Tuesday, September 22, 2020
Friday, September 11, 2020
Last Saturday we took a trip to Conner Prairie, it is about a two hour drive away and located on the north-east side of Indianapolis. My last visit to Conner Prairie was about twenty years ago, it was very enjoyable and I was excited to go again. I have to say it was a pretty disappointing visit this time around. We were blessed with beautiful weather so that was a plus, pretty much the only plus. The price of admission was quite expensive, and probably should be reduced while Covid 19 restrictions are in place.
A nice playground was added at some point since my last visit and the boys enjoyed burning off some energy after being cooped up in the car for a while. An added attraction was a giant tethered hot air balloon, it looked like fun if you liked heights, but I was unsure what it had to do with the early 1800's and seemed more of a way to extract money from visitors.
We toured the Conner farm house, built in 1823, due to Covid we were unable to go upstairs and could only peek through the doorway of each of the two rooms downstairs. We meandered on to Prairie Town, a representation of a small community in 1836, again most of the buildings were either roped off so we could only peek through a doorway, or closed. There were very few "in character" people wandering around.
The Animal Encounter was a joke! We had to wait in a socially distanced queue and finally were allowed into the barn, to see a geriatric goat, a goat kid, and a crate of chicks placed so far away from where we were allowed to stand we really couldn't see them. I believe the people working were embarrassed by the lack of animals and apologized and said there are some sheep but they were at the Vet that day getting a check up.
Our trek continued to the Tree Top Trail, another trendy feature added to "enhance" the visit, again I asked myself what on earth does this giant tree house, jungle gym have to do with the telling of life in 1800's Indiana.
Then over the covered bridge, this was the Civil War exhibit and it consisted of a few banners with brief statements about the Civil War and then on the other side of the bridge we "arrived" into the late 1800's, one building was open so we could peek through a door, and the very large, grand, Victorian farm house was closed.
I really feel the price of admission, $57 for myself and three boys, was a rip off. Surely over Labor Day weekend a full staff should be on hand, exhibits open, and plenty of animals to encounter. The whole experience was really rather lame and certainly not worth the four hour round trip of driving and the cost of admission. I surely hope Covid restrictions are to blame for the poor visitor experience and that this is not "business as usual" for Conner Prairie.
Sunday, September 6, 2020
Last Sunday evening we drove to Witmer Lake, near Wolcottville Indiana to see our daughter Emily and her husband Joe be baptized. It was an absolutely beautiful late summer evening and a lovely way to finish the weekend.
I made vegan bake beans from scratch. I soaked navy beans overnight. The next morning I drained and rinsed the beans and popped them back into the pan with a quart of water, a chopped sweet onion, chopped garlic, salt, a generous glop of molasses, a shot of worcestershire sauce and a squirt of ketchup. I put the burner on low and let the beans simmer for several hours. Once done I had a scoop of beans for lunch and divided the rest up into generous half cup servings. I put the scoops of beans into a cup cake pan and put them in the freezer. The next day I popped all the frozen lumps of beans out of the pan and put them into a large freezer bag. Now when I want some beans I just pull out a "lump" and have a perfect serving to enjoy.
Last Sunday I took a lovely fourteen mile bike ride, the weather was perfect, sunshine, light breeze, comfortable temperature, awesomeness. I love my bike and many years ago named her Delores. My mom bought Dolores for me as a birthday gift about twenty five years ago, we went to a specialty bicycle shop, The Cycle Path, (sadly it is no longer in business) and I was instructed to select a good bicycle. I chose Delores, she was described as a road bike, and perfect for everyday riding, and she has certainly proven to be just that.
Sunday, August 30, 2020
August is a big month for birthdays in our family. We start the month with three birthdays all on the same day, August 8. My husband, our son Ben, and our grandson Peter all share a birthday, our daughter-in-law Taylor follows up on the August 10, and our son-in-law on the 14th. Then a brief reprieve until the August 26 then our grandson Henry celebrates his birthday, and the following day, the 27th, is my Mom's birthday. Our youngest grandson Harrison just squeaked by the August madness and made September his very own birthday month, he will be one on September 6. It is a fun month of celebrations. And here are some pictures of all the birthday celebrants.
Thursday, August 27, 2020
I needed canning jar lids and bands because of the amount of ripe tomatoes we have at this time, I can only eat so many tomatoes by myself! I headed out to the garden and pretty soon had a large bowl piled high with tomatoes. Our grandson Peter, who is six, was very, very interested in the whole process of canning tomatoes. It was a nice activity and didn't take too long as I only had one canner load to process. I finished with eight pints of tomatoes. I should have at least one, possibly two more batches to do.
Back in the day, we would plant around fifty tomato plants and it would be quite a chore canning them all, a large bowl of tomatoes is much less daunting then several five gallon buckets stacked high with tomatoes.
For me there is something very satisfying about jars of freshly canned produce cooling on the counter.
Sunday, August 23, 2020
As all weeks seem to do, this past one flew by. I am now officially working from home permanently and I really like it. As our office only has 9 employees, all but me have worked from home since April and I only work two days a week, our building has become a ghost town. The building lease is up next month and the corporate office decided to permanently close our physical location. Almost all of the staff at offices all over the US, Europe and Australia are working from home, and have been for the best part of 2020. Our company has found that productivity has not suffered in the least, employees are happy, and travel expenses are almost non-existent since very little in person contact is taking place. I am really enjoying the experience of working from home.
Monday, August 17, 2020
This weekend our grandson Masen hung out with grandma and grandpa. On Sunday I took Masen on a bike ride, he rode about six miles, which I think is pretty good for a little guy who just turned five in July.
A very silly headline I saw while waiting in the check out lane at Walmart. "7 Ways To Calm Your Pet's Covid-19 Anxiety", Seriously!!!
Bounty from the garden. Our very first canteloupe from our garden. Some lovely cucumber from our daughter Amber's garden, and luscious tomato from our garden along with some delightful green pepper. I enjoyed some cut up veggies with a little scrambled tofu for lunch, it was perfection.
And another quilt update. I have finished the border and am pleased with how it really finishes off the quilt top. I purchased green fabric for the backing, and blue fabric to make the binding along with a king size natural cotton batting. This evening I will seam the backing together and then layer the backing, batting and top and safety pin the layers together to hold everything in place. Next step will be to make the binding and put it on. Once the binding is added I can begin hand quilting, I purchased a golden-yellow thread to quilt with.