Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I have been Productive

I have been busy on several projects, and thought I would share them with you.  Above is the wall hanging I have been working on for Terry.  I'm at a bit of a standstill, because I don't have any "doodahs" that are characteristically him.  You have to put some personality into these things, and so far it is about me.  I will be on the hunt.

Here is the first bootie for my little grandson to be.  Yes, there is a second one, I just haven't sewn it together yet.

Today I made a batch of this moisturizing body scrub.  I found the idea in FIRST magazine.  It is made with olive oil, kosher salt, ginger and grapefruit zest.  You put it on your dry areas while showering, and then rinse it off, of course.  Leaves your skin marvelously refreshed and glowing.

I'm also working on some new knit hats, made with my handspun.  I met a lady on the beach last Friday who inspired me.  I'll share when I get some done.  For now, I think I will do some spinning.

A Wonderful Thanksgiving Weekend

I was so fortunate to get to spend my thanksgiving in Brookings, Oregon.  It was a 10 hour drive in miserable rainy weather, but once there, well worth it.  Above is a piece of driftwood on the beach of our hotel.

This is the view from our room.  The sound of the breakers hitting the beach was so lovely, and such a nice sound to fall asleep to.

This is the view from the back door or our room.

Here is the gang, during a walk on the beach.  It was the second walk for Terry and I, and a little bit of foul weather was on it's way in.

And look what I found!!!  I've been missing this glove for months!!

The beach at Brookings again, in the Sunshine.  We even drove the extra 4 miles to California.  How the geography changes as soon as you cross the border.  Amazing!

Here's Terry at one of the many stops we made along the coast on our way north.  The Oregon coast has so many surprises, it can take days to travel it.  We made it as far as Lincoln City on Friday, and spent the night at Siletz Bay.

Our morning walk on the beach at Siletz Bay with many people fishing for crab.  Across the inlet are hundreds of seals, basking in the sun.

Back at Terry's in Seattle, we are decorating for Christmas.  I had to make this arrangement from cuttings of a bush in his yard.  The fresh Rosemary infuses the house with a wonderful, warm aroma.

We were sent home with LOADS of leftovers, so I made Turkey Manicotti.  I cut the turkey up really small and mixed it with spinach, mushrooms, ricotta and parmesan cheese and basil.  It's topped with my homemade Kick Ass Spaghetti Sauce.  Yummmmmmmmy.  Tonight I will make the ham into a bean soup.  That will be the end of leftovers.

I am spending a few weeks in Seattle.  Before Thanksgiving, I became overwhelmed at the loss of my alpacas.  The purpose for my being on the farm was suddenly gone, and I felt lost and alone.  I sealed the place up, arranged for sitters and surveilance, and headed south.  I will be back and forth for the month of December, until I can feel my roots take place once again.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

My First Baby Project

I've made my first project for my Grandson to be.  Yes, it will be a boy!  I sure know how to act around boys, that's for sure.  This is a tag bankie.  There are three different kinds of ribbons sewn in tags around the edges for baby to suck on and feel.  It's only 36 inches square, my size of project.  I think I'm going to like making baby things.  Small and fast.  I've also started knitting booties.  I will wait until after the holidays to get going on more sewing.  I can't sit in front of the TV when doing that.

I found these in the garden today, so I MUST pickle them, right?

I walked out to the barn this afternoon and found all of the doors and gates standing open, and I started crying.  I cried my eyes out while putting everything to rights.  I know I have some hard times coming, with the holidays and the anniversary of Alan's passing.  My entire life has changed, and I'm really struggling.
Thank God I have this incredible man to help me through it all.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

I'm Crazy

I'm feeling much better today, even though I had a very rough night.  The pain from these spider bites is pretty bad.  Today it is much reduced, so the antibiotics are starting to work.  Happy, happy.
So, First off, below is a picture of the first batch of mushroom dying I did.  Pretty funny that the fiber has a slight green tint to it, when the mushrooms were orange.

The fiber is sitting on my heat register, and there are my dying gloves next to it.  Below are the mushrooms I used to obtain this less than exciting color.

And, here is my latest skein of yarn! 

Then on to the domestic side.  This is why I call myself crazy.  I was feeling sooooo bad yesterday, but all of my carrots were cut and just waiting to be canned, so I HAD to finish the job.
They are pickled with dill, garlic, and some dried peppers.  I love the way they kept their colors.  Calico Carrots, hehehe.

These are some pickles I did several weeks ago.  My son tells me at the top of the Ritz in San Francisco, these are served in Martinis and called "Palm Olives".

They are actually green cherry tomatoes, the very last on my vines before it froze.  They are supposedly a very nice cocktail treat, so I am looking forward to serving them and trying them out myself.  I promised my son the big jar for Christmas, since he liked them so much at the Ritz.  He had his martini there the night he and his wife got engaged.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Darn Spiders

My son, who is now 29, still screams like a girl when he encounters a spider.  For as long as I can remember, though, he would not let me "dispose" of the critter.  I had to take it outside.  Well, I've turned over a new leaf, and if a spider comes into my territory, it gets stepped on.  Unfortunately, the other night, one apparently crawled into my warm cozy bed with me and had a feast.  I have three bites, two of which are infected.  One bit is on the tip of my right pinkie and the red stripe runs to my wrist.
Soooo, I went to the doctor today.

This is one of her exam rooms.

Isn't it amazing?  I think my blood pressure always registers low when I am in this room.

Her other room is an African Savannah.  A high school student painted the rooms in 2003, I believe.  I think it was his senior project.

So anyhow, I'm on antibiotics and in alot of pain and just pooped out.  Even so, I did manage to get my carrots pickled, and I will write about that tomorrow.

Monday, November 7, 2011

A Funfilled Weekend

I had another wonderful weekend in Seattle with my Terry.  I took the bus down this time and it was uneventful.

I took this picture of an old shipwreck on my way home today on the train. 

Aren't these just amazing??

Last Week, Terry had noticed these mushrooms growing in the garden of his parking lot at work.  I got all excited and insisted on a bike ride there to collect them.
No, don't get excited.  I'm not going to eat them,

Look at this amazing color.

Here's all 4 types we collected.
I'm going to dye fiber with them!!!

Here are those big guys bubbling away in my crock pot.  Yes, this one is dedicated to dying fibers.
I'm going to get as much color out of these as I can, and then try some fiber in the pot tomorrow.
I didn't have time today because no sooner had I gotten home, the power went out!  It was out for 4 hours.  By the time it came back on, I was wearing about 5 layers of clothing and wrapped up in an alpaca blanket, napping in my glider.

Alas, I still had to deal with these.  Remember I just put all my canning gear away?  Sigh.  I just can't stand to see produce go to waste.  These are from my fields, grown by Growing Washington organic farmers.  There are three colors of beets buried under there also.
The carrots are going to be beautiful pickled.  I like the many colors they come in.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

I fought the Lawn and the Lawn WON

It seems like not long ago I was fighting with lawn mowers.  I resolved that problem, partially, by hiring a guy to do my yard.  I continued to mow the fields that were not being used by Growing Washington.  Well, yesterday was a bright sunny day, and it looked as if I had a small window of opportunity in which to mow the lawn one last time before winter sets in.  We've already had frost at night.  Interesting aside here:  Last year this day it was 74 degrees!  So anyhow, I would have had my lawn guy come, but he was not available, and yadda yadda.  So I barely got started with the lawn when my John Deere broke down.  Sigh.  I crawled around on my hands and knees for awhile, trying to assess what was wrong, knowing that I know absolutely nothing about vehicles of any size or shape.  So there she sits.  Next week Terry will come and take a look at her.  I did get the job done with my old Lady Bug, but I swear she has no cutter blades left.

 I then decided to make another batch of homemade, canned spaghetti sauce.  I had made some a couple weeks ago, and since it turned out Fantastico, I wanted to make more.  I started by using canned tomatoes from last years crop.  Fresh herbs, Pasillo peppers, and it cooks for at least 5 hours.  I ended up with 16 pints.

Last weekend, I made Mushroom and Spinach Manicotti with my sauce for dinner.  Here is our breakfast the next morning.  An omelet with red peppers, mozarella cheese, and my awsome sauce.

So, the last 4 months, I've been really struggling with some "head" issues.  I had a CT scan, then an MRI, an appointment with a Neurologist, and today my eye Doc.  Seems in July I developed an extreme change in my double vision, and I've been miserable ever since.  When the doctor told me he had a fix, I started crying with relief.  I get my new glasses next week, and I can hardly wait.

Now I need to go clean up my kitchen and put all my canning supplies away.  That's it for the year, so she says for the 5th time.  We shall see.