Sunday, October 12, 2014

Harvest Day

It was frosty outside this morning but I went out in my hoodie and Crocs with my trusty herb shears (a birthday gift from DIL1 that I use often and love) to reap what I'd sowed... planted... whatever.  I filled my pockets with ripe-ish tomatoes.  I don't know if they've frozen (although they aren't wrinkled, pruny, or blackening) but I think they deserve a chance.  I uprooted the thyme from the garden, cut off two handfuls of chives and all the parsley.  I wrap the handfuls with the thick rubber bands that come around asparagus, etc. from the grocery so that as the herbs dry and shrink the bands shrink too, then I hang them from the rafters in the coolest, darkest corner of the basement.  I'm too late to save the basil but it didn't do well this year anyway, and I don't know why, but last year I blanched and froze the basil leaves and there's plenty of it left in the freezer.  I kind of like it that way.  I left the leaves whole, dropped them into boiling water for as long as it took me to pick up the strainer spoon, dropped them in ice water to stop the cooking, blotted them on a towel to take out some of the water, and then laid them out on waxed paper-lined cookie sheets to freeze.  Once they were frozen I put them into zipper freezer bags and just take out what I need, chop it, and dump it into the recipe.  It smells and tastes way more basil-y than the dried stuff.  Thanks for the suggestion, DS!

Durwood called me yesterday afternoon to say that the bluejays had completely emptied the peanut wreath.  I wasn't sure I believed him but, gosh darn it, he was telling the truth.  When I got home from Fleet Farm with the back of my car filled with birdseed the peanut wreath was dead empty--so I filled it back up (see the bluejay flying away?), and I filled the platform feeder and the finch feeder too.  I left the heavy bags in the car and will ask DS to carry them in for me later when he comes to help pack books, etc. for the carpet install in a couple weeks.  (can't leave it for last minute, there's too much to do)

Our DD lives in Lexington, Kentucky which is far, far away and I know she wishes that she was closer, especially when Dad and Mom are having health adventures, so while I was at The Clearing she sent a box to Durwood.  In it was a can of cashews (his fave), some coffee nips (he's a fool for coffee), some red hots for me (I love cinnamon candies), a crossword book and pencils, and a pair of fish fabric pillowcases for our bed.  Durwood's is the softest flannel I've ever touched and mine is cotton because I'm always hot.  Last Christmas (or maybe the Christmas before) she gave us a silly fleece horse-printed blanket so, since Durwood likes extra covers, I put that on his side.  Now we're both sleeping in a warm hug from our darling daughter.  Ahhh.

In knitting news, I finished the bike helmet earmuffs for my friend yesterday.  I put them on my bike helmet to take their finis photo and think they look great.  It's such a clever idea I wish I'd thought of it, and it's really a fast knit--if dive shop customers and hospital people don't keep interrupting you.  Once I had the tails (only 2!) of the earmuffs woven in, I buckled down to work on the Carmen Vintage Hankie Washcloth while watching the first segment of Ken Burns' The Roosevelts which I DVR'ed.  I liked it, it was mostly about Teddy and I think he's always been my favorite.  I have only 2 more rounds to go before the crocheted edging commences and that's usually done in one sitting.  THEN I'll tackle the last few inches of the Oriole Wing Wrap.  Cross my heart.  Really.  I mean it.  I should work on the charity baby blanket too.  Other knitters have handed in theirs, some of them a few blankets, and I'm not even halfway with my first one.  I'm so ashamed.  No, I'm not really but I need to finish it.  But somebody's granddaughter needs a new winter hat and somebody's grandma found a pattern and she's sure she has some yarn that would be just perfect for it... but she won't cast that on until she has one of her WIPs (and not the washcloth, that's too easy) finished.  *nods emphatically*

Italy, Amalfi, Oliphant.  Drake stuck the ivory horn in his belt and walked on.  The carvings showed the beasts and birds of his home and seeing them made him a bit less homesick.  In the carved horn he kept the gold his father sent as payment for the spices and carpets Drake was charged with bringing back to the household.  At night he slept with it under his bedroll and in the day he wore it at his side.  His manservant, Emet, carried his letters of passage in a leather pouch and led their pack horses.  While they traveled through the local lord's holdings a squad of armed men escorted them but once they crossed the border into Thalia they were on their own.

Today I'm going to get ride of some of my shoes.  When I said that to DS he said he'd never heard of a woman getting rid of shoes but I only wear a few pairs and I'm tired of giving house room to all of them.  So there.  We'll see how that goes.  The ones that hurt my feet will be first in the box.  I hear a bluejay.  I wonder if there're any peanuts left.  Good thing bird peanuts are cheap.  Bon bini!

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