primsong: (ship)
My friend and I are headed out for an Alaskan cruise this next weekend, a modest one-week adventure heading north - it's more about finding out what a cruise is like than about the destination.  Should be interesting, I've never been further than Victoria BC.  She'd never been on a train, we're taking the leg to Seattle that way for a bonus - and that way I don't have to worry about my car sitting there in Seattle for a week.  Shoestring budget means so not much excursion fanciness for us, and we'll just use the common buffet for food but I think it'll be worth the experience.  Basic cabin, all we could afford was a porthole that looks out at a lifeboat but that's ok, we can always go out on deck to see stuff.

If this goes well, maybe we can start saving up for a longer one somewhere a little further away!
primsong: (zucchini)
It's baaack - my own zucchini / marrow plants died, which is typical for this yard, the only place I've ever lived that they don't just spring out of the ground if you accidentally drop a seed (which did indeed happen at my previous home), but never fear!  The world is awash in helpful people who are VERY happy to give you a zucchini. ("Would you like more? I have more!")  My friend had a total stranger timidly ask if she might like some zucchini and produced a modest bag full when the answer was "Sure!"  My neighbor just gave me a baseball-bat of a one and I turned it into 7 loaves of chocolate chip zucchini bread for the freezer, but it was only on the agreement that she would come take some of my apples which she did.  Good ol' barter the old fashioned way.

The old joke about not leaving your car unlocked in summer because someone will fill it with zucchini is believable at this time of year - spotted a box of them along our street yesterday with several generous oblongs and a big FREE sign.  Would that all good things should come in such abundance!
primsong: (jo keys)
Opened up my mailbox and there were my new glasses!  They came with a cleaning cloth, a little glasses repair tool and a couple extra screws which is a nice touch - and best of all, they work!  Just had to adjust the nose pads slightly, but that's easy enough, so nice to have new eyeballs without having to spend so blinkin' much for a change.  :-)

Also survived selling drinks at the Fair, golly what an endless river of thirsty people, we were completely bushed but we did it - though my feet are still recovering.  

Tonight my dance group is teaching some basic Greek dance to the local highschool football players, their coach thinks it makes them move together better and pay attention to their feet, there's supposed to be 120 of them (!)  so it's good we have about 10 dancers, we can each take a column of them that way.  Should be fun.

Onward we go, here comes August!
primsong: (hamster smooch)
Time for the Washington County Fair once again, which in my case means working my tail off at the beverage booths there, it's one of our main fundraisers for our preschool - last year it was SO HOT and the lady who sells those little neck things full of water beads so you can soak them in water and tie them around your neck was doing hopping business - I still have mine from last year but I expect she'll be doing well again.  Supposed to be around 90, bleah...!  I'm sure we'll be selling a lot of water.   Took my feet forever to recover after last year so I didn't sign up for quite as much this round - trick is to not give in when the inevitable "but we NEED you" comes by, will see how I do, I'm a softie.

Hope I get either the food court (it has shade!) or the barn one (it has nice farm people and animals!). 
primsong: (starry sky)
When Starflower moved out this past fall I thought "Oh boy, her bedroom has the best windows, maybe I can make a little corner for Art and Arting and stuff!"
Then hubby filled it up with his whatnot instead.  Boxes of...??  Partially functioning computer stuff, audio recording stuff, barbershop costumes on a rack, suitcases, etc. etc.... and being the sort that is easily dissuaded from stuff that only benefits me personally, I let it go.

This week I rolled up my figurative sleeves, went in there and did some serious rearranging and stacking.  Put up a card table near the windows, set out all my watercolor supplies.  Did three pieces of amateur Art and left them there to dry.  This morning I heard my hubby tell my son "Could you close the windows in the studio? I'm turning on the A/C." 

I ran that back in my head with great satisfaction - "Close the windows in the STUDIO...."  Yeeee!
^_^
primsong: (mouse gape)
Asked a friend if she'd like some apples.  She said "Yes! I'd like 10 please.  If you have enough."
Look up at my Apples, current Apple Level 200 trees.
"Right. Ten apples."

apple plumes

primsong: (pears)
My trees are utterly loaded down with apples this year, the bees did a good job! 

Branches are hanging low with so much fruit.  I gathered up four buckets full and am in the process of making them into applesauce, the kitchen smells fabulous and all my big pots are full of steaming sauce.  I'll freeze it once it cools down and then work on spicing and cooking it down for apple butter another day so it isn't too much of a job all at once.  Only one jar of apple butter left from last time, didn't realize it's been six years but sure enough that's the date on that last jar.  Glad it keeps.

Wish you guys were closer, I'd totally be asking my flist if they'd like to come pick apples otherwise!
primsong: (old school)
Garage sale went great - loads of stuff, a plentious bounty of customers and great weather!  Yay!  Bought one thing there, someone had a Zoombox projector for cheap so I got it to play around with. 

Plays a dvd ok, good sound but dim level of bulb so you really have to have the room dark for it to work - the dim and grainy effect was an inspiration so I fetched the old roll-up projector screen I had as a castoff of a school and set it on its tripod in the living room.  It's a late 40s-early 50s vintage and even silver instead of white! 

As soon as it was dark, we watched a great Buster Keaton silent film on the silver screen with popcorn.  Perfect. 

All it needs now is a recording of the ticky-ticky sound that the old 8mm projectors made.  Sense-surround!
primsong: (sign waffles)
Was working at the church and noticed a steady sprinkle of people coming through our parking lot and moseying around the front, asked one girl lounging on her bicycle if we were a Pokemon-Go stop - "Yep!" she said happily tapping at her phone. 

One person came up and took a photo of our stained glass for their Instagram.  Two guys came by walking a dog and stopped for a bit to tap at their phones.  Various people hanging out in their cars trying to look casual about it.  Heh.
primsong: Mr. Morton (morton)
The church parking lot sale I'm organizing is this Saturday, so I'm slowly migrating my massive mound of whatnot to the church building as I come and go, mostly squirreling it into my library so it isn't too visible beforehand.  Looks like I'll have maybe 7 people selling which isn't as many as I hoped for but at least I'm not out there by myself.

Just have to do the craigslist ads and finish up the signs... I taped old christmas tinsel to them so they sparkle in the sun to catch people's eyes, maybe I'll toss in some cheap happy face balloons as well to add some motion and color.  It's a bit of work, but it will be SO nice to have it done!    Also if we do end up moving because of the whole jobs thing I've gotten to do the first round of junk-removal with good weather.
primsong: (snood)
Well, I gave ordering glasses online a try - prescription in hand, it still took forever to figure out how all the measurements on the glasses themselves go but it really was quite a lot cheaper.

First set I got I found out why it would have been worth it to pay more for the fancy thinner lenses.  These are pretty heavy, I've been spoiled by my very lightweight ones and forgot how heavy "regular" lenses are. :-/  Also found out I need to pay attention to how long the earpieces are and whether they are adjustable.  The prescription is just fine, for that I'm thankful.

Tried again today, reaaallly hoping this next set works better for comfort, and I can always use the "old" heavy ones as backup specs.  The upside is even with now inadvertantly having to order TWO glasses, I'm still paying less than I would have for just one at a regular shop.  Just hope I don't have to go around a third time on this learning curve!
primsong: Mr. Morton (morton)
Finished re-staining both the back and front decks, including steps and railing.  Added new spiffy no-slip strips to the steps and re-painted the railing so it's a slightly metallic chocolate brown instead of weird faded chipped peach and rust color.  My guess is about 50 years ago when the house was built that railing probably was painted to match the cedar siding but time has not been kind to it.  Much, much nicer now.

Between all that and the new mulch, the place is looking a bit jazzed up, I'm quite pleased.

My son is moving back in tomorrow, looks like he may be able to informally apprentice with our church custodian to learn custodial stuff, then hopefully get his foot in the door with the custodial company he works for before summer is out.  Here's hoping!  He's got to get started somehow and he hasn't had any callbacks on anything legitimate yet.  Not that he's looking forward to helping strip the wax off the gym floor - the current project at hand - but at least he's still game to do what needs doing.
primsong: (squirrel)
Went out to set a sprinkler in my flower bed and found a squirrel laying there in the hot sun. I thought it was dead and went to get a paper towel to transport the body with but when I came back it flailed around weakly and flipped over. "Oh no, you're not dead...yet."

Got a flat shovel and used it as a squirrel stretcher to take the unresisting patient to a shady spot under the vine maples, screened it off with a small bench tipped over to make a little hospice courtyard where my old cat ambling by wouldn't immediately see it. It lay there looking miserable and hot. Felt very helpless and inept as a nurse.

I dribbled a little water from the nearby birdbath from my fingertips and the squirrel eagerly took in every drop I managed to land near her mouth, little pink tongue flicking in and out. She sucked the water that had fallen on her foreleg. Fetching a dropper of clean water, I came back and she drank from the dropper desperately, then fell back and rearranged her paws to make a pillow under her head, half closing her eyes. I made a loose dome of dry grasses over her to conceal and comfort then left her there to rest with a blueberry and a few crumbles of nuts near her nose.

I presumed it was a squirrel hospice rather than a hospital. My Pi-cat came by and just sat on the edge of the bench and idly watched for a while then wandered off - glad she's not as young as she once was, she used to catch and eat them. Later on I went to presumably gather the body, but found the squirrel had gone! No sign of violence, she simply gathered her wits and slipped away.

It's a small thing, but I am grateful for small life.
primsong: (one hat)
This past week has been just warm enough that we've taken to hiding in the cool basement level a bit, ended up using the time to discover:

Hoodwinked. I totally did not see that one coming, the animation was so bad I was just "wut" at first but my son insisted it was worth the watching. Now I want to buy a copy if only to run the goat on repeat. Brilliant dialogue and a even a hat-tip to The Thin Man. X-D

Hoodwinked 2: Hood vs. Evil. A complete disappointment after the brilliance of the first one. We even fast-forwarded part of it. Blah.

Silver Spoon (Gin no Saji) - Japanese animated show based on a manga that is still in process so there's only 2 short seasons (Netflix rolled them into one). AAAAAA - totally loved this one...!! Writing is top notch, same author as Full Metal Alchemist. Essentially a city boy ends up at an agricultural high school in the country where he has to deal with everything from raising a pig to butcher ("Pork Bowl" is adorable) to taking on work at a dairy farm. Series takes him all the way through his first year there. *Great* characters, seriously, check this one out! Only problem with it is there isn't any more (yet). It has English subs, not dubbed over.
(also, there's a live action movie of the same tale - I'd go with the animated one!)
primsong: (dalek tipping)
Noted that one of my knees kept wanting to slip out of place when I was kneeling so it made it kind of borderline impossible to get back up. Decided a 'trick knee' was not a good idea when I still have (hopefully) many years to bobble around in this body yet to go.

Everyone raise a toast to the internet, by which I was able to glean from someone who paid a fancy therapist what to do to help it *without* having to pay a fancy therapist.

Turns out the bands that stabilize my knees were weak because I've been favoring that leg for years due to foot issues. Now that I have inserts and such the foot thing is better but this was a bit of fallout from that. Stand on one leg and balance - count to 30. Stand on the other and do the same thing. The goal is to get to where you can balance for 30 seconds solid and steady.

My knee is much better already! ^_^ Thought I'd share it, since it's so simple. I was a real humdinger of a wobbler on that side at first, I had no idea I was compensating with the stronger leg til I did that.
primsong: (pears)
One thing about living where I do is the summer is absolutely filled with berries. We could rename it Berryland and it wouldn't be far from the truth!

Picked some strawberries, blueberries are coming in - there's kotata, boysen, marion and tay berries ready to go as well as raspberries in both red and golden. Yum yum. My childhood memories of picking berries and being paid for by the flat are shared by many here.

*squirts whipped cream on blueberry and banana pie*

An artist friend was assigned painting a picture of what summer is to her. She painted a blue sky literally raining berries.

My apple and plum trees are absolutely loaded with fruit for later on as well, hopefully they won't get so fried that they start dropping the green ones because I want to make apple butter this year.

Splink!

Jun. 21st, 2016 04:38 pm
primsong: (threejo bessie)
We sadly lost Millie the Millet Muncher a couple weeks ago, and the remaining two budgies were morose without her, so I checked with a local bird rescue lady and she had some to look at. We picked out a happy, bouncy little fellow and he's been just an absolute joy. Rhubarb and Treacle-cake are getting along with him just fine. He's bright neon yellow on the back and bright neon green on the front.

His name is Splink. Hee hee.

primsong: Scan from an old Dr. Who magazine (find tardis win game)
Hubby asked me to look for a computer bag for him when I was at the Goodwill jumble bins, so I snagged a couple likely looking ones for not much (everything there is by the pound). They sat in the living room a couple weeks til he got around to looking them over to see if one would fit his laptop. Opened up the side compartment on one and... yikes! Scads of very personal papers! Like someone was getting ready to buy a house or something, bank info, personal records, etc. 0.0

Must have been stolen and the laptop grabbed then the bag dumped. Looked neat and untouched, there was even a new b-day card and a pack of gum. Horrified, I riffled through looking for a phone number and left a message. Phone rang back in minutes with a young man VERY relieved. He was on his way home from work, so I gave him our address and when he pulled up I held it up for him to see. Gave him the bag along w some roses and lavender from our yard for his wife, he gave me a hug and couldn't stop saying how grateful he was... they came back a couple days later with a thank you gift and introduced their adorable baby while they were at it. Turns out they live on our street!

So very grateful that God kept their stuff safe and got it back to them. Nice to be able to be a part of that. ^_^
primsong: (illumination)
Hmm - combo of hubby out of work and kids all prepping to get on their own, kind of feels like a transition in the making. I can feel my deeper roots pulling up, the edges of my routine becoming just a wee, teensy bit blurry. We'd thought of downsizing our home in about five years, perhaps it will simply be moved up the timeline a bit.

Started fixing up my church library to slowly get it up to snuff for eventual handoff, also re-painting the church parking lot for maybe my last time as I only re-do it every 3-4 years.

Having a garage sale in July too, which is a good start in that whole process. Sort of like drawing a comb over my household to get out the tangles, amazing the things I have and don't need anymore (or never really needed in the first place). I'll probably be maundering about that here from time to time over the next couple years. If I must move, a slow and gentle drifting from the dock and an amble down the river is always preferred to a tsunami.
primsong: (percy duh)
Continuing in my quest to get the blinds in this house functional again, I finally found a way to fix the top of a hanging vertical blind slat when the itty-bitty piece of plastic that holds the thing up snaps off. A "MacGyverisms" site showed how you can just tape a big paperclip on the back of it and punch a hole in the tape - Bam! It gives the carrier something to grab onto and the blind slat is back in place. I had three slats broken like that, they're lookin' good now. Golly, that was easy!

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