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Friday, September 14, 2012

I'm Guilted, Xena Knows No Guilt

Rusty with his new toy
I ended my last blog with a promise of better news this time from the farm, retirement and writing. I actually said next week, but I didn't make that deadline. I've never had a bug hang on so long. Now, at last, the only thing I'm left with are allergies.



The birds scored this one


Farm news: Although we're inundated with tomatoes and peppers, much of the other crops are about done. Our freezers are nearly full. We have to add a top shelf to the pantry. Frank has put up jars of pickles and relish with still more to do. He's also started on the pears. Christie got all the red delicious apples turned into sauce or pie filling. We had to get them all off the tree because the birds were feasting. And we have jars of tomatoes, tomato sauce and tomato soup. But there will be more. I even jarred some tomatoes one day. I prefer to stay out of the kitchen but my guilt wouldn't let me leave Christie with that much to do, even though she loves to cook. She's made sun dried tomatoes in the oven. Delicious. I  harvested the balance of the onions, leeks and radishes today. We've given several bags of patty pan squash and okra to the local food bank. This weekend we're giving some of our harvest to a Farmer's Market on consignment. May as well see if we can make a few bucks with our lovely bounty.

Retirement: I'm not actually retired but we're calling it retired since Frank has achieved that status. And we're living on lowly retirement income supplemented with my writing royalties. Frank is wondering if he really is retired. Working the farm, keeping up the house and all that goes with it - not much time for the front porch rocker. And right now with all the crops coming in, none us of are twiddling our thumbs. Lance is now calling his dad Pickle. He's getting pretty good at canning pickles and relish.

In an effort to conserve money, I have my hair done at the beauty college in Prescott. Yesterday was my second visit and this time I did the whole banana with color and cut. OH. MY. GOSH. I was in the chair an hour before poor Sara could begin. Every step has to be approved by an instructor. So after Sara and I decided what colors to do my measly twelve foils, it took her an hour to convince two instructors what she wanted to do would work. I just about got out of the chair and said forget it. But I felt so sorry for her. She's a cutie and says things like "how's that look, Mama?" She calls everyone Mama when she's being cocky. My time is the price I pay for keeping the cost down on my hair. She did a good job and $36 sure beats $150.

Xena considering Rusty's new toy
Another way to save money - the used everything store in Chino Valley has stuffed toys for fifty cents. Xena tears up all toys so I quit buying Rusty new ones. He used to have a whole basket but he's down to one. We hide it from Xena. Now we can replace toys without breaking the bank. We found one that laughs like a baby. We bought Xena some without a noise maker. I think she feels slighted. Digging out the noise maker is what gives her joy.

And Writing: My agent is out of town until the 17th which is my deadline for getting the revised book one in the series and the two synopses for books two and three to her. And I'm already done! Or at least I think I am. I'll read over them several more times. Tomorrow I get back on my regular writing schedule. The wedding, the illness and now the overwhelming harvest have had me all out of whack. I'm excited to get going on book two. I thought I had the first three chapters of book two written but now book two is book three. So tomorrow I start on the real book two. My titles are The Art of Love and Murder, Southwest of Love and Murder, and The Legacy of Love and Murder. I'm stoked.

8 comments:

  1. Brenda, I just got a recipe for tomato jam... :)

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    1. Have you tried it? Is it good? My mom told me about tomato jam and that is one thing that I actually want to try - or if I can get Christie or Frank to try it for me. LOL

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  2. Understand about dog toys...Elsa expects one bag to squeak each month when I return from food shopping!! They all look like Raggedy Anns, sewed back up, many with missing appendages :) Have extra squeakers stashed when one gets broken...haha
    You have had quite the eventful summer!! Obvious how you look forward to making writing your top priority again...enjoy...your Grandma duties are just around the corner!!!

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    1. We had a toy hospital for awhile but no one wanted to play doctor so I threw them away. Can't wait until I am buying baby toys! Should be interesting keeping the dogs off those.

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  3. I'm so glad you're feeling better! It will be interesting to see how the winter goes with your stock pile of jarred and frozen food. You have all worked hard and it has paid off. Here's to getting back into the writing soon.

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    1. Yes! Right now I'm tying up onions to hang and dry. After lunch, I'm writing!!

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  4. How nice to meet your deadline early - Congrats!

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    1. Yes, feels good. Thanks for coming by, Lisa.

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