Another week’s end

There was no 25 second from the front door last Sunday as we were able to go visit Son 1, have a couple delicious meals out, tour a couple museums, and help transport a chair.

This week was cold, very cold at night and the fall color has faded and many trees are bare now. One morning, the frost was accompanied with frozen fog and all of the trees and shrubs were glazed.

The peppers were covered with heavy plastic and with nights later this week staying above freezing, I will check to see if any survived the nights in the 20’s.

Just before our trip to see Son 1, Son 2 sent us an announcement that he and his wife had had a baby girl, our 9th grandchild. Each grand has been presented with a hand made Christmas stocking, made with love by me. With a stop at Michaels and the local yarn store, I acquired the three skeins of wool needed to get started. I found a pattern that actually knits like a sock instead of flat to be sewn together later. The stocking made good car knitting and was finished this week.

Each stocking is lined and has a cross stitched tag that states, “Made with love, Grandmom, year.” It has been steam blocked and lined and is ready to send with other family gifts.

First freeze

The forecast warned me and I took heed. Late yesterday afternoon, a few tomatoes, radishes, and all of the mature Jalapenos and red Seranos were harvested when I went to gather hens to their pen and bring in their eggs.

While there, I also picked some komatsuna (mustard spinach) and isn’t it gorgeous. The spinach, komatsuna, kohlrabi greens, and remaining radishes would fare fine over night in the deep wooden box. The peppers were given a cover for the night in hopes of a few more in our future.

Upon waking, the world was glittering with frost, the cover on the peppers frozen in spots. It is now hanging to dry and I am going to look for some heavy plastic today to make a tunnel over them and to cover the tunnel ribs over the greens. Tonight and tomorrow night are supposed to be even colder. According to the weather blogger in our local newpaper, this is the third latest first freeze on record.

In the cold this morning, the hens coop was refreshed, a very cold, very dirty egg found under their night perches and a warm fresh egg in a nesting box. Fresh warm eggs are great handwarmers, but I needed two. I will have to start wearing work gloves and the barn coat in the mornings for a while.

Later today, when it warms up a bit, the tomato vines will be pulled and added to the compost pile, the hedge clippers used to snip them and the tomatillo plants into bits small enough to break down, perhaps turning the pile to put them in a deeper layer. The garden will rest for the winter, the solar charger turned off. The asparagus tops cut back soon. It is time for rest for the winter ahead.

Some of the produce from last night was used to make me a bowl of soup. Son 1 recently introduced me to doenjang, a fermented soybean paste. A broth was made with crushed Szechuan pepper corns, garlic, and onion sauteed in sesame oil with chicken broth added and simmered. Diced yams were cooked until nearly tender, then chives, parsley, komatsuna, and a couple teaspoons of doenjang added until the greens wilted and the paste dissolved and blended in. The soup was poured over a sliced raw radish and a sliced serano pepper. It was delicious, warming, and headclearing. There was only enough left over chili for one bowl that was served to hubby and I enjoyed the soup. Once the weather chills, I could live on soup twice a day, good thick potato, Mexican soups, beef stew, chili, and the various Asian creations based on what is on hand. The Asian creations can be made a bowl at a time in 15 minutes and can have noodles, rice, or quinoa with the veggies, sometimes a boiled egg added. Hearty, warm, and filling.


Today is election day and thankfully will end for a while, the barrage of negative campaign spots on television and hopefully in the mail. Politicians don’t campaign on their merit, their agenda, etc., they work on a smear campaign using information that is usually unfounded against the other candidate. Unfortunately, this works with people who don’t take the time or don’t have the education/skills to check out the true facts. Arguing that candidate A will do X, when the office lacks the power to deal with that issue regardless of who wins.

It doesn’t stop with television and print media. So much misinformation is spread via those sources and social media about other societal issues as well. With the misinformation comes the name calling and other inappropriate responses to the original presenter or poster.

Our society, government, and world are not perfect, but civility and decorum seem to have been lost. There is no respect. Disagreement is met with vulgarity and violence.

Every day the news is filled with shootings, with violence against service workers, with abusive and disruptive behaviors that endanger the person they are accosting and anyone nearby.

The negativity in society has become overwhelming to the point that the news causes constant stress.

Today there is an article about two neighboring high school football teams in a game that ended 106 to 0. Why, what adult coach would allow that to happen? Instead of trying to make it a game, he had his team go for a 2 point conversion when they already had over 100 points. What happened to sportsmanship? Another failed lesson in respect for others.

I am currently overwhelmed with all the negativity. I want to focus on being thankful for a while.