Thursday, October 30, 2014

Beauty of Fall

October 30th - Thursday - Partly Cloudy - Cooler

Even though it is cooler, I can't help but enjoy the beauty of fall.

I planted this Bittersweet vine the year before my husband died (2006) and it grew well, but never had any berries.  In fact, it really grew more than I wanted it to.  Last year Lou and I decided we would cut it back, because it was getting almost more than we could manage.  We cut it back and Lou built a new support for it to grow on.  I guess this is what it wanted, as this year we noticed it had berries and I have been watching for them to pop and look at how it has "popped".  I am thrilled with the results.  Krista tied it up a little more yesterday, to help protect it a little more during the winter.

Witch Hazel
This is our Witch Hazel tree that I planted the year that Al died and I noticed yesterday that it has blossomed, isn't it pretty?  As the leaves come off the blooms are more noticeable.  I had always seeing these trees in the woods when I would go hiking and when I found it at the nursery, I thought this would be interesting to have at home.
Blue Bird.
Look what stopped in to visit yesterday.  I think it is interesting that they always stop on their way south, as if to say "we are leaving now, but will be back in the spring".

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Sluice Pipe Project Completed!!

October 29th - Wednesday - Cloudy and Cooler

Yesterday one of Lou's dreams came to a conclusion.  He has wanted to have a pipe around our property to carry excess water away in the spring or any time we have an abundance of rain.  He started digging the ditch several weeks ago and found that he sorta enjoyed digging it.  I tried to get him to rent a small back hoe to do it, but said he enjoyed doing it.  It is bottom land and very few rocks.  Al had put a metal sluice pipe across so we could drive across the area and at one time Krista had dug a ditch, but it has filled up with dirt from next door.

Preston drove up from Tyrone yesterday and helped his dad finish the job and he was able to stay until about 4:00, then Krista helped Lou connect the last piece of pipe and we secured wire across the last  piece to keep any foreign objects from plugging the pipe and Lou dug a collection basin  and put as much of the sod back in place as he could before he quit at 6:00 pm.  He was pretty pleased with the finished project.
This gives you an idea of how long of a ditch  they dug.

This is where they make a curve 

They made sure they kept it at a grade to keep it flowing

"It's level Grandpa".

Connecting the last piece.
While the men were working of the pipe, Krista cut off all of the Autumn Joy, and kept me supplied with what I needed to work on the roof.  I cleaned the gutters, fixed a spot that was leaking in the gutter and repaired a shingle, trimmed branches from two trees and took care of a couple places that were leaking on our roof over the deck.
Trimming branches.
 Krista and I  were busy working all day long, putting the exterior water to bed for the winter, putting plastic over the barn windows, bringing the snow blower up for winter and washing windows and Matthew was with us most of the day. He loved to be with his Grandpa, but he was afraid to walk down the bank by himself, so either Krista or I would walk down with him and hold his hand.  Finally on our last trip he did it on his own and was he ever proud of himself.  We have really enjoyed this fall.  He has been so easy to keep content, just give him his bucket of toys, a dirt pile and he is happy!!!

Doesn't he look proud?
Lou also finished his project on the bank, has his stone wall finished and has his grass seed planted, just waiting for rain.  Certainly is going to make it much easier to cut the grass.
People that knew what it looked like before can really appreciate the difference.

Yesterday we broke an all time high it was 79 degrees, and today it is 53 degrees, and I am going to get back to my fall house cleaning.  I have certainly enjoyed being outside and will take advantage of the good days when I can.

I am still looking for someone to help Lou with the Work  Shop, as we want to jack it up and probably put some new support under it and someone to repair the skirting on our home.  We call people and get promises without results or they don't even return our phone calls.  I understand other home owners have the same problems.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Hair Wreath

October 19th - Sunday

While at the Glenn Curtiss Museum I took a picture of this wreath.  It is made from human hair that was collected by one individual.  It is then woven into this beautiful wreath.

I can remember when I was a child, my Grandma Gerow would brush my long dark brown hair then clean out the brush and roll the hair around her finger and put it in a special dish on her dresser and she would do the same for herself.  She did not make a wreath, she made jewelry.  I remember a pin that she often wore.  Now I wonder what ever happened to it.

I bet these dishes bring back memories to some of you also.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Preparations for Winter

October 18th - Cloudy and Cool

We have returned home from our trip to the Wine Country.  We certainly enjoyed our time spent touring the area.  I had not mentioned that we also spent time at Sampson Naval/Air Force Base.  There is now a Museum there where there once was a "brig".  I know very little about the Navy, so found the museum very interesting.
The entrance to the Museum

I found this picture interesting, as when Al and I visited Sarasota, FL the last time, there was a huge statue of this scene.

When Lou and I came back on Friday night after having dinner with Ande and Dennis and their granddaughter Jaimie we found the campground had filled up completely.  The pumpkin man was next to us.  The majority of the people were square dancers and they were there for a weekend of square dancing.  We went up to watch them dance; however, they were having a meeting and we had to check out by 1:00, so didn't get to see them.  We did see several couples that we knew.  We would have stayed a little longer, but we had told Brion and Janet we would be home for the weekend, as Spencer and Meredith were coming up.

We had breakfast with them on Monday morning as they were heading back to Virginia.  Lou and I had not met Meredith before and enjoyed getting a little acquainted with her.

We spent the early part of the week getting the RV cleaned up and winterized and back into the barn, thankfully we had good weather to accomplish that project.  Lou went back to working on his bank project and building the stone wall.
Lou working on the flower bed.
Lou has worked on this bank off and on for the five years that he has lived here and now has the idea of making a stone wall and adding dirt to it from a ditch that he is going to dig that will house a sluice pipe.  Then we can plant more wild flowers in the spring.  Many years ago this was a dump and Al and I have picked junk out of here and hauled it away for years, we cut down trees  the year before Al died, I have picked rock, Susie came over and helped me pick rock, Estee and I dug up weeds, it has been a constant  project, and you can see it shows progress.  Lou has mowed a lot of it and what he doesn't mow, I have a couple of guys that use their weed eaters on it.

The next project is putting in the sluice pipe that Lou has at his house.  We have to wait for Brion to bring it over on the trailer, then we can start on it, hoping to get rid of the flooding we have every time we have lots of rain.  My brother thinks Lou likes to dig ditches!!

While Lou was doing this, I cleaned out the spouting on the garage and when I did that I noted some shingles on the coal shed had come off, so I got Krista to nail new ones on for me.  I can not hammer due to my shoulder, so she took care of that job for me.  I made a new roof for a bird house and painted it and got it back up.  Seems good to get some little jobs done.  Krista also helped us get our treadmill set up in the garage and I am really enjoying using that each day.  I thought I would be sore, but am in better shape than I thought.
New shingles in place

Susie had her surgery on Monday and got the final biopsy back late yesterday and it was cancer free, praise God.  She is pretty miserable pain wise, but coping by doing some of her knitting, but certainly she is not used to having to stay at home.

Yesterday, I did three pressure cookers of beets, so that takes care of the rest of the things in our garden, and now we can get it rototilled  and it will be ready in the spring.  Hopefully, it will do better next year.

Next week will be busy, we have appointments at the Bath VA and in Carlisle, but doesn't sound like weather that we could work outside.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Seneca Lake - Watkins Glen, NY

October 9th  - Sunny 60 degrees

After a breakfast of scrambled eggs and sausage we left for the Seneca Lake Winery Tour.  Our first stop was at Finger Lakes Distilling.   Lou and I had read about them about a year ago and had planned on visiting them and our visit was most rewarding.  We had hoped to be able to take in a tour; however, they only do them by appointment and only on Saturdays, so we will have to wait until a later time.  The cost of the tour is $18.00 per person and it usually lasts for 1 ½ hours.

It was a perfect morning for sight seeing, as the fall foliage was beautiful, it was a bit windy and the water was a bit choppy.  We went on up the trail and stopped at a farm market and picked up some winter squash and some fresh cheese and ended up at Wagner’s Winery at lunch time.  We ate at Genny Lee Café.  Lou and I both ordered French Onion Soup and split a wonderful steak burger.  Our view of Seneca Lake was very picturesque and enjoyable as we ate our delicious lunch.

After our lunch we went into the tasting room, which now includes wine and beer.  We were able to do some Christmas shopping which always pleases us when we can share our travels with friends and family.

We continued to drive the rest of the length of Seneca Lake and then down the other side, then we drove past Waneta Lake and Lamoka Lake.  The sunshine and the fall foliage were just beautiful on the country roads that we traveled.  We arrived back home about 5:00 pm.  Thankfully, I had prepared our dinner this morning, so I just popped it in the oven and in an hour we sat down to a new recipe of Italian Style Chicken and Peppers, tossed salad, garlic bread and some of our new wine.

Tomorrow morning Lou has an appointment with the audiologist at 8:00 am, so we will be off early.

Glenn H. Curtiss Museum - Hammondsport, NY

October 8th - Wednesday - Partly Cloudy, Windy, fall day in New York State.

We arrived at our campsite at Camp Bell in Campbell, NY on Tuesday afternoon and got set up and enjoyed a leisure dinner of escalloped potatoes and pork chops, some of Krista’s homemade apple sauce and fresh green beans.  I had baked some pumpkins bars and brought them along for dessert and they tasted good with some fresh coffee.  With the site that we were assigned we were able to get our dish television to work, and Lou was delighted and right at home.  We were able to get in a nice walk while our dinner baked in the oven.

It was a beautiful evening, it reached 72 degrees and a beautiful sunset that we could view from our window.  It rained during the night and when we awoke in the morning, the sun was out and we had a quick breakfast of Canadian Bacon and eggs and we were off to the Curtiss Museum.  What a delight that was, we spent almost five hours in there.

I have been readying books about early women in aviation and they had a section on that depicting the pioneers in that situation.  Mr. Curtiss was instrumental in the invention of the motorcycle and I was amazed to see an Indian Cycle 1911.

We saw a motor cycle with a side car that Mr. Curtis made for his wife, the car that she sat in was a wicker seat.  Mr. Curtis set a record for the “Fastest Man in the World” in 1907 at 136.36 MPH on his motor cycle.

It showed the Curtis Model June Bug that was build in 1908, many people learned to fly using this model.  He received the first pilot’s license ever issued.  Number 1 in 1911.

As we made our way through the museum, there was a display that was dedicated to World War I and World Was II, as many engines that were used were made in plants from Hammondsport, NY.  He made Seaplanes that were made for the Navy.  We found an interesting fact, that he made the first travel trailer, I think that was in 1919.

He lived 52 years and was credited with over 500 inventions during his lifetime.

Lou got to go back into the Restoration Shop and talk to Norm and they found they knew several people and had worked on one of the engines that was in the museum.

Throughout the museum, there was a display from the Corning Embroidery Guild of their handiwork and it was amazing and I had to take time to look at their work

Also on display were hand made doll houses and I am afraid that pictures can not do them justice.  We certainly enjoyed viewing them.

After leaving the museum, we drove into Hammondsport and ate lunch at Luna Mezza.  Lou and I ordered Seaford Bisque and a Reuben Sandwich and we each had coffee.  It was the best coffee that we have had in months.  In fact, our lunch was marvelous, the restaurant was clean and nicely decorated with lovely dining music.  Dave Fice is the manager.  Certainly a stop  worth making.  Our soup was full of tasty seafood and served piping hot.  We split our sandwich and our waitress graciously brought us an additional plate without having to ask for it.

After lunch we drove to Bully Hill Winery, it was getting late when we arrived and it was made very apparent by the staff that we didn’t have much time to taste and select our wine for purchase; however, we did make a purchase and left before they ushered us out.
This is the first travel trailer

It was interesting, as we were going up the step to the tasting room, I met a gal on the steps and she said, “don’t I know you?” I smiled at her and she then continued, she did know me from the office and we chatted for a bit and caught up on five years quickly before we parted.  Retirement is nice, but I do miss my patients!!

The View from Bully Hill was wonderful

It was a nice day and we certainly enjoyed our day at Keuka Lake.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Epoxy in the Garage

October 7th - Beautiful Fall Day

I finally  got the garage cleaned and scrubbed the garage floor and Lou decided that it needed a fresh coat of epoxy applied.  After, my late husband died, Dr. Nespola helped me make the decision to apply epoxy to the garage floor for the first time and what a job it was, but it certainly was worth all of the effort.  I am able to keep it as clean as the kitchen floor.

Lou had noted that where the tires of the car had been parked with salt on the tires over the last five years, it had pitted, so I contacted Sherman  Williams Paint Company to see what we needed to do to apply another coat of the same product to the existing coat.   We needed to clean the floor, fill the area with a special concrete filler, let it dry and then sand all areas that were still shinny, then we were free to apply a new coat, as long as it was the same brand.

I did the stripping along the edges and Lou rolled on the "glue".  You have only two hours to complete the task, so we worked right along.
As you can see it turned our beautifully.

We even had enough to do the area where the kiln sits

We had to wait 72 hours until we could bring the car back into the garage, and we had rain, so we waited a little longer just to make sure it was cured enough.  It certainly looks good to us.

Now when we get back from our trip to the Wine Country, we will get everything settled back into place.  We are going to set up the treadmill to use until we go south.