Wednesday, August 23, 2006

not a farm....

responding to Charleen's comment, I've been informed by Chris that the new home is not a "farm"... it is a "country home on acreage". OK, we'll see what the future holds. His daughter adores baby animals, and, in fact, loves ALL animals. There is an unusual farm somewhere up there in WA that sells wallabies and kangaroos... hmmmm.. Would need quite high fencing, I'm thinkin'. And all those rambling blackberries could benefit from having goats around to keeep the rambling in check. And if goats, then multi-tasking goats would seem logical, like say Angora goats which eat brush AND give spinning fiber. Did I say that Kate and I made a trade whereby she got my Louet spinning wheel and i got her old Canon dig. camera? Yes, indeed, i am just sitting back and waiting.... And, I do know that fiber dyeing is in Kate's future. In fact, there is a fully functional second kitchen on the lower level where the kids' playroom is. This kitchen is perfect for kids' messy crafty activities, and for fiber dyeing!!

Saturday, August 19, 2006

home again...

from 4 days in Duvall, WA with "the kids and grandies". took Amtrak up on Tuesday a.m., met by Kate, Alex and Zylie... and then to their new home in the country setting (which Chris denies is a "farm"!) It really seems to be a perfect place for them, with lots of space indoors and out. Alex and Zylie have the main room on the ground level... once the living room of a fulling equipped living space... inlaw apartment? for their playroom. There is a full kitchen on that level which will be great for science experiments, tie dyeing, etc. (including Kate's dyeing experiments). Kate's office is also on that level. On the middle level is LR, DR, kitchen, BR, Alex's bedroom and a deck that wraps around 2 sides of the house. The deck is one of my favorite spaces... it's wide and overlooks a part of the yard, with hills and mountains as the view. That's where the bbq and hammock are. It faces east, so is a shady and comfy place at the end of a day. And the third floor is where Zylie's room and C&K's room and the big bathroom with the jacuzzi tub are located. Chris even got a ride-on mower with the house .. what a deal! AND there is a basketball court where I (ta da!!) made 2 baskets out of my first 4 shots! Now anyone who knows me will know for certain that I am not a jock or anything like that! but, hey, i got **2** baskets. Zylie was all about deciding names for our teams and Alex was too busy making up rules for the games to bother with playing, but I had fun making baskets!!! Where the yard meets the woods are lots of blackberry bushes. The berries are getting ripe and juicy and here's Alex about to get that biggest, juiciest berry of all:

Chris was doing his mowing duties and Zylie was trying to get me to take a photo of him:

and Chris at work:

and since Alex and his aikido class was part of the week, here is Alex:

and a cute one of Kate and Zylie:

It was a good visit, their new home is great and perfect for them... and it's always good to be back home in my nest. We had dinner on the way home at Santorini, one of the Greek restaurants we like. It always makes me anxious to be back in Crete where there is real Greek food and friendship. two and 1/2 months and we'll be there again!

Monday, August 14, 2006


The main blueberry bush by the patio (part of the edible landscape!) is really loaded with berries this year, and unlike last year, the birds haven't found them! So while Jeanne was here for full moon, she picked bowls full of 'em. There is a limit to how many handfulls of blueberries i can eat, so i asked Pop if he'd like to come out yesterday and make a blueberry kuchen, then have dinner with us. It being the weekend, he was bored by lack of planned activity at his assisted living (no bingo!), so agreed to the plan. here's how he made his delicious kuchen:
-- place purchased pie crust in pie pan
-- put in 2 1/4 cups blueberries (or whatever it takes to fill pan)
-- combine 1 cup sugar and 1 tsp. cinnamon, sprinkle over berries
-- place foil over edge of pan and crust
-- put in pre-heated 400F oven for 15 min.
-- remove and reduce oven to 320F
-- mix together 2 eggs (or egg sub. equivalent) with 3/4 cup sour cream and pour over contents of pie pan and remove foil from edge
-- place in oven and check after 45 min. It should be bubbly and firmish. if not, return to oven until it is.

While the kuchen cooled, we ate the lovely dinner that Jim prepared.... grilled salmon, Greek salad, orzo pilaf and corn on the cob. ummmm... bliss! I think i'll make this and it better be soon, before the birds do find the blueberries.

I've been on a dyeing marathon again, and sent boxes of rovings to Lynne for a class she just did in NH at Harrisville Designs and one coming up in Michigan end of August. Just got some domestic wool top (Brown Sheep) which I think I'll get lots more of. It dyes beautifully, is soft and spins up nicely into a really cushy yarn. haven't knitted with it yet, but it is lovely yarn!! and it's domestic wool, which is a definite plus!

Taking Amtrak on Tues. a.m. to Seattle, then to Duvall to spend a few days with C&K and kids in their new home. It's in a country setting about 7 miles from where they were living, 5 acres, lots of trees around. Wondering how long it will be before sheep show up there... and maybe chickens? Makes me smile, because after growing up here on the farm with sheep, llamas, bunnies... and having the chores related to that, Chris said he had no desire at all to ever do that again in this lifetime! we'll see...

Thursday, August 10, 2006

the simple things

How sweet it is! one of my favorite things about summer is fresh from our garden red, ripe, warm from the sun tomatoes with crispy bacon on grainy bread.... ahhhh, delight!!

I scored at Good Will today. Found a wooden picture frame the right size for an oil painting that my step-brother, Jim, gave me. Finally had the forethought to measure the painting before going shopping... whooda thought? Also, found a light-weight jacket with hood and lots of pockets that i'll take on our travels this fall, and it's red and doesn't even look like it's ever been worn. I love shopping at Good Will!