thursday

Apr. 13th, 2017 07:48 am
summersgate: (eggshells)
4-13-17-tree-life
I see a tree that has been damaged, splitting, cracking apart but still alive and bursting with life. Spring is happening.

I had a headache most of yesterday and felt fuzzy. My tinnitus was extra loud. But in it's own way it was a good day with lots of talking to friends, lots of crying, which was just what I needed. Getting used to life as it is. Hazel drove me to the store for some shopping and carried the groceries in for me. I made progress on the crocheted baby blanket. Watched episodes of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt - good silliness. Dave swept off the front porch and back porch and made them nice. He mowed the back yard for the first time this year too. I ate my supper out back at the picnic table. We (Dave and I, Hazel and Rossy) walked Andy down to the creek and threw his ball with the ball thrower in the lower yard. Hazel has got a great throwing arm - I think cause she is so tall - and Andy got a really good work out. He loves to chase the ball.

Tomorrow Johnny and Alison and Chloe and Mike are coming for a visit. Chloe wants me to show her some new hiking trails where she can take her ARC clients. I think we will show her the trail to Rainbow Rocks - it will be a relatively easy walk that her clients can handle. Mike and Dave are going fishing.

It looks like it's going to be a beautiful day today. I have a big pot with a passionflower vine in it. I might have killed it with neglect over the winter but I want to get it planted outside soon - there might still be hope for it. I won't be able to lift it myself but I bet I can get a grandkid to help me. I am not very good with most houseplants, except succulents. I think the passionflower will have better luck outside, even with our winters - they can withstand some freezing.

I have had a dreamwidth account since 2010 but I only use it to back up my LJ now and then and never post there. The last time I backed it up was in 2012 but I am backing it up today. I have a different name there: Summersgate. https://summersgate.dreamwidth.org/ I don't want to leave LJ and don't plan to leave but just in case something happens to LJ I will be covered. I will still be posting my entries on LJ.
summersgate: (eggshells)
mini-book-bag
I really like how the mini bag turned out that I made to carry the little book I want to keep track of my food in. It only took a couple hours to make it (book and bag) last night. I think this little bag would make a neat gift. If I find a friend admiring it I will make them one too. It is a good size for a cell phone or wallet. I'm not going on a diet - can't stand doing things like that - but I figure it wouldn't hurt to be more aware of what I am eating. It might change what I am eating if I am taking note of it.

hiking-bag-3-21-17
This is a bag that was constructed in a similar way, but larger, that I made a couple weeks ago. I ended up not liking it with the thin strap that I put on it. I originally made the bag to carry when hiking in the summer when I wouldn't need to take along extra clothing but after I put in a bottle of water it was too heavy and the strap dug my shoulder too much. Chloe loved the bag when she saw it and I gave it to her. It would be fine with lightweight things in it.

Dave and I went early this morning and picked up our taxes from our tax lady. We owe about $700. I actually made money again last year with my business. Though I doubt this year I will be making a profit. Since I quit offering the made-to-size rings and bracelets I am not getting near as much business as before. I still wouldn't go back to making to-size things. I like making what I want, when I want and making things for fun and to my own liking - even if they don't sell right away.
summersgate: (eggshells)
P1040753-wheel
Candy and I saw this interesting thing while on our walk today where a tree is trying to envelope an iron wheel.

P1040763-wheel-closer
Closeup.

We navigated another way to to get to the overlook, going part of the way using old woods roads instead of the marked trails. That was a triumph. Here's a couple pictures taken at the overlook - of things you have seen before but now it is a new season... )

It was good to get out today.

In the alternate reality - the one that I had been planning since December of last year (but it got accidentally erased) - I would be arriving in Florida right about this moment, walking up to my sister, brother-in-law and niece and giving them a big hug. The best-laid plans of mice and men.

monday

Mar. 20th, 2017 09:05 pm
summersgate: (eggshells)
Didn't sleep well last night. Went to bed early (for me) around 10, and then woke up at 2. I ended up going out to the dining table with my ipad and listened to music on it and crocheting. I'm making a colorful granny square bag that I can take with me when I'm hiking to hold things like water, keys, camera, emergency granola bar, phone, compass. I will just leave my gps watch on it all the time. Went back to bed around 4. But then I did not want to get up at 7 when my alarm went off. Reset my alarm for 8 and tried to sleep. Didn't get my early morning meditation stuff done like I like to each day. Today was hiking with Candy day and we went back to the Kennerdell Tract. Hiked the Strip Mine trail, the Bear Wallow trail and came back by way of the Pipeline trail. We didn't see any bears on Bear Wallow but there was a lot of mud to wallow through. When we got back the hike was four miles nearly exactly. I wasn't sure I wanted to go farther than that today. The sleepless night, the worry I've been having just makes me distracted and my left heel is hurting a lot again.

Still carrying the IR camera. Here is photo of a bright green mossy rock with Candy's hand. I color-corrected the photo for skin color otherwise the whole thing would have been bluish gray:
P1040131-mossy-rock-3-20-17

And another of the trail near a little pond. Also color-corrected but this time in a different way - for a bluer sky:
stripmine-trail-3-20-17

I mention worry - sometimes I think right now I worry more about the future of the US and the world than I do about what is going on in my own body. If this biopsy shows something bad than that is just me and our family that is affected - if the US government doesn't take care of our own people then the whole country is affected and if they make stupid decisions then the whole world can be affected. I have never before felt our world so drastically in jeopardy. To have a selfish, mean spirited, rude, twittering and childish billionaire in charge of our future is just plain scary.

Thank goodness though, there is something else to think about. Grateful for:
hiking,
getting ready for biking season,
crochet,
reading (Life after Life, the new granny square book and the Red Book),
Dave,
Andy (who is getting better everyday and becoming a good dog),
Milo and Skye (relaxing animals to have around)
Yoshi (odd creature)
the kids (Jules, Chloe and Johnny),
the grandkids (Hazel, Sebby and Rossy)
my friends who care about me,
and sister Kathy who I will be hopefully seeing soon,
and a future with chickens!
summersgate: (eggshells)
I'm trying to post my LJ stuff at night rather than in the morning like I usually do, in a effort to be on the computer less each day - to be more balanced. The daytime is for working, creating, hiking, being outdoors, being with real live people - the night is for TV and internet.

Candy and I hiked to the Two Mile Run dam today. It was a really beautiful morning - sunny and not cold - not hot either.

Two-Mile-Run-road-2-2-17
This is the dirt road we walked on to get to the trail that goes into the woods. Then we took a wrong turn and walked on a really beautiful trail overlooking a stream far below. I don't regret going the wrong way and getting on that trail at all. Then we got it figured out and backtracked to the correct trail to the dam.

Two-Mile-Run-dam-2-20-17
The dam.

Oh - and 2 more photos I took today.

candy's-bracelets-2-20-17
Candy's bracelets - I really like them.

candy's-rocks-2-20-17
This is a collection of rocks that Candy has picked up on her walks (some were given to her or brought to her by her sons). She added one from our walk today - a small white one.
summersgate: (eggshells)
P1040477-sunny-hill
Sunny hillside. Dave and I took Andy on another run today. This time on the gamelands near Panther Run. It got too late in the afternoon to make it to Panther Rocks but it was a nice walk anyway. Sunny and warm (for February). Pictures HERE. )
summersgate: (eggshells)
Candy and I hiked up to the Big Rock at 2 Mile Run this morning. Just a dumb little thing I was thinking of - the song Big Rock Candy Mountain. I lost the map halfway to the rock - it must have fallen out of my pocket after we crossed the last bridge (I remember having it then) and either we could have turned back to find it or I could try and trust my memory of the map. I decided to trust my memory. We did go on a wrong trail for a ways but after a while I thought we should backtrack and try to find a different trail. Which was the correct one. Stuff like this always reminds me of a quote attributed to Danial Boone. "I can't say as ever I was lost, but I was bewildered once for a few days." I wish I could be that confident - I like a map and a marked trail. After our hike I wanted to go to the park office and see if they had any better maps of the trails. They had 3 - the regular map with everything but updated from the internet version and one with horse trails and one with bike trails. Maybe the new maps will help me in the future to figure out what is going on there. Some pictures HERE. )

saturday

Feb. 11th, 2017 07:04 pm
summersgate: (eggshells)
P1040327-secluded-lake
Icy little lake.

This afternoon Dave and I took Andy for a walk on a piece of property that we are part owners of with 2 of his brothers - it's down in Butler County. I must have walked on it once, 25 years ago when they first bought it cause I remembered a small isolated lake in a steep valley that had been formed from strip mining but other than that it seemed all new to me. More photos HERE )
summersgate: (eggshells)
P1040324-ceek-best

Jan and I walked up one of the creeks at Two Mile Run today - very squishy and lots of puddles that needed skirted but not raining. Dry on the head - wet on the feet. Looking forward to exploring more trails out there. We went out on Northward trail and came back by the way of Boone trail. Other names of trails I look forward to hiking someday: Raccoon, Bridal, Sandy Loop, Whitetail, Big Buck, Black Gum, Deer Meadow, Long Beard, Trefoil, Cornplanter, Seneca, Big Rock, Cauvel Run, Blue Gill. I wish they had the trails marked better out there. We had to guess a lot of the time if we were on a proper trail or not. The trails are on the map but there are no markings in the woods. And some trails are marked in the woods but there is nothing on the map about them. Confusing.

I've been avoiding putting epoxy in that ring I was supposed to fix for an old classmate. I keep thinking about it. I ground up some small turquoise beads into powder today and mixed a little bit into some clear epoxy and used it to fill a crack in one of my own old turquoise rings. Maybe later after I see how that turns out I will be more confident about doing the same to his ring. That seems to be the best option - after much (too much) thought on the matter. It is what I imagined I would do in the beginning but I had to let it build up in me to certainty I guess.
summersgate: (eggshells)
Hiking. Two different places. Sunday it was Dave, Rossy, Andy and me going out on the game lands to a hill overlooking Polk. We went out the wide open trail till it came to the woods. From there the trail winds its way through the trees and is harder to find, but all you have to do is stay on the top of the ridge till you get to the end. That's where you can see Polk far off in the distance. An interesting thing about yesterday was it was a day when the snow fleas were out. On the way I noticed that the snow looked kind of dirty but it wasn't till I looked beside a fallen log at the "dirt" that I saw it was snow fleas. They come out in droves on certain days and hop all over the snow. By the time we were starting back at 4 pm they were all gone back into the snow again.

Today Candy and I went out to "Window Trail" over the Allegheny River at the Kennerdell Tract. Which is another place I love to go. Sunday's hike was only 4.5 miles but it felt much longer - I got to feeling so exhausted and sick. Maybe I was coming down with something - or maybe it was the chocolate chip mint milkshake that I had on the way home that made me sick. Came home and went to bed and slept 12 hours. I got up this morning feeling much better and the 6.5 mile hike today felt good.

Pictures HERE )

Sometimes it seems like all I write about are these outings. I do love them. I love seeing things in nature. I love taking photos too. When staying home there seems to be nothing much to say or write about.

Tonight: watching Rectify (end of season 3) - now we will have to wait who knows how long to see what happens next.

I made a big pot of red lentil soup tonight and invited the vegans next door to come over for supper. After we ate I showed them the laser light machine I got. It shines red and green lights that move in patterns - you could shine the lights on the outside of your house or inside your house on the ceiling. Before Christmas they had them for $50 at Joanne's but the last time I went in there they were down to $15 so I got one. I shine it on the ceiling in the living room. Andy doesn't know what to do and tries to leap up and get the lights off the ceiling. Funny.
summersgate: (eggshells)
P1040064-snow-patterns
Snow patterns.

It was a big hike (almost 6 miles) and we were very tired and sore footed afterwards - down a huge (to me) mountainside and then back up again - but it was very worth it - beautiful snow falling with some sun breaking through now and then. I used the pin hole setting on the camera again. Many, many photos HERE )

Afterwards on the way home we had a late lunch at Taylor's Pub. Hot coffee, fish sandwich without the bun and french fries. The waiter was someone that Candy's sons had grown up with - it was nice to hear how much he liked their family.
summersgate: (eggshells)
I'm just annoyed that it seems like to keep our president and government from doing stupid things we are going to have to get out and march and protest about everything now. Though I haven't marched or protested anything yet - I just talk about these things with my friends and family who are like minded and concerned too. I want to live my life in peace and let the government take care of itself - that's why I vote - to have people that I respect take care of all the people in our country, our land and our relationship with the rest of the world. Now it seems that we might have to personally go out and protest the government's decisions to have things go properly. I spend time every morning meditating just so I can have a serene mind - getting mad every day about my government is counter-productive.

Onto other thoughts...

map-joy-1-30-17-pink
The pink line.

Going to hike with Candy today. Try a trail that we have never been on at the Kennerdell Tract of the Clear Creek Forest. It's called the Dennison Run trail. I'm imagining it will take us over flat land for about 2 miles before it descends down into Dennison Run (where we have been before). Dennison Run has a nice pathway with lots of little foot bridges crossing the creek till it comes to the Allegheny River, then you can climb back up the mountain to the Kennerdell Lookout. From the looks of the map it might be about a 5 mile hike. Afterwards we are going to eat out somewhere - make a big day of it. I'm going to dress warmer today than I did yesterday and put on water-resistant pants too. A few days ago while exploring down back with Rossy when climbing over rocks I strained a ligament in my groin - that is still bothering me - so I hope today goes okay - going to take a stronger walking stick.

Still snowing - it's going to be a cold but quietly beautiful day.
summersgate: (eggshells)
IMG_7438-mossy-lumpy-rock
A mossy, lumpy rock - probably a fragment from an old foundation.

Even though it has been raining most the time lately the weather favored Jan and me with dryness and even a little sun while we hiked around McKeever Environmental Center today. We decided to take the "pioneer" trail - something neither one of us had been on for a very long time - it's not very well marked and you feel like a pioneer a lot of the time. They haven't bothered to clear it of fallen branches and trees so it is turning back into random woods, and it is marked in dark blue paint - another thing that makes it hard to find. More HERE )
summersgate: (eggshells)
Candy and I did walk today. It was only sprinkling on the way out and on the way back the drizzle felt good as I was getting overheated climbing back up the hill from seeing the Bullion Furnace. This is in the Clear Creek State Forest Kennerdell Tract a couple miles from the Kennerdell Lookout that we have been to many times before.

IMG_7406-tree-with-legs
I liked this tree that seemed to have multiple legs. More HERE )
summersgate: (eggshells)
P1030981-official-groundhog
Official groundhog souvenir shop. Took this photo as we were driving through town.

Dave's brother has had a hunting camp near Punxsutawney for about 25 years but he finally gave up on it this year and sold it. He just didn't spend enough time there anymore and the mice and porcupines were taking it over. Dave wanted to see it one last time so we drove over there today. I had never been there so hadn't seen it in its better days but Dave related a lot of stories about when his brothers, the nephews, his dad and Johnny had gone there for buck season over the years. Pictures )
summersgate: (eggshells)
1-16-17-i'd-like-to-do-art
I'd like to do art in the morning but lately I just feel empty.

Yesterday Dave and I took Andy for a walk on the North Country Trail near Route 66. We had walked it from one direction last summer but never got to this point, and then we had walked from the other direction and not got there either so we thought if we walked in from a closer parking area it might be easier to reach. It was. Two photos. )
summersgate: (eggshells)
IMG_7357dave,-andy-and-johnny
Dave, Andy and Johnny.

I've heard it said that whatever you do on the first day of the new year you will be doing a lot of that year. I'm glad that we took a walk in the woods today then. We went to the Kennerdell overlook but when we got there I discovered the battery was dead in my camera. On the way back I remembered my ipod (it's battery was nearly dead with the cold too) but I put it inside my shirt to warm it up and it woke up a bit so I could get a few photos. Too bad I didn't remember it when we were at the lookout. Four HERE )

sunday

Nov. 27th, 2016 10:07 am
summersgate: (eggshells)
11-27-16-3-of-pentacles
Three of Pentacles. In this version I drew this morning (I think) the worker looks suspicious of the 2 people hanging around over her. Which is how I feel when I have a commission - like the people might not like what I am doing and I'm not sure how to please them. I have been very happy with business since the kitchen mosaic was delivered and I have no more commissions to deal with. I didn't mentioned here how the delivery of the mosaic went cause I had no photo to accompany it. My customer wouldn't consent to me placing it in it's spot behind the stove and holding it there while I got a photo. She was afraid it would fall forward and harm her stove. I couldn't convince her otherwise even though I was sure it would be fine if she just held it there against the wall with her hand. Anyway - she really did like it a lot. She said that after the holidays she would invite me for lunch and I could get a photo of it after it was installed by her contractor.

This morning Dave left the gate open to the part of the house that has my studio room and our bedroom - a place that Andy is normally not allowed to go without supervision. I slept in this morning and was laying in bed reading when I saw Andy go into my studio, which is where the cats spend most all their time. But it was perfectly quiet this morning. Usually there is a lot of cat hissing when he goes in there. Dave went to check and found Andy just quietly laying on the floor with his head between his paws being a good boy. Gives me hope. This might all work out to be a friendly cat and dog family someday. Andy has a lot of trouble with other dogs though. He wants so badly to play with them and bothers them constantly - that is what he did with Chloe and Mike's dog Jackson on Friday. If we are in the car driving and he sees a dog walking on the sidewalk he is okay, but if our car comes to a stop he goes absolutely crazy trying to get to the dog, almost in an aggressive way. Something that needs worked on for sure.

Dave found a trail online this morning that looks like it would really be fun to hike. It's called the Fred Woods Trail. It is too late in the year to go now but next spring I really want to go. It is a 4.5 mile loop that other reviewers say has splendid views from a couple of vistas and travels through some unique rock formations. Can't wait.
summersgate: (eggshells)
Early - ordered the Cat Stevens CD Footsteps in the Dark.
Walked with Candy - an adventure in the changed woods.
Lunch of leftover Pizza Hut pizza - premium veggie on thin crust and spinach Alfredo on pretzel crust. Dave and I ate dinner there last night and got the special - 2 specialty mediums for $15 - plus we got a senior discount - I think it was only about $14 in all.
Called the mosaic customer and left a message. No matter that I do think the mosaic turned out well I still have this fear that it won't be liked. FEAR. But I made my voice sound confident anyway.
Cleaned off my enameling table - wiped Skye's hair and thick dust off everything and scrubbed out old enamel from the spoons. Before and After. )
Took a nap in the slippy sleeping bag on the bed in my studio. Wonderful dreams that I can't remember now.
Woke up to a phone call from Berdella. Her oldest sister died over the weekend. Sad.
Dave came home with Andy. They got a pheasant but he left it in town for one of his friends to clean and eat.
Dinner - boiled chestnuts, smoked trout (from Dave's friend that he gave the pheasant to), coffee with sweet vanilla creamer.
Opened the mail - I had ordered 5 CDs of Joni Mitchell and the first arrived today. Listening to Song to a Seagull.
Just now - ordered a 5 CD boxed set by Judy Collins - 5 albums for $10! I want to get all the music back again that I once loved.
Plans for the evening: clean some copper and silver shapes to enamel on and then watch some Longmire with Dave.

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