• Creatures,  Ramblings

    I’ve Got the Sky, the World Is My Home

    It’s been a while. I’ve been trying to be better about posting more regularly but there are times when I just don’t have anything to share. I’m certainly fortunate to live such a peaceful life but it doesn’t make for very good blogging. “Today was another beautiful, endlessly sunny day. I watched the mule deer chew their way through a neighboring pasture and listened to the magpies squawk as they took turns stealing Pickwick’s food.” Repeat daily. Today I saw something else. The first time we pulled into the driveway, to decide whether or not we wanted to rent this place or buy a camper and make that our home for a year or two, the “yard” was nothing but grasshoppers and weeds. The ground shimmered, like heat off asphalt, with the movement of thousands of insects. It was unnerving. We were given a week or two (I can’t remember which) of free rent because it was so overgrown and the work it would take to fix it was going to be extensive. Well, fix it we have. We’ve maintained the grass from the very moment it started sprouting again. Now, where long tangles of weeds once stood, green has begun to spread.…

  • Food,  Ramblings

    I Spread It on Bread, on Crackers, and Toast

    Marmite. A product so known for having a love it or hate it flavor, the company has it written on their website. I’ve never been more nervous to try something. I once had dinner at a tiny Chinese restaurant, let’s assume it was called The China Wall, since most of them are, in a strip mall between Lancaster and Mountville, Pennsylvania. It’s not there anymore, I checked. They had a little buffet where I had my first encounter with egg drop soup. I wasn’t quite as adventurous with food back then but eggs and broth didn’t seem like a gigantic leap out of my comfort zone. That egg drop soup is the only food I have ever tried that I could not convince my throat to swallow. I actually had to go to the bathroom to spit it out. Somehow I managed to consume a vomit flavored Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Bean, which was disturbingly realistic, but my body would not allow me to injest the soup. After that experience, I was understandably hesitant to try egg drop soup again. However, I’ve learned, because my family is chockablock with terrible cooks who are extremely fond of canned foods (asparagus, peas, potatoes, etc.), that…

  • Ramblings

    And I’ll Find Strength in Pain

    This weekend we started repairing the pasture fence. Some of the poles were bent over so far that half the barbed wire was touching the ground. How does that happen? Brian was in charge of disentangling the dangerous barbs from the railroad tie corner posts. Whoever put the wire up was extremely thorough. They twisted and wrapped it in every direction, tying it a dozen times around each massive chunk of wood. I was in charge of removing the wire from the poles and then removing the poles from the ground. Those that the stampeding elephants plowed through were easy enough to remove, popping out of the ground without effort. The rest… Not so much. This is the first time in my life the palms of my hands have been bruised. Title From: The Cave by Mumford & Sons

  • Creatures,  Ramblings

    Stand up When You Hear Your Name

    Right now our new friend seems to respond to tongue clicking, the rattling of the food bag, and “Hey, good boy!” I couldn’t very well refer to him as SHUSH-SHUSH-SHUSH here, and I didn’t want him to get accustomed to Good Boy as his name either since there are quite a few wild cats around, and if another happens to start enjoying my company I’ll probably say “Hey, good boy” to him as well. We can’t have everyone thinking their name is Good Boy. This isn’t the Foreman house; everyone here gets their own moniker. So, after nearly three weeks of going back and forth with names, we finally settled on Pickwick. Hopefully he’ll acknowledge it in time. If not, I still have SHUSH-SHUSH-SHUSH to fall back on. What made you think of Pickwick, you didn’t ask? Well, let me tell you… I came across the name while doing research on my genealogy. I resumed working on my family line a few months ago, after pausing for our year without internet in Connecticut. I’m trying to make as many connections as I can on my own. It’s very easy to link the wrong people when 96% of your ancestors are named Mary, so I don’t want to depend…