Friday, August 26, 2016

For Katie

A friend of mine died unexpectedly, on Wednesday.  She was a walking buddy.  I know I have mentioned her before.  She is the one who was the mushroom expert and the one who has published several books, some on wild edibles.  She was going to come over and remind me of the wild plants on my property that I should be enjoying but alas she won't be able to now.

Katie has lived in Lexington most of her life and knew everyone.  But she didn't treat you any differently, if you just moved to the area.  She liked most people except a few that she would talk about on our walks.  It seemed to always be around food that she didn't like them, hum.

She walked more days than I did, unless she was traveling somewhere, which she did every chance she got.  She went to Mexico every winter for a few weeks and just recently returned from Belize.  She enjoyed every place she visited, and I especially enjoyed our walks when she would return from wherever.  I wonder if her husband will travel now?

Katie could spot an edible mushroom a hundred feet away up  a steep bank and she would climb up after them.  She picked wild mustard on our walks and would invite us all over, after the walk, to eat them steamed with butter and lemon.

Katie volunteered with Hospice and the Habitat Store and probably in other places I did't know about.

Katie had been in so much pain lately due to some misaligned discs in her back.  Her back pain had flared up several times in the time I have known her but she walked through it whenever she could.   She had become so discouraged lately because she couldn't enjoy life without moving and doing.

When Beverly moved, there were 5 of us walking, now with Katie gone, we are down to 4.  Another hole.

Anytime a life ends, there is a hole, because only that life did some things.  The rest of us try to make that hole a little smaller, anyway we can.  It is too early for me to know what I should take on for Katie.  I do know that I will try to walk more often.

Katie will be missed immensely.  We all Loved her, her stories and her humor, and her perseverance.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

A Two Event Day

It has been a busy week and today we finished off the week with 2 events.

The little church, that I have talked about before, which is down the road, had their annual reunion today.  John and I were invited because we replaced the shutters this year.

Our road is named  after this church; Cedar Hill Church.  It is a tiny church but today it was filled with about 30 descendants of the people who began the church in the 1874.  The church was also a school at that time for black children since they could not go to school with white children.

In 1927 the people began to move to Lexington and the church was closed.  It was closed until 1965 when a few of the descendants  made some repairs to the church and started having reunions.  Fifty years later, they are still having reunions in August and making sure the church is taken care of.  Everyone was so appreciative of John replacing the shutters.  The previous shutters had been on since 1965.

 I wonder if any of the past residents of the Cabin at Cabin Spring  Farm, went to that sweet little Baptist church.  

After the picnic and service ( a very fun one) we had to get over to the Palmer Ice Cream Social to scoop ice cream.  I have scooped ice cream the past 3 years and consider this one of my community responsibilities.  I should put this on my resumé.  The Palmer Community Center was once a school for the white students. Two historic schools in one day, hadn't thought of that.

A day of Great Food, Great Music, and Great Fellowship.

Charlotte was taking it easy today because she somehow injured her left front leg.  I gave her some arnica and she seemed a little better this evening.  I should have brought her some ice cream.

It is raining and this should make tonight and tomorrow cooler.  I know we will all appreciate that.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Finding an Easier Way

Trying to find an easier way to get pictures to the blog-- this may work.

A series of early morning pictures taken the other day.  I love zinnias.  I also love the leaf of the fig tree.  This is probably the most protected spot on the property.  Maybe we will have figs in a few years.

We ate one peach off the peach tree this year.  The frost got most of the blossoms  and then, of course a few dropped off and were eaten by some lucky animals.  We had ours with some vanilla ice cream.

The goslings have almost made it through that awkward feather/ fluff stage.  Prince likes to follow Cirrus around and act like dad.  John probably likes having another male on the farm (they are way out numbered) but Cirrus has been going after John a little since he is not the main feeder anymore, and Prince is starting to follow suit.

The sheep have been checking out the new fawn that seems like it is all alone.

Still HOT but we are managing.  Good weather to sit in an air conditioned house and figure out an easier way to get photos to the blog. Hum-- I guess another hot day will be devoted to the task but maybe Lyndy will have insight into this.  Here are a couple of recent pictures of her tiny house.

 The blue tape is where kitchen shelves will be.

The floor is done and the electric is all hooked up.  Now there is a working fan and even an air conditioner.

Getting closer to moving time.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Summer Time and the Living is Not So Easy

So just when I was feeling guilty about not writing a blog recently, I went to my blog list and mine was the latest on the list. I guess it is just too hot to think.

It has been an interesting summer.  It seemed sort of typical and then it got hot and humid.  It gets hot here but not for so many days in a row and not SO humid.  The sheep look at me like, when is it going to cool off ? and I just say, "O.K. , I will leave the fan on."

 We are going to have a huge electric bill.  First of all, we have had the air conditioner on most of the day for the last week and a half instead of just a couple of hours.  Then there is the comfort of the sheep to consider.  And the last 3 nights we have had a young newly wed couple spending their honeymoon in the cabin with two  air conditioners going day and night, I think.  ka ching, ka ching. With all of our   comfort features in place we have been comfortable but what about the living creatures that don't have that luxury.  I guess the animals know what to do, if they have the comforts they need available to them.

  I have some friends that do not have air conditioning in their homes.  Maybe they are riding around in their cars or maybe just sitting in front of a fan like the sheep do, sometimes.  We are headed to a wedding, soon, in a place warmer than here.  I think we will be in air-conditioning most of the time but we will still feel the effects, I'm sure.

At least we have been having scattered showers.  Sometimes that cools things off for a short period but then it gets steamy.

I think feathers is the answer.  The geese don't seem to notice the heat and the chickens roll in the hot dust.  I have been trying to get some things done and trying to sweat off some pounds but I have not been very successful on either count.

Occasionally, I can talk myself in to doing more than just barnyard chores in the early hours.  I took a bunch of pictures the other morning and they make things look like everything is lovely.  Well it is lovely-- just hot.  I must try to go through all of those pictures and post a few and remember how it felt, that morning, when the living was easy.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

What Are The Odds?

Back from Chicago!!  It was a good trip except for the 11 hour train delay, going out.  I went to help one of my sisters  pack for a move.  The first 3 delays were for trees on the track.  Apparently, a storm passed in front of us knocking down many trees.  At least I was sitting next to a woman with much in common and we talked about dung beetles and broody chickens.  She even showed me a video she had taken of a dung beetle rolling dung.  What are the odds to find such interesting conversation on a delayed train.  It was amazing. For a video from the internet, see the last post.

While I was gone John took care of the farm.  One night he was doing double duty because a neighbor was away and needed his chicken coop closed.  Somehow, in all the craziness, the coop here, did not get closed that night.  So a predator in the night snatched a chicken.  After that, some of the chickens were afraid to go back and chose bad places to roost.  Now we are down to 4 resident chickens.  One night- what are the odds?

So, my moving sister, found a guy to move her things for a great price.  I packed around 20 boxes and then there were, of course, the furniture pieces that don't get boxed.  I like to kid her by saying, "what are the odds" that her things will make it to their destination.  And if they do, what are the odds that she will be able to find what she needs without opening all the boxes, which she doesn't want to do because she will be moving shortly to another house.

I guess we all take chances, in one way or the other every day. And most of the time things work out O.K.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

The Gifts of a Summer Night

I love lightning bugs, fire flies, or whatever you want to call the magical beings of summer nights.  Many times I have wanted to try to take a picture with a long exposure and try to capture many at once.  I tried a few things last summer, but nothing came out.

Tonight, I went down to close the geese in and give them some water and one of the gosling's chest lit up, just like some kind of toy.  I took a double take and then saw it again.  I thought it must be that a lightning bug flew in front of the gosling but the light was in the same place for 3 or 4 flashes.  Then Sal laid in front of the goslings as they went to sleep and I couldn't see any more.  She didn't seem to think anything of it.  I thought it was very bizarre and worried that it might hurt the gosling but they  do eat bugs, occasionally, and a fire fly is just that, a bug.  I saw Cirrus eat a regular fly off his back today.

As I turned to leave, I was treated to an amazing light show, with hundreds of lightning bugs.  The strange thing is, now I am sitting on the front porch, and as I look out over the front yard, I have seen 2 or maybe 3.  Instead, I listen to an orchestra of crickets and others.  The middle act was my neighbors cattle, sounding like they were heading out on a cattle drive.  And now the cattle come back in, to join the crickets, being careful not to overpower them.

This is another one of the times when I realize that it doesn't matter, rich or poor, the sights and sounds of summer evenings are available to everyone.