Thursday, September 30, 2010

Mother's Birthday

My mother was born on September 30, 1913.  She died just about two months shy of her 92nd birthday in 2005. 
When she had just turned 80, she announced that she would not live much longer, saying that her brain was programmed to last for 75 years so her body must surely soon follow.  This was a statement quite prescient of the dementia that would soon enough become evident to everyone else.  She cancelled her long standing subscription to Home and Garden Magazine, writing to them that she did not expect to be alive long enough to take advantage of another full year.  She showed me the dress she would like to be dressed in for the funeral.
When she failed to kick the bucket in her 80th year, she decided she was meant to see in the next century.  When Y2K came and went, she decided she must have been meant to reach the 100 year old mark.  Her mental decline was rapid and fierce after that, though.
At the point where we just could no longer maintain her safety and well being in her home, we had to move her into a nursing facility.  I knew that my personal limit would be the incontinent stage, but the move was a little ahead of that.  I maybe should have drawn the line at fighting her into the bath because-wow-those were some battles.  Anyway, I believe that she was content at the end.  There was a man who came and sang on Thursday.  My mom was like a teenage groupie during his performances.  She had ice cream for dessert every night.  She had no physical pain or ills of any kind.  One day she just quietly slipped away.
I'm remembering her especially today.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Dirty Enough for TV

We try to keep a clean and tidy house.  This plan is facilitated by the fact that we no longer have a.) children living with us; b.) cats, dogs, or other pets; c.) jobs that keep us too tired to care about an accumulation of dust and other grime.

Add to that the fact that we are two mildly obsessive-compulsive organizing types, and you'd think that one could eat off the floor on any given day or check for a poppy seed between teeth in the reflection from the polished coffee table.

Well, that certainly is NOT the case at all.  And then, too, one of us is a collector with an impressive amount of stuff that he does not like the other one of us to dust for fear she will break something. 

Still, those TV shows of a few years ago--the ones where a professional organizer came in to help the homeowners get a handle on the garage, or make a home office more efficient, or a family room more functional--they really kind of made me twitch.  The shows that were on this past summer--the ones about hoarders--can not watch them.  I would rather watch blood and guts surgical procedures if it was a forced choice.

I understand that hording is a serious mental health condition.  I'm sure it is a topic that is worthy of a documentary to raise awareness.  A reality show, week after week?  No, thank-you.

Once we get the trans fats and other anti-nutrition substances out of our food, can we start to pay attention to  the trans fat equivalents that are being fed to our brains by "entertainment"?

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Got tomatoes?  How about tomato sauce?

The tomatoes I planted this year were called "Big Girls."  They were kind of late to ripen, but they certainly live up to the "big" in their name.  Four or five tomatoes filled up this whole pot and, since they are also meaty, I ended up with another lovely batch of sauce.

The green beans are long ago done and I pulled up the pepper plant and the cucumbers a while ago, but those tomato plants just keep on going and going.  There are even new blossoms--although fat chance anything will come of those before the first frost.

Mike likes the tomatoes on a sandwich, salad, or just sliced as a side dish, but he will not eat tomato sauce.
Something abut a pissing contest he had with his father while he (Mike) was still in a high chair.

                      "Yes, you will eat that spaghetti before you leave this table!"
                      "No, I will not!  (You can stuff it into my mouth, but you can't make me swallow.)"

Personally, I consider tomato sauce the ultimate comfort food.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Dark Cloud Day

Today I am feeling a bit out of sorts for no good reason whatsoever--the kind of day where my mother would have accused me of getting up on the wrong side of the bed.  I can remember as a kid her telling me that  and I really was being so crabby that day that I could not even stand myself.  The logical solution to my seven year old brain was to get back into bed on the "wrong side" and get back up again on the "right side."  I seem to recall that it worked at the time, and I went downstairs and announced as much to my mother and my siblings who had been suffering from my temper.
I guess that tells me that I can just decide how I want to feel today.  Mike is off playing with his toys, so I'll wallow in my bad mood for a while longer and then I believe I will put on a more sociable face and go out to do some browsing at the fabric store.  Can't stay out of sorts and moody at the fabric store.
As explanation--I have been having a recurring dream in which I am back in college and I have to go to a math class, but I don't know which building it is in, or I get otherwise distracted and miss the class again and again.  Wouldn't you be a bit down after such nightmarish dreams?  Math class??

Sunday, September 26, 2010


Immediately after posting about my delight with my retirement life, I got a call from my old school district with an offer of a long term substitute position.  Amazingly, I feel a bit guilty for declining, but I think I can muster the resolve. I realize that both my health and independence are gifts to be appreciated while I have them, because they are not going to last forever.
It's not the parking lot I find so objectionable.  It's the people who use it as a trash receptacle, an open air bathroom, and a handy assignation spot (in broad daylight on more than one occasion).
I bought an MP3 player.  (I know, welcome to the 21st century, me!)  I thought it might be nice to listen to audio books while doing the housework.  I thought I would have to get my grandchildren over to show me how to use it, but I did manage to figure it out--at least get some music into it.  I can download books from the State library through our local library so I'll give that a try.  However, right now either blogger or my computer is being quite obstinate, so I think I'll go pick up a real book.  I'm just finishing The Wild Girl by James Fergus--a fictional account based on a true incident.  It's very good and I'm almost delaying finishing it.

Thursday, September 23, 2010


A friend recently sent this "history of the apron" to me.  As it happens I had sewn up a whole bunch of aprons, some of which are shown in the picture (although maybe not so clearly).  I always think to put on an apron after I have grease splashes or batter spatters all over a freshly laundered outfit.  In most of the memories I have of my grandmother, she IS wearing an apron and working in the kitchen.
The principal use of Grandma's apron was to protect the dress underneath, because she only had a few, it was easier to wash aprons than dresses and they used less material, but along with that, it served as a potholder for removing hot pans from the oven.

It was wonderful for drying children's tears, and on occasion was even used for cleaning out dirty ears..

From the chicken coop, the apron was used for carrying eggs, fussy chicks, and sometimes half-hatched eggs to be finished in the warming oven.

When company came, those aprons were ideal hiding places for shy kids.
And when the weather was cold grandma wrapped it around her arms.
Those big old aprons wiped many a perspiring brow, bent over the hot wood stove.

Chips and kindling wood were brought into the kitchen in that apron.
From the garden, it carried all sorts of vegetables.
After the peas had been shelled, it carried out the hulls.
In the fall, the apron was used to bring in apples that had fallen from the trees.

When unexpected company drove up the road, it was surprising how much furniture that old apron could dust in a matter of seconds.

When dinner was ready,Grandma walked out onto the porch, waved her apron, and the menfolks knew it was time to come in from the fields to dinner.

It will be a long time before someone invents something that will replace that 'old-time apron' that served so many purposes.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


The sun is setting further to the south each night.  It has definitely lost intensity, and nights, especially, are cooler.  Darkness closes in much sooner than it did just a few weeks ago.  I dread turning the clocks back, but not the way I used to.  I don't have to venture out in early morning or late afternoon any more if I don't want to.

It has been less than a month since we were at the beach in Rhode Island, where it seemed like summer would just last forever.  In the gardens, plants so recently lush and thriving are fading fast.  The work there now is cleaning up and bedding down for the cold months ahead.

After five years of being retired, I suddenly find that I am not attuned to the school year.  The sight of the school bus dropping off the boy next door takes me by surprise.  It used to be that September was the real New Year.  Now autumn slips in a bit more gently.

The scent of apples a tad past ripe gets me thinking about baking an apple pie and then about the friends who always supplied our apple needs, now moved to Colorado.

Autumn once was the beginning.  Now it is clearly a time of endings and of rest.  This is not a bad thing, just different.  My life has changed.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Parking Lots and Permits

Above: In the summer of 2005, this was the view from our back yard taken from the deck.  The lilac bush, so badly in need of a pruning, is the southwest corner of our property.  Behind is about 260 acres of town land.  It was once farm land.  When the town bought it, they located the town garage there and there are cable company satellite dishes behind the trees.  At one time, thirty years or so ago, the town's sanitary landfill (aka: the town dump) was located there.  It has since been capped.  Now there are mountain biking, horse riding, and some walking trails back there.  There used to be four wheeler, dirt bike, and snow mobile trails as well, but those uses have fallen out of favor in recent years.  You might think that with the other recreational uses, hunting would not be allowed here, but that is not the case. Stay out or wear bright orange during hunting season. 
Three months after the picture above was taken, the town's conservation commission decided the have a parking lot installed.  Actually, this was a plan "in the works" for several years with a proposed site at the end of town garage road but that never happened.  So, it is town land and public property, plus there was the go ahead from the town selectboard...
Unfortunately, the conservation commission neglected to check zoning regulations and did not realize that they needed to go through a permitting process before installing this parking lot.  It took two years to get the required permit which was issued with conditions, which included a gate at the main road and complete screening from the abutting landowners' view within three years.  The town didn't like the gate condition in particular, so has made little attempt to meet it (other than appeals to the Developmental Review Board to change the condition).  The parking lot has been closed for two years now.
Below is how it looks today.  Can you see the crab apple trees that were planted to landscape and screen the parking lot?  As far as I'm concerned, the town has had a five year temper tantrum going over this  parking lot.  They got caught not following the rules; they don't want to follow the rules; and they are just going to hold their collective breath until they turn blue.
I wonder... if I decided to turn my house into a tea room and my front yard into a parking lot to accommodate my multitude of potential customers without seeking the appropriate permits and meeting the appropriate zoning requirements, how long would it take town officials to demand fines and reparation?

Monday, September 20, 2010

A Thank-You

I have to take the time today to thank those who read my blog--official followers and friends and family who read on a regular basis.

This sit-down time with the computer would not be nearly as much of an attraction if I did not have the opportunity to read and comment on the amusing and the thought provoking posts of others in the blog community.

And I am grateful and humbled that folks take the time to read and comment on my occasional stray thoughts.

Thank-you, readers!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Squash Soup

A lunch of squash soup with a dab of Greek yogurt and a sprinkle of pumpkin seeds. 

Tonight we will be "bad" and have pizza for supper.

I'm off now to dig up some plants to donate to the library plant sale tomorrow morning.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

End of Summer...

The calendar says four more days of summer, but the weather has taken on an autumn vibe.  I was wishing I had worn mittens on my walk yesterday.  It was 55 degrees, but a cold 55 with cloudy dampness to drive it home.  Today, it was actually a bit cooler when I went out for my walk, but it was warm 50s with blue sky and sunshine.  Definitely, I keep a brisker pace on my walks in this cooler weather. 

I hadn't weighed myself for a long time, so this morning I hopped on the scale because Mike had remarked that I looked like I was losing weight.  I've lost a whopping eight pounds since last spring.  At least it is a downward progression, if I have to look at the bright side.

Now, in spite of the lack of pounds just melting off my body, a part of my saggy butt syndrome is that my pants are too big.  I bought a new pair of jeans at Macy's in June and then it got hot so they were just hanging out in my closet.  When I wore them the other day, I discovered the zipper was somehow defective.  I could not get them unzipped for anything and there was nothing stuck anywhere in the zipper.  Mike gave it a try without luck.  Finally, in desperation, I just pulled them right down and stepped out of them.  I don't have the tags so I cannot return them.  GRR.  I hate buying defective things.

BUT, I can replace the zipper because I bought a new sewing machine.  And I can make myself some new pants.  I bought the NECCHI 4825 and I played with it all this dreary, rainy afternoon.  It is incredibly easy to set up and I am very happy with the basic stitches.  It has some interesting features--like an automatic button hole maker and an overlock stitch for finishing seams.  I'm excited to get to work with it.  In the summer time I set up my sewing in the breezeway, but pretty soon I will have to move back indoors to a corner of the laundry room.  I don't like that because there are no windows and it is quite cramped, but maybe a zippy new machine will get me past that.

So I know summer is ending because I made squash soup today.  So good, it's almost worth having summer come to an end.  I sauted grated carrot, onion and celery; added vegetable stock and a butternut squash I cooked last night.  Today, I threw in a tomato and  a bit of ginger and a bit of curry powder.  Blend it smooth and add some coconut milk.  Now I have to think of something for Mike cause he doesn't do soup.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

No Ifs, Ands or Butts

Margaret, Margaret, Margaret, why, why, why did you have to write about flat butts???  For two weeks now I have done nothing but notice the flat derrieres of women of a certain age and beyond.  This, of course, includes myself.  I notice saggy pants just ahead of me in the line at the grocery store.  Right away I have to check my own rear in the window reflection.  Oh, no!  Another pair of pants for the donate bag.  I cannot leave my house without trying on, checking out and then changing at least three times.  One thing for sure is that going out in sweat pants--well, unless you consider a soggy diaper the height of chic--just don't go there.

Then of course there are the bodacious booties of the college girls and younger women with personal trainers and life long gym memberships sashaying around in their skinny jeans and jeggings.  My envy seems lecherous and unseemly. 

I should revel in my mature body and the life journey it has brought me.  I should appreciate the wisdom that life has taught me.  I'll work on that...right after I get back from my shopping trip.  I'm of to buy a number of voluminous skirts.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Rembering a Visit

She comes int the grandmother's house with her mom and dad.  Her dad sets her down and  it is obvious that she had been sleeping as pudgy fists rub at her green eyes. Her mom pulls off  hat and jacket while the grandmother waits patiently.  This little one is not to be rushed into social interaction.  She buries her face in her mother's sturdy leg, wrapping herself in the safety of her of her mother's nearness.  She peeks shyly then darts her head back against the sheltering leg.  Her fine, brown hair is charged and wispy around her like a halo.  A thick fringe of dark lashes brush her high pink cheeks.  Then she looks up and a smile crinkles her toddler face.  She looks like happiness personified.  She lifts two arms to her grandmother who scoops her up in a bear hug.  "Gramma's house!" she announces.  Let the fun begin.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Bits and Pieces

I started out for my exercise walk yesterday.  It was cool and I had a brisk pace going when I realized that it was just too easy!  I had to run for some intervals to break a sweat and get the old heart rate up enough for some aerobic benefit.  I ran to a telephone pole, walked to the next, ran to the next, etc.--unless it was steep uphill or on the paved road.  Old-woman-running is a sight that the general public probably should be spared.  Hey, at least I don't wear spandex exercise clothing.  At one point I actually did and could get away with it, but I said, there are just things that the public should be spared from viewing.  Anyway, I probably ran a mile out of the 3.7 mile loop and did about the same this morning.  Believe me, I did get the heart rate up and a slow burn blazing in the buns.  I'm not sure where this burst of energy came from, but I hope it goes away because it is slightly annoying.

Maybe it is relief that our participation at the Developmental Review Board about the parking lot behind our house on Thursday night is over with--although the issue certainly has yet to be resolved, but that's another post.

Maybe it's the chia seeds.  They were on sale at the health food store where I went to get the cherry juice the other day so I decided to try them and have been sprinkling them in my breakfast yogurt.

My brother paid a visit yesterday to commiserate with Mike about the gout.  Mike surprised me by making a doctor's appointment.  He has a physical scheduled for October and I was sure he would wait until then.  I've been reading about gout online.  My brother told me about this, and then I saw a picture online.  The uric acid build-up that causes an attack crystallizes in affected joints--and it looks like lots of glass shards, so I can kind of relate, but the pain has to be excruciating.  Mike is able to put socks on, but now his ankle is bothering him from limping around  from the pain in his toe.

I took Mike out to dinner for his birthday last night.  For all the worry I've been doing about what to feed him, he ordered fried whole-belly clams and French fries (but no beer to wash it down).  It was his birthday celebration after all.  Actually, it is ironic that he gets this gout now after six months of watching his diet, losing weight, and increasing his exercise, just generally trying to get healthier.  Go figure.

Because I don't like my washing machine, I am sure it will last for twice its expected life span.  But I really liked my Singer Stylist sewing machine and that died.  Well, it can be fixed with after-market parts but it is probably not worth it.  Since Mike found this machine down the road with a big FREE sign on it, I've used it steadily for three years, and it is, after all, a fifty year old model, I really cannot complain.  I have an equally old White sewing machine that still works, but really does only the very basic of basics.  So now I am in the market for a new machine.  Smitty, the sewing machine maintenance and repair man I've dealt with for years, recommended a NECCHI 4825.  I really trust him to know quality, dependability, and the features I really want so I will give that a serious look.

For fun I made a birthday card for my sister's birthday--not as fancy as a Stampin' Up project, but it'll do.

I also made the bead necklace.  I had to make some copies for my DRB statement, and the copier place just happens to be right near the bead store.  I bought the glass pendant in Florida and just had it on a velvet necklace, but really didn't like it that way.  I do like this with the beads and will really wear it.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Camping, Part II

This woodsy look once surrounded the entire campsite.

 Now, it looks like the above and the below, plus one other newly cleared area.

 Many trees were cut, leaving stumps like this.  This was a live tree, cut to make a levering log.
 The loose dirt is what we filled back into a hole that was dug about three feet deep all the way around this rock.
The fireplace with a baggie of glass and metal brackets and wires--a mess.

Thursday, September 9, 2010


I spent yesterday replenishing the larder--a huge investment of time and cash.  Then, today, I went out to get some cherry juice for Mike since it is supposed to be good for flushing out the uric acid that causes gout.  Then, I had to run out to the store once again.  I have been thinking, "Mike's birthday next Thursday," for nearly two weeks now.  I just didn't realize until sometime this afternoon that "next Thursday" had actually arrived.  I'm a terrible wife.  Happy Birthday, Mike!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


Mike's woke up with a swollen and very painful toe on Sunday morning.  He was trying to remember stubbing it.  I say, if you stub a toe or break a toe, you know it right away.  I diagnosed him with gout--something my father had bouts of and something my brother gets serious attacks of sometimes.  After looking it up online, Mike is inclined to agree with my medical assessment.  This is, I'm sure, just another thing that he will fail to mention to his doctor at his next visit.  At the D'Angelo family reunion, one of his cousins was going down the list of who had poly cystic kidney disease that is a genetic disorder that runs rampant in that family line.  Mike claimed he "didn't know" whether or not he had it...and he's not ever mentioned the family history to his doctor.  I have threatened to accompany him on his next visit, and I am threatening once again.

The family reunion on Saturday was lovely, by the way.  It was held at Mike's cousin's home on Crystal Lake in Connecticut.  I know Mike really enjoyed the conversation and I really enjoyed the food.  His grandson is doing a project on armed forces veterans in the family, so that gave Mike something to research with cousins and the one remaining uncle of the "parent" generation--just the kind of thing he loves--that military history.

There was plenty of talk about the group taking a tour of Sicily next summer.  Mike offered to work on details with the cousin who hosted the party.  That would be a great opportunity should they pull it off. 

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Plus and Minus

All I can say to this is: You go, girl!  What a positive statement about aging.

I don't know what to say about this either, except that it is pretty negative of statement about something.  I read in the paper about a high school boy who was seriously injured at his tech. center, in the electrical lab.  He attached an electrical cable of some sort to one of his nipples.  A second student attached another cable to the first's other nipple.  A third of these rocket science scholars plugged it into an electrical socket.  The resulting shock was enough to stop the boy's heart.  The boy and his parents are now suing the the teacher, the school, and the school district because the teacher did not adequately warn the boys about the dangers of electricity.  Good grief.  Kids can do some stupid things and sometimes they get hurt.  Still, I'm inclined to believe that if my kid did something like this, I'd want to keep it quiet rather than making a public stink about it.  But then, I believe I warned my kids not to stick things into electrical sockets fairly early in their lives.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day

Vermont summer is generally regarded to happen between Memorial Day and Labor Day, which makes this the last day of summer no matter what the calendar says.  And the weather today was certainly cooperating with that bit of folk wisdom.  Mike says it's as though someone just flips a switch.  I'm sure we will have more nice days, but after the record heat of the past week, it does seem fallish today.
My hour of garden work turned into three hours of weeding, rearranging, and digging.  I have some plants to divide so I need to dig more garden space so I'll have a place to put them. 
The thing of it was that I wasn't drenched and blinded by sweat mixed with sun block so I just didn't realize how long I was working out there.  Now I'll have to cut back on some other part of my day.  The library is closed today and I think the digging takes the exercise place of my usual Monday walk there.  Mike will just have to take on supper because I have plans to check out some new blogs and I was planning to go to the garden store.  Somedays just don't have enough hours and others drag on.
I absolutely have to make a trip to Costco tomorrow.  I have been neglecting the grocery shopping generally lately.  I cleaned out the fridge in anticipation of restocking.  Isn't it curious how icky a fridge can get?  I wonder if the door might have been ajar on one of our "away" times lately.  It has not been that long since the last clean out and I found an unusual number of moldy things.  I hope the fridge is not getting ready to die.  I do, however, wish for a peaceful but early death for my clothes washer.  Is it wrong to play favorites with household appliances?

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Camping Trip, Part One

Our canoe glides across the glass-like surface of the cool mountain reservoir.  The rays of the sun penetrating the early morning mist were uncharacteristically warm for the last day of August, denying the red and yellow tinged trees their harbinger of autumn.  Our paddles dipping into the water make the only sound until a loon notices our encroaching advance and takes to its flapping flight.
Each stroke of the paddles takes us farther away from the boat launch and its signs of civilization.  We're heading into the "wilderness" and our favorite campsite on the northwest point of the reservoir.  There are no camp site reservations here.  Each camping trip starts with uncertainty and the tenuous hope that the camp site will be unoccupied.  Today it looks like we are in luck.  No boat nestles on the rocky shore.  Still, we do not celebrate yet.  There is a strange glint from the site.  Maybe a tent is set up there and the campers are out for an early morning fishing trip.  We notice that the vegetation along the  camp entrance seems prematurely brown.
As we pull up to the shore, we can see that there is no tent sent up, but  that the glint is from a charcoal grill some previous occupant has left there.  Immediately, we see that the vegetation along the shore is brown because it has been cut.  Once, birch trees girded this entryway.  They are gone now and it seems someone is intent on opening up the camp site entrance to a full view of Pico Mountain to the east.  We land the canoe and walk up the littered path.  We see that the grill is brand new, not a spot of rust on it.  We see that brush has been cut and piled here and there throughout the site. 
I spy a pile of freshly dug earth in front of the spot where we pitch the tent.  A row of the protruding tops of boulders line the path to that spot, the last one having always caused us some amount of adjusting in how we would position the tent.  It seems the recent occupants had no patience for that rock.  A deep trench was built all the way around it and fresh cut logs were positioned in a lever system to lift a 4' by 4' boulder out of the ground.  The job was far from finished, but it was not abandoned.  I'm thinking that the large trench is a lot less appealing than the rock.
As we look more around the site, our shock does not diminish.  Trees all around have been cut--some at ground level, but many leaving two and three foot high stumps.  Branches are strewn helter-skelter--their brown, dead leaves and twisty twigs spreading across trodden ground.  Drifts of alpine grass lie flattened and trampled. A site that could accommodate two small tents at most is now expanded to hold five or six.
Last year, we had dug two feet of ashes out of the fire place that has served that site for some eighty years.  We carefully rebuilt its circle of rock.  Now it is in ruins, with rocks pushed into the center and piles of broken glass bottles, paper garbage, and an odd assortment of metal brackets and heavy wires.
A profound sadness settles upon us.  A once nearly pristine sliver of wilderness has been hacked and widened, trampled and slashed.  It is as though a brutal murder has been carried out in the space of the month since our last visit.  As we began the hours of clean up with heavy hearts, feelings progressed to outrage.  Who could do this?  Who travels to a distant mountain pool rimmed with dense forest and rocky shore to rearrange what nature had left there?  This is a place where silent kayaks and canoes glide by not even disturbing the deer or occasional moose along the shore.  This is a place where bullfrogs boast loudly in the spring.  Loons nest across the way.  Snapping turtles, beaver, otter, ducks have all swum by.  An eagle made a brief appearance.  Our entertainment has come from chipmunks scurrying in the woods, cedar waxwings darting around the beech trees, a thrush belting out its lovely tune, the antics of a flying squirrel after dark.  Not enough for some, since the evidence shows us that recently fireworks were needed to drown out the sounds of earth at its rest.
Primitive camping is not for everyone, but we enjoy a few days spent walking so gently on the green earth.  We take pride in leaving nothing behind--not even footprints.  We return to our home renewed and refreshed.  This time, though, we also return with a sense of  violation that is almost as strong as a physical assault.  If it takes time and tears to heal such a wound, we have left our tears on the betrayed ground in hopes that time will heal it.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Checking In

We got back from camping this afternoon.  Once again, we managed to spend three days of record breaking heat in the mountains, sitting next to and occasionally dunking ourselves into a cool mountain pond  I'll write about the experience later.  I've had a chance to get a pile of laundry done (almost), dispatch the truly monster weeds in the vegetable garden, and pick pounds of tomatoes and cucumbers.  I froze a gallon of stewed tomatoes, but I just don't know what I'll do with the cucumbers.  I read the newspapers to catch up on the latest doings of Washington, tea party people, Earl, and skimmed through the back log of blogs I follow.  Tomorrow it's pack up once again and head to Connecticut for a family reunion--so I'll miss Justin Beiber at the Champlain Valley Fair.  Right now, I'm pouring myself an extra large ice water--HEY, HERE'S AN IDEA...DROP IN A SLICE OR TWO OF CUCUMBER--and go watch Project Runway, which holds a strange but compelling attraction for me.
Hope everyone has a safe Labor Day weekend,