A View From the Field








January. 2012

January 31

Gee, it's the end of January already and I haven't done a blessed thing. Oh, well.


I wrote about 5700 words last night (well, I guess that's something) and I got to bed around midnight. I slept better than I have for a couple of days, which was nice.


I'm not sure what was causing the problem, but over the weekend, my house was full of some kind of burned fuel fumes that got into my nose and really bothered me. I haven't been downstairs yet to check on the machine room, but I'm not sure how it could be fumes from there, since the wind was in the other direction. I will have to ask Ron if he's been having trouble with his furnace. Anyway, by last night, they were gone (having a house that's not air-tight does have its good points), so I didn't have to deal with that. I was suspicious because there are (or were) some strange noises coming from the machine room, but everything seems to be working all right so far, so I'm not going to push it.


Anyway, I got up around 9:00, not because I wanted to, but because I had to. I finished my triangle and decided not to try to start the next square. That turned out to be a good decision. I had an accident after breakfast and had to change my bottom clothes and clean myself up before I went off to my massage. I was a little late, but Johanna knows that sometimes happens.


She seems to be doing better, but there are still some things going on in her gut and sometime this spring she'll be having another laparoscopic investigation. That girl has really been through it in the last year.


We had a nice conversation about kale and quinoa, which I've never tried. She offered me a taste, and it's something I think I would like, so I must get myself some. Last night I got to thinking that the frozen brown rice I've been buying is sort of expensive, so I went out into the internet and discovered that freezing it is really easy, so I will be doing that one of these days. Quinoa would undoubtedly freeze just as well and it's so easy to throw it in the microwave for a couple of minutes. Brown rice is particularly bad because it takes so long to cook, but sometimes even regular rice or Royal Rice takes longer than I want to spend. Quinoa is more nutritious than rice, so it would be a good thing to get into my diet, While I'm by no means a health nut, my feeling is, if it tastes good and it's good for me, I might as well eat it...and everything else i can get my grubby mitts on.


Anyway, I felt much better after my massage, and my back didn't bother me so much. I must really take myself in hand and start doing  my exercises again.


I stopped at the post office, where my underwear had arrived, and at the store for eggs on my way home, and then I did nothing for the rest of the afternoon. I finished my surfing and before I knew it, the talking was on. Oh, well.


The weather was blah and warm. The low for temperature for the past 24 hours was 28 and the high was 34. It was above freezing for most of the day. There was very little wind. It was cloudy until near sunset, when it cleared up a bit, and the camera caught a nice bit of color at sunset. I think it's still partly cloudy, but when I went to get my dinner, Venus was shining very brightly off in the west. Blah.


So now I think I will write for a while, and I'd like to wash my hair tonight. I've been neglecting it, and I don't like what's happening to my scalp. We'll see if I do it.


I didn't see Jasmine at all today. I filled her dry food bowls tonight, and I'm sure she'll be glad about that. 


So that was another quiet day, and now it's a dark, quiet night in the field.


January 30

I wrote about 3600 words last night before I went to bed. When I went up to the north end, there was a pretty crescent moon shining brightly over Porter Island. It wasn't completely clear, though, because I watched the moon go behind some clouds before I went to sleep. I didn't sleep well again, and I'm still not sure why. I was up any number of times and I was restless when I got back to bed. Still don't know why.


I got up around 9:30, I think, and I knitted my block. That was the last block on tier 22! I have only one more tier to go, and I did part of the right hand triangle. So in a little less than a week, I'll be starting the top triangles and the edging. My goodness, this has been a long project! However, now that I'm so close, I want to finish it.


I didn't do very much today. I destroyed three envelopes trying to print an address on them, and then when I had sealed everything into it, finally, I discovered that I had the wrong address! I get so angry with these mortgage companies who change their remit addresses every year or so. If I'd sent this to the address I had, they might never know I'd paid my winter taxes! Grr.


Oh, yes, I also put the link to the Keweenaw snow report on the camera page and I updated the links page to include it, too. That took a little while.


The weather was so-so. The temperature rose steadily all day from 8 at 7:00 this morning to 28 now. There was some wind in the afternoon, from the southwest in the 15-25 mph range, and it snowed, even though it wasn't supposed to. Where would we be without our daily snow. Unfortunately, tomorrow it may rain or sleet. Not what we need!


Jasmine made me laugh last night. As soon as I turned out the light, she started talking, and the next thing I knew she was on the window seat, talking all the time. She didn't stay long, but she really loves that window seat. Evidently a lot of critters run around on the north side of the house. So even though I was there in the room with her, she had to see what was going on outside. She came upstairs briefly this morning, but I had to go to the powder room so she ducked into the cat hole until I was seated, and then she came out  again. I wouldn't say she's calming down very much, but she is getting out and about a little more.


So it was another quiet, useless day, and I will write a bit before I go up to the north end. It's a quiet night in the field, and it's warming up again, darn it.


January 29

I got the dishwasher primed, and I took my bath and cut my fingernails, and I was in bed by 10:30. I didn't sleep very well for some reason. I was up a lot and I was restless in between. I was up around 6:30, but it was still snowing, so I went back to sleep and I finally got up around 9:00. I knitted my square, got dressed, put the other sweat outfit in the wash, and did my surfing. 


And that was all.


 Marty came by around 11:30 and did a great job on my snow. There was more out there than I thought. I do worry about him shoveling, because he's not young, but he seems to be in good shape, and he didn't drop dead in my driveway.


Our blower has a cracked shaft, and Ron will take it to Marty's barn tomorrow and see what they can do about it. They're hoping it's just a matter of getting the right part and replacing it, but they won't know until they look at it. Our tractor is a bit small for the job it has to do, and it's been used a lot, so we have to live with the things that happen to it. It seems like something breaks every winter.


I went out to talk to him and move a little snow, and even though it was cold, it wasn't bad out.


The NWS was amazingly accurate about the snow warning. It was snowing on us when i went outside, but it stopped right around 1:00 and after that, we had a little sunshine. It was windy all night, with north winds in the 25-35 mph range. That has calmed down, too.

The temperature was almost steady at around 18.


So we had a nice little lake effect event, and it kept me from going to church. I wish those things would come during the week so I could get out on Sunday, but at this point, I'll take all the snow we get, whenever we get it.


Tonight, I had the last of my pork chops with the rest of my kale, and I enjoyed it, even though my nose is dripping enough that I'm not tasting very well. I must get some more kale.


Jasmine came upstairs when the sun came out, and she was sleeping in the pink chair until I walked through the great room. She just will not believe I won't bother her. Poor kitty. I don't know where she went then. I gave her some of her favorite canned food for dinner, so maybe she'll come up and eat it. Poor kitty.


I was fooling around until I started writing this, and I'm not sure whether I'll be going to bed or I'll write some more on the story. I'm tired again, and maybe another early night would be good. We'll see.


Now it's a dark and partly cloudy night in the field.


January 28

Now, this is Keweenaw winter!


I wrote around 5500 words last night, and I could have kept on. But then I went out and captured the recipe I was thinking about, and after that, I picked up a magazine. Oh, well. I know why I haven't been reading very much. When I get tired, I have a terrible time seeing ordinary sized type, especially if I don't have a bright light. I really must try to do something about some new glasses.


Anyway, I got to bed around midnight, and while I was up several times, I finally got up around 10:00. I knitted my square before I got dressed. While I was knitting, all of a sudden, there was a blizzard going on outside and a few minutes later, there was hardly any snow at all. Ah, the wonderful lake effects!


I began to get the dishwasher ready to run tonight, but I still have a lot of stuff to load into it. That was about all I did. I still don't feel very robust. I drank water today, which helped, especially keeping my throat from being scratchy, but my head is full of glop and it hurts.


The weather - oh the weather! They were right about the lake effect. It snowed and blew all day long, and it's still snowing and blowing, even more so. The temperature all day was down in the low 20s, and there was that north-northwest wind in the 20-35 mph range. The last report it at 29 mph with 38 mph gusts. It snowed most of the time, and I would look outside to see the flakes being blown horizontal across the harbor, and sometimes I could hardly see the other side of the little bay at this end.


I really wanted to go to church tomorrow, because it's a fifth Sunday, and they just might use the old service, but I'm going to bail. It's going to be cold, and it's going to snow, and I would undoubtedly be driving south before the plows got to the covered road. I'm disappointed, but that's winter in the Keweenaw. The snow warning doesn't expire until 1:00, which means it will be a nasty morning.


I didn't see Jasmine at all today, but around 7:00 this morning, I was up, and she was talking to me, and she actually got down into the bedroom before she realized where she was and ran away. What a strange little kitty she is!


Now I must decide whether to write a bit more or go up to the north end now, take my bath, and go to bed really early. That sounds good about now. I do have a few things to do, like the dishwasher, and after I take my bath, I have to cut my fingernails.


When I was young and I had pretty hands, I used to keep my fingernails quite long and polished, but eventually, when I was doing all my own typing and typing programs and other things for most of the day, it got to be too much. I couldn't keep the polish from chipping, which I think is tacky to look at, and it was very hard to type with long fingernails. Besides, I was embroidering and knitting and the nails got in my way. For the last few years, since my hands got ugly, I've kept my nails very short. They grow fast, and every two or three weeks, I have to chop them off. Then for a few days, they're too short, but they grow. Now it' time to chop again. It's getting hard to type. So that's the chore for tonight. I still, after all these years, have a hard time cutting the nails on my right hand, because my left hand just doesn't want to do that, And they're thick and brittle enough that I have to cut them when they're wet.


So that was another nothing day. Now it's a dark, cold, windy and snowy night in the field and it's time to hunker down under the covers for a long winter's nap.


January 27

I wrote a little over 3600 words last night, but then I googled kale and that meant more reading, so it was around midnight when I got to bed. I had kind of an up and down night. I slept, but I was up a lot, and I had some strange dreams. I finally got up around 10:00, and my goodness, the sky was clear and it was sunny! So pretty, and so unlike a normal winter. I did my square, and now I have only eight left to do.


Anyway, kale is a wonder food. According to one article I read, it was pushed during World War II to offset some of the effects of food rationing (which I remember, and I still have some ration coupons my mother saves). Well, that wasn't the case where I grew up. My mother was into nutrition even then, and we never ate kale. In fact, what I had last night was the first time in my life I've ever eaten it. My maternal grandparents were mostly or completely German, and even though the article said Germans at it in the winter, but my family never did. It does have some things in it that may not be good for people prone to kidney stones, but the opinion was that the good things outweigh any negatives. 


Cooking kale is a problem. Some recipes say to steam or braise it for 5 to 10 minutes, and other recipes say to boil it for 20 minutes or longer. My background says the less you cook a veggie like that, the more nutrients you preserve, so I'll continue to cook it for just a few minutes.


I learned one other thing , almost as an aside, which really interested me. One site said that all veggies, including onions, garlic and kale, should be cut and let rest for at least 5 minutes, because that causes some nutrients to develop. I've never heard that before, and I'm not sure I believe it. It doesn't matter much, because I tend to chop my veggies at least 5 minutes before I start to cook them. If that makes them more nutritious, good.


So that was an interesting investigation. I want to go back, because there was a recipe that interested me that I think I want to print out.


Anyway, I didn't do anything today except completely unload the dishwasher. I should wash dishes tonight, but I will have to completely load the dishwasher in order to do that, so it may not happen. I should have had enough sleep, but I don't feel like it.


The weather was warm and almost clear until about 4:30, when it clouded up. The temperature got up to 37 for a couple of hours this afternoon. It was quite windy, with north to northwest winds in the 25-35 mph range. It's calming down some now, but the lake was singing quietly all day. it was probably nice out, and I should have gone, but I didn't.


Jasmine spent the afternoon upstairs, I think, and I think she was sleeping in the pink chair until I walked by the second time, when she jumped down and got ready to run under the chair. Poor Jasmine. Besides her other problems, she apparently can't figure out what I'm going to do next. However, I was glad that she got to sleep in the sun for a while.


So that was another quiet, lost day. There are so many things i should be doing, and I just don't feel like doing any of them. Now it's a cloudy, breezy night in the field and we're under a lake effect snow watch for tomorrow and Sunday. Ah, winter!


January 26

I finished part five of the Chronicle last night, and it only came out a little more than 22,000 words. That's too short, but right now, I can't see any way to make it longer, do I will stash it away and wait until I'm rereading it. I had to completely rewrite the ending to reflect what went before, so that was a nice change from transcribing and editing. I set up part six, and I'll be writing on that tonight.


Anyway, I went up to the north end around 10:00, but I decided to finish the heel of the sock, so it was around midnight when I got to bed. It was nice to knit on something I can knit fast, but my hands were sore by the time I quit.


I got up sometime between 9:30 and 10:00 and I knitted the first square on the 22nd tier - only eight more squares to go! It was birch leaves, which goes fast, but right at the end, there was a break in the yarn and when I started unknitting to work it in, I dropped something so I had to unknit about four rows before I could do the end.  I don't know why, but the yarn requirements in the pattern are much too much for the way I knit. I'm not too happy, since the yarn was $50 a skein at that time. I am going to have plenty of yarn left to make a lace scarf, which is something I'm likely to wear more often than the stole.


I didn't do much else, but I did finally cook tonight. I made my pork chops with onions and mushroom soup, and I cooked half of my kale. The pork chops are always good, and I made some Royal Rice with beans, which I love. The kale was a real winner. I braised it with a shallot and vegetable broth, and I only cooked it for eight or ten minutes, which was plenty. Oh, all that dark leafy green goodness! Yum! For some reason i thought it might be strong flavored, but it's much milder than spinach and it has a very nice favor that went well with the shallot. I will definitely get it again. I really like to eat things that are so good for me that taste so good. The next adventure is Swiss chard, but I'm having a hard time finding that. One of these days, I'll have to go to Econo, and maybe I can find it there. So that turned out well.


I really haven't felt like cooking, which is why I waited so long, but it was either cook or go down to the basement and shop the freezer, and my knees were bothering me today. I do need to go down there for several reasons. I need more stuff in the freezer up here, and I want to hunt up the cotton yarn I bought years ago to make dishrags out of. I want to try the pattern Jill gave me. There are several other things I need to do down there, which is why I didn't go today. Thursday is a day when there are lots of things to read from email. Maybe tomorrow.


The weather was nondescript. The low temperature for the day was 32 and the high was 34. There was a little wind overnight, but it was nearly calm today. it was cloudy and blah. I noticed it is snowing in Houghton, so maybe we will get a few flakes tonight.


Jasmine has been upstairs several times in the past two days, although I haven't seen her. She does tell me she's there, and we have a conversation. I think she's conflicted. She wants me to know she's there, but she doesn't want me to look at her. I talk to her, and I try not to make any moves she might think were threatening. I try to be patient. I think she knows it's better that I'm here than if I wasn't.


So that was another quiet day, and now I will write for a while again. It's a dark, cloudy night in the field, and we might see a snowflake or two overnight.


January 25

I wrote for a while last night, but I needed to take a bath, so I went up to the north end earlier than usual. I think I got to bed around midnight, but I don't remember. This morning I had a couple of very vivid dreams that included the faces of one man and two cats I've never seen before, not in the same dream. I'm not sure how I can do that. I got up a little after 10:00 and knitted the left-hand triangle. Yea! Now I only have nine squares and two triangles to go before I start the finishing. I'll really get it done someday!

I didn't have time to do much, because the ladies' thing at Carolyn's was today. I didn't even get to read my funnies before I left, but then, there were lots of emails to read and links to follow.


There were fewer ladies today, but it was a good group. I got a pattern for a round washcloth out of it, as well as some things about what's going on in town. There was a lot of discussion about how they bill water in town, which left me very glad I have my own water and sewage system. It sounds like, if a person has their own well, which many still do, they calculate the bill by waving their hands real hard over the amount of water that comes out of the well, and they're clearly way, way behind on billing right. No wonder there are people who don't pay their bills at all.


I had a disaster on the heel of the Tofutsies sock: way back when I started it at the car dealership, I dropped a couple of stitches, so I came up two short and I ended up ripping out the whole heel and starting it over. I didn't find  that out until everyone was starting to leave, so I have al lot of stitches to reknit. Drat. That's not the kind of knitting that I want to do right now. I want to finish my shawl, knit the other shawl I have on needles, finish my red and black hat, and maybe knit a sweater or another shawl. Socks are waiting room projects.


So that was a nice afternoon. I stopped at the post office before the meeting, and my beautiful purple sweater kit had come. It has a lovely fair isle yoke, but like the other one I got from the same source, the shape of the sweater is really weird, and the  yoke is sort of a cone. I'm wondering if I'm going to have to redo and rechart the yoke pattern to make it a better shape. The round yoke I knitted on the chenille sweater came out very nicely, and I may have to fiddle. I like the yarn from Knit Picks, but every pattern I've gotten from them has had something wrong with it. We'll see. I'm not ready to start a sweater in my size on #2 needles just yet anyway.


The weather was so-so. The temperature finally got up to 34, just now, and there was no wind to speak of. Around 4:00, the sky cleared, and there was a little sunshine late in the day. When I went to get my dinner, there was a teensy crescent moon hanging over the mountain, but it kept getting partly covered by clouds, so it wasn't completely clear then. 


So that was another quiet day, with a little socializing for a while. Now i will write a little more and maybe finish part five (which isn't very long). It's a dark, quiet, partly cloudy night in the field.


January 24

I started writing again last night, and it was 1:00 before I got to bed. I'm not sure how part five will look, but I think it's a lot better than the original. Anyway, I slept well, but at 8:30, I got a call back from the complaint I made last night about the programming on WGGL. I was about to go back to sleep at 9:00 to say she had found out about my problem. Well, by that time I decided I might as well get up, so I didn't get nearly enough sleep.


It was another lost day. I knitted my square and I did my surfing and I picked up some of the trash on the floor of the studio, and that was it.


The weather sort of settled down. It snowed all night and it snowed until about noon today, but then it stopped. The overnight low was 17, and the temperature rose to 24 briefly. There was a wind in the 20-35 mph from the north all night long but it has died down to nearly nothing and switched around to the west (maybe - when it's blowing at 3.5 mph, I'm never very sure of its real direction). It was dark and cloudy all day, but there were one or two rays of sunshine.


The total snow for the past two days, according to the road commission, was 15", and that puts us ahead of last year. So far for this month we've had 62.3". Well, that's at Delaware. We haven't had that much in the harbor, but it's been OK. The junipers in the north side yard aren't covered yet, so I'm not happy. I like to see those things buried. This last snow was so wet and heavy that this morning there was still snow on the tops of the tall pines, even with the wind, and you've been able to see that the branch from my white pine is still hanging down. There is a lot of snow on my deck, and even though it's wet and heavy, I have some nice drifts in front of the studio doors. IT would be nice to get the bird feeders out, if I could get the screen door open, but in order to do it, I'd have to shovel. Yuck.


I still don't feel all that good, and I'm tired, because I didn't get enough sleep last night. My nose is still dripping and my sinuses are draining. I'm sure I have some sort of upper respiratory thingie.


So that was my day, and now I will write a bit, hopefully not too long, because I have to wash my hair. It's another dark, cloudy night in the field and there doesn't seem to be any chance I'll see the northern lights tonight.


January 23

Today is my parents' 72nd wedding anniversary. I always note it, even though they're both gone, because if they hadn't gotten married, I wouldn't be here.


Last night I wrote for a while, about 4700 words worth, and I think it was around midnight when I got to bed. I slept very well, thank you, except that at one point I woke up and it felt like I'd been sleeping with the top of my left ear folded over. Ouch. So I turned onto the other side and it feels better now. During the night, we didn't have any snow, but I was awake just before dawn and it had started snowing then.


I got up around 10:30, I think, and I finished the square I started yesterday. Only 10 more to do, plus three triangles and the finishing. Wow, I might really finish this thing!


I did nothing. Even with all my sleep, I still don't feel very robust, so I just sat. 


It snowed all day, and it's still snowing. When I got up, it looked like around 3" of snow on the deck railing, and it's continued to snow all day. It was warm enough for most of the day that the snow is wet and heavy, which is why the branch of the pine tree beside the studio is hanging down. I was surprised that it was that branch, which is the one the feeder hanger is attached to. It used to be a branch that was closer to the house, but I think that one has grown enough that it lays on the roof now so it doesn't bend down.


The temperature got up to 33 around 1:00 before it started dropping off as the wind shifted around to the northeast and began to rise. Now, at 8:00, it's 22 and the wind is from the north at 20-30 mph. The lake is starting to sing. Of course it was cloudy and dark all day, and we couldn't see the mountain, or even Copper Harbor, at all.


So it was another nothing day, and now it's a dark and snowy night in the field.


January 22

I went up to the north end at a reasonable hour last night, and then I had to fill the pill dispensers, so it was about 11:00 when I got to bed. I slept, with the usual wakeups. I was awake around 8:00, but that didn't feel like quite enough sleep, so I went back to bed - and it was 12:15 before I woke up again! Egad! 13 hours' sleep! And curiously enough, I'm tired again.


I think I'm fighting some sort of bug. I have had a scratchy throat off and on lately and last evening, I was sneezing. My nose is still running like a sieve and my eyes are watery. I'll hope all the sleep will chase it away or I'll come down with something and get it over with.


Anyway, I was so late that I didn't do much at all. I cleaned off the trash on the counter, but of course I've made more.


I was thinking about cooking tonight, but I wasn't hungry and I didn't feel like fooling around. I will be doing it, though, because I have a yen for pork chops and I'm defrosting a package. There must be something about pork. Either cooked pork doesn't freeze well or it's such a local taste that the big companies don't want to bother with it. People in this area eat a lot of pork: there is more in the meat cases than there is beef. When I lived in Detroit, that wasn't the case. For myself, I'm ambivalent. I have a couple of recipes I like to make with pork chops, but when I was younger, my family ate quite a bit of pork and in those days it was so fatty that sometimes it upset my stomach and I've never gotten over it. It's probably been 30 years since I made roast pork. Sometime I should do that, because I like it cold - with ketchup, of course. We'll see.


The weather warmed up amazingly. The high temperature was 31, for several hours this afternoon. There was a strong wind from the southwest, in the 20-35 mph range. The wind has now died down and gotten variable, which means it's going to change direction. Where it goes will determine what we get tomorrow. It was very dark and cloudy all day.


The NWS is hedging. Now they say it's a winter weather advisory and there may be freezing rain along with the snow. Yuck! Please, please cool down enough to just give us snow! I hate ice, even though I have no intention of going out tomorrow.


So that was a quiet day. I fiddled around after I finally finished my surfing, but I read what I wrote while I was wolfing down a not very good dinner, and I think I will write for a while. It sounds pretty good to me, so I'll press on.


Now it's a dark night in the field and by morning I expect something to be coming out of the sky. Let's hope it's snow.


January 21

I took the binder up to the north end last night and I read until I couldn't focus anymore, so it was about 11:00 when I got to bed. It was snowing when I turned out the lights, but it stopped later. I can tell by how (or whether) I can see the lights of town, It has to get really bad before I can't see the lighthouse.


I was up several times, but I expected that, since I had fish for dinner last night. It seems to have helped, and my feet weren't so swollen this morning. I got up around 10:00, which should have been enough sleep. I knitted my square and folded the underwear. All the rest of the wash is still in the laundry room, but that's because I'm not wearing any of that stuff now. Sometime I'll have to put it all away.


i had another accident, so I had to wash a pair of sweatpants. This one was mostly my own fault, though - I waited too long.


I discovered that one reason it was only 62 in the studio when I got here this morning is that somehow the "hold" button hadn't gotten pushed. It's up to 68 now, but it was really cold all day, and my hands were two blocks of ice.


It warmed up a bit outside, too. It was 14 for most of the afternoon, and it has now risen to 18, It was rather windy overnight, but it was almost calm all day. It was mostly cloudy, and according to the NWS, there was a little snow this afternoon, although I didn't see it. 


Sometime after 4:00, Ron showed up and cleared out the driveway and the door to the breezeway. He is having car trouble - his car, which is used, is burning oil, and just a day or two ago, the hood latch apparently broke, so he can't open the hood to put the oil in. So he was trying to use his old truck, and he had to pull it out of drifts with the tractor twice this afternoon, so he figured while he was out, he might as well do my driveway and maybe clear some of the road, too. I went out to help shovel around the door, but I couldn't do much, because the drifts were too heavy for me. With my parka on, it wasn't too bad outside, and since the humidity has dropped a bit, my back wasn't so bad.


I spent quite a bit of time writing this afternoon, and I have 5900 words done. This is going to be another rewrite like parts one and two, maybe worse, and I think it will end up being longer than the original, but I discovered when I read it that it was almost an outline, with a little detail here and there, and much of the detail was about things I've decided not to talk about. So this will be like writing from an outline. but maybe I can make a good story out of it. It's an important episode, and I want to try to do it right.


I didn't see Jasmine today. She was in the hallway when I went through the kitchen last night, and I heard her a couple of times. i just heard her rustling around in the great room, although she didn't say anything. She got some of her favorite canned food tonight, so she ought to be happy.


So now I'm tired again and I think I will totter up to the north end soon. I'm not going to church tomorrow. Pastor is on vacation for a couple of weeks, and I am not a big fan of lay services, so I think I'll just hibernate. It  might snow some tomorrow, but it is going to snow on Monday, possibly heavily. So winter is finally upon us.


Now it's a dark, calm night in the field, and it's not snowing now.


January 20

This is getting monotonous. I finished part four of the Chronicle, although I don't like the ending very well, then I set up part five. That was at a late but reasonable hour. But then I started reading part five to see what I have to change - a lot, as it turns out - and it was after 1:00 before I got to bed. I got up around 9:45, which wasn't enough sleep, and I'm tired now. I knitted my square and got dressed.


I put on a new pair of jeans, because unfortunately, I've grown out of my smallest old pairs. Christmas candy, no doubt. Anyway, I had on a comfortable clean pair when I had a really nasty accident and had to change them - and I picked the other small pair. Then, late this afternoon, I was opening the package of shrimp cocktail I got last Sunday and I spilled smelly, shrimpy water into my lap. So I went through two pairs of jeans in one day. Geez.


I got dressed in something other than sweats because I had to go out. I hadn't been to the post office all week, and I heard last night that my case of toilet paper was at the Gas Lite. I needed eggs, too. So I did all that.


It was a good day to stay indoors. The temperature only got down to 6 here overnight. I suppose it was lower in the interior, like at the airport. The wind died down to nearly nothing by midnight, and it was quiet for most of the day. The high temperature was 12, briefly about the time I was out. It snowed all day again, but a bit more lightly than yesterday, because there weren't any reports from the rain gauge. Anyway, it was cold and snowy.


According to the Road Commission, we've had 10" of snow since this event started. They usually take their measurements around 10:00 in the morning, and we had more during the day. It is snowy. I have quite a drift in front of my garage door, although I haven't had any trouble getting through it. I sort of slid sideways going in this afternoon, but then the dry garage and the 4WD kicked in and there was no problem. I had to shovel a few shovelfuls that fell under where the door closes. According to the Road Commission, this gives us 95" for the season, but that's 10" behind where we were last year. They did a really nice job on that website - it has just about all the information you might want.


So that was my day. It's been about 65 in the studio all day, and I really don't know why, since I've had the door closed. I went up to the north end to change my pants before dinner and it feels warm up there. Possibly it's because what wind there was has been from the west. One of these days, I'm going to have to go down to the basement to shop in my freezer, and I'll check the zone valves.


I heard Jasmine today, I think, but I didn't see her. She probably has some hidey hole where she can keep warm, although she has a thick coat.


Now I'm so tired that I think instead of writing tonight, I will go up to the north end, where it's a bit warmer, and read this story. All I know about it is the short note I wrote at the beginning, and I want to see how I get from page 49 to page 93 (handwritten, but this is a very short one). What I've read in the first 49 pages is going to have to be almost completely rewritten, so I need to have some idea where I'm going.


It's another cold, snowy night in the field and sleeping will be good.


January 19

I was a good girl last night, and I only wrote 3800 words or so. Then I went up to the north end and instead of taking my bath and going to bed, I read the Bible for a while, so it was midnight before I turned out the light anyway. It was a good night to sleep, with the wind whipping around the eaves and the lake singing in the background. 


I got up around 10:00, I think, and I finished my triangle before I got dressed. i was going to do more, but I decided against it.


I think the dishwasher is almost ready to run, but that's about all I did. There was another CHIA advertising meeting this evening, but it was a short one. We did talk about a few interesting things, but it was over in a hurry.


The story of the day was the weather. The temperature plunged and the wind rose all night long, and by the time I got to the studio, it was 5. It stayed like that for several hours, and it has now risen to 10. Whee!  A heat wave! The wind shifted to the north around midnight last night and it peaked between 7:00 and 9:00 this morning, at over 30 mph with 43 mph gusts. That's slowed down some now, to 18-30 mph, but needless to say the wind chills were in double digits below zero all day. They say it's supposed to get even colder tonight, and we may have wind chills of -20 or -30. Well, I'll wait to see that. It's going to be a nice night to hunker down under the covers. Oh, yes, and it snowed all day, fine grainy flakes that don't pile up so deep. Trevor said they called a snow day today, for the first time in two years. I suppose it was a combination of the snow and the cold, with all the wind. 


So now I will write a bit more, but I'm tired and I hope I won't be as late as I have been lately. Now it's a frigid, windy, snowy night in the field.


January 18

I wrote for quite a while last night, and then instead of going to bed, I read ahead in the story to get an idea of what I might be writing next, so I was too late to take a bath and I got to bed very late.  I have had some kind of stomach bug for the past few days which has given me bouts of severe stomach cramps. The night before last, it went away before I got to bed, but last night it didn't, and around 4:30 I had to spend half an hour in the bathroom. That helped, and then I took some Imodium, and that helped even more.


I meant to sleep for a long time, but around 10:30, I heard some strange noises, so I got up. I don't know if the noises were in the house or in my head, but I'm leaning toward my head, since I didn't hear anything after I got up. I knitted another block and started a right-hand triangle. Now i have only three tiers - 13 blocks - left to do, then I can get on to the finishing. I'm not going to enjoy the finishing, since it's all seed stitch and I hate seed stitch, but now that I've gotten this far, I don't want the thing to be almost done.


I didn't do much of anything. I didn't get enough sleep, and I felt sort of groggy all day. I did put some stuff in the dishwasher, which helped the mess in the kitchen, and that was about it.


The weather was cold and snowy, and I was glad not to go out. The temperature got down to 12 overnight and it rose slowly all day, until now it's 21. The winds were mostly under 10 mph and mostly from the west. It snowed most of the night and part of the day, and there was a ray of sunshine around 1:00, when I was trying to do my surfing.


We now have nearly 9 hours of daylight, and the sun has risen to 22 above the horizon at noon, which means it's above the crossbar of the window. We're gaining daylight at just over 2 minutes a day, so we're making progress.


We are under a winter storm watch from tonight until tomorrow evening, I guess it will be lake effect snow. An efriend told me about the Keweenaw County snow report, so now I don't have to call them to get the totals. I wish it didn't have all those "0.0"s in it, but otherwise, they've done a very nice job of summarizing, including month to day. We're behind last year, and because we had so much warm weather, we have only about half of what we had last year on the ground. Of course, they take their measurements at Delaware, which is in the "higher elevations". We haven't' had nearly as much here in the harbor and we have even less on the ground, except right in front of my garage door and my patio doors.


I didn't see Jasmine today, but I did hear her once.


The Pasty Cam didn't update today because they were protesting the bills in Congress that are supposed to help computer piracy, but were written by people who don't know which end of a computer is up and would seriously compromise the freedom of the Internet (really, they would, no matter what some people might tell you). I signed the petition, and I don't usually do those things, but I am so fed up with Congress that I felt my voice should be heard. Computer piracy is a serious problem, no doubt, but if there are going to be laws to try to rein it in, they need to be written by people who know something about what they're doing. It's clear that the two bills in Congress now were written by Hollywood lobbyists whose only concern is their clients, and they have no understanding of the Internet or how it works or what these bills would do to legitimate sites, from Google to PastyNet. So that's my soapbox rant for the day.


So that was my day and I'm going to write some more before I go up to the north end. Tonight I must take a bath, no matter when I get up there, because I have to go out and be socially acceptable tomorrow. 


It's a dark night in the field and the snow is coming...the snow is coming...


January 17

I started writing on part four of the Chronicle last night, and it's not going to be quite as much of a rewrite as I thought - or at least I'm not rewriting it as much as I thought I'd have to. I wrote almost 11,000 words, so you can imagine when I went to bed this morning.  It's slow work. It seems like I can at best transcribe and heavily edit about 1500 words an hour. Sometimes I have to read ahead and sometimes I have to go back to what I've already written, and sometimes I just have to sit and stare alternately at the handwritten page and the computer screen. 


Anyway, it was really late when I went to bed, and i was really tired. I didn't wake up for the first time until about 8:30, and the next time was at 10:30, but after that I dozed for about an hour before I got up. I knitted the next square of the shawl, and it was 1:00 before I got to the kitchen. 


When I turned on the water in the sink, Jasmine yelled at me, and we had quite a conversation while I got my lunch together, then she ran across the sitting area of the great room with her ears flat to her head and hid under a footstool, except for the tip of her tail. That's one thing that has always made me laugh about cats - they will run off to hide and leave the end of their tails hanging out in plain sight. Anyway, I think she went off to the basement after that, because I haven't seen her since. I suppose she'd be happier if I stayed up all night and slept all day so she could have the rest of the house to herself. Poor Jasmine. I'm afraid I'll never convince her I wouldn't ever do anything to her.


I spent most of the afternoon doing my surfing. There was a lot to read today. Now that the talking is over, I'm back at the story, but I hope not to be quite so late tonight, because I should wash my hair. We'll see what happens. This is another good one, if I can edit it properly. 


One of my correspondents pointed out to me that I missed a link when I was updating the camera page for the new version of Kabcam. I'm not surprised - there were 99 links to change, after all. It was confusing because the pictures from the old version are still out on the website, so picture 60 was from 11/14. I don't suppose many people go back that far to see what was happening. Anyway, I'm always glad to know about any missing links or anything else weird about the site. I fixed it right away, but I didn't upload it then. It will go with this file. If anybody wants to check all 99 links on the camera page, be my guest, and if anything is wrong, please tell me. I'll leave the pictures from 11/14 and 11/15 out there for a few days longer, just in case.


The weather was good for hunkering down. I don't think it snowed overnight, but it started around sunrise and it 's been snowing all day, with dropping temperatures and rising winds. It's now 16 with north winds in the 20-30 mph range. I don't know how much snow has fallen, but probably an inch or two in squalls. Since it's so cold, the flakes are small and they pack down a lot. I was just as glad to stay in.


That's about all I have to report. Now it's a dark, snowy, windy night in the field.


January 16

I finished part three of the Chronicle, but I haven't reread it yet. I've decided to keep on writing for a while It came in at around 28,000 words, like I thought it would. But then, instead of going to bed like a good girl, i started reading the next part, which I hadn't read before. This is going to be another complete rewrite. I'm afraid. It would have been anyway, because the beginning and the middle don't agree, but so much has changed since 1972 that I have a lot of work to do. Except for the general outline of the story, it will have to be all new, and I hope, better. It's trekking across the landscape story, mostly, and I like to do those.


So it was very late when I got to bed. I slept well, with a number of wakeups until 10:30. Then I knitted the second half of the square I was working on. I started the wash on my way to the kitchen, but I'm still doing it. I forget about it when I'm in the studio, and I need to get the white stuff done and dried tonight because I had another accident and used the last pair of clean underpants.


That was about all I did. I read some more on the story, and I would like to start typing tonight. The beginning will be mostly transcription, with heavy editing, so I can do that for a while tonight. 


The weather was blah again. The temperature got up to 34 for a while, and while there was a lot of wind last night, there wasn't so much today. It was cloudy and blah all day. There was enough wind last night that the ice all crunched up at this end of the harbor. but it's supposed to get cold and snow tonight, so there will be more ice tomorrow. 


They say it's supposed to snow some for the next week or so. We need the snow, There were quite a few snowmobiles at Mariner when I came home yesterday, and I talked to Vicky this afternoon, and she said they had a really weekend, so that sounds hopeful, but things still aren't the way they should be at this time of year, because we haven't had enough snow. Snow! Please!


So that was a quiet day, and after I write a while and get the clothes into the dryer, I will totter off to bed. It's a cool, dark night in the field.


January 15

I'm forgetting to write this thing again. Oh, well. I don't have anything to do tomorrow except sleep - and wash.


I made it into bed by just after 10:00 last night, and I didn't set the alarm clock, but I didn't sleep at all well. I was up any number of times and it seemed like I only dozed in between. I woke up just before 7:00, and I didn't feel too bad, so i got up.


I was able to do most of my surfing and get dressed and still get away a bit early, which was a good thing. The roads were plowed and sanded, of course, but there was a lot of hard packed snow all the way to Mohawk, and it was particularly bad on the covered road. I made it, though, and I was glad to be there. We sang one of my favorite hymns, and i guess I was singing so loudly that the acolyte turned around to see who it was. Sorry about that. I don't have the world's best voice, but I can make a lot of noise when I want to, especially on the last verse when we stood up.


Then I was off to Pat's to resolve my problem with my last order, and of course I bought a few more things. I was a bit discombobulated because they are in the process of replacing all their fridges. Instead of open shelves with the stuff stacked on them, now they will all be in fridges with doors. It's not as easy to get into, but things may keep better. They are all black, inside and out, and they are very impressive looking. In the process of doing that, they are rearranging things a bit. Fortunately, it isn't a complete rearrangement like Kroger did every so often. I assume they do that to try to get us to buy more, but it only frustrated me. Anyway, it was interesting.


So it was nearly 2:00 when I got home and unloaded the car. I've had three boxes, two of which were pills, in the car for a week and I finally got that stuff out, too.


And that was weird. I have been buying most of my probiotics from a place called VItaCost, which has good prices on most things and an incredible selection of natural remedies, natural foods and stuff like that. If you want it, they probably have it, and their price will be pretty good. Two of the things I've been getting are supposed to be refrigerated, or so I found out. The first time I got the bifidus one, it wasn't in a cold pack. The acidophilus was every time. And the last time I got the bifidus, it was, too. So this time, the bifidus was in the cold pack and the acidophilus wasn't. Huh? I wrote them an email and asked why. Strange.


Anyway, last night when I was about to go to bed, I suddenly realized that i was supposed to wash yesterday. Oops. No wonder I'm nearly out of underpants. So I had to wear the same pair of compression hose I've worn all week, and I will have to wash tomorrow. I was too tired and my feet were too sore when I got home today.


The weather was cold and cloudy. It got down to 12 overnight, and it was in the middle teens when I left for church. I wore my parka. When the temperature is under 25, I don't care how I look; I just want to be warm. It was up to around 22 when I got home, and it continued to rise, until now it's 29. There wasn't any wind to speak of until after sunset, and it's now in the 15-30 mph range from the southwest.


After I finished my surfing, I started typing again, and I think I will finish this story tonight. It's only going to be around 28,000 words, which is a little less than the first three, but that's all right. It was short anyway and there's a lot of stuff I had to take out. When I reread it, I may find I can put some other stuff in. We'll see. It's kind of an interesting story and I want to see how it ends. My right thumb got sore there for a while, because that's the thumb I use on the space key.


So that was a quiet Sunday, and now it's a cold, breezy night in the field. There might be a star or two tonight, but Environment Canada has been wrong about that before,


January 14

Egad, I forgot I have to write this thing. I'm going to be late tonight.


I wrote and wrote last night, over 10,000 words, and it was very late when I got to bed. I slept until around 11:30. I knitted half of the next square - lily of the valley - because it's a slow knit. 


I had the second accident in two days. I just cannot tell when a pain in the gut is serious and when it's not. So I had to wash a couple of pairs of underpants and a pair of sweatpants. 


Otherwise, I did almost nothing, except that I got back at the writing and wrote around 6.000 words. This episode is going to be a rather short one, I think, but it's kind of a neat one.


The weather was blah. Environment Canada said we were going to have a little sunshine this afternoon, but they were wrong. We had about five minutes' worth. The high temperature was 20 and there was no wind at all: it was a dead calm for the entire afternoon. I was interested to look out the window and find that this whole end of the harbor has iced over. I don't think it's very thick, and there were a few cracks near my beach, but it's frozen. We had our requisite couple of short snow showers. Blah.


So that was my day, and I need to hurry up and post this so I can take my bath. I'm not sure I'll make it to church tomorrow, although I do want to go. I just need too much sleep. Now it's a cold, dark, and quiet night in the field.


January 13

I wrote again and I finished part two of the Chronicles, about 2,000 words. But then instead of doing what I should have, I started part three and wrote 1,800 or so words on that. It's more nearly transcription, at least for a while, although tonight I've had to start doing some heavy editing. The writing was much better than the earlier stories, but there were a few quirks that I developed that I have to edit out.


Anyway, with all that, it was 1:00 or a bit later when I got to bed, with no bath. Oh, well, I didn't have anything planned for today anyway.


I got up around 10:30 and I knitted the next square with only a little difficulty. I had to rip back a couple of rows because I dropped something, but that didn't take long. I unloaded the dishwasher while my breakfast was cooking - see? It only takes the time it takes to fry an egg. I don't know why I always try to put it off. Not everything is put away, but the dishwasher is empty.


I did my surfing, and then I attacked the meeting minutes. I was glad to see that I could sort of remember what went on, and I think I got everything I needed to put in, except Larry's last name, which I don't know. I sent it off to Vicky around 3:00, but I haven't heard back from her.


The weather was good for hunkering down. It continued to snow all night and most of the day, although it lightened up during the night and again this afternoon. When I got up this morning, it was snowing quite briskly. The temperature dropped overnight from 19 to 14, where it stood for most of the day. Now it's gotten up to 16, but it was cold outside. The wind peaked at 5:00 am, with 39 mph gusts, and while it's been gusty all day, it's now in the 15-30 mph range, from the northeast. I always figured our storms would come from the north or west, and for the first few years I was here, they did. The last couple of years, though, we've had a lot of weather out of the east or northeast. Strange.


After the talking was over, I started writing again, and I'll continue that. I liked this story when I re-read it, and I'm anxious to get it into the computer and spiffed up.


So that was a quiet day, although I did accomplish a couple of things. Now it's a dark, cold, windy night in the field. Our snow event is over, although there will be more snow squalls for the next few days. We need more.


January 12

Last night I wrote a little over 6,000 words, so I got to bed late. It apparently started snowing right around sunset, and there was about an inch of snow on the deck when I went to bed. It snowed all night long and it snowed all day, too. I didn't make it out of bed until around 11:00, and I knitted with some difficulty, so it was really late when I got to the studio.


I didn't do much except my surfing. The CHIA advertising committee met tonight for the first time in nearly a year, I think, so I had to go to that. It turned out great. We have two new members, Ron and Larry (whose last name I don't know yet). Larry used to be associated with advertising, and he wants to get involved in everything, so that is very good news. I think we're going to be able to convince Ron to be treasurer. Syd, who is now CHIA president, was there, too, which is a good thing, and she is going to oversee Thunder in the Harbor this year. I took lots of notes, which I will try to whittle down into a report tomorrow. Vicky spent most of the meeting bringing the three new members up to speed on what we do and what our issues are, but it was a good discussion. Vicky finally got her hands on the old Copper Harbor webcam and Ron offered to see what he can do about checking it out and getting it running again. That was good news, too, although if that one won't work, Vicky said that Mike has a line on a reasonably priced one to replace it. It will apparently go someplace on Kilpelas' property, possibly on top of the shop, Elizabeth's. I'm sure a lot of people will be glad to have it running again. I used to love to look at it myself, to see what the harbor looks like from the other end.


I was thinking, both while we were meeting and while i was writing the above paragraph, that it sure is nice to live in a town where there is one Mike and one Larry and one Ron. Of course, there are two Sharons, but that has to be expected. The other Sharon's husband and I share a birth date, too. Sometimes it's a small world.


Anyway, I had a late dinner and after I publish this, I will write some more, with the lake singing in the background. There was a rather interesting live concert on the radio, but there was too much talking associated with it, so I turned it off.


We are having our snow event. It started snowing lightly around sunset, and it's been snowing ever since, but not hard enough to register in the NWS rain gauge. It has been enough to prevent the camera from seeing down the harbor, and it looked to me like possibly 6" of snow has fallen, although it's hard to say, because the winds have been in the 25-35 mph range from the northeast for the whole time, so there are lots of drifts. There is a 2' drift about 2' from the door to my garage, so I sort of had to blast my way through then pull back into the garage and out again in my usual spot to get turned around. There weren't any serious drifts on Woodland Road. The temperature was around 20 all day. The lake is singing loudly, but so far it sounds like low alto, so it's not a gale by any means.


So that was my day, and now I will write some more before I totter up to the north end and take a bath. It's a dark, snowy night in the field.


January 11

I wrote again, and then I had to take a bath, so it was  1:00 before I got to bed. I got up sometime between 10:00 and 10:30, and I knitted a square before I got dressed. I got time to do some of my surfing before I was off to Carolyn's, via the post office. Yes, the ladies' meetings are starting again. There were a lot of ladies there, including Elsebet and Margaret, who are neighbors of Chip and Nancy and who have moved up here permanently. It was a nice group, with lots of laughter.


After considerable thought, I took the stole with me, but I only got part of the left triangle done. It just takes too much concentration for me to knit even that, so I won't take it again until I start the edging. Everybody thought it was amazing, although I'm still not sure it's such a good piece of work. It will be pretty when it's done and blocked.


That took up the afternoon. I was trying to get the rest of my surfing done when part of my internet connection seemed to go away. I let it go for an hour or so, but then I called, and when Charlie called back, it seems like their backbone provider apparently lost a  major node. I could get to the east coast just fine, but I couldn't get to Ann Arbor. It took a couple of hours to clear up, but only about an hour after Jon put in his trouble ticket. I'd like to know what the answer was, but I don't like to bother Charlie like that just to satisfy my curiosity.


The weather was good for being in a nice warm house with nice people. It was dark and dismal and it drizzled a bit at times. The temperature was around 35, plus or minus a degree or two, all afternoon. There wasn't any wind. The temperature has dropped a couple of degrees since it got dark, and something has been coming down, although with no light, I can't tell if it's rain or snow. The wind is beginning to get up a bit, too.  It is definitely going to snow tonight, tomorrow and probably Friday as well, and it's going to get much colder. I certainly hope this is the end of our warm weather!


So that was a day, and I find I'm really tired. However, I want to write a bit more tonight. There is no bath tonight and I don't have any reason to get up tomorrow, so maybe I can catch up on my sleep. Now it's a dark, rainy or snowy night in the field, and we're going ot have another blow. Goodie!


January 10

I wrote for a while, then I had to read what I wrote a couple of times, so it was midnight before I got to bed. I slept well, but I got up at 9:00, which was much too early, but I wanted time to do some of my surfing before I was off to my massage.


I'm pleased to report that Johanna looks better, although she's still thin. However, it sounds like her medical troubles aren't over with, so I will be anxious to hear what she finds out from her next tests. My goodness, that girl has been through the ringer in the past year!


I guess I haven't written much about Eos, who is Jo's dog. She is a Belgian malinois, which is a shepherd-type dog, but she is more refined- looking than a German shepherd. She is a big dog and she can run like anything. She has bigger ears than a German shepherd, but a pointed nose and a very pretty face, with nice expressive brown eyes. And I don't think I've ever known a smarter dog. She knows my car, she knows me, and she knows I bring doggie biscuits. She knows she's expected to sit to get them, and she knows I expect her to be gentle when she takes them. She'd like more than I give her, of course, but I said to her, "I don't think your mama would like that."   She had been looking at me, and when I said that, she turned her head and looked at Jo, as if to say, "That's not really true, is it?" I enjoy her. I think I talked about her last year when she stepped on a broken toilet in the woods and shredded her lower back leg. She is over that now, and it's a good thing, because she is the kind of dog that needs regular exercise. Now that I know about her, if I were ever to consider getting a dog (which I probably wouldn't), that is one breed I would certainly consider.


I felt much better after my massage. I stopped at the post office, where there was a ton of mail and three large packages, two of which were pills. Most of the mail was catalogs, some of which I want to look at. There were pleas for money already. 


So I did nothing much for the rest of the afternoon. I roasted my little rib eye roast tonight, and it's such fun to play with my oven! I used convection roast and the probe, which means I set the oven temp, the roast internal temp, pushed start, and went away. It's fun. It turned out just right, maybe a little rare for the first meal, but it will warm up better that way. It was a tasty roast but it's a bit tough. Well, for the price I paid, I guess I shouldn't expect more. I hope the steaks I bought (and put away today) are tenderer. 


I was going to braise kale, but I just didn't feel like fooling around with shallots and mushrooms and vegetable broth. I am sort of guessing at a recipe. A long time ago, but I think after my mother died, when my local Kroger's started carrying bagged greens, for a short time they had what they called "braising greens." They didn't carry them long, unfortunately, and I think I only got them once. There was a recipe on the bag, of which all I can remember is shallots and half a cup of vegetable broth, so it will be an adventure. I thought a few baby bella mushrooms wouldn't hurt, although I've never tasted kale before, that I know of. I have enough of everything for two meals, so I have two tries to get it right. We'll see what happens.


The weather was not wintry. The high temperature reported was 41, although there was one measurement that was missing. There was hardly any wind. As Jo said when she helped me out of her house, it felt like March, not January. It was cloudy for most of the day, but it seems like it may have cleared up after dark, because when I came back from the powder room just now, the just-past-full moon was rising through the trees and it looked clear over there.


When I got home this afternoon, Jasmine mewed at me, then she took off from somewhere around the fireplace and went bombing up the stairs to the loft. When she gets there, she stops just around the corner, so all I can see is her tail. She mewed again, but she wasn't very talkative, and I don't know when she came down, or if she did. I was glad to see her upstairs, and I was glad to see her getting some exercise. She needs more than a mouse every two weeks or so.


So that was my day, and I would like to write some more, because I think I have arranged in my mind what's coming next, except that I've gotten awfully tired, and I need to wash my hair tonight. We'll see what happens. It's a warmish, clearish night in the field.


January 9

Oh, well, I didn't. I read for a while and played Bookworm for a while and read some more and it was very late when I got to bed. Sigh. I got up around 10:00, even though that wasn't enough sleep. 


I knitted the next square and I put some dishes in the dishwasher, and that was about it. Another lost day.


The weather was weird, and I probably should have stuck my nose out just to smell it. The temperature was around 40, plus or minus a degree or so, until 5:00, when it fell off a bit. It was very windy, with north winds in the 25-35 mph range. And it was almost completely clear until about 4:00, when a few clouds started to roll in. It's still blowing, but it's clouding up now. That got rid of most of the snow on my deck. I guess we're in for another warm day, and then the snows are supposed to come. I sure hope so.


Speaking of the camera, it hung up overnight last night again, so there were no early morning pictures. The first one it got was a good one, though. Sorry, I just don't feel like fiddling with setting up the 2012 camera pages tonight. I'll post it as soon as I do. I forgot about that.


Jasmine was upstairs when I went to bed last night, but she scooted when I walked through the great room. I hoped she might come upstairs today to enjoy the sunshine, but if she did, I didn't see her.


So that was my day. I think I will probably do a little writing tonight. I think I have straight how I want to handle the next part of this story, so now it's time to try.


So it's another dark, windy and warm night in the field.


January 8

Well, sometime I guess right and sometimes I don't.


I was in bed before 9:00 last night, so I got my sleep, although I was awake several times. I actually woke up 5 minutes before the alarm went off, and I did some of my surfing before I went up to the north end to get ready for church. When I looked outside, it seemed to be snowing rather briskly, but oh, well. So I left the house, and by the time I got to Copper Harbor, I was plowing through about three inches of new, untouched snow and it was still snowing hard. So I turned around in Amanda's front drive and came home.


By the time I took off my clothes and put on my sweats, it had pretty much stopped snowing and it didn't snow  much for the rest of the day. It wouldn't have been fun driving down to Laurium in all that new snow, and seeing wasn't very good at all at the time, so I guess that's my excuse, but I could have gotten there, I think.


Well, that's why I was so diligent about getting there when the roads were all right. I knew that eventually they would get iffy at best and I'd be staying home. Maybe next week.


I didn't do anything else much. I still don't feel very robust, so I hope to get to bed relatively early tonight again and hope to feel better tomorrow. 


I spent part of the afternoon reading part of the stories in Volume 2 (there are so many that there are 4 1" binders). I found what I was looking for last night, but all of the stories in that binder are pretty good and I found myself starting three of them before I called a halt and went back to what I was looking for. 


The weather was blah, mostly. It did snow rather briskly between 8:00 and 10:00, enough for the NWS station to report 0.04" of liquid, which is a lot. There was hardly any wind and the snow was coming straight down in big flakes. The temperature eventually got up to 30 for a while before it dropped back to 29 where it's been for the rest of the afternoon. Blah. The big snowflakes were pretty, though, if you weren't driving in it. It was slippery.


So that was my nothing day, and while I was thinking about writing for a while, I think I will read instead and then go crash. It's a dark, cloudy night in the field. Blah.


January 7

Oops. I almost pulled an all-nighter again last night. I wrote for a while, around 4,000 words, I think, then I wanted to read ahead, because I knew there was some stuff coming that I would need to rewrite. So I read off the end of the story, and yes, there is indeed some stuff that needs changing. Then I started reading the next story in line, because I didn't remember what it was about and I hadn't made any notes, and the next thing I knew I had finished it and it was early in the morning.


So I quick jumped in bed. I got up around 10:00. I didn't feel like it, but I figured that I would be so tired tonight that I would go to bed early and maybe sort of get back on schedule. And I am tired and I will be going up to the north end fairly soon. No writing tonight, although there is some stuff missing from this story that I thought was there, so I want to at least look over some of the others and see if I can find what I remember and decide what to put in the one I'm writing.


I started knitting and I was going along quite well, having done a bit over half of a lily of the valley square, when I twitched and dropped a whole bunch of stitches off both needles. Well, the yarn is so wiry and slippery that just pulling my hands apart unraveled enough that I had to rip back to the end of the first repeat to get it straightened out. When I'd done that, I quit. That was a sign it was not a good morning to knit. I don't know if other people have that problem, but every so often, when I'm doing crafts, I have a spasm, and depending what I'm doing, that can cause all sorts of nasty problems.


I didn't do anything else except for my surfing. I am really tired, which isn't surprising considering how little sleep I got last night.


The weather was so-so. The temperature went down to 22 overnight and stayed there for almost all day. It has risen a couple of degrees lately, but it's still cold. By the time I got to bed this morning, it had snowed a bit, possibly an inch, and there were a few snow showers today as well. It was cloudy and dark all day long. The wind was strong overnight, and the lake was singing, but the wind has dropped today, and it is now less than 15 mph from the north.


One of my problems with being tired is that my eyes don't want to focus very well at anything close. So I can't read or do any craft work except knit or crochet, and even with those, if I want to really see what I'm doing, I have to take off my glasses. I know I shouldn't do things like that, but oh, well. I'm old enough to do what I want to, even if I want to stay up all night long.


So now it's a cold, cloudy night in the field, and I won't be up very long.


January 6 - The Epiphany of our Lord

Instead of going to bed, I started looking at the event logs last night. I didn't find anything at all, but evidently everything has the possibility of logging, so it took a long time. My goodness Windows has gotten huge and complex! Anyway, that took quite a while, then when I got up to the north end, I started fooling around with an idea I had for using entrelacs (like the squares I've been knitting) and it was 1:30 or later before I got to bed. Sigh.


I got up around 10:30. I started to knit before I was really awake, and as a result, I dropped a bunch of stitches off the end of a row and had to pick the whole thing out and start over. Fortunately, it was only 4 rows or so, but still. Then I finished the square with no problems. 


While I was knitting, the wind started blowing rather hard, and from the noise, I guessed it was from the northwest. Right on. When I got up, I noticed a lot of water dripping off the eaves, and I thought it was raining, but when I got to the studio and looked around, it turned out that it was just the snow melting off the roof.


Overnight, the temperature rose to 42 and it stayed there all afternoon, with northwest winds in the 15-30 mph. It was partly cloudy when I got up, but before I had gotten half through the square, it clouded up. There was a little sunshine in my eyes while I was doing my surfing, but not much, and it's been dark and dismal ever since. It was so warm that with the wind, all the snow has melted off my deck and most of it is gone from the roofs, too. There is still some on the ground, though, and they say we may get some more tonight, as well as much colder temps. I hope so. We set another record high temperature today, and that's not good for our winter tourism.


i ended up not doing anything. I was going to go to the post office, but then I didn't. I did put a few things away in the kitchen this morning, but that was about it.


While I was sitting in the bathroom last night, Jasmine came out and came right down the hall to the bedroom door and we had quite a conversation. She just mewed and mewed before she finally went off. I have no idea what she was talking about. I heard her again during the night, but I didn't see or hear her at all today. I don't know what that was all about.


So that's about all I know. Now it's a dark, cloudy night in the field.


January 5

The twelfth day of Christmas.


When I checked the camera this morning, I discovered that it had hung up yesterday afternoon at about 5:00, and when I tried to restart Kabcam, it wouldn't, so i ended up rebooting the computer. One of my efriends, Jim, sent me a suggestion on how to try to track down what's going on, which I will do as soon as I have time. Something weird is going on lately.


I wrote about 3,700 words last night and I made some decisions on how to handle the story, so that's a good thing. I got to bed around 11:30, as usual. I slept well, with the usual wakeups and only a few dreams, not very weird ones. I got up around 10:00 and knitted the right-hand triangle. I was tempted to go on to the next square, which is more fern, but I decided I'd better not.


My surfing was interrupted by the camera troubles, and I never did complete it until this evening. Even so, it was late when I left the house - after 1:30 - and I gave up any ideas of going into Houghton. The drive wasn't bad. The road down to Delaware is still mostly snow and ice covered, and it might be slippery, although I couldn't feel it. From Delaware to Calumet, it's clear and nearly dry in spots where the sun hits it. Ah sun! It was coming out when I left, and it was mostly sunny for the rest of the afternoon.


Since I've been living out of the freezer, I did some real damage at Pat's, but now I can live from the freezer again for the next month. I got some nice rib eye steaks and a rib eye roast. I prefer my beef rib roasts bone-in, but they didn't have any of those. It will be a few days before I cook it, though, because I got a rotisserie chicken which tasted very good to me tonight. There was a lot of other stuff. I know eating these frozen entree things is expensive and I shouldn't do it, but I like them and most of the time, I don't feel like cooking. Throwing something in a pan or the microwave for 10 minutes or so is much easier, and I would never attempt to create any of the Chinese things from scratch.


There was one glitch. I wanted to get some pickled herring. I forgot about it the last time I shopped (which was before Thanksgiving, I think), and it was a tradition in my family to have it at New Year's. So I got a container of herring in wine sauce and a little bottle of herring in sour cream, my favorite. Well, the cashier wrapped them in bags and put them aside, and when I got home, they weren't there. That stuff is expensive, so I called Pat's and they said as long as I had my receipt, they could take care of it when I go back. So I suppose I'll have to stop on Sunday. Drat. If I go back, of course I'll buy something else, and after what I spent today, I shouldn't. Oh, well.


I got home about 4:45 and the way everything was packed, I had to bring it all into the house, which took a while, then I had to pack it all away. I couldn't get everything in the freezer up here, so I had to go downstairs, which I almost didn't make. I had to go down backwards, my legs protesting at every step. However, it's all safely packed away now and I will eat well.


I had to stop and get gas, and the price is going up again, darn it. I had not dressed very warmly when left, forgetting that I would be outside while I pumped gas, so I was a bit chilly when I was done. I waited until after I shopped, so that I could get the discount coupons and that helped a bit.


The weather was most unlike a normal January. The temperature got up to 36 this afternoon, and the sky cleared up around the time I left the house. There were some clouds, but mostly it was bright sunshine. A very pleasant surprise. There wasn't a lot of wind, except while I was pumping gas. It was nearly clear at sunset, too, so there should be some bright moonlight tonight.


When I went down the basement stairs, there was a dead mouse there, so sometime in the last couple of days, Jasmine got another one, but she evidently doesn't like field mouse, so she left it. So did I, but I will have to get rid of it. It will desiccate slowly, but it would be better if I put it in the trash. Otherwise, I didn't see or hear her. I hope she came upstairs while I was gone and enjoyed the sunshine.


Now it isn't very late, but I'm tired, so I think I might not write any tonight and just take my bath and go to bed early. I did what I had to, and that's over with for a while. It's a partly cloudy, relatively calm night in the field.


January 4

The eleventh day of Christmas.


This morning, the camera hung up around 9:00. I still don't know what the problem is, all of a sudden. It wasn't too bad, because there was a little bit of sunshine on the mountain.


I fiddled around last night, and it was 1:00 or a little later when I got to bed. I slept, but not very well. I think one of the reasons I don't like TV or movies very well is that sometimes my dreams are even wilder and more interesting than anything I might see when awake. I had a really wild one this morning right before I woke up that left me laughing and shaking my head when I got up. Not that it was funny or anything, it was just really wild. i got up around 10:00.


I knitted the next square, fern, which is the last one on this tier. I was tempted to start the next one, which is a triangle, but I decided not. It was late enough already. If I've counted right, I have 22 more squares and four triangles to go, then I can start the finishing. It's not done by any means, but slowly and doggedly, I'm getting there. I'm not sure how good a job I've done on it, but it's been an interesting thing to knit. I've decided that while I like to be making something, I'm most interested in the process. I think that's why I've gotten back into lace again. There isn't anything else that requires quite as much concentration.


I was going to try to get the trash under control today, but when I started, my back was bothering me and I didn't feel very robust, so I only got one bag filled. I did get the fridge cleaned out. I went downstairs and shopped in my freezer for a few things. And that was about it.


I hope to get to bed a little earlier tonight, because, like it or not, I have to shop tomorrow. Where I go will depend upon how I feel in the morning, I guess. If I feel robust, I will go down to Houghton, but if I feel like I did today, I will just go to Pat's.


I think I may have another slight head cold. At least my sinuses have been draining like mad, day and night, and I don't feel very robust. Well, the only way I could avoid things like that is if I never went anywhere, and that isn't quite possible, even for me.


I was minding my business this afternoon when I heard something on the screen, and there was my pesky squirrel, up at the top, trying to get inside. He gave up quickly, but in the meantime, i heard some mewing behind me, and Jasmine got almost inside the studio, because she wanted to see the squirrel, too. She stood just inside the door for maybe a minute, mewing sadly, and then she walked off. She didn't even run. I don't like to get my hopes up, but I thought that was a good sign.


Wow, I'm having trouble getting my right and left hands in sync tonight. I was going to write a little, but now I don't know.


The weather was blah. Between 3:00 and 4:00 this morning, the wind shifted from the southwest to the north and the temperature rose from 21 to 30. Weird. It stayed right around there until just a little while ago, it rose to 34. The wind was in the 25-30 mph range all day, although it's dying down a bit now. It was mostly cloudy all day, at least after that one little time around 8:00 this morning.


So that was my quiet day, and now it's a cloudy night in the field and the lake is singing softly.


January 3

The tenth day of Christmas.


The camera hung up at around 7:30 this morning, for no apparent reason, and I didn't discover it until 11:30, so for a while this morning we had nice turquoise view. I still don't know why that happens.


I wrote for a while, but this is going really slow, and overnight I started thinking about the other unfinished story. I got to bed around 11:30. I slept well, but I was up frequently. Probably that was because I had fish for dinner last night, and fish is a diuretic, at least for me. Anyway, when I got to bed, the moon was riding high in the west, peeking out of clouds that weren't very thick. It didn't clear up, but the wind and the lake calmed down almost completely overnight. I got up around 9;30 and knitted for quite a while - more lily of the valley. It came out all right, but that square goes really slow.


This morning when I checked the live ships map, The American Century and the Arthur B. Anderson were out of Bete Gris and down the peninsula almost to the canal. It looked like they were staying together. They're gone now, so I suppose they're at Duluth. I finally think I know why ships keep disappearing on the map. Over on the north shore, east of Thunder Bay, and it seems like over in the Apostle islands, as well, I don't think there are any towers that can receive their signals. That's what's so neat about the Pasty tower at Horace Greeley - it can get all sorts of signals, since it's the highest point in the Keweenaw. I suppose it will get old after a while, but I'm still having fun watching the ships move.


The weather was cold and mostly cloudy. It got down to 10 at 8:00 this morning, It got up to 24 briefly, around 7:00 this evening. The wind was still brisk for most of the day, in the 15-30 mph range, but now it's from the southwest. It was clearing a bit at sunset, and when I went to get dinner, Venus was glowing brightly in the southwest, and the sky seemed fairly clear. The moon is someplace over the house where I can't see it without going out.


I did go out briefly this afternoon. I wanted to go to the post office, and it was good that I did, because there was a lot of mail, Ron's gift of coffee, and some pills. There were several magazines, and now I have more stuff to read. Sigh.


So that was my day. I think I might wash dishes tonight. The dishwasher isn't packed, but there are a lot of dishes in it, and I think they get cleaner when it isn't overfull. I do have to take a bath, and either tomorrow or Thursday I have to go shopping. Sigh. I should go to Wal-Mart and Econo, but I might just chicken out and go to Pat's and save the rest of the stuff for some other time.


Now it's a cold, partly clear night in the field, and I think I will read what I wrote yesterday before I totter up to the north end and put myself to sleep. I just can't seem to get enough sleep.


January 2

The ninth day of Christmas


Well, I think it's almost over, but what a lovely storm it was!


I wrote for a while, but as I said yesterday, it's slow going. Then I read ahead a bit to see what else I was going to have to change from the original story, so it was 11:30 before I got to bed. 


It was wonderful. The lake was roaring and the wind was howling and banging against the house and it was really noisy. It didn't keep me awake, but I don't think I slept really deeply, because I had a lot of strange dreams. 


I was awake around 8:30, and I could have gotten up, but I didn't and it was 10:30 before I finally made it out of bed. I did another square on the stole. 


I didn't do a lot, although I did begin to load the dishwasher and I washed a couple of pans that had gotten dirty over the weekend. There is always a lot to read on Mondays, so that took most of the afternoon.


The weather continued almost unabated, and the temperature is dropping. It was around 25 at midnight and it is now 15. The wind peaked yesterday afternoon, but it was 4:00 this afternoon before the sustained winds got below 30 mph and 6:00 before the gusts got below 40 mph. It's still noisy out there, but not quite like it was earlier. We had snow squalls off and on through the day, but I don't think there was any accumulation. It was another good day to hibernate and watch the great out of doors. It's supposed to get really cold tonight - into single digits.


I wish I could figure out where all those ships that suddenly appeared this afternoon had been, but the two guys are still anchored in Bete Gris, and the other ones who were sailing were hugging the north shore east of Thunder Bay, even though they are bound to Detroit and Lake Erie. Makes for a long trip, but they might make it. Now, at 8:00, one guy is south of Isle Royale and looks like he's headed out into the lake. I suppose it's calming down a bit, and it will get calmer overnight.  I think the two ships in Bete Gris were headed for Duluth, which means they have to get out north of Keweenaw, and that might not be too safe until later tonight. I really love that website, because now I can see what all the ships are doing out there and find out who's passing by. 


So now I will read what I wrote yesterday and maybe write a few more pages. It's still a stormy night in the field, and it will be a good one to hunker down under the covers and sleep.


January 1 - New Year's Day

The eighth day of Christmas - the circumcision and naming of Jesus.


Happy New Year, everyone. I hope your new year will be a good one.


Mine started out very slowly. I was in bed shortly after 10:00 last night, and I guess I slept fairly well. I woke up at 12:40, so I guess there were no fireworks, probably because it was snowing. I noticed when I was up that it appeared to be snowing for most of the night. I got up at 7:00 and came down to do some surfing while I ate something, and frankly, even though it had stopped snowing here, I just did not like what I saw of the weather and the snow in Calumet. Then I got caught up in something and when I decided that maybe I would go to church after all, it was too late. So I shrugged my shoulders and went back to bed instead.


I got a couple hours' more sleep and ended up with a very interesting dream. I dreamed that I was in an enormous series of skating rinks, including one that had a huge rounded square marked in the ice, where one could circle around and around. And I could feel my muscles as I skated, although they seemed rather stiff. That was really interesting, because I have not been on ice skates for at least 55 years, and I'm sure if I tried them now, I'd go right down on my backside, even though I skated just fine the first time I ever tried (at age 4 or 5). It was so nice, since the ice was absolutely flat and even and there weren't many other people there. What an interesting dream! I have to credit part of it to Amanda and her blog about skating on Lake Fanny Hooe last week.


By the time I got up for good, it was still snowing and the wind was beginning to rise. We still haven't had much snow, but oh, my, the wind! At the last report (at 6;51) the wind is blowing from the north at 37 mph with gusts to 50 mph! Oh, what a gale! The lake is roaring in base-baritone, with occasional crashes when a rogue wave hits the rocks, there are breakers on my beach, and every now and then I can hear the wind slamming against the house. I'm sure it's noisier up at the north end. The temperature was 33 when I got up at 7:00, but by the time I got up for good, it was down to 30 and it stayed there all afternoon while the wind went crazy. I love to hear Mother Superior when she gets all het up. This is supposed to continue all day tomorrow, and I do wish I could get out to Pebbly Beach to look at the waves. The marine forecast says that waves will be up to 20 ft tonight and again tomorrow. Oh, what fun!


I'm sure it isn't fun for the lakers, of which there are still some in the lake. Everybody is taking shelter somewhere. There are two anchored in Bete Gris, although the Live Ships Map only shows one. There was one anchored there this morning and another on its way in. One is anchored over at Marquette, and there are two anchored in Thunder bay and two behind Isle Royale. Nobody, but nobody, is out in the middle of the lake, not that I can blame them. The marine forecast says gales, storm force gusts, heavy freezing spray and snow showers. Brr! As my mama used to say, pity the poor sailor on a night like this. The only way it could be worse is if the temperature were 30 lower.


But it's so much fun. I love Mother Superior in all her moods, but I particularly love her when she gets wild. She sure lets everybody know who's boss. I think it was probably a night like this when the Edmond Fitzgerald went down, although that was a couple of months earlier.


I spent the afternoon writing, and I got about 3,700 words done. This kind of writing, which is straight composition, is slow going, even when I'm not writing longhand. I keep having to stop and reread a page or two of what I've written in order to go on. The story I'm writing from is no help at all most of the time, since practically everything has changed since I wrote it. That was one of the things that stopped me last night. I needed to think about what was going to happen next, in light of what I'd just written. However, it feels good, and I am so glad that at long last I can write fiction on the computer. It's so much easier to modify and edit what I've written. I doubt I'll ever write longhand again, which is just as well, since my gouty finger makes it really hard to use a pen.


Jasmine was up a couple of times, and once she actually almost made it into the studio, but she peeped, and when I turned around to see her, she ran away under the sofa. I suspect she spends a lot of her time there. Now, why she would peep while she was sneaking into the room with me, I do not know, but then, I guess I don't understand her very well anyway. I spoke to her and even asked her to come and see me, but she ignored all that.


So that was my quiet New Year's Day. I will write some more and then settle down and let Mother Superior sing me to sleep. It's a dark, very windy, very hairy night in the field.


last  updated 02/01/12 08:47 PM