Monday, September 22, 2014

Monday 9/22

Doing some catch up from the weekend. On Saturday we went to the Apple festival at Boones Mill. Not many apples grown around here anymore so they could really change the name to Last Festival Of Summer.
A train was headed back north as we got out of the car.
A neat old store that went out of business years ago. The owner is hard to deal with otherwise many things would have gone in there by now.
Boones Mill police force and car.
The creek that runs through town along side US 220.
We got there early to watch the high school band march in across the bridge and go down the main street to open the festival.
They played the Star Spangled Banner as the flag was raise and then some of their marching songs. Lots more brass this year made for a better sound than recent years.
Lots of food vendors and crafts, this group was making apple butter in a copper kettle with a motor driven stir device.
Kudzu covers many of the slopes and trees around the town, it is out of control.
I thought he was dead but Elvis showed up for awhile.
Debbie's band started playing at noon and played for an hour. The high school band went to a competition at another school for the rest of the day.
Debbie and I went out past Ferrum and I bought a load of hay from a guy.
Small bales but easy to handle.
We ended up picking Carrie up about 11 when the band got back into town.

Sunday started off hauling manure to the garden. It was too muddy but it really needed to be done. Three loads completed the manuring of the patch that I tilled up weeks ago. Weeds and grass have started to cover it as it has been too wet to get in and work the ground any more.
I went back out to where we got the hay yesterday and helped the old guy put sealer on his paved driveway. He gave me a load of hay for my help. Not as many bales today but they were a lot heavier and probably more hay.
Sunny today and cooling down some. If it would just not rain for a week or so.
We got a new team of oxen at work today. Their names are Jake(right) and JJ. I think I can tell them apart.
They are nice looking animals and well trained from what I saw.
I got home and the persimmons by the road smell and look so good but until a frost comes, you don't want to get them anywhere near your mouth. Like a spoon of alum.
Going out to help the guys at the brewery in awhile, they have lots to do now that they are going to all of the fall festivals and selling to the new restaurant in town.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Thursday 9/18

Yesterday was spent converting buckets of tomatoes into canned tomatoes, spaghetti sauce(pictured), soup(plain and chunky). They all looked alike except the yellow tomatoes that I put in Lightning jars.
Long day and I have had enough of them for a few days until more ripen.
I have plans to make more pizza sauce when that happens.
Some photos that I haven't posted since Monday. I like the blues and purple in the shadows that contrast with the yellow.
Low patches of fog.
Alfalfa.
Close up of a moon and stars watermelon that was grown in the garden at the farm museum. It was a variety from the early 1800s. We sliced one today and it was darker colored and had a richer flavor than supermarket varieties. I saved some seeds.
View of the sky as I was nearing the top of a hill on the way to work.
View on the top of the hill.
Started working on the Blue Ridge Folklife Festival at work today. I am getting things ready for the music groups. The web page will be evolving over the next couple of weeks as more info is added. I researched each group today and we will put links on the site so that you can hear a sample of the music.
I went out after work and got a sample of hay from a guy and brought it back for Dusty to test eat and it passed the test. So I may have a supply of hay for the winter. Happy horse.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Monday 9/15

Fog and black and white early this morning.
The sun appeared and I went to color.
We had barely made the bus with much horn blowing, rope pushing and yelling on my part. It was a nice morning as the bus quickly disappeared into the mist. I took my time and got some photos on the way to the house.

Debbie's rose still has the faded first bloom and now a bright new one has opened.
Took some more on the way to work. Corn stalks with doves on the wires.
Mowing hay.
Here is one for George, a 50 year old dump truck. You would have to make two trips with that one.
Worked on more tomatoes this evening.
I have been saving my seeds for several years and have a Roma that doesn't have much juice. A regular tomato will flow like water.
Ended up with a pot of puree that we will turn into some sauce or soup tomorrow. Still a bucket full in the root cellar.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Sunday 9/14

The little brats had mama hen up on the roof today.
Cloudy again but the ground was solid so I got some things done in the morning including fixing a fence, stacking wood that had fallen out of the firewood wall.
Cleaned some of the dirt from the coca cola bottle that I found along the railroad the other day and it turns out to be a 1923 patent with 1928 date and made for the Rocky Mount bottling company that has just been restored.
Picked tomatoes this afternoon, still lots of green ones, this is a very late crop for us.
Used about a half a bucket to make 9 pints of salsa. Put on Tattler lids, this is the 3rd canning for many of the lids, so nice to be able to just clean and use them again.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Saturday 9/13

Catching up since Sunday, it has been mostly cloudy or rain this week so I haven't done a whole lot outside as it is so muddy.
I have been using the old 1999 Sony off and on now that I have a computer that can read floppy disks.
As we were coming back from the bus stop on Monday I heard all kinds of engine noise and thought a logging truck was up behind the trees but it was the Memphis Belle heading south. By the time I got the old camera out and powered up there was just this distant shot to take but it shows a typical B17 with that big tail sticking up.
The old camera doesn't do too bad on macro, here is a stink bug on poke berries.
On Wednesday I went to Lexington to have breakfast with an old buddy. It was supposed to be sunny but I guess they didn't say where.
Went by my mother's and dug up a cracked drain pipe that was hooked to her drain spout and put a new one in as her cellar was getting water in it.
Took a photo of the big brewery just north of Lexington, it is the Devil's Backbone Outpost. It is an impressive building but I would just as soon have a cup of ale from Callaway.
I brought home 2 canners that were at my mother's, the one on the left was what my great grandparents canned with. I plan on putting them by the wood stoves to put fire wood in.
We actually got some sun on Thursday morning so I took a photo of a train passing through Ferrum.
Went over to the farm to get some tables out of a barn with a coworker and took some photos as I had never been in that building. A forge and anvil, what more could one ask for?
The ox was checking us out but soon lost interest as we didn't have anything to eat.
Debbie and I went to town to get Carrie from band practice and then to meet the teachers. It had clouded up and a hard storm went through by the time we were in the building. We have plenty of mud and don't need more rain but got even more on Friday evening.
Moss growing on the spring house wall. Today was the long awaited day when the plumber came to work on our water system. The pressure valve hasn't been working right and we often get about 5 or more seconds when there is no water before the system kicks in and it runs normally.
Here is the big tank and the valve is at the base, the actual pump is out in the water tank under ground.
Here was the problem, instead of a brass pipe, they used a galvanized steel one to connect the pressure switch. It should be hollow and it is packed full of rusty crud which seems to adhere to steel fittings.
So we put a new one on and gave it a little pressure to check for leaks as he had to cut a plastic pipe to move things around. I waited a couple more hours before turning he system on to let the glues dry good.  Using the 1999 camera today, photos are pretty good for low light.
Used the pole saw to cut an odd limb off of the damaged tree on the hill. I am studying this tree and with this limb gone, I think I can drop it without mashing down the other trees. That bush to the left will probably get flattened but the tree is badly broken and must come down. I will fall right beside the wood pile which is fine.
A partly cloudy afternoon view of the antenna pole and Cahas mountain in the distance. Debbie took the kids to the agriculture fair this afternoon so I did some work and played with the old camera.
The chicks are continuing to grow and get feathers.
Getting too big to fit in the box with the hen so we will have to move everyone around before too long but that will involve some fence work.