Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Chorus Line

Don't laugh. THEY ARE WARM! I made my almost patented "FuzzButts" polar fleece riding pants with an outer lycra shell so we horsewomen can play with our horses and stay warm and then FEED our horses without wearing a lot of hay.

Helga was mesmerized by the performance ..... fleece. I just love pink!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

After Christmas....comes ice fishing

The best part about Christmas break from school was that it was Christmas, and the excitement, and presents, and the boredom that followed. We weren't used to having so many days off the routine so the next thing that had to happen was:


Eventually mumsy would TELL daddy that she needed her sanity again and PLEASE get these kids out of the house.

Piling into the old truck, Dad would take us "up nort" to a lake far enough away that we wouldn't be tempted to come home for lunch. Preferably a big frozen lake about a half hour away, and by way of the old truck, it probably took us and hour to get up to Clam Lake. Once we got to our destination, we found plans had been made that we could occupy a friends ice house--which is the common description of a building that resembles an outhouse but where the holes are used for the object of catching fish.

We rode through the icy ruts to a little settlement WAY across the vast expanse of icy tundra and found our spot where we spent, in my mind, about four days waiting for something to bite.

It did BITE. But I digress.

Dad would dump alcohol fuel in the hole to keep the water from freezing over the holes and the fumes from the heater were nauseating. We were bored and cold but we kept at it all day long until finally we headed for home. I have never been so cold in my life as during those endless ice fishing trips.

This photo is deceiving because it looks like we were happy with our catch; however, if you look closely you will see frozen feet, lifeless hands and a couple of very frozen smiles.

What wouldn't we trade to do that again?

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Cowboy Christmas

Long ago and far away a couple of kids got the ultimate little cowboy outfits and their six-shooters!

Now, class, let's point out what is inappropriate about this picture.

Talk about politically incorrect:


Stereotypical role models!

Children near a wood burning fireplace - DANGER!

Flammable fabrics!

Lead based tinsel!

Non-recyclable plastic skirt fringe!

How did we survive it all?

Notice Anything New Dear?

I have been fiddling around with updating my contact lenses since the middle of October. The bifocal feature of the new contacts was actually good, but the wearability wasn't. What's the point if you can't put 'em in and go all day without a hassle? I'm getting too aged to have the patience anymore to put up with annoyance. So I gave up after the 60 day trial period and opted to get a new pair of glasses instead.

I was pretty excited they showed up so fast, in a daring color, on Christmas eve. I put them on and just waited for the rave reviews from Don.

Four days later.......I'm still waiting. He has to notice, doesn't he? He knew they were coming. I have sat directly in front of him and batted my eyelashes and......nothing. I realize I could have just SAID something, and I almost did many times, but now it's just tickling my weird sense of humor. He does know, and doesn't like them, but doesn't want to mention it? Do I know? Very interesting especially since about a week ago, he asked me to "Wait. Come here. What's that thing on your neck?"

"It's called an AGE SPOT!" Thanks for picking up on that, sweets.

I suppose he will eventually read this post and say he knew all along, but, in the meantime I find it interesting that he hasn't noticed I look just like Sarah Palin.

Friday, December 25, 2009

A Christmas Day in March

This Christmas Day is to feature the blue end of the mantle and this neat card I got from my cousin Ann and her husband Steve. They live in Memphis, and thanks to Facebook we reconnected after many years.

The last time I saw Ann was in ... 1991? After mom died, dad wanted to take a trip in the big red van to visit his sister, Ann's mom. It was a great reunion for them both and I was so happy to have been part of it. Seeing Ann and Karen, all grown up and married was great fun, too. It doesn't really seem like almost 20 years ago.

It was quite an adventure--I drove the Great River Road all the way to New Orleans with a guy who was getting started on the path to alzheimers. We spent a couple days there poking around, it was in March and well after Mardi Gras so it was pretty calm. The Great River Road was interesting--it went right through the industrial areas of most cities, didn't follow the river exactly, but we sure saw lots of country. Following the route out on the flats of some Illinois farm trail--now that was memorable. As we traveled farther south we met up with spring! The flowering azaleas and magnolia blossoms were beautiful and such a treat after having left snow and ice up in Wisconsin. Bud got to see his old home on Union Street in Memphis and Bourbon Street once we got to NO.

Today, a rainy Christmas, looks just like March.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Seeing Double

It has been a treat to see this duo most evenings at the bird feeder. These are probably two of the little fellas who were here last year because they seem to know right where to go to get the best goodies.

Of course, boys being boys, sometimes there is a little tussle about taking turns!

I'm so happy they made it through deer season.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

All things bright

Christmas preparations are continuing at Catfish Corner. I made more cookies this week--sunbuckles, rosettes, cream wafers and then tackled the swedish meatballs. Next on the list are the fun quick things---chocolate covered pretzels and peanut brittle and the tom & jerry batter!

It's good to take a little break and read the christmas cards and letters that have been arriving and sampling a few of those baked yummies.

Friends children and grandchildren are growing up so fast! It's so great to be remembered with the gift of cards and photos. Thanks so much!

Everyone has clam shells as Christmas decorations, don't they?

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A Knotty Spirit

Don cut me some cedar branches that were full of blue berries and I thought they would look nice on our mantle. I have loads of vintage glass ornaments so they went into my glass vessels since my teensy pencil tree can only hold so many.

I got a chance to move things around and appreciate this cute little owl that is prominent in the knotty pine paneling.

I have a feeling this feature was by design as a builder would certainly have appreciated the unique beauty.

We have several other little faces on our walls and, and even though wood paneling is "out" and painted walls are "in", I couldn't bear to hide them under paint.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Good Day for a Blizzard

The wind really howled last night and we woke up to a good 12" of snow. After we got the birds and animals fed, we made ourselves the lumberjack breakfast before we went out to move snow.

Don spent several hours on the tractor and decided to save some for later. The next two days are supposed to be super cold so maybe over the weekend I can put the horses in the round pen and then he can clear out a lounging area.

After they had their breakfast the ponies decided to get a little snow on their coats. No idea why they like standing out there in the wind when they have a cozy box stall to stay in.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Dancing With Horses

You will notice the romaine greens are growing nicely in the AeroGarden.

I have Susan Boyle's CD in the forefront because it is WONDERFUL! I have followed her story from her breathtaking performance that launched her career.

The first two songs--"Wild Horses" and "I Dreamed A Dream" are so breathtaking that the first night I had her recording I was inspired to go out in the moonlight to dance with my horses. They responded by thinking I was a crazy woman. Which I am. But, I love the feeling of being moved by music.

Dreaming dreams is a worthwhile pursuit no matter what your age is. Just don't be afraid to look silly in the process. The horses will love it.

Naughty Kitty Sam

She knows it's the rule. NO CATS ON THE TABLE. However comma no one in our family seems to know this.

She was being so deliberately naughty--not totally on the table, but partly on the chair. And she knows this and posed quite perfectly while I photographed her in her own state of defiance to the establishment.

What a gorgeous creature.

If I were that cute, I could sit on the table, too.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Seasonal Scene

Mr. Anderson donned his blaze orange and headed down to Catfish Corner in pursuit of the Mr. Mossback last Sunday morning.

We have seen several deer in "the grove" and had the treat to see a doe with her youngster in tow sniffing a scrape. It was just a minute or two when the little one ran off in a big hurry. Mother continued sniffing.

Enter a HUGE buck to meet the missus and he was impressive! Don and I were in the house watching this scene unfold. We were both in awe and so intently following the ritual that when they trotted off (presumably to consummate their brief love affair) we were both wondering why we didn't grab the camera -- or -- oh, yeah, -- I guess Don could have found his rifle. (If he were at all interested in THAT part of the hunt!)

We are pretty sure this doe and fawn are the same ones who have been up by the barn eating the pumpkins and leftover chicken grains. Such a tiny fawn and mom isn't much bigger.

A couple days have passed and this evening we saw a group of four does in the grove with the little fawn in tow. Those four crossed the creek but for some reason the little one went off in the opposite direction.

I hope you find your mummy, little one.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Farewell Fellow.....

As in, take care, dear. The 9-day deer gun season begins on Saturday and this guy will have a target on him. He has lots of space to hide at our place. I don't know if Don will hunt or not. He usually takes a gun out for a walk, if that qualifies. As he puts it, "I've done enough hunting in my time." The moss backs seem to get this way over time, while some never seem to outgrow the need to kill something.

I was raised in a home where deer season was a family event and a successful hunt would feed our family for the year. These days more hunters just go for the killing part, the pictures and the party, and get rid of the deer by "giving" it to anyone who will take it. The phone calls will start coming with hunters trying to get rid of deer who mistakenly think they are doing us a big favor. Don steadfastly refuses these offers which means taking responsibility for their problem. Few seem to want the task of actually taking care of the meat and using it with the gratitude it should certainly deserve.

I'm not an anti-hunting, tree-hugging liberal. (Actually I do hug trees.) I just feel empathy for the creatures and how vastly different the whole enterprise is now. To the state it's all about money and selling licenses, to unscrupulous hunters it's a greed fest, to the non-hunters out there going through the motions of carrying a lethal weapon it is an accident waiting to happen. It's not just deer who will die in the next nine days.

Bless those who can participate with sportsmanship.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Planting the Winter Garden

I won this cool tabletop AeroGarden at the Refuge Farms silent auction last Saturday. I had my eye on one of these for a long time, but couldn't justify the $150 price tag just to grow some lettuce. I guess it was meant to be that this one was donated to the cause and I got to take it home for significantly less.

I planted it yesterday with varieties of romaine lettuce and because the plants grow hydroponically I should be harvesting leaves in three weeks! That should be at about the time the greenhouse will freeze up for good and end my outdoor gardening season.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Moon over Catfish Corner

This is normally the kind of shot I put up for the winter but it arrived this morning and it was here for just a minute or two.

The little white blip at the top is actually the moon, but so tiny it looks like a star.

The lavender pink sky turned to gray in a blink--embarrassed at being photographed so early in the morning.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Long Shadows

I spent some time Saturday morning out with the ponies before I left for the Refuge Farm Gala. The sun was bright--too bright for good photos -- but turned out great for shadows.

I picked up my friend Katie in Hager City and we headed to the U of M Equine Center for an evening with the supporters of Sandy Gilbert and the Refuge Farms. Uniquely, the event was in the arena! Half held horses and half beautifully decorated in true Gala style. Sandy brought five of The Herd and told their stories with such passion. The rapt audience viewed a touching video of the story of "Laddee the Little Belgian Mare" who was one of the horses in attendance. Later, Don Hoglund, DVD, spoke about his work rescuing horses from the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. A silent auction held a wide variety of items that were donated to the cause and it was hard to decide what to bid on there were so many wonderful offerings. (Note to self: next year bring more money!) We had a wonderful catered dinner and ended the evening with a live auction of generously donated works of art and goods from sports memorabilia to gorgeous quilts.

It was a late night for this old girl by the time I got home, but the staff of volunteers worked into the night to take down the show and head home with some horses and will be heading back to St. Paul for the last of the horses today.

I could go on, but suffice it to say it was a wonderfully well organized and attended event. It was apparent that this was a "family reunion" celebration for the volunteers and supporters and included many of the vets who have cared for the refuge herd through various operations and procedures. Hugs galore at this love fest!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

A Glimpse of Lake Pepin

Now that the leaves have nearly all fallen we can catch a little glimpse of Lake Pepin from our alfalfa field. The hills in the distance are on the Minnesota side of the creek and it's a pretty view any day of the week.

The new seeding has gotten a good start and has come in thick with the timely rains. A nice blanket of snow would be nice to protect it from winter--but that can wait for awhile!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Pretty Colors of Fall Are Leaving

The leaf report!

As you can see from the title photo, the colors of fall have left us. I got a couple shots before the leaves blew off in our brisk winds.

A couple lonely fall raspberries are trying to ripen in these last cool days. Other branches of green ones have little chance to mature.

Our gigantic hard maple tree is still holding on to its palm sized leaves.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Mutant of the Year Award

I know everyone has been waiting for this one! The Mutant of the Year is a coveted award to the most deformed carrot of the crop. Last year I had several "little men" crop up in the......crop. This year was special because there was only one candidate.

The quadruplet carrot was of massive dimensions and wrinkles. It reminds me of the radishes that went far and beyond and looks like thighs that have gone far and beyond.

So it's not really mutant, just chubby and cute! There are four distinct legs from the one top which are distinctive, nonetheless.

And Cheyenne thought they were delicious.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Pegasus and Heroes

I had the privilege of visiting Sandy Gilbert at her Refuge Farms last Saturday in Spring Valley, Wis. and as this is the time of year the Great Square of Pegasus is visible in the sky, this is where my promised story of Pegasus and Heroes begins.

Pegasus as the mythical winged horse and the Hero is in Sandy Gilbert. I have always thought of her as the Mother Theresa of horses. She takes in the ill, the abused, and binds their wounds and heals their hungry frames. As I was graciously invited into her clean and orderly barns, I could drink in the harmony of comfort, food and water, and the renewal of equine souls. The first barn held those who were suited to be with each other. Healthy and ambulatory. The next barn took in those who were so elderly and/or blind (the Helen Keller Wing) that they were best among others who had the same afflictions. The huge gentle horses that Sandy guides outside to the sunshine, and treats with such affection were once scorned subjects receiving the abuse only humans can dole out. Yes, I am out of my comfort zone -- which is where most people would be. And that's why it is so easy for people to tune it out.

Sandy is pictured with Babee Joy--who you can see is a big baby--like 18 hands worth and 4 feet across her massively voluptuous butt! A rare blue roan who is truly a gentle giant. She was born of a PMU mare. I found myself explaining to a visiting friend what a PMU foal is--not many people know. You can read all about it on this link. Anyone who is taking Premarin, or other menopausal drugs should know where their false relief is coming from. I accidentally took a picture where the flash triggered and sent the horses into a fast retreat. Sandy patiently explained that some of these horses have been abused with electricity. The electric prods that sent them from one place to another have made permanent marks on their psyche. I felt sorrow for them. In a minute they returned to their food and the comfort Sandy brings to them.

I hope my readers will follow the link to Refuge Farms because there is a wealth of information about all of the 18 horses who reside there. I wouldn't be doing justice to describe their stories here. Each horse has a story--and each one is a unique individual. Ironically it takes people to pass along their stories along to other people. And we hope people who care about their existence will be as touched as I was about their stories.

Sandy will be telling an important stories at the University of Minnesota Equine Center on November 7th at the Refuge Farms Gala fundraiser event. She will be joined by supporters to hear the story of Dr. Don Hoglund, DVM, who was rescued wild horses living on the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.

Sandy is the Hero and all of the other horses at Refuge Farms are the winged horses, like Pegasus. Sandy, of course, is not a horse. She has the wings of an angel.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

A New Trick

The pedestals have been a favorite for the ponies. Put two feet on, Neat--put on four feet--GET A TREAT! That has been going on all summer and Cerra (in the photo) has been taking this all in. Unfortunately, she has taken it to the next level and has now been climbing into the feeder bid by the barn.

I went out to feed this morning and found her hoof droppings in the feeder bin. Hmmm.

I had an hour this afternoon with Cerra and we rode around in the pasture, playing patterns and having fun after our long break. She was really good on the weave pattern and was reading my body and responding well without reins. We went in the round pen for figure eights at liberty. She was all dressed up in her saddle and bridle while I tried directing her with the fragment of a slashed plastic grocery bag and one of my appendages. She was OK with it. But....

She is the most deliberate horse--her actions are like "and you want me to do this?.... because?" and then she will do it--in the slowest of terms and will question my sanity at every turn. The left brain introvert in it's most absolutely questioning state ----just like her mummy. She is insulted by the most basic of aids and thinks it is beneath her to have to do anything that is asked. Why should she be asked? She offers---when no one is looking.

Our horses are our mirrors.

Early this evening I heard this commotion out at the barn and she is STANDING in the feeder bin and pawing at the plywood covering. Then she moved to the other side and did the same thing. Then she went back to the original spot and tried AGAIN! This continued for several turns.

The feeder bin is a 4 x 8 box that Don built to push up against the outside of the barn where the water line travels. It was designed to be a buffer against the water line next to the workshop and we have always stuffed it full of straw on the back and underneath. Then we put plywood over the box and used it as a feeding station under the protection of the overhanging eve.

Cerra is putting this idea to the ultimate test by climbing it like the pedestal. I don't think it is a horse-proofed concept.

Look outside tonight. The Great Square of Pegasus is to be observed overhead in October. Look for a lopsided square. It is to inspire poets and heros. I'll tell you more about this later!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Wild Horse on Glass

I have been itching to get etching on this particular glass vessel. I had it in mind to do a horse with a wild mane and today was the day.

I am practicing my stage blasting techniques and wanted to use my small blasting unit for some details. However, I found out that Paisley found the air hose was the perfect prey. Several holes were bitten into the line that went to the foot pedal. It would still work, but it definitely needs to be replaced. Thanks, Pais.

I like how this turned out and will be planning more projects as time permits.

More proof of global warming

I'm not sure when we last saw sunshine and I am fairly sure we won't be seeing it today.

The 40 degree days have been mighty chilly. The ponies have sprouted nice winter coats that seem to get fuller everyday. It looks like they gain about 50 pounds a day as their coats start to fill out!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Quick Draw - the finale

This was my three hours effort at the Quick Draw yesterday at the Wings Over Alma event.

It isn't big, just a 8"x16" canvas that I did the oil painting on. It was bid on by my friend, Sandy Madsen, who visited here last night, but ultimately won by another bidder at the silent auction after the fund raiser spaghetti dinner.

It was won by former Buffalo County Judge Gary Schlosstein.

Winter arrived..briefly

The colors had only started to bloom when the snow came in this morning. The poor little buffy hen was hiding under the burning bush as the snow was falling this morning.

It didn't pile up in our area, but up the hills on the bluffs it did stick and everything was white.

60's are predicted for the weekend, so our little taste of winter won't last long.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Moving Day

I had to move the thirteen layers to the main hen house today. The 26 Cornish broilers are over twice as big as the little Gold Stars and I was getting worried they might be overtaken by them. Tough chicks! I borrowed this picture of a mature Gold Star chicken. Ours are still in their preadolescent stage at five weeks old. They still have the remnants of baby fluff and are still mottled. Several of them are quite friendly and will let me scoop them up on my palm and sit on my knee while I say appropriate chickie type words of encouragement to them.

I felt it was only right to take them to their hen house so they can get bonded to their space and the rest of the flock. The Broilers will have only another few weeks with us. I don't want to traumatize those little Goldies who will be left behind after the others are asked to spend winter in the freezer.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Quick Draw

I have an event coming up on Sunday that I am participating in. It's at the Wings Over Alma and it's an artists "Quick Draw" which give us each three hours to start and finish a work of art. The finished pieces (dry or not!) are then put on silent auction at the spaghetti dinner later that evening. The fund raiser has been done for a couple years now, but this is the first time I am involved in it.

I figured that I can do anything after last weekends event!

The best part of all is that our friend, Sandy Madsen, is coming from Luck on Sunday and will have dinner with us and stay over in the lavish Catfish Corner Guest Suite! (Now complete with that new rustic denim and bandana rag quilt!)

New Looks For Fall

Time to put summer away. The fall colors are overtaking Catfish Corner and we are donning a new look.

The blog has a new background color. Evidently a black background is too hard to read on lots of computers so I hope this makes it more readable for y'all.

We have both been nursing sore throats and sinus headaches this week. I hate to say it, but a good frost would take care of all the pollen, mold and mildew and would finally finish off the last pesky flies.

I got to have two hours of PONY TIME yesterday! The first in a couple weeks. It was really nice out and after so many rainy days it was fun to play. Chy and I had an hour of ground, pedestals and trailer practice. (No, not yet.) Cerra is getting four feet on the short pedestal and Emmy is volunteering to do it, but not when I ask. We went through a whole pouch of treats and fun was had by all.

The weather is expected to be 20 degrees below normal in the days to come so it looks like it's time to get out the woolies.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Fall Art Tour - The Wrap Up

What a great weekend it was! The weather was iffy all three days, but it didn't stop about 300 really nice people from visiting my studio at Catfish Corner. I talked myself hoarse--I'm just not used to talking that much. (When I talk to myself I try to do it silently!)

Our visitors really liked the chickens and geese, they spoiled the horses with constant attention, and some folks were even treated to hoot owls chatting in the pines. What a wonderful experience to meet so many great people. Some of my high school friends, Frederic 1974, and Norm & Jan and Sarah, surprised me by making the two hour trip! I wish they could have stayed longer so we could catch up! Veteran studio elf, Loie, and Wanda were here as well --it was so fun to have friends visit. Just like the old days!

The "Gourd Fest" was a big hit and thanks to those who made generous contributions I have $216 in donations to pass along to Sandy Gilbert and her Refuge Farms for abused and abandoned horses. It was amazing how the investment of $1.39 for a packet of seeds and a little effort in the garden could be transformed to a nice return for a good cause. And I still have plenty of gourds, pumpkins and squash left!

I was goofy and didn't get the camera busy right away so I didn't get pictures of all my angels who helped pull this event off. Bonnie Anderson, Pat and Ione Timm, MaryAnn and Al Ormson.
Tom Hogue's beautiful daughters, Madison and Taylor and the lovely Fran Latane all spent their time meeting and greeting--helping with the demonstrations, directing traffic, etc. What a great support crew.

My love and husband Don, likes a more low key, behind the scenes support who made sure the signs were up on time and taken down at night and took care of Helga all day. He was also the head BBQ chef who served us steak dinners after "work" for three nights in a row. Wow, those steaks were great!

Now--I know what everyone is waiting for: WHO WON THE STAINED GLASS PANEL?

The drawing took place this morning on the front porch of Funk & Wagnell's where the hermetically sealed mayonnaise jar was unsealed to reveal the name of the lucky winner, who is,-------drum roll, please!.....................

Amanda Lindbo of Baldwin, Wisconsin!!!!

Congratulations, Amanda!

Thanks to all who entered and I hope you had as much fun on the tour as we did!

Ione Timm, MaryAnn Ormson and Taylor Hogue were "angels" to help!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Friday at the Fall Art Tour

We had a rainy first day, but that didn't stop people from getting out on the tour! We had visitors from Rochester, Osseo, St. Paul, Shakopee, Illinois, Iowa and lot of local folks, too. About 50 people entered the drawing for the mission panel--and there were many who chose not to.

Thanks so much to Bonnie, Pat and Frances for being such good studio elves! You really made my job easier and I sincerely appreciate your help! You did a great job helping people sign up for the drawing, pushing gourds (!) and directing the parking and explaining how stained glass is made.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

'twas the night before art tour.....

and all through the shop, all the creatures are working, they might never stop.

Mom's hanging the stained glass, with all so much care, and Papa's with Helga, and aren't they a pair!

Paisley has chewed all the leaves off my plant.

The horses are restless--they're all on a rant.

Chickens are scratching and laying their eggs.

The geese are out plotting their final revenge.

OK, I've lost it--I'm as ready as I'm going to be. The rain is pouring and more is expected for tomorrow. It might be a reprieve to have a slow start to the morning. For better or for worse, look out--here it comes!

Falling Leaves of Ginger

Didn't get as many made as I wanted, but I at least have some homemade thin cripy ginger cookies for the Fall Tour.

My cookie cutter came from T C Latane. Fran Latane's (the horse trainer) mom is a talented designer and creator of tin cookie cutters. The good ones--made by hand. She can make anything you dream up. She and her husband, Tom, have a whole shop of their handmade works in metal, tin and other artists who do pottery and weaving. They have been original participants in the Fall Art Tour.

I like how each leaf is an individual--not "cookie cutter"ish at all. That's what comes from an original handmade cutter. And the burnt ones--well, they're pretty special, too.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Harvest of the Gourds

Paisley helped me bring in the massive harvest of batwing gourds and the few jack-be-little mini pumpkins. He was certain there might be a mouse in there!

I had to Google bat wing gourds to find out what their real purpose is. Evidently, they are good as utensils--like spoons and small vessels.

I only have several hundred of them so I am hoping to make them gifts to the expected visitors this weekend to the art tour at Catfish Corner. Cat included.

I also harvested eight BIG pumpkins and several dozen buttercup squash. We tried a couple of squash this week and they are very ripe and tasty.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Week before the show

Here it is Sunday afternoon already, and it has been a very full week. I made a lot of glass this week and I'm starting to get it set up into some fashion for the show.

I had Lois and Anders here for a visit Friday afternoon which was a welcome diversion! Then "The Petersen Girls" were here yesterday afternoon. This minivan of ladies piles out--they seemed familiar but being in my dotage, I wasn't quite placing them until the conversation turned to Luck, and that they are Stella Petersen's daughters. A long time ago, but were such fun customers at Studio Works, Luck. I was just a little girl when they were the young singers in church with their brothers--very talented! Early 60's stuff! We chatted a bit, and I showed them my shop and talked about the lampshades, etc., that they have from the Luck store.

I got a little pony time in last evening. The girls have been so bored lately since I have been in work mode. I brought them a bunch of carrots from the garden and a bucket full of kale. Favorite treats! Chy wanted to play first and we had a little 22' line action--which triggered Cerra and Emmy into galloping and bucking fits! It was so fun! Chy was so responsive--loped with me and was jumping barrels like a breeze. She tried walking the balance beam--a new try for her--she offered. I didn't ask. We tried the trailer again and, as usual, it's just so close. By then it was dark and I had to quit under the rising half moon.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Sasquatch and more coyote activity

Ma and pa coyote were out on the town again--and managed to cross the trail cam at 4 am.

A norwegian big foot was also spotted. Alert the media.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

On the road to the tour

The journey continues in the preparation department. Setting up displays, pairing compatible colors and finding the flow.

This coming week will be all about making stuff and the next week will be getting everything in place for the opening and doing the final clean up.

I'm making leaf shaped ginger cookies during my down time!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

What are you going to do?

That's what I think their little cartoon bubbles would say at this point!

This is the kind of shot I have on hand for days like this. There isn't a real descriptive photo for everything that has been going on here in preparation for the Fall Art Tour. Maybe one of the vacuum cleaner? Art being hung? Cobwebs on the ceiling?

Transforming the workshop into "art gallery" has been challenging since I wanted to have it look good (decent, not too messy) for a press interview. I was visited today by Pam Powers of the Leader-Telegram newspaper in Eau Claire to do an article about my studio and the Art Tour. Being interviewed is strange--trying to tell the story, hit the high points, don't say anything too stupid, and keep my mouth shut if there is a camera around. Pam asked some thought provoking questions that---well, I guess I'll have to read the article to see what I said because I think I was at blabber point by then. It will be in the Sunday paper the week before the tour.

She took pictures of the studio, but also some for rural flavor--chickens, geese and we even got Paisley up on Chy. The "children" who are normally full of cat and horsenality were suddenly having to be coaxed with treats to come out and have their pictures taken.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

They Work While We Sleep

Don found a great wildlife crossing spot to put the trail cam and got some good shots of the evening activities. A young buck in velvet, a BADGER, and ol' Wiley Coyote were caught by the camera over the last two nights. (I didn't keep the many shots of squirrels and raccoons!) Our nocturnal visitors have been busy.

He had been thinking about setting a trap for the coyotes--especially since we have lost so many chickens, but with a badger in the area it was good that didn't happen or he might have found himself in big trouble. The badger and Don!

I noticed, too, that I need to adjust the date on the camera--unless I can take pictures into the future.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Mysteries Revealed

The huge umbrella leaves of the pumpkin plants have shielded their bounty from view. But they are out there and now they are turning orange.

The dry two weeks have taken a toll on those big leaves and now they are starting to sag and these big guys are peeking out.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Hardy Hibiscus

I love my new hardy hibiscus plant. It is supposed to be able to live through our Zone 4 winters, but I still have it in a pot on the patio. The plant is just a stick--about 3 feet tall with this gigantic flower that is at least 6" across!

It was a miracle it survived at all. The plant arrived by mail from a nursery and there wasn't a leaf left on it. It lived in the greenhouse all summer to gain strength and now is showing off its will to thrive.

The next step is to get it planted for real and hope for the best in the spring.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

But, Wait! There's More!

The rag quilt got done last week but I just haven't taken time to update the blog. The many months (years?) it took to git 'er done was worth the wait. The guest room has been waiting patiently for this improvement. It was a fun project and didn't need to take that long, but was a welcome diversion from gardening and winter!

So, guests of Catfish Corner, you will be well covered and have turnips to boot (read on) !

Chick Day - Late

It was chick day here this morning when my order of a dozen Gold Star laying hens and two dozen Cornish broilers showed up at the post office. Most people have the common sense to get their new chicks in the spring. I thought we had plenty of chickens and decided to skip a year. Then the coyotes, raccoons and owls made their dinner plans.

Most of the summer we weren't shutting the door on the chickens at night. They go to bed way later than we do in the summer and it was just too much of a rodeo trying to herd them into their room every night.

The raccoons eventually caught on to our security breach and decided it was fun to go in at night and terrorize them. Owls probably took some during the day when they go out to forage in the pines and the last straw was having coyotes here in the yard at night howling and yipping. Egg production has gone to one or two a day. Horrors! I am going to have to buy eggs at the grocery store!

I talked Don's cousin Clint into taking a dozen broilers in exchange for his help on processing day (he and Don can decapitate---I don't like that part). It will take only seven to eight weeks of growth to have chickens for the freezer and probably four months before the Gold Stars start laying.

Waxing philosophic with turnips

The turnip harvest was completed yesterday and I picked the gigundo turnip--about 5 lbs worth. It was amazingly firm inside, too! I had to cut it into four sections so it would fit in my little waxing bucket. Everyone got dipped and put into cold storage. Just wait until people find out they may get one as a prize for visiting Catfish Corner!