Friday, March 27, 2020

February trip first days

Each winter we take a trip to visit our daughter's family in Texas.  It is a 2 day drive from our home in North Dakota.

We had a prior appointment for Feb 8th, so didn't get started until after 2 in the afternoon.  We like to take a highway that is not in interstate, you see so much more scenery and US HWY 81 is the original route from Canada to Texas from before the interstate system was put in.  Parts of it are 2 lane and a good share of it is 4 lane.

The first day we made it into Kansas before stopping for the night. The next day we got on the road early and I took the first picture of this years trip in Oklahoma. To me the color of the dirt is just weird.


Another feature of Oklahome that we enjoy traveling through are the Arbuckle mountains.







Every time I see the name on the map or a sign, it gives me a bit of a tickle.  I read a lot of westerns, and one of the brand names for coffee back in the very old days was Arbuckle.  And another interesting thing about this area is Arbuckle Mountain Fried Pies.  They are very good.


This year, the weather was really good, no fog, no rain, and the farmguy was willing to take the time to do some sight seeing. We stopped at one of the overlook pullouts and I took a few pictures, here is one.


As we got closer to our daughter's house, we have to go through Fort Worth.  The road systems truely look like piles of spaghetti


there were some very interesting striated clouds



This year we took a fun present for our grandchildren, snow. 
I put our Yeti cooler out in the garage for several days to be sure it is chilled, then on the morning of the trip, I fill it with snow. close and latch the lid and it does pretty well for the 2 days og the trip. The kids had a great time with the snow and then they kept part of it for the next day for our granddaughter's 4th birthday party.


grampa throwing snowballs 

Along with the snowball fight, we enjoyed the fire pot.

Well, this is long enough for tonight.

There is more to come, because farmguy decided we were not going to go straight back home after our visit, we are going to do more sightseeing.
So stay tuned for some more interesting pictures.









Wednesday, January 29, 2020

catching up and ending 2019

Well, I still am not posting on a regular basis, so once again this is a catch up post.

I have some photos to share

I was out checking the chickens one of the last days of November and I managed to catch this sunset.



and then a few days after that, this is what we ended up with,





Above is the aftermath of the snow storm, belowis what was going on during it.  most of our windows were coated with the snow


We have had several more storms since, but I haven't taken pictures in all of them. 

Last October before the first hard frost, I was invited to pick apples from one of Farmguy's cousins.  They are yummy apples, and I canned several varieties of apple butter, and made apple sauce, and made some fried apples, and baked several types of desserts.  One of the ones we really like is Apkple Bread Pudding


it is an old recipe from my grandmother and like many recipes from nearly 100 yrs ago, it is not exact, 

3-4 slices of bread                                    - I used 8 cups of dried bread cubes
moisten with about 1 cup milk                 - I used about 3 C milk
1 - 2 C cut up apples                                 - I used a good 6 C of cut up apples
1/2 - 3/4 C sugar depending on tartness    - I used about 1 1/2C sugar & some cinnamon & nutmeg
Dot top with butter                                    - I used about 8 tbls of butter
Bake at 350 till apples are done.  Serve warm with heavy cream (G & G milked cows) or ice cream

I did some bread baking before Christmas, both Sourdough and Julekage. 
This is about half of what i made. Some for us, some for neighbors, some for friends


 I did do some Tatting before Christmas, it is about 2" tall


This post is getting long enough and late enough in the evening.  I will end 2019 here and try to get the rest caught up in the next day or so. 

Have a really great 2020





Tuesday, November 19, 2019

questions need answers and a rant

I have several things I need some information on and thought I would ask those of you reading this for any answers you might have.

Question #1
 I ran into a spice mix a week or so ago in an article I read, it sounded interesting and I thought I would give it a try. It is  a blend of Cardamom, Cinnamon, Cloves, Coriander, Cumin and black pepper, called Garam Masala
It is very good on sauted carrots, and I added it to muffins tonight.








My question....  what other ways can this be used?  if you use it, how?

Question #2
One of the quick/easy desserts for our family is a recipe called 
Norwegian Apple Pie

I got this recipe from my mother-in-law between 40 - 50 yrs ago. (wow, writing that seems like such a long time, yet living is doesn't seem that long).   Anyway, I think she got it from 1 of 2 publications that she read either Capper's Weekly or Prevention
The recipe I have gives only the amounts of ingredients, there is no method and I was wondering if anyone else makes this. 





As you can see this has been well used. 



It makes a really nice crusty top and a custardy inside with no pastry crust.  

If anyone recognizes this recipe I would appreciate any info you have for me. 


Question #3
This one is a computer question
Several days ago I downloaded a rather large file labeled Lace_for_manual_sock_machines.
I don't recall the MB but it was large.  I have a 2019 HP Chromebook X2. for the next couple of days, I was constantly getting a notification that it was syncing the file. 
It got to the point that I deleted the file hopeing it would stop trying to sync.
It still wanted to sync and was constantly giving me that notification 

I tried shutting down and leaving it over night and all the next day before powering up again and I am still getting this notification.  
when files are deleted on this machine they are deleted permanently so it isn't trying to sync the file in the recycle bin. 
If anyone has any help to get it to stop trying to sync I would appreciate it. 

Questions are done.

on one of my previous posts I took a photo at dusk of the wind break canvas that I had put up on my chicken pen.  I thought I would take a couple better photos and show you what I was talking about. 


The chickens have been enjoying being outside even in the chilly weather as long as they are out of the wind.  Their nice fluffy down coats hold body heat well, as long as the wind isn't blowing up their fluffybuts


Now a rant
The government helps farmers cover the costs of complying with their regulations.  When you are able to sign up some land for the program Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), they require you to seed the land with a perrenial cover crop - grasses or others.  Once you turn in your paperwork, they will repay some of  your expenses to plant the seed.  In other years we have gotten our reimbusements within a month, 2 at the most. 

This year we were able to sign up some land along the sides of a creek to help stop erosion.  We were able to get the parcel planted to the required seed mix this past spring.  And had the paperwork returned for the reimbursement by June of this year.  We waited several weeks, then started calling every month or so to see how their paperwork to release the money was getting done.  We were told every time that the paperwork was backlogged, or that the person working on it was behind, or the person was new......  well, this morning we were told that the system has been shut down in Washington and has been for over 2 weeks and they don't know when it will be opened.  

Due to the China trade tarrif wars, grain markets have been down, and because of the crazy cool, wet weather, harvest has not yet been finished.  

We have bills to pay, with less income available, and the reimbusement payment would help. 

I contacted both state senators and our representative by email, but have not yet received a reply.
Will have to wait some more I guess.


Sunday, November 10, 2019

another post

I have been working on a project for our neighbor.  He has asked for a neck gaiter in blaze orange.  I have the yarn, but designing the gaiter on my Circular Sock Machine has been interesting.

 This is my machine


This picture was taken about 5 yrs ago, I no longer use the digital row counter.  

This past friday was bread baking day, I make nearly all my bread with Sourdough starter.  It was chilly in the house, so while I started just after breakfast, I didn't take it out of the oven till after 11.  

Farmguy likes his bread in easy to slice loaves, so my sourdough is baked in pans, not in rounds.

The house was/is chilly due to the fact we have had so much rain this year, our wood supply is at best dsamp and at worst, soaked.  So we are not getting as much heat out of the wood pile this year.


Farmguy is still eating fresh tomatoes, they are ripening nicely after I picked them green.  There are about 8 left.


I managed to actually get some painting done this fall. I painted most of the wood on the chicken house which hadn't been painting for 40-50 yrs.  Boy did it soak up paint.  I used a primer/paint combo.  

I forgot to take my phone out earlier in the day yesterday, so took these at dusk when I went out.  It may not be noticable but I have lined the outside pen wire walls with plastic canvas recycled from bulk seed bags  The bags are about 4' cubed.  I remove the tops and bottoms which aren't flat, and have a strip of plastic that is 4' tall and about 16' long.  The chickens appreciate the wind breaks, they are not happy when their feathers are blowing in the wind.  I don't cover the top, there is no support for a heavy load of snow on top of a tarp as it is just bird netting.  the walls are double chicken wire and yard fencing. 
I also got the inside of the chicken house whitewashed. 

I took this at dusk after they had gone to roost for the night.  I use the flash on my phone which gave them shiny eyes.   I prefer whitewash inside over paint.  The bugs and spiders do not like the lime in the whitewash, I can add canning salt when I mix it up and that helps to reflect light, so it is brighter without using a large lumen light bulb.  And the lime, water, and salt will not harm the birds if they happen to peck at it and eat a bit. 

I managed to get the area under the roosts shoveled out friday when it was in the upper 30's and lay new straw, as it started snowing today.  It was to cold and windy to let the chickens out so they had to be kept in all day.  

on a farming note, we have been able to get the soybeans all combined.  nearly 2 months late.  And have gotten about half the corn combined.  We have dealt with water in the fields, normally the guys will combine all day and into the night to get done, but there was so much water in places, they had to only combine during the day so they could see the ponds.  Running water into the combine is not good.  Things get wet and when corners and places are full of chaff and dust, getting things wet and muddy gums up the works. 

well, enough for tonight. 




Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Misc catchup post



This has been an interesting summer.  We had a cool and wet spring and summer, which brought a large and amazingly varied crop of mushrooms.  This is just 1 and it was very large.







We always get together for a family camping and picnic over the 4th of July, along the shore of a lake.  This is me and a couple of our grandchildren. 




Then in early October, the 11th to be exact we had a blizzard, and received 4" of snow.  Not as much as other parts of the state, some very "lucky" farmers received about 28" of heavy wet snow. 
below are 2 of the pictures I took

                           



This is a small Black Walnut

All the rain we recieved this year and the snow caused the fields to be very wet and has made harvest very difficult. 

Also in October we went to 2 concerts, first we have gone to in all the 46  yrs we haev been married.  At the end of September, Farmguy answered a trivia question on the radio and he won tickets to a Mickey Gilley/Johny Lee concert.  It was fun.  A week later he was reading the paper and saw that Miranda Lambert and her Roadside Bars & Pink Guitars tour was stopping in Fargo ND.  We were able to get tickets and the date was just a few days after our  Anniversary.  We had a good time at that concert too. 

On November 2 one of my daughters got martried. Below is a picture of our children. 
Left to right: Elizabeth #4 Doctor of Chemistry,
Mary #1 Graphic Artist and para professional for their local school, 
Naomi #6 runs the city and county housing dept, 
Rebecca #5 works in the compliance dept for a multi state bank, 
Joseph #7 works for a national restaurant chain,
Sarah #3 PharmTech in a hosp,
Anna #2 Stockbroker/Financial Advisor.


I am so proud of my kids, they are all silly, succesful, responsible adults who have persevered through good and bad times. They are amazing people and I am glad I know them and am very proud to be there mom. I do not claim any responsibility for how they turned out.  All I did was give them a framework, they did the growing and maturing themselves with God's help. 



Sunday, April 21, 2019

Let's Try This Again

It has been quite some time since I posted anything.
I have allowed many things to get in the way of posting. 

So I have decided that I need to start again. 
I will be posting more than just fiber art. 
There will still be the occasional Tatting project or maybe crochet or maybe socks. 
But there will also be some pictures.  I have gotten a new camera, and I am liking it very much.  So you may see just those on occasion. 

Back in January I was just learning this camera, and it is still an on going process, but I took these one evening while out shutting up the chickens,  that was before the 2 months of sub zero weather. 



Another subject you might see pictures of would be chickens.  I have a flock of 26, 24 hens and 2 roosters. The flock is of mixed breeds and these are the colors of eggs that I get. 


Just a couple more photos 

Sunrise over the grain bins

February 2019 snowstorm

a March 2019 snowstorm aftermath

and one morning there was fog
and when it cleared, we had this really neat frosting on the trees and other outside structures

and 1 more from March,  
The same storm that devastated the state of Nebraska also hit us here in North Dakota. 


We lost part of the roof of the pole barn where we house our calves. That should be roof, not open sky and there shouldn't be all that snow on the floor.  There was a calf that got trapped under the rafters and steel, but he wasn't hurt.  

Well, this post is long enough.  
I will try to do better about posting as we go forward into 2019

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

More Socks

I haven't seemed to be able to get much craft work done lately.  Gardening, chores, housework, farming and bookkeeping seem to be keeping me busy.

Our congregation does a giving tree each year, this year there were several names that were still on the table after the 2nd sunday.  I couldn't afford to fill all those requests but I could help out with some socks.  So I started this past Thursday eve and Monday morning I finished the last kitchner stitches on the last pr.


I also have a friend that is battling breast cancer,  surgery, chemo and now radiation.  I have cranked a pr of socks for her too.


I have more yarn to make socks so need to get cranking.