The Storm is Over

Turkey Tracks: January 30, 2020

The Storm is Over

Today dawned sunny—the storm is gone.  It’s 10 degrees.  The snow is light and fluffy, so fairly easy to shovel.  But there is a lot of it—at least 18 inches up here on the hill, but the drifts are deeper of course. And light snow sticks to one’s boots and gloves.

I waded out twice yesterday, snow shovel in hand, to clear the generator, but never lost power. Out by the garage, the drifts were deep enough that I need the shovel for balance.

The storm was meant to be worse in the night, with high winds, but by the time I did the last generator check before bed, local radar showed that the worst had passed us by here on the coast. The darker snow bands were to our west.

AC refused to go out for a long time yesterday until I put on a coat, boots, etc., and went with him.  He didn’t like the high wind. Or peeing in deep snow.

Now, on this sunny, bright morning, I’m enjoying a cup of coffee and waiting for the plow/shovel guys to come.  I need to get the kitchen door open—it got snow stuck around it when I was out there shoveling—there is a kind of wind tunnel that comes off the roof just over that door that dumps snow onto the deck—just outside the door.  I was able to bully that door closed enough to lock it last night (which makes the seals better), but it needs to be cleaned off this morning so it will properly close.

There is something about a big snow storm that makes me feel so alive—especially when I go out into it for a bit.

Nor’Easter Blizzard and Sewing Day

Turkey Tracks: January 29, 2022

Nor’Easter Blizzard and Sewing Day

I’ve been waiting for a BIG snow day.

And here it is.

AC doggie is properly impressed. Other than his morning very quick pee, he’s refusing to go out.

I rounded up yummy food for the day: a chicken which I spatchcocked this morning, some fresh asparagus, some baking potatoes, and a Granny Smith apple which I’ll have for whatever I eat as a light meal tonight.

My favorite chicken parts are the drumsticks and the wings, followed by the thighs.

I’ve been eating my big meal in the early afternoon and having a heavy ”snack” which includes fruit around 7 pm. That feels pretty good for winter.

In anticipation of the storm, I put a quilt that’s been waiting on the longarm—and I hope to finish and get it off this afternoon. Then I can trim and bind. An existing quilt only has one night or two left for its binding, so I’ll night sewing all ready to go.

I’ll write more about this quilt in another post.

Now, an update on the flying squirrels presently living between my lower and middle floors—in the ceiling area. A solution is in process—and it is pretty elegant in my opinion. These critters come and go off and on day and night. Trap doors will be set where they are getting in—and they will let them out, but not back in. All the places they can get in will be off-limits via metal screening. There are lots of places where they could attempt to get in—but those places will be protected against them. My wildlife person (Ray) says they will effectively be gone in about one day once this work is done. They will move on to another habitat.

BTW, a ”colony,” like what I have can be 20 to 30 individuals. Oh my.

I have also taken down all the bird feeders. And here is why, other than not wanting the squirrels to stay around my area. Ray saw BIG tracks in the snow—right up near the house. He thinks they are likely from a coyote. And two nights ago, AC went ballistic about something being in his yard. I had a hard time getting him to come back to me—as he was sure we were being invaded by something really dangerous. A coyote? His barking and fierceness was way different than when he chases off the deer.

So, in essence, feeding the birds has set up a situation where coyote is maybe coming to hunt around my house.

How long would it take a coyote to work up the courage to eat AC? He’s definitely a tender morsel.

So, no more feeding birds. Or the squirrels that also gather.

”My Sunny” Quilt Is Finished

Turkey Tracks: January 28, 2022

“My Sunny” Quilt Is Finished

I’ve been busy.

Mostly solving problems that come up with a household. The new printer stopped working after a power outage—which usually doesn’t disrupt my technology permanently—along with my ipodtouch which I use to listen to books. That got sorted in about 20 minutes yesterday with a MAC person who came to the house.

And today a wildlife person is coming today to address the flying squirrels who have gained access to the ceiling on the first floor. AC’s right on that problem as his hearing is so much better than mine. I thought it was chipmunks. It is NOT. So I’ve been reading all about flying squirrels. Turns out they are VERY social—with each other and with humans. Some have them as pets even, but the text I read said that flying squirrels are also very demanding about spending time with their humans, which involves interacting with them.

Anyway, I did finish ”My Sunny,” which is the first project designed by Tara Faughnan for season 4 of Sewtopia’s The Color Collective. Mine is the ”classic” version, but I am inspired by all the different and very creative layouts I’ve seen others do now—and that is part of what I really love about this online class. Note that the straight line quilting—done on my domestic as doing this work on the longarm is still a learning curve for me—is not showing up well in these photos.

I really, really like the backing I used. It just seems so modern and so perfect.

Here’s where ”My Sunny” lives for the moment—and you can see the quilting rows better here.

And here:

As I’ve said before, I want to play with this block some more—and maybe I’ll set what I do in one of the more daring ideas I’ve seen. I definitely want to try some red and orange—and darker—backgrounds.

Maybe a wall hanging???

Another Learning Curve

Turkey Tracks: January 22, 2022

Another Learning Curve

The ice maker on my frig needed replacing.

That meant I had to totally remove all food—and that meant trips to the garage to store frozen food and to bring in coolers for the frig contents.

It also meant an opportunity to take all the parts apart and to clean the frig top to bottom. This job was a fun learning curve because it was really interesting to see how all these parts fit so neatly together—in ways I had not realized.

All these parts come out easily, including the large bin at the freezer bottom—which meant I could actually clean underneath it, where things like coffee grinds had fallen.

Can I just say that this refrigerator is as clean or cleaner when it arrived 7 years ago.

The new part is going in this morning. So the day will be spent in part putting all the food back and returning ice blocks and coolers to the garage.

It is single-digit cold.

The intermittent creek is frozen solid.

But here’s what it looked like one day last week.

It’s too cold for AC to run at the Snow Bowl athletic field while chasing his ball.

Our weather for upcoming 10 days or so features cold, sun for the most part, and no snow.

Sewing is happening. For sure.

Bitter Cold and a Rainy Morning

Turkey Tracks: January 17, 2022

Bitter Cold and a Rainy Morning

Three days: two days of temps in the single digits and today we have temps going to the 40s and…rain and high wind.

Oh my…

I’ve never yet had a problem with pipes freezing, but with the wind chill factor in play, I did run a thin stream of water in a downstairs bathroom faucet.

My Camden friend sent me this photo of a Titmouse hunkered down in the bitter cold of Saturday and Sunday.

My bird feeder is full and two suet feeders are hung. The turkeys tried to inhabit the warmer slope behind the house yesterday, but AC would not allow them to stay.

I’ve happily hunkered down—though AC and I made a quick trip to the grocery store yesterday mostly just to get out. Organic blueberries and raspberries came home with us, along with some fresh lettuce and AAA batteries.

I’ve finished quilting (on the domestic machine) ”My `Sunny’” and have bound it and am now hand-sewing the binding at night. I love having this Janome set up with a walking foot already attached—and I can store this whole arrangement neatly on the back wall when I’m done. I can watch tv or listen to whatever book I have on Audible from this place. The red quilt keeps AC off my new hassock and, as a bonus, part of the couch.

”Whirlygigs” came off the longarm yesterday afternoon, and I’ll install binding on it today. The pantograph is ”Bayside,” which Wendy’s Quilting blog used recently, and I think it gave this quilt wonderful texture. Wendy is an awesome longarm quilter, and she lives in Thunder Bay, Ontario.

I finished and attached the 5th block of 6 to the 4th row of the EPP project from hell. So, progress there as well. And I spent some time gluing the last of the rectangles that form the rings. One more block and two more rows. I think I’ll NOT attach this row to the others, but will attach the last two rows, then attach them to the mother ship.

And so, the winter of 2022 progresses…

I Just Spent a Lovely Morning!

Turkey Tracks: January 13, 20200

I Just Spent a Lovely Morning!

With the bitter cold (single digits) of the last two days, AC and I stayed indoors. Basically there was no where I needed to go and lots of fun projects to enjoy here. Even AC settled in as his outdoor trips were of a very short duration.

But today I made a quick trip up to the Belfast Co-op to replenish my supply of local raw butter, organic Honey Crisp apples, and various veggies. A tin of organic ricotta cheese also jumped into the cart.

It was great to be out and about—for sure. The car was warm, the scenery gorgeous, and the sky soft with a low quiet cloud layer that feels like it holds snow.

Back in Camden, I went by the bank and then on to the Snow Bowl athletic field so AC could chase his ball. As soon as we start down the road leading toward home, he starts begging for some ball time. He’s VERY vocal, that dog. And it is hard to resist him—plus the time outside is good for both of us. There is a lot of ice on the field now, but the protruding grass gave good traction for both of us.

The pond is iced over and smooth. Several families were out skating and exploring. Here’s just one such group enjoying this winter morning.

Now there is a luscious salad lunch from the remains of my spatchcocked roasted chicken. A blog reader here said in the comments from the last post that this term ”spatchcocked chicken” was new to her. It was to me, too, about 6 months ago. My daughter-in-law is still laughing that I had no idea… There are videos online that show you how. You will need a GOOD pair of chicken scissors though.

After lunch, there will be a long afternoon of sewing, especially now that I have a tired dog. I have a quilt on the longarm and ”Sunny” on the domestic. I could not figure out how to get “Sunny” on the longarm so that the straight lines of the block seam lines lined up in a straight line so I can use the channel locks to make a straight line down the quilt. That will be a learning curve. And I did baste ”Sunny” on Innova.

There is, also, a quilt forming on the design wall.

It’s all good.

Mid-January 2022

Turkey Tracks: January 12, 2022

Mid-January 2022

Well, it’s almost mid-January.

It’s been super cold for the past few days—8 degrees yesterday morning with a wind chill of -30 degrees or so. Inside, where AC and I stayed yesterday—I’ve been busy with projects of all kinds—including an extended period of learning more about my Innova longarm. Today I’ll put ”Sunny” on Innova. And I’ve had also an extended period of cutting into my Cotton+Steel/Ruby Star Society stash as I want to get to the point where I can put what’s left into my regular stash. More on those projects in future posts.

Tuesday, yesterday, was laundry, cleaning, and general household organizing day. And this week, I undertook some cooking duties as well. I spatchcocked a chicken and made AC’s fish food. The spatchcocked chicken will cook in 45 minutes in my oven with the convection fan running—which is way, way faster than an upright chicken. It’s easy to cut out the backbone with good kitchen shears and to flatten the carcass for roasting.

Here’s my lunch salad—all made and waiting for some warm chicken on the top:

It was totally delicious—and made enough that I saved what I didn’t eat and had it for part of my dinner. I read yesterday that red bell papers are a fruit, not a veggie, and that they have more vitamin C than an orange. I also took the meat off the bones for future meals and froze all the bones for a future broth project—probably to be made after I cook another chicken.

I’m two months behind on The Color Collective’s very dynamic and interesting current projects—due to fabric-delivery issues at Sewtopia. One palette should come this week, and the other soon now. I am in no rush, really. So it’s all good.

Here’s AC hunkering down on his bed beneath Innova:

He’s such a good boy!

He did get a good run at the Snow Bowl athletic field on Monday—though it was very cold then too. I don’t take him out to run if the temps are below about 25 degrees as I’m afraid, as hard as he runs, that the bitter cold would harm his lungs.