Thursday, November 24, 2011

Friday, November 18, 2011

Critter and project updates

Still haven't managed to get to my computer for some real posting, so via iPhone pics, here's an update on some of what's been going on around here.

We were getting lots of these (like 18 a day), but cold weather and short days have the girls laying only 4-9 a day now. Haven't seen a white egg from Miss Blue in about 3 weeks. Either she stopped laying, or she's hiding them somewhere.

The girls are enjoying the new pen I fenced off for them.

And Dunderhead, with his wicked unruly eyebrows, seems recovered (knock on wood).

It is getting colder, and according to LJ, it started snowing after I left for work.

This is just pretty. Snapped while hiking the trails on our property. We've had some raging storms over the last week, so I doubt this lovely web is still out there.

I made this stool for our library so I can reach the top shelves, and I have begun organizing my books. I ordered a roll of dust jacket covers from Brodart, and have only managed to get about 1/3 of my hardbacks covered.

I also made a woodbox for in the house. I got the andirons for $8 at an antique show, painted them satin black (they were a really awful antiqued gold before), and mounted the box on them. I put legs on the back of the box. Works well, holds two sling-loads of wood, keeps bark and chips off the floor, and is PERFECTLY square. I'm pretty proud of that last part. :) (Please excuse the unfinished tile work on the hearth, and the lack of baseboard on the wall...)

Also been working on this little side table I just picked up at the thrift store. It took me about two hours to chip out that awful concrete and glass mosaic. Yuck. Makes me sad, as originally this little table would have had tiles made by, or in the style of, a company like Taylor, Catalina, or Malibu. I've had a few of these tables with their original tiles intact, and just love them. I'm going to refinish this, and see if I can get repro tiles that will fit. If anything, I only paid $7.95 for it, and have some mexican tile that I could make work.

I made some of this (mandarin ginger marmalade), as well as apple sauce and blackberry jam, and learned that the Ball recipes put too freakin much sugar in everything. Luckily, I've skimped a bit, except for the blackberry jam, which unfortunately came out painfully sweet.

I also took some of our pig fat...

And rendered some lard. It's awesome! Though, the crockpot method was gross, and slow, and a pain in the butt. A gal I know swears by the dutch oven method, so I'll try that next. If I don't get a dutch oven for my birthday next week (Mom hinted I would), I'll go out and buy one. We need one anyway. :) (Lard is cooling below. Came out pure white once fully cooled)

And that's about it for now. Gonna spend the weekend cleaning and prepping for Thanksgiving.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Simply the best dog ever

Ok, so he still wants to eat the new puppy, but otherwise he is the best dog ever.

So, I taught Henry at a very young age that nothing is his unless it is given to him. So, he doesn't chew things that aren't doggy toys, and doesn't steal food. I can put a plate of food on the coffee table, mere inches from his face as he sits on the couch, and he will not touch it. Cammi is an entirely different story, having eaten an entire hot pizza (stolen off the stove), a boiling hot bowl of soup, and many many other not-for-doggy foodstuffs. She once choked down a lemon wedge that had fallen on the floor, just so our other dog couldn't have it. I don't write about Cammi much, because I really dislike her. She's LJ's girl though, so I've got to tolerate her.

Anyhoo, back to my golden child, Henry. Last night we were having a pizza dinner in the living room while watching tv. I had left my plate on the coffee table (Henry on the adjacent couch) and gone into the kitchen to grab a drink. As I came back in he room, LJ tossed Henry the crust from his pizza, which bounced off Henry's big rubber nose and landed on my plate next to two big fragrant slices of pizza. The look on Henry's face was priceless... Sort of like that Reading Rainbow episode where Levar Burton drops his ice cream on his shoe. Heartbroken. He looked at me, at the plate, at me, at the plate, and flumped down on the couch with a huff and a sigh. "Henry, do you want that 'cookie'?" ...Ears perk up... "That looks like an awfully tasty cookie." ...glances at the plate and then stares at me... And then the key word, "OK". Henry reached his muzzle out to the plate and gingerly snagged ONLY the little piece of dry crust that LJ had tossed him, completely avoiding my pizza. Best. Dog. Ever. He got a piece of pepperoni as a reward. :)

I love this dog...


Spoiled rotten!


Bath tolerant


And yet also a total couch potato. :)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Still too busy

I've been a horrible blogger over the last few months. Problem is, there's still too much to do. By the time I'm done with whatever needed doing, I'm too tired to get out my phone or laptop and post something. Currently at the Oakland airport... Again. A last minute, "we need you down here". The flight was literally booked yesterday. So, I'm here until Friday night. Fun fun fun! I'm going to try, again, to use my free evenings down here to catch up on some blog reading. We'll see!