Sunday, December 31, 2006

It's New Year's Eve on the Homestead!

Wow, can you believe another year has come and gone? If you've been keeping up with our website you know that we've been busy on our homestead. Our house in town has been on the market since April, and still not sold. But we know that, just like everything else we've ever done during our married life, we were a few months late getting it on the big boom in home sales. About the time we listed our house, the market went flat. But we're not giving up. We feel certain it will sell in 2007 and we will become full time homesteaders. Say a little prayer, face your prayer rug east, or sacrifice a virgin for us - whatever you think works. We'd sure appreciate it.

This is a really nice, long weekend for us. We came out to the homestead Friday night, and won't be leaving until Tuesday. Monday is a holiday for us, and Tuesday is a National Day of Mourning for President Ford. So we get an extra long weekend. And lest you think we would take advantage of the time without honoring President Ford, let me inform you that not only have we been watching coverage of the pre-funeral happenings all weekend, we've spent a fair amount of time talking about Gerald Ford. He was truely a good man, even though he was an "accidental president" if we ever had one. The poor man just wanted to be Speaker of the House. But when Spiro Agnew found himself in trouble, Mr. Ford was next in line for Vice President. Then, wouldn't you know it, President Nixon gets all involved in that pesky little "Watergate" incident and decides to bail, leaving his presidency to the next in line, Gerald Ford. So President Ford shows there is hope for all of us. Just be in the right place at the right time, and who knows? Maybe you'll be the next President of the United States.

At any rate, Bernie and I are really appreciative of our long weekend on the homestead. And we've spent it being really busy.

We spent about 6 days with my family in Georgia. We had a wonderful time seeing the family and eating way too much. While we were there we hooked up with my Aunt 'Net and Uncle James. It's been a while since we've seen them, and it was great visiting for a little while. A little while ago, they lost thier daughter, Sandra. Sandra was just a few years older than I, and she was a beautiful person, inside and out. She had such a great sense of humor and was so full of life. It was such a tragedy to lose her so young. Aunt 'Net and Uncle James offered us a china cabinet that was Sandy's and it was such an honor, we could not turn it down. It is quite old and was not in good shape, as it had been through a flood. But we brought it back with us and put it in the homestead. I spent a lot of time yesterday cleaning it up. These pictures show the before and after. It's really a beautiful piece of furniture and we are sure proud to have it here. Try to look beyond the horrible wall - that's the Great Divide I talked about earlier. It's a work in progress.....

Aunt 'Net and Uncle James also gave us some very old Log Dogs. They are really precious and I spent a lot of time today cleaning them up. I used an angle grinder and grinded away the rust. then I spray painted them with some Rust Stop Enamel. They really came out great! And now they grace our hearth. Take a look at the process.

We also spent a fair amount of the day installing a solar electric fence around our beehives. You may recall from a previous post, we have bears in this area. So we decided a fence would help protect our beehives from the bears . Putting up the fence wasn't as difficult as I feared, but that's coming from me, the one who didn't have to actually drive in the fence posts by hand. That job landed squarely on poor Bernie's shoulders. But he did a great job, and I was there beside him every inch of the way! Check out the website for the pictures and the details.

So 2006 comes to an end, and we look forward to what 2007 brings our way. I hope that each of you has a healthy, happy, and prosperous year. And I hope you'll check back here often to keep up with what 2007 has in store for me and Bernie.

Live free and BEE free,
Penny

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Your holidays sound wonderful. I'm kind of glad they are over, but I'm somewhat of a Scrooge.

I hate to admit that I was politically unaware at the time of Ford's presidency. I was in my late teens, early twenties and had much more important things to do (or so I thought at the time). I remember watching some of the Watergate hearings and thinking that Maureen Dean looked extremely odd. Like a doll. When Ford pardoned Nixon, I had a vague sense of someone getting away with something bad. Nothing more. Now, in hindsight, I think that no matter what one's opinion of the Ford presidency, that he was the man that we needed at the time. We were steal healing from Viet Nam and reeling from the resignation of a President. I don't think we needed any more, and it was Ford that was able to help us put it behind us.

The bee project looks fascinating ! Alot of hard work putting that fence up: it is a good thing you were there to 'supervise'. I said to Chainsaw, "Wouldn't it be too cool to have a set of beehives" (are they called a 'set', a 'farm', what?). Anyway, he seemed less than enthused.

And oh yes, Bernie does look at 'cute as button' in his little outfit. He's just the bees knees.

Penny said...

I wasn't all that politically aware back then either, but I was really fascinated with the whole Nixon presidency. My father was in the army and spent 2 terms in Viet Nam. That may have contributed to my interest in that political era. Much of it was lost on me at the time, but I do remember a sense of peace, not only by the end of our participation in the war, but by the stability brought with Mr. Ford's presidency. We watched the funeral proceedings today on TV. Very touching. I found myself hoping that Kissinger, Brochaw, President Bush Sr. and President Bush Jr. had taken the time to say those nice things to President Ford before he passed.

We just call our 6 beehives "beehives". But then, we're not very creative. We visited with them this afternoon before we left the homestead to resume our "real lives" here in town. They were out on the front of the hives enjoying the sun. Well, most of them seemed to be enjoying it. A few of them seemed to be attacking a sad looking little bee. Bernie thinks they're getting rid of all the drones now that winter is here. We've been studying and learn they do that every winter. The drones are the ones that mate with the queen all summer. That is their only job. Well, they all close up business for the winter and don't need to queen to be laying eggs, so they kill off all the drones. Sounds rather harsh doesn't it? But it seems to work for them. It also makes me have a little soft spot for the drones. I'm sure I'll forget all about them when the honey starts to flow.

You and Chainsaw come on down for a weekend and I'm sure he'll fall in love with the bees. I've gone from being terrified of them to being quite enamoured with them. They are just so darn cute. And we get right up to the hives and they just seem to accept us. I'd kiss everyone of them, but I heard they really react fiercely to that.....

Penny

Anonymous said...

I'm curious to know if Bernie had you do the "touch test" on the electric fence to see if it was working!

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