Saturday, February 23, 2013

beginning of week 8

bernie's last week in training (THANK GOODNESS)
calpurrnia is better, still weak, still a bit wobbly..... still not totally on solid foods yet
enjoying being hand fed
but alive! and alert

this past week was another week to be endured
poor bernie is exhausted, he's rarely got down time or time to call home (his trainer is a dickwad)
he texts me when ever he can find time-this is the start of his last training week thank goodness

he should be home next week sometime- about when we run out of wood

meanwhile with calpurrnia so sick, and some other nightmare things that happened this week, i too am exhausted
i got very little sleep

now today we are to get a storm again, from what i see outside it looks like mainly rain off the branches, but it's early yet
i am hoping to make a beginning of a sour dough starter today, with the wild yeasts that are on wheat hulls, so i'll be grinding flour- i may also make bread, i am not sure yet if i will or won't

in painting news, i'm not
i am planning out the next one but have had problems for the moment painting
i am still working but right now it's research and layouts
however i have done a few fast studies of snowflakes for finishing up this painting
right now i would rather it done right
of course right and fast is better.... however i have the luxury at the moment of resting out my arm

yesterday i got a bunch of wood in, in anticipation of this coming storm.
i got the duck pens freshened with a layer of hay
washed all the water pails (i can't wait to wash the ponds when there is no ice on them)
refilled the chickens feeder and added oyster shell to all the feed bowls again (the ducks laid a shell less egg)
i did dishes and tried to take care of some paperwork
as well as other odds and ends
in between hand feeding calpurrnia-
i really need to clean the bathroom and the bedroom though
and i probably should think about getting the ladder out so i can do laundry (the washer is very hard for me to reach into so i gotta use the ladder and kitchen tongs to get stuff out)

if it's warm enough today, i am thinking of letting the stove go and cleaning that again
we have some very light fast burning wood (not pine) that is great for cleaning the chimney etc....BUT
it makes a ton of ash in there so while i use it so that i get a hot fire fast in the middle night stokings
i know i have to deal with a big coal/ash bed the next day

i am so going to get those blocks for the woodstove as soon as i can get to tractor supply

now i am needing to write a bio for me, to submit to an agent
this isn't easy for me at all
ask me to write an article about medieval clothing........not too bad a gig
about growing veggies from seed ....'ditto'
but a bio....oye

ok so that's my week
i'm about to have more coffee and get going for the day

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

calpurrnia is very very sick

she's been poisoned.
we think it was that she ate a plant as i found some chewed leaves in her vomit
but now i am wondering

i rushed her to the vet this morning, he gave her activated charcoal......something else and a shot
she was a lot better
she stopped foaming and drooling
her and i drove home through the snow and sleet
we got home .......decided to go back in the crate
ok so i put her hot rice socks in with her
thaddeaus started to bug her so i shut the door
she called me a bit later to let her out and she vomited up the charcoal
sooooooooooo we called the vet again
anyway....... it's touch and go
i'm up with her and staying up all night
changing out her hot rice socks
i am totally exhausted
i've not slept much.......and i'm still sick.... i also apparently didn't bring in enough wood for today even though i thought i did
4 wood carts full didn't get me even two days

i swear i am so tired my skin is crawling
however there isn't anything i can do about it

if calpurrnia dies she will not be alone

meanwhile the stress on bernie is overwhelming too ....his trainer is riding him like a dog
between the two of us...... please

i had to tell him that calpurrnia may not make it
i am hoping however that she does

now i gotta go and snooze a bit in the chair next to her

Sunday, February 17, 2013

from my point of view

the trucking industry sucks big time
now i am sure there are folks that love it.
but from what i am seeing.......

it is exploitative of the drivers- disrespectful of their lives and family
(yesterday werner trucking called bernie, refused to give me their name nor leave a message, and hung UP on me, i goggled the phone number and now have blocked all werner numbers i could find from calling here)
meanwhile i haven't heard from bernie in a few days
which means that the trainer is being abusive again.... like he was in the beginning (until bernie told him that maybe bernie wasn't cut out for this and was going to quit- then the guy was texting him all the time while bernie was on home time- he also tried to get bernie NOT to take his home time- telling him 'you may not get me back as a trainer' ------- i woulda say YEAH)

i know that the money is not great, and that with the hours etc.....these guys make like 2.00 an hour when you figure it all out

the food over the road sucks......seriously unhealthy for these drivers
the sitting down all the time is VERY unhealthy....but they have no choice, as they need to make miles
and the isolation of the job i think is very damaging to them as well

i don't think he thought this one out as thouroughly as he should have- and i am thinking he's more then realized that now

i know i've pretty much had it....
meanwhile i got a cold or something
swollen glands, sore throat and coughed up a bit of blood (which i think is from the sore throat)
achy body....... but only a tiny mild temp
enough to make me totally miserable but still able to struggle through chores

thank goodness this nightmare should be over soon

Friday, February 15, 2013

the home stretch?

ok bernie was home for four days, then had to leave to go back out on the road, finishing up this portion of his training.
march 1 is the end of the 8 weeks, at that point he'll be dropped off in nebraska for another 2 days orientation, before he solos back to pa.....
once here, he again goes into orientation with his dedicated run..... followed by training at his dedicated run

so i am really hoping he gets home the first week of march
his time home here was spent mostly doing chores, eating and sleeping
we spent the whole four days doing stuff to get him ready again to go back out on the road
he was however home for our anniversary on the 11th

he said he really doesn't like over the road (which is good cause he is not supposed to BE over the road)
he was painfully homesick
all of us here at home missed him so bad that he literally waded through ducks and chickens and cats....... (and me)

i also tried hard to make sure he had 'home alone' time, as he's been cooped up in a truck for all this time......24/7 with a stranger
bernie needs a lot of down time, and when he's home, he will work on a model or read, usually in the same room i am working in but he's in his space......i don't usually intrude on it
there are also a lot of things that he does without me around
errands a lot of the time
we balanced together time with him alone, i think it was difficult for both of us as neither one of us wanted the other out of their sight for long
but he really needed some alone time
he moved all our wood to the deck now...... and when i looked i realized that we are going to need at least another 2 cords to finish the winter out..... he thinks he'll be home for when i need to get the wood delivered
i hope so cause if not i am going to have them deliver it ON THE FRONT DOOR

i fed him good of course.....
i repacked his bags with clean clothes, more 'hugs from home' and tiny little surprises
along with a vday card and tiny heart of chocolates
i also made sure he had food with him going out there again, oatmeal, salads, protein bars, shelf stable microwaveable meals and DARK chocolate for stress reduction

i am going on record as stating i do NOT approve of the shelf stable meals at ALL...... nor the protein bars but for now they are necessary evils

while he was home i taught him to make 100% whole wheat bread from freshly ground hard red wheat..
we used a no knead recipe
he was totally amazed and loved the bread
i told him when he comes home, we'll make him sourdough rye bread from fresh ground rye flour
actually he's got a LOT of stuff to look forward to when he finally gets home and life goes back to the new normal

i know he's looking forward to an end of training......
it's amazing to me that he agreed to such an arduous situation.....but not that he is finishing it
when it comes to his job, he's got tenacity
i miss him terribly but i am very proud of him
i think i am even prouder of him realizing that over the road is not for him
and realizing how much he really is a home body and family man

i don't think he quite realized that before as clearly as now....
so that's good

in painting news, i am still waiting to finish the ice princess and then start the goddess of the reindeer
i need to do another 'cold' painting after that....but then i plan on starting teacups with flowers
and hopefully botanical paintings
i wish i could go for a course .....there is a great one out at the ny botanical gardens and another great one down near philly....both of which are NOT within commuting distances
so i am going to be on my own with that
i think i can teach myself, as i taught myself so much other stuff

one of my teachers in art school said ' once you are out of art school, your REAL education begins'

and i have discovered that she was right (my etching teacher, i think her name was grunelle)
i am still amazed i am learning watercolor on my own, every painting is another experiment.... and moves me a bit forward

my thoughts as an artist have changed too....... as well as my attitude
so that is all good no?

anyway, i have to get the ducks and chickens out now, then bring the wood in
i think after that i am going to try and paint

my hands have been a bit shakey and a bit.......messed up (thyroid issues i suspect)
my skins all screwed up too

but i am going to try and paint

i hope everyone is surviving the winter and has had a wonderful vday.......

take good care

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

cleaning the woodstove at 3am

well, it's not my idea of fun but it'd died down enough to get in there so...
3am,......the ash bucket.....yup a date

now i am just waiting for the chimney stack temps to stablize...and i am going to go up again
yesterday i hauled in four full wood carts-
my knees won't bend today
bernie texted me, he's in ohio or on his way to ohio...
he's trying to get home

friday is 5 weeks for him out on the road..... and almost 6 since i've seen him.
our 36 anniversary is monday
he's dreadfully home sick

i am managing better then i expected...although i am really banged up by falling wood.
and i am sick of climbing the ladder with the kitchen tongs to reach into the washing machine....
meanwhile in chicken and duck news.......we have eggs

oh boy do we have EGGS
i really do need to bake or freeze a lot of them
i've got three of the four hens laying a few times a week now
so i have a lot of eggs
i told bernie when he gets home he's going to have a 27 egg omlet

now would be the time to try egg tempera if i only HAD the time


i did pretty good yesterday in spite of now being sore, stiff, tired and aching
i got litter boxes done
all that wood done (took all damn day)
i just now cleaned the wood stove
ducks and chickens fed and watered (they didn't go out yesterday- they stayed in the inside pens)
budgies fed and watered
cats fed and watered
(ok so animal chores are daily)

dishes done

but i didn't shovel
i should have but just could not spare the energy
the gods of snow and wind and melt need to be with me and remove the snow that they deposited
i am just too tired to

ok off to bed now.....the stove is cooking pretty good
and i am hoping for at least 4 more hours sleep maybe