the front of the house.  I can see the field across the way, which this season is sporting dusty rows of soybean.  I can watch cars and trucks and farm implements heading hither and thither.  (I can always tell, even before checking the weather, when rain is anticipated, by the activity of the farm implements out & about.)  I can wave at neighbors walking past, and even bang on my closed windows at cyclists/friends going by.  The UPS and Fed Ex folks know to honk and look up at my windows to catch my attention.

The past few days, I have had my own little Charlotte's Web going on in one of my dormer windows.  This spider is busy, busy each and every morning and afternoon, making a web in the same place, catching little "things" which have the unfortunate circumstance of alighting in her/his web, and then the whole web-spinning/blood-sucking. (What?!  You've never read Charlotte's Web?!!)

Which brings to mind my other arachnid friend, a Daring Jumping Spider which took residence in my car on the way to Colorado last week.  Daring Jumping Spiders are daring in that they jump, but they are harmless to humans and are sort of fun to watch.  Well! This spider showed up on my drive to Colorado.  He crawled out of one of the air vents.  I let him go A) because he is harmless, and B) I was driving 75 mph.

Each day after, I would get into the car and commence driving.  After several minutes, there would be Daring Jumping Spider, showing his existence in my car by floating down a spinneret from an air vent, or landing in my lap, or crawling along the passenger seat.  Whenever it was safe, driving-wise, I would scoop him up with the plan of dropping him out the window. But he had his own plans, and each scoop-him-up ended with him dropping down onto the floor of the car.

I haven't seen Daring Jumping Spider since I returned to rural Kansas.  Maybe he liked the higher elevation of Breckenridge.  As for my own little Charlotte's Web outside, I can see she/he has begun another web now, at dusk.  In that beyond these dormer windows and my "office" is also my Art Room, and I intend to spend time creating this evening, I suspect Charlotte will not be going hungry in the next few hours as the interior light begins to attract buggy visitors...
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