This picture was taken last year after Mother Nature dropped enough snow that we needed our driveway plowed. It was a mild winter for all accounts so we were lucky. The Old Farmer's Almanac is calling for a harsh winter here this year. I actually like winter especially for the picture taking opportunities but those days leading up to winter are just too grey here.
It's that time of year. Along with the cold comes thoughts of winterizing the house along with the gardens. From now until the first of October, I will be spending fifteen minutes a day checking for air leaks and calking as necessary but the real winterizing can't start until the wind picks up enough to find any drafts. Then I increase the amount of time spent detecting air leaks and problem spots. Each year there is less to seal but with the high heating fuel costs, it pays off to always be on the look out for air leaks as that means money lost.
At the same time the garden needs winterizing so the first step is to harvest everything possible including green tomatoes. That will be our weekend job if the weather holds. Then all vegetation except herbs will be removed as will the grids and the soil will be prepared. We'll add a layer of leaf mulch then bag the rest of the leaves to compost through the winter.
Thursday, September 28, 2006
Tuesday, September 26, 2006
The Good: Yesterday was totally awesome yet tiring. Much of my day was spent on genealogy, mainly on the ancestry.com website. I've subscribed there for quite some time as it does end up saving me a lot of travel time and leg work. Still seeing the actual records are very important for what I'm doing and ancestry.com doesn't cover everything. I wasn't able to break through the brick wall but I think I was able to knock a few holes in it. With what I found yesterday, leg work will be needed so a genealogy fact finding trip needs to be scheduled. Several important images were downloaded so that was a real bonus.
As with any research, there are certain protocols to follow in genealogy regarding sources and collection of information. I admit to being a stickler about details so have lots of tid bits about my ancestors' lives. I have several strict rules for my genealogy research as I have put considerable time and money into endeavor. I insist on paper copies for all records including family group sheets, photographs, documents, digital images and etc. All paper copies are organized into main lines of research. All paper copies are protected in page protecters then stored in the appropriate binder as I get the pages. All digital images are stored in three locations along with a total back-up of all my records. All digital images are printed. Finally my research database is backed-up each time I use the software. One copy is kept in a safety deposit box.
On the subject of genealogy, a digital camera is almost a must but if you've read my other blogs you will know how important a digital camera is to me. It is always with me in the garden. Digital images help me identify friends, foes, weeds and so much more. In cooking the camera simply captures food porn. I heard that term and for some reason it has stuck. I'm still trying to perfect getting good images of food. Now, in genealogy a digital camera will save countless dollars and for anyone who has not done genealogy before, it is an expensive obsession. A lot of money is spent on traveling, photocopies, and subscriptions. Some libraries will charge as much as a dollar a copy from microfilm. With each document being several pages this can really add up but with a digital camera set correctly you can get a very good image without the cost.
Thursday, September 21, 2006
I'm doing the most amazing thing while my tomato soup is cooking. I'm taking apart my Canon A 5 530 digital camera of only 6 months. It dropped a very short distance when the lens was extended. so we took it back to the store and they said because we didn't buy the extended warranty at only $89 that would not have covered a drop anyways the only thing we could do was send it away to see what repairs would be necessary. That would cost us $40 for them to look at it then $80 per hour for them to fix it. My husband said "hell no" bought a Canon A540 so I get to play with the A530. It would have cost us more to repair than the camera was worth. I have the lens so it is now retracting when the camera is shut off but the lens must be in wrong as nothing is showing up on the view finder so bit by bit I'm taking the thing apart. Very interesting! I figure I have nothing to lose but if I can get the camera working again we will have two digital cameras.
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
It's been a funk day. It started out as a "where do I start day" then moved quickly to a "quick clean up and wait" followed by "I'm tired" day. It started at 4:30 this morning but I did end up going back to bed for another hour or two. I ended up turning on the furnace as it was quite cool outside. Still my mind is on my illusive ancestor even though I knew I had to focus on finishing the produce for the next few days.
The kitchen was loaded with produce so "where to start" was an issue. I decided drying green peppers, sautéing mushrooms for freezing, and making tomato soup. I'm a strong advocate of keeping knives sharp at all times so it really ticked me off when I cut my thumb. In most cases a dull knife is the guilty party but in this case it was a very, very sharp knife. The cut was clean and refused to stop bleeding. By now I was really ticked so I bandaged up the thumb and decided the great outdoors was needed. Except, I came in with another basket of tomatoes and two more zucchini.
I just got out of the bath. It was well spiked with epsom salt, nice and hot to take away all the aches, pains and stress. As I drifted into the warmth, my illusive ancestor danced in front of my eyes. It's funny I can picture his face! I know so much about him! I woke with a start realizing that I was so close yet was missing just "something" but even now I can't think of what that something is. For some reason it feels like this ancestor is somehow speaking to me but I'm still missing something. This is very annoying but I decided to deal with the problem using the "less is more". When my mind is peaceful and not focused on something, the answer comes. So for the next little bit aside of canning I will be focusing on keeping my mind peaceful, meditating, and generating inner energy to hopefully help me find the answer. I know it is there it just is not in my current awareness. Despite the fact I have a lot of produce to finish processing tomorrow, I might just spend the day cemetery stomping.
My husband hates that term and thinks it rather morbid I do this. I basically take pen,a lot of paper, charcoals, digital camera, sandwich and drinks then spend my entire day in the cemetery of choice. But I know for sure there is no tombstone for this ancestor. Still a day of cemetery stomping might not be a bad idea. Maybe it will give me a clue for my illusive ancestor.
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
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I'm not sure why I decided to create this blog. Maybe just to get what's happening in writing or maybe just to share my feelings. I have two other blogs, Garden Gnome Wanderings and Mom's Cafe Home Cooking. Both of those blogs have specific purposes. This one really doesn't have a specific purpose, it just is.
I've been up since 3:30 AM this morning. I have one huge brick wall that is being stubborn. The weather has been getting cooler so the garden work has lessened but the kitchen work has increased. Despite that my thoughts have turned to genealogy. From now until closer to Christmas much of my attention will be on genealogy. After Christmas my full attention will be on genealogy until at least the seed catalogues arrive.
My database has just reached 6,500 people. It is more than a database though. In my quest to discover my heritage, I have turned over every nook and cranny to find even the smallest details of my ancestors' lives. I love discovering my ancestors' lifestyle, what they wore, what they ate and anything else I can find. One of my lines is scheduled for the publisher's but I really want to break through this other line. It would be a very interesting line to publish.
Now the brick wall is just being stubborn and that is really bothering me. My goal this year is to find the missing link. I know how this person comes down and I have all the information from me to him. What I am missing is one generation! He was French Canadian and Catholic. Both of those records are very, very extensive yet I cannot find him. So instead of sleeping, I'm searching once again, going over the copious amount of notes just in case I've missed one small clue that could make a difference.
Dawn is just starting so it's time to head to the garden to watch the world wake up. My mind is full of questions so quiet time is what is needed.