Sunday, February 27, 2011

Possibly TMI

On this cloudy, snowy day, I'm prepping to "practice what I preach". Tomorrow I will undergo the turning 50 right of passage that I have postponed for a while for no good reason except that time flies and the Scarlett O'Hara syndrome, I'll-worry-about-that-tomorrow. So that means clear liquids only today which is an interesting experiment in and of itself. It takes a lot of chicken broth and Gatorade and apple juice to keep hunger at bay - a bit of a continuous effort. Soooo grateful that black coffee is a clear liquid.
We went for a long snowshoe late this morning and I probably spent more calories than I should have but it was worth it. Lots of new snow has fallen over the past few days.
L. and J. on the trail.
J. was doing a lot of off trail snowshoeing to get more of a workout and got more than she bargained for when she hit this spot where the underlying snowpack was loose.
It was great to get outside even if the weather wasn't great. Now it's more liquids, some time with my current read and maybe even finishing my Tea Leaves sweater I've been knitting periodically for over a year!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Moody's Diner

It took 68 months of living in Maine before I made my way into Moody's. Not that I haven't been curious. It's been a Route 1 landmark for me as in, "I've just passed Moody's so I should be there in half an hour" and a marvel in the summer when the large parking lot is filled to overflowing with "summer people" but it wasn't until today that I had the pleasure of eggs, home fries and coconut creme pie. Yum.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Life in a small town

As Jan said a little bit ago as she sat on the cold macadam next to the disabled dog, "THIS is a short story!". Alas, I am not O. Henry. I can only try to give the essence of what could be a great tale.
We were about a mile from home this evening, on our way back from dinner when Jan noticed what she thought might be an injured animal 'rolling' on the side of the road next to a snow bank. I have to confess, I didn't see it and wan't initially thrilled about backing up to find a sad disaster but I didn't have much of a voice in that decision as it was already in motion as I began to whine.
Sure enough there was a brown dog immobile against the snow bank, back to the road as we pulled into the driveway next to where it lay, got out of the car and saw it was breathing. Jan had a headlamp in the car (yes, she's prepared) so she got that while I ran to the nearby house and knocked on the door. It was the Mike's home. The man who faithfully plows our lane and driveways. The man whose plow and my car came within INCHES of colliding this morning as I slid down the icy hill on the lane on my way to yoga never expecting to see him coming up the hill. The man who (as I did a 180 to avoid hitting him) backed his truck hard into a snow bank to avoid hitting me and broke off his tailpipe and pieces of his sand spreader. The man who was not happy because I wasn't more cautious on an icy morning but who later stopped his now functioning truck to comment on my 'sweet girl', my aged Ella who was beside me as we made our way back home after returning by foot to see how he was and to apologize. 
Mike and his wife answered the door with their golden retriever, Abby, to find this stranger asking if they had a chocolate lab or knew of anyone who did. They didn't. But, Mike got on his hat and coat and drove his truck around the bend to where Jan and the dog were to shine his headlights on the scene and was the first to brave touching the dog and comforted him in a most loving manner. Jan had just called the local police who said they would send someone and Mike thought to grab an old coat and covered our injured new friend, who had a collar but no tags, which prompted Jan to remember that there was a blanket in her car which she got to add to his warmth. 
We three stood in the cold petting and talking to the lab while, intermittently, Mike's wife would holler updates from the house of which of their neighbors she had called, none of whom ended up knowing anything about this animal. Before the police officer arrived, Jan mentioned the name of our lane and Mike repeated that with the tone of one of the Three Stooges doing the "slowly I turn" skit and I responded with "Yes, it was ME, it was ME, and I'm sorry". He was great about it and only mumbled something about "let me tell you the difference between front wheel and four wheel drive" but that was quickly dropped. 
The officer arrived and called animal control who had to come from a few towns away so we all waited in the cold alternately comforting the lab who tried to sit up a few times but would quickly lie back down. 
Jan knew the police officer because he had been assigned to the high school when she taught there so they chatted about their common interests and we all tried our best to stay as warm as possible while we wondered who could hit a dog and continue on without stopping. 
Ann, the animal control officer, was fabulous. She and Mike lifted the dog into the front seat of her truck (she wanted him in the front so she could keep a better watch on him) and took him off to the emergency vet. We gave her our number to give us an update and are hoping to hear some good news in the morning. 

Update: Found out from Ann yesterday that our sweet chocolate friend made it to the vets but didn't make it much longer due to internal injuries. Very sad.

Down time

It's rare that I allow myself an afternoon of lazing, reading and general purposelessness but this has been one of them. This past work week was as intense as any have been in recent memory, though sometimes I think the sheer magnitude of possible consequences inherent in my daily profession is something that my brain compartmentalizes in order to keep moving forward, so who knows how many times I have forgotten days and weeks equally ferocious. Thus, I am here in front of this wood stove enjoying quiet and giving in to the languidness of a cloudy winter day.
Can't believe it's mid February and this is the first fire in the wood stove. There are a number of reasons for this:
  • a sweet lame old dog who can't make it up and down the basement stairs well at all
  • a new flat screen TV and streaming Roku box on the first floor
  • a winter that has so far included more weekends crafting (yay!) than being lazy
As much as I like and appreciate the pellet stove, it lacks something when compared to this. Now that I've shared, I have to get back to being lazy.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Pics from a February Saturday morning

Cold, clear, and beautiful.

Frost on the bushes from overnight fog on the river.

The farmer's market building is behind these mounds.

The downside to all of this: shoveling roofs (hard to see the guy doing just that in this iPhone pic) and messy floors - this was in the post office where I had to stop to pick up the mail since our carrier can't (won't?) get up the snowy lane.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Best Groundhog's Day Present Ever

A snow day!!!

What more could I ask for on this mid-winter holiday than lots of snow, an office shutdown, and a new sewing machine??? Oh yeah, electricity. Since moving to Maine I've come to appreciate ongoing electrical power during a storm having had multiple winter storms that have knocked out power for a couple of days. Sewing and music certainly would not be a part of this day if not for those wonderful electrons streaming through the lines to this house. There would be knitting and a woodstove though so all would not be lost, but I digress...

Started on Elizabeth Hartman's Crazy Nine Patch from Oh Fransson a couple of days ago but really got a chance to sink my pressor foot into it this morning. So fun but learned the hard way to pay attention. This pattern uses nine different squares and, if done correctly, each block should have one square of each fabric. First time around, that didn't quite happen. Second batch (out of three) of squares, I used my iPhone to take a pic of the top square before making the cut which helped out tremendously because by the time all nine squares are stitched and the seams are ironed, there are a number of ways one can get the stack out of order. Here's some of the squares in a rough configuration of the pattern (minus the carpet).

Did I mention that J. made corn pancakes for breakfast? They were so good! The recipe is from Smitten Kitchen, a wonderful cooking blog. Obviously, not fresh corn season so she used frozen which worked just fine.

Here's what it looks like out front
and the pile on the garage roof (so far) as seen from my craft room.
Back to patches...