Thursday, February 27, 2014

My office visitor (the highlight of the day)

I think today was supposed to be the coldest day of the week.  When I went out to my car the temp read -20 degrees F.  Brrr, flipping, errr. Yes, there was school closings, but not any of ours. I'm really hoping the temps start rising this weekend.  Not sure how much I will want to be outside if it's really cold out.

Work was good. Had my nose to the grindstone and during my office meeting I heard a jingle sound just outside my door and some pacing.  When the meeting was over and I opened the door, guess who was there? 

Well, most wouldn't know but this is my publisher's dog.  He's some fancy golden doodle or something. He's a sweet dog and loves running around the office building and getting all the attention.

I know, not the best photo.  He doesn't like to be still for very long and when he sees the camera he turns away.

Made it home and had a nice phone conversation with a former coworker.

Then I finished my dishcloth.  On the off chance the person it's intended for *does* read my blog, I'm not posting a pic just yet.

Daily 5 of things that made me happy today

1. My son has thought of something to give up for Lent.

2. I made it home in one piece after nearly being T-boned.

3. My dishcloth is done.

4. I get along with my coworker.  She's so normal and nice.

5. Elvis seems to have been accepted back into the flock. 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Back on track

Maybe ...

Yesterday I woke up and decided that I couldn't go to work.  Sick day! I brought my son to latchkey came back home and crawled back into bed.  Then I spent the rest of my time home alone on the couch watching Me-TV.  I felt awful.

This morning I felt marginally better and decided to head into work.  I got caught up on work and did some stuff early.  My coworker was really sweet and picked up a Bolthouse Farms Smoothie drink that has mega Vitamin C in it.  My first time having one of those.  They are *really* good.

Tonite was religious ed night and I used my "free" hour to work on my dishcloth and I listened to episode 3 of Dark Matter Knits. This episode spoke to me.  Her topic was "quiet" and she discussed an audio book she recently listened to. The book was "Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can't Stop Talking."

Turns out I had listened to this author in a video several months back.  Now I realize she was discussing a book and not just giving a presentation.

On the way home I was fighting the wind.  The wind was pretty strong tonite. I made it home in one piece. I've been told that we are to get some more snow tonite (boo!) and tomorrow there will be windchill factors in the -40 degrees F.  There's already chatter about schools closing. So far our schools are still open.

The babies are still growing by leaps and bounds.  A  couple of them have managed to "fly" up to the top of the tote.  Then they look around and don't know what to do because it's so big outside the tote and usually they jump right back in.

I noticed some new vocalizations tonite.  I think it was the black one.  It was kind of a trilling sound.

I just love the way this one looks.  I can't wait til she's bigger and a full mini version of her mama.

This one tried hiding under the black one.  She couldn't get away from me. .

They didn't care for the camera invading their space. The white one was a bit curious.

Daily 5 of things that made me happy today

1. How sweet my coworker was today.  I also had a blast chatting with her.

2. My magnetic board at work is all fixed. Yay!

3. Being able to watch a podcast during my son's rel. ed class.  I'm way behind on all my "shows".

4. The new season of Survivor started tonite.  I won't be able to watch it til tomorrow.  Then my friend and I can chatter away about it.

5. Being able to take a sick day and not worry. I have close to 100 days accrued.  Might as well use them if I need them.

I just realized that today is my blogoversary.  I've had this blog for seven years.  That is amazing to me.  It wasn't until the last couple years that I think I found my voice and direction however.

Well ... until next time :-)

Monday, February 24, 2014

First day back to work

Today was my first day back at work in what feels like forever, actually since last Tuesday. It was also publishing day. The day went pretty well, all things considered. Paper got done before 4 p.m.

My coworker and I were swapping blizzard stories and daydreaming about beaches and basically anywhere that is warmer than we are.

When I walked into my office I saw right away that one of my magnetic bulletin boards managed to break out of the frame, fall and crash. No major damage.  Not sure if it can be fixed.  Half a frame looks awful funny on my wall.

Anywho ...

I got home a bit late and I've mostly been taking it easy and doing some knitting. It's the dishcloth for the swap I'm in.

I did clean out the tote and put some fresh pine shavings in for the babies.  They were happy little ones when the discovered they had fresh stuff to scratch and take "baths" in.

They've managed to scratch a hole in the shavings and kick a bunch of it into their water. 

Still trying to figure out who the grey one belongs to. 

 The yellow one's black feather is getting more pronounced.

There was lots of cooing and happy chirps when they went back into the tote.  I think they are sleeping now.

 Daily 5 of things that made me happy today

1. I dropped my taxes off this afternoon.

2. Publishing day went pretty smoothly

3. How my little one's are enjoying their freshly cleaned tote.

4. Watching a program with Steven Hawking on it tonite. It was nice to watch something other than cartoons.

5. How long the days are. 

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Quiet Sunday

It was a bit of a quiet and random day today.  Temps were colder, we *did* cut and split wood, but it was a quiet day.

My son had a birthday party to go to today and he enjoyed it.  It gave my guy and I some time to run to Menards and price some things out for replacing the shed that has been crushed like a soda can.

This will be a shorter than usual blog post. 

 Daily 5 of things that made me happy today

1. It was a beautiful and sunny day. Temps were down, but the brightness of the sun made up for some of it.

Since the sun was *so* bright, we were making crazy amounts of power with the solar panels. 
This readout says 925 watts but it was hitting close to 975 watts before this.  We couldn't get a photo of it.

2. My finger is feeling okay after getting smashed today.  It hurt bad enough that I cried a little bit.  It throbbed and ached for a while, but it's not broken.

3. How the babies fall asleep.  The snuggle up in groups or pass out with their beaks in the pine shavings. 


My guy took this photo, but didn't know that I can't fix the red from the bulb. There'd be a lot of more videos of the babies, but I hate having to pull the red light away and risking them getting chilled. 

We do take the babies out for a few minutes at a time, but they still can't be without a heat source for too long. This is their third week of life, if I remember my dates correctly.  They seem to be going through all the phases quicker than our first set of chicks.  

This is definitely Grandma P's baby.  And the feathers on the legs are getting a bit more pronounced. 


4. We jokingly call my car "Prius F150" or "Prius 150" and this past friday she kind of proved that point.  I hauled seven 2 x 4's from Menards to home. The guy at the gatehouse seemed really surprised that we got them to fit.  I'm sure he was scoffing when I first pulled up to go into the lumber yard.  I know people like to rag on Prius' but they can do a LOT one wouldn't think could be done.  Like hauling eight foot 2 x 4's

5.  Spring is less than a month away. I'm so tired of winter.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Blizzard aftermath

We had lots of sun today.  It was great.  It counteracted the colder temps and the wind.

Just after 7:30 a.m.
After some morning time to myself after my son woke me up we hauled more split wood.  My guy had to clear out a bunch of snow and I had to move a few things over a bit.  It was a "light" day

When my DH was looking for something he noticed something seemed wrong with the garden shed.

It's not good and we have a casualty from the blizzard. The roof on the garden shed is collapsed.  It's bad.

What makes it so much *better* is that there is three to four feet of snow all around it.  While the boys were stacking wood I tried shoveling off the roof. 

I'm too short to shovel off the roof and I couldn't haul of ladder over there.  I had the great idea to use my son's sled to stand on and shovel the snow off the roof.  It worked.  The sled spread my weight out over the snow and I was up high enough to shovel.

When I stood up on the sled and took a look I knew there is now way to salvage this.

It had a LOT of snow up there.  Even with my DH clearing off the roof before the blizzard, this still collapsed.  Not sure what caused it.

Unfortunately this shed is going to take precedence over the wood stove now as we do have some things in storage in there that need to be protected.

This was after getting about half the snow off the roof.  It was crushed like a soda can. 

What really stinks is that these sheds are not cheap.  My DH has already started pricing out what it will cost to build something to replace this.

After morning chores I puttered around the house and we went out to Old Country Buffet for supper and stuffed ourselves silly.

When we came home I went out and hung with the chickens for a bit.  Elvis was chilling on my arm for a little while.  It feels like she's gaining some weight, which makes me happy.

It was also a good egg day. 

I got some spinning in tonite.  I finished off a bobbin and now have two to ply the next time I sit down at the wheel. I practiced my longdraw a bit tonite.

More knitting happened once my spinning was done

I moved my shawl to a bigger circ so I could spread it out a bit when taking photos. Things are cranking along on it. I can't wait to see this finished and blocked.

 Daily 5 of things that made me happy today

1. The babies have entered the ugly duckling phase.  They are now half feathers and half down.

2. This song, I haven't heard it in quite a while.  "Just Breath"

3. We collected a major amount of watts with the solar panels today.  More than 900 watts at times. 

4. The clean smell of oranges. 

5. Homemade hot chocolate. 

Friday, February 21, 2014

We survived the great blizzard of '14

The snow really started coming down last night and while we were sleeping enough snow came down and blanketed us with more than a foot of snow.

I was expecting a torrent of snow for most of yesterday afternoon and evening. The kind of storm that I watched from my window and was thankful I was indoors.

This storm came in all sneaky after dark.  This is just a handful of the photos I took today.

Snow blowing the area in front of the house.

My guy showing how tall the snow pile is.  He's over six feet tall.

View of the house from the end of the driveway.  The plow didn't go by until 11 a.m. or so.

Taken at the end of my driveway.  This is a tree on the neighbor's land. 

One of the trees in the back yard.  The snow in the back yard has to be close to four feet deep in some areas. 

Pine trees in the front yard. I think they look pretty grand. 

My poor car and truck were buried in snow. 

This was when we were walking back from the end of the driveway. As soon as we saw how deep the snow was, there was no point in staying out.  NO ONE on the road was going to be able to leave their house until the plow cleared our road. 

The house with it's new snow blanket on the roof.  My guy had shoveled the day before yesterday.  There's at least a foot of new snow up there.

My son got a kick out of climbing up the big snow hills.  There is a massive one at the end of the driveway. 

 Here I am standing in front of the pile that is in front of the house. There was mild talk about digging a fort in that pile.

 Daily 5 of things that made me happy today

1. That even though my guy had to leave me for a while today, he came back safe and sound.

2. I currently have bread in the oven baking.

3. Knitting *was* done today, but not as much as I would have liked.

4. The ability to work from home during weather like this.

5. My big comfy blue cowl.  It's great for a day like today. 

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Blizzard ?

About that blizzard ...

This is pretty much what I woke up to this morning.  The sun came out for a while and I was beginning to doubt the whole blizzard. 

But then, about 11 a.m. it started snowing.

Then it switched to rain.  Then sleet. Then snow again. It never really blizzard snowed.  Schools *could* have been open.  I could have gone to work.  My guy could have gone to work. 

I'll be heading out in a bit to go to the coop to tuck the chickens in.  Last time my guy went out side we did have snow accumulation, but not as much as was predicted.  Early evening I checked the weather and it changed so that the majority of the snow is going to be overnight.  My son's school has already been cancelled for tomorrow.  He doesn't know yet. 

If all the snow does come over night my guy is going to have a heck of a time getting our driveway plowed and everything taken care of before going to work, if he has work tomorrow.  I'll have another work-at-home day. 

Yesterday our ATV trailer was delivered. Since today was a *bonus* home day my guy took advantage and put the trailer together and him and my son split some wood. They got a pretty good system down. 

My guy loaded the trailer and drove it into the garage, right next to the log splitter. 

Then it was a simple turnaround to grab the logs to put in the log splitter. 

When the log was split, my son grabbed the pieces and put them in the back of the truck.  Then the truck was driven over to the storage area and unloaded. Nice, eh?

At one point today I went out to the coop to check on the chickens and the coop was stinky. When the temps warmed up, the coop thawed out and all the pine shavings released their aroma.  I still haven't figured out no-scoop litter method.  So ... I clean it out when I can when the smell gets a bit ripe.

The chickens were very appreciative. It's been months since I was able to actually scoop out ALL the shavings.

This was Blackie taking a bath in the pine shavings.  She was in chicken heaven. 

Yes, I did get a video of her flapping around.

When I left to get another bale of shavings other chickens decided it was a good time to take a bath in the pine shavings too.  They were all covered in shavings.

Then they noticed that I had snow all over my boots.  What *is* it about chickens and snow?

My sweet Elvis is still at the bottom of the order.  Brewster is nice to her, but my poor girl has to run the gauntlet every time she goes for water or food.  She is still very light. Picking her up is like grabbing a bad of cotton balls.

Sometime between 3 and 4 p.m. my DH did some prep work and cleared some more space out in the front yard.  The snow piles in the front yard are waist high in some areas.

The babies are still doing great.  They nap a lot more and every once in a while I hear random cheeps come out of the tote.  A couple times when I look I see two of them facing off, which is quite amusing to see.  Little Blackie has figured out she can jump up on top of the food jar.  She's so naughty!  I had to move the food jar so she's not hitting the heater lamp. 

The little white/yellow one is getting a black feather on her back. I'm eager to see what her final coloring will be.

The gray one on the left, I'm pretty sure that's Grandma's baby. 

I'd love to get a photo of them sleeping, but they are such light sleepers that they wake up at the tiniest noise. 

My little Blackie, I wouldn't be surprised if she turned out to be a roo. I know it's not a true indication, but Blackie has had a crest almost from birth.  It's very pronounced. 

A little bit of knitting was done today.  Not enough to show progress yet.  I was going to start the dishcloth for the swap I joined but I don't have the color I need. I can picture that little skein of dishcloth cotton but I don't remember using it.  As soon as I can drive to down I'll be hitting up walmart for that particular color.

 Daily 5 of things that made me happy today

1. Having the day with my boys

2. That I don't have a mullet. (Watching 6teen)

3.  Sleeping in just a bit today.

4. My guy did some rejiggering with the woodstove piping and we will be able to return some stuff. Yay!

5. Hearing the babies do their little "mock battles"