Sunday, October 14, 2018

carvng pumpkins


We each carved a pumpkin yesterday, Mark's on the left, Esme's is the little one!

photographic evidence that we both smile the exact same way when we're not sure we want our picture taken *heh*

Thursday, October 04, 2018

chicken condos

These are the chicken condos for nesting boxes in the new coop.  Mark made the gate and is working on putting it up on the posts Esme and I dug holes for last week.  We have eight chickens so someone has to share, but it will be so much more space than they have now.  Hopefully they can learn to lay their eggs in these instead of just on the floor in front of them.  We will put them in the rebuilt chicken house in the next few days.

I bought a set of donut pans for baked donuts to try the recipe for egg bread in - since it was basically a donut recipe with alterations to begin with.  The pans get here next Tuesday!  Weird to buy such a specific item but they were actually not expensive and I plan to use them like muffin tins.   I also began knitting my pair of winter gloves - and got one thumb done so far, working on the hand up to the fingers.

Watched two episodes of Welsh-only tv today, and talked a bit on a Welsh chat board.  I'm understanding enough that the lack of subtitles on the tv player (new site) is not a terrible loss - I can understand so much of what is going on without them.  The chat board helps me see what people actually say to each other in short conversational Welsh.

Got to go finish up some laundry.. long day starting early tomorrow.

Esme had finished her book and we took her to the library to stack up a few more.  I tried out my smartphone and tried to get a picture.. and it worked.

Rex is getting bigger.  Spud wishes the puppy would grow dignity instead of just bigger.  Rex is also growing into his 'spectacles' markings around his eyes.. but his feet are still huge.

Wednesday, October 03, 2018

egg bread recipe experiments

I'm trying to use up our chicken eggs.

This makes a sweet egg bread pancake cookie that will go well with cheddar cheese, sausage or even mixed berries.  We ate a lot at first like they were cookies, and I'm going to save some to reheat with cheese and veggies later.  Our dogs highly approved of them, as well - so they won't make bad treats to give out when we are done with the batch and want to try another go at it.

Heat oven to 425 degrees.


1/2 cup of butter + some for brushing pans
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
6 small sized chicken eggs (maybe even more... will try more)
1.5 tsp baking powder
.25 tsp baking soda
1 tsp nutmeg
3 tsp ground ginger
3/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
2.75 cups of flour
1 cup whole milk

Whip eggs and sugars together.  Add vanilla.
Add butter cold and whisk until small pieces remain in batter.
Mix baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, ginger and salt together into a small bowl.
Put these dry ingredients above into the batter a bit at a time, whisking constantly.
Add 1 cup of flour.  Combine
Add 1/2 cup of milk. Combine
Add 1 cup of flour.  Combine
Add other 1/2 cup of milk.  Combine
Add remaining flour (.75 cup)

Using a basting brush, coat two baking sheets with melted butter.
Drop large tablespoons of batter cookie-style onto sheets.
Cover remaining batter and set aside.
Bake in 425 degree oven until outer edges are browned but not blackened, about 10 minutes.
egg 'cookies' will resemble pancakes and will harden as they are taken out of the heat.
Use a metal spatula to immediately remove from baking sheet onto aluminum foil or rack.
Brush pans again with melted butter and use remaining batter.

Let cool and then package in a covered container.

Monday, September 24, 2018


It rained for like three days straight... hope it is over for a bit now.  We've nailed down the dates for going to South Carolina to see my dad.  I sent a few birthday presents on to them so they will be t here and we won't have to take them on the plane.  Esme had a great weekend with the J family to celebrate G's birthday.  They went to St.Louis Zoo and had a blast. 

The car has a name - it is Lydia.  I'll just not go into explaining but it has stuck and that is its name.  I've ordered some special bumper stickers that will make 'reference' to the name as an in-joke between Mark and I.  Let's just say she was the topic of a song on the Muppets, and the words chosen are from that song, although that song is not why I named her Lydia in the first place.

Rex is growing, and growing, and growing.  He broke his little bucket and I bought him a bigger one at work but he hasn't taken quite as much to it yet.

Other bits.
I've kept going with my Welsh, and can almost understand the children's book third chapter I was working through without going to Google translate. 

Did a little crocheting - a hat with two colors of yarn and a metallic thread intertwined.

We really need to get the chicken yard finished - they were so miserable during this rainstorm, but really just because being wet they didn't want to huddle with other wet chickens in the only dry place and the dry chickens kept kicking the wet ones out or something to the effect....

Monday, September 17, 2018


We drove a couple of hours each way to look at this Honda Insight, and came home with it.  It is in very good shape, and we hope to keep it that way.  It is a hybrid, meaning it has a gasoline engine and an electric battery that combine for really good gas mileage.  It is also about sixteen years old... but it is really hard to tell that because it was kept so well.

It is a two seater.. with a hatchback.  We had told ourselves we were looking for a four door... but this was a good deal and the specifics of the car really interested Mark more and more as he looked deeper and deeper into it.

Esme got some extra allowance today giving the new car a good wash down.

Friday, September 14, 2018


I've been a bit absent.  We got the home loan and have begun lots of projects.  The tractor went into the shop  - we worried briefly that the pole garden would get torn up bringing it out of its storage place but the man who came to get it was some sort of genius and made a very complicated maneuver look easy.

So, tractor fixed and we can get gravel and fix the road.  Have to call the insulation guys, they said they would be out here Wednesday to estimate and they did not call.  Mark has been looking at used cars.  I ordered the panel for the bathtub to fix the disintegrating wall.  We plan on remaking the chicken pen for winter this weekend.  I've been looking into airfare and such for the trip to South Carolina we want to do in November.  So, very busy.

I've been doing my Welsh every morning, since I close every night at work.  I've been putting a podcast on my to-do list every day so that I will actually take some time out for it.  I've done a little Japanese and some Spanish, too.  I really dislike Spanish - how it rolls through my brain.. but I'm trying with a new app that has good reviews.  It feels weird that even Japanese can find root in my memory quickly and the Spanish rolls around instead.. and it is quite a bit like French so why can I listen to French and it comes back out correctly but not Spanish?  Probably just a wall I need to break down.  I secretly think it is because of the different versions of Spanish between learning apps and my brain knows they are not the same 'slot' but can't sort between them without lots and lots of input..and I don't do enough ever to get that sorted so Spanish just feels 'hard' when in fact it is two or three languages.

And I've been listening to the audio book Willa of the Wood... audiobooks take up so much time.. I couldn't get my hands on the paper copy and I really wanted to read this story after liking the Serafina series so much.

There is a drawing I want to make - a couple, but haven't gotten myself the photographs that I should in order to make progress there.

Esme's friend wants to take her to a zoo and museum next weekend.
The weekend after that we have a birthday party to go to that I already promised.

I feel a little bit of overwhelm on some of that coming .. but baby steps and don't let the full calendar loom at me I guess.

I've given away what.. ten pumpkins now?  And we still have about ten on the table.  One of them weighs in at forty pounds.

 Rex is growing, he is twice as big as when we found him.
Freckles and Lucy were the last to really warm up to him - they were the puppies before he came along .. and now they are playing with him in the yard and rubbing him in the dirt.  Also, since he is bigger, they aren't as likely to make him squeak, which they were probably worried about.

 a little bit of the wildflower 'material' photos I need to collect in order to make a nice drawing


 Freckles and Rex in the classic 'your whole nose still fits inside my mouth so there puppy' pose we have seen time and time before...