Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Red Tea Cozy Ready For A TeaPot

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The red tea cozy is finished and may see a trial use on Kristine's teapot tonight.

I'll be very happy if the cozy keeps the tea hot for a few hours like the other cozy I made.


Since this cozy fits over the teapot the down side is that the handle on the teapot heats up to an uncomfortable temperature. Ouch!

So, I made a special little chicken to use as a pot holder (handle holder) when pouring the tea.

I still have some stitching to do on the chicken. The white pin heads are sticking out around the bottom.

I enlarged the pattern I had for making pot lid holders. The little chickens are handy for picking up hot pot lids and I like to see them sitting on the pots.

The chicken mug rug makes up a nice trio. I wonder what else I could add to the mix. An apron?

5 eggs eggs this morning.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Red Tea Cozy

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Tea cozy project in the making. I worked on this yesterday and today and still have some more plans. This cozy will fit most any tea pot except for one of the tall models.

Kristine said she would get me a tea pot in a month or two. So, I'm making a cozy that will fit a tea pot with a long spout and large handle.

I'm sewing this by hand because it has too many layers and is way too thick to fit in a sewing machine.

There are four layers of batting, four layers of fabric, ruffles, and two thermal layers. It is almost too thick for me to sew by hand. The thermal layer is cut from a synthetic carry bag. Sometimes I just use a plastic grocery store bag

I know there are special battings that you can buy for use in hot pads, etc., but I can't get any of that so this is my make do choice.

I didn't take step by step photos to post. I'm going to make another cosy and plan to take some photos to post of that project. I can't make the next cozy until Kristine gets the tea pot because I want to make the cozy to fit the teapot... with a space for the handle to be uncovered.

I'm enjoying sewing while watching shows on YouTube.


Kristine made it home today,
but not up the driveway.

The car got stuck in some
mud and snow.

Things should dry up this week.
There is blue sky
and lots of sun forecast for next week.

Winter weather and then
right to summer?

Some of the ski resorts say they think they have enough snow to stay open until June... maybe July 4th even. Who knows... we may even see more snow. We have had snow in April, May and June. Tricky weather up here.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Snowy Weather Makes Me Hungry

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This is my fast way of making a phony poached egg. I put just enough butter in the skillet to keep the eggs from sticking, then drop them in the heated skillet, let the whites set, and then I put in a small amount of hot water from the kettle and put the lid on until the steam cooks the top of the eggs.

The specks are pepper and basil and the eggs taste like they were poached. It's a bit of a cheat, but it is fast.


I don't know what it is about being stuck in the house on snowy days, but I want to cook and eat.

So, I gave in and since I had buttermilk to use up I made buttermilk pancakes. Very good.




Then I got the pot roast ready and cooking on the wood stove. This is very easy cooking and food really does taste better cooked on the wood stove than on gas. Go figure.

Someone should get a grant and do a study.



I have been reading news or trying to find reliable news about Japan's earthquake.

I have found several blogs written by
people who live in Japan
besides my long time favorite...
Tanya's Blog ~ Taniwa.

She was in a cave when the
earthquake hit... imagine.

And I'm going to put a link to another blog Life In Japan because he has written about his experiences everyday since the earthquake and I found it very interesting to read Tanya's and this blog and learn first hand how the people in Japan are dealing with the aftermath of the earthquake through their eyes instead of the sensationalized media accounts.

I guess it is time to go stoke up the fire if I want any dinner tonight.

Snowing?

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I'll be posting off and on during the day.
When there is power.

It is 6 in the morning and it's snowing again.
Hard to believe...
we are supposed to get rain.


I filled up the wood stove,
took Morgan potty,
now I'm going to make some hot cocoa
and go back to bed.
~~~
Can't sleep
7:20 am
still snowing
The Weather Channel
says we have a polar jet moving through.
I believe it.
Now I'm off to feed the chickens
and walk Morgan.

~~~
Morgan is fed and walked.
The chickens ate treats and scratch.
4 eggs!
It has warmed up to 31.
Rain?

Friday, March 25, 2011

Early Snowy Morning

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The power is back on... so I'll post some photos. Or maybe not... the photos won't load.
I'll try later.

OK... it's later...

This is what is left of the meat loaf I cooked
on the wood stove.
Yikes... it's still snowing!
Christmas Tree?
Yep... it is still up.
I did take the wreaths and stockings down.
Morgan... I told you to stay in the shed.
It's snowing!
But there is something trying to get in here...
can't I go chase it?
Kristine didn't make it home again last night.
The driveway is snowed in again.
I lifted up the old horse waterer that I use
to cover the faucet in the winter
and filled up a chicken's water bowl.
There were two eggs this morning and I broke one because I set a feeder scoop down on it... there is a lot to be said for routine... because I hadn't put the eggs in the egg basket and left them out where they weren't safe. What a mess. Oh, well, I had a lot of snow to use to clean with.

The chickens got chopped up lettuce, cabbage and apple this morning. Some of the hens like to stay in the coop roosting and will only come out for treats. Either they eat their chicken feed earlier or they like to stay on the roost and keep their feet warm or?

Rain and some snow forecast.
Hopefully, more rain than snow.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Slushy, Mushy, Snow

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The hens enjoyed lettuce for a treat this morning. What they really want and all they seem to like is scratch mixed with seed.

They will break down and eat lay pellets if there is nothing else left.


I'm sure the scratch is not that good for egg production but the chickens may need it to combat the cold?


Anyway, I give them a choice of a feeder full of each feed. We will all be glad when Spring shows up to stay.



Morgan stayed in the shed today when I took the feed to the coop. She 
stayed there because I told her to stay.





The weather is a milkshake of slushy mushy snow with alternating layers of wind, rain, sleet, ice and more snow.











Morgan learned this trick
from the male doberman pinscher
we had when she was a puppy.

She is very selective
and only decorates a tree
once in a while.


The chickens left 5 eggs for me this morning. Thanks for the eggs, girls.

I do feel sorry for them out in the coop, but when I go in there to collect eggs it is surprisingly warm compared to the outside. Not really warm, but not freezing either. Chickens are amazing. The cold doesn't seem to bother them nearly as much as the summer heat.

For dinner last night I made a meat loaf in a dutch oven on the wood stove. Turned out great, and I will have to take a photo tonight when I heat up the left overs. I hate it when I miss photo opportunities.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tracks In The Snow

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The power came back on! Well, it goes on and off and I want to post these photos quickly... so not much text.

I took these photos this morning when I took Morgan out for a walk.

My boot tracks and Morgan's dainty footprints.








Rabbit tracks?














The critter that left these tracks

was small enough to make it through the fence.








This looks like

it could have been a squirrel?




Mystery prints?

No tail drag marks.











Wow!














Well, this limb didn't exactly make tracks...

more like one deep track.

Glad I wasn't walking down the path during the wind storm we had the other night.

There is more rain (a week+) and snow forecast. All this rain and snow in March is a bit surprising. There was even a tornado in the valley yesterday. 


Saturday, March 19, 2011

Gate and Driveway Snowed In

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I want to post these photos before the power goes off again.

I took all these snow photos this morning at 8am.












Too much snow to drive out.

And I forgot to open the gate last night.






Another tree down

and it has smashed the fence

up a bit.

I was up last night

late making myself a cup of hot cocoa

after filling up the wood stove.



Maybe I can post some more later today.

Now I'm off to make buttermilk pancakes.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Low Snow

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The snow level is down to around 1500 feet (we are at 3000) and it started snowing fast with large snowflakes so the snow has piled up rather quickly.

The top photo shows the snow after it had been snowing for only a short time.

(Update: It is 12:40 am and there's 12 inches of snow.)
(Kristine didn't make it home.)








After several hours we have a good
8 to 10 inches.

It is still snowing, but will it stop and start to rain?

Maybe, or it could keep snowing...
Questions, questions.








Morgan is drying out.

After I took her for a walk I fixed it so she could stay in the shed while I was carrying feed for the chickens.

Lot of good that did. When I came back she was laying in the snow. Silly girl.



The chickens are fine. Not exactly happy chickens, but they are ok.

Tom is still putting the new toilet together.

The power went off twice, so I'm trying to get this posted before it goes off again. I made stew for dinner. Great stuff on a cold day. Love the wood stove!


5 eggs today
Finding eggs was a surprise.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

One Of Those Days Where Things Go South

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Go South? Wonder where that saying comes from? But, it works for me as it means that things just haven't been working out right today.

Seems like whatever I try to do just hasn't worked out the way I planned. I should have gone back to bed like I did yesterday.

But I stayed up and moved the furniture which meant the next thing I needed to do was vacuum the floor.

Ok. I can do that. Except the vacuum  choked up, gasp... no sucking of air was happening. To make a long story short... I didn't take a picture of the disgusting stuff I finally got out of the tube. I vacuumed, I washed down the floor, and I dried the floor. The floor was clean.  OK. Good so far.

Next, I laid out the quilt backing and even remembered to place it down with the wrong side up.

  Note to self: never make another quilt back out of squares again. It doesn't lay smoothly and it is going to be a terror to quilt with all those seams. Remember this.

Batting is next... I finally, with a lot of crawling around, got the batting smoothed out over the backing. I was tired of floor work so decided to take a rest and go back and have some fun vacuuming.

When I was vacuuming the bathroom I thought, "Gee, the vinyl looks shiny." Yeah, it was shiny alright... water!

Surprise! So, Tom took the toilet out and then left to go buy a new one. Seems the one we had finally flushed its last flush. Well, at least I don't have to put in the new toilet. I stopped vacuuming. I didn't know what I might find next... and went back to the quilt.

I smoothed out the batting again and laid down the quilt top making sure to have backing fabric evenly spaced around the edges. So far, so good.

Before I started sewing basting stitches through all three layers to hold it together so I could start hand quilting, I thought I should wait and ask Kristine if she was happy with the size of the quilt and the thickness of the batting.

(I tried to buy safety pins to use to pin the layers together, but the quilt store didn't have any... phooey!)

Kristine is happy with the size of the quilt, but the batting is too thin. I thought it was too thin also. Maybe it would do for baby quilts?

The last thing I didn't do worked out.  I spent three days basting the last quilt together. I really wouldn't have wanted to spend time ripping out basting stitches.

So, I took the quilt and batting apart, folded them up, put them away and went back to my computer for some down time. Sigh... I love my computer!

3 eggs today
Rain is forecast for the next 10 days... even snow. Ok, I guess rain is better than a lot of snow?

Happy St. Patrick's Day

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This puts a smile on my face... enjoy!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Breakfast?

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On these cold dreary rainy days I like hot oatmeal with raisins and a hot drink for breakfast to help chase away the wintery blues.

Didn't work this morning though because, after seeing Kristine off to work, checking on the chickens and taking Morgan for a walk, I ate my cereal and went back to bed.

Well, it is dark all day and I guess I'm tired and getting rid of this cold and my sleep switch is confused by not having any sun around. That's my story.

I like my oatmeal with milk (cream if I can get it) and sprinkled with brown sugar. If there is no brown sugar to be found I like maple syrup or honey.

I love this oatmeal even though it takes ten minutes to cook. It is stone ground and has a great texture and flavor. I'm getting hungry looking at the photo.

My favorite hot drink lately is ginger tea. I peel fresh ginger root, chop it up and freeze it so it is always ready when I want to add a few pieces to my cup.  The ginger tea is very simple to make.

Here is what I do:

  1. Add about an inch worth of ginger root to the cup.
  2. Add juice of one lemon (or how much you want.)
  3. Add boiling water.
  4. Add honey to taste. 

I guess it is what I would have called hot lemonade with ginger before I read about ginger tea.

I like the peppery taste of ginger and it really does warm me up.

I have been playing around with crocheting trying to remember how to read the directions and how to make the different stitches.

What I really need to do is move the furniture around in my room so I can make a large enough clear space on the floor to lay out the quilt layers and baste them together. I think a lot about moving the furniture, but I haven't come up with the will power yet to get the job done. Tomorrow?

And always at the back of my mind is the whole disaster going on in Japan. Maybe that's why I went to sleep. It was a good way to get away from thinking about the whole terrible mess.

This article (Reuters) or this article (PerthNow) quotes a Russian Chernobyl nuclear clean up specialist, Iouli Andreeve, who does not inspire confidence when it comes to believing news about radiation leaks in Japan and about possible radiation making it to different parts of the world.  Nothing I can do about it, but I sure wish I could get information that didn't sound like double talk.

If those plants really do melt down then everyone is in the radiation stew pot.

I can understand why the powers that be down play the eventualities because what are people supposed to do, where will they go? ... if people panic there will be a bigger disaster. I'm not going to worry. Can't do anything anyway. I think I'll go hang out with the chickens.

No eggs today. The chickens are confused by the dark days and all the rain too...

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Rain Came And Keeps On Coming

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Rain is forecast everyday up to the 24th (10 day forecast) and then who knows... more rain? I hope there are not too many rain related problems on the mountain because there are already mudslides on the highway. I heard a lot of sirens today.

I took this photo because there is smoke coming out of the chimney. There is something really nice about seeing chimney smoke on a cold rainy day. We don't usually see any smoke because our wood stove burns the smoke up after it gets going nice and hot. The stove smokes when we first light it or add more wood to the fire.

The chickens are not happy with having to stay in their coop and pen even though they are dry they would love to be out tearing through the leaf litter. I really am amazed by all the rain... and maybe snow.

The chickens give me such a look and talking to when I go out to feed them in the morning. It is going to get really soggy around here.


Let us out!

I am drawn to find out more about the earthquake and tsunami. For hours I stay away from the news, but finally give in and check to see what's happening. I guess my own experience with a large earthquake, becoming homeless, and perhaps not ever really getting over the disorienting scary experience has left me prey to having to find out the latest news.

Anyway, I'm posting a link to some before and after photos of the coast
 There is a 2nd page.

I wish I had been blogging in 1989. I could have put together some interesting stuff to post . Wish I could get those images out of my head and digitize them. Maybe someone will come up with a great invention in the future that will enable us to capture our memories and save or print them. I've always thought that if someone can think it up, then there will be someone/s who will be able to figure out how to do it.

 The rain was very heavy last night. We don't often get that loud pounding rain. It will be interesting to see if we actually get more snow toward the end of the week.

3 eggs today 

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Rain, Rain, Rain

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Kristine filled the wheelbarrow and used her muscle power to get it on the porch and parked by the slider near the wood stove.

I decided to bring in a load of firewood in the wagon and park it in the entry way for easy access during the rains the next four days or so. The wood looks like it is holding out fairly well. So, unless we get a lot more snow we should have enough to make it through to some warm weather.

I get my news off the computer and found:
Upstream has a live broadcast for news about what is happening in Japan in English or translated.
Kyodo News has up to date news.

Watching brings back the 1989 quake and living in a field and that disorienting feeling of not knowing and not having a place/home anymore. It took us ten years to get back to where we were before the earthquake. I think it could take a lifetime for the cities to be rebuilt. I try not to check too often. So heartbreaking.

6 eggs today - the hens are fine and dry

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Solid Chicken Mug Rug

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I like the chicken made with red fabric better than having several different patterns and colors.

I was going to take a photo of the pancakes, bacon, etc., before I ate most of them, but ...






I like making breakfast
for dinner sometimes.
An easy, fast and good dinner.

Buttermilk pancakes with
real maple syrup are my favorite.







Morgan has three beds in the house, but she will still curl up on the cold, cold floor to be close to me if there is no bed close to where I am sitting.

Makes me feel guilty.

5 eggs today.


I'm still working on getting rid of my cold/cough thing. The grey cold days do lend themselves to making it easy for daytime naps. The snow has almost all melted. I'm fighting cabin fever and making plans that need Spring weather to carry out. Things always seem so simple and easy in the planning stage.