holiday week-end coming

labor day is coming. it will be a 3 day week end for many. i have been retired for a few years now. every week end is a 3 day week end for me.  we have a number of family activities planned. i like the get togethers we are able to have because of holidays.

it is time for the Sparks flea market. it is held every spring and fall.  i havent been to it in over a year and a half. i missed it because of covid. i didnt go after my surgery this spring either. a guy i went to mayetta high school with usually goes to the same flea markets i go to. i seen him at an auction and he said he hadnt seen me around.

we will go on thursday, the first day. there are around 500 dealers that set up. i never know what i am looking for until i see it. i know i cant pass up music cds. i look for songs i dont have in my playlists. i also look for wooden bowls for indian dice sets. i look for things i can use in my art work too.

it takes a good part of the day to get thru all the stands. its a good thing they have plenty of food stands. i used to like to get the smoked turkey legs from one stand. they havent been making them the past few years though. i will find lunch at another stand. i have to get a fresh squeezed lemonade or a cold drink after all the walking.

we are planning another family camping trip. everyone had a good time when we camped at lake clinton. we had adjoining campsites. we were able to share a common area to gather in. we ate our meals together and sat around the campfire.

we want to get adjoining campsites again. we will bring our fishing poles. we all tried fishing last time. no one caught anything but it was fun. maybe this time we will catch some fish. we would cook them over the fire.

we have tickets to K U’s first football game of the season on friday. i have been a fan of KU for decades. i dont know how many football and basketball games i have gone to over the years. i thought it would be nice to take the grandsons to a game. we went to a football game before but we left early. the boys were smaller and it was a real hot day. this game is a night game.

i only have two more sessions of cardiac rehab left. there is no doubt in my mind that i am stronger than when i started.  i have been walking at home lately. one of my goals was to walk two miles like i used to before surgery. i met that goal. one week i walked 2 miles on 3 different days. i also walked 3 miles in rehab. nine miles in one week is good.

gotta do my chores.

went to the big city

my sun dried cherry tomatoes are almost finished. they have been drying for a few days now. maybe one more day in the sun and that will be it. i have picked twice as many cherry tomatoes since then. i will dice them up and dry them on half of that same screen. no such thing as having too many sun dried tomatoes. 

we picked 5 flats of tomatoes from our garden. we will let them ripen a few more days. then we will can them. we got about two gallons out of the first 4 flats we had. we have more tomatoes still on the vine. we should get another batch to can soon.

we went to kansas city early this morning to watch andrew play soccer. the game was held a short distance from legends mall. we had fun watching the game. we headed to the mall to have lunch afterward. we ate at a bbq place. the boys wanted to go there because it had a game arcade. they played games before and after we ate.

i had half a rack of bbq ribs. i mean can you go to kansas city and not eat bbq? well i do sometimes when i go to the same mall. i usually like to go to this cajun place that serves blackened catfish and gumbo. this time i had ribs at the bbq place instead. they were good ribs.

after we ate we went to the kansas city farmers market. there arent as many stalls open on sundays as there are on saturday. we still found some good bargains since it was getting near closing time. not many want to pack everything up to take home.

i bought some hatch peppers. the guy said $5 for half a peck. i thought that was a good deal as i walked away. i went back and bought another half a peck. he was probably wanting to get rid of them since he wont keep them til next saturday.

i have some anaheim peppers growing here that i will pick. i will mix the two together when i roast them. if i gotta roast them anyway i might as well have a bunch roasting at the same time. i will scrape the skin off and diced them up. then i will bag them up as green chiles. we gotta have enough to cook with all year long.

i also bought a bunch of bell peppers. i dice them up and put them in freezer bags. we also use them for seasonings when we cook some things. i thought i had bell peppers growing. i went to check and seen that i just had anaheims, habaneros and jalapenos. i will get some hot sauce made with those peppers.

we also bought a dozen ears of corn to roast. not many places selling them now. i like to eat corn on the cob, especially with the amish butter we buy. it really tastes good.

i am ready for my last week of rehab. i will be done. yay.

drying and canning tomatoes

our cherry tomatoes are drying. we cut them in half and spread them onto the drying screens. they are drying good in this heat. more are ripening on the vine. we will dry them too. these cherry tomatoes are real sweet. sun dried tomatoes have a more intense flavor when they are used. we will cook with them in soups, stews and chilis.

our new pups tore into two of my drying screens. those pups are a little too rambunctious.  they kinda get into things they shouldnt. they will learn. it is our job to train them to behave. they will be good guard dogs.

i will repair the screens with screen i have left. i am glad i bought a whole roll of screen. i bought it as used even though it hadnt been used at all. it is aluminum screening. it is tougher than that cloth kind. i want screens that will last. i dry corn and other things every year.

mary is canning the 4 flats of tomatoes we have. i ate a couple of the ones we grew. they tasted real good. we will have more of them too. more of them are ripening on the vine also. tomatoes are cheaper to buy now. we may buy some so we have plenty to can.

we already have some salsa canned. after we can these tomatoes i want to can hot sauce to last me the whole year. my hot peppers are slowly coming along. i have some habaneros in the freezer left from last year if i dont have enough.

i have to pick the rest of the corn in the field. i will use it for seed corn. i will also parch some and grind it up to make kakasuwabo. i have some indian beans that are growing on the corn stalks. i will pick what i get from them when they are ready.

my gardening is pretty much over. i only have my tomatoes, peppers and indian beans still growing. everything else is finished. i still have to build my new grow boxes. i have the lumber mary bought at a garage sale. potting soil and burr composting is on sale. i will be able to save a few bucks by filling the grow boxes now.

i go to cardiac rehab today. after that i will only have 3 more sessions.  i will continue walking and lifting weights at home. i have a tread mill to use when weather wont let me walk outside. i definitely feel stronger than i did before i started rehab. i know it was good for me.

i will start making roaches again. i havent made any since before my heart surgery. that was 4 months ago. there arent many pow wows going this year anyway. i will be able to stock pile a bunch of roaches for next year. i will have lotsa time to get more completed by next pow wow season.

this week end i will go see andrew play soccer. gotta do my chores now.

getting more heat

it will be hot again today. temps will be in the high 90s but the heat index will make it feel hotter than that. as if we really need to hear that. my tomatoes are ripening. i dont want to lose them. i  turned the faucet of the rain barrel on and let it go overnight. i irrigate my tomatoes to help them withstand this heat.

i have a coupla cherry tomato bushes.  i like to eat fresh cherry tomatoes. the ones i have this year are real sweet. i have been eating plenty of them.  they make a good snack when i want something sweet. i gotta stay away from junk food. eating healthy is hard to do.

i will dry some of my ripe cherry tomatoes. i have two paper plates full. it looks like i will get much more. i will cut them in half and spread them out on my drying screens. it wont take long for them to dry in this heat.  i have dried them before because i had so many and i wanted to save them. i used the dried tomatoes in soups.

we had to go to town. we needed to get more food for our new pups and our old dog. we filled up our water bottles for our water cooler too. we use it for drinking water and to make coffee and tea. it tastes better than tap water even though some say it dont matter. it does to me.

i dont know why but puppy chow cost more than  dog food. something to do with puppies needing nutrients to grow. yeah. i get much more for less when i buy food for my dog. i will keep both supplied. i take good care of my dogs so they will be loyal to me. they already are barking at things. they will make good guard dogs for our chickens.

we stopped to get fresh fruit at a stand. i was looking at these boxes of tomatoes. they were $3 a flat because they had slight imperfections. other than that they were good tomatoes.  i took a box of them. the old guy said at that price you might as well get another one. i said yeah we will can them. he agreed they would be good for canning.

i will add these two flats of tomatoes to the two flats i have from my garden. we already canned some salsa. next we will can tomatoes. then some hot sauce even though i have a few jars left.

they are talking about a booster shot for covid. i had two shots of moderna vaccine. when they have the booster for it i probably will get one. i like to play it safe. i survived a rough life of drinking, drugging and violence. i also made it thru open heart surgery. i want to have more years with my children and grand children.

i got chores to do before heading out to cardiac rehab.

no road time

we didnt go on our planned short road trip. thats why i like the occasional spur of the moment trips. something can come up that prevents planned trips.

andrew has been wanting to practice with a bow and arrow. he mentioned that a few times. he had a nerf one  a while back that he played with. this weekend his dad bought him a plastic toy one. he played with it and had fun for a day.

then he was eyeing a coupla bows i had hanging in the house. he said he wanted to try one of them. i told him the pull might be too much for him. he tried one and kinda got it. i said i had another smaller bow with a coupla wooden arrows outside.  i bought it at a garage sale for four bucks. he grabbed it as soon as he seen it.

i had a bag of straw i got for mulching, dog bedding and the chicken laying boxes. i set it up on the lawn. andrew used it to practice on. wasnt too long and he was hitting it regularly. i went inside and got a bullseye target we had on the wall. they used it for their nerf guns. i taped it to the straw bale. he started hitting it until it finally got tore up.

one of the wood arrows got caught up in a tree. the other cracked. i gave him 3 aluminum arrows. they will last longer than the wooden ones. he used them to practice with. misho sure indulges that kid.

i only have 5 more sessions of cardiac rehab. the nurses have been good at what they do. they kept raising the bar and i would do it. now i am back to doing what i did before my surgery. mary and i walked 2 miles three times last week. that is the least i will have to do after rehab is done.  i am in shape to do that now.

i probably will continue to do the weight sets i did at rehab. i used dumbbells to do sets of 8 different lifts. one nurse said the routine was done for a reason. it was to work out the whole upper core of my body. the bike and treadmill worked out my legs. i can feel that i have tone in my body again. i say my rehab was a success.

i picked a big paper plate full of cherry tomatoes yesterday. they will ripen up fully in a day or so. i already had some that are ripe. now i have enough to dry. i will cut them in half and spread them out on a drying screen. it will be in the 90s all week. they should be dry in no time.

i also picked some big tomatoes. they arent fully ripe but i picked them anyway.  i lost some tomatoes because critters got to them. i am picking ones that are turning color so they will ripen inside. i have two flats of them now. they will be canned. i got to save them use later.

gotta do chores.

went to topeekie

i do get off the rez now and then. i even ordered a custom printed hat. it will say “straight off the rez”. sometimes people look at country indians like me and think that. so as an act of sarcasm i ordered the hat. i should be getting it soon. cant wait to wear it.

this morning i went to topeekie to get an oil change. usuallly my son joe will change our oil. i had to do this because my ‘maintenance required soon’ light on the dash board came on. no big deal but i am gonna cop some road time this weekend.

i went to wal marks to get it done. i didnt want the transmission flush, new air filters etc that other places try to con me into. i just wanted an oil change. yeah i know the air filter is dirty. that is the nature of it. it gets dirty but i dont wanna pay three times what a new one costs. got my oil changed for half of what other places charge. now i can cruise.

i am going to see my sister this weekend. she is undergoing chemo. i want to show her support in what she is going thru. i also want to see my nieces. i will be near the town where i went to boarding school. i will probably check the place out. for years i avoided it. i went there once with my mother. after that i went back a coupla times.

i am hoping that i get no flash backs cruising thru the boarding school i attended in my distant youth. boarding schools have been in the news lately. soon they wont make the news but i wont forget about that experience. i dont need to read or hear about how it was.

i couldnt figure out how to down load any of my playlists to my iphone. i googled it and none of what some internet sites said worked for me. i finally found one that was close. i messed with it until i got all my playlists into my phone. now i have something besides the one playlist i had to jam to while i am on the road.

we did clean 3 chickens the other day. it didnt take long. we have them all bagged up and in the freezer now. we will use the bags of chicken for several meals. i bought a coupla bags of egg noodles from the amish town we go to. it is good in chicken soup.  i also wanna make some chicken broth so we can make some egg drop soup.

last evening i fired up the riding mower. i mowed the yard while it was cooler. that beats tryna to do it when its hot. i dont know how many times i mowed this year. we had more moisture this year than in several years. it made the grass grow. i had to keep up with it.

gotta get busy with my chores.

gonna clean chickens today

we have been busy most of the spring and early summer. now we have a chance to clean a few chickens. the barred rock rooster for sure. he is a good looking rooster but the rhode island red is the dominant one. the red wont let the barred rock eat anywhere close. i prefer to have only one rooster.

i also plan on cleaning three hens that have been broody. they occupy the laying boxes and dont let others lay eggs. i have 15 boxes but they prefer the 5 closest to the ground. our egg production is down slightly because of this. these hens will be like that again next year. that means it is time to make soup with them.

my feed bill should go down a little bit. not much but it will be a savings. i use the money we get from selling our surplus eggs to buy feed. i like taking care of chickens. i have done that for decades.

i made a fire outside in the fire ring. i used corn husks and cobs to start the fire. when we dried indian corn i told the others to save them because they are good fire starters. i put a grate over the ring to hold a big pot which i filled with water. it is heating up now.

after the chickens are deader than disco we will dip them into the hot water. we will then pluck the feathers off. we can do that chore without a machine. a chicken plucker costs more than i am wanting to pay.  its not about the easy way with us.

it wont take us long to clean 4 chickens. we have done that enough times. we will bag up the thighs and drumsticks in bags, breasts in anothers and the rest in other bags. most likely we will use the backs, necks and wings to make chicken broth. i will make my tortilla soup with that broth. we will make other soups and wild rice with that broth.

we are starting early because we dont wanna be working outside when it warms up. the temps wont get into the 90s though. we have to get done before it gets to 88 degrees. we will be done before that and before the grand daughters get off the school bus. when they get bigger they will have to help do these chores.

my cherry tomatoes are ripening. i have been picking them. they are sweet. i eat them for a healthy snack. as i get more i will cut them in half and dry them on my drying screens. they will be used in soups later this fall and winter. buying dried tomatoes from the store is costly but done for nothing here.

i have been irrigating my other tomatoes from the rain barrels. they all have fruit on the vine. i am hoping for enough to can tomatoes, hot sauce and spaghetti sauce. mary is gonna try to make some ketchup this year. we are always trying some thing new to us.

gotta get busy.

went camping

we had a family camping trip this week end. my son joe booked us two camp sites at clinton lake. we had to be on the south side of the lake to get adjoining sites.  it would be the first time we were on that side of the lake. 

we took old highway 40 to get to the camp ground. we passed thru the town of stull. urban legend has it that there is a ‘gateway to hell’ in the cemetery there. we didnt pass by it or if we did we hadnt noticed. at any rate we made it to our camp ground. otherwise we would have had to take a longer route to get there. 

we set up our tents. we filled the air mattresses and made up our beds for the night. its a good thing joe brought his steel fire pit. our site had no place for a fire. we went to the store in Clinton a few miles away to get camp wood.   camping isnt complete without a camp fire to sit around and talk.

 we wanted adjoining sites so we could share a cooking, eating and gathering area. we brought a folding table we set next to the single picnic table we had. we roasted hot dogs on the fire for supper. andrew made some ‘smores but no one else did. after eating supper we went down to the lake shore to get in some fishing.

we went back to the clinton store to buy bait. we had enough fishing poles for all the grand kids to use and a couple for the adults. nobody caught any fish. it didnt matter we all had fun. it was the first time i have been fishing in some time. we sat around the fire after we got back from fishing.

our camp site had a charcoal pit with grates for cooking.  we used it to cook our breakfast of eggs, bacon and hash browns.  i made a small wood fire to make cowboy coffee. we all agreed breakfast and coffee sure tasted good.

after breakfast, andrew had a soccer game at ten o clock. his dad took him to the game. the rest of us went to the beach where swimming was allowed. i was paranoid about taking off my t shirt. i thought some one might think ‘hey look at the fat guy’. but the response probably would have been ‘which one’.  nobody noticed.

we had sunscreen, so i used some. i aint suppose to get much sun on the scar i have from my open heart surgery. something about getting sunburned. i caught some rays while sitting on the beach. i also went into the lake a coupla times. it wouldnt seem right to go to the lake and not swim.

we all had fun swimming. the grand daughters had little life jackets on. they were shy at first but got into playing in the water. they floated with the waves in their life jackets.

we went home after swimming. it was a great week end.

camping trip

we had 4 grand kids staying with us this week. its been fun. the girls go home after their parents get off work.  they will start school next week. the boys dont have school this week so they are spending the week.

yesterday i was checking out my tomatoes as mary and i were on our 2 mile walk. i seen some red showing. i picked a coupla cherry tomatoes. they sure tasted good. the best cherry tomatoes i had in some time. they were sweet. next week the temps will be in the 80s. i may get more ripe tomatoes.

i have been watering the tomatoes in last years corn field. i am using the rain water i have in barrels on the corners of our house. that rain water is better than the tap water we get.  the rain we got last night filled a coupla them back up.

my work at cardiac rehab and working around the house is paying off. my primary care doctor told me the results of last weeks lab tests. my A1C is 6.8. that is the lowest it has been in some time. my cholesterol is good. after hearing that i missed the rest of the results but they were all good. i felt good knowing the work i put in is paying off.

i havent been fishing at all. i wanted to go for some time. it just never happened, especially after my surgery. i am ready to go. i got the fishing poles we have around here ready. i have 7 that are in working order. a few are fishing poles for the grand kids.

our family is going on a camping trip. we chose clinton lake by lawrence as the camp ground where we will set up our tents. we have two adjoining spots. it will be me and mary, two of our sons, a daughter in law and 4 grand kids. we wanted to go before the kids go back to school. i know they will have fun.

the camp ground people said we cant bring our own wood. we will have to buy it from a local store. what is camping with out a camp fire going. naturally the kids will have to have ‘smores and hot dogs over the fire. the next day we will cook breakfast. we are taking our fresh eggs, bacon and hash browns. we will  have cowboy coffee made over the fire. i always liked that kind of coffee.

i will take our air mattress, misho aint roughing it that much. once i slept on an air mattress i have to use one every time i camp. it isnt suppose to be hot at night. temps will get in the 60s and 70s at night time. we will sleep comfortable.

i will take my nikon camera to get some pictures of our family camp out. we will load up the fishing poles. its  more for the kids to have fun but i will try it too. i havent caught a fish in a long time.

i have cardiac rehab again today. i kinda look forward to the workout. it has made me stronger.

canned some salsa

i intended to pick the rest of our corn yesterday. i woke up to the sound of thunder and rain. i was thankful for that. we still have peppers, green beans,  tomatoes, indian beans and corn growing. they need the rain. it rained off and on. i didnt get out to pick the corn. it will have to wait. it will be hot and we have chances for showers the next few days.

i have picked some tomatoes from my grow boxes. i also bought some at farmers stands. we used those tomatoes and the salsa mix i bought at jamesport.  mary canned 8 pints of hot salsa. i tried it and it sure tasted good. nothing beats home made salsa. we will make more when our tomatoes ripen.

i checked out my green beans. it looks like i may get another crop. we will can what ever we get. we have to can because we filled our freezer up.   we try to preserve natural foods like fruits, veggies, wild game and berries. we can it, freeze it or dry it. i often tell people i aint totally self sufficient but i can eat something i grew, picked, gathered or hunted all year long. that took years to achieve.

i broke out the weights at home. the dumbbells any way. when i was at cardiac rehab on monday, one of the nurses asked if i was lifting weights at home. i answered no. then i wondered why the hell not. i dont mean over do it. i can do the same exercises i do at cardiac rehab. they give me a workout. i had to take it easy after my surgery. my muscles lost their tone. now i have to work to get it back.

the blood people have been after me. there is a shortage of blood donors and they need my  O positive blood. one of the nurses told me i should wait for 3 months after my surgery to donate. i passed that and asked if it was okay to donate now. another nurse got the number of the blood donor people. i am suppose to call them to make sure. i will do that. i havent gave my red blood cells for some time now.

i have an appointment with my primary care doctor today at our clinic. i had my lab work done last week. today we go over my meds to see if i need to increase or decrease them. next week i meet with the heart doctor. it is a follow up to the cardiac rehab i have been doing for the past coupla months. i think i have been working hard at my rehab.

i havent gotten back to roach making yet. i have been going to cardiac rehab. i only have a few more weeks of that. once i completed it i will get back to making roaches. i think artwork will keep my busy. i have plenty of chores around here to keep me busy also.

gotta get going.