Random Thoughts

Today’s Farm report comes from Ben.

It’s December. Not too much farm stuff this week, and I have some random thoughts.

I saw SEVEN ducks fly over to their breakfast! Everybody but the poufy and the two big black ones. Rosie and Guildy, the regular mallards, and the two that I always assumed were too fat to fly. (Is it OK to call a duck fat?) But they all flew from the pond to the corn. Yay ducks!

It was down in the single digits the other night and I had to turn on the wellhouse heater again. I sure don’t remember having to do that in November or early December before.

I got the rear blade mounted on the tractor and got to use it after the 3” of snow we got on Tuesday. As usual with the first snow and the not solidly frozen ground, I ripped up some sod. Oops. Well, the chickens like the dirt. Gonna be rough mowing next summer, but that’s next summers problem.

We did get the driveway markers in and snow fence up last Saturday. That Saturday after Thanksgiving has traditionally been a nice weather day and we’ve done snow fence for several years on that day. It was a little windy, but it wasn’t too cold, and as long as we worked with the wind, the fence stayed up by itself and it went OK. It helps that the posts are still there one year to the next. Last year my shoulder had just started to hurt, leading to the surgery in February, so I wasn’t much help with the snowfence last year. We put up 400’ in about 1.5 hours this year. Next year I’m hoping to install some permanent wood posts for the ends of the sections. It’s on my list of next summer’s jobs.

Every night I give the dogs some ‘Milkbone’ dog treats. Allie has to get one first. Humphrey will not take a treat first; he’ll only take one after Allie gets hers. I don’t think it’s altruism, I’m not sure if he’s that suspicious? He won’t take pills or eat anything without sniffing it first. And Bailey. She’ll leave the treats sit all night. And when I open the garage door the next morning, she grabs a treat and heads off to bury it in the snow. She’s so weird. They’re all so weird.  

I’ve started baking Amish Friendship bread again. Just did my second batch of 6. I should be able to get one more batch in before the knee, then I’ll stall it for a bit. I’ve got a list of things that needed to be done before my knee replacement. (8 days and counting! I’m excited and scared and cautiously optimistic!) There were some big things like getting fieldwork done, and machinery put away, getting the snow fence up, and putting the rear blade

on the tractor were the last two items. But then I started adding minor things, just so I could enjoy crossing them off. I’ve added things like ‘Put up Christmas tree’ and ‘Show Kelly the well house heater’ and ‘move the piano’. We’re making progress on the list!

Music this week: I’ve been listening to the Modern Big Band channel. And on the car radio I heard Nina Simmone singing ‘Sinnerman’.

CAN THE FOODS ON YOUR PLATE TOUCH EACH OTHER? DO YOU EAT ONE THING AT A TIME OR EAT A BITE OF EVERTHING?

108 thoughts on “Random Thoughts”

  1. Eat a bite of everything most of the time but sometimes eat one at a time…recently had a goat burger with herb and red hot  seasonings so good I finished it then my salad.  Typical dinner of meat or fish and salad.  First discovered Nina Simone in 1967 when I was teaching second grade in Leadville CO and a store was selling record albums for $1. Fell in love with the one by Nina (and an unknown to me at the time guy named Gordon something “foot”). Still love both of their music.  Cynthia “Life is a shifting carpet…learn to dance.”

    Liked by 4 people

        1. For a while, WP was posting my comments directly and I was allowed to like things. Now I have to sign in again for each comment and I can’t like anything. My device hasn’t changed, so this is on WP.

          Like

        2. That’s been the case for me for months now. It’s really annoying. On the bright side, it has probably shielded the baboons from a few smartass comments I might have otherwise made.

          Liked by 4 people

        1. Well, there other things that one looks for, but I can’t say, as those are trade secrets and would compromise test integrity. I can say that content of the percepts is probably the least important variable in test interpretation

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Heck yeah. I like my foods to get to know one another before I devour them. And I don’t eat one food at a time. I take a little of both. But I have noticed that I almost always taste my vegetables before tasting my protein. Not sure if that’s weird or not, just is.

    Chris in Owatonna
    (Glad the snow stopped early last night, so the road to Faribault will be clear for my drive to the Faribault Holiday Spirits Bazaar this morning. One thing about these selling events–you rarely get a refund for a cancellation or no–show. I guess it’s “Author Beware.”)

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I like to eat foods unmixed. What really gets to me is sticky stuff on my hands. Today is a baking day. I am making Stollen. I have to cut the glaceed cherries in half , which I do with a scissors. The stickiness just irritates me. I get the same yucky sensation when I make gnocchi and the dough sticks to my fingers.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I usually switch foods after having a few bites of something so that I really get the taste of it. But sometimes I eat so fast I hardly pay attention… what’s that about?

    Ben’s sentence containing frozen ground made me think of this, which I could have also posted yesterday:

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Rise and Shine, Baboons,

    Without warning WP recognizes me and lets me post and like—until it changes its mind about me.

    I love foods that blend flavors, such as soups and stews, gravy, and Italian sauces. Generally, my foods touch each other and get mixed up. At Thanksgiving gravy covers the meat, the potatoes, and the stuffing/dressing for the best of flavors.

    I also love pungent flavors, such as bread and butter pickles. When I have a sandwich, bland flavor, I love B and B pickles to spice up the meal, so I eat a little of this, a little of that.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Much to my daughter’s chagrin, I let my foods touch (she took an entire extra plate this year at Thanksgiving to keep her mashed potatoes from touching anything else). And sometimes mix them together. I am a bit or two of this and then the next thing – no particular order. Totally a random chaotic with how I eat. A bit like life, really – a bit of this, a bite of that, let stuff touch and overlap. So far it hasn’t been a problem. And I don’t spin in my chair while I eat – only when I’m bored in meetings and my camera is off…

    Liked by 3 people

  7. I’m curios, seriously. How do you avoid your foods touching when you eat, say, a hamburger or hotdog? Do you not put a lettuce leaf on top of the mayo on the bun, and then add the burger, a slice of tomato, avocado, and/or raw onion on top? Or does the no-touch rule apply only to certain foods or meals?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. OT – This for the poetry lovers on the blog, but also for those who don’t think they are. I’m looking at you, Ben.
    “Whenever I pick up a new book of poems, I flip through the pages looking for small ones. Just as I might have trust in an abstract painter more if I knew he or she could draw a credible chicken, I have faith in poets who can go short.”—Billy Collins

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Yeah, short poems sounds like a good place for me. 🙂
      I do have Billy Collins in my FB page, but I don’t often actually watch his poems….

      Like

  9. Okay – riddle me this, Baboons: I have limited space in my kitchen for storage. I have two (two!) drawers: one for the assortment of ladles, spatulas, measuring cups, and other cooking utensils (wooden spoons are in a jar on the counter). The other drawer is for flatware, serving spoons and forks, and a couple of the knives that don’t fit in knife block. So why, if utensils go in one drawer and flatware in the other, do I put one set of measuring spoons in the flatware drawer and the other two in with the utensils? I could argue that it’s that the one set is metal… but I’m not sure that makes a difference as it’s not a matter of finding them: the others are just as easy to find in the other drawer. And it feels *wrong* to put the metal ones in with the others. Is this the same part of my brain that lets my green beans mush in with my stuffing and potatoes? Or does this move into “spinning in the chair while eating” territory?…

    Liked by 1 person

      1. The third are cheap dollar store ones leftover from a cooking project where we needed six sets. (Daughter and I filmed a Great British Bake-Off knock off with Easy Bake ovens for Husband years ago with some of her friends for a birthday present. Cooking for an Easy Bake means lots of teaspoons and tablespoons…) I could get rid of them as they are cheap – but hang on to them partly out of sheer sentimentality and partly out of the knowledge that someday I will need a teaspoon or tablespoon measure for some non-food thing and having a semi-disposable set will be handy…

        Liked by 2 people

    1. (It’s embarrassing that I even have an opinion about this…)
      Depends on where you use them. I have one set in a drawer at the counter I often use to assemble baking projects, and another standing in a small pottery jar next to the stove – these are loose, and not bound together.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. I have three sets of measuring spoons. One is a copper set that hangs on its own rack above the sink. The other two are twins. One set I bought because they were a match for my mother’s set, the set I used when I was a teenage baker. The other is the original set that came to me when my mother died. None of the live in drawers – they all hang on the wall

      Liked by 3 people

        1. I wanted to reply to this answer with a video of Dick Martin from the TV show Laugh-In. “I didn’t know that,” he’d say gleefully, eyes wide open in amazement, and with that shit-eating grin on his face. Unfortunately I couldn’t find one.

          Liked by 4 people

      1. Husband is also making a casserole roasted pork loin ala Julia. Tomorrow I make 4 kinds of Christmas cookies. You could say I am a compulsive Christmas baker.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Who eats all that? I ask because at the moment we have leftovers from four successive dinners in the refrigerator and even without any additional baking to consume, it’s excessive.
          I like to have leftovers and cook amply but sometimes, as now, the residue piles up. I could freeze portions of the leftovers and I do that with soups and stews but they pile up as well and we run out of freezer space and items sometimes get forgotten in there.
          Reading this, I recognize it’s the epitome of a first-world problem.

          Liked by 2 people

        2. We had no Thanksgiving leftovers as we were at our son’s, and we will eat the pork roast all week as leftovers. We don’t usually cook new dishes during the week, and do most of our cooking on the weekend . The cookies and Stollen are to give to friends and family.

          Liked by 1 person

        3. I can, and do repurpose leftovers if I start with a large piece of protein, like a chicken. But I also make a conscious effort to vary our menu so that we are not, for example, having something over rice or noodles on multiple consecutive days.

          I cook something new (or modified) almost every night, starting at 4:30 to be ready by 6:00. I am not a speedy cook. Recipes that claim 20 minutes prep time usually take me three times that long. I don’t however, consider it a chore or something to race through. I look forward to it.

          Liked by 1 person

        4. I tend to cook that way as well, Bill.

          While I used to be a pretty speedy and efficient cook, aches and pains in various body parts have slowed me down. At the moment, with a left knee that makes it painful to move around, I spend much more time planning than I used to, to minimize time on my feet. For instance, I divide the prep work into what can be done ahead of time, and what needs to be reasonably close to the time of use. Also, trimming vegetables, such as Brussels sprouts, is something I can do while sitting in my recliner. During winter, especially, a big pot of soup can be embellished and supplemented in various ways to ensure a nutritious and satisfying meal for several days.

          Liked by 2 people

  10. Like Ben, I tend to keep the hot foodstuffs away from the cold foodstuffs, unless they are intended to be combined, as in a BLT. Some things, like pickled beets, should be segregated, lest they overpower.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Welcome to the trail, Harshraj. This is how weird WordPress is, it allowed to not only look at your blog, but to “like” it as well. I clicked the follow button, so I’m assuming I’ll be notified when you post again. We shall see. At any rate, good luck with your blog. I’ll go back and peruse it a bit more thoroughly later.

      Liked by 2 people

  11. Entirely OT: I was heating some water for pasta last night, standing there waiting for it to boil and it occurred to me to wonder why water bubbles when it boils and what the bubbles are filled with and how they form underwater. You may know the answers to that but it was a question I’d never thought to ask. So I researched it a bit.
    It turns out that the bubbles are not, as I supposed, filled with air or with hydrogen or oxygen from the breakdown of molecules but rather the bubbles are filled with water vapor—steam—as the molecules are unlinked from each other and change states from liquid to gas. Makes perfect sense once it’s explained.

    Liked by 5 people

  12. Ben, I love your weekend farm reports with photos of your spread, machinery, various critters including dogs, and Kelly. I feel as if I’ve known you for a long time though we’ve never met. I have come to appreciate your even-tempered assessment of the various “challenges” that crop along the way, and how you manage to put them all in a perspective that allows you to cheerfully soldier on. I suppose part of that is innate temperament, but I’m sure it’s also learned from lessons along the way. At any rate, thank you for being such a stalwart contributor to the trail.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Awww, Thanks for saying that. I hope it’s fun, and educational, and interesting. I know it’s not always for everyone.
      Please feel free to ask questions too.

      Something I’ve been thinking about lately: I watch some dairy and beef farmers on YouTube, and they’re always so calm and quiet with their cattle. And I’m ashamed to say I wasn’t always so calm with the milk cows. I know you’re ‘supposed’ to be. And I remember once having a fight with dad because for a while he milked the cows on one side and I milked the cows on the other side and he yelled at one of ‘my’ cows.
      He always had a temper and I certainly inherited that from him. And sometimes it came out with the cattle. A lot more than it should have. So I watch these YouTube farmers and even when a cow is out or something, they just talk to them and get them back in. I just got mad at the cow for getting out. And I know it’s not ‘just for the camera’ because when these guys walk through the herd, the cattle don’t even get up. It’s like me walking through the chickens now days. They’re right around my feet because they know it’s OK. You don’t fake that with the animals.

      I’ve aged and matured and all around I don’t get as mad as I used too. And not about the same things of course. That probably happens to all of us. Age and perspective.

      So I’m trying PJ. Thank you.

      Liked by 3 people

  13. we will get weekend knee reports soon

    i place my stuff on the plate so i can mix differently

    sweet potato’s and wild rice
    asparagus and mushrooms
    falafels and froxen fruit salad etc…

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Hey Ben, I’ve been having a little trouble with the blog but I finally did get your farm report. I just want to say that I think your knee surgery is going to go very well. Make sure to rent an ice machine. It’s much easier than swapping out ice packs all the time. You can vegetate with your legs up and the ice machine has a cuff that wraps around your leg. It’s about $350 to rent it and I don’t think insurance will cover it but it’s really worth it. Make sure to follow all the instructions they give you TO THE LETTER. Don’t allow yourself to get any kind of infection or virus. It could easily lead to a very severe infection in your leg. Do walk around as tolerated and go to physical therapy when you’re scheduled. My friend just went through this. She’s a very careful person. She followed every instruction to the letter and she’s 100% now. It was only 5-6 weeks before she was back to 100%. Even her scar from her incision is vanishing. Don’t put any creams or lotions on the scar until they tell you it’s ok. It’s super important to avoid any kind of contamination or infection.

    Liked by 1 person

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