Tuesday, November 30, 2021

A charmingly late Thanksgiving

Last year, we had an "alternate" Thanksgiving dinner: sushi. That's because we were still camping in our rental house and had no means to cook a fancy dinner.

This year, because Older Daughter and I both had to work on Thanksgiving, we postponed our celebration until Sunday. At that point Older Daughter was able to take Monday off, so she came up early Sunday and spent the night.

I took the turkey out of the freezer and put it in the fridge a week ahead of time. We actually bought this turkey something like two years ago and it's been living in our freezer ever since. It's nice to have the space back.

Since Older Daughter was bringing veggies and dessert, my day was actually very easy. I started by making rolls, specifically half-time spoon rolls. First rising:

Second rising:

Done (after being brushed with melted butter):

While I worked on these, believe it or not Don was assembling the Christmas tree (!!). We didn't have one last year since we moved here to our new house just days before Christmas, so I think he just missed engaging in the festivities.

Besides, he unashamedly intended to put Older Daughter to work decorating the tree while she was here.

I made wild rice stuffing, my personal indulgence.

Also mashed potatoes.

I kept up with dishes so nothing got overwhelming.

We put the turkey in the oven about the time Older Daughter showed up.

While the turkey baked, we took Mr. Darcy for a walk, then all pitched in to decorate the Christmas tree.

Then Older Daughter put the finishing touches on her desserts: pistachio pie and French silk pie. Looks professional, no?

The French silk pie gave her no end of trouble. The day before, she'd messaged: "Yeesh, I just messed up on every single step of that French silk pie (that's what I get for not triple-checking the recipe), but I finally wrangled it into a pie shape and the filling tastes quite good. Whew!" (Both pies were delicious.)

She also brought ingredients for her specialty, green beans in oyster sauce. Out-of-this-world good.

We had just pulled the turkey out of the oven...

...when we all simultaneously happen to see one of the prettiest sunsets we'd seen since moving here. We all tumbled outside to admire it.

A distant farmhouse looked magical.

Back indoors, Don carved the turkey...

...and we all sat down to our feast.

We have so much to be grateful for this year, it's hard to know where to begin. God is good.

NaNoWriMo – done!

Phew! I finally passed the 50,000-word mark on my NaNoWriMo project!

Here are my stats from the website:

And the badges earned, including the little winner's mountaintop thingybobber signifying a completed project:

I realize most of you are probably supremely indifferent to this issue, but let me tell you it has dominated my month. It's nice to have it over and done with, just as it's nice to have a completed rough draft for my next Amish inspirational.

On a different subject, we have a lovely belated Thanksgiving. I'll post photos shortly.

Thank you, dear readers, for your patience as I juggled the last crazy four weeks!

Saturday, November 27, 2021

Maternity ward

This made me laugh. Been there done that.

Friday, November 26, 2021

Only 6,600 words to go

I'm still slogging along on my NaNoWriMo word count.

It's been an intense month, but I only have 6,600 words left to go!

Yowza, this book will take a LOT of editing when the first draft is finished. But at least I've got a draft to edit. Progress!

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Remember the cat who fell upstairs?

I'm sure you all remember Older Daughter's cat Frumpkin – the Cat Who Fell Upstairs. For new readers, Frumpkin was abandoned by people who moved out (this was in our old neighborhood). He was left to fend for himself, a cruel fate for a former house cat.

He sorta adopted us and became our barn cat, where at least he was fed and out of the elements. When Older Daughter returned from her job in New Jersey, she fell in love with the cat, named him Frumpkin, and took him with her when she got her own apartment. He's been living the life of Riley ever since.

Older Daughter arbitrarily decided today was his birthday. Why today? Because it's the anniversary of his adoption (by her). In reality, she has no idea how old he is. She guesstimates he's six years old, because last year the vet said he's probably at least five.

For his birthday, Older Daughter got Frumpkin a present: a water fountain.

"So I set up Frumpkin's water fountain today," she messaged. "He was extremely unsure about it."

"I stood there with a camera poised for a while before I realized the best way to get a cat to do something is to make them think they're doing it in secret, so I pretended to work in the kitchen. Sure enough..."

"Then I got his birthday tuna."

"He was impatient because I wouldn't let him have it until I blew out the candle."

"Happy cat."

"That's his default position when I'm on the computer."

More pics:

Older Daughter concluded by saying, "He's living a good life, that cat."

I'd say she's right. Happy Arbitrary Birthday, Frumpkin.

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

No Thanksgiving tomorrow

We won't be holding Thanksgiving tomorrow since Older Daughter and I are both working.

Instead, we'll be holding our dinner on Sunday, when Older Daughter will be able to join us.

Meanwhile, I wish you all a blessed, peaceful, and abundant Thanksgiving, dear readers.

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

First snowfall

Yesterday we had lovely weather: high temp 50F, sunny, beautiful.

Fat quail in the driveway:

Fat turkeys in the field:

Today is quite a contrast. We've had frosts and the faintest dusting of snow in the last couple weeks, but today we had our first real snowfall. Not much – maybe half an inch – but very pretty.

To Darcy, snow is just a bonus on his walks.

Every needle and leaf was dusted.

The rocks somehow looked more muscular.

The spider webs caught a lot more snow than flies.

The fat quail in the driveway were suddenly a lot more visible.

Needless to say, the bird feeder has been popular.

The snow isn't expected to last – temps get back into the 40s by Thursday – but this is a portend of things to come. I'm so grateful we have our firewood in and our cookstove installed.

Let the winter come.