Thankful

Thanksgiving Day

On Thanksgiving we had goose.  Yes, I finally did it.  We were thankful for food on the table.

Our plan was to put it in the smoker and 6 to 7 hours later have a wonderful savory feast.  Our plans were interrupted when Bob found a starving and dehydrated opossum trapped in the smoker.   We haven’t a clue how long he had been in there.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Apparently, having gotten in through the little adjustable air vent on the firebox, he then got into the smoking chamber.  In doing so, he dislodged the small grate and trapped himself.  (We walked away and gave him a chance to get out.  When we came back he was gone.) 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Weak and filthy with soot, we are certain he was thankful too. 

Having no time to pressure wash the smoker and disinfect it I had to go to plan B.  Roasting the goose in the oven.  I hate doing that because of all the greasy mess and smoke, but I tried it a different way!  Dragging down the big, blue, enamel, roasting pan that once belonged to Bob’s mother, I put the goose in, put the lid on, and Voila!  No greasy smoking mess!  I am thankful.  😉

Bob came in later in the afternoon and smelled the goose in the oven…

Oh man, this smells so good!  I’m glad we had to prepare the goose in the oven because it smells like the holidays when I was a kid!

He was thankful for the memories of holiday gatherings and his family.

Fast forward to yesterday…

Which found us at the Mountain Farmlet and working feverishly.  Bob was inside doing demo, and I was outside moving and storing the (possibly) useable planks of lumber from the demo.  In between I finished cleaning out the sheds, and then went walkabout in the woods.

I took myself directly to the bridge to look at the creek.  The creek and the bridge define the southernmost tip of our property.  While I was there, the neighbor lady came over and introduced herself.  We talked for almost an hour and got to know quite a bit about each other.  She seems so nice, and I look forward to being up there full time and having her as a friend.

We have a ‘date’, she and I, to go down into the creek bed and explore, “when it isn’t too hot and there won’t be snakes.”    She’s never been down to the creek!  We have to do this, and when we go I will make sure she won’t have to go bush-whacking like I did to get there.  There was lots of *saw vine. YIKES!  No wonder she’s never been down to see it!  😀

I went down and followed the creek for quite a ways in both directions.  It was lovely.  Here is what I found…

Later, I went into the woods and forging off of our trail this is what I found.  If you are not Lori of Day by Day the Farmgirl Way you may not appreciate the significance of these last photos.  😉

Evidence of life

I was told by the Octogenarian that the deer no longer come here.  Well, they do!  You just need to know the signs.  Thank you for teaching me, Lori.

So thankful!

*NOTE:   The locals call this plant Saw Vine, but it goes by Cat Briar, greenbrier vine, or its botanical name of Smilax bona-nox.  To see where it grows look HERE.

Saw vine information can be linked to by clicking on its name above, but an awesome image of the plant can be found on Steven Schwartzman’s Portraits of Wildflowers  by clicking HERE

Hey Diddle Diddle

Yesterday we set to work and had in mind to get the lawn mowed and wall work done.  So of course before we even left for the mountain I bent over to turn on the water spigot to water the geese and

WHAM!

I threw out my lower back. 

I didn’t let it stop me going, but it sure limited my work.

Every week it is something new up there, but the surprises that help us to continue, and not become too discouraged, are awesome!   So while Bob continued on demo and reconstruction, I busied myself with cleaning out the old smoke house.  In recent history it had been used as a shed and was mostly empty after the Octogenarian’s estate sale, but there remained tons of old junk,

plastic bags, moth balls, old chemicals, baling wire, string, cracked and brittle extension cords, old antennas from two mystery cars, pine cones, mouse eaten black walnut shells, screws, nails, old silk flowers, rusty saw blades, spider webs, and of course the ubiquitous mud dauber nests.

A nice consolation prize was finding a primitive, hand crafted bench, and some ancient iron shelf supports that will look great when cleaned and repainted for the kitchen.

I apologize for not having pictures for you, but I couldn’t carry the camera and lean on the broom for support at the same time.  Rest assured you will see these items when they have been spruced up and placed where I need them!

However, at the end of the day I did find you these by using my tripod to support the camera, and on the trail I used my trekking poles to support myself!  HINT – if you find yourself on poles for support, well, in a pinch you can use one of the poles as a monopod and balance your camera on it.  It isn’t as sturdy as using the tripod, but it works well enough.  😀

UPDATE!  The fencing in question is called “Ring Lock” fencing and is apparently quite dangerous to wild animals and livestock.  Mostly in Australia, and mostly to Kangaroos!  Animals attempting to jump over it get their feet stuck in the wires.  Their feet go through and as momentum takes them over their feet cause the lower wire to the whip over the top wire and this captures their feet.  Very sad!  Glad I will be removing any of it that still remains.  I like the look of the wire fence, but imagine it put to better use as some Objet d’art.    Thank you Pam and Deb for getting me on the right track to solving this mystery fencing!  😉

NOTES:

Chimaphila maculata – aka:  Spotted Wintergreen, Pipsissewa, Striped Wintergreen, Striped Prince’s Pine, Striped Prince’s Plume, Dragon’s Tongue.  Dragon’s Tongue is my favorite of its names and it produces the prettiest petite flowers too!  Want to see them? Then look HERE!

Smoke House –  When the Octogenarian’s husband was growing up on the Mountain, they raised pigs.  To keep pig healthy for eating you had to butcher it in winter and smoke the meat to last you through the year.  The smoke house works on beef, venison, or fish too!  Want to know more?  Look HERE!

Construction notes on the Mountain Farmlet – I promised you a bit of history on cabin building, but now feel it will be more interesting if you wait for me to take more pictures of the cabin’s structure.

I know this is a big tease, and I am sorry, but I think you will be as excited as we are when you can see the photos along with a good explanation of what you are looking at.  Don’t you agree?