Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Projects for a Rainy Day

Monday morning I made a hearty meat and potato sort of breakfast and hurried through kitchen tidying as I had an appointment in town.
J. was awaiting the arrival of a friend [from Illinois] who used to visit in Wyoming.
I returned to find  J. and Rick downstairs discussing the finer points of the "family room" renovation.
They had already made a tour of the acreage and the two old barns, examined and pronounced on the tractor and haying equipment.
When I could get in a word I asked R. if we could offer anything to eat.
It turned out he had left Tennessee at 5 in the morning and not stopped for a meal.
J. hauled the turkey carcass from the fridge and set about slicing light and dark meat, toasting whole wheat bread, while I sliced tomato, onion and shredded a bit of cabbage.
Thus fortified by thick sandwiches we set out in the car to show Rick a bit of Adair County.
By the time we returned dark clouds were gathering.
Dusk came early and brought with it the rain.
The sight of trees swaying in the wind and rain pelting down the glass of the dining room door made me feel that comfort food was in order for supper.
Rick had voiced the hope that we might have fruit with the meal.
I made a batch of fluffy pecan waffles, served with our home made butter and
Vermont maple syrup. From our winter stash I opened a jar of pink applesauce and a jar of pears.
It was a heartening and homey repast, and I'm happy to note that our home-canned fruit is delicious.

Rick took his leave for home this morning after which I mentioned to J. that it looked a perfect day to change out the light fixtures.
[I suggested this in a very off-hand way as I have previously dropped several hints and the resident builder didn't feel the timing was right.]
I retreated to the basement to deal with laundry and upon returning upstairs was agreeably surprised to find
that J. had brought in the boxes of light fixtures and was assembling tools.

The ceiling fixtures in the house were all functioning but very dated.
The two in the kitchen/dining area dangled lop-sidedly on drop chains and during our March move-in had clunked the three tall Whitehurst men repeatedly until our son [the tallest at 6'3"] had hoisted them nearer the ceiling.
I felt that plain, clean-lined fixtures would be in keeping with the small, simple house, as well as being economical.  With that in mind, we chose some with gleaming stainless steel look trim, which matches the electical plug covers we installed in the remodeled kitchen area.
We need to buy some of the energy-efficient spiral bulbs next trip into town.
I'm pleased with the effect of our choices.

It has been two months since [in J's absence] I yanked wall paper off the bathroom walls and managed to trowel on a base coat of dry wall patch.
J. decided that the bathroom lights couldn't be installed without first completing the "mudding" of the walls.
This also meant pulling out a rather hideous mirrored "medicine cabinet."
I heard the screeching of nails, mutterings, the whine of a small power saw.
Poking my head around the door I asked if all was going well.
"Oh," said J. resignedly, "About what I should have expected.  Whoever put in this cabinet hill-billy rigged it!"

J. is using the "rough-plastered" technique which he perfected for the drywall bits in the log houses he built in Wyoming.
It has a rustic texture and means far less finish sanding--therefore less choking dust.
I'm not sure if I will be allowed to paint the small room or if I must meekly occupy myself elsewhere.

My own creative effort of the day was to dismember the roast turkey, closely supervised by
Raisin the Cat.
I produced a kettle of savory soup, adding a qt of home-canned tomatoes.
A nice slab of white meat has been frozen and the barn kittens treated to a plate of tidbits to keep up their strength during this dreary weather.


  1. Oh those sweet barn kittens! How spoiled they are. Bit by bit you are getting things done. I must say I admire your 'stick-to-it-ive-ness!
    I went to the shelter for the first time today. We have a Manx cat just like your barn kittens.

  2. It sounds like a very productive rainy day with good food and friendship was enjoyed at your place.

    I've never heard the term hillbilly rigged and like it, better than some others I've heard through the years.

    Enjoy your week ~ FlowerLady

  3. "less choking dust" oh how good that sounds! The pasterer is coming to do Husbands office on Saturday- masks at the ready :D