MARYLAND SHEEP AND WOOL QUILT-THE INKY BROTHERS AND MOXIE-ANOTHER BOUT WITH A LYME CO-INFECTION

17 02 2019

GREETINGS

An almost full moon shines into the woods and barn tonight.  Making long shadows in the woods.  After a warm day we will be having colder temps tonight. 

MARYLAND SHEEP AND WOOL FESTIVAL 

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What a surprise when I opened this years Christmas present from my Cousin Gary.  MY favorite Sheep show has always been the Maryland show.  It’s the biggest and most exciting show.  I was a vendor for many years and miss it so.   The group of people who put on the show are accommodating and so nice.  My Cousin always helped me at this show, he lives about an hour and one half away.  We got T-shirts every year.  This year I got this wonderful quilt with lots of memory T-shirt pictures.  It’s a treasure.

INKY 1 AND INKY 2  (THE TRIPODS) AND MOXIE HAVE ARRIVED ON THE FARM

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I have been asking the universe for a few more cats, it has been sort of empty with only two cats here.   I spotted an ad on Facebook about the Inky brothers.  Two three-legged cats that were mostly feral that needed a home.  They were sitting in a cage for some months  in Rhode Island with two adoptions that fell through.  I talked it over with my Grandson, Ricky and came to the conclusion that I could take them in.  I have a small sunny bedroom with two windows that overlook a bird fly-way.    With help from Gayl, Genevieve,, and Dr. Annette Rauch they are now here safe and happy.

I am hoping that eventually they will come to trust me but am giving them some space to get adjusted.  I will eventually spend time in the room  and i talk to them every time I go into the room so they will know me..  There are dozens of nose prints on the windows so I know they are watching bird tv every day.  PAAWSRI did a wonderful job with them giving them all the time they needed to find a new home  Thank you .

Moxie came to me as a 8-year-old cat who had been with the same person his whole life.  The gentleman needed to move in with a family member who was allergic to cats.    He has had a bit of a tough time adjusting here.  He was quite mad  at me and wouldn’t look at me for days.  He has been in my downstairs bedroom  but because he has weight issues I don’t know when I will put him with Sam and Willie.  He is such a sweet boy and know he will fit in nicely here.

 

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LYME DISEASE

An article caught my eye on Instagram and I develed into it further.  At the least to say I was shocked but not surprised ro find out that our own government may be responsible for the tick outbreak.

Dr. Ken liegner had this to say about Lyme:  In the fullness of time, the mainstream handling of lyme disease will be viewed as one of the most shameful episodes in the history of medicine.. because elements of academic medicine, elements of government and virtually the entire insurance industry have colluded to deny a disease. 

I know this to be true because the clinic I go to many of the doctors have told me so, I have been laughed at, told I never had the disease ect.  He is  reveling  his secret role in developing bug born biological weapons. I am going to buy the book BITTEN The secret history of lyme disease and biological weapons.  300,000 Americans are affected with Lyme disease each year.  This book devels into Willy Burgdorfer the man who discovered the microbe    The author believes that it was an experiment gone wrong.

This disease is in epidemic proportions and has affected so many people.  It has taken their life away.  Only if you are lucky enough to have Doctors that know this disease know how to treat it can you ever hope to get some resemblances of your old life back.

I have been sick again since October.  Through blood work taken at Integrated Medicine I have a very high level of mycoplasma.  Which means that I will be under treatment for the next month .  It is an interesting disease as it has no cell covering so I have to take one medicine which encapsulates it so the two antibiotics that I will be taking will work.  I am also taking an immune booster to try to improve my health.

SNOW

 I have so many wonderful birds coming to the feeding station.  Lots of cardinals, Mourning Doves, all kinds of Woodpeckers, and so many more.    The cats are enjoying wild bird tv.

Many thanks for reading my blog on this clear moonlight night.

Carole

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 





SEASON OF BLACK WALNUTS-CHAROLETTE WINTERS IN-A BOOK I AM READING

13 01 2019

GREETINGS

  It is bitter cold day, the wind whips down the mountain and throught the barn.  Every once in a while in this old farmhouse breezes flow through the house.  Curtains are drawn to keep the warmth in.  Layers are worn and books read.

SEASON OF BLACK WALNUTS

I have been dyeing with black walnut hulls for years.  This year i wondered where I would get some.  Then a sign appearedon the main street of my town, free walnuts and I investigated.  The woman has 2 trees and they were loaded.   I now have a 50  pound feed bag full of dried walnut hulls.

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 I bought a coffee grinder and am grinding them up.  It seems that people  are getting back into natural dyeing but want the convience of having the dye near ready for them.   I will package it  up into 4 and 8 ounce jars and sell it online and at shows.  I have always want to do more with natural dyeing and hope to do some madder this year too.  

I am going to plant some of the seeds and sell some of the trees at farmers market too.

 CHAROLETTE COMES IN

Every year I have a few chickens in and of course Helen is in every winter.  This year Charolette is in.  She is a delightful hen who always heard me coming out to fed them and jumped up to the window.  The past few days she has not been herself.  She has not jumped up onto the perch to sleep and today just stood there ruffled up.   I brought her in and she is thin,  All the food she has been eating has gone to keeping her warm.

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I do think as in all animals there is indiscriminate breeding.  People just don’t have the understanding or the skill to know that some hens are not able to take extreme cold. 

She has had a dose of poultry drench, some yogurt and mealy worms, and chicken food and is now enjoying some warm oatmeal.  Who knows how this will go but it looks like she has a fighting chance of survival.  She is talking up a storm.  Sammy the cat has already inspected her and approved.  He rather likes chicken watching.  A neightbors cat comes almost every day and jumps onto the fence and then to the window box and watches the chickens.  I guess he missed chicken watching when they came in for the winter and has found their new home.

A BOOK I AM READING

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I was looking through my bookcases for something to read today and this book popped out.  It has never been read, probably picked up on a trip to  Ireland in the early 2000’s.    It’s called A COUNTRY LIFE-At Home in the English Countryside by Sir Roy Strong.                

The First chapter describes the house and the things that are he and his wife’s loves.  Its full of artistic clutter, books rambling from one room to another geraniums and other plants doted everywhere spending  their winter inside and last but not least two cats who have the run of the place and no expense or ancient wooden doors were spared for their exit to the gardens.    It sounds a little like my house although my cats aren’t allowed outside.  Missing the sheep and chickens but i imagine they will play a part in the book somewhere.  

I am glad that I put this book away, for now was the perfect time to read it.  He worte the book in 1994 but added a postscript to the book (2002) which I am now reading   He was lamenting about the Hoof and Mouth disease outbreak and how the fields and meadows were empty.  It was a horrific tragedy but the fields and meadows are now filled with Sheep and Cattle again.

I hope you are all snuggled in your warm houses.  All the best.

Carole

SALLY                                         SAM IN HIS HUT ON THE RADIATOR





BLOGGING AGAIN- 2018 GARDEN-GRETEL THE NEW SHEEP

7 01 2019

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GREETINGS

I have missed blogging and my readers so much.  I have been down to an IPad for many months now and finally got another computer which is now up and running thanks to Ricky.  In trying to get it up and running, Staples told us twice to throw a hardly used, 3 year old Dell computer away.  But Ricky was determined and all that was wrong with it was the charging cord.  It does pay to be persistant.

2018 GARDEN

Wow, what a bad year for the garden.  I planted cucumbers, and pumpkins three times and they never grew, too much rain.  I was able to harvest few tomatoes and some string beans.  The one watermelon plant that I planted produced 8 small watermelons..  I did make some pickles but they were soft and i ended up mulching them.  The cukes that I bought would mold overnight.  The garlic and raspberries were great this year luckily.

 

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My hazelnut tree produced two nuts.  Global warming is here to stay.

GRETEL THE SHEEP

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I have been longing for another Border Leicester sheep since Sadie passed away some years ago.  I love them and they were my first flock of sheep  A friend of mine had what she called a naughty sheep.  Gretel kept looking for greener pastures and finally had to be put into stonger fencing away from her friends.  She asked if I wanted her and despite my age and infermities I agreed.  

I was worried that she might not fit in.  My sheep have been a herd for quite sometime and sheep sometimes give a new sheep a run for their money.    Everything went fine and she is so happy here with her friends.  We are a motly crew here with two old dark sheep who are afraid of their own shadows, Carol K who can be a little naughty and Maude who has only one eye.  I am so glad that I got her.   Her Curly locked wool is sold o Camp Wool in Kennebunk, Maine.

The past year has been a stuggle with lyme, real bad gardening weather and tradegies but the New Year is bright with anticipation of travels with family, better gardening , spinning and rug hooking with friends and many adventures.  Hope you all have a wonderful and Happy New Year.

Carole

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MAUDE

 





LYME-THE LAST OF AN ERA-WILLOW-SHEEP SHEARING

4 04 2018

HAPPY SPRING

  The pussy willow tree is in full bloom  We had some snow showers yesterday an rain today.  Looking forward to planting some peas soon.

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I am now on my medication to treat babesia microti.  It seems my whole day now is spent taking medications.  In 3 months I should be free of all this and get back to a normal life.  I am so grateful for Northampton integrated Medicine without them I would have not found out about the disease or be treated.  It seems that this disease is spreading all over Massachusetts.  I will be spraying pyrthium on my clothes to make sure I don’t get bit again.

It’s a bright yellow in color and chalk  would taste so much better but its here and it should make all those little creatures in my red blood cells die so its worth it.

 

THE LAST OF AN ERA

My friend Debbie called to tell me my Cousin Bill Bisbee passed away.  I last saw him a few years ago.  The Bisbee’s were an old Chesterfield Massachusetts family settling there in the 1700’s.  My Dad spent most summers helping  his cousins bring in the hay. His winter holidays from the Holyoke schools were spent sliding down the many hills in Chesterfield. 

I still love going to Chesterfield, my Grandfather and many family members are buried there and I love  picking blueberries every summer at my cousin’s blueberry fields..  The memories of those wonderful days in Chesterfield are cherished by me, I was such a lucky child.   

SHEEP

The sheep have done well over the winter and they were sheared by Aaron last Thursday.  He is an expert shearer and they were done in less than an hour.  Glad that its done before the warm weather hits

 

WILLOW BASKETS

I plan to make some small willow baskets similar to the one I bought in Ireland for shows this year.  I have a small supply of willow I bought some years ago to get me started and cut what I grew some years ago to add to that when its dry.  I think next years willow crop will be better.

I made this soaking tub with a gutter.  It will work out well.

Many thanks for reading my blog an I hope you have a lovely day.

 





I AM BACK-LYME-THINGS GOING ON AT THE FARM

5 03 2018

GREETINGS

I am so glad to be back in the land of the living.  Sometime in January I started feeling like the Lyme had returned.  I got an appointment in February and had loads of blood test and was taken off all medications and awaited the results.  Meanwhile I came down with this awful chest thing that put me in bed for 3 weeks.  While in bed I found out the results of the tests.  I no longer have the lyme but have a  disease from the tick bite.  It is called babesia microti. It’s a parasite that infects the red  blood cells.. 

I am so lucky that a friend, Vickie told me about Northampton Integrated Medicine  or I would be just walking around with the symptoms.    The blood tests done to diagnose this were not known  to a local lab and my regular doctor told me that  it would be  a short-term of antibiotics.   I will be on a 4  month course of a malaria drug and antibiotics with lots of probiotic.  It takes 3 months for all your blood cells to renew themselves  

I have learned so much since my diagnosis  .  This is spread by the white footed mouse.. It can lay dormant for weeks or years, cause flu lie symptoms, fatigue and others.  More and more people are getting this and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health is tracking the people who do get it.  At this time in my small drug store I am the second person taking this unusual medication.

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HOLD NOSE AND SWOLLOW!!!!!!!!!!

If anyone out there has had this please send me a note.  I am sharing this with you because the medical field doesn’t have a lot of knowledge about lyme and are not putting the funding into it.  It’s a dangerous disease which can ruin your life and even kill.

One of the sad things for me about this disease is that I won’t be able to hang clothes out.  I have watched and helped all the women in my family, from my Great=Grandmother to my Mom hang  clothes on the line.  There is nothing better than slipping into a bed with the smell of freshness in the sheets.. I have concluded this is how I had gotten bitten in the fall and found ticks on my inside cats.  I hope that I can figure out a way to be able to continue but at this point I will be drying the clothes inside.

THE REST OF MY LIFE

I am still living in the glow of the trip to Ireland and was so grateful to have been feeling so well during that wonderful trip.

I love  my kitchen, it’s a joy to work in and looking forward to the summertime when I will do lots of canning.

The sheep and chickens have survived the terrible, bone chilling cold of this winter and it looks like another nore-easter is coming on Wednesday.

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Nellie came in during the 20 below days.  She just couldn’t function in that weather and would have frozen to death.   She has enjoyed being inside with lots of snacks and outings and will go out when the weather gets warm with the smaller and gentler hens.  

I am doing a wonderful Maple Sugar Festival in Whitingham Vermont, March 17 and 18.  Come visit me it will be such a fun event.  I can smell the sap boiling now.

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Many thank for reading my blog , hope you have a wonderful day.   Carole.

 

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COUNTY CORK IRELAND 2017

17 01 2018

 

 

VIEW FROM THE COTTAGE

RAINBOWS EVERY DAY

GREETINGS

After months of planing the trip was finally here.  On the 22nd of November we drove to Providence and boarded a Norwegian Dreamliner for the flight to Cork Airport.  All unfamiliar territory for us.  We are used to flying Aer Lingus and going to either Shannon or Dublin.  We couldn’t pass the cheap tickets offered in the spring for 200 plus tax round trip for each of us .  We were not sorry about Norwegian Air,  great flight and service each way and we loved Cork Airport.  Smaller than Shannon but with all the amenities that Shannon had to offer, and much easier to get around.  We ran into a few difficulties finding our way to N71 and made our first stop the Dunne’s Store.    We had packed light so we wouldn’t have to pay for a checked bag so we needed a few items of clothing.  This is something we wouldn’t do again.  We Would pay for one check on bag for the three of us.

For those of you  not familiar with the Dunnes Store they are a Macy type store dotted all over  Ireland.  Some sell groceries also.  The quality of their clothing we feel is superior and most of it is made in the EU and prices are reasonable.

Our sweet stone cottage was located near the town of Schull (pronounced Skull) which is a town that Cindy and I had stayed in before.    It’s a quaint town located on Bantry Bay.  The house has mountain views and the sea in a distance.  The kitchen was perfect with everything one could want with views of pasture land.  The bedrooms were amazing the internet was good . We had a small turf burning stove which we used every night.  This was one of the best cottages we ever rented in Ireland.I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of recycling done at the cottage.  

There are Farmers Markets  everywhere and we went to the one in Bantry on Friday.  In the market were soaps and herbs, fresh caught fish, meat and lots of veggies.  Spring flowers were potted up coats and jumpers and so much more.  I did find Martin O’Flynn the willow basket man.  I have many of his beautiful baskets.  It was good to have a chat with him.  

We traveled to the Beara Peninsula which is another  place we have been many times.  We stopped in at the Tibetan Buddhist Retreat and chatted with a gentleman from Scotland who was volunteering a months time there.  They are  building a Temple which will be beautiful.  The Retreat sits on a point with the Atlantic in front, people come from all over the world.

 

  After  a cuppa tea and hot chocolate for Chris and Cindy we headed back to find Dunboy Castle one of my favorite places .  For years it was a derelict castle which cattle were in and out of .   Sitting near one of the giant firepLaces you could close your eyes and see what it must have been like when it was built.  Five or so years ago someone bought it with thoughts of making it into a higher end resort.  Cindy and I were excited at the prospect of someday maybe staying there for a night.   They redid the castle, made more paces to stay in back and a pool and gym and ran out of money and now it sits empty again with fencing all around it. 

So sad.  Wish someone could open it again.

Off to the only cable car in Ireland at the end of the Beara connecting the mainland to Dursey Island.  If you want peace and quiet Dursey is the place to go.   There are two villages on the Island.  The island is about 3 miles long and Cindy and I did walk it on one trip.  Unfortunately the cable car had gone and it was getting late in the day. 

You never now who will ride in the cable car with you.

I did find two cottages that were available to rent and maybe someday we can spend a night or two there

I will continue on our wonderful trip to Ireland, Cindy, Chris and I had the time of our lives on this trip and we are looking forward to more trips in the future.  Many thanks for reading my blog on this winter day.  Carole

NANCY THE HORSE ME CHRIS AND CINDY

 

 





NOVEMBER-THE KITCHEN-BOOKS I AM READING-CHICKENS

7 01 2018

GREETINGS

I am back from Ireland and have a working kitchen now.  My next blog I will share the trip to Ireland with you.  Hope to catch up in this blog.  December into January has been super cold  The temps last night went down to over 20 below zero and with wind chill it was way below that.   This morning the temps are eking up but at 11 am its still not above 10 below.  For the first time in 19 years my kitchen is warm and no broken pipes!!!!!!! (knock on wood)

NOVEMBER

I hardly remember November it went by in a whirlwind.  Getting ready for the crafts of Colrain and the trip to Ireland and 2 shows the weekend before I left.   But all these things were getting me ready for the best trip.  Peaceful, fun and adventurous 

THE KITCHEN

The front part of the kitchen is done and it looks great.  It is wonderful to have a kitchen that works and has places for everything.  I wonder how I worked in the old one for so many years.  I have all new appliances and a huge sink or zink as my Mom Mom Morrison use to call them.  Everyone helped and cheered me on when I was washing dishes in the bath tub.  Even though it was a difficult few months it certainly showed me how important family and friends are in one’s life.  I am so grateful.

The back part of the kitchen where the wood stove was will have to wait till warmer weather as the floor has to  come up and a new base for the wood stove has to be built  I sure  do miss the wood stove on these cold days  but it needs to be done  The floor has sunk down about 5 inches.  I am planning on replacing my Vermont casting stove with a smaller more efficient Jotul  wood stove.  I  Don’t need that big of a stove anymore with the new insulated walls.

 

BOOKS I AM READING

I bought some books in Ireland and my favorite magazine    The Lighthouse Keeper a memoir by Gerald Butler  I had read a review on in a newspaper and decided it would be a book I would search for  Every book store was out I was beginning to think that I wouldn’t find it but on a trip to Baltimore in the tiniest of stores there it was   I started reading it that night  It is about the life of one of the last lightkeepers in Ireland.  His great-grandfather was a light keeper and so was both of his parents  Most of his lightkeeping days were on the west coast of Ireland where we were staying    Many exciting tales of his rescues and of his time at Fastnet Lighthouse with waves coming over the top of the light house  A great read

The sea and lighthouses always have fascinated me.  I always though I would live near them.

COUNTRY LIVING MAGAZINE UK

 

As many of my followers know I have been getting this magazine for years  I finally found it at the end of my trip thanks to Cindy and Chris  With stories about topiary, making casks, and so much more.  I find it a back to the rural life plus views of the city magazine   If you have never read this magazine its worth buying  or borrowing a copy .  

 BACKYARD CHICKENS by Dave Ingham

I found this wonderful book at Avoca Weavers on Molls Gap in Ireland.  I do have lots of books on Chickens but love to add to my collection    Every person raises chickens  differently and new ideas and how to handle illnesses are something I always look for in a new book  This has them and  it is a delightful read too

MARGARET

Margaret is in for the winter she is now in the cage I bough for Helen   She is in back part of the kitchen  She has had the sneezing and coughing thing before I left and was in the house  briefly and seemed to be better  But a few days after I got home she was sneezing again   She still has some problems but  is back to her old self talking and cooing  I let her out everyday as it is a smaller cage  She loves the private sleeping area  She will be back with the flock in the spring 

MYRTLE

MYRTLE came in today  I found her standing still just trying to keep warm today not eating or drinking . Like Humans some hens just can’t take the cold and need some  help.  This is exceptional weather we are having and I think she would have been fine with normal winter weather.  She will return out in the spring.

The personalities of these two birds is like night and day.  Margaret is demanding and wants wants wants.  Myrtle is happy with anything  you do for and asks for little.  

JUNIPERS WITH BLUE BERRIES

I have wanted to get 3 of these trees for some time  Not many places carry them but I plan to go to a tree nursery in Hadley, Mass this spring and see if they have them  to further my dream of having all my live Christmas decorations right in my own yard  As a child I remember them in cow and horse pastures 

I found some this Christmas season in a place where I would have never thought to look, Home Depot an it was the last bunch there  I have scattered them around the house and catch their scent when I walk past .

Juniper Oil has been used in many things for years  I love it for a bath  It is said to help arthritis .

Many thanks for reading my blog on this cold winter day.  Carole