Saturday, October 31, 2009

Fat and Happy

My brother is on a quest for the perfect recipe for baking powder biscuits. He's been experimenting at my parents' house. And I am here to sample each and every batch. In the interests of quality control, of course.

It's a hard job.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Meanwhile, Back at Blackrock . . .

The puppy is continuing to find new and inventive ways to sneak into the sheep barn to drag the curing lamb hides out into the grass. She is not endearing herself to A. Bad idea on her part, since he's the one feeding her.

And I? I am being forced to Target tomorrow to begin a baby registry. My mother is relentless. Well-intentioned, but relentless. Target on a Saturday? In a big city? Pray for me.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Vacation Mindset

Yesterday morning at about 3, I was awakened by strong winds and a very brief, but loud, rainstorm. This being Tucson, it didn't last long enough to make any significant moisture, but it was loud enough to wake me up since my window was open. In my hazy, half-awake state, the first thing I thought of was, "I hope the dogs are okay in the pasture."

It took me a second to realize that there is no pasture here, there are no dogs, and rain in the night did not mean I would get my feet soaked trekking up to the pasture to let the chickens out of their coop in the morning. So THIS is how the other (urban) half lives, huh?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Fun with Fashion

You would probably never have guessed this about me, but I'm not much of a shopper. I KNOW. SHOCKING.

However. I am reaching a critical stage in my wardrobe in which I have been left with very few items of clothing that cover both me and the man-cub. And so rather than see me spend the rest of my pregnancy in sweatpants and A.'s wool sweaters (yeah, I probably would have mostly done that), my mother and sister decided it was time to get out the whip and force me to the mall. Where we spent three hours--THREE HOURS--in maternity stores and maternity sections. Where they pulled out top after top, most of which I rejected as completely hideous (because they WERE). There was also a very frustrating search for a pair of black pants that was ultimately victorious at Old Navy, of all places.

Here's the thing about shopping for maternity clothes: It's not fun. Especially if you're not much of a shopper to begin with. I mean, the purpose of regular shopping is to get clothing that you feel you look pretty good in. That's not really the point of maternity shopping. The point of maternity shopping is to get clothes that will still cover you in five months when your belly has swollen to alarming proportions. To this end, maternity stores helpfully provide a little pillow you can tie around your mid-section, so you have an idea of what you might look like as you approach the finish line. And as to that, I say: YIKES.

But thanks to the relentless prodding by my mom and sister--bless their drill sergeant hearts--I managed to procure several tops and one pair of pants that fit. And I only had to take a two-hour nap to recover.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

What a Waste

Turns out I didn't need to use the dryer at Blackrock the other day after all, since I had to do a load of laundry immediately after arriving at my parents' house. There was a tragedy in my suitcase involving some jars of homemade applesauce and pickled jalapenos. It was ugly. It was messy. I will probably be finding shards of glass in my underwear all week.

So, my thanks to the careful luggage handlers of Delta Airlines! But at least the pickled beets made it intact. That would have been a real nightmare.

Monday, October 26, 2009

My Mother Loves You

Just so you know, I just entered my parents' home less than an hour ago (and yet have already managed to consume no less than four chocolate truffles--this is a great place to visit), and my mom told me I had to write to "my faithful." I presume she meant you. I've never considered that term, but I do enjoy the religious cult connotations.


Hi! Here I am! I survived both legs of my journey, plus a mad dash through the Atlanta airport (that place is pure craziness, y'all--ain't no denyin'). AND, I didn't encounter a single person who was coughing or sneezing or generally exhibiting any signs of swine flu.

And here I thought it was a national emergency.


So here I sit in the desert hacienda, socks off, short sleeves, watching my mother prepare soup despite the 85 degree temperature. And back at Blackrock? There are four lamb hides salted down in the barn and I bet the woodstove is going.

I'm good with where I am for now.

Sunday, October 25, 2009


Okay, I did it. I gave in. I used the clothes dryer yesterday.


See, I had set for myself a totally arbitrary and ridiculous goal of not using the dryer before November. No, I don't know why I make these rules for myself. Because I'm a control freak, I guess. Anyway, I was doing so well. I was waiting until we had a sunny day to wash anything, putting the laundry in the washing machine when it was still dark so I could hang it at first light and take advantage of every available minute of the shortening sunlight hours, putting any still-damp clothes to hang inside on the clothes rack.

Hanging laundry outside in the fall is something of an art.

But then . . . well, it rained a lot of last week. I did laundry at the beginning of the week, when we had a couple of good days. This would be okay normally, as I would just hold off on washing them until good weather. Except I have a rather limited wardrobe at the moment, as the Life Within grows ever larger and renders most of my clothing obsolete. So I sort of have to wear the same things over and over. And the real kicker: I'm leaving tomorrow for Arizona.


So, since I'm going to Arizona tomorrow and needed to pack today, and a few things I wanted to take with me were dirty, I surrendered to the ease of the clothes dryer.

And now that I've told you I'm leaving for a week, you probably don't care at all about my use of the clothes dryer (if you ever cared to begin with) or the fact that the lambs are going away to be boxed up for consumption today (SURPRISE AGAIN!). Instead, I'm sure you're now fretting about whether I'll be posting anything while I'm gone. Because your life is surely a sad and lonely thing without the cheeriness and sunshine I bring to you on a daily basis.


Anyway, not to worry, poppets. I'm not going to the back of beyond--just to my parents' house. Where they have many wonderful modern innovations, such as Wi-Fi and a jacuzzi bathtub. I'll be in touch, have no fear.

Until later, duckies!