15 November 2017

Home sweet home

What a season it's been!

I got home last Thursday after a long, rainy, traffic-filled drive. Friday saw me unloading (but not unpacking), and helping Jack tidy up before his folks arrived Friday afternoon for the weekend. We spent Saturday driving them around to see Lassen National Park, Susanville, and other sites in between. All the while, 2 bushels and a peck of pomegranates were waiting in the spare room...

Once the in-laws headed out on Sunday it was time to get busy. First, we were cutting pomegranates and sorting good from bad, then soaking the good and separating the pith from the seeds, then came the juicing! We used the food mill for about 30 minutes before I asked why we weren't just using the juicer? It made for cloudier juice, as it tends to grind a lot of the seeds as well as the flesh, but it tasted just fine! Exhausted, we called it a night.

Monday was canning day. We dug around for all my canning equipment, and I got busy processing 2 gallons of juice, making and canning a quart of grenadine, freezing the foamiest parts of the juice into a pint of sorbet and 6 popsicles, while Jack helped to separate the remaining seeds so that I could dehydrate them.

Tuesday was cleaning day. So many messes needed to be cleaned up after all of this, and there's still plenty. I also got a wild hair (perhaps from the smell of woodsmoke in the chill air?) for marshmallows. Well, I figured, I'll just make them myself! Turns out I've had a couple packs of gelatin in the drawer for a long time... finally put some of it to use! I've now decided that marshmallows are easy enough to never have to buy at the store again, and I've also figured out how to make a small batch so that my biggest beef with marshmallows (buying a bag of them and never being able to finish them until long after they're rock solid) won't have to happen again. Of course, I didn't figure out how to make the small batch until after I made this one, so I'm stuck with lots of marshmallows now... which I have every intention of sharing with friends and neighbors! 'Tis the season, after all!

Now that it's Wednesday, I'm finally taking the time to focus on my homework again. I'm about 4 days behind where I wanted to be, but I'm still ahead of schedule overall, and I have every intention of making more headway over the next few days now that I'm more settled.

Of course, settled is a relative term. A week from now we'll be heading to my cousin's for Thanksgiving, and afterwards we plan to drive down to Jack's aunt and uncle in SoCal, from where I'll be boarding a plane to Michigan for a couple weeks, then a train back to NorCal. So really it'll be mid-December before I really get to catch a break and get into a winter groove. But no matter, I'm excited for the off-season, and we're happy to be home together after the summer.

And today?

We've gotten our first bit of snow!!!!!!!

Until next time!

01 October 2017

Full Moon / Sunrise Summit of Lassen Peak

This is a photo blog. Jack and I got up at 4am and drove to Lassen National Park to summit Lassen Peak on September 9th. It was amazing. Cold, beautiful, an amazing play of light and shadow, color and haze, up close and far away. We made it to the 1/2-mile from the top marker before the sun truly came up in all her big, blazing glory. 
After the descent, we went over to Jack's worksite to see the progress he'd made on his rock wall. He took a couple photos of me on top of it - know that the actual wall extends another several feet to the left of the photo, and the rocks were placed, chiseled, cut, on all three tiers. 
Don't forget, if you click on the photos they should show up bigger on your screen. Enjoy!

10 September 2017

Another update is forthcoming...

It's been a month full of adventures and I've barely kept up with the photos, and definitely not with the stories! I'm currently uploading some 300+ photos (& videos) to my computer to sort through and come up with a post - hopefully by next week!

I am currently enjoying the end of a 4-day weekend at home, and away from smoke. No, I'm not in any danger where I'm working (at least not yet), but I've had plenty of smokey, hazy days, and being up in the Westwood area has largely been a good break for the lungs!

Last month saw plenty more hiking, backpacking, and exploring around work and home, as well as an end to the summer semester (I got an A), and the beginning of the fall semester for my masters. I am now over the halfway point in my degree program!! So exciting!!

Alright, more stories will come when I get the photos sorted this week and figure out which ones are best to post, so...

Until next time!