Wednesday, December 4, 2013


It's never ending. There are a lot of things that go on at home, while your not there, that you have to take care of when you do get there.

For instance, the resident spiders didn't get my memo that Halloween was over, and so they kept decorating for me. I have had what felt like 3000 spider webs to take down and clean up, along with the little bug carcasses they had caught.

About 2 1/2 months worth of dust to wipe off the furniture and floors. You wouldn't think an unlived in house would get so dusty. But there were monster dust bunnies on the floor under the bed. No wonder we were so sniffly the first couple of mornings!

We've had the annual infestation of lady bugs and, unfortunately, stink bugs, that come with each fall. Why do they move indoors? I vacuumed up a number of them till they were not so noticeable. And now I just use a Kleenex to get the stink bugs. The lady bugs....well....I'm at the kitchen table and there are currently three or four I can spot on the ceiling. Aren't they supposed to be good luck or something? Still waiting for that luck to show up. ;)

Leaves to sweep off the front walk, bird feeders that have stood empty for weeks had to be refilled, branches to pick up from the yard, and about a million burrs to pull out of neglected manes.
 I could have shot him. He's lucky I love him so much!

My friend Shirley suggested Armor All, and my sweet husband snuck out and took care of this problem while I was away from the house, texting me a picture of a sleek maned pony later in the afternoon. I love them both, the man and the horse!

And just when you think your all done and caught up, you have a morning event like today. Malcolm's jacket was all dirty from yesterday so he wanted his vest from the front closet. It's a little closet in the front living room corner where I keep our nicer coats and things like that that we never use, hanging up so they won't be wrinkled in case we ever do want to wear them.

I retrieved said vest, carried it out to Malcolm, and as I handed it too him, something looked odd.

So I returned to the closet, threw open the door, and rifled through the coats to discover that....
they were all covered in mold!
So I've been spot cleaning coats this morning, and I guess that closet door will have to remain open, which will not be very pretty.

Our line of work requires that our house stand empty for extended periods. So basically, in some respects, its like living in a vacant house, and dealing with the problems that come with it. Mold probably isn't helping our allergies! Another thing for me to keep my eyes open for.

On the bright side, we are officially 1 year 1 month residents....and still no MICE! I have caught 2 in the course of the past year.  But to me that's like standard house quota. A small miracle in an almost 100 year old farmhouse! I'm beyond thrilled! I'll deal with the mold! Just keep the mice away!!!! I've had my fill of houses with chronic mouse issues! It's SO NICE to come home and NOT have to clean up their messes EVERY TIME we're home! Or feel my skin crawl wondering what they have been walking on and fouling!

Malcolm's dirty jacket: It was filthy and musty smelling because yesterday he and Dad and a couple of hired guys spent there day here...
For as long as I can remember, my parents have wanted to buy an old log cabin and put it in the woods by their house. And finally, after years of dreaming, Dad found this 100+ year old log cabin near Lynchburg, TN, and bought it, and the guys went up yesterday to disassemble it...
...and load it on our flatbed trailer and bring it home for reassembly (later in the Spring).

And Malcolm's jacket was filthy from crawling around underneath the floor and just from general cabin disassembly work. But it's in the washer now, and the cabin is going to be lots of fun to play in!

The family came to our house for Thanskgiving last week. It was so nice and relaxing to not have to go somewhere, and to have our house full of family! We took some family pictures while we were all here. And that, as I'm sure you know, is always good for some laughs. But we did end up with quite a few good ones, and a great one of all of us together! Tripods and camera's with self timers are really handy!
We brought Fancy home this past weekend. She's been at a friends house since shortly after her foal was born. I didn't want her and the baby home alone in case problems arose, so a close family friend offered to "babysit" for me. They got so attached that I was almost worried I wasn't going to get my horses back! In the end I did get to have Fancy back. But they couldn't let the baby go. So they bought him from my and named him Montana, since that's where he started his life journey. They hadn't quite weaned him, so it was a bit of a traumatic separation. The first morning he got turned out, he apparently went running around the barn looking for Mom. Hopefully he's settled in with his other friends there by now. For Fancy's part, I only heard her calling to him a few times during the first night. Since then she's been happily munching hay and laying her ears back at Sky. She thinks he's a pest. And she's pretty much right. But I love him.

We have a new farm critter! Last year we had a black cat that was always being seen off on the fringes. But he'd scamper away the minute he saw us. We called him "Spook" because he was so easily spooked. We haven't seen Spook in several months. When we got home last week, we both noticed a gray cat slinking around in barns and fields. He wouldn't run when he saw us, but he wasn't interested in having us near either. We started referring to him as "Slink." I tried to visit one morning and he sat and watched me till he decided I was too close, at which point he trotted off into the woods.
Well the next morning I was out at the corrals feeding horses and heard a cat meowing. I looked up and at the far side of the corral, here came Slink, at a quick trot, meowing all the way, directly up to my feet, where he proceeded to use my leg as a stretching post. I don't know what all the slinking was about! Maybe he just needed time to decide if he approved of us or not. Because he really wanted to be loved on that morning!
He sends mixed messages though, because he loves your scratching him and then he'll suddenly turn and try to bite. Just a light bite, but still. That was the only morning we've been graced with his attention. I've seen him a couple more times but there was noisy equipment being used and he didn't care for it and left. I hope he'll stick around. We enjoy having a farm cat. I just hope he'll stick to mice and leave my song birds alone.

The girls are super ultra happy to be home. They raced in the door the first night we were here, and within 3 minutes ( no exaggeration) Ella had found her favorite "froggy" and was working the squeaker over. She loves that toy!
We've kept a fire going since we got home. It helps keep the chill out and supplements the heating system. Plus it's just nice to sit by, which is pretty much what the girls!
After Thanksgiving, I put up a few Christmas decorations. My heart really wasn't in it, but I know when I come home again for Christmas, I'll enjoy having them up. So I put up my Christmas village that hasn't been out in years and years...
...and I put the nativity up on the mantel, so we can enjoy it and be reminded daily of what Christmas is really about...
...and I put up my new pencil tree that I bought at Sears. I've wanted a skinny tree for several years now, to use for my collection of bird ornaments. And when we were at Sears shopping for a new appliance, I saw this one and LOVED it! I've been waiting for the perfect one, and this was it. So it's in it's corner now and decorated and it's perfect! A nice tree that doesn't dominate the room.
At Sears shopping for an appliance? For a couple years now I've been doing battle with this fridge we have had since our wedding. It's been awesome! Eleven years of great to decent service and that even after standing in a foot of water during our flood a few months after our wedding! Kenmore makes a good product! What can I say?
But the last couple years of use, it's gotten temperamental. I'll come home and things in the freezer have obviously thawed and refrozen. Or I'll wake up one morning and the fridge part will be 50 degrees inside, and the next morning my produce will be frosty frozen. And I'm tired of the battle, and I got mad about it and decided it was time to replace it. Quite by accident, it happened on the brink of all the Black Friday sales! And so I learned a lesson! If your going to replace big dollar items, hold off till Thanksgiving! The sales were excellent!
My plans to paint.....have been put on hold again. Just not feeling like bothering with it right now. Of course we'll be here a few more days. So I might get started. Who knows? If not, then maybe over Christmas break. Right now it just feels like a bigger job than I want to tackle. Instead I've been washing floors on my hands and knees because I can't figure out any other way to clean 100 year old wood floors without risking tearing splinters out of them with a mop, or leaving a million strings hanging in them. Ideas? Because my knees would appreciate another alternative!

It was so cold when we first got home! It snowed one day, flurries all day long though they didn't stay on the ground. And the day we got home was cold and drizzly. We came home all icy.
But it has warmed up gradually. It's soggy this week, but not freezing, which is kind of nice. Good weather for staying indoors by the fire, puttering around the house.
Which is what I'm going to go do now.
Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!


  1. What a great catch-up post. I really feel for you with the closet full of mold. We came out to the farm one day this fall, and every jacket and pair of boots in our walk-out basement were covered in mold. Thankfully Big Daddy hauled everything outside, cleaned it off, hung it on the fence to air out - then bought a new dehumidifier which he set to run constantly for about a month - even when we weren't here. As much as I hate spraying chemicals, we used about two cans of Lysol all over the basement and the stuff that had gotten moldy. Fortunately that worked, and we'll know to set up the dehumidifier in about June next year.

  2. Happy (belated) Thanksgiving. Merry Christmas. All I can think every time I see your home is G'night John Boy, g'nite Mary Ellen......
    Looks like a very productive Homecoming!