Saturday, July 24, 2010

Better Than the Alternative

Time for another Mystery Post, in which I delve deep into my unlabeled photo archives to pull out a photo that could be of anything! Oh, the excitement!

Okay, so it's not actually all that exciting. But it's better than anything else I could think of today, as my thoughts all ran along the lines of, "OH MY GOD SO HUMID--SWEATING SINCE I GOT OUT OF BED--FACE ALL DAMP--DRIPPING--MISERYMISERYMISERY."

See? Aren't you glad I didn't do a whole post like that? Yes. Now, enjoy your photo.

OH LOOK! ANOTHER humid day!

That's a photo from August of 2008, when I think I was trying to capture the somewhat heavy fog I found when I woke up in the morning. Except somehow photos of fog never look very foggy. Why is that?

I will leave you to ponder that conundrum. Have a happy, humid Saturday, duckies!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Not My Best Effort

But the best you're going to get today, because sometimes, stringing together a coherent narrative, with, like, paragraph transitions and a point is just too much work. So with no further ado:

Blackberry jelly YAY! I finally got together 5 cups of blackberry juice, after many unhappy hours sweating and swearing in the blackberry brambles. Plus a thorn that has lodged itself in my right index finger, in a most inconvenient place where it hurts every time I pick something up, or push a button, or, well, anything. But I got my 5 cups of juice! Only to find the recipe for blackberry jelly actually calls for only 3 and 3/4 cups of juice. Whoops. Oh well. I have a head start on my next batch, I guess.

And on a related note, why do I always forget how long it takes to boil the water in the canner? Why do I never remember to start the water way ahead of time, so I'm not standing around the kitchen watching the pot? Which, as we know, will never boil. (Except it does. Eventually. After FOREVER.)

Rain YAY! Nice, soaking, not-beating-down-the-plants rain. That's what we're getting this morning. Which brings with it some welcome coolness. It will also bring with it some crazy weed growth when the sun comes out again. But I won't think about that today.

Sleep YAY! Cubby has been in a . . . difficult stage. For the past couple of weeks, he decided to dispense with this whole sleeping seven or eight hours at a stretch thing, instead deeming it necessary to wake up every three hours. Or more frequently. This, as you can imagine, has not been very good for my perkiness. In fact, it's been making me more or less miserable. Nothing I tried seemed to help. And then, last night, despite no change whatsoever in routine, feedings, timing, whatever, Cubby slept from midnight to 6 this morning. It's not exactly a full night's sleep, but I WILL TAKE IT.

Weekend YAY! Not that the weekend is appreciably different from the workweek for me, but I nevertheless hope you all have a good one. Peace out, poppets!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

No, Not THAT New York

Living in New York state means that whenever I tell people that I live in New York, they almost always assume that means New York City. And when I say no, not New York City, but upstate New York, they always want to know how far I am from New York City. My answer? Not close.

Not close in distance, and certainly not close in lifestyle. That's the funny thing about New York state: That small area in and around NYC colors the entire world's perception of the state, but the majority of the state is NOTHING like NYC. It's a lot of woods and farmland, with a few decaying cities that have been struggling since the end of the manufacturing that sustained them.

Nothing highlights this chasm between upstate and downstate more than The New York Times. Case in point: This little item in the Dining and Wine section yesterday, which reported that day lilies would be available for a limited time at the Greenmarket in NYC. For $4 a pint. Do you know how many pints of those day lilies are growing wild in our hedges and gullies? Hundreds and hundreds. And all this time, I just thought they were little better than weeds.

Maybe I should start an exporting business . . .

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


The power went out this morning at 6:15 when I was changing Cubby in preparation for his post-wakeup nap*. And since there was no power--and therefore no way to do laundry/make breakfast/get on the computer/insert any one of 50 things I do when Cubby is asleep that require electricity--there really seemed little point in doing anything other than getting back into bed myself. So I did.

And then, when Cubby woke up from his post-wakeup nap, the power was still out. The MiL had been planning to iron. Can't do that when there's no electricity for the iron. A. should have been working in his office. Can't do that when there's no electricity for the computer, fax, or phone. I needed to do a load of laundry. Can't do that when there's no electricity for the washing machine.

So instead we all sat around the living room watching Cubby play. The MiL actually boiled water on her camp stove to make coffee, but other than that, we just sat there.

The power came back on around 9 a.m., just in time for me to make breakfast before I passed out and for A. and the MiL to get cleaned up before work. But the little powerless vacation was kind of nice while it lasted.

So what about you, poppets? Does the power going out relax you or make you feel frantic?

* Don't ask ME why the child feels the need to go back to sleep an hour after waking up. Perhaps if he didn't wake up at an ungodly hour, he wouldn't be so tired. I've tried explaining this to him. He doesn't seem to grasp the concept.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Place To Be

The blanket on the floor is where all the cool kids hang out.

Monday, July 19, 2010

I Spy . . .

I went out to the garden yesterday to pick a few zucchinis to throw on the grill for dinner, and while I was out there I did my regular Tomato Check.

You know what I'm talking about, all you people that grow tomatoes (hi, Finn!): The obsessive monitoring of the tomatoes for any sign of orange indicating imminent ripeness. YOU know.

So I checked the Stupice, which are always the first to ripen and also were sporting some fairly large tomatoes that had been lightening up for the last few days. That's the stage before orange, in case you didn't know. Sure enough, those tomatoes were showing some orange hues, which means ripe tomatoes soon! YAY!

And then, as if the day couldn't get any better than that, I bent down to pull some weeds (ALWAYS with the weeds) and . . . what's that? On that far Stupice plant? Hidden WAAAAY under the foliage on the bottom? Is that . . . RED?

YES! It was the very first ripe tomato of the season! A sneaky, tiny premature tomato that was way too small and had therefore ripened before any of the others.

I am not too proud to tell you that I actually gasped and said, OUT LOUD, "Well, hello there, little tomato!"

Then I ran inside with The First Tomato, yelling the exciting news to A., who was upstairs with Cubby. He, dear man, exclaimed, "No way!" to the announcement of The First Tomato and actually came to the top of the stairs to view the lovely thing.

One of many, many reasons I love my husband. He not only puts up with, but actively supports, the Tomato Crazy.

Then I went to the kitchen to wash The First Tomato in the sink. While I was doing that, the MiL came home. So I went outside to show her The First Tomato before I ate it. Of course. And instead of being all, "Oh. A tomato. Neat," she was all, "Kristin! Congratulations! That's your earliest tomato ever!"

You see the wonderful people I live with. So kind to this crazy tomato lady, they are.

The MiL was correct, by the way. This IS the earliest tomato ever. It beats last year's First Tomato by 10 days, even.

It was, naturally, delicious. And, as a reward for their enthusiasm about The First Tomato and their wisdom in not even requesting a taste, I will gift The Second and Third Tomatoes to A. and the MiL.

I am nothing if not a generous soul.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

A Dog's Life

Leda the Fluffball demonstrates how to keep cool when it's 90 degrees and you're wearing a non-removable fur coat:
Hide out in the Pit of Despair and remain completely immobile.