Sunday, December 08, 2019


Cardinal perched in a frost lit tree, sun shining everything even though it has yet to pass the horizon. Like a Christmas postcard only....


Liz says below zero. I forgot to check before I went outside. The boss has a bum knee, so I thought to take some of the work off him and went out to tend the stove. Alas, it was woodless with few coals still going so it was a big job. And a long job too. The wood is oak and not the driest, although  lot drier than some we have attempted to burn. Glad he got a load of softwood in but even that doesn't really want to light today.

So beautiful out there though. Clear, frigid, but quiet, with every tree frost-rimed and the birds as friendly as a flock of chickens. I think they know who comes outside with scoops of tasty seeds each day.

Andiron cat is not amused......

Now if only we could get that darned stove cooking again. 

If he ever escapes his iron exoskeleton he will GET the bird that did that


Wednesday, December 04, 2019

Well that was Accidental

When you live with someone who is five, there are things around, pretty much all the time. They tend to land wherever they are dropped....All kinds of things from Barbies and toy horses to stray socks and cowboy boots.

My morning routine includes coffee, medicine, and walking dogs (before coffee). And picking up things. Oh, and did I mention coffee?

There has been, since Thanksgiving, an ongoing battle for kitchen table in Grandma wants it cleared off and will add that task to the other morning stuff. That bare, red-gold plank surface is so appealing...

Today there was a sort of an elf figure on the table by my meager pile of stuff. Ugh.

I moved it over to the finial on the back of Liz's chair...tied her little hands together around the knob and went about my business. It's a family culture thing anyhow, Becky and I moving Peggy's toys into funny places if she leaves them lying around. There is still a little cowboy in the ornamental corn on the porch that she hasn't noticed yet. Found him out in the yard last fall.

Aunt Lisa, this is the picture you took the other day
when you were trying out the camera....

This time however, little miss morning grumpy pants went to the kitchen for breakfast and went wild with joy.

"She's magic! She's real! She's real!"

She ran through the house telling everyone how her elf moved and was magic...

"And don't touch her! Her magic will go away if you touch her!"

Who knew?

A total, if serendipitous accident.

Anyhow, I guess I have another early morning job......

The McDonald's Alps

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving

Remember Lucy?
She was proof that you can love a turkey,
no matter how exasperating

To all my dear friends and family. Our crew is all here today with plans for carrying forth time-honored traditions, while making new ones as well.  There is much for which to be thankful indeed.

Saw this critter along a road during a birding adventure.
Wonder what his story is.....

Not surprisingly many of these traditions involve White-tailed Deer, which will be featured as sausage for the stuffing, and quarry in the field. Alan and Amber made the sausage, which I can attest is amazing.

What with all the cooking and deer hunting that is projected to take place, I will leave you with this interesting article from Alex at

Thanksgiving, the Forgotten History. 

To be human is to be political on some level, whether we admit it or not. And even the birds have opinions.

Friday, November 22, 2019

What do YOU remember?

We were in class
when the teacher rushed out of the room and vanished.

It was a lady teacher, but I don't remember her name.

She did not return and I suppose at first we were all a little rowdy. 6th grade.... kids at that age rarely miss a chance to make some noise, pass a few notes, giggle a little bit and just be silly.

 I expect that at some point the running feet and sobbing in the halls and the electric atmosphere of shock and horror got through to us little hellions though. I don't think the teacher ever came back. I don't quite remember, even though I can picture clearly just where my desk was situated and which side of the hall the room was on and where the door was..

And I remember the announcement coming over the PA system.

About what had happened. Oh, my God, NO! It couldn't be.

But it was.

School dismissed.

Go home to a different world than the one you left that morning when you left behind the dregs of cold cereal to make the bus.

I remember going home that day, turning on the TV, and sitting in the family room, which is now my parents's office, and watching the rest of the day instead of going out to play.

I don't remember much else though.

After all it was 56 years ago.

And I will bet every single one of you who was alive then and old enough to be aware of your world remembers exactly where you were and what you were doing the day President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas and the world was never the same again ever.

If you see this guy today.....

Wish him an amazing and memorable birthday.

He is such a wonderful dad, a great brother, a sweet, kind, and generous person, and all around good man....

We love you, Scott. Happy Birthday!