Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Blah, Blah, Blah

Non-stop go, go, go these days. Part of me enjoys the action, getting out of the house and doing something different; another part of me is ready for staying home and doing nothing-- well, as much nothing as 2, 4, 6 and 8-year olds will let me.

We had to head into Northern Virginia on Saturday for a family get together and it was nice. Always good to see family and it had been too long between visits, really. The kids got their grandma and granddaddy 'fix' and we're all caught up on family end-of-the-summer activities. We also stopped by to see friends for a quick little visit and wished we could have stayed longer, but we had another stop to make before going home. It was great seeing them, too! :o)
Our original plan was to stay overnight and then hit the Renaissance Festival the next day, but it turned out that Andrew had to work that day, so we nixed those plans. I'm a little disappointed we didn't go, but it runs all the way through to the end of October, so there's still another chance we can make it. I already made a costume for Peter to wear, and got the materials to make dresses for the girls, but have yet to sew them up. If we end up not going, they can use them for Halloween at least.
I have a birthday coming up, so I received some gift cards to Walmart. First thing I thought of was getting one of those Bissell green machines so I can finally clean the poor couch. We picked one up today and paid the difference. Since Peter poured the milk all over the couch, it's sort of been shoved aside, the cushions being used on the floor by the kids (milk was poured on the base of the couch, not the cushions). Then the dog vomited on it last night-- ew. Then today, apparently, there was poop on the couch which Peter then stepped in and smeared onto the couch and tracked little poopy footprints all over the living room floor before I caught a whiff of it and grabbed him so I could clean him up. Meanwhile, the girls are sprawled on the chairs seeing all this go down and not one thought to come and tell me about the poo or Peter tracking it everywhere.

So the Bissell came in handy tonight. I fired it up and cleaned the base of the couch, the arm rests and one of the cushions. Man, that water was dirty! It's still damp, so I'll have to wait until it dries to see how much better it looks, but I'm sure it's an improvement from what it was. I'll probably have to go over it a couple of times but it's a start, and I got the poo and vomit all cleaned up anyway.
My tomatoes are trickling down now. I haven't canned any in a week. Every time I go out there, there's hardly enough to fill a quart jar, even after a couple days of no picking. The potatoes seem to be doing alright. I can see a few exposed here and there and the tops are starting to wilt and wither. I'll wait a little longer before I dig a few up and see what I find.
The wild grapes have been picked and juiced. I got 2 quart jars full of juice that needs to be sweetened and thinned with water. Wild grapes are pretty sour, but that doesn't stop Peter from gobbling them up! Each of the girls tried them, made faces and spit them out, but Peter just eats one after the other, asking for more after he finishes the bunch I gave him. I had to play keep-away so he wouldn't eat up all the grapes! There aren't very many wild grapes this year, lack of rain, I suppose, so every bit I could find, I needed.
We are in drought conditions here, and there is a burn ban imposed on county residents. Many of the orchards here had to send away truckloads of apples and peaches to be juiced because they weren't good for much else. When there is no rain, the tree steals the sap from the fruits, so the fruits don't get any bigger and end up getting sunburned. Lots of fruits, but they aren't big and juicy as years with plentiful rain. I suspect the price of a bushel of apples will be much higher this year. Guess I should be happy I have plenty of applesauce left from last year and won't need to buy so many apples this year.
I have unhappy hens. They keep getting sexually assaulted by the 6 roosters every time they step out of the coop, so they have taken to staying in the coop. They are protesting their living and work conditions and have stopped laying eggs for me. 11 hens and if I'm lucky, I get 2 eggs, but usually just one per day. I had every intention of butchering a rooster last week, but then I chickened out and let him go. Lucky feller. I need to kick myself and get it over with. I'm alright with the butchering part, it's the taking of a life part that gets me. I fudged it the last time and the rooster suffered a little bit and I feel so bad for that. I need better killing tools so I don't make that same mistake.
I signed up for Elsie Marley's Kid Clothes Week. That's that little picture at the top in the right-hand corner. It's a fun little thing, commit to sewing at least an hour every day for a week to sew clothes for your kids. She did it last Spring and seeing some of the outfits people made for their kids was really inspiring. I decided to try and participate this year and make at least a dress for each of the girls, or maybe night gowns for their Christmas gifts. I have some nice corduroy that would make a cute jumper for one of the girls. When I made Peter's costume for the Renaissance Festival, I didn't use a pattern and I was pretty pleased with how well it came out, plus, it fits him nicely. Maybe a simple shirt for him, dresses for the girls and jammies for all of them. A bit ambitious, maybe, but no one said I had to stop at the end of the week!
Percy is looking so cute, all curled up into a ball, asleep by my feet. I think I'll follow his lead and curl up in my own bed. No more go, go, go for the week, but there's still things to do around here.


Karen Mayes said...

Well, at least you are just living, going through the same routine... that's good. We mostly like to have a sense of normalcy in our lives.


Ron said...

We've been doing somewhat less go-go lately... a welcome change-of-pace.

I didn't know that about apples, very interesting.

The next time I butcher chickens, I'm going to try a cone (probably old vinegar jug or similar). I haven't been satisfied with past attempts either.


jenny said...

Karen-- yes, that's true, we are just living our lives. Can't be all glittery and sparkles every day! :o)

Ron-- That was new information for me too, about apples. I read it in the local paper we get.

I was thinking the same thing, using an old jug for the cone method. It seems like it would be easier when solo butchering and would free up your hands. Using two nails in a stump just isn't working for me.