Archive for the ‘ice’ Category

People Make Me Sick

Saturday, February 2nd, 2008

Between the trip to Richmond last week and the trip to the dentist, somewhere, somehow, someone managed to infect me with a Death Cold. I’m feeling better now, but the last week has been misery. And today poor Bernie is sick as a dawg with it. People have germs and they are not afraid to share them. Watch your back out there.

We had an ice storm a couple of days ago. Naturally, when there is weather trees on our homestead start falling down. We had to spent some time clearing the driveway of fallen trees. Even though it can sure cause some damage, ice is really pretty to look at. I put some pictures I took up on the website if you’d like to take a look. While I was playing around with the camera, I got this shot:

Photobucket

I wish I had been paying better attention instead of focused on catching that little drop of water. I would have made sure Bernie’s blue tarped fire wood pile wasn’t the background for the picture. But I kind of like it anyway.

I decided to do a little project with glycerin soap and make something kids will enjoy. I poured the soap into cello bags, embedded little plastic toy gold fish, and then topped them off with more soap. Look at how cute this little fish in a bag is:

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I made several bags and used all different colored fish. I even wrote a little fish poem and attached it to the bag. Just when you thought you had witnessed the extent of my talents, I offer this for your amazement:

I’m just a little fishy,
Won’t you set me free?
Make the bathtub swishy,
And lather up with me.

While we’re in the water,
We’ll have so much fun.
Splashing like an otter,
Our friendship has begun.

Wash and scrub all over,
Don’t forget behind your ears.
You’ll smell fresh as clover.
I will bring you lots of cheer.

So lather up like crazy,
While you play with me.
If you do this daily,
Soon I will be free.

Now what kid could resist a soap with a fish toy and an awesome little poem like that?

Tomorrow is Super Bowl Sunday. Bernie has his menu planned – I just hope he’s feeling well enough to enjoy it.

People make me sick – and apparently I make Bernie sick.

Bee Free,
Penny

Finless and Fancy Free

Thursday, January 24th, 2008

I had my fin removed yesterday. The only painful part was the 50,000 times he stuck me with a needle to deaden my mouth. There was no way pain was going to sneak through all the Novocaine he shot in there. My entire head was numb by the time he got started. I won’t give you all the gory details, but you can imagine just how pleasant it is to see items entering your mouth that look and sound like the tools your husband uses while working on a car engine. Finally, Dr. Specialist announced “There it is! I see your fin. I wish I could take a picture for you to put on your blog.” I had a moment of absolute horror as I wondered if he had actually read my blog, but then decided he was just a little techno-savvy and being chatty. Otherwise I am certain he would have commented on my wonderful drawing. He sewed in six stitches and I was on my merry way.

So the fin is gone and other than a few minutes of discomfort as the Novocaine wore off, I’m really feeling just fine. So fine, in fact, that I actually made another batch of soap today. My niece called to inform me that she loves my soap, but her husband doesn’t care for all the girly smells. So I decided to make a batch especially for him. I used my mold that makes over sized bars again – and this time I colored it black and stirred in white confetti soap. Then I used the blender to whip up a bit of the soap that I had removed before adding the black color and spread a layer of white topping on the black soap. I know how it’s supposed to look, but I have no idea how it will actually turn out. I scented it with a fragrance oil that smells like Polo Sport for Men. I’ll cut it tomorrow and if it turns out half way decent, I’ll post a picture here. Since “Polo Sport for Men” is taken, I’m calling this one Troy because, well, it was inspired by Troy. I am so darn creative.

Lobby Day at our Capitol went really well and we spoke to as many representatives as we could pin down. We’re writing the ones we missed and Bernie will be back down there a few more times this session. They may not vote the way we want them to, but certainly they won’t vote before knowing how we feel about it.

Between shuttling me to the dentist and trying to keep up with things around here, Bernie’s been chipping ice off the driveway. We have a fairly steep hill just before you get to the house that was covered in ice and getting a bit scary to maneuver. For my daily outing, I took the Trail Blazer down to check mail and was quite pleased with the job he did on the driveway. I don’t mind excitement, but that driveway was getting just a little more exciting than I like. It’s fine now and he finished it just in time for it to start snowing again. Hopefully it’s just a flurry. But I don’t trust Old Man Winter. You may remember we ended up with eight inches of snow after predicted flurries last year.

We’re still plugging along on the homestead. The ground is too frozen to put in fence posts right now. Bernie still has some trees to deal with that fell during various storms this winter. We’ll just add that to the never ending list of things that keep us busy and happy around here.

Bee Free,
Penny

Our Christmas Trees

Sunday, December 16th, 2007

With no children in our house, the fact that we travel to my parent’s at Christmas, and with two cats that are obsessed with anything that dangles, we no longer put up a Christmas Tree. But it seems Mother Nature provided us with several this year, complete with icicles:

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The first couple of picture were taken just at daybreak. Very pretty and it’s especially easy to appreciate because it’s only on the higher branches, which means the ground is only wet. And we didn’t get it as bad as they called for. I hope it stays that way.

It looks like we only lost one tree in the yard. If you look very closely in these pictures, you may be able to see a downed tree in these pictures. It’s up at the tree line to the right of the big tree in the middle of the first picture – and to the left in the second picture. We haven’t been down the driveway yet, so I’m not sure if there are any down across the road yet. The next couple of days will be interesting when the high winds get here. We typically lose a few trees when the ground is wet and then high winds come in.

This morning we’ll enjoy the view of decorated trees that Mother Nature has provided. I sure hope she doesn’t get angry and pummel us with a mess.

Bee Free,
Penny

Scat. Lots of Scat.

Saturday, May 5th, 2007

We spent today mowing. We have a few acres to mow and between that and weed wacking, it’s pretty much a full day of work. Bernie weed wacked around the apiary and noticed two things – lots of bees returning to the hive with pollen and lots of scat around two of the hives. Our weakest two hives to be exact. I put pictures on The Bee Buzz of the girls weighted down with pollen and of the scat. The scat is most certainly skunk scat. Skunks love to eat bees. I wrote a little about that on The Bee Buzz Blog. We plan to add some electric wire down low tomorrow that will keep the skunks out.

As we were walking in the front yard, picking up tree limbs and rocks before we mowed, we noticed some bear scat – in two different areas. Between the bears and the skunks I do worry about our bees. I am hoping the electric fence will detract both of them.

Other than mowing and worrying about scat, the weekend has been rather calm so far. We bought a new battery for Bernie’s bike and installed it after we mowed. It started raining shortly after noon and is supposed to rain through the night. Thank goodness we have the garage now or we wouldn’t have been able to work on his bike at all. Even though it’s the beginning of May, we have a fire in the fireplace. I’m just certain summer is only around the corner

All in all, our homestead is doing well. Predators are a fact of life in the country and we will deal with them the best we can. In the meantime our bees are happy and bringing in lots of bounty! I can only hope that equates to lots of honey in the fall.

Bee Free,
Penny

Bee pictures displaying in Internet Exploder

Wednesday, March 28th, 2007

Well, I did a pretty awful job of testing before I launched the new Bee Buzz website. The picture page wasn’t properly displaying in the Internet Explorer web browser. I really don’t like Internet Explorer for exactly that reason. The webpage showed up fine in Netscape, Mozilla, Firefox, etc. but NOOOOOO….. not in Internet Exploder.

At any rate, the pages are fixed now. You can now properly view the pictures of when we first got the bees (originally posted on the Back to Basic Living website) and you can now properly view the latest pictures of the bees – even if you’re using Internet Exploder.

I also started a blog about the bees you may want to look into.

I’ve given you a ton of links to check out, so I’ll sign off you can get busy checking them out!

Bee Free,
Penny

What a Difference a Day Makes!

Sunday, February 25th, 2007

When we went to bed last night we were under the distinct impression that we would wake up to some “snow showers”. When we woke up this morning, we found we had accumlated between 7 – 8 inches of snow showers! It was quite a surprise. And it continues to fall as I am writing this. The weather people are telling us to expect sleet this afternoon. I hope they are as wrong about that as they were the snow showers. Snow is so much easier to deal with than ice is…..

The snow is absolutely gorgeous and I snapped a few pictures when we headed out for fire wood and to clean off the bee hive entrances. It apparently sleeted first, as the hive entrances were encased in ice under all the snow. We dug them out – and the girls are snuggled down so tightly they didn’t even venture down to see what all the noise was about. I hope they stay warm.

Well, we would normally head back to town today, but it’s looking like we’ll be stuck here at the homestead over night. We should be able to dig out by tomorrow and get on the road. Hey, there are certainly worse places to be than here!

Bee Free,
Penny

Andirons from H-E-Double Hockey Sticks

Saturday, February 24th, 2007

You may recall that last week I mentioned that Bernie and Tex were working on making us some andirons that circulate heat for our fireplace. Well, they did – and those andirons produce more heat than I would have thought possible. These are certainly not the prettiest andirons you will ever see, but I’m here to tell you they work! I put some pictures of them up on the website, and included some pictures of the modifications we had to make. If you are using a fireplace and looking for a way to get more heat out of it, I highly recommend making these. I estimate they spent about 4 hours making them and they are a heat generating machine!

I also started a Homestead Pictures – II project on the BackToBasicLiving website. I really had to do that as Homestead Pictures – I was getting rather lengthy!

And finally, we checked in on the bees and they seem to be holding up really well in all this cold weather. We saw a few of the girls out and about. They were cleaning house and dragging out the poor little dead bees that didn’t fair very well in all this cold weather. I put a picture on the website of the girls around one of the hives. Scroll to the bottom and click the picture dated 2/24/07 to enlarge it and you can see the girls around the entrance, and the dead bees just outside of it.

It’s only Saturday, but I wanted to get the pictures up for you to see. I can’t wait to sell our home in town and get out to our homestead full time. I plan to keep you busy looking at pictures of all our projects and reading my words of wisdom and wit on homesteading.

Bee Free,
Penny

Ice is Really Hard – and I’ve got the scrapes and bruises to prove it.

Monday, February 19th, 2007

As I mentioned in a previous post, we had snow last week that covered the ground about 3 inches before it turned to sleet and covered that with about 3 inches of ice. Well, while we were at the homestead this weekend, it flurried off and on and left about 1/4 inch of snow on top of the ice. That actually seemed to help with traction and I found walking outside a little easier. Until this morning…..

As we were packing up to leave the homestead and get back to town to do our chores, I decided to take some leftover dinner rolls out to the edge of the woods for the birds to nibble on in this ice covered tundra that used to be a nice feasting area for them. As I stepped outside, I tested my first few steps and discovered it really did not feel that slippery. The little bit of snow that topped the ice really seemed to have helped. I went prancing out towards the woodline and suddenly my feet started sliding. My legs twirled in place, similar to those cartoons characters that hit a slick spot, and all of a sudden BAM – my legs came flying above my head and my rear end made an abrupt contact with the ice. I threw my arms out to catch myself and as I slid across the ground I could not help but wonder if those birds would appreciate my efforts, or if they were laughing their feathers off. When I finally came to a stand still both elbows were bleeding and my rear end hurt. I hurled the bread as far as I could and slowly made my way back into the house.

Once we got back to town, Bernie took off to Tex’s house – they’re going to make some andirons for our fireplace that will blow the heat back into the room. I’ll be sure to post pictures of the final product on the website. I stayed home to clean house with achey elbows. We’re going to talk to some real estate agents and pick what we hope is a good one to sell our home in town for us. We really need to get this thing sold – keeping up two homes is really wearing on us.

I took a picture of the beehives while it was snowing. I really hate leaving the girls there by themselves, but they seem to be doing pretty darn well on their own! I also updated the website album with a picture of snow coming down on the homestead.

Oh – if you haven’t signed up to be notified when the blog is updated, you can do that on the right side of this page.

Bee Free,
Penny

Ice is Really Hard – and I’ve got the scrapes and bruises to prove it.

Monday, February 19th, 2007

As I mentioned in a previous post, we had snow last week that covered the ground about 3 inches before it turned to sleet and covered that with about 3 inches of ice. Well, while we were at the homestead this weekend, it flurried off and on and left about 1/4 inch of snow on top of the ice. That actually seemed to help with traction and I found walking outside a little easier. Until this morning…..

As we were packing up to leave the homestead and get back to town to do our chores, I decided to take some leftover dinner rolls out to the edge of the woods for the birds to nibble on in this ice covered tundra that used to be a nice feasting area for them. As I stepped outside, I tested my first few steps and discovered it really did not feel that slippery. The little bit of snow that topped the ice really seemed to have helped. I went prancing out towards the woodline and suddenly my feet started sliding. My legs twirled in place, similar to those cartoons characters that hit a slick spot, and all of a sudden BAM – my legs came flying above my head and my rear end made an abrupt contact with the ice. I threw my arms out to catch myself and as I slid across the ground I could not help but wonder if those birds would appreciate my efforts, or if they were laughing their feathers off. When I finally came to a stand still both elbows were bleeding and my rear end hurt. I hurled the bread as far as I could and slowly made my way back into the house.

Once we got back to town, Bernie took off to Tex’s house – they’re going to make some andirons for our fireplace that will blow the heat back into the room. I’ll be sure to post pictures of the final product on the website. I stayed home to clean house with achey elbows. We’re going to talk to some real estate agents and pick what we hope is a good one to sell our home in town for us. We really need to get this thing sold – keeping up two homes is really wearing on us.

I took a picture of the beehives while it was snowing. I really hate leaving the girls there by themselves, but they seem to be doing pretty darn well on their own! I also updated the website album with a picture of snow coming down on the homestead.

Oh – if you haven’t signed up to be notified when the blog is updated, you can do that on the right side of this page.

Bee Free,
Penny

Ice is Really Hard – and I’ve got the scrapes and bruises to prove it.

Monday, February 19th, 2007

As I mentioned in a previous post, we had snow last week that covered the ground about 3 inches before it turned to sleet and covered that with about 3 inches of ice. Well, while we were at the homestead this weekend, it flurried off and on and left about 1/4 inch of snow on top of the ice. That actually seemed to help with traction and I found walking outside a little easier. Until this morning…..

As we were packing up to leave the homestead and get back to town to do our chores, I decided to take some leftover dinner rolls out to the edge of the woods for the birds to nibble on in this ice covered tundra that used to be a nice feasting area for them. As I stepped outside, I tested my first few steps and discovered it really did not feel that slippery. The little bit of snow that topped the ice really seemed to have helped. I went prancing out towards the woodline and suddenly my feet started sliding. My legs twirled in place, similar to those cartoons characters that hit a slick spot, and all of a sudden BAM – my legs came flying above my head and my rear end made an abrupt contact with the ice. I threw my arms out to catch myself and as I slid across the ground I could not help but wonder if those birds would appreciate my efforts, or if they were laughing their feathers off. When I finally came to a stand still both elbows were bleeding and my rear end hurt. I hurled the bread as far as I could and slowly made my way back into the house.

Once we got back to town, Bernie took off to Tex’s house – they’re going to make some andirons for our fireplace that will blow the heat back into the room. I’ll be sure to post pictures of the final product on the website. I stayed home to clean house with achey elbows. We’re going to talk to some real estate agents and pick what we hope is a good one to sell our home in town for us. We really need to get this thing sold – keeping up two homes is really wearing on us.

I took a picture of the beehives while it was snowing. I really hate leaving the girls there by themselves, but they seem to be doing pretty darn well on their own! I also updated the website album with a picture of snow coming down on the homestead.

Oh – if you haven’t signed up to be notified when the blog is updated, you can do that on the right side of this page.

Bee Free,
Penny