Archive for August 21, 2011

Cleaning Out the Feed Bags

The feed bags usually get burned or recycled but, with the drought in the spring and early summer, we couldn’t burn anything. I just kinda tossed the feed bags to the side to deal with when I could.

Last weekend, I decided to deal with those pesky feed bags. I started sorting them (paper or plastic) so that I could decide whether they could be mulched or used as weed barriers in the garden (paper), used for various things around the place (the woven plastic bags), or burned. I was sorting my butt off when I lifted up a feed bag near the bottom of the stack and startled a very large coiled snake underneath it. I put that feed bag right back down on that snake, leaving just enough of an opening to where I could see a big ol’ loop o’ snake so I’d know if he was sneakin’ up on me. My enthusiasm for cleaning up the feed bags was a lot lower than it had been previously. It wasn’t a dangerous snake, just a very large rat snake who had probably been in an ideal position to snatch him up a nice, juicy fat rat scavenging through the ol’ feed bags at night.

I turned around to look at the sky to decide how much time I had left before the rain began. Hmmmmmm. Not much. I turned back around, glanced at visible loop of snake, and started to move the metal garbage cans full of feed back into place and almost stepped on snake’s head. We both had an “eeeeeeek” moment when that happened. I’d forgotten just how big that ol’ snake was, and that even though I could see loop of snake protruding out from under the feed bag, there was enough spare snake for that head and another 4 feet of body to be laying across my walking space. Time to go in for a drink.

When I went back out, there was no loop of snake to be seen. Dang. I HATE when that happens. I looked at the piles of bags and wondered under which one the snake was lurking. I suppose I could have gotten a shovel or pitchfork to move those bags so I wouldn’t have to chance grabbing snake who would be less than enthusiastic about THAT, but then I might have harmed it. While I was standing there looking at the piles of bags trying to psychically divine under which one the snake was lurking, it started raining. All over the bags. *sigh*

I finished sorting and bagging them this weekend. All except the ones that the skink was hiding under. Didn’t want the ducks to get him.

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SwampMan’s Storm Sense Will Be Tested

I was picking up some downed limbs from the thunderstorm last week today when SwampMan asked what I was doing.

“I figured I’d pile up these limbs and, if I get a chance, burn some of ‘em before Irene comes through.” I hated to do it, though. I’d planned to use ‘em for some artsy craftsy type stuff like pen making or wood carving when I resign but, if this is an active hurricane season, I should have all SORTS of raw material to work with. Hopefully some of that raw material won’t have squished the house.

“Oh, well, I’m not a bit worried about Irene. My storm sense tells me that it ain’t gonna amount to nothin’!” announced SwampMan confidently.

“Are you sure that ain’t your lazy sense, since you did NOT want to be cutting plywood this weekend?”

“No, I have a sense about these things.”

I’d be more comforted if SwampMan wasn’t surprised every time it rained. “What the HELL is THIS?” he’ll exclaim when torrential rain is falling outta the sky. “The weather forecast never said it was gonna rain!”

“When did you last even watch a weather forecast?”

“Sometime this week. I think.”

“Unh hunh. And the black clouds in the sky didn’t give you a clue?”

Guess we’ll see if SwampMan’s unfailing weather sense is going to be right by the end of the week.

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Potato Salad

Mom made potato salad (among other things) for lunch today. You would think that, being mother and daughter, we would make things alike. That would be wrong.

“Is that sugar I taste in your potato salad?” I asked. Mom admitted that, yes, she DID add a touch of sugar to her potato salad. She tosses her boiled eggs into the food processor and turns them into teeny little egg pieces that are mixed with Miracle Whip. Other ingredients are chopped green pepper, green onions, salt, and celery seeds.

My potato salad is completely different. It contains mayonnaise (Hellmann’s if I’ve got it), NOT Miracle Whip. No bell pepper. No celery seeds. No sugar. My eggs are sliced. It has a lil’ touch of spicy brown mustard. Lots of apple cider vinegar. Lots of onions. Some chopped celery if I have it on hand. Crispy fried chopped bacon and a lot of it.

I wonder if there are actual people out there that follow potato salad recipes and make it the same way twice?

Mom said that her neighbor brings her food from church gatherings that Mom is no longer able to attend. The lady brought over some potato salad and raved about how good it was. Mom was NOT impressed. “It had NO flavor, and the potatoes were mooshy.”

“Ewwwwwww”, I sympathized. “How’d that happen?”

“I think they peeled the potatoes before boiling them!” Mom said.

“Hunh. I didn’t know anybody did that.” We sat silently for a moment wondering about people that liked mooshy potato salad. Ewwwwww.

“What I can’t figure out”, Mom continued, puzzled, “is why my friend thought it was so good! Maybe something is wrong with my tastebuds.”

“Momma!” I said sharply. “Isn’t your friend a Yankee?”

“Well, yes!” said Mom. “But what does that have to do with it?”

“She wouldn’t know what food was supposed to taste like!”

That cheered Mom up considerably. Her friend didn’t have impaired taste buds, she just didn’t know any better.

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