Monday, October 16, 2017

Totally fall

One sign that it's fall are the bushels of autumnal food we harvest from our garden: squashes and apples.

Also: bear poop under the apple tree.  I am so very sorry to assault your senses with pictures of bear shit, especially if you read this early in the morning while eating breakfast.

But I thought it was so impressive to see these huge piles of droppings right underneath the tree where the bear gorged on our apples.  It was so thoughtful of him/her to fertilize the tree for us, don't you think?

Talking of apples: we've been making apple cider.  One of our trees (the one with all the bear poop, the one under which we planted our first born's placenta almost 15 years ago), produced 150 pounds of apples this year.

We put Steve's Dad (his parents are visiting) to work, and he helped pick enough apples to press into cider.  We went to our neighbors', who have an antique cider press, and produced eight gallons of apple juice, which we will drink, freeze and make into hard cider.

More signs of autumn: 

  • fires in the wood stove, 
  • walking in the woods with crunchy leaves underfoot, 
  • rotting salmon by the river,
  • dogs in front of the wood stove,
  • homemade buttermilk biscuits

We've been driving across our mountain pass to collect more elderberries.  So far, I've made seven gallons of elderberry syrup.  We're making wine with some of it, and I can't wait to tell you how it turns out.  We have to wait a few months to taste it...

We had a great time with Steve's parents enjoying the fall colors, mountain views and excellent coffee on the other side of the mountains.

Another important fall event is Luke's birthday.  He turned 13, which means he's a teenager, which means we now have two teenagers in the house, which means we are getting old.

It's okay, though.  The teenage dudes are great.  It's our little daughter that worries me, because she is already acting like a teenager at almost eight years old.

Luke is awesome.  He's turning into a thoughtful, funny, considerate, but-still- with-plenty-of-fire young man.  One of the examples to illustrate this was when a girl in his class asked him out.  Luke, not wanting to hurt the girl's feelings while being terrified at the chick's proposition responded: "No offense to you at all, but I'm only in seventh grade, and I'm not ready to date anyone."

How sweet is that?

I will leave you with pictures of fingerless mittens I knitted last year.  I teach how to knit fingerless mittens in one of my online courses.  They are different and more fancy in the pictures below, but it's a step-by-step video tutorial on how to make some amazing Christmas presents!

And I'm gonna throw a picture of our house in after something very rare happened: the living room was cleaned up.

What's going on in your neck of the woods?


  1. I love bear poop in the morning. Can you get a picture of that guy? Maybe animal cam with infra red in the dark! I love hard cider and the whale vertebra on the wall of the cider house. I love elderberry wine. My dad used to make it. Good luck! It will be great! Happy birthday Luke!

    1. Oh my God, you figured out that it's a whale vertebrae! You are a genius!

    2. No, I'm not. I've just seen them before. :-)

  2. I am actually more impressed with the apples then with the poop.
    I'd love to have that much apples, just to make real appelstroop or apple sirup. Just boil down the juice untill it is black and thick. Tastes real good and contains loads of iron amongst other things.

    1. Does it matter what kind of apples one uses? That sounds really good!

    2. Not as far as I know, but the sweeter the better, due to higher sugar levels. The sirup is used on bread and in many local dishes, sauces and the like.
      It is a regional thing from when I grew up.

  3. Haha Luke! I only met him for an hour but I can see him giving that response...wise beyond his years.


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