One Crow is ill news Two Crows mirth Three Crows a wedding Four Crows a birth Five Crows for riches Six Crows a thief Seven Crows a journey Eight Crows for grief Nine Crows a secret Ten Crows for sorrow Eleven Crows for true love Twelve's a new day tomorrow

Monday, November 28, 2005

New wool

Lookie what I got!

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The turquoise and red is a mohair-wool-nylon blend to make a scarf to go with my Pendleton jacket so that Ken's daughter will no longer laugh at me for wearing this scarf with it. The mohair actually matches very well - better than it looks between the two photos.

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The other is a nice hand painted 100% merino for socks. Yes I am crazy but it was the annual Putney Craft Tour and I could not resists. The yarns are from Oak Grove Studio and are quite lovely. She had a ton of yarn - but was off to New Mexico for the winter - so it was buy now - or next year.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Holla Back, Women!

Holla Back NYC is my new favorite site.

Holla Back NYC gives New Yorkers the right to Holla Back at street harassers. Whether you're commuting, lunching, partying, dancing, walking, chilling, drinking, or sunning, you have the right to feel safe, confident, and sexy, without being the object of some dickwad's fantasy. So stop walkin' on and Holla Back!

I think we need one of these for every section of the world. Imagine every sick harrassing bastard having his picture posted on the web. Imagine some woman checking out the site and seeing what her husband, brother, boyfriend, son is up to. Ha! That would serve the bastards!

Saturday, November 26, 2005

One hat down, two to go

Look – I finished a hat! It’s a skull cap in a couple of ways. I know it looks a bit small on me – but it is for a very skinny 12 year old and I think it will fit perfectly.

A word to the wise on using knit 2 purl 2 rib all the way around. – Start on the right side with knit 3 so that the seaming looks better. I ended up at the seam with what looks like purl 2, knit 1, purl 2.

I now am making the exact same hat in a larger size and I am not going to be as lazy as I was here to strand the colors all the way across. I think it will look neater if I don’t.

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Welcome to the fans of Crabby patties and Crows

As my sister noted, Site Meter is a fun way to see who looks at your blog, when and how they got there - whether through a link from another site or by a search.

Funny enough the most hits on my blog come because of the picture I put up in this post - and that is because of the picture of the crabby pattie I put there. Funny enough if you search Google Images mine is one of only 2 images of the crabby pattie (with that spelling). And that is what gets me most of my legitimate blog traffic. I get hits from Japan, Indonesia, Gemany, Sweden, Canada, Brazil and any number of states all because of that picture. Oh! The power of Sponge Bob!

My second most popular hit is from the word "crow" with out without embellishments. Many people are looking for the counting rhyme that I have made the "Description" for my blog. Others are looking I assume for crow information - If so try this site about all corvids .

So once again - welcome to the Sponge Bob and Corvid fans of the world. Leave me a note if you stop by.

Looong weekend

It is so nice having 4 days off at Thanksgiving and as this is the first time in a number of years we stayed home I feel extra specially relaxed. Of course I am already wishing we had more time off - but beggars can't be choosers.

Yesterday I did some tasks around the house; threw some leftovers out on the neighbor's dirt pile for the crows. I assume they headed down to get them as they are gone this morning - either that or the other neighbor's dog ate them. We had a nice platform bird feeder that was strong enough for the crows to land on – but someone and I suspect raccoons pulled it down. I need to get my act together to hammer it back together and reinforce it a bit more.

I also went to the hardware store and got a heat bulb for the chickens - came home and dropped it - yup $13 out the door. I wasn't happy and there by gave up on any more improvements for the day. While out and about I also picked up some yarn to knit a cap for a boy who is just now getting to Iraq. They need caps to go under their helmets and I thought that a brown cap with a pine-green outline of VT on the front would give him a little reminder of home.

I am using Knitusa by Lane Borgosesia. I found it in my local store on sale for about $4.60 a skein. That's about half the regular price and cheaper than anywhere I have looked online. It is a superwash bulky wool and has a very nice feel to it. (I stopped myself from buying enough to make a bulky sweater). I think it is going to make nice hats. I have already started a hat in black and white of the same yarn based loosely on the Hot Head hat in Stitch ‘n Bitch and on this hat from Hank Olsen mostly for the skully pattern.

I really need to get myself in gear – I have 3 hats and other small knitted items to finish for Christmas. And what am I doing instead? Making chicken stock and writing in this blog! I am pathetic. And now I think I need a nap. Why, oh why, am I such a procrastinator?

Friday, November 25, 2005

We had a lovely day yesterday. It seems like I cooked all day long, but we also had a lovely cheese and relish tray created by Ken.

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We also drank some wine and listened to Arlo Guthrie's "Alice's Restaurant". And we also watched the movie of the same name. I had never seen it before and it was much better than I imagined. It's an exhibit of what those times were like and while it has it's amusing moments, it is also quite sad.

Dinner was very good ( if I do say so myself). We could have done with just 2 cornish game hens rather than the 4 I cooked.

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After dinner and before the PIES Ken and I took a nice walk through the snow. Both pies turned out very well - I do so love custard pie.

Tulip's Thanksgiving was especially wonderful - as someone dropped a bowl of peas.

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Thursday, November 24, 2005

One to go ( uh-oh)

I am bravely making a custard pie with 10 eggs! It's a cholesterol nightmare but I bet it's going to taste excellent.

Guess what though - 10 eggs and a quart of milk is way more than one regular pie and unfortunately I already froze the other pie crusts. Well - I poured the extra in a bowl and I am baking that too - maybe it will turn out kind of creme brulee like - or maybe it will make a big mess? Who knows.

Here's the recipe
Custard Pie

10 eggs, beaten
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 quart scalded milk
1 tablespoon butter

Scald milk and butter. Let cool and then add to egg mixture composed of eggs, sugar, nutmeg and vanilla extract. Pour mixture into pie crust-lined (deep-dish) 9-inch pie plate. Place in a 450 degrees F preheated oven. Bake 20 minutes only. Turn heat completely off. Let pie stand in oven for 1 hour.

One pie Down

Here's the pumpkin pie - of course I should have covered the edge so that the crust didn't get too done. Oh well - we'll change that on the next one. It smells good. And included in the shot is the Beaujolais Nouveau!

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Maple Pumpkin Pie

I am kind of making this up as I go. I will let you know how it turns out:

Can of pumpkin
Can of Sweetened Condensed milk
1/2 cup maple syrup ( real from VT and best made by someone you know)
3 eggs slightly beaten (best from girls you know)
2 tsp flour - King Arthur from VT of course
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla (REAL)

Mix em all together and pour in an unbaked pie crust. I am lazy this year and am using the pillsbury frozen crusts.

Put it in a 450 degree oven for about 20 minutes then reduce temp to 350 for another 30 minutes. Outside edge of filling should be firm will inside should still be a little jiggly.

Happy Thanksgiving!

It's snowing! The Beaujolais Nouveau is here! The game hens are in the crock pot! (albeit a little squished) The pumpkin and custard pies are in the midst of being created. Mama is watching The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Ken's looking for the movie of Alice's Restaurant. Tulip does NOT have cancer.

It almost feels like Christmas. I am tempted to crack open a bottle of the Beujolais but as it is only 10 a.m. I think I better wait, don't you?

Monday, November 21, 2005

If it's not one thing it's another

Well- I took a urine sample for Tulip into the vet Friday as her pee has been smelling rather strongly. She has had a number of urinary tract infections over the last year or so and I had a feeling something not good was going on.
So the vet called Friday evening to say that the sample indicated the presence of cancer. They needed a second sample to send off to a lab ton Monday morning – so that is what I did first thing this morning

I also spent some time looking up canine cancer and came across a few sites – I have ordered K-9 Immunity supplement from Aloha Medicinals in Hawaii.

And from their site I found Cancer Herbal Treatments from Robert McDowell's Herbal Treatments in Australia .

I ordered their Bladder Cancer Support Treatment and also their Maritime Pine Bark Extract. George Peterson answered my order with questions about Tulip’s background and history and through a number of emails and a phone call (all the way from Australia!) suggested that I pay for UPS shipping to make sure the order gets here faster. He also suggested diet changes and some additions like flax seed and white millet for her old hips. I was very impressed and certainly hope that their products help.

I also found an article about Canine Cancer that suggested a special diet – higher in fat and low in carbs as cancer lives off carbs. So I just spent the last hour or so making up a batch to last (hopefully) 4 or 5 days.. Since we are just starting out I haven’t exactly figured out how much the old thing should get everyday – but I think we will start on the low side. With all the veggies in this mix she’s going to pooping like crazy!

Friday, November 18, 2005

Oh how they froth!

As I pulled into work this morning I noticed that a certain Rabid Republican type was pulling in right behind me and I had a feeling that I would hear about it later on as I have a number of bumperstickers on my car.

So as we walked back in to work from our P.O. run this lunchtime Ken and I passed above mentioned RR and she turned to me and said with some rancor slightly disguised with humor, "Your car used to get really good mileage* until you loaded it down with all that lefty bullshit** on the back." And I just smiled sweetly and kept on a walkin'. Really - I have noticed that more than anyone else the RRs of this world love to call you out and make nasty comments about your beliefs. And never more so than when they are backed up against the wall.

It can only make me prouder to drive that car knowing that it is driving people like that crazy. I think it's time to add a couple more stickers.

*it's a Prius
** In the interests of fairness - it turns out I heard "Lefty bullshit" but it was really something more like "leftist bulletin board". I heard that maybe because the tone was saying "bullshit" but it has been independently corroborated that I was wrong.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Two Crows Mirth, indeed.

Yesterday I took the old lady down to a follow-up appointment with her Neurosurgeon in Boston. On the long journey we passed from rainy weather at home to almost balmy weather as we neared the city. It also began to get quite windy. So we were, oh, just a little south of Concord on Route 2 and chugging along in fairly steady traffic and I see a crow up ahead flipping around strangely in the blustery weather. I could see that this was not just a random flight but that the crow seemed to be chasing something. But it wasn't another bird and it seems to be trying to catch whatever it was in its feet. Then a second crow flips into view and I see this one is doing the same thing and suddenly it has something in its beak and the first crow is now chasing and off they go. I realized at the last second that they were chasing the oak leaves that are being blown off the tall oaks that line the road. And that they were both after the same leaf as it flipped and twisted in the wind.

I wondered of all the people that were traveling along with me at the time - how many noticed that little display of joy?

Monday, November 14, 2005

Vine Deloria, Jr.

It's hard for me to believe but Vine Delor ia Jr died on Sunday and I only saw it now - as a diary by Land of Enchantment on DailyKos. There is hardly an article about him listed when you use Google News. Go ahead and try.

I find it unbelieveable that the man who wrote Custer Died for Your Sins and We Talk, You Listen could pass so unremarked.

11/15 Update - Well - there's finally some more articles out there now about Mr. Deloria; the Times, the Indy Star, etc.

Sunday, November 13, 2005


Well - this has been a wasted weekend - although I helped someone yesterday morning with their gaming convention I had a wicked headache the entire time. I was going to take myself out to lunch but decided it would be a waste of time as this headache was just taking over the entire day. So I came home a slept a few hours - got up in the evening and ate something - watched a little TV and knitted a bit. Then was back to sleep around 9.

Got up this morning at 10 with the headache still there. Ate some breakfast - took some pills and went back to bed till noon. I have now managed to take a shower - I feel slightly better - it is not so much pain now as a weird feeling of one side of my head being larger than the other and my eyes - hmm - it's not that they are focusing differently - but there is something going on vision-wise. Thank heavens I don't have this kind of headache too often. It started out Friday as a "normal" sinus headache and morphed into this horror yesterday.

So pretty much the weekend is shot. I couldn't even appreciate the beauty of the day yesterday - the sunlight hurt too much - or the fact that Howard Dean was on Russert this morning and did a bang-up job answering Timmy's stupid assertations.


Tuesday, November 08, 2005

The Party of Exclusion

The other day I read David Neiwert's blog posting about vote suppression in Washington State. That got me thinking about the individual people who claim allegiance to the Republican Party. How best to define them? I think they are people who exclude others; exclude them from the country, exclude them from voting, exclude them from benefits, exclude them from the Bill of Rights.

Yet while they say "those people" should not receive health care or food assistance or anything "free", they are making sure that "our kind" is getting the best of everything. Well - "We have the money, are the right color, know the right people, speak the right way. How could we not deserve those things?"

Those people who seem most drawn to the "Republican values" are those who seem to like to define themselves by highlighting the differences of others, and lessening the humanity and/or importance of anyone deemed "other". What are they so afraid of? Being excluded themselves?

In a way I feel sorry for them, until I see the damage they have caused. I think their fear of the "Other" is the most animal of fears; like a flock of chickens attacking the weakest or newest member, they create solidarity by attacking differences and excluding them. They do not rise above their animal instincts, they do not use their intelligence to better humanity. What if "humanity was defined in terms of intelligence, civility, and the pursuit of justice rather than by species or form"**?

I don't think the Republican's could endure that.

**Six Moon Dance, Sherri S. Tepper

Monday, November 07, 2005

Damned Chickens

I made it through the work day pretty well. Came home and decided to really clean out the chicken waterers to keep in style with the newly winterized coop. When I brought the water back out to them I noticed that I had missed stapling plastic over one little section of the insulation - oh yes - and it was within their reach.

They had obviously spent the day saying “Oooooh loook at thiiis! oooh it's nice to peck at! Ooooooh hoooow loooovely.” Damn them. Luckily it looks like they did more pecking than eating - but I told them anyone who's filled up with styrofoam is on their own. I have had enough with impacted crops and slicing them open to clean them out.

While I was getting the plastic to cover it over they thought they would have one more go at it and started up pecking at it again. Damn them.

Spent the rest of the night catering to the old lady, got her dinner and then a million other things she wanted. Made egg salad for her lunch tomorrow. Cleaned the kitchen floor – folded 2 loads of wash and filled the dishwasher. I am exhausted. It’s 8:30 and I am ready for bed. I hope I have someone to take care of my every need when I am old.

I have to take time off tomorrow to get her to a flu clinic – almost all the clinics around here have been cancelled. So we are going to be lucky to get one tomorrow, hopefully they won’t run out of vaccine.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Weekend recovery

Ken is home from Worcester - sound like he had a marvelous time. I do wish I could have gone. I like being an aging groupie.

The girls, however, are happy I stayed home and insulated their coop with blue board - or as it officially comes across the invoice, "grayboard". It is of course very very blue. So I assume this is another one of the ways that men have come up with to confuse women who want to buy stuff at the hardware store.

Girls admiring the new insulation
Jaerhons, one Dominique and a couple of mutts

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I have not completely finished the coop winterization - but I won't cover the window over until it is much colder and I am leaving the ceiling of the coop till next weekend as I didn't want Ken to miss out on all the fun. The worst is over though and I have set up a light to extend daylight for them as I am now getting only one egg a day - and I should be getting 5. The new girls should be getting ready to lay too. I can usually tell when they are going to start because their combs will get very red - and they get much talkier.

The new Jaerhon - who lacks a name right now - is very fond of me - probably because she was alone with only me for company for the first month or so of her life. She likes to see what I am doing all the time and I had a hard time keeping her out of the barn while I worked. I was afraid the silly thing would be picking up pieces of styrofoam insulation while I worked so I had to keep chasing her out.

Now that I am cleaned up I really want to go out and have a beer at the Killarney- Ken seems a little worn out - so we might not go. I am going to call him in a bit and hopefully the little nap he's had for the last hour will have perked him up. Tried Sandy earlier to see if she and Bob want to come too - but no answer, I shall try them again too!

Winterization in progress
I am a very messy worker!

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Saturday, November 05, 2005

Chicken Coop Hell

Well - after $60 and about 5 hours work I am maybe a quarter done with winterizing the coop. What a pain in the ass. As usual once I started the project I realized there was a lot more to it than just throwing the stuff up on the walls.

Luckily I didn't need to watch my friend's son - so I didn't have the added task of amusing a kid. I was free to be as cranky as I wanted.

Didn’t manage to help the old lady take a shower either - we are scheduling that for tomorrow morning. I did take her for a walk so we accomplished something today!

I would like to know why my heels hurt so much though. Mostly my left heel. I hope it isn’t bone spurs or something.

But on another happy note - Another of the bastards is getting his due.
Kenneth Tomlinson has resigned from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. He's the main bastard that tried to pull CPB down , saying that it was too liberal. Well guess what Mr. Tomlinson is "too"? He's too crooked. It's like we have reached some critical mass with this administration and it's all going to come tumbling down.

Got plans for the weekend?

We sure do!

Well, Ken will soon be off to Worcester to his friend Scott's CD release party. Scott's band Huck is releasing “Never Been Nowhere” tonight at Ralph's Chadwick Square Diner, 95 Prescott St., Worcester, MA. If you're in the area tonight - go on over - Huck is great and I am sorry not to be able to go.

I am staying home to watch the old lady - we're having a shower and getting our asses out for a walk. I am also watching my friend's son while they go off shopping for his birthday. So we will have an action packed day. I have plans for cleaning out the chicken coop and winterizing it too! WOW could you plan for any more fun? And throw an almost-12-year-old boy into the mix and it's going to be all excitement all the time!

OH! and I have to say that I am not at all sad that the Bush world seems to be going all wahooni shaped. I guess that Argentina wasn't the best place to try and get away from the troubles at home. In fact it sounds like Bush is actually stirring up support for socialism!

As Mr. Chávez spoke, he was interrupted by chants from the crowd mocking Mr. Bush. Every mention of Fidel Castro, in contrast, was cheered, as were frequent references by Mr. Chávez to his desire to unite all of Latin America in a new wave of socialism.
NY Times, By LARRY ROHTER and ELISABETH BUMILLER, Published: November 5, 2005

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Benny's on a sunny afternoon

Today it is 66 degrees and with a gusty yet balmy wind. Just the afternoon to take a little ride before taking the car in for inspections. It was lovely!

I headed down the road towards Rockingham to get the car warmed up as it is the old lady's car and hasn't been out much - got her nice and warmed up before heading back to Benny's.

When I got there the old guy I usually get to do the inspection was busy, but as I know he is the "inspection" guy I waited - until a young kid asked if I needed help. I said why I was there and miracle of miracles he started to do it. I then foolishly began to hope that I would be out of there in a reasonable amount of time. But no- the old guy got done with what he was doing and took over. This is a problem because although the inspection only takes 10 minutes - the paper work for this guy takes anywhere from a half hour to 45 minutes and you better hope the phone doesn't ring while he's doing it - or you may be there an hour.

I have been going to Benny's for our car inspections for 3 years now (glutton for punishment, obviously) and in all that time this guy has not gotten any faster with the paper work. I have watched him copy over the VIN number at a pace that a snail would beat. And here in Vermont he has to copy it twice! Once on the paper work and one onto the back of the sticker.

The first time he inspected my car - he finally finished the paper work and slowly applied the sticker. And as I was about to jump in the car and drive away after handing him the money he said - "Wait let me get you a receipt." Oh god no! So now I am careful to pay with a check rather than cash so he doesn't feel the need to do the receipt.

Anyway - today was a perfect day to hang out at the garage because of the lovely weather - and I was already resigned to being there at least 45 minutes - so I didn't mind. Also it gave me a chance to observe the inner workings of Benny's - Benny ( and I know that's not his real name - I just like to think of the guy in charge as "Benny") often gets exasperated at his guys - and that is always good for a chuckle. You can tell he is thinking "why, oh why, have I been saddled with this bunch of dimwits!" And they look at him like confused puppy dogs while he yells. And then they go right back to doing what they were doing in the way they were doing it after he finishes. Poor cranky Benny!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Happy November!

OK - when you live in Vermont you kind of dread November, the month of cold rains and brisk wind slapping wet dead leaves into your face as you struggle to put away all the outdoor furniture you should have put away weeks ago.

So when you wake up ( as I did yesterday) and look out to a beautiful warm November 1st dawn, you need to take a few pictures. And best of all people - it got up to 70 degrees! I know I know - global warming and climate change are going to be the end of the world as we know it - but it was WARM and SUNNY in NOVEMBER!

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