Friday, October 28, 2011

The Chalk Line

In case no one noticed, it snowed for the first time yesterday.  Already.  In October.  Now, up here in these here parts, we live "above the chalk line".  Living below and above the chalk line is the difference between this:
(Down in town - at the beginning of The Hill)

And this:
(two miles up The Hill)

Both pictures taken this morning!  About one mile up The Hill, there is an imaginary line (the "chalk line").  One minute you are driving in rain or a little wet snow, with wet roads.  You pass the line and immediately it is full-on snow and snow covered road. It's a little weird because it is that drastic.  Not around a bend or a gradual change.  Just an immediate change.  Fun in a true snow storm, let me tell you.

Remember this picture from yesterday's post?
Check it out now:

So, Mandy and I had a nice, post-snow morning walk around the yard today:

 (Hoping to find the bunny that left those tracks...)

 (pretty pink sky!)

 (How can you not love snow when you look at how much fun she has?)

OK, the NEXT post will be the book review....

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Goat Wrangling in Kentucky

This one's a long one:  pull up a chair and get a beverage....

Last week we made a trip to Bowling Green, Kentucky!  There is a yearly drag racing event there that Paul likes to go to with his friend Rob and Rob's dad, Ray.

The boys.  (Don't you love the matching shirts?)

This year, since I don't have the shop, I got to go with them.  When I asked Paul how long it takes to get there, he said "Anywhere from 16-22 hours, depending."  On what???  Traffic, blown trailer tires, etc.  I decided to go anyway.  And to save you the suspense, it took 18 hours on the way, and 16 1/2 on the way home.

The ride there was rather uneventful and I spent the first 1/2 of the trip working on my Boogie vest:
  But then I got to a part that I had to separate and knit to a certain number of inches but I couldn't find my tape measure.   So I tried to work on my Tudor Henley, started almost 3 years ago and has come to be known as my vacation project since that is the only time I work on it.  BUT, I had to knit to a certain number of inches and couldn't find my tape measure.  Put that one down and picked up my Froot Loop socks.  At that time we were in Pennsylvania and Route 80 was so incredibly bumpy that I couldn't knit.  So, we listened to Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me podcasts.   At our lunch stop, there was a dollar store nearby so I got a tape measure!

Some picture of the trip there:
 Mercer is a town in Pennsylvania!!! (AND a county)

Finally made it across bumpy Pennsylvania to Ohio:

Then finally got to the bottom of Ohio, to Cincinnati:

And then over the bridge into:
(that says "Kentucky"!)

The Beech Bend drag strip is in the middle of these feilds and goats:

 (at the top of the picture is the drag strip - right behind the goats!)
(also, note the brown fence way back will be important later)

On our first day there, Thursday, it was my birthday!  The only request I had for the day was to get a tea and a pumpkin muffin from Dunkin' Donuts.  I LOVE DD's pumkin muffins.  So. Good.  On the way to the track we set out to stop there.  Over the course of about 4 miles of very busy commercial road (think Route 20 in the Albany area, or Route 44 or the Berlin Turnpke in the Connecticut area), there were NO Dunkin' Donuts.  None. Zip.  On the aforementioned roads, there would be about 50.  I was pretty disappointed.

So, we stopped at the local Speedway (gas station with a little convenience store) and I got a tea and a package of Krispy Kreme's.  When I got to the counter, I asked the guy if there were any DD's around.  He looked at me sideways and said, "Well, there is.... but, if you want a really good donut, you should go to The Great American Donut Shop."  He went on and on about how good their donuts and apple fritters are, even ranking/describing his favorite donuts.  He said, "At the risk of losing a sale (my Krispy Kremes), I'd send you there.  They are past temptation and straight into sin."  I got the Krispy Kreme's anyway but the next day:
 They were quite good -- almost as good as he built them up to be.

I spent the whole day reading a great knitting novel,Wishes and Stitches: A Cypress Hollow Yarn (Cypress Hollow Yarns)  Click there to purchase it and/or read about it.  It was a great, light, romancy novel.  Loved. It.

Also, Thursday was quite cold (50 degrees as opposed to the 70 degree weather at home!) so we spent a lot of time in Paul's car trailer, where we had a heater and a great view of the starting line:

There are Paul (on the left) and Rob (on the right) lined up at the starting line:

Friday was an eventful day.  Since we didn't have to be at the track until 11:30, we made a trip to a local yarn shop:
Paul had gone to this shop and bought me some sock yarn on a trip a couple of years ago.  He even did a guest post on the shop blog about it!  The owner, Starla, remembered Paul (and Rob and Ray) as there are not many times a man comes into the shop to buy yarn for his wife.    She was so happy to meet me and gave me a hug.  
Here is my loot:
Dishcloth book and cotton yarn for discloths (holiday gift for Mrs. C - don't tell her!); sock yarn; and some superwash worsted for mittens.  Yay!  Love. It.!

The other event of Friday was my goat wrangling adventure (ah, here's where the post title comes in!).  I walked up to take some pictures of the goats (and duck) that live right next to the track:
 There were lots of adorable goat kids!

(ha ha! Look at that one mid-leap!)

I had to pass through the main gate to get to the field and the lady at the gate said,"Looks like some are getting out."  I looked and sure enough there were some goats slithering through their fence!  They ended up in the grass right next to the track:

(no fence...)
So, I'm thinking that I've seen lots of sheep  herding demonstrations with border collies, so why don't I try to get them back in?  I went down to the grass where the were and circled way around them so that they ended up between me and the gate.  And they started running to the gate!:

Then, they ran down the path and squirmed under the fence into the field.  If you look closely you can see the last one squirming (on the right):
 Then they all suddenly started running from the field to the barn.  I felt pretty proud of myself (getting them ALL to go to the barn) until I got back to the main gate and the lady told me someone had told someone else and it seemed pretty apparent that they called them back to the barn.

Saturday was the official race day (the other days were test & tune and qualifying).  Here is Paul lining up for his race (that's him in the station wagon):

And here he is losing in the first round:

Boooooooo.  He said that the other guy deserved to win because "He cut a perfect light."  For the racing novices, this means that when the light went green, the other guy had a perfect reaction time (which is VERY hard to do) and Paul's was a little slower.  Unfortunately, Rob also lost,but in the second round, so we were done pretty early for the day.

And what does that mean?????


As we were getting ready to leave Bowling Green on Sunday morning at 3:00am, look at this:

A closer look:
 That is the shadow of Rob's car on Paul's trailer, with the trailer wheels in the exact right spot! (And Rob is in there too).  Pretty neat.

Uneventful ride home, but came home to chilly weather and the need for this:
 The first fire of the season!  Warm and toasty.

And this pretty view from our dining room:

Whew! Hopefully you are still with me...  I hope the next post will be a review about that book I "had" to read The Homecoming of Samuel Lake: A Novel .

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

NY State Sheep and Wool Festival re-cap

We had such a nice time in Rhinebeck for the Sheep and Wool Festival!  Sunday was a gorgeous day - perfect for festival-ing.  But first, on Saturday, Paul and I took the looooooong way down in order to enjoy the scenic views.  It was a nice ride and we got to Everready Diner just in time to meet "the girls" (see below for a picture of them) for dinner.

Sunday morning, we got to the fairgrounds bright and early and still met a crowd waiting to get in:

We made a beeline to The Spinning Room booth before things got too crowded, so I could get a picture of "the girls":
And here they are again, with Yvette showing the back of her shirt:
Hers and Joan's said "Shop Girl", Deirdre's said "Owner Girl" and Deirdre's mom Joan's said "Mom".  Very cute!  Deirdre and her mom are both wearing hats made from the very popular Pagewood Farms yarn that has felted flowers already in it.  More very cute!

Then off we went in search of food, fiber and fsheep (see that?...trying to keep the alliteration going...).  Food was aplenty as always.  I got to the artichoke booth early this time and we didn't have to wait for the deep fried artichokes:
Very tasty and next time I will try the "French" ones, with butter, olive oil, garlic and parmesean.....
And Paul had chili cheese fries:
He is so patient.  Every time he goes to eat something I say, "Wait!  let me get my camera to take a picture for the blog."  And he does.

I was terribly disappointed by the fried dough....
Much greasier than usual (if you can imagine that).  AND it was a windy day so the sugar got all over me (you can see it in the picture.)  Then there was kettle corn and italian bread to take home.  

Enough of the food....We also browsed all the booths and stalls....

I purchased a skein of the Periwinkle Sheep Rhinebeck 2011 colorway - a very pretty periwinkle; and a sock yarn called Nightfall, which starts out pink, then goes into a patterning with pink and gray, then becomes all gray.   Hard to describe how cool it looks until I knit it up.

We saw lots of Spinning Room friends too.  All in all it was a great day.

Then look what came TODAY!!!
Yay!  Haven't even looked at it yet.  I'm saving it up until I get all my chores done so I can relax and look through it.  And cook something from it.

Stay tuned for a racing post!