The Delight in a Cup of TEA!

I used to drink 3 or 4 cups of strong black coffee over day. Then my work environment started getting rough and anxiety loomed. That much caffeine became a hazard. Thus, I went tea-crazy!

You can see a bit of the painting I did to hang over this shelf (there’s another shelf below with a teapot and stufff…). Below is the whole thing.

The lighting was not optimum, the green is actually uniformly applied.

And I’m not selfish with my tea, oh no! I have a few cups on hand to share with…should an army drop by!

A section of the shelf…

My Apple Odyssey

Green Apple Bonanza!

I planted my apple trees a few years ago and became accustomed to them just being trees. Lo and behold! Two of the four dwarf trees were loaded with apples this year! I kept waiting for the apples to start turning red, but when they got bright yellow, they began falling off the limbs. Duh, yellow apples, not red ones!

Naturally I had not adequately planned what to do with them yet. Weren’t apples supposed to get ripe in the fall? Well, I use apples in muffins, pandowdy, crumbles and such so I peeled, cored and sliced about 40 of them and mixed them in a great big pot with a generous slop of cinnamon and nutmeg, a little milk and flour, and simmered them until they got to about 40% of their original volume. Ready for anything!

Freezer Bagged!
Seasons, Simmered and Stored!
Worry Not, I Have More Cinnamon!

Now they’re in the freezer, awaiting the next cobbler…pandowdy…pie..

What Happened to Autumn?

From this:

Stemmery QC 024

To this:

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This is surely the shortest fall I’ve ever had…except for the time I stumbled while going down the cabin stairs and fell back on my rear!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and stay safe on the icy roads!

Ice CreamTo what do my wondering eyes appear? 3/4 of a carton of leftover potluck rocky road? Oh my, whatever shall I do with it? As mentioned last week – hide the bathroom scales for a month few months!

Schrödinger’s Cabin: A Reason to Panic?

This week a mean streak of violent storms pounded us in Western Kentucky. Storms happen, the Cabin is built halfway up a ridge so shouldn’t flood, up here in town I didn’t hear any sirens. I even worked late to get stuff done and didn’t leave the factory until after 7 pm.

I stay up in town during the week to be close to work, but could still barely get home. The buckets of rain falling were hippo-sized! 20 mph all the way. That put me in a state of agitation by the time I got to the house.

I turned on the radio to get the alerts. Severe thunderstorms, yeah, yeah. I opened a can of beans for supper. Then I heard this:

Screenshots 004

I have NEVER EVER heard Flint Springs called out in an alert of any kind! It is not a town, it has no traffic light or post office, it is a gravel road! Every hamlet called out in the warning at least had a store or something, and they all surround the cabin, my precious, beloved home place as if they were the red circles around the big red cabin-shaped bullseye!

My heart thumped like mad. I turned the radio up to hear a repeat, maybe I was mistaken. The rock and roll station abruptly came back blaring Jimi Hendrix ominously whispering, “…and the wind cried MARY…”

Rural areas don’t have eager reporters nearby. I don’t have any close neighbors. Nobody would know. Schrödinger’s Cabin!

I panicked and emailed my boss that first thing in the morning I absolutely had to go to the cabin over an hour away and ease my mind OR face the carnage. I even told him about Jimi. I wavered…I could go now…no stupid, the weather was still too way too rough and the way there was probably flooding. Have faith. Have common sense – what could I do there at midnight? I forced myself to wait.

At dawn (so I could see the debris on the road) I headed south. I measured my breathing carefully until I got to the gravel and had to get out  to move big limbs off the road. A very tall tree had fallen across the road but was held up enough by the trees on the other side for me to get through. I craned my neck to get the first glimpse of the cabin as I powered up the steep driveway.Cabin June 2015 003

Pristine, even the flags. Halleluiah!

 

 

 

Love A Tree Day!

Tree HuggerThe very first time I travelled from faraway San Diego to the remote reaches of a Western Kentucky forest, I fell swoopy-doopy in love. The Realtor I’d visited was in Elizabethtown. I wanted to build a cabin in the woods. Nada, nothing available, all the woods being sectioned up and bulldozed for subdivisions, sadness. The hour I was to leave the motel for the airport, she called and breathlessly rushed to say she’d just had a miracle pop up on her screen.

I sped over and met her at the door. She told me a 100 acre forested lot just came up on the wire, not even formally listed yet. And they only wanted $35,000 for it! She got a somber look and added that it was almost a hundred miles west.

We went and we poked around a little in the pouring rain. Gee, I wasn’t sure…We went back to the Realtor’s house and she let me stay there.

I called home and said I’d be away for one additional day, then remembered to change the flight due to family emergency. Sort of… The next morning I drove back out and everything seemed different, me and the trees in cosmic communion. The wonderfully sunny day was rather far along before I’d stopped wandering the deer paths, swooning in awe of the cacophony of birdsong and ogling the brilliant wildflowers. Before I got back in the car, felt the strangest, I couldn’t believe I was doing it compulsion. I hugged a big ‘ol tree. Tight.

I got back to the Realtor’s and picked up my plunder so I could return to the airport in Louisville. I had to talk a 35 grand commitment over with Bob, we had to look over the finances, we had to see if this could integrate into our plans, I had to convince him with a thousand pictures. I drove away. About 100 feet.

I ran back crying and signed the papers.

I have NEVER regretted it.

It’s Love A Tree Day, and as ABBA sang, “I do, I do, Id, I do, I do!”

Holy cow, just writing this has me in tears.

 

Bear With Me?

This notice showed up in my email:

You are subscribed to Fish and Wildlife for Kentucky.gov. This information has recently been updated, and is now available.

Keep the Wild in Wildlife

04/27/2018 09:53 AM EDT

Warmer temperatures mean bear activity is on the rise in Kentucky. Complaints about bears raiding garbage are on the rise as well.

Critters 009
Do you think he sees a bear?

 

Leafy vs not
Is that a bear on the far right side?

There are no bears here that I know of, but the bulldozers scraping every living thing off the ground for quick cash , leaving it thereafter for weeds, are getting nearer every day. That’s why I have so many coyotes and bobcats and no more chipmunks or rabbits…or outside cats. Maybe a bear or two would scare the big yellow monsters away, or maybe I could make endangered or sensitive habitat claims?  100 acres isn’t really that large a tract for sizeable predators, but it might be worth a shot. Bad metaphor? No bag-bang.

I wouldn’t mind having Smoky Bear ( officially NOT Smoky the Bear) and family around to emphasize we need to keep some real WOODLANDS alive. Go Cubs!Bear sad