Monday, January 20, 2014

Walking in Winter Sunshine

Looking east across the big meadow from the edge of the woods.
The week just past was one of slow days, grey skies,  frosty mornings, piddling rain.
J. has been working in the garage, getting a Ford tractor ready for painting.
I was in the kitchen when he hastened in one afternoon, dripping blood from one hand and demanding that I find gauze bandages and disinfectant.
The chisel he was using had slipped and taken a chunk out of his left thumb. 
I don't like looking at such things, but managed to help him get the gash bound up.
It left him with a clumsy hand which he was in danger of banging at every turn.
He enlisted D. to help for the rest of the day with the tractor refurbishment.
G. remembered that M. had bought some protective 'splints' when he did a similar number on his finger several months ago and the loan of these has helped to save the poor thumb from further insult.
This would seem to have been the excitement of the week, quite sufficient.

A weathered cedar stump.
I can't think that I accomplished much beyond the usual rounds of meal preparation, some desultory housework.
J.'s birthday on Thursday, so his favorite pineapple-upside-down cake baked and served with mounds of whipped cream. Matt, Gina, and Devin here to help consume that treat--and we had quite demolished it before I thought to record the event with photos.

Moss gleams on another ancient stump adrift in oak leaves.
We missed our monthly first Wednesday grocery shop in the neighboring county as J. was away that week. [This is the day when those over age 60 are honored with a 10% discount.]
J. decided on Friday that we should stock up without the discount.
I must say, that it was simpler to get through the store without the usual crowd of elderly shoppers, many taking advantage of the stores' riding carts to bumble about the aisles.
We like to wander through Peddlers Mall if we have time-- a large building filled with stalls of goods for sale.
There are some stalls which have only junk--tired objects which appear to have been culled from basements or attics, dreadfully unappealing.
Others feature tidy displays of vintage furniture, collectible china and kitchen goods, small tools, decorative wares old and new.
I can often spot items which would be lovely to bring home--if we had a bigger house!
This was one of the few times we've been there when even the best stalls seemed disorganized and lacking in appealing wares.

A stem of dried vervain leans over an old cistern near the meadow ditch.
Friday was G.'s birthday [a day after her father's] so I brought home a bouquet of wildly colored mums --the tag called them 'neon blooms' a product of South America. I do wonder how such perishables can be picked, packaged and shipped from a faraway country to appear with an expected 
shelf life' of at least a week.
G.'s special dessert was a chocolate pudding cake--again with lashings of whipped cream.
[We are a family who brings on the whipped cream at the slightest excuse!]

Seed pods clinging to the remnants of summer wildflowers.

Fuzzy heads of goldenrod silhouetted against a rare blue sky.

The old disc harrow waiting for another summer.

Sunset this evening after a mild day of sunshine.
There have been few such days thus far this winter, giving an overall sense of a long spell of cold and dreary weather.
The forecast is for plummeting temperatures and cloudy skies moving in tomorrow to stay for the remainder of the week.
The prospect isn't a joyful one, but we have wood for the fires, cupboards full of food.
We have work to do, I have books to read, and I'm feeling a renewed commitment to quilt-making.
The family may have no need for yet another quilt, but I have a need to drive the cold winter away!


  1. Lovely homey essay. Do hope the injured thumb is healing well, - hands are so important and everything seems so clumsy when they are out of commission. I think I am able to do things sooner as my wrist heals with the aid of a plate and rods, - only play the piano lightly, and haven't tried to throw a weft yet, - still a lot of tenderness. Love that pretty sunset through the trees...

  2. I'm glad the birthdays were celebrated in time-honoured fashion - especially with the whipped cream! I have it seldom, so feel justified in doing honour to the thickly-stuffed chocolate roulade at Christmas!

    I am "trying" to get back to the girls' quilts, but pleuritic pain is making sitting for any length of time not really an option. Nor can I bend, or lift, or stoop or . . . Arggggggh!

    Your lead photo made me think instantly of Robert Frost - very evocative. We get the odd slot of sunshine, then it is back to grey January skies and/or more rain. I am keeping the faith though - the Hazel catkins are out along the lanes and that always makes me think spring isn't too far away, and the slightly lighter mornings and evenings underline the fact that the shortest day is nearly a month behind us now.

    I DID enjoy your letter and will try and reply today.

  3. I love that watery winter sun - such lovely photos. My mouth is watering (at 10.00am) at the mention of your pineapple upside-down cake. You can't have too many quilts....

  4. I do hope J's thumb heals up good and fast.

    We are expecting rain today ushering down another cold front for us. It was perfect out the past two days and took advantage of them working outside both days.

    Enjoy the rest of the week snuggle up indoors.

    Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady

  5. What a great way to celebrate birthdays - hope the two recipients had great days and also hope that J's thumb is feeling better now. I love your photos - typical of the bleached look of winter scenes.