Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The Ant and the Grasshopper

I am sure you all remember the ant and the grasshopper story that was told to you when you were young. Well, I can say that I am an ant. We heat our home with a wood stove. I am grateful for this considering the price of heating oil now. Since, we have around three acres we have enough wood to do this without buying any. But we have to cut, spit and stack the wood. Here are pictures of Jim and I being the ant. The beginning of the pile of wood to split. Jim through out the fall of last year cut down several trees out in the woods. Now we need to bring them to the wood shed to split and stack. We still had some wood left over from last year so we do have a head start of this next year. The end of day one. I hauled most of this wood, while Jim cut down some more trees. Some of the pieces of trees where to big and Jim had to split them before hauling them out. I had to try my hand at splitting them. Jim started it for me so I could have a better chance at splitting it but still no love. So I will leave the splitting to him and I will do the hauling. The end of day two. We have still about seven more days of hauling and then it will be time to split and stack. It all needs to be done by the middle of July so that it will be dry by next winter. It is a lot of work but I will enjoy being warm when it snows outside. I will keep you posted on our progress and the end result.

Block Island

We went to another island called Block Island. There is a hotel there named the Spring House Hotel, that Jim ran for a season for the bankruptcy court before he auctioned it off and he wanted to show it to me along with the island. We had to take a ferry ride to the island. It is off the cost of Rhode Island near Long Island NY.

This is the down town part of the island. We rented bicycles to ride around the island. It was great fun and I enjoyed seeing the sights and eating at the places that Jim once enjoyed with his children.The buildings with the red roofs are the hotel that he and his children ran for the summer season. Jim loves telling the story about how the staff (about 20 people)were so rude to him when he first came and when he told them to knock it off. They said "what are you going to do fire all of us?" and of course, Jim being Jim, he said Yes!! and did. Each and every one of them. Then he called Melissa, Jimmy and got them with their friends to come and work along with John, Laura, and Ben. Twenty plus people showed up the next day. They all worked and lived in the hotel for the entire summer. This is us outside of the hotel. The chairs are original from the time that the hotel first opened. The inside was so neat with all of the original furniture and bar area. We stayed here for a while before going on to the lighthouse and the beach. Us outside of the light house, the beach is right behind us. It was a beautiful day not to hot and not to cold.This is the light house. About ten years ago they moved it back from the cliffs because of erosion. They didn't take it apart they just jacked it up and moved it. That was really interesting. After riding up lots of hills and feeling like my legs were going to fall off we reached the beach but to get to it you had to descend the stairs. I thought that this is okay but I wasn't sure about coming back up. Jim assured me that it would be worth it to be at the beach. Jim immediately ran into the water diving into the waves and loving every minute of it. He looked like a little kid body surfing. I on the other hand went out to touch the water and found it too cold for my taste and just as a wave hit my feet I turned around and ran. After a long day of bike riding, and swimming in the ocean it was time to go home. While on the ferry we both fell asleep on the bench. We stopped at Jimmy's home for a belated Father's Day dinner. Melissa was there with the kids. It was a great day.


Living out in the rural area you find that you see a menagerie of animals. Starting with the chickens and the dog that is usually around everyday. But lately we have seen several other animals. Ones that we didn't get pictures of are a beaver heading for the river, a family of skunks crossing the on ramp to the freeway, a raccoon just off our road, a pair of vultures, a donkey walking down the street and a snake in the grass that I stepped on with my bare feet. We had a picture of a bald eagle in our tree but I couldn't find it right now. Following are the animals that I did get pictures of. I have yet to see a black bear but Jim promises that I will some day.

We have a dairy down the road that makes the best ice cream and has bunnies, cows and pigs to pet. This is not a real cow but it was fun to be this close without the smell.This is Miss Piggy she wanted my ice cream I wasn't willing to share it with her. She really stinks and I didn't enjoy her touching me at all. In fact I was watching Jim take the picture and she came up and touched my arm it startled me and I screamed.

This is our Humming bird feeder. Jim says that by the end of summer they will be so fat that they can hardly fly. There are two of them a male and female. It is so fun to watch the come and eat. For those of you that would like the recipe for the humming bird juice it is 1 C H2O to 1/3 C of sugar.Every year for the past four years Jim has walked out of his front door and found a female snapping turtle laying her eggs. This year it looks like a different one but still we were walking out of the house and there she was. I loved the spinney tail. Jim tried to move her so she would not lay the eggs in the middle of the driveway she wasn't really happy with him. Notice how her mouth is open and she is ready to bite anything that will come close to it. As we were leaving our home the other day we saw a police car with its lights going and the officer out side of the car. Then we looked a little closer and here came a cow walking down the road. Maybe it was going to fast or slow and the cop was trying to stop it. ;) The last animal that we saw and took a picture of is a baby porcupine. The mom was to fast crossing the road to get her picture but the baby was slow enough to get it just before it went into the woods. I am sure the before the summer is over I will find several more animals. We hear in the woods by our home moose, fisher cats, and bears. It is so fun to be here were nature is so close.