Tuesday, July 26, 2016

An Engaging Day

I have friends who post beautiful heart warming words in important events in their lives, or their daughter's lives.  
I don't seem to have any heart warming words to write today, but they are in my heart.

My daughter went to Ireland with her boyfriend and his sisters.

When she came back, she was engaged.

My dear girl, we are very happy for her. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Limping Along

I didn't take very many pictures this week.  Most of the pictures I took were ones of canned fruits and pickles and I put them on my gardening blog as a record of how the harvest is going.  
I canned peaches and bing cherries earlier in the week and a few pickles.  The beets are all into pickles and yesterday I did up 50 pounds of peaches.  Most of them went into jars but some went into bags for smoothies and sauce for cereal.  
Yesterday's job went more quickly than I expected. The peaches were huge, and the skins just slipped off.  Sometimes it isn't quite that easy. 

Big peach on the left, regular peach at the bottom.  


There was a rather gorgeous sunrise last week.  The clouds were funny, leftover from some rain in the night. 

The boys had haircuts last week. 



The boys are taking swimming lessons.  I try to get down there part of the time because Zane doesn't have anything to do while Barry and Christian have lessons.  Lorene is in with Christian for a 'mommy and me' class.  

Waiting time.

After I started this, which turns out to be a rather lame post I remember I had another more exciting post planned.  

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Goodness Snakes!

It would be really nice if I could remember what on earth I did last week.  I suppose I could
get up and look and see what the calendar says.  
Now some of it is coming back to me.  It rained a couple of days and nights.  One of them was accompanied with a tremendous wind.  
Since it rained I got out and weeded the flower gardens and helped Jim weed the vegetable garden.  That was a messy business, since it is a job I need to sit down on and I got pretty dirty.  
We've been eating yellow squash, green beans and cucumbers.  I picked what I thought were all the beets to make pickles, when Jim asked, "what are you saving those beets in the garden for?"
I hadn't seen them, partly because the row was pretty weedy and partly because my cart was full.  They aren't as far along as the rest since the rabbits ate the tops down once.  I took my cart full of beets to the chicken pen and cut the tops off there.  Those chickens would peck at them and then every time I threw another handful down, they'd scatter. 

One time the boys were here and they've discovered the joys of cutting down old plants.  I let them cut down these holly hocks because they had fallen down in the wind.  

Our summer apples are ripening and I put this many in the freezer.  

Cherries were on sale so I canned 2 lugs of them, some will go to my mom.  
I did about 4 1/2 dozen peaches as well.  

I'm practicing with a new camera.  There's supposed to be a defect in these photos.  It isn't obvious to me yet. 

I've also done plenty of knitting this week.  I was practicing a new pattern and working on a sweater for me.  
I'm sitting here thinking, what a boring week.  
I just remembered the most exciting thing of the week and perhaps the whole summer. 
At the beginning of the year I resolved to spend less time on facebook.  I haven't posted much of anything since then.  I did post the day I found a snake in the washer.  
Here’s the rest of the story:
I was pulling clothes out to put in the dryer when I saw this long skinny thing tangled in a pair of Jim’s underwear.  I dropped it and sprang back and the thing wiggled a bit, and I wondered what on earth to do.  I didn’t want that snake running around in my laundry room so I would come upon him again.  Jim was back home that morning but I didn’t know when so I opened the door and swished the underwear outside, snake and all.  I didn’t see him move so I wondered if I imagined him wiggling in the house.  When Jim got home I marched him over to where the underwear lay on the patio, and there was no snake!  He must have crawled away, I thought, but then Jim picked up the undies and there was the snake!  So that was the end of that.  Another use for the pliers and it got pitched out into the way back yard.  I still feel creepy when I pick up a pile of laundry.  I’m thinking he must have been in the pile of clothes before I put them in.  We have a vent pipe over our storm cellar in the basement and I’ve wondered before if they are getting in that way.

There is a little more to this story.  We figure the snakes crawl down the vent pipe that goes into our storm cellar that is hidden under a ground cover of evergreen stuff.  We've suspected that snakes live under there and yesterday I was wandering around the place and coming back to the house there was a snake on the sidewalk.  I hollered at Jim and that snake very calmly slithered itself under the evergreens confirming our suspicions.
Jim put a screen over the vent. 

The end.
Of snakes in the house, I hope.

A little boy with a little frog.  

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

A Muddy Fourth

The first thing I did this morning (well, after I cleaned up after breakfast) was wipe the mud off the tote bag we took on our trip this weekend.  
That's important because the mud was a big part of our trip to The Canyons on the 4th. 

The Canyons play an important part in the memories I made when visiting my grandparents.  We didn't go often. It's years between visits.
It's a longish and roundabout way to get there by car, and impossible to go all the way down without a four-wheel drive vehicle.   My grandfather bought the land for summer pasture back in the day and to get into it means going across somebody else's property. 
It isn't accessible to just anybody.  There are gates to unlock, curves to negotiate, and mud holes to get through. We go by the invitation of my uncles. 
The mud hole part is NOT NORMAL.  In all the times we've been there we have not had to navigate mud holes.  
However, it's rained more this spring than normal.  It rained the day before we went.  Therefore, there was mud.  

On the way down. 

Stopped with no way to get around. 


These four guys pulled Lila out with a tow rope. 

Then Uncle John went charging through and it was our turn.
And here we sit.  

We were loaded with passengers so all our luggage, food, etc. was in the back and got mud splattered.  We climbed out of the less muddy side and watched the getting out process from our picnic spot.  
Two jeeps are hooked up to pull our pickup out. 

And....they did it, by pulling out of the hole the pickup was in at an angle. 

Most of the picnic group. 

There have been several reunion picnics over the last 26 years.   Those that had young children are grandparents. Some who were children then have children of their own now.  Our grandparents are gone and another generation has taken their place.  The same games are played, the little ones spend all the time in the water, and there are still 
4-wheelers and jeeps in the creek.  The older ones watch the younger ones at play.  We eat and visit and enjoy each other and the day.  

Mom found a frog.  It's about 3/4" long.  

Here's a photo to prove we were there. 

You may be wondering how all those people in one of the above photos got down through the mud hole when I only have two pictures of stuck vehicles.  The rest were warned and parked in a flat place not far from the bottom and walked down either carrying their things or enlisting the service of a helpful jeep driver. 

Now we all had to get back out.  The walkers went out the same way they went in, but we had three vehicles to get out of this mess.  

Uncle John roared Lila's white vehicle right through, going through and up the steep and slippery slope hidden by the trees by coming from the side. 
Inspired by Uncle John's success, Lila roared his pickup straight through, and got stuck.  The two jeeps pulled her back out and her brother went right on through.  
Now it was Jim's turn.  He went without us so if he did get stuck we wouldn't have to wait or wade through the mud.  
He did get right through and as the watching crowd watched him rev up the slope we could see the first pickup right in the way.  Would Jim make it?  There was either more room than we imagined or Leonard moved a little farther along. 


Looking back.

We're out and on our way back 'home.'