Tag Archives: local

Friday, June 21, 2013

3 Jul

Tuesday morning the dog and I took our usual morning walk.  A wet dragonfly with a gold racing stripe down its back condescended to be picked up from its wet grassy site and carried perched on my fingers for a ways until the sun dried it off and it flew away.  A few enterprising young spiders had built lovely intricate webs across the pathway that we have made up through the meadow, it is a great runway for catching insects, too, so I veered around them further into the tall grass.  In the hedgerow along the lane two adult turkeys and I startled each other.  They ran out into the corn field on the other side of the hedgerow.

Tuesday mid-afternoon T. and I watched a large tractor fitted with three large mowers—one in front and two on either side in the rear—quickly cut all the lower meadow.  Once the tall grass was down it was easy to see the patches of ripe wild strawberries and graze on them.  We went on an errand.  By the time we returned, both upper and lower meadow had been shorn. The tractor was gone, all was quiet again.  Numerous long, wide, neat, flat rows of the cuttings lay on the short stubble, quite the manicured look.

When Hawthorne and I took our walk the next morning, I spent most of my time walking around the fields finding patches of wild strawberries, snacking.  The rest of the time was spent watching and wondering if the Bobolink broods had fledged prior to the destruction of their nests. I counted at least eight birds feeding and landing, some of which were smaller and had the needy gestures of young birds and some of which were larger and noisier and acted like parents.  So I am hopeful.

Late Wednesday morning another large tractor returned, this one outfitted with a machine which swept and turned the rows of grass into large windrows. Only four for the lower meadow.  Then later in the afternoon a truck and tractor with a chopper came and chopped the vast windrows into the trucks.  The haylage was taken to feed cows at the large dairy which rents these fields.

In such short periods of time so much can change.

Around here Jay has been ill for a week with a fever and severe head and neck aches.  By this morning he had lost 5% of his body weight and was in pain even with analgesics.  We had gone to the doctor Monday; this morning the Dr. sent us to the ER where we spent about ten hours.

________________

It is now Wednesday, 3 July 2013.

I wrote the last sentence above after returning home late; Jay was admitted to hospital Friday night, tentatively diagnosed with Lyme disease.  Too tired to explain to finish a blog post, I got ready for bed.  Isaac called at 11.20 to ask about his father and planned to visit Jay in hospital Saturday afternoon.

Saturday morning, June 22nd, I woke at 5.45AM to the sound of a vehicle driving in the driveway and Hawthorne barking madly.  State troopers were at the door.

Our son Isaac, 22, was killed in a motor vehicle accident at about 2.30AM Saturday morning.  He drove into a tractor trailer.  His BAC was 0.23%.

Stalking the Wild Antlered Beast

18 Dec

Hunting was not as productive this year.  Yet for the first time in his hunting career Jay sighted,  stalked, and shot this 7-pt yearling buck the Thursday afternoon before gun season ended in a fallow huckleberry field a tenth of a mile from our home.

Sunday Breakfast Tale

2 Oct

Daren called this morning.  It rained off and on all night and into the morning.  Again.  But he was determined to go out turkey hunting so when he got up he glassed the alfalfa field across the road and saw a small flock of jakes grazing in the rain.

He got dressed and looked out the window just as he left to go downstairs.  The birds had crossed the road and were heading for the house.

He ran downstairs and got the gun ready, but before he got out the door, there they were, coming around the corner of the basement.  He fought with a door he does not usually use, eventually getting it open in time to shoot the last jak.

The turkeys had walked right in front of him, across the lawn, up the bank, and were entering the woods behind and beside the house.

We had buttermilk pancakes for breakfast.  I recommend them.   Honey cinnamon butter and hot maple syrup go well with them.  Nuke butter until soft but not melted, add honey and cinnamon until it tasted nice.  Put the syrup in a microwave-safe container before nuking.  Much easier than heating over the stove.

That is steam rising from them.  Hot off the griddle.

Buttermilk Pancakes

from my old Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book, with changes, of course.  Pancake recipes make a batter that is too darn stiff and thick.  Adding more liquid results in nicer pancakes that cook better.  See above.

3/4 cup  each whole wheat and white flours

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 T. sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 beaten egg

1 cup buttermilk

2 T. oil

extra water or milk–1/3+ cup

Mix dry ingredients together.  I use a whisk.  Add the wet ingredients and mix until blended.  Add extra moisture until the batter is moderately thick but will run.  Bake on a hot griddle.  Makes enough for three or four.  Doubles easily.

 

It is now almost 9PM.  It is raining.  Again.  It rained this afternoon, also.

Turkey and Quilts

1 Oct

Happy October First!  The Morning Glories were glorious indeed this morning.  There were more than 45 blooms.  Perhaps they sense their time is just about up?

Jay went turkey hunting this first morning of the season and returned with a nice hen he met on the edge of the cornfield.

Hawthorne was very excited by the arrival of the bird.

 

Ellie and I went to the perennial county quilt show.  There were about 10 Civil War era quilts on display there from the county history museum which were made in this county.  Here are two:

This was made by a member of the Treman family of Trumansburg.  Lots pf striped fabrics. 

Incredibly beautiful.  And below, a silk quilt, perhaps made by Quakers since it is backed with the same drab brown cotton they used to line their silk dresses.

The docent from the museum who shared a bit about these quilts said that the silk in this quilt came from Paris and was of higher quality than Victorian era silks and thus had not shattered.  I asked what the difference in the silks was.

It seems that silk from China was sold on a weight per pound basis and to make the fabric weigh more the element lead was added during processing.  It also gave the silk the nice weight and rustle when used in dresses. The lead, though, also caused the premature decay (shatter) of the silk itself.

French silk, on the other hand, contains no lead.  It also does not rustle.  It shsh’s.

Straw into Gold

23 Sep

Sunday Ellie and I spun flax in the fiber to cloth booth at Judy’s Day. We both wore linen.  Another man spun wool on a walking wheel.

Kathy had spent a long time planning the activities children were able to do: breaking, scutching and  heckling flax.  The breaking board was so loud we removed a tent wall behind us so alleviate some of the noise.

We had an almost constant stream of watchers who asked all sorts of questions.  It was surprising to me how many people did not know that linen was made from flax.

And that the process of spinning is what changes flax into linen.  As the flax leaves the distaff, goes through my fingers, and is wound onto the bobbin, it becomes linen thread.

Over four hours of spinning.  The resultant thread weight: 24 grams.  Thank God for the industrial revolution.  It measured 308 yards.

That is about 2912 yards per pound, plied.

Perhaps  enough to knit a lacy washcloth?

PS:  Earl and Merl are doing very well.  They are living in the bunny hutch and are drinking milk from a pipette only once a day.  Eating nuts, some fruit, corn, veggies on their own.  Pictures tomorrow.

 

Bits

10 Sep

The view from the South end of Mill Street was impressive, too.

 

Yesterday I found 16 Monarch Butterfly larvae on milkweed plants in the fields above the house.  This morning the count was 32.

And  noticed this up in the broken white spruce tree, our large ‘bonsai’.

Look at the apex of the lilac .

It is a sunflower.

A snipe flew out of the corn a couple mornings ago.

23 was the largest number of blossoms on the Morning Glories in one morning.

The rains battered the tomatoes.  They are on a definite downward autumn death spiral now.  And the Autumn Crocus are beginning to bloom.

Wading

9 Sep

For those in the know, this is Mill Street bridge.

And this was Mill Street:

Why not to build a house in a swamp:

This was after the water had receded a couple feet.

%d bloggers like this: