A new year, a new format

The last several years I’ve struggled with content and consistently writing this here ‘ol blog. If you’ve followed this blog for any length of time then you know how I’ve written less and less in the past couple of years.

I had the bright idea this morning of changing it into more of a daily journal-type format. After all, our byline is ‘journal of a coupla’ fair-weathered farmsteaders’! I’m hoping that by utilizing this format I will be more inclined to sit down and write a few things at the end of each day. Some days I may not have much to write about whereas other days there may be lots. I will probably accumulate several days before actually publishing a post.

So, let’s give it a shot, shall we?

Thursday, January 9

Apparently I had no idea what day it was other than I knew I was to work at the newspaper that day. After I sat down at my desk I immediately grabbed the calendar that sits on my desk and started marking through Thursday, Friday, Saturday and as I was crossing through Sunday it finally dawned on me that it was only Thursday. sheesh.

It was actually a relief to discover that it was Thursday and not Monday since Thursday is actually my Friday. Maybe that’s why I have a hard time knowing what day it actually is!

It was a pretty non-eventful day. In fact, it was quite boring. We were all caught up, there weren’t many ads coming in and the phones rang but it wasn’t too bad. I decided to start typing up our Times Past page for the following week. I’m pulling articles from the 1929 archives.

I enjoy reading the various news stories from back then and picking which articles to use. Times sure were different back then.

I came home to a brand new portico over the back door…

actually, CountryBoy made it out of scrap wood and tin so I guess it’s not really new but in this form it is.

Anyway, I love it! It will add some protection against the elements when trying to get in the back door or letting LizzieBell out to do her business. It also adds some character to the otherwise very plain backside of the house. In the warmer months I’ll flank the doorway with some potted plants.

That evening I was able to get back to my crochet project after having picked up some more yarn earlier in the week. We also watched the 2004 documentary film “Super Size Me”. The film documents a 30 day experiment of eating nothing but McDonalds food. Granted, most people would not eat solely fast food but many good points about nutrition and the role food plays in our health are made throughout the film. This experiment brought about some rather rapid health changes in the participant and it took him 14 months to lose the weight he had gained in the 30 day experiment. What a tragedy we face these days in the food industry – so many choices and so little of it has any/if at all nutritional value.

Friday, January 10

Ah, my day off!

I spent the morning doing some of the laundry, watering and moving plants around, making iced tea and tidying up the storage room.

After that we headed to the cabin to ready it for a check-in the next day and I wanted to take a few more photos to add to our Airbnb listing…

Once everything was in order we sat in the chairs on the deck up there for a bit. I tell you what, it’s SO peaceful! We didn’t want to leave but I had an Apple Crisp to make so we reluctantly headed back down.

Mid-afternoon we took some friends out to eat for one of their birthdays then went back to their place to play a new-to-us card game and eat some Apple Crisp. It was a fun evening!

On the way to the restaurant we stopped and picked up a ring I had dropped off at the jewelers earlier in the week to have repaired. It was an anniversary ring with several diamonds and it was my Mom’s. The band was very thin on the bottom and had broke. I was hoping it could be soldered back together but it was too thin and would just break again so the jeweler added a 1/4″ shank of gold and did a great job. It cost me every bit of my Christmas work bonus and then some to have it repaired. Oh well, I was glad I had it and I’m even more glad to have Mom’s ring repaired so I can wear it again.

Saturday, January 11

Ah, another day off!

The last several weeks have been unseasonably warm for this time of the year. We’ve been able to sit on the porch when time permits and have been able to do more outdoor projects and just be outside more in general. It’s been GREAT!

I started the morning doing the rest of the laundry and baking some banana bread. I always make a fresh batch the day someone is checking in. I make three mini-loaves at a time which is perfect if we have two different groups of guests checking-in over the weekend – one for each of them and one for us!

The weather forecast was one of rain in the afternoon with wind and heavy gusts up to 40 mph. They were right…

Once again we were going to have to send the guests up the mountain in the side-by-side rather than the road…

You can see in the above photo the ruts the tires are making on the hillside. It won’t be long and the hillside will be too tore up to get up to the cabin even in the side-by-side. We’re hoping for a dry spell just long enough to dry the ground out so the rock truck can get up the road to lay the gravel.

Prior to the guests arrival CountryBoy noticed the equipment barn doors were wide open. The wind was so strong it broke the wooden latch…

He managed to close the doors in the heavy wind and propped some metal posts against them to keep them closed…

We also lost some more tin off the barn roof and another piece of barn wood came off…

It was definitely a rainy, windy, gusty day.

Late afternoon our guests arrived and they safely made it up the hill and into the cabin. We then settled in for a quiet evening of relaxation.

Just before we headed to bed the lights began to flicker and then the power went out. I glanced towards the cabin that was lit up with oil lamps and I laughed at the irony. The guests in our little off-grid cabin carried on with their game of Scrabble and had no clue that the power was out. In fact, when we told them about it the next day they said we should’ve come up!

Thankfully the power was back on in less than an hour even though outages don’t bother us much. In fact, we kinda like them. It forces us to slow down and to just be.

Sunday, January 12

I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase Sunday Funday well, it’s Sunday Monday for me.

We were not able to go to church this morning since we had people in the cabin that would be checking out. If every Saturday starts being booked with Sunday morning check-outs we are going to have to come up with an alternative check-out plan so that we don’t miss too many Sundays. It’s a good problem to have but we miss our church family and in these days and times it does not bode well for one to miss too many chances to be encouraged and uplifted.

Shortly after our guests left I headed on in to work at the B&B. I thought I’d show you the two extremes in my work places…

Six miles from the farm I turn off onto a small road that quickly turns into a gravel road that leads to the B&B. Up, down and around I travel on this gravel road…

until I arrive at my destination…

…Snug Hollow Farm B&B.

I spend most of my time here ironing sheets & linens on a large, sit-down iron with a roller. The rest of my time is spent creating newsletters, stocking the gift shop, making their signature room sprays, a little Social Media work and generally doing whatever else I see needs done. Occasionally I will help out if there’s a large dinner party. There’s always something going on there and it’s a nice variety of work.

Monday, January 13

Today I headed to the newspaper job in town.

The mountains were streaked with fog…

… and the geese were enjoying a swim in the pond.

Twelve miles later I arrived at my destination…

It’s grand old building in the heart of downtown. In its heyday it was a hotel. Now? There’s four of us in two different spaces putting together two different newspapers. The rest of the building is not used for anything. Seems a shame. Maybe one day it will be a happening place again.

After a long day at work and a quick stop at Save-a-Lot I headed home.

On the farm – CountryBoy replaced the broken latch on one of the barn doors that broke during the heavy winds the other day, repaired a nesting-deterrent in the chicken coop (it’s a couple of long pieces of wood attached together that we swing up in the morning revealing the nest boxes and we swing down at night to keep the chickens from sleeping & pooping in the nest boxes), he worked on our back door (don’t ask!) and he made supper.

Speaking of nest boxes, we got seven eggs today. Egg production is finally picking up – yay!

Now it’s time for me to turn off the devices and unwind before heading to bed.

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