Friday, August 31, 2012

Verbatim ...

We took the grands roller skating the other day. A little boy about five years old came in and began a conversation with DH and me while he put his skates on.

Boy (to DH): "Are you going to skate?"
DH: "No."
Boy (to me): "Are you?"
Me: "No."
Boy: "Why not?"
Me: "Because I don't want to fall."
Boy: "Why? Are you afraid it will hurt?"
Me: "Yes, I am. I broke both of my arms once and that hurt. I'm afraid that if I fall, I will break them again because I'm kinda old."
Boy: "Oh. Did it hurt a lot?"
Me: "Yes, yes it did."
Boy: "Did you cry?"
Me: "Yes, I did."
Boy: "I hope I don't fall down and cry."
Me: "Oh, you look like you'll be a good skater. I don't think you'll fall down and cry."
Boy: "Oh. When did THAT happen? I mean, when did you fall?"
Me: "A long time ago, really."
Boy: "How old were you?"
Me: "Fifty."
Boy: "Whoa! Hold old are you NOW?"
Me: "Sixty-one."
Boy: "WHOA! Do you think you'll live to be 100?"
Me: "Oh ... I hope not."
Boy: "You look like you might live to be 100."
Me: "You think so?"
Boy: "Yes."
Me: "Oh dear ..."
Boy: "Well, I'm going to skate now. I hope you live to be 100. I think you will."

Well, if I DO live to be 100, I hope I run into more little fellas like this one.
I rather enjoyed our little conversation.

“If you live to be 100, I hope I live to be 100 minus 1 day,

so I never have to live without you.” 

-- Silly Old Bear

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Teaching by example?

"Wouldn't it be fun if PaPa could fix up the old pony cart and we could get Joey to pull it for us?" (notice the wheels procured by cannibalizing old bicycles)

Now, it seems the cart will work. But will we be able to convince the donkey that this will be fun?

(I think Joey is saying to the little lamb next to him,
"They've got to be kidding me, right?"

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Oh, help. I'm drowning ...

... in tomatoes. Here's what I picked this afternoon. I ran out of time before I could get the rest. (Actually, I'm bragging here -- not complaining! It's what gardeners do, right?)

This morning I worked on the 'maters I picked Friday whilst the grands played together. Tonight I'll be quilting (tired of tomatoes for now).

Look at this perfect little quilt made by Nancy C and given to me when she was here last week:

Don't fail to notice the background fabric is a flock of sheep. I LOVE it!

Friday, August 24, 2012

"I don't know why ..."

It’s a stupid habit …

When I go to the barn every morning, I first pour myself a cup of coffee and take it out with me. I set it up on a tall fence post where the horse can’t reach to knock it down. I’ve learned. The hard way, of course. The horse (yes, the same one that steps on my foot every time I try to lead him anywhere on a rope) WILL knock my coffee cup off the fence post if I leave it where he can reach it. But the post that holds the gate is much taller, and has a good flat surface on which to plop a cup of coffee. I can grab it and take a swig every time I pass the post – heading for the chicken coop, the sheep pen, the goose pond … whatever. But this has GOT to stop. I absolutely MUST get out of the habit of taking coffee with me.

It’s not that I intend to stop drinking the coffee. It’s not even that it’s sillier than all get-out to have to play this game to outwit a smart-alek horse. It’s the bugs. Twice this summer, I grabbed the coffee and took a big gulp, only to wind up with a bug in my mouth. Once, I’m certain it was a fly. Oh, gag! I wanted to barf, and just couldn’t get the idea out of my head for HOURS. Even though I was sure I spewed it back out without swallowing it, I could “feel” it in the back of my throat. The ditty “I don’t know why she swallowed a fly … I guess she’ll die” kept spinning around in my head. Just thinking about it now makes me creep out – it is SO-o-o- repulsive! And then this morning, I don’t know WHAT it was, but I’m sure it was a bug. Something tells me it was a spider. (oh, yes ... PLEASE tell me it is truly just a myth!)

Speaking of spiders, we have most of the spiders in the universe right here on our farm. At this time of year they show up everywhere. I see some fantastic webs in the early morning when the dew is on them, making them impossible not to notice. Those black and yellow garden spiders make the most fantastic webs. They are huge, and look like there’s a zipper in the middle! Too cool. But also kind of creepy to happen upon unexpectedly when bending over to pick tomatoes and finding your nose an inch away from it with Madame BlackandYellow at home. Oh … and there’s a spider who lives behind the mirror on the side of my car. Every day I wipe it’s web off, and every night it spins it back. Crazy-persistent thing!

Nancy C spent a long day here quilting her CW quilt.

We found designs she liked and she was off and running. It was worth the trouble, don't you think?

Here's a close-up of what she put in the center of the quilt -- I darkened the photo hoping the stitching would show up better. It's all kinds of CW motifs grouped together: Confederate and Union flags, a canon, a soldier's cap, a drum, a pistol. See 'em? Maybe it's clearer if you double-click to enlarge the picture.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Another day, another quilt ...

While Rose and Dave M were here to quilt a gift for someone in their family (no photo because my camera went missing that day), I managed to finish up a few things.

On the right is the blue Hunter Star that's been waiting, and waiting ... and waiting some more. Now the piecing is finished and it's ready to go on the machine for quilting. On the left is the '30s Dresden Plate I picked up for a few bucks -- got that quilted, but not without several issues presenting themselves.

First of all, not one block is the same size as another. They vary by as much as an inch! That made it fun to try to decide how I'd quilt it. I didn't really want to do an overall pattern, but looking back, that might have been a good idea, given the screwy way this one was constructed. The other issue was that the bottom edge of the quilt was really messed up. One side is a good three inches shorter than the other. A little fudging was required to finish it up. Look at that bottom edge in this photo:

It sort of looked like maybe there was more to this quilt top at one point, and that someone may have cut part of it away to use for another purpose. Oh well, it is quilted. The whole time I worked on it, I just kept thinking that whoever pieced it many years ago might be glad to know it was rescued from oblivion. It'll serve to cover a grandchild while they curl up on the couch, or sit on the porch to watch fireworks. The Fourth of July can be really chilly up here in the hills.

Dave was back to do another quilt today, but I accomplished precious little besides paperwork. Blykk. Lo, and behold! The camera was discovered hiding in a tote bag right after he left with his day's work.

Friday, August 17, 2012

It's been a busy week ...

Pickled peppers, blueberries will become pies when the weather turns cold, strawberry jam is always right, and then there are the tomatoes ...

I picked a few more tomatoes this morning:

And this doesn't include the paste-type or the boatload of Sungold. Now what? It's a hard choice ... do I spend the day canning or quilting?

A compromise: some of each.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

I'm throwing a beer party ...

... and you're not invited. Now, don't be insulted. The party is for slugs only. I've read many times that slugs can be trapped in a saucer of beer. I have never seen so many slugs as I have this year in the garden. Ghack! They're everywhere! I find them very repulsive, and would like it very much if they'd just go away. But they won't. So I thought I'd try the beer trick. So far, it's a bust. The only slugs in that beer are the ones I've tossed in. And even those manage to slither back out alive. Now what???

I planted a lot of eggplant this year. GS2 was paid to pick potato bugs off the plants for me during a recent visit. He finds potato bugs as appealing as I find slugs. He wore surgical gloves to pluck 'em, but did a thorough job and the plants are thriving. Being the studious sort that he is, he had to come in the house and look them up in a book about insect management and then on the computer just to be sure we were correctly identifying them. The other night I harvested the first few fruits to make eggplant parm. The first piece I bit into was as yummy as I expected. The next piece? Blech ... it was so bitter it was downright nasty! So I looked it up and found I should salt them to draw the bitter liquid out. Anybody ever tried that? Does it work?

Here's a little cutie I finished up for Jane D - it's going to get a lime green ruffle and then the purple will be the binding. I like it so much I want to make one just like it.

My oldest grandson went home a few weeks ago, having spent about a month here. He was taking care of the lawns while he was here. Now that we've had some (LOTS!) of rain and the grass is growing again, I've had to enlist another lawn mowing service:

You know what they say ... "Many hands make light work!" (or in this case, many hooves ...