Monday, November 26, 2012


Thankful for my family, of course. My husband who tries so hard to make me happy. My dogs who always want under the blankets. My health. Our house.Tofurky and pumpkin cheesecake from Costco. This really warm weather. (See November 2010 for comparison)
pretty fall colors on our walk to the river
makeshift kitchen inside and out - we're working on making this process more cook-friendly
taking walks midday helps adjusting to much less daylight 
stragglers gonna straggle
here comes the sun

Ophelia has come to live with us. She doesn't get along with my parents' new indoor cat, Skritch, so we put a food dish at our house, she has a little cat bed on the porch for daytime and she spends nights inside with us. Which is quite a challenge for Mia! And now another cat, Shadow, is lining up for the chow line at our house, too. Moochers!

Thankful there's not snow and ice covering the leaves. The hazelnut leaves are really cool and I've never really noticed them before. Leathery, but light. It's weird to be raking leaves in late November, but I was glad to since I needed them for the compost pile.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Prairie Trippin'

We were getting a serious case of cabin fever last week so we decided to go thrifting on Saturday. There's only one thrift store here (we pick it sporadically) and one antique store, but up on the prairie there are many more places to find goodies.  
Also it gave me a chance to practice shooting out the passenger window, a technique that really started to appeal to me on our 10th anniversary road trip last year. I like looking ahead for things that might make a good photo and then trying to guess at what angle/speed/distance the composition will work. 
Plus Keith doesn't like to stop every half-mile.
I did make Keith stop a couple of times - for this Shell station in Craigmont (and also the Fire Department there).

We found a bunch of small things to buy (brass hooks, etc.) and a great deal on records. I walked out of one store with 9 records (because I got tired of digging through the stacks) and the most expensive one was a Smokey Robinson and the Miracles LP, $3. Also scored Supertramp, Blondie, Best of Sam Cooke, Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass, Dwight Yoakam, Radio Active and the Baja Marimba Band.
I also found a wire rack for records and now the record player has its very own table (instead of taking up valuable counter space like it did all summer) and the records are just below it. It's a great feeling to just open it up and spin a record and rock out.
A couple changes we made over the weekend really changed how our house feels, it's efficiency and spatial energy - one is moving the record player to a dedicated space - and that table was formerly my bedside table.
But my new bedside table is even better! Keith had picked an old Singer sewing machine base from somewhere over the past year or two and it was sitting way back in the car shed collecting dust. I wiped it down and gave it a coat or bright red paint, we put the (warped and therefore not useful) cutting board that used to fit over the sink and made that the top. Much more room for books, etc.!
My old clock radio (10+ years old, likely) was on its last leg due to age and repeated drops to the floor, so I was in the market for an old-timey alarm clock when we thrifting and found this beauty for $2! There's no radio, just a clock and alarm that sounds like this. There is a snooze button but you don't want to hear that alarm more than once.
We're cooking ALL of our meals at our house now, which is awesome. If not dark and a little chilly. But we're fuerte!
Brown is loving squirrel season. Or hating it, I can't tell.
This little beggar just happens to be around whenever we're at the stove.
On our walk down to the river on Sunday we saw some people fishing. The river is gorgeous this time of year.

Okay, time for a composting toilet update.
Keith and I agreed we should take turns dumping the toilet. And although he was very chivalrous and offered to take my turn last week, I told him we should stick to the original agreement. Surprisingly, it wasn't that bad. I was wearing gloves obviously and breathing through my mouth (just in case) and it went fine. 
It's not my favorite thing to do, but it wasn't scary or even all that gross (no grosser than changing a baby's diaper and I luckily will never do that) and I think next time it will go even better since I will know what to expect. After turning the bucket upside down into the compost pile, I used dry sawdust to scrub/wipe out the inside of the bucket (which really came pretty clean when I dumped it). Then cover everything with the cherry tree leaves, put some dry sawdust in the bottom of the bucket and start all over again. I will only have to empty it about every 20 days or so anyway, which I can totally handle.
And to end on a nicer note, here's a shot of the view from the toilet. The window is coated in some kind of material so people can't see in even when the leaves drop off the trees. And I just noticed we can see our compost pile from the toilet! The flooring is all in and now the bathroom looks like this.
flooring in, tub in