Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Weekend Write Up

Last weekend was a pretty darn good one. On Saturday, it was a) not raining and b) not supposed to rain for 24 hours, so therefore I was able to work on re-staining our hot tub and outdoor table. They hadn't been stained in forever and were beginning to look horrendous; they certainly look better now! I finished them this afternoon and yes, it was nice to actually finish a project! So many times in life it seems like I have the absolute best intention of finishing something right away and then the last 10% drags on forever....

Later that day I went to a farewell party for a dear friend, Laura. She has the audacity to be moving to Hawaii next week and I"m going to miss her. Lots. Hopefully though, just maybe, a visit might happen. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. Well, not really, just praying about it. :) I did get to spend the night and visit with her and her sister so that was some consolation. Every time we get together like this we always lament that it will never be the same next time, and then well, it is. Somehow we just don't seem to change. Or maybe we're just boring.

 Sunday we had glorious weather once again. After church, we headed over to a friends house for a barbecue. This place happens to be a sentimental gathering place from my childhood, well, teenage hood, and whenever we gathered there for civil war reenactments it was always, without fail, roasting. And yes, there's nothing "funner" than donning accurate 19th century clothing in 90 degree heat. But we were young then and it was all an adventure! This time, there were no hoopskirts to be seen and it wasn't as warm as it could've been then, but it was very pleasant. And I learned how to play Farkle. Also, my dear friend had her baby, so the whole day was good!

Friday, July 22, 2011

7 Quick Takes

1. Tyler and I took the boys swimming at the Canby pool today. The boys had been hankering to go there for a while as it features a real live diving board but we usually end up going to the Molalla pool as it's a smidgen closer and cheaper.  I grew up doing swim lessons at this pool and I hadn't been back for quite a while. Let's just say that it was way smaller than I remember it! Although the diving board was as awesome as ever.

2. While in Canby, I actually stopped at a garage sale and even bought something. I might be at 5 purchases now from garage sales.

3. I'm actually reading a book. Slowly, but surely! What I'm really enjoying is being able to read the Bible a little bit at a time. I've missed that.

4. I just got back from a date night with my parents. They invited me to come along for drinks at the local golf course. They have a nice bar/restaurant set up and since it's so close, it's easy to slip away for an hour. We sat out side on the patio, admired the sunset and had delicious strawberry shortcake. Plus, we know the family that runs the golf course, so it was fun to run into the parents.

5. During the evening, I determined that growing up in a golf course/restaurant setting would be pretty cool.

6. My dear friend is now pregnant at 42 weeks. Praying she'll have that baby soon!

7. I read today that this year Portland experienced the second wettest spring in 117 years and that we've had 7 days above 80 degrees so far. Seattle has had 70 minutes. Poor Seattle.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Puttering & Tasmania

This afternoon mostly consisted mostly of puttering outside. I'm into puttering right now. The word (I like saying it) and the action. Usually I'm faster than puttering, but with my shoulders and neck still recovering from moving hay, I'm puttering.  Today I focused on fixing some panels on the hot tub so it can get stained and sanding the back door so it can get painted. I've been itching to get to these projects for the last two weeks but it wouldn't stop raining long enough! The word puttering never fails to remind me of Patrick McManuses chapter on puttering.

This evening some awesome guys from our church came and helped prep the yard for The Party. Pretty nice of them. I swear our life revolves around the garden until The Party so it's a relief to have extra help. :)

I think I'm kind of digging this random items style of writing.

I came accros this website today about Tasmania Parks (picture from website). After looking at it and Wikipedia I now want to visit Tasmania. I love how the photo above says, "Winter Wonders - Rug up and step outside!" English never fails to amuse me.

I also clicked for the first time on a Pandora ad. Of all things, for these. I've never paid much attention to rings... they always seem to look the same, but these actually looked like they took some serious skillz.

And I discovered one of my new favorite all time blogs. It's called Scouting NY. I've always thought that location scouting for movies sounded intriguing but after reading this blog I think it's moved into my top five of favorite jobs. Number one being Queen. Haha, not really.  Basically scouting sounds kind of like being a real estate agent but you don't have the pressure to sell anything. I also love New York City so it's a double plus.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Parties and figs

So I just got back from a fantastic party and now I'm not feeling sleepy one bit. I've only just really started drinking alcohol regularly {edited to add: like, um, at the most, maybe one drink once a week} (and very moderately for anyone concerned reading this!) and I'm not sure if it winds me up or makes me sleepy. Right now, I'm casually browsing Mr. Boston while I brush my teeth to get an idea of what drinks I might like to try and just to try and wrap my head around what is in the commonest drinks.

I'm also in the middle of revamping my blog design. Sometimes there's a moment when you just realize "This has to change. Now."

After the party I came home and made some cranberry jelly (random, I know) and was glancing though the recipe descriptions in Joy of Cooking and I discovered that the deliciousness of  Northern Africa figs was Cato's clinching argument for invasion. Who knew that the cookbook could also be full of history lessons?

I also read tonight about spiders legs and how they avoid sticking to their own web.

I'm also still finding it fascinating that the amazing Jen of Conversion Diary started following me on Pinterest. I've been lurking on her blog for years so it makes the web seem all of a sudden a little smaller. And I'm feeling guilty that I've never commented on her blog before. I've just never figured out much of a groove for commenting on people's blogs unless I know them. Or maybe I'll stew on the post for a couple of days on a post and then come up with a comment but by then it feels too late...

The weather's just been freezing here. Our garden looks beautiful because the grass is still all green and our flowers are late, but man, would it just stop raining?! I know we are averaging about 10 degrees cooler than normal and I was talking to a friend in Sacramento and it sounds like they are about 15 degrees cooler. Crazy. Yesterday, I even spotted on lone rhododendron flower. They were supposed to be done flowering 6 weeks ago.

I realized today that I'm over 1/5 of the way done listening to War & Peace. I have a hard time listening to the average book on tape as it seems so inefficient, but War & Peace is so big to begin with, and I'm listening to it while I'm doing vision therapy, so it's all okay. I know I would be butchering the names in my head if I read it normally.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Geeking out over the weather

The other day while arguing with a sibling about the climate of South Korea I discovered the Koppen-Geiger Climate Classifcation system. Even if you are only a moderate weather fanatic, like me, this is beyond awesome.

Also, apparently, the northwest is pretty unusual in it's designation. We are classified as a Csb climate or a dry summer subtropical area. The only other areas in the world that share our climate are parts of Chile and Argentina and Northern Spain and Portugal.

Now I've just got to figure out where my favorite climate is and I'm off.

Weather & climate plays such an interesting role in world history that I'm still geeking out about it. I think I need to buy a book about it. :) And talking about geeks, I came across this awesome Geek Flow Chart on Pinterest the other day.

I just made this Ginger Syrup for Ginger Ale tonight. My first sample drink was a little strong because I think I let it boil down to long, so it tasted more similar to what I think of as Ginger Beer instead of Ginger Ale, but man, it was easy. And now we have more candied ginger than I can shake a stick at.

I'm also exploring Google+. I'm not quite sure what to think of it. And this week I've been trying out tweeting more seriously. Not sure if Twitter's a good influence for me or not. I mostly just think of snarky things I want to say.

Well, Andrew's garlic bread is "smelling" me that it's time to eat, so over and out.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Mowing, strawberries and singleness

I mowed with a walk behind lawn mower for the first time. I know, big deal, eh? We've had a riding lawn mower since I was nine, so I'm sure at one point I "helped" someone mow when I was younger, or I may have helped mow a grandparent's yard at some point, but I don't remember, so it doesn't count. :) Our riding lawn mower died a month ago and after much family conferencing, we decided to try and get away without one for a while. It mows better but it definitely takes more time. And yes, the phrase that kept running through my head as I mowed was "I am a woman, hear me MOW..." Cheesy, I know.

What's humorous to me about this whole situation is that up 'til now, mowing has been regarded as a male only sport in our family. My allergies were always too bad to do it or I had more important things to do. ; ) But now that I can't weed for very long, the roles are getting reversed. The boys can weed and I can mow. And I had never realized just how fun it could be. I"m definitely indebted to the boys for all the weeding they're doing! Also, when I'm mowing the orchard (way harder than lawn), it makes for an awesome workout.

I love rice krispies with strawberries before bed :)

It's strawberry season and they're pretty amazing this year.
So far, we've just been eating them plain, but I think jam is in the near future.

This morning I did vision therapy outside because it was so nice. I've decided that doing vision therapy outside is about 200% nicer than doing it inside. This is also a pretty easy week, hence the blogging. ;) I've been listening to War and Peace which also makes it go faster.

And tonight I came across two good articles on singleness from both perspectives on the amazing and ever insightful blog Practical Theology for Women. The guys perspective was especially fascinating to me, as it wasn't a perspective I'd heard before.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Four square & gardening

So it's summer here! Well, kind of. Hopefully I didn't just jinx it.
I'm afraid the peas and lettuce will be dying off, but that means that one day we might just get a tomato. It's been such a cool summer so far that we will be doing good to get any. ;)

This evening just felt so summery as I performed the yearly ritual of setting up the vegetable garden sprinkler. It reminds me of the my first vegetable garden when I discovered that I actually liked gardening and that it could consists of more than just weeding. It would've been the summer that Mom was pregnant with Daniel. She declared that there would be no vegetable garden and I decided that I was wiling to do what it took to have one. I think she then helped me convince dad to buy me my first "power tool", a Mantis rototiller.

Well, dang-nabit, my eyes are getting tired, so I've got to quit, but I will close by saying that fourth of July was pretty awesome this year. Foursquare was one of the highlights strangely enough. I'm guessing the last time I played foursquare in a real box was in fourth grade... I know I remember playing it in first grade in California during recess. That was probably when I was learning it! Which was, ahem, quite a while ago.. . ;)

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Buckeroo and other miscellany

At the buckeroo

I almost got this posted on Saturday...

So I'm still in the throes of buying a computer. I love the laptop I got from Dell except for the not-so -lovely pixel-y lines running up and down the screen. Makes it looked textured, which is nice for paper but not on your screen!

In other news, we went to the Buckeroo last night which is always fun. I love events where you get to peak into other "worlds" out there. Especially worlds that could've been fun to have grown up in.

Also this week we got asked to host a rock/hip hop music festival. We turned them down as it wasn't exactly family friendly music and they wanted to play music until 5am. We didn't want our neighbors to hate us! It made us think it would be fun to do some sort of festival someday. A couple of weeks ago I had read all about the Bonarroo concert in Kentucky and decided it would be fun to do something like that one day. It never occurred to me that it could be something we could do on our farm (smaller scale of course!) ;)