Saturday, March 21, 2015


My girls are in the kitchen baking bread. Mom and daughter standing practically back to back. Pouring, measuring, mixing, and cleaning. Good thing they work well together. Moving like choreographed dancers, except with blenders.
The Oreo truffles are done. They'll pour the chocolate on them last. Six loaves are on the table next to three bowls of rising dough. A few minutes ago I washed and dried the dishes in order to give them more room. 
Note to me: My dream kitchen will be bigger and include a butcher block food prep station.
Today's racking went well. The elderberry mead is sitting next to my desk.
A very deep purple
 Back in the fall, a good friend dared me to make elderberry mead. My first attempt at the prickly pear had been a resounding success. Yea, for following directions!
Looking back, I think my buddy was trying to put a Monty Python spin on things. Perhaps this means I should refer to this batch as 'your mother was a hamster.' I'll think of a better name later on.
The rest of Lady Jane's Time Out I'm saving. This week saw me taking three and four bottles at a time to voluntary taste testers. With their input I can make the next batch better.
Today I cleared off a few shelves in the garage to make room for the bottles I'm collecting. There's over 30 of them now, so I can afford to be picky about what I'm using. At first I thought the screw tops were responsible for the breakages and popped corks. Looking over in the corner, I can see that's not the case. Clear bottles show off the mead's color better, so I'll be using them whenever I can. this morning I finished scrubbing the labels off except for two. What makes these bottles noteworthy to me is for one, they're clear and have a distinctive top to them.
Go home bottle, you're drunk
They also have a silk screened label I can't scrape off. Acetone and paint remover have no effect. A razor blade and steel wool were slightly more effective. I considered getting Mueratic acid, the stuff they use to etch concrete with, but I'm holding off until a better solution is suggested. (hint, hint)

For the last few weeks I've been seeing a chiropractor to help fix my nerve pinched arms. If I hold them in one place for too long, they fall asleep. The fact that I've been typing for about 20 minutes and I can still feel all my fingers tells me something is working. I'm also going to have to stop the visitations for a bit. We took a pay cut with my wife's job change and that threw the budget into the toilet. Admittedly I was angry and depressed about it for a few days, but this means I've got to double down and try harder to get things done. It also means cutting back on some things.
In eight weeks time the wife and I will be driving to Colorado to pick up my oldest. I don't want to say events went bad for her first flight out of the nest. In fact, I think they went rather well. She wanted an adventure and judging by the conversations we've had, she got one. Be careful what you wish for...
Thirteen weeks until our vacation getaway. I suppose I should book that time off. Driving to get the kid in May. Vacation in June. Yeah, I saw that one as well. In all honesty I didn't think I was going to be working at Lowe's by the time summer rolled around. There's a bunch of other stuff happening in between all that. My youngest's passport needs to be renewed, we should get on that right now. That bread being made? It's for a fundraiser. Middle child is trying to raise money for a church mission trip to Haiti. So far I believe she is halfway to her goal. It might be more, but I'm not sure.

Using Open Office to finish up my book has been a sort of blessing/ pain in the ass.
There's a neat feature that allows you to save it under a .doc format which is highly accepted among publishers. It also has a tendency to put spaces and gobblygook where you least expect them to. So that means I'm going through things double and triple checking them. Also keep in mind I'm doing this on my lunch hour. I'm also doing it in the late hours of the evening, which is partially why I haven't updated. I'm not at my sharpest late at night. This isn't something you can multitask. That's why I go ecstatic over getting six hours together. One has to enjoy the little things in life.

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