Seasonal change

Halloween is done, jack-0-lanterns and ghosts packed away til next year. The wreath on the door was a grapevine wreath with fall ribbon and ceramic turkey and pumpkins shapes so it stayed up until yesterday. Our friends, the wonderful flower growers that come to the Farmer’s Market, Stonecrop Farms moves on from fresh flowers to dried flowers and wreaths this time of year. Hubby suggested that since I had expressed an interest in purchasing one, that I pick out one for my birthday still more than a week away. When we got to the market, there were still several to choose from and though I was attracted to two, decided this one called me the loudest.

It is beautifully full with fresh greens and bright dried flowers. As soon as it arrived home, the skimpy grapevine one was packed away and this beauty hung to grace the door until it fades and the Christmas one is pulled out for a few weeks.

Yesterday was above normal fall weather, following the extreme rain from the late hurricane remnants on Friday, and this morning we awoke to below freezing temperatures, light snow falling, but only accumulating in crevices on the coop, deck, and corners.

It continued with light snow showers throughout most of the day. We managed our walk in spite of the freezing temperatures, wind, and snow showers.

While we were out, a birthday card was needed as one had been missed earlier in the week. It’s purchase, caused me a head shaking pause. The clerk rang it up, told me the total. I handed her cash, she messed with the register, paused and said, “I owe you (long pause)…” I responded, 95 cents, having quickly done the subtraction in my head. She counted out the change and as I was walking out, she called out to me and said, I owe you more money. No, I responded, the purchase was x, I gave you y, the change was 95 cents which you gave me. “But the receipt says z” she says. No, you gave me the correct change, you rang it in wrong, your register is right, my change is correct. She looks confused and heads toward the manage stocking shelves in the back. Poor girl can’t even make change. I fear for her future in that job.

After arriving home, some dried Amaranth and Eucalyptus that I had purchased fresh many weeks ago from Stonecrop and hung to dry with the idea of making a couple of decorations to sell at the last Christmas Bazaar, the last hurrah for the cottage business, was pulled out. The two tobacco baskets that had been display pieces for yarn and hats at events were decorated with the dried plants and dried Baptisia seed pods from my shrub were bunched and tied with Christmas plaid ribbons and floral wire hangers on the back. Hopefully they will sell and grace someone’s home for the holidays.

At the conclusion of that event, all of my display pieces that can’t be repurposed here will be gone. Hopefully, the stock of hats, mitts, mittens, scarves, soap, salves, and lip balm will be reduced to only what can be used as gifts or for personal use. It will be bittersweet to end CabinCraftedshop, but also a relief to not have to deal with the website, taxes, and deadlines.

Week end Olio – 10/31/2022

Every morning that there isn’t extra family in the house, I prepare myself a protein/berry smoothie. As I only make about a cup, the equipment of choice is an ancient (more than two decades old) Magic Bullet. This morning it quit. The motor still runs, but the plastic cog that spins the blade in the jar exploded into many tiny shards, contained below the blender cup, but rendering the motor useless. I can’t say it owed me anything, but this morning’s smoothie was not stellar as the frozen berries did not get blended into the liquid, ground seeds, and PB2 powder.

When I told hubby of its demise, he suggested I should replace it. Yesterday while in the grocer, I saw a “smoothie” maker that was basically a plastic jar with an attached immersion blender. This morning as we were headed to town to try to get our daily walk before the rain resumed, a look at that tool was in order. As I was about to add it to my basket, sitting back on the shelf near it was the newer version of the Magic Bullet (twice the price of the immersion blender). I hope the new one holds up as long as the old one did. It comes with one less blender blade and one more blender container, but otherwise looks very much like it’s predecessor.

Though not a big fan of electric small appliances, this one certainly gets nearly daily use.

And today was soap making day for us, and to have a few bars available at the Christmas Bazaar at the museum in early December. A couple of batches were made and are curing. It is a messy proposition that even after cleaning up requires an additional day for the pot and tools to finish saponifying before they can be cleaned tomorrow.

With daughter available to check in on hubby, I was able to attend a Fall Festival at a local State Park on Saturday to be the demonstration spinner in Colonial Costume and sell some of my wares, the next to last event before the cottage business shuts down in December.

The day was gorgeous, a couple of hats, some fingerless mitts, and a skein of yarn were sold along with a few body care products. November’s spindle challenge is using some of the yarns that have been spun and a couple of hats and more fingerless mitts will be knit from some yarn that has been previously spun and made available at the Christmas Bazaar.

Another routine week ahead with two trips to “the city” for appointments. Today is rainy and no walk was done, but time to clean up from the weekend and make the soap that I have been putting off for a couple of weeks.

OLIO – Oct. 8, 2022

Olio: a miscellaneous collection

We made it another week. Yesterday was the cardiology team member meeting, who has referred us to an at risk cardiology specialist and we await that appointment. This upcoming week is a return to the Urology team for update and discussion on how to move forward. Appetite is improving and daily walks, albeit much more slowly than a month ago and not nearly as long, but up to a couple of miles per day are happening. The walks wear him out, but stamina and muscle mass take time to rebuild. We strive to enjoy every minute we have together, never knowing if it will be 15 minutes more or 10 years more. Hug those you love, express to them your love for them. Don’t take life for granted.

The berry box was mulched with another 4 bags of Cypress mulch over the cardboard. Hopefully that will keep the weeds at bay while the ones outside the box are continuously hacked back, hand pulled, and removed from the garden. Tonight there is a freeze warning in place, probably signalling the end of the season for the vegetable garden and most of the flowers. Some poppy seeds and milkweed seeds will be sown for spring germination in the flower garden. The bed that hours and hours were spent pulling grass and weeds is sprouted back up. Since more soil is needed in that bed, seeds won’t be sown there this fall for the spring, but rather in flower barrels. Perhaps that bed will eventually just be very heavily mulched and the perennials and spring sown seed just placed around the bed on the mulch in barrels and large pots. It would certainly be easier to care for it, but the grass in there needs to be gone first.

Because one of the vending events that I thought I would participate in this fall didn’t happen and a second one is occurring as I write this, that I wasn’t comfortable attending yet, there is only one more event to try to sell off the remaining Cabin Crafted goods. Forty bars of soap went home with Son 1 last weekend for him to use as gifts, some soap is saved for a local friend that always gets her soap from me. Because the CabinCraftedShop.com is gone, remaining goods are being relabelled without the shop name. I wonder if I should maintain the domain name so that the blog doesn’t have to have a name change. As long as I own the domain name, it should be good. There are a couple of braids of wool that should be spun before the Christmas event to place in the sale basket of yarn.

The end of the month is scheduled to be busy as a living history spinner and as a “Spirit” at Wilderness Road Regional Museum and at a heritage event at Claytor Lake State Park. Each of these events are just a few hours each. My wheel will be dusted off and brought out to play as only spindles have been used for the past couple of years. At the Museum, I can generally borrow one of the spindle wheels and not have to carry my wheel with me.

The past month has really made me re-evaluate what is important to me and has resulted in some major destashing 0f goods for sale and donation. It has made me realize that we don’t need “stuff,” we need people. I am ever so grateful to my children for their support, for my friends who have reached out offering emotional and physical support.

To end on a more positive note, we noticed a few days ago, that the bronze frog that is one of the 16 Frogs of Blacksburg has been replaced with a new one. We were angry and upset when the one on the Huckleberry Trail was stolen after a Virginia Tech Football game a couple of years ago and never found. It was amazing that it could be taken as it was on a concrete pier about 8-10″ in diameter and a couple of feet long. The new one is on a slab. Hopefully it will remain there for walkers to enjoy.