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Zillion billion things to do

April 21, 2010

Spring has arrived, and as always, there are TOO MANY THINGS TO DO. We could really use a few early wwoofers this year!!! Mud season was short, since the snow was gone by the beginning of April – normally it is still hanging around even now. Not that the cold weather is past – it did snow here at the weekend (which is why we didn’t join Elisabeth’s swimming event! Sorry for being such wussbinders, E!!!), but melted pretty quick. It’s been windy, rainy, hail-y….just the usual April weather, then.

Things have caught up with us more than usual, and I think it’s because the mud didn’t hang around. We’re not complaining – mud season sucks!! – but it does somewhat prepare you for the upcoming season; rather like my drive to work prepares me for the day at the office, since I can let off steam yelling, pissing and moaning about the drivers,  😉  and listening to Nine Inch Nails full volume to wake me up.  So, we missed swearing and moaning about the mud; the sun is [half] out, and we’re late planting our greenhouse/coldframe seeds. WHAAAT!!!! What’s more, those that did get planted have already been slept on by a cat. It’s ok – after cussin’ the cat and a bit of grovelling at the plants, I think the damage can be repaired.

Scott’s been super busy – working at trying to get the Big Grey Truck up and running….

….and then spending the rest of the time sawing and figuring out how to bundle cedar shingles.  Shingles are very much the fash around these parts, and we like ’em the natural style: bare and aged to grey. They look darn fine on an old barn. One day we hope to take off all the vinyl on the house and replace it with shingles (oops! admitted the nice red farmhouse is not natural!!! Well, WE didn’t do it…)  They’re a pretty good product, although fiddly and time-consuming; but they do use up a fair amount of odd (e.g. short) wood. And like anything we do, it all adds to the sum of the parts.


Our neighbor…

April 21, 2010

We were coming home from supper at George and Joy’s and halfway down our driveway we passed our neighbor, in his usual spot. We happened to have the camera….so here he is.

Mister Porkinpine (or could be Missus, I couldn't tell. How do you tell?!!? They all wear tutus!!!)

Night school

April 14, 2010
Bead class

So Scott’s been busy trying to fix the truck, and I’ve been busy after work running to my bead class.  Only three weeks left after this one – and class s starts winding down. I started out showing some slides on design, balance, symmetry, color; also how to put jewelry together in a technical sense – stringing materials, clasps, and so on.  Now it gets to the point where I have fewer students, and they all like to get on with projects following what we’ve discussed – which is a great time for me to actually do some crafting, too.

Beady dangles

Right now I have this obsession with charm bracelets and dangles. So I was trying to put together some dangly earrings. I got as far as two (vaguely similar) piles of dangles, one for each ear. The actual construction will have to wait for another time – like everything else, it seems!

Easter…a week late?

April 11, 2010

Bedroom chicks!

Ok, a couple here….Easter daffs and Easter chicks. And the chicks are in our bedroom, with the light on all night (to keep them warm, not awake).  Their mama was a bit over-enthusiastic and would trample them in her protective panic every time a person, a cat, Jacopo, another chicken, a blowing leaf, etc. got close.  Hence, chickens in my bedroom.


Daffodils behind the house

The snapshot approach

April 10, 2010

Tanning my Hide

So, here’s me, worrying about blogging and lack of time and the fact that I’m lazy and would rather spend ‘blogging time’ cleaning the house, scrubbing my rug (hem, hem, no, really, the one on the floor), and making jewelry and beady things and all the while steeping in mild guilt…..when the solution (or a temporary one, at least) is offered by a Norwegian.

Thanks, Elisabeth; your Spitsbergen adventures have given me new hope. One photo a day, and if I get round to blah blah blah, then so be it.

Here we go, then. One photo a day.

This one represents an “In Loving Memory” to Pretty Cow. But is that too strange to prepare the hide of your favorite cow? It’s only so Scott can glance upon her with fondness even though she is no more.  Hmmn. Well…..we like the idea. There’s too much waste in the world, anyway.

Not enough hours in the day

March 20, 2010

OK, let’s start this again.

Let’s start with a question.

How the heck do people do this?!??

So, I started a blog with the intention of practicing writing; keeping up to date; etc, blah. And here it is; two months into the new year – no more posts. What’s going on?

Well, for a start, I have a full-time job. And that full-time job involves (for the large part) me sitting on my butt in front of a computer screen, and thinking, and writing. Then, I sit for two more hours (one there, one back) in the car. When I get home, Scott and the boys are busy doing chores, firewood, and general outside work, and will be until dark.  By the time I’ve unpacked my bags, made a cup of tea, cooked or aided Scott in cooking, eaten, cleaned up, and talked about the day, it’s eight thirty, if not later.  Sometimes there’s a bit of housework to be done (most of it takes up much of the weekend); sometimes I bring some work home; at least a couple of nights a week I work on preparation for one of my evening classes – which of course is at least one night a week.

Sometimes (following the time change) there’s even time to go for a walk before dark…

Walking the snowmobile trail

My option, then, at 9 pm or so, is to: write a bit of blog? or, shove over and let Scott at the internet, which will usually mean an episode of Dexter and a glass of wine before bedtime.

Don’t think this is a complaint; oh, no. I am just amazed at how much time and effort life takes up. Things have apparently gotten easier and faster in the modern world; so, why do we still spend all of our time doing so much stuff?

Is it environmentally friendly to work all hours of the day? To drive there, to use all that electricity, to use a big plastic computer, to print out all that paper? How about to do what Scott does; cutting down trees with a chainsaw and tractor?

Well, I think the point is more that everything costs so much, and we have to work so hard to have all this stuff. House, car, other car, computer, TV, DVD, phone, other phone, food, drink, treats. I know that Scott’s opinion of ‘green’ housing, for example, is that if something costs so much because it’s full of newfangled green technology, how green can it really be if you add up the hours you have to work to achieve that?

Perhaps I wish I was back in the stone age. (I am a Palaeolithic archaeologist, after all.) But then – there would be aurochs to hunt, stone tools to knap, spears to sharpen, firewood to collect, caves to paint. Things would have been simpler, no doubt, but different to what we’re used to – less luxurious. We’re used to luxury, and by luxury, I mean, clothes. Cleanliness. Lack of hunger. Solid, permanent housing. Warmth at the touch of a button. The internet, for goodness’ sake.

Anyway. My point is – we’re all busy, busy, busy, and a blog just adds to the busy busy. I shall just have to try harder to juggle my hours and get back to the writing. Scott keeps nagging me to write – it is part of my ‘me time’, after all. It’s how we met and it’s part of who we are.

Maybe I should set myself some goals! One blog a week to start with. Okay, then. Here’s my first one for this week (an admittance: I wrote it two weeks ago and didn’t finish it!!!) Please, feel free to smack me around a little bit if I don’t keep up on it.

Love y’all. x

Even if there's no time to blog, there's always time to go for walks with Lilo...

Hello world!

January 10, 2010

Ok, so here it is. A new year, a new blog.

Well, just “a blog”, to be more accurate.

So, what’s this all about? Many things, I suppose. Firstly, Ol’ Ways Farm is an entity in itself a needs a blog. So much happens here, facebook definitely doesn’t seem to cut it! and besides, our personal facebooks are used more often than the farm facebook, which seems to just get used for uploading photos….essentially, though, a farm is a going concern, and it’s pretty damn interesting to note the ins and outs on a regular basis, good or bad. Think of it as a soap opera. And our diary.

Secondly, Scott is ridiculously opinionated, and I really think he needs an outlet. I’m damn sure I’LL be the one posting all the time, because his command of the English language is restricted and his typing speed is glacial…sorry, hon, it’s true!!  I’m sure we’ll come up with a way for Farmer Scott to rant, and I simply edit and publish.

Thirdly…I’m supposed to be a writer, and seriously? I don’t. Yeah, ok, so I write archaeological reports all day. That doesn’t count. I want to be able to write about my own stuff. Yes, yes…. I KNOW an archaeological analysis is totally subjective, but you know what I mean.  So, mmmn, yes, this is my New Year’s resolution: to write something, personal, regularly. We shall see how that goes…since I sit at a computer all day and am not thrilled at doing the same when I get home…

(Perhaps this will be partially dependent on my second New Year’s resolution: to get up off my ass more and MOVE.)

Fourthly…WWOOFERS! Old ones, new ones, ones who want to come, ones who come back, ones who want to spy on us when they’re not here, ones who want to keep up with other ones. This is for you – all of you. I shall say no more at this juncture.

Fifthly…friends and family. Overseas, across the country, in the next town even. You all want to know what the heck is going on all the time, and you all love getting emails and letters from me[/us] – yet I’m pretty atrocious at it. (See above comment w.r.t. “sitting on my ass all day”).  So, this way, you can all keep up with us whenever the heck you like!

List of basic reasons aside, I guess I have one particular influence to thank, and that’s Jennay: Jennay (as we know her: you see, Scott is Forrest Gump) was one of our wwoofers, and perhaps made us the most proud. Yes, we’ve had a good selection of fantastic wwoofers who were all excellent workers and moreover, have become good friends (the Wacks; the Witches; Eminem; etc etc – you all know who you are!!), but Jennay kind of stood out for the personal turnaround. I guess you’d just have to read her blog of her visit to see what I mean: .  More than that, though, I think Jennay has a huge college workload and a rich social life, and still manages to produce a damn good blog that made me feel a little ashamed…I spent my spare time in MY college years getting drunk! How dare I call myself a writer? Suffice it to say that I thought it was about time to get my ass in gear.

So, people, here it is. The first post to the first blog of Ol’ Ways Farm, aka Scott and Gemma’s Cluster****. I’ll be taking bets on how long I actually manage to keep this up.