Monday, July 25, 2011

Hodge-Podge Update

It has been too busy to keep the blog sufficiently updated. A few tidbits to catch up:

While filling the  stock tank inside the loafing shed a couple weeks ago, my alzheimers-ish brain got distracted, forgot  about the water filling, and it seriously overflowed in the shed.  Bethany and Brendan got to help me muck out the shed, and I do mean muck. Actually, first we had to do some bailing. Our new slogan is "When life gives you manure, make manure tea." We filled up the  big wheelbarrow and made manure tea for the tomatoes, squash and rhubarb.
Last week, Rog's mom Ruth visited from Oregon and our daughter Sara visited from North Carolina.  The weather  was not very  kind  - both of their flights were cancelled the first day, then delayed for hours the second day (the day we got 5 inches of rain and had fierce winds). The entire time they were here the temperature and humidity were  extremely high, reaching a record heat index of 118 F one day.  So, we spent most of our time indoors trying to keep cool, playing Scrabble and cards and just talking.
Sara got to meet our surrogate summer kids, Bethany and Brendan.  They collaborated cooking some delicious meals and braved the heat to go blackcap berry-picking.

Ruth and Sara's visit was far too short, and of course the morning they had to leave was wonderfully temperate and sunny.
The elderberry flowers are now done, but before  they ended Bethany explored their many culinary  uses: elderflower tea, elderflower syrup, elderflower cupcakes and these yummy elderflower fritters. To make the fritters, the flower heads are dipped in a light beer batter (or use club soda instead of beer), fried and sprinkled with confectioners sugar. 
A pretty barn swallow has chosen our milking parlor for her nesting site. She built her nest directly above where I set my bucket to sit on while milking.
 (If you ever see me with a bird dropping in my hair, this is probably where it came from.)
Rog repaired and reconnected the outdoor faucet, so now we have hot and cold running water on the patio--meaning we no longer have to haul those 5-gallon buckets through the house from the kitchen to clean the bucket milker. Yay!
One morning before it got unbearably hot, I persuaded Rog to lay out the stones to border the little birdbath garden that was totally disrupted when we  had to work on the septic system last spring. One clever little hen assisted by nabbing the worms he turned up.
I planted a few perennials and filled the birdbath, floating a little piece of wood that the honeybees can land on to gather water. This is the improved view out the dining room window.



gz said...


Sadie said...

I've flooded the chicken house while filling up their tank (from a 30 gal trash can). Twice. We got a new auto waterer outside so I wouldn't do it again.