Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Home

Home! 

We pulled in around 7:00 last night.
It seems strange to be here.
I had to work in the kitchen
 - 
you know, putting something together to eat.
(Can I claim that putting a 'Take and Bake' 
pizza in the oven is 'Cooking'?!)

We had a wonderful trip:

Rochester
Jacksonville
Pompano Beach
Aruba
Panama Canal
Costa Rica
Mexican Riviera
San Francisco
Home

I hope all of my east coast friends are dry and safe.

Happy Halloween.

Meet Zoe, the horse,
(as opposed to Zoe, my new Daughter-in-law!)
Zoe is visiting my house for a few weeks
with the black beasties.
She is dressing up for Halloween.


Zoe is wearing the hay bale costume!




Friday, October 12, 2012

Please Stand By



Living a Dream will be "Off the Air" or will only appear sporadically during the month of October. Dreaming is off on a number of adventures and will often have limited or no access to the World Wide Web. Can you imagine that?! Please be patient. Dreaming will come back on line whenever she can and will share her adventures with you at that time.


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Chats on the Farmhouse Porch: Reunions

Patrice hosted a High School reunion at her farm this weekend, and I attended my reunion , also at a farm - but since I didn't see Wendell there, it must have been a different reunion! And anyway, Wendell, I would have brought you carrots!


Patrice asked some interesting questions this week:

1. Do you like to have a variety of handbags, or are you happy with one old favorite?
I have a few pocketbooks - maybe a half-dozen - and all are quite small. I have never liked large purses and I am not "in to" designer bags.  Half the time I grab my license, a credit card, and a chapstick and stuff them in my pocket. 

2. Do you prefer to have your hair long or short?
I used to have long hair. I liked being able to tie it back or put it up, but I didn't like taking care of it.  I much prefer short hair when it comes to caring for it. I'd actually like having it shorter than it is right now, but Mr. Dreamy might object. 

3. Are you doing any crafts for fall?
I am not doing any crafts at the moment. I am on the road and didn't bring anything with me. 

4. What's your favorite sweetener to use?
I like the flavor of light brown sugar. Sometimes I use 'Sugar in the Raw' in my coffee as it has a hint of that flavor.

5. Tell me something interesting.
Would it interest you to know that I am writing this post on my iPhone? It isn't especially fun!

Visit Everyday Rurality to see more responses to Patrice's questions. 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Technical Difficulties

Dreaming is experiencing some technical challenges on the road. She wants to put up new posts with everything she is seeing, but the iPhone and iPad are not especially Blogger friendly when it comes to images. So, you will have to bear with her.
Yesterday was a highlight of my trip to Rochester, NY. I had the opportunity to literally crawl into my computer to visit a blog friend. Wouldn't that be a dreamy way of traveling? Mr. Dreamy and I went to The Skoog Farm and met Lori and Gary in person. Lori writes the Skoog Farm Journal. Many days Lori includes pictures of food on her blog, and the pictures look good enough to eat! We walked into her kitchen, and she didn't let me down! There was the food, just as I would have seen it on my computer! Hey, wait, you can come, too. Click on this link to see what I saw, and enjoyed. Our visit was wonderful. It felt like we were old friends...and we were, even though we have only met through our blogs. 
Thanks, Lori & Gary. We enjoyed our visit. 

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Lumps and Bumps - Sliced and Diced

Today I can finally let my breath out. Whooosh! I've been holding it for a while. Just over a month ago I noticed that my underarm was swollen. I consulted Dr. Internet and was told to wait for a few weeks to see if the swelling, most likely a swollen gland, went away. The swelling virtually went away, but I could feel, deep in the tissue, a dense nodule. So... off to the Doctor I trotted. She felt it and sent me for an ultrasound. The Radiologist insisted that I also have a mammogram. Today was my day of reckoning. On the one hand, I felt very positive about this and knew it was going to be some benign lump... but on the other hand - one never knows. That little sneaky devil, Doubt, kept creeping in causing moments of concern and an occasional sleepless episodes where I would invasion all manner of terrible things.
The nodule is a calcified lymph node. It is one of several, likewise calcified, in the string of lymph nodes that live in one's arm pit. It seems I am turning to stone! The Radiologist asked if I lived in the midwest. Apparently Histoplasmosis is endemic, there, and one of the lasting effects of this disease is calcified lymph nodes. I have not lived in the mid-west. After easing my anxiety by saying the lymph nodes can stay there and are doing no harm, the Radiologist shook his head in puzzlement. Not only did I not live in the mid-west, but only the lymph nodes on the left side of my body are calcified.

Lumps & Bumps - They look like something out of the twilight zone!

Regardless of the puzzle, I left the imaging center feeling lighter in spirit than when I had arrived. My worst fears have been assuaged. What now? What to do next? Is it important to find the cause of this strange condition? Is it a strange condition? I guess I'll learn more when I have a follow-up appointment with my Doctor in November.
Maybe all of this hasn't bothered me so much, today, because of 'the tooth'. Have you ever noticed how when you have some sort of problem, it is often forgotten, or at least loses significance, when you acquire another? Take, for example, the throbbing of an annoying cut on your finger where you stupidly mishandled a knife while slicing tomatoes, and then, the pain of that is erased when you drop a bottle of mayonnaise on your toe? Well, 'the tooth', is that new sort of pain that is eclipsing the other and taking my mind off any level of concern, at least for the moment! The tooth has a long,  sordid history. It began, innocently enough, with a diagnosis of a strained ligament. Then, it turned out the tooth was toast. I had to have an implant. It has been a lengthy procedure. Finally, just over a month ago, the process was completed when my shiny, new porcelain crown was installed on the implant hardware. Everything seemed fine until I went back to the dentist last week to have the bite adjusted a bit. This is almost a rerun of the original story, except that implants don't have ligaments, and thus don't adjust to subtle changes in your mouth, and so they can be too high and feel like they are hitting too hard on the opposing teeth. The Dentist pared off millimeters of the porcelain. The bite felt better. Then, he showed me the X-ray. He pointed to a little white bump below the gum line. He explained that he thought it might be some cement left from putting the crown on the implant. He couldn't reach the cement with his pick, and suggested insisted I see Dr. Perio (whom you met in a recent post) who did the implant. He emphasized the importance of doing so, as the cement could lead to bone loss, which could cause the failure of the implant. So, I trotted over to see Dr. Perio. He began by saying how special my dentist was to admit to having caused a potential problem. He said it is very rare for a Dentist to do so. Not only that, the Dentist was footing the bill. But it is my mouth - and my anxiety - and my pain! Dr. Perio numbed the area around the tooth, sliced the gum from the east, sliced the gum from the west, and scraped off the offending cement. He put in some bone graft material and stitched me back up. Oh... the pain. Not to mention that I feel like I have a Walrus mustache in my mouth with stitches hanging over the tooth!
So today has not been on the top ten list of great days in retirement. I've been poked and prodded and squished. I've been sliced and diced and stitched. I think I'll sit in my chair and pout in my own misery. Tomorrow will be better, for sure!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Not My Job

Mr. Dreamy had a tooth that wasn't feeling quite right.
He had recently had some work performed,
so he went back to Dr. Perio.


Dr. Perio took a look and said,
"It's not my job,
It's not something I do,
You'll have to see Dr. Endo instead."


So off he went to see Dr. Endo.
Dr. Endo did some tests and looked at x-rays
and declared that Mr. Dreamy needed a root canal.
He didn't let Mr. Dreamy hesitate.
He didn't let Mr. Dreamy go home and think about it...
He did it right away. Right then. Right there.


But, when it came to putting a permanent 'seal' on the
hole he had made to do the root canal he said,
"It's not my job,
It's not something I do,
You'll have to see Dr. Dentist instead."


So, off he went to see Dr. Dentist
to have a permanent repair made.

Does this seem odd to you?
All the dentists have had the same basic training.
Dr. Endo had to put a temporary seal on the tooth.
How hard would it be for him to
mix up permanent goo to put in a permanent filling at that time?

It seems like some sort of collusion to us.

Have a Busy and Productive Day

One of my favorite elementary school principals used to end each morning's announcement telling students and teachers alike, to have a busy and productive day. Well, yesterday, Dreaming lived up to that ideal! She was going from dawn 'til dusk!
It was sunny. There were only a few puffy clouds in the sky. It warmed up during the day to 80 degrees.... but the weather predictions were saying we'd get down to 28 last night (that ol' weatherman was pretty accurate... our thermometer said we got down to 29). I wanted to get all of the outside projects taken care of before the weather changed and before we left on our trip. So, Dreaming was as busy as a one-armed barber with hives yesterday. Lucky for her, Mr. Dreamy had to get up at 5:00 AM, so she got a head start on the day, too!
The deer (more on them in another post) have been rubbing on our new, young trees, so every tree now has a cage of wire around it. Each tree also received a deep drink of water.


Mama Boots now has a ramp going up to her escape hatch in the barn, so the bales of hay that used to be her launch platform can be used to feed the black horses (plus one) who will be coming back to visit while we are away.

Braided wire fencing has been put around a scrap pile in the paddock and around the septic tank in the front pasture. A few panels were moved to fence off the manure spreader and drag harrow in the back yard. Now the horses will have a few more places they can graze with less chance of getting into something that might hurt them. Wire fencing was put back up in the front yard so the horses can have access to the approximate one acre of grass out there... but won't be able to get to our cars or gardens.

I walked the perimeter of the pasture fence and repaired one place where the deer had pulled the top wire down, but the wire going to the ground is still making a snapping sound - so maybe I need to do a bit more investigation.

I drained and detached all of our hoses from their spigots. The hoses have been coiled. Do you coil your hoses up after each use? I used to, but this summer it seems like I was watering something every day. It hardly seemed worth it to take time to coil up the hose when I would be using it again in so few hours.

I cut, or pulled up, our tomato plants and brought them in to hang in the garage. I've never tried ripening tomatoes this way, but was told that the green tomatoes will continue to ripen on the vine. (During this time I also had an email conversation with Gail, At the Farm. She suggested digging up the tomatoes and bringing them inside. We tried. They were so top heavy they kept falling out of the pot. I gave up in frustration... perhaps with a little exhaustion thrown in to temper my mood!)


The tomatoes were hopelessly entwined around each other and the tomato cages. I finally just yanked the plants up, cage and all. The cages actually made handy tomato plant hangars when placed over the top of the dolly!

I also collected green tomatoes in a box to let them ripen. Nope... I won't do green tomato relish - that's not my thing... I don't think! I pulled most of the carrots, turnips and beets and brought them in as well. I'm letting some of the root veges remain in the garden for a while longer.

As I was finishing up in the garden the front began to move in. The temperature began to drop and just as I walked into the house, the front hit us with wind gusts up to 35 mph! Perfect timing! The perfect end to a dreamy day!


Whew! It was quite a day! Dreaming visited dreamland pretty early last night! And, now, another day has begun.

I hope you have a busy and productive day!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

More About Harvests

My friend at Moondance Ranch put up a post about her fall harvest. Unless you've lived on the high prairies (she lives at 6,800 feet while I'm at 6,400) you may not understand just how difficult it is to have any luck with gardens. And I'm convinced, it's all about luck out here!

What with hail:


And temperature extremes:
(Forecast for today; October 3, 2012)


And monthly rainfall measured in hundredths of an inch:

Denver Precipitation
July:     .48
August: .11
(National Weather Service Data)

And wind that blows howls:


A few carefully selected, or more liked, neglected,
vegetables manage to do more than survive... they thrive:


It looks like tonight might be the end of our garden. And if not tonight, temperatures below freezing are forecast for the weekend. We have had our share of squash, a few root vegetables and more than our share of tomatoes. My garden has been quite productive, at least in comparison to past harvests. But, I certainly wouldn't be able to eke out an existence from it if it weren't for the grocery store down the street!

Farewell summer! Winter is on its way!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Chats on the Farmhouse Porch

I want to clone today. We are having the most perfect fall day. It begin with a bit of chill this morning. The sun is shinning. The temperatures have risen to the 70's. There isn't a cloud in the sky. Many trees have changed their outfits for fall and the colors are almost blindingly bright. Oh, what a spectacular day!!

Before I begin chatting with Patrice and other Blog friends, I need to acknowledge and thank two new followers:
  • Brenda writes Mamaw's Place. I met her through Chats on the Farmhouse Porch.
  • Karen writes 21 Wits. I met her through Saturday Centus posts.
Thanks for following along!

Now, let's chat! Patrice asks:

1. If you could instantly play a musical instrument, which one would it be?
I'm not certain there is any one particular instrument I'd like to be able to master in a moment. I probably should say the violin, since I never acquired much expertise with it. I began playing the violin when my son entered the youth orchestra as an 6 year-old. His instructor handed me a violin and explained that students progress faster when a parent learns to play with them. That may have been true in the beginning, but Son #2's skills quickly outpaced and surpassed mine. No matter how much I practiced, playing the violin and making it sound pleasant was very, very difficult.


2. Do you have a fireplace, wood-stove, or pellet-stove?We have a gas fireplace. I think we turned it on one time last winter. It is placed in a position where one really can't see it from seats in the living room, so it doesn't add much in the way of ambience. But, I still like having it. I like the convenience of flicking the fire on and off with a switch. Yeah, lazy me! In the 70's we heated with a wood burning stove. I liked that, but it was a lot of work, and parts of our house were always very cold while other areas were very warm.

3. What's your favorite addition to brownies?
I'd like to have those brownies with some caramel, please!

4. Do you use much bottled water?Now that we have a water softener and our water no longer has the taste of heavy minerals, I use very little bottled water. I never have liked the taste of it. I prefer my tap water.

5. How much did you weigh as a newborn?
I don't know what I weighed when I was born. I think I was somewhere between 6 & 7 pounds.

To join in the chat, or to read other's responses, click on the link to Everyday Rurality's blog below:



Everyday Ruralty



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