Sunday, January 4, 2015

Back to normal?

Despite one child being sick, another on the emotional roller coaster that comes part and parcel with being a healthy teenager, (Was that putting it delicately enough?) We saw the Hobbit this afternoon.
The movie was long, but in a good way. I'll be the first to admit it, Tolkien liked to do a bit of telling and not showing. Peter Jackson took what was said in the book through exposition and was able to be faithful to the story while making one book last for three movies.
Before you nit pickers get started, let me tell you. The movie doesn't have to be a literal translation of the novel. Many times it goes the other way. Movies skip the parts and key points of stories. We all heard the trope, 'the book was better.' Well, this time it's the other way around. In the book, I couldn't keep all the dwarves straight. Jackson deserves some of the credit, but the rest goes to the actors who portrayed the band of 13. I'd now recognize Thorin Oakenshield, Fili, Kili, and the rest. They became distinct characters worthy of remembrance.
So how geeky are my girls? After the movie they started to try and figure out how old Bilbo Baggins was at the time of the adventure. I reminded them that at the start of the Fellowship of the Ring trilogy, Bilbo Baggins was celebrating his 111th birthday. They're watching the movies now picking up clues from what people say. I've still got all the books and made the offer they should read them.
'But dad, who has the time to read?'
Tell me I was never this bad.
A long time ago, about three years, I gave a book to one of my daughters who prides herself on being a voracious reader. She still hasn't gotten to it. The book? The Stand by Stephen King. I think there is a distinct lack of interest there. Later when she's an adult, she might change her mind. Until then perhaps I should ask for the book back.
Yesterday I upped the recipe for prickly pear mead. My last three bottles of that were a resounding success, but this time I wanted to keep the original color of the fruit, so I juiced them.
This next picture is going to look a little nasty, but keep in mind that this is what it does at the very beginning.
From this
To this
Right now the yeast is doing it's thing. I can count to four in between bubbles coming out of the airlock. In a month I'll transfer it to a glass container for  the secondary process. Add another month for that I should be ready to bottle by the time March rolls around.
More good news: I only used half of what you see in the picture. I have a friend with a bunch of the cacti on his property, so I could get a steady supply of this whenever I want. I also bought one of those Pur water filters for the sink. I can't wait to make some coffee with that. I'm betting it will taste 100% better.
Now that batch will equal about 25 bottles, and I have enough material to do it all over again.
Next up: build a bigger wine rack.
School starts tomorrow. A new semester. Rodeo will start one month from now. My oldest will be heading back to college on the 17th. Time really does fly.


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