we are in the final stretch of holiday hell..... I have shopped alone this year and it was good, but alas I have said the "F" word so much I can't even say the word gingerbread without working it in.
In the car alone, miles of tail lights before me, the windows steamed up. Why? Because I had on winter attire, shopped in an 85 degree store, stuck in a freezing car and breathing heavily. Elvis belted out Blue Christmas on the radio and I wanted a cigarette! I have not smoked in 25 years but there are those times I would smoke 'em if I had 'em. A guy in a black Beamer, holding a cell phone to his ear with a hand sheathed in black leather driving gloves, jumped the curb and wedged in front of my bumper....... I wrote the "F" word in the steam and pressed my lips to the glass. Two stops later, more shopping, the windows had cleared and once again stuck in traffic, the windows again started to fog, the word just magically appeared. I was sitting next to the Precious Cargo bus. The busload of cherubic faces with busy fingers writing the "F" word back at me in their steamed windows. Awesome.....
OK, get a grip! I dug in the bag of groceries and found the pink rubber band around the head of fresh broccoli, secured it over my wrist and every time I said the "F" word I snapped it. By the time I got home I couldn't feel my fingers and my wrist had gone limp. Maybe I should try my forehead!
and it's only 8:30 a.m.......
I was done, completely done, stick a fork in me. The big ass ham had been scored, the sweet potatoes had been captured, presents lovingly picked out, everything else was in the freezer or garden, time to head for the barn. The moat would be filled with alligators wearing red bows, the sniper towers would be decorated with holly berry trim, the razor wire was secure and lit in red and grean! Merry "F'n" Christmas........SNAP! I snapped so hard the Christmas trees fell off my socks.
I am safe, I am in the bubble....... I have coffee, I walk around the compound and breath, I cannot leave until holiday crazies are over.
Thankfully, yesterday was glorious! The sun came out after three hard days of rain, temperatures soared into the high 50's. I got my kitchen stuff done and was out the door by noon.
The girls finally emerged from coop!
Good Morning ladies!
The first sign of garlic planted in the fall!
The rosemary is snug, insulated with leaves.
It was warm enough to work the compost pile for a bit.
I broke out the shovels and moved the elderberry. This was a project slated for last fall but it never got done. It haunted me! Finishing this one project made me happier than a visit from Santa!
This is Betina, how do I know it's Betina. She is bald. The other girls have pecked her bald. Betina is broody and loves to sit on the eggs all day while reading the 50 Shades of Beige. There will be a line to use the nesting box, there are three nesting boxes but they only like on particular box, the one Betina is sitting in. They will peck at her until she is bleeding and still she sits, undeterred by the bullying.
I think Batina would smoke cigarettes if she had 'em too.
This cuckoo maran hen has stopped laying, you can tell by the pink comb, should be bright red and no wattles to speak of, thus no eggs. I followed this molting hen around singing:
Chickens roasting on an open fire,
Bourbon nipping at my nose
Farmers lighting their stoves with a glow.
Will find it hard to wait for pork......
Batina looked on and laughed!
Sunday was so nice I dug the last row of potatoes while the chickens gobbled cut worms like they were butter pecan ice cream!
The sour dough bread is coming along nicely!
And the ginger beer is really getting good! I made enough to freeze two pints and this large green bottle kept in the fridge.
This is pretty simple to make! 1 cup of ginger (I run it through the food processor), 1 grated lime peel and all the juice of the lime, 2 cups of honey, 1 cup of sugar, 4 cups of water. Bring to a low boil, turn down and simmer for 12 minutes. Turn off the heat, let stand for an hour, strain through cheese cloth and bottle. I use 2 tablespoons of the syrup to 12 oz. glass. Top it off with sparkling water and ice. Also good with a splash of pineapple juice if you have it. Also really good with a shot of rum, if you have it!
Now we can say Merry Christmas! Well not yet as we are out of bourbon and the liquor store doesn't open until noon!