Tuesday, May 31, 2011

It's this heat that makes me crazy ...

Tuck and I were walking down the road toward my house, within a tenth of a mile from home, when a neighbor from about a half mile behind me came walking UP the road toward HER house with HER dog. It was nearly dark, so we didn’t notice each other until the dogs started in. Tuck is very protective of his domain, so he was NOT happy to see anybody on the road in front of our house. The road passes between our house and our barn, so he considers it part of his personal property which he will fiercely defend against all foes. Especially dogs and a certain UPS driver.

She grabbed the collar on her dog, and I took off on a run to catch Tuck, fully expecting it would all end with me picking broken teeth up off the ground after tripping on a rock or something. Happily, we averted a brawl, and both wondered what the other was doing out walking this late.

The funny thing is that we neighbors around here hardly EVER see each other at close range because the nearest houses are about a half-mile away, except when we all seem to be out walking at the same time. And we all seem to have dogs as walking companions, so we don’t travel together. Ever.

When her dog was a puppy in training, this neighbor thought we should “socialize” our dogs. Excuse me? I’m afraid I’ve not told Tuck he is adopted. He doesn’t know he’s a dog, and I asked her not to tell him. The neighbors already think I’m nuts, so it doesn’t matter what I say any more. I amuse myself by reinforcing their opinion of me as oft as I can.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Do you know what you're looking at?

It's a mother cat with her litter, in the hollow of an old tree trunk.

I was working on hauling soil and plants back and forth in the hot sun, stopped in the shade of the old maple tree and happened to notice them all nestled down deep inside the hollowed out trunk. She's a motley-colored barn cat, but rather tame because the grandkids play with her when they're around. She has three little kitties the color of that part of a Creamsicle where the orange sherbet blends with the vanilla ice cream. Anybody want one when they're old enough?

Friday, May 27, 2011

Oh, what a night!

Whew! I wish the current weather pattern would cut us a break. We got bombarded by large hail and torrents of rain. Tree branches came down. But at least it didn't develop into a tornado, even though we were under a "watch" condition again.

Last night I was "out" at suppertime, so didn't get dinner until I got home. That was very late because I got caught driving in one horrific storm after dark. It rained bucketloads, which made driving alongside the big rigs a scary process. I opted to stay in the slow (verrrrrry slow) lane rather than risk being shoved into the barrier by a "drifter" who couldn't stay in his/her lane. Temporary road signs flopped over by strong winds onto the driving lane in the construction area made the drive even more fun. NOT!

The sky burst into a spectacular sight every few minutes -- lightning like I've never seen before. It was sideways lightning, for the most part. Hugely long streaks that looped and curled crazily like my hair in the morning -- flashing across horizontally for vast spans of the night sky. I normally am like the dog who hides under the bed during a lightning storm -- I'd prefer not to see it, thank you. But surprisingly, the thunder was not that nerve-wracking crackling kind, so the light show was not so scary. It was actually kind of neat.

Then, as I got nearer to home, I was met with this scene. It made a frightening sight to behold from a distance, but I knew from experience what to expect when I got closer. If I didn't know better, I'd have thought there was a barn fire. (The gas well on the farm next door is at that stage where they burn off the gas, for whatever reason.)

Anyway, when I got settled in the house upon my return, I headed for the kitchen to see if there was anything available for quick eats in the fridge. The fridge was dark. Uh-oh. Maybe the bulb burned out? Nope. It was the circuit breaker. Good thing I was hungry when I got home, or the fridge would have been off all night without being discovered. After I re-set the breaker and had a snack, I was too wound up to sleep, so grabbed a book and jumped into bed.

I read a few pages and heard the fridge go silent. I've mentioned in the past how the hum of that thing in the night makes me nuts, so when it goes silent, it really grabs my attention. Back to the cellar to re-set the circuit breaker again. Then back to bed and the book.

A few more pages and the lights went out. This time it wasn't the circuit breaker. The power went off. While I lay there trying to decide what could be done about it at this late hour, it voluntarily came back on. And off. And on again. I gave up and went to sleep.

In the morning, I immediately noticed the power was off, but while I was looking for the electric company's phone number, it came back on. Yay! So what will today bring, pray tell?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

At about three o'clock ...

Peggy finished The House Divided (civil war repro quilt).

That was after she did this (before lunch):

... while Nancy had her introductory lesson on the machine.

And what did I do? Nuttin', Honey. Still no energy.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

A bouquet for May 15th

DH ran into a fellow he used to work with at the store. They talked a bit about how much the guy is now enjoying his retirement, and how he spends a lot of time in his wood shop. He said Young Andy helped him get his shop all fixed up in anticipation of the day he could leave his job and start doing what he really enjoyed. With tears in his eyes, he told DH what a good guy Young Andy was. He would have turned 40 today. And it's nice to know he's not forgotten by his friends.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Turdus migratorius ...

Oh, my! Did you know that is the official name for the American robin? Heh-heh … looks like that must mean migratory turd bird, no? Thinking on that reminded me of a saying from my childhood that was oft repeated when I was particularly tickled about something, and my parents noticed: “you’re as happy as a turd bird in the rain …” Those old sayings always make me wonder where they originated, and this is one that seems to make a lot of sense. Robins make a series of cheerful musical whistles; they are one of the first signs of Spring, so accompany the early rains. So there ya’ have it!

This lone egg must not have been fertile. Down on the ground, there is the broken shell of an already-hatched baby bird. Considering robins rarely leave their nest for more than five or ten minutes when they’re hatching eggs, the fact that I was able to go to the house to grab the camera and get back without the mother ever returning, my guess is that it’s abandoned. Awww …

Google "turd bird" and you may find a string of amusing things to waste time with! Of particular note, there's an item that describes a "souvenir" kind of thing that was sold in a restaurant chain. It was actually a ball of dried poop fitted with googly eyes, and a little sign for the state in which it was sold. One for every state (maybe not Hawaii), they were collectible! Oh, my! Oh, my! ... some people will buy anything!

From there, I drifted over to a site where there are listed four management lessons. One of them went like this: "A crow was sitting in a tree, doing nothing all day ..." to the envy of other critters on the ground. It ends like this: "To be sitting and doing nothing, you must be very, very high up." Think about that for a while. Pretty amusing.

Now I must stop sitting and doing nothing -- I'm not very high up at all.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Harvest Has Begun ...

Mmmm ... picked THIS this morning. Lots more where that came from. Now all I need is some energy to do something with it.

I've been so sick I've not had much energy to do anything. These baby quilts are due to be turned in at the quilt guild meeting on Thursday. Cathie and Linda wanted to know if you can load more than one thing at a time on the machine ... here's proof positive. I got both of them quilted in less than an hour this way. Here's how: I basted the backing pieces end to end and loaded them as one, in such a way that I could get the most quilting done in one pass, across the two quilts. It took 12 minutes per pass, times four passes. Ta-da! All that was left to do was the binding. Barring calamity, I think I'll have them done on time for collection for Quilts 4 Kids.

Monday, May 2, 2011

THAT is scary!

Aside from the fuzzy white hair that insists on standing straight out from my scalp as if I lick electrical outlets when left unattended, I got quite a start this morning when I glanced in the mirror. I used to wear my hair long so I could bundle it into a ponytail -- at least it gave the impression that I was TRYING to control it.

I think I broke my eyeballs! I've been feeling like a train wreck for a couple of days, and the worst symptom is an horrendous cough that feels like I'm going to hack up a lung at any moment. It gets worse at night, like coughs usually do. I got up to broken blood vessels in my eyes. What a startling sight!

When DH came home, his only comment was, "Yow! What happened to you?" Yeah. Exactly!