Wednesday, October 29, 2008

EEEK! Post spooky

Downside up, upside down! KC looks like a
strangely put together person!
Well, I started out with the greatest of intentions, and this last 10-12 days I've really fallen off the writing wagon, haven't I?

Maybe my life is just kinda boring. It's okay that it's boring. It is boring to read about, but not boring to live, if you know what I mean. Life is full and busy and crazy with the kids. With the sudden onset of much cooler weather, the kids and Lee have not gotten to the local park after dinner, thus the chaos and pandemonium that is burned off there, explodes in my house! This does not make for interesting posts, unless you like hearing a 4 yo talking about butts, farts or burping, and an almost 2 yo yelling NO NO YES YES and spitting at her brother. The older brothers either stoically ignore the two younglings, or, worse, they join in. Ah, the strange after supper conversations that happen between the living room and the kitchen when the parents are out of sight, but not out of earshot!!

But as I made dinner tonight, a vegetarian faux beef stew, I realized that FRIDAY is Halloween,

and that means Post spooky ends...and I've been sooooo inconsistant. Sorry all! I've been trying to squeeze out time to read everyone's posts, usually Sunday evenings, but this week I fell behind. Promise I'll catch up when we get our "extra" hour back when DST ends Sat. Between that hour, and the fact that I won't be getting to our UU church much this year either, I'll have more time to catch up. Lissa just hated being in the nursery, and got so freaked out this past week that I was going to put her there that she threw herself full throttle onto the floor,banging her head and adding to the shreiks of fear (oh, yeah, it was fear in that wee voice) were the shreeeeeeks from banging onto the floor that hard. Well, I'm not going to put her through that again. Two weeks is enough. I dunno what happened there, but I'm not going to make her fearful over it. We two will stay home and I'll get caught up on house chores, and SEWING, and maybe even some knitting! With the forthcoming holidays, extra time is a wonderful boon.
Tomorrow I'm going to post before and after pix of the trees. We had wicked winds these last two days, and my trees are just about stripped bare. Yay for raking, but, oh it was such a beautiful year for the color. I'm going to miss that golden glow through my windows, and now I really, really need to get my insulated curtains finished.
Blessed be!

Friday, October 24, 2008


This was my perspective while lying in my
camp chair at the end of August. It was lovely,
warm, sunny. Lee and kids were at the beach,
I was back at camp with the dog, as dogs are
not allowed at the beach until after 4 p.m. or
something weird like that...ahhhh, peace,
quiet, ......

Oh, there's my footsies...and the camp stove.
Do I want a cuppa?......

Naw, I'll just doze here awhile....

Yeah. So I was puttering around earlier this
evening, kinda planning out the weekend...
I mean T G I F for sure this week...busy every
day, no down time, just on the go from 530 a.m
until 11 pm...I'm just beat. And tomorrow I work
out of the house, but, NO ALARM CLOCK!!!
The one day I can sleep until 7!! Sometimes I
get up earlier, but Saturday, my clock is
sleeping in too!
Anyway, that's off the subject. I was looking at
the calendar for the weekend and the upcoming
week, another busy one, with mucho DR.
appointments. Rob has a glaucoma check up
that is a "long" appointment where they dialate
his eyes and take a ton of readings to check
progression on Tuesday, and then he, Lee, and
his older brother all have flu shots in the afternoon.
The littles and I have ours the day before. There are
other things, like I have to work extra hours Thurs.
and Friday. Bummer, I have to work on Halloween.
But I do get to dress up, as we host the party for the
kids who live at the apartment complex where I work
in the clubhouse. It's a gathering area for the kids
and the party is always exhausting! Then I realized..
That means next Saturday is the first day of NOVEMBER!
I mean, wasn't I just laying in that lawn chair and
taking pix of my feet for this blog???? Wha?
Where? Where has the time gone? And yet, I know
the days have been full. We have had morning walks
together, the kids and I. Music Movement classes
for the littles in Worcester. Trips here and there.
Work. Gardening. Canning. Cooking and freezing.
Yardwork, final camping trips, reading books, painting
Okay, I guess all of that can't fit in one or two days.
So the time has passed, well spent.
No days of lolling about, to be sure. We're not "lolling" people,
but we're not overprogrammed, either.
November. Wow.
Feel that wheel spin, much?!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The last canning of the year...

First, the crew assembles to pick the last
apples of the season

Oh, look at that view! Orchard is to the left,
right and behind us too! The community garden
is behind us as well.

All hands to apple picking! Lissa LOVES picking
apples. Too bad I was shooting against what little
light we had so you can't see the gi-normeous
grin on her face!

Older brother hates the smell of apples. He doesn't
like to pick apples. But these Suncrisp apples
have next to no smell at all and soon...

KC gets in the act too! Rob climbed up a tree
to retrieve a really HUGE apple, and He was
so proud to have overcome his fear of heights
to get it.
Spent all day today making apple pie filling
(and a fresh apple pie, too) from all the apples
we picked yesterday. I made 6 quarts this a.m.
and 9 this afternoon. Once the timer goes off
the canner will go down cellar for the season.
I'm very tired, but it's a "good" tired! Now we
can enjoy apple treats all winter long. Nothing
like putting a pie in the oven when it's snowing
like crazy outside, knowing that we picked the
fruit 4 miles from our home!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I;m late, I'm late for a very important Spooky!

the kids pumpkins in a great light and shadow

this was a few days ago, these maples
have fully turned brilliant red and orange now

this was yesterday, from my bedroom window.
This maple is one of the last in my yard to turn,
but that one orange/yellow leaf is so pretty!

The view when I sit at the kitchen island for
breakfast. Sun has just broached the houses
across the street and smack full onto the side
yard maples. I love how the glassware
contrasts against the outside color and texture.

One more orange leaf pic...well, for today. A
short breeze blew just as I snapped this, but I
love the blurry image. Someday, someday
I will have time to make this into a quilt. But with
full blue sections sparkling behind the colors, like
the photo a few frames up.
Oh, I can't believe how behind on blogging
and blog reading I am. After 10 days with no
factory work, I suddenly had jobs at the two
that I do home work for...nearly simultaneously.
And all due "yesterday" so we were flat out between
that, and making time to rake up those beauties as they
I'll be catching up over the next few days. Down to working
just one job now here at home, canning is almost done.
Well, we went and picked what apples remain at the orchards
so I can can two more batches of apple pie filling (great with
the kids' oatmeal during the winter). And just when I had my
son take the canner and extra jars to the cellar...who knew the
orchard would be open after the first frost? Live and learn, I
guess. Anyway, this makes tomorrow a great "go nowhere" day.
Weather will be turning windy and raw and wet, and we might
see a few snowflakes, our first of the season!! (see, I knew I'd get
a scary thing in there somewhere!!!! Snow before I get all
the leaves raked for the season?? eeeeeeekkkkkkk!!)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

more autumn pix, maybe spooky, too!

Isn't it strange that one side of the road has turned color,
but the other side hasn't? Same climate, but less sunlight?
Hmmm, spoooky!

And just a bit down the road...sha-boom~ a gorgeous
riot of colors, even on this murky day.

And in my own yard, my "slow" maple has begun to turn as well,
a gorgeous tri-colored delight. I love how the red-orange
just glows in the low light from the overcast. The dark
pines behind make a nice contrast, too.

And my own cheery front door! KC painted the jack o lantern
last year, when he was 3, hence the few missed spots that make
it all the more precious to me.
Didja know that Indian corn was hung on doors to symbolize
that harvest had ended? I didn't know that! And our harvest
has indeed ended, pout. I was soooooo terrifically sad to turn
in the garden plot. We had to have it all done by today, so the farm
could plow it under. I loved my community garden plot, the location was
only 4 miles from my house, and high on a hill. Sunsets and thunderstorms were
awesome from up here, and the gardens got great wind movement to help
them to grow strong and steady. It was so sad to pull up the vines, pull up stakes,
literally and figuratively, and say goodbye. And yet, there is a larder full of things
from the garden, to fill our bellies with our own grown food!
As Candice Olsen from HGTV says...."How Divine"!!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Apple Peel Jelly/Halloween Bones Recipes

Apple Peel Jelly

peelings from multiple apples (like after making
apple pie)
place peels in pot with 5 cups water (I usually
use a generous 5 cups, closer to 5.5 cups).
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer and
cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat w/cover
on pot, and let sit overnight.

Strain liquid into measure cup, be sure you have
5 cups of liquid. Dispose of apple remains in your
compost bin, and put liquid into a bigger pan.
Add one box pectin, stir to dissolve pectin.
Heat on high, bringing to boil, and
add 7 cups of sugar all at once to pot, and bring back to boil.
I also add about 1 tsp of butter (not marg.) to help reduce
Let boil hard for 1 minute, then remove from heat.
Pack into sterile jelly jars leaving 1 inch headspace.
boiling water bath for 10 minutes.

This is sooo yummy, although my next batch I'm going
to try reducing the sugar by 1 cup as 7 cups is very
very sweet.

My jam costs 34 cents a jar, for something that would have
gone straight to my compost.

Halloween Bones via Recipezaar #44079
2 large egg whites
4 ounces confectioners sugar
1Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
2Beat the egg whites until stiff, starting on a low speed and gradually on a higher speed.
3Then start adding the sugar, a tablespoon at the time, keep beating until you have a thick and glossy meringue.
4Line baking trays with paper.
5Using a piping bag with a plain nozzle, pipe a straight meringue bone/line of approx 4 inch long, pipe 2 meringue balls at each end of the bone/line.
6Take of any pointy bits meringue on the balls with a small knife or use scissors.
7Bake the bones for 1 ¼ to 1-½ hours until they have dried out, let them cool on the paper.
8If you like the bones to look more brittle, then mix in some chopped nuts.
9The yield will depend on how large you make the bones and on the size of the nozzle.

October and it's moods...

first shot of moonrise two days ago..

last roses of summer bloom on...

And Elisabeth is done on the swings!
(talk about moods, that one!)

Friday, October 10, 2008

Post little spooky

My "spooky" window....
My living room window, tree "leaves" made
by KC and I this week, and added to our
fall tree...took this pic last night, and it doesn't
do justice to the glow of the backlight, and the
beautiful stained glass effect of the leaves
not to mention the real stained glass above the
I just love my old, old house!

One other thing you can do with apples...waste
not, want not.........
Apple Peel Jelly! (yommmmy!)

apples apples!

put in jars,
processed in boiling water bath
consume when snow flies!

Thursday, October 09, 2008

spooky foods

Halloween Bones

Jack O'Mac

Spooktacular Salad

All Hallows Eve

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

post spooky week 2

Local funeral home, all decked
out for the holidays....
Happy Harvest, guys!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Autumn Pretties

Joe Cool
and his
big Bro

Autumn beauty around every corner...

Post spooky...

Okay I confess, my sister sent this picture to me, it's called "when pumpkins drink" and it had me in hysterics! This is my "make up" post because I forgot to post last night, good intentions vs very tired bed won this round!
One of the things I LOVE about Halloween, is that, during the day of Halloween, the 3 boys spread out on the top of our driveway and gut their pumpkins, and carve them to their hearts desire. I started stepping back from the process a few years ago. Last year I opened and partially cleaned KC's pumpkin, but at 3.5 he was "ready Mom" to be out there with his big brothers. And although my eldest is 23, he is developmentally between 14 and 16, and he very much enjoys this yearly ritual. For Rob, this is the one thing he does where he doesn't mind having gross hands. The first few years he couldn't do it, it wayyyyyyyy grossed him out, and that was fine, but now, he's up to his elbows in gunk like the other two.! It will be interesting to see where Lissa goes with this ritual...she is not one to get her tiny paws gunky! Holds them up and goes "ISH ISH" and wants a napkin to wipe them off. . . in a way this a wee spooky, as my Mom always said "ish" for icky things, and she's been gone over 12 years, so there's no way she and Lissa had a heart to heart, at least on this side of the veil!! Oh how Mor Mor would have loved them all!

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Post Spooky 4

My sweet KC...he's my posting spooky for today..
more to follow..
Last night the neighbors had a woo hoo of a party, him and her only I think, and boy oy BOYZ were they drunk! And Loud. From inside their house I could hear them whooping and yelling and partying until 430 a.m. these are not young kids, either...they're in the 40's or so, a bit younger than Lee and I. I finally got up and turned on my window fan. Didn't care that it was 37 out (I sleep with a window open for as long as possible), I would rather be cold than awakened every 30 minutes by raucous drunken laughter.

So today was a rather wasted day. I should NOT have been sewing. sigh. am making lovely lavender cuddleskin nightgown for Moi, but sewed the wrong end of the yoke onto the top of the gown, URG and even DOUBLE STITCHED the bloody thing to reinforce it. I will take it out tomorrow when my brain will be working again. There was something else I screwed up sewing too, forget what it was. Put my machine away. Did not put on the iron. Did go for a walk and left the tea kettle on (gas stove)...had about 1/4 cup of water in in when we got home oh for gods sakes!

Got my CSA boxes, and put up the first of the winter squashes, oh yummm mmm.

so, for my post spooky...a funny tale tonight...

Friday I started decorating for Halloween. Put out our giant plastic jack o lanterns ( I think there is a pic of them somewhere in a recent blog entry here). I had colored my hair last week, and my son had a b.m. near catastrophy and just as my timer went off to rinse out the dye, he called me from the bathroom "mom come quick I'm having POOP!" So I go in and he's fine but wants me to stay with him. "Poop is such a pain when it won't come out fast" he says, with 4 year old wisdom. "Come ON" he hollers at his tummy and into the potty between his legs..."I have things to DO". Finally this wonderful experience ends, and I've exceeded my color time by 15 minutes. So, instead of light auburn, I had deep dark brunette which has some red in some light. This is the darkest my hair has ever been and it's kinda nice, but also shocking, as I'd really wanted red hair. Not too much of a problem, as I have a highlight kit and later I can put in highlights and that will bring up the color a bit, and give color dimension.

Day comes when I have time to do this. Friday, last week. So I'm going to be rinsing out the highlights when KC asks for raisins. I tell him where they are (pantry, a spare closet in the guest bedroom behind the kitchen). He goes in and I go under the water to rinse. I hear a sound, but have by now forgotten that he's gone off for his raisins about 8 minutes ago. I rinse and rinse, then add conditioner. There...I hear it again...a spooky wail...heeelllp....ooohhh, helllllpppp meeee! It's from far away..what the heck? and again...:oh please, please won't somebody hellpppp meeeee...Suddenly I realize that KC has not come back and it's been 15 minutes. I grab my towel and wrap my hair while yelling for Robbie to come help find his brother. Which we do. He's been in the pantry all this time, poor fellow, too scared of the jack o lanterns to pass back through the dining room alone, and has closeted himself in the cold pantry to be rescued.

Oh my! Poor lil pumpkin pie!! He was soo scared. Sometimes I forget how big the world is when you're 4.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Posting Spooky #3

Okay, if this isn't a scary picture, I don't know
what is! No makeup, end of the day, home from
work, and Oh My!

And then there is this breathtaking photo! OMG!
is that MY chin, and chin, and chin??

OOkay, still no make up, but at least I's got

a smile on my face!! The end of a l-o-n-g day..
only day I work outside the house, missing my
kids, but I do get some projects done if it's slow...
of course, if it's slow, the time creeps by.

Well, I guess that's all the creative spookyness
I can dish out tonight. My brain has come
unwrapped like a mummy..hey, wait, I am
a mummy...well, heehee, the cobwebs are
growing faster than my brainwaves can keep
up with, so I guess I'll creak up to my room,
where it's quiet as a tomb, and read my
tome (Friday Night Knitting Club) which I just
started today. When I got home from work.
Because I left it on the kitchen table instead of
BRINGING it to work, like the dummy mummy
I can be!

End it already!
how mwahhahahahahahaha....creepy!

Friday, October 03, 2008

Post Spooky 2

spooky dead tree swamp, sun set,
and my favorite one tree on a hill
picture on the hill that overlooks my
hometown nestled into a hollow,
below a ridge of granite

Although I don't recommend it, I took this picture in the series above while I was driving down the highway. Small highway, but still..not a wise idea, dontcha know?! They were actually taken nearly 2 years ago, on a January evening, during the "winter without a winter" in New England. You may recall, if you're from here, that we never got snow this winter until mid-February, not even a flake, and then it snowed into April. My son was taking snowboard lessons and they almost couldn't hold class because of how warm it was, they were having trouble making snow at night. By week 3 it was finally warm enough that there was about two feet of base snow, but it was just so spooky and wierd (hence, the addition of said photo's into an October Spooky Blog!)

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Posting Spooky, one day late...

late to the Spooky Party, but at least I got to the party, right?! Today we started to add to the fall decorations that I put up last week.

Robbie made all the arrangements in the various pots and fun! I only had to do the swags of silk leaves around the window and door.

One pumpkin for each kiddo. The one on the step is the one KC grew from a seed, a great experience for him. The two giant ones we found...check Home Depot!! Went in for plumbing parts, and came out with two pumpkins that weighed at least 45 pounds each...I could barely get them into the car! And you'll NEVER guess what I paid for them...$8.88 each pumpkin! OMG! What a steal! Then, on top of the two biggies is the wee one that is Elisabeth's. She picked it out of the field (we got 3 with our CSA boxes, two are to cook for pie, but the third is all hers!)
So, maybe this post isn't all that spooky...but what will happen to that wonderful pie that KC and I made today will will disappear right before our very eyes, and be gone by sundown....