Cirque du Shadowfey




posted at 11:56 PM on 15th November, 2009 (a Sunday)
Mood : happy
This post is just to say that my life is amazing and awesome and I have no real major complaints anymore. I was going back and reading my earliest posts and realizing just how much being heavily in debt and so on was making me a depressed cranky monster and in turn relying on peripherals to distract myself from how much things sucked.

I consider myself truly blessed to have gotten to HERE from THERE.
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posted at 1:06 PM on 10th November, 2009 (a Tuesday)
In-laws have gone, and the house is finally empty of guests again after weeks and weeks. I'm adapting, somehow.

The cats have come out of hiding. The sheep are in their own enclosure, now, which makes the geese very happy indeed. It has been alternating sun and clouds today, and I've opened the windows a smidgen to air the place out.

I'm tired, but I'm happy to have my house to myself! Now to figure out what to give the beast for dinner.
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posted at 2:49 PM on 3rd November, 2009 (a Tuesday)
Mood : accomplished
We now have barn cats and kittens, Muscovy ducks, Soay sheep, and Toulouse geese. The geese are still shy and settling in (we only got them this past Sunday) and as a result, I have no good pictures of them. We'll be getting two more tomorrow (hopefully female) in an effort to even out the male-female ratio, as our starter flock of Toulouse geese consists of three males and one female.

The party was a success, I think; we had around fourteen people in all, and I spent the day before it cooking for nine hours straight. There was pineapple chicken salad, spiced mixed nuts (coriander salted walnuts and brown sugar and cinnamon pecans), spinach salad with dried cranberries, blue cheese, pecans and tomatoes, asparagus salad with red bell peppers and artichoke hearts, two kinds of Aioulle spread, rolls, kitchen sink vegetable lasagna, lamb with lentils and peas and apricot, cinnamon clove sugar cookies, and a cinnamon-filled bundt cake.

If there were more, I forget. :P

And, without further ado, the pictures:

PicturesCollapse )
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posted at 9:02 PM on 23rd October, 2009 (a Friday)
The farm's been keeping us busy, especially with the soon-to-be arriving parents of the beast. Our latest expansion pack has been a flock of chocolate and blue Muscovy ducks, 22 strong in all (6 adult hens, 1 adult drake, 5 adolescents and 10 ducklings). I've been woken up a couple of mornings to find that the chocolate hen has used their shelter's roof to boost herself over the electric fence and into the pond; the beast has solved this by extending the fencing to enclose the pond. No more blearily dressing and rushing out to chase a recalcitrant duck hen back into the enclosure for me.

The kittens continue to grow apace; Nibs managed to smack me in the face with a claw today when I bent down to tie a shoelace, but as he was aiming for my hair, which I had let down, I can forgive it. Still, a surprising amount of blood from such an invisible scratch.

Wimsey has been yowling a lot and demanding on being involved in anything and everything I am doing until I sit down so he can snuggle up. The rest of the time he is yowling and demanding to be allowed out; his petulant demands go mostly unanswered, although he did get some chicken livers from the roast chicken I made the other night. The chicken scraps and bones went into the pot for stock, some of which helped me have dinner tonight; potstickers and chopped leek in chicken stock, mm. I do need to get soy sauce, though.

And without further ado, the real reason you all read this: pictures.

Kitties and duckies oh myCollapse )
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posted at 6:35 PM on 6th October, 2009 (a Tuesday)


Mood : exhausted
The kittens are doing well; things are otherwise still a bit chaotic. Most of the work on the house has been done, but there remains certain items (mainly stair-related); and, of course, a metric buttload (as opposed to imperial buttload) of unpacking to be done. Many items still are in the storage unit in Seattle, waiting to be ferried to the house - the beast is ferrying some today (too many; 28 boxes, going to be interesting figuring out where to put them).

The brackets arrived at Ace today and I took them home only to find out they're the wrong size. I suspect the larger size will turn out not to work either, locking us in to buying the overpriced Rubbermaid ones; hopefully I'll be proven wrong, but tomorrow I'll have to go back and return them and try the larger size. Sigh.

I made pickles last night; a version of half-sours, but not sure about the pickling spice I used, may end up having to toss them, which would suck. I am going to be making bread and butter pickles, pear jelly and preserved plums very soon; also salsa. Probably later this week.

The kittens are getting so big! My babies are growing up. Sniffle. The fencing arrived too, so we're looking into building a coop and getting chickens soon.

Too tired to write very much today, but here are some pictures behind the cut. fussylogic, if you got my invite I haven't seen a reply; let me know if your spam filter ate it!

PicturesCollapse )

More house pics when there's better light to shoot by. Also edited to add, for those three of you pestering me about my wishlist for housewarming presents, I /think/ this should be correct:

There's non-house-related stuff on it as it's a general list. :)
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posted at 5:48 PM on 21st September, 2009 (a Monday)

Kittens, Kittens, Kittens

I'm not even going to pretend this post is about much other than the kittens, because, well, even if it were, I've mostly only got pictures of kittens for you. Such is the way of things. There is some other random updating, so that you will have to read to get to the kitten pictures.

So, without further ado...Collapse )
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posted at 5:47 PM on 17th September, 2009 (a Thursday)

Furniture, Appliances, and KITTENS

Mood : cheerful
The new fridge and stove arrived today. I am reasonably ecstatic, even though the appliance delivery guys really so did not go above and beyond. It's not so bad as going under and within, but I think it's safe to say that he aimed for about elbow height and hit it. Solidly. On the humerus.

Very punny, kits...Collapse )
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posted at 8:21 PM on 15th September, 2009 (a Tuesday)

On Houses and Kittens, part the IV

Mood : cheerful
Okay, so I lied. But having checked on the kittens, tell me I shouldn't have posted these...

The cuteness! Fear it!Collapse )
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posted at 7:44 PM on 15th September, 2009 (a Tuesday)

On Houses and Kittens, part the III

Much of our work is somewhat invisible at the moment; pulling up electric fencing, getting rid of half-buried posts where trying to mow the grass and weeds could prove detrimental to one's health, etc. The beast has been keeping very busy with this work of late, and we're yet nowhere near done. However, one of the things we've done has been to acquire some barn cats for the workshop. Or more specifically, one barn cat. Four barn kittens.

CATatoniaCollapse )

Oh, and the kittens' names? What else? Tootles, Slightly, Nibs and Tink.
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posted at 7:35 PM on 15th September, 2009 (a Tuesday)

On Houses and Kittens, part the II

Mood : pleased
In continuationCollapse )
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posted at 7:15 PM on 15th September, 2009 (a Tuesday)

On Houses and Kittens

Mood : happy
Work has proceeded apace on the house, and as such I owe it to the people whom I have so shamefully neglected with my lack of posts. Herein there shall be some posts, and information, and pictures.

Cut for pictures and for textCollapse )

More pictures and more details in the next post.
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posted at 8:39 PM on 7th September, 2009 (a Monday)


Mood : happy
We have moved the cats into the new house. My mother is visiting and we're shuttling back and forth between the house and the apartment in Seattle, packing things up and bringing crates of stuff back each trip. Things are getting done more slowly than I'd have liked, but they are getting done, and (whoever willing), will continue to get done on time even if not according to my ideal timetable.

The downstairs is now entirely painted, except for the stairs/steps. The cats are very happy here and have even put aside their differences in order to share the bed on a regular basis; this despite being all confined to the upstairs for now.

Mom and I hit the labor day sales and in one day managed to line up a six-piece cherrywood bedroom set with king mattress and boxsprings for our bedroom and a queen steel carriage-gate frame and mattress and boxsprings for the guest bedroom, plus a La-Z Boy loveseat, couch, fold-out coffee table and corner table for the living room, and a new Maytag refrigerator and ceramic cooktop stove with double oven. It was frightening to spend that much money all in one day but we really did get amazing deals.

The floors should begin to be installed on Wednesday. Tomorrow we'll be doing more shuttling and when we get back, I'll be scraping off the wallpaper borders in the two upstairs bedrooms.

The housewarming is going to be on Halloween and loads of people have been invited. Hopefully anyone who didn't get an invite who wants one will drop a comment; the more the merrier, I'm not inclined to leave people out! It is very exciting, although a little nervewracking at the moment.

We have gotten to watch almost daily visitations by local blacktailed deer; we'll be making some arrangements to minimize those incursions when it comes time for crops and the like.
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posted at 5:02 PM on 23rd July, 2009 (a Thursday)

Basic Tomato Sauce

As I began to write for a LJ friend info on tomato sauce, it became very long and I realized that my tomato-fu has over the years become curiously intricate and entwined. While a certain amount of paring back is possible, I also want to provide context for the information, while making it plain where the limitations are - and aren't. Hopefully this is a joyful result, as tomato sauce should, in its heart, be at least somewhat joyful.

Basic Tomato SauceCollapse )
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posted at 3:18 PM on 2nd July, 2009 (a Thursday)

House Updates

Mood : happy
Inspection was yesterday. Summarizing, the house passed with if not flying colours, then certainly gliding colours. Some fairly minor things to be done and a list of seasonal and annual things they recommend in general be done to prolong the lifespan of the home, which I thought was a very nice (and helpful) tip.

The inspector was a nice guy, very humane - he noticed the duck pond was low on water and the fish in it might be unhappy, so we located a hose and ran it out to the pond to let it fill while he was doing the inspection until it was time to go. The fish looked a lot happier for it.

The beast and I have been doing a lot of work in figuring out what needs to be done (by us) and how we want to do it. Flooring is one of the big things, as usually people do that via financing and on credit, etc. I am wondering as to how the best way to handle it would be. (We want the existing carpet ripped out when we take possession and put in some form of hard flooring throughout. Bamboo has been the primary option under discussion, but we're open to other ideas too. If anyone has any thoughts on the matter, speak up! The only thing I'd rule out entirely is tile, as it's just much more expensive in terms of base cost of materials, labor, and time intensiveness.)

Also? We should totally keep bees. The property is much loved by them.
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posted at 10:52 AM on 24th June, 2009 (a Wednesday)


Mood : excited
Made an offer on a house.
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posted at 7:04 AM on 2nd April, 2009 (a Thursday)
Mood : depressed
To do list only of possible interest to selfCollapse )
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posted at 4:41 PM on 5th March, 2009 (a Thursday)
Mood : cheerful
As some folks know, I've recently taken up archery and have been trying to shoot at least a few times a week. I am noticing improvements already - both in my upper body strength and in my shooting. Today someone suggested I take pictures, so what the heck? Enjoy.

ShootingCollapse )
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posted at 4:08 PM on 4th March, 2009 (a Wednesday)

For the tea lovers...

Mood : busy
I know a lot of the folks who read my LJ are keen on tea in all forms (or, well, most forms) and so I'm going to mention a tea seller online who I can wholeheartedly and without reservation recommend. It's pretty much artisanal teas of very high quality :

I happen to have the fortune of knowing the fellow behind this endeavor. He's highly knowledgeable about teas, his family's been in the trade for a very, very long time. (He's Persian, for those of you who'd make the connection.) This is him taking up the family trade.

I may be getting a discount code; if so, I'll update this post later. If you are interested I can also pass it along to see if it generates more codes.
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posted at 7:05 PM on 2nd March, 2009 (a Monday)



scones scones
zante currant scones with butter and grapefruit marmalade. Only the butter was not homemade.

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posted at 4:36 AM on 3rd December, 2008 (a Wednesday)
Another approximately 1600 words done on paper. Will undoubtedly swell when I type it up; it always does. Too tired to right now, though.
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