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Monday, August 19, 2013

My dryer died. HURRAY! And the rest of my weekend.

The mere fact that I was happy to go back to work should tell you how the weekend went.  Friday was supposed to be a day where I got lots and lots done, and had plenty of time to prepare the meal for Girls' Night Dinner.  The best laid plans....

I did get to pick peaches early that morning with Melanie, who is going through a very rough patch getting her husband through the morass of the medical institution.  What an eye-opener.  I tell you what - if I ever face hospitalization or any medical emergency, I want Melanie in my corner.  She is fierce.  She is relentless.  She is an amazing force for the care of those she loves.

Then I dropped something off with Kay's husband and the half-hour visit morphed to two hours.  It has been, is and will be rough for him.  And all of us.

Then I had to get home and whip my dirty house into shape, along with putting together the complex meal I had planned.  That's what I get for being a show-off.  Many moons ago, in one of my earlier former lives, I was quite the gourmet cook.  If the process was French and complicated - I was all over it!  I discovered Ballotine of Chicken and there was no looking back.  Of course, I was younger and had more time and energy back then.  Fast forward to now, and I have less energy and if my time was any tighter it would be a girdle.  Luckily, I still have my special little poultry knife and the original diagrams.  So I (none too) quickly boned a whole roasting chicken (9+lbs) into one whole fillet, which was then stuffed with ricotta, chard, onions, fresh sage, and an egg for binding.  This is then rolled up, tied and roasted, basted with butter.  My original recipe calls for a 'mousse' made with pureed chicken breast, seasonings and an egg for binding; then pistachios and strips of ham are placed in it, it's rolled, tied and roasted - creating a lovely geometric pattern when sliced.  I opted for the fast, slow food option.

Dinner was great - then I was up and at 'em to get dinner ingredients together to tote up for my dad's 91st birthday celebration with a few close friends and family.  Then back home.  Then up and at 'em Sunday to reclean the house and get dinner together for my parents and aunt, who were coming down to see the farm.  Then I collapsed.

There were a few high points this weekend:  my dryer died.  Hallelujah!  The Ameracauna chicks went into their coop by themselves!  Halle-hotdamn-lujah!!!

As for the dead dryer celebration, I have had this dryer since I moved in.  I got it on freecycle and it has run without a hitch for almost 8 years.  I can't complain.  But I don't WANT a dryer.  I hang my clothes out three out of four seasons, with an occasional hang-out during winter if I can.  The rest of the time I use my drying racks.  And I happen to like crunchy towels.  So there.  This means I can pull the dryer out and give it to a neighbor for scrap, then put shelves up in its place.  A much better use of the space.

And, as any true homesteader can tell you, having even one step taken out of your evening chores is cause for celebration.  For over two weeks, I have had to go out every night and catch the four Ameracaunas and toss them into their coop.  Every stinkin night.  Last night, I sighed and grabbed my butterfly net and trudged out.  They were in!  Woot!  Now, if the turkeys would just take the hint.

19 comments:

  1. Look at all the lives you touched this weekend in a kind and caring way!
    As for housecleaning, I love Cessa's line from long ago...."they don't come to see your house, they come to get out of theirs!"

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    1. Sylvie - That is a good way to look at it, thank you! Yes, but I still have to deal with the tumbleweeds of cat/dog hair. (I will have to use that line...)

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  2. That's some chicken dish - I'm in awe of your cooking prowess.

    I never seem to have enough time lately either. Between the things I want to do and the things I feel I need/want to do, it's a bit overwhelming sometimes.

    Funny that you like crunchy towels. I have to say I'm not ready to take that leap, even though it's such a dry climate here that it probably makes some sense.

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    1. Linda - Thank you! I hate to tell you how long it's been since I've made that dish. Well over 20 years...
      It reminds me of the old Pennsylvania Dutch saying, "the faster I go, the behinder I get"! Of course, having your entire kitchen torn up has got to make things difficult. I think of crunchy towels as good for my circulation... :)

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    2. Gotta get my two cents worth in here . . . I had always heard that old saying as, "The hurrier I go, the behinder I get!" Crunchy towels is the only thing I DON'T like about drying clothes on the line or on racks. But heck, I should follow your line of thinking. Who needs a loofah sponge in the bath if one has crunchy towels?

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  3. I'm having trouble with my new hens too. You give me hope. There will be no more late night roosting in the trees! Limited outdoor privileges until they figure this out, darn it.

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    1. TM - I do think that some breeds are more stupid than others. I have NEVER had such a hard time getting new hens to figure out where they are supposed to roost, than with these. And it's not like they have a vast range to deal with - they're in a small, enclosed space! You go out there and be firm. :)

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  4. Congrats on the dead dryer and the new shelf space! When my dishwasher 'died,' I did the same thing.
    That was a lotta cookin' girl...but I'll bet it was fun! :)

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    1. Candy - You know, it WAS fun! It was the house-cleaning that was not... :)

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  5. Oh, I am so NOT a gourmet cook like you! If a recipe has too many steps or involves too many dishes or pans, it never makes a debut in my kitchen.

    The description of your weekend has left me exhausted. I need a nap now.

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    1. Mama Pea - Yet you are patient enough to make that delicious apple strudel-type thing that is difficult enough to make one's hair go grey...
      Move over - so do I! :)

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  6. Hooray for the dead dryer and line dried laundry. I sleep so much better on fresh air infused linens. I love baking but I'm an anxious cook. Dinner parties have me hot, bothered and exhausted. How did you do it all? I was worn out just reading about your weekend.

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    1. Susan - I love the smell of air dried sheets! It always surprises me when I pull out new sheets from the linen closet and they STILL smell like fresh air! I make lists, Susan. Lots and lots of lists!

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  7. I love French food, but don't have some of the time for that either. BUT I do have some new recipes for "salad as a meal" by Patricia Wells. I got it from the library and scanned some of the faster recipes. Our dryer died too, RIP, but no hanging out for me, allergies. I love our new one, drys really fast, bigger drum, less energy used. Ah well. I've done that too- go to work to rest!

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    1. LHB - Ah, yes. Allergies would not fare well with air-dried laundry. That salad as a meal sounds great - I will have to look that up.

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  8. I'm glad my dryer has not died yet. If I hung laundry out I would have to rewash by the time it's dried due to the dust ......

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    1. TL - Dust is not a problem here. Birds, on the other hand, can make you rewash your laundry a few times.

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  9. That one extra chore sometimes does kill you. I have one young chicken who is determined to roost in the lorapetelum and every night I have to crawl onto a bucket to reach it so I can put it in the coop. So annoying. I think it's a rooster, so it's time may be limited anyway. I just to be the one to eat it, and not give that honor to a raccoon! I mean, has a raccoon put that bird up for the past several weeks? I think not.

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  10. WH - I love learning a new word! So, your young (maybe) roo likes to climb on your fringe flower?? :) I agree with the sentiments. If I spend all the time shuttling the future dinner - it should be MY future dinner.

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