Over the fence chat for Fall, 2004

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Beyond the Sidewalks : One Thread

Gee, remember when these were a weekly thing? Sure miss all of our charter members.... Wonder whatever happened to Jim? I fell out of touch with Sharon a while back, wonder if Kim and Dave are still farming, and if Dave has been back out on the research boats? It's good to see a core group still here though; and I am amazed to realize that I have been talking with some of you folks for FIVE years now! Wow, I can barely maintain a physical friendship that long, - if that long!

Well, as you folks may remember, when Countryside was absorbed by the new forum and quickly turned into the "Chuck and Melissa Show", I opted out. Later on, another new forum was started by the "heathens" from that forum; much like Beyond the Sidewalks split from the old Countryside forum; and I recieved an invitation to join. That new forum is Today's Homestead, and can be located by typing www.todayshomestead.com into your addy bar. Several folks from here are there (and boy, was it nice to see them too!) It's not quite like the old Countryside (or what my rose colored memories of the old Countryside were like!), but there are some good folks there, so if you are looking for a forum home, or if this thing goes kaput, you can find some of the old gang there.

My reason for bringing that up, is that they are having a forum get together/campout at Tyler Bend State Park in Arksanas on F/S/S September 24,25,26 this fall. I will be there on Saturday afternoon and Sunday, and am hoping to have a really good time. I'm sure that any of you folks would be more than welcome; tho I know it would be quite a drive for most of you - it's an 8 hour trip for us.

That get together will be the start of Hubs and my vacation for this year - we are going to attempt the Grand Canyon trip again - avoiding the entire state of Kansas this time. (Who says I can't hold a grudge?!) Pop doesn't want to go, so we will be camping part of the time, and staying in some state park cabins, but I also have 3 motels figured in: the Wigwam motel in Holbrook, AZ; the Frey Marcos hotel at Williams, AZ; and one that has a hot springs pool at Pagosa Springs, CO - that one will be right after camping and hiking Mesa Verde, so I am sure that the hot spring soak will be more than welcome!

On the home front, garden season is trying to wind down here; or I am trying to wind it down! I have been giving away tomatoes right and left, but there are still tomatoes rotting on the vines - not entirely my fault, as we have had scads of rain lately. I will be doing some garden clean up today and tomorrow, as the weather is supposed to be decent. I have vacation from Labor Day thru the 14th of September, so we will spend that time getting the farm, garden and house set up for winter. I have been feeling harried all summer with seeing things undone while I have been working extra hours, so it will be good to feel that things are back under control (however teunously!) for a while.

I did manage to get the pantry and freezer stuffed with home grown food while I was ignoring the dust bunnies and weeds - I actually had to go BUY some canning jars (but only a dozen!) when I ran out of pints. Then I found a box out in the shed.... We still have plenty of quarts; mostly wide mouth ones that I am too cheap to buy lids to use! Hey, they cost half again as much as regular ones! (And besides, those have all been sitting out in the shed and are all dusty and grubby and full of spiders - eewww!)

Well, I'd better go find a dress and stuff myself in to it as Hubs wants to go to town - today we will see the mortgage go below $48,000; quite a drop down from $106,000 just 8 years ago, so we are making progress. Now, if the taxes would just drop the same way....

You folks all take care; stop in and visit a bit,

-- Anonymous, August 30, 2004


I have wondered about a few of the old crew also. Maybe Dave is still doing research. I even did a web search against jims addresses and handles to see if anything turned up.

Personally I have scaled back facets of my operation here in both BISF and worm ranch in favor of personal gardening and limited bait production while concentrating on my investments.

-- Anonymous, August 30, 2004

So good to keep up on what everyone's doing. I'm so stretched right now, I don't have time to write. Maybe after Labor Day. We are still trying to get going on building the house in E. WA (heading over to talk to yet more contractors this weekend), Mr. S. is finally (Yipppeeee!) graduating from school tonight (it's only been 3 years), and of course work, gardening, harvesting, family, etc., is absorbing all my energy. Mr. S. is interviewing...may have a FT job in Seattle at a big hospital, although a hospital or clinic closer to home would be nicer. I'm so proud of him...maintained his perfect grades for 12 quarters without a break (I guess his open-heart surgery wasn't exactly a vacation last year), plus tutored, plus is doing really high-quality imaging as a rad tech. He sits for the registry next week...I think he should be able to pass just fine. Anyway,


-- Anonymous, September 02, 2004

Oh Polly,

I meant to say: Congrats on the mortgage redux!! You are really amazing!

-- Anonymous, September 02, 2004

Still working on new old house; new floors on third floor should be done this week, so I can book the movers now i guess. Our place closes on oct 15th. Miss Lotus terribly; can hardly stand to go to the basement, we feel her absence so profoundly its like somebody died! Went to her gig the other night; she was wonderful as usual but i have some real problems with her bass player, and definitely think he is holding her back.

She also got a part-time job at whole foods, which is wonderful, in the bakery, so will get a badly needed food discount, since she and matt on livin on love.

Ali has been spending lots of time with friends in town, which is wonderful; she was way too isolated out here and was starting to get kinda agoraphobic. Still has no clue what she wants to do with her life, but we're putting no pressure on her about it,not that that would help!

Big storm coming;better get off puter! Tornadoes possible. This has been the coldest summer on record, hope it lasts into december to make up for it!

-- Anonymous, September 05, 2004

My parents and grandmother came down for a visit last weekend and we had a really nice time. It's the first time any of them have seen this house. My grandmother's sister lives about 45 minutes north of here so they stopped by there on the way. Grandma has been living in an assisted living facility since last fall so she really enjoyed getting out and about. We put her house up for sale this past spring but had no interest in it, so for now my youngest sister and her boyfriend are living there. Grandma brought down a couple of her sewing boxes for me to keep. They mostly were full of crochet granny squares and yarn in shades fashionable back in the 70s, but in the bottom of one I found a beautiful pieced quilt top. Grandma can't remember where it's from, but her mother was a quilter and from the style of the fabric it looks to be from about the 1940s. One of these winters I'll have to finish it.

The kittens and cats are all fine. Everyone's been hauled off and "snipped" to hopefully the population will stabilize. The kittens have discovered how to climb trees, thankfully they've all been able to get down so far. :)

I'm still spinning and knitting quite a bit. The kittens like to chew on the yarn and pounce on the needles while I'm knitting, so I've been going in to work 30 minutes early each day and knitting in my car. I"m working on some socks using magic stripe yarn. The yarn in the skein just looks like it's speckled, but the colors are spaced so that as you knit the socks they come out striped. I just finished one last night and I'll get the next one started today. Last week when the family was here we took them over to the little state park that isn't too far from our house. They have an old 1840s farmhouse that they're working on restoring. The volunteer working there that day said that they're hoping to eventually have people there in period clothing to demonstrate traditional crafts, so I gave her my name and phone number. I think that would be so much fun!

I'd better go for now. My friend Karen and her daughter Jess are coming up to the house this afternoon. Jess is old enough to go with us to the Ren Faire now so I'm taking her measurements to make her some garb. I asked her if she wanted to be a wench or a princess, and she said a wench. Girl after my own heart! :)

-- Anonymous, September 06, 2004

I am so upset with myself. I stopped at the pet shop in the mall to look at puppies and saw the cutest. She was pawing the cage looking at me, I was pawing the glass looking at her. Gary asked the guy to let me hold her. She was kissing me and so sweet. No runny eyes or nose, looked real healthy. Gary held her and she turned upside down to look at me. Meanwhile I have tears in my eyes because I don't want to buy a puppy from a pet shop. Asked the price anyway..$800. Tears ready to drop, I handed her back. I got home and called the breeder I found asking if she had any luck with a litter but she didn't call me back. Four days later, I got in touch with her. She said that her girls must be getting old because they haven't caught last two times. (Gee, think she could have called me back.) I kept thinking about the puppy so I run back to the pet store but she was gone. Didn't think she would be there, she was that cute. Shih a poo. White with a black head and spots. Little curly tail.

Anyway, I bought a new buck. I think he'll turn outs some nice kids. Spent more then I wanted but not too bad. When I brought him home, it was really hot and humid. He was also stressed from leaving his buddies. so of course, he stopped peeing. I called the vet and as we were talking, he peeped. Well, that was a waste of $35. I had squirted vinegar and water up his sheath so that might have been what did it. She didn't like the way he was straining though and gave me some medication. I have mix it with apple juice and to hold his head to get it down. And his horns are at just the right angle to dig into my thighs...ouch! I gave him a little girl to keep him company now and he is happier. Not so lonely. I'm not sure what he'll do when I take her away. Hopefully he'll be too busy doing his husbandly rights.

Sherri, I keep missing those fiares. Will have to make a point of getting to one at least once in my life.

EM, Glad the house is coming along. Biggest fear is hidden mold.

Sheepish, Congrats to hubby!

Polly, hope you got the morgage. We have tax assessors coming around to re-evaluate so since the value of my house has gone up, so will my taxes. They are already at $5200, don't need more.

-- Anonymous, September 06, 2004

Hi everyone!

We are *so* busy. Just like everyone else it seems! Mr. S. just started a new job at a BIG hospital in Seattle (the biggest). He gets great benefits and excellent pay, and I'm so happy for him. He took the bus into the city (they pay for his transportation) but it took him a really long time to get there and get back...lots to figure out.

We've been in E. Washington on weekends meeting with contractors and stuff for the house. The folks over there are on a much slower timeline than we are (I guess we are getting too citified..we NEED to move over there) so we're trying to work it all out. When I have time to write, I'll tell you about it.

The garden is waning. V. wilt took my tomatoes again ($(#*)# (*!!!!). Got lotsa squash and cukes still. We've had so much cold rain. The new chickens (40+) are doing well. Many banties and many roosters. The big ones are all pullets tho. Got good alfalfa this year, but sheep still ok on grass.

How is everyone else doing?!! I miss you folks.


-- Anonymous, September 20, 2004


I've picked up the knitting needles again! I'm making a sampler afghan (the published one that's been around for 100 years) Have fleeces to wash and wool to pick, card, and spin. You sound like it's working for you! Baaa for now...

-- Anonymous, September 20, 2004

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