Thursday, February 19, 2015

Excitement - over stupidity!

Ok, so my wife and I decided we should get our under-used trailer out of it's parking spot and do a little cleanup on it.  How tough could it be aside from the obvious washing, waxing, etc.?  So we back the big bad F-250 up to it and....  Hmmm,. can't get the tow ball under the trailer hitch!  Hmmmm.  I do remember when parking the trailer that I thought there wasn't much extra that I could raise the hitch.  How the hell do we raise the trailer hitch?  I've got to admit it took us any embarrassingly long time to figure out we needed to dig a couple holes to let the truck wheels down thus lowering the ball rather than raising the hitch. 

ANYWAY, 15 minutes with a pick axe (even the ground is tough out here) and a couple shovels allowed the hitch ball to dive under the hitch and away we could go!  Apparently during the time without the trailer the truck's rear suspension found another half inch or so of height.  Interesting!  So now we have the rig out and are cleaning away.  Not sure yet if we'll go anywhere; My wife isn't happy with the slideout; she is afraid it has gotten crooked in the frame somehow.  Maybe we'll just tow it over to Las Vegas and get the dealer's opinion. 

In my spare time I decided to make hummus.  No photos, sorry.  The recipes aren't tough.  The one I decided to follow included a can of chickpeas (garbonzo beans), tahini, yoghurt, garlic, EVOO, lemon juice, salt and pepper and a jalapeno.  They carefully recommend removing seeds and membrane from the jalapeno first. Then you basically beat everything up in the food processor and there you are.  Well, the jalapeno's we've been getting aren't very spicy so I not only don't remove the membrane, I add a second, quite small, jalapeno.  The first problem was that the food processor would just throw everything off to the side of the container without even mixing it.  Grrr!  Finally I pulled it all out and fed it into the processor a spoonful at a time.  Pain in the ass but it got the stuff to a reasonable consistancy.  Hmmm, I've got to admit, my inner Mexican (I'm from Iowa, German and Scotch-Irish parents, so he's not a big influence) failed me.  Damn, that's hot stuff!  Well, not to some people, but a little goes a long way for me.  Should have doubled up the garlic instead; can't be far enough from the vampires! 

We did have a little rain a couple weeks ago; just enough to wake the weeds really.  So we have to go kill weeds.  We have a fairly large yard and it's all covered with just rock so when the weeds grow they have plenty of room.  So my wife and I load up sprayers with Roundup and go to it.   We get tired spraying after a while so it takes us several days and took 18 gallons (68L) of spray!  We buy the concentrate whereever we can find it (Walmart or Home Depot) and it runs about a $1 a gallon of spray in the really large size and I've got a few more years worth besides.  I'm hoping most of our lawn mainenance is done for the year. 

Otherwise, not much to report.  It's been a REALLY mild winter.  Back in December the bird bath was freezing; not much since then.  The last half of January and most of February have been about 10 degrees (F) above normal.  For example, that means today was 74F (23C),  Not tough to take!  We had our daughter over for lunch last weekend and ate outside; had a hard time not just laying out there all afternoon.  Sorry Boston but there it is.  We'd sure love some of that snow melt though!

Friday, February 06, 2015

I am not dead

Stealing the title of my post from Croft is just one of the things that's kind of lame about these days.  It's being a nice quiet winter with a few bumps in the road.

Like lots of people my wife and I caught the bug that is going around though it was pretty mild for us.   My version included going through about a box of Kleenex a day for a week.  My wife's version was more about coughing her poor head off.  We spent quite a bit of time hiding at home and preparing comfort food for each other.  There are a couple other physical problems we are dealing with but this isn't that kind of blog.  Life in the fast lane!

We did manage to find some salmon that we smoked.  It's not the same as the wild caught Pacific salmon we used to get in the Pacific Northwest but it was pretty good.  This is farm raised Atlantic salmon; it's got more fat but I guess is easier to raise.  We took a filet that was about a pound and a half (.5 kg) and cut it into sections that were about the same thickness.  Then we marinated it for about three hours then smoked it for about five.  Pretty good stuff.

We also had time to do more bird watching.  We bought a new hummingbird feeder; the first one we've ever had that has a perch for the birds.  Amazingly the hummers are happy to sit down while eating.  I never knew!  Anyway now we are sold on perchs for the hummers.  We had a group of six at one point but I was slow; only got three in this photo.  Still, it's a new high for us.

Every now and then I have to get a photo of the mountains around here.  They really make the place special even if I am too lazy to look around for a position without the light pole in the way!

So, you see, you haven't missed much by my lack of blogging..  It's pretty sad when cooking a piece of fish is the big deal in your life.  Hopefully we can get things going here in the near future.  Thanks for stopping by.