Thursday, September 23, 2010

Road Trip, Fall rites..

On The Road, The Gorge
Well, after a fine tour of these Great United States, well okay, just the Western bits, through to Nebraska..I return to write of the excursion. It was loads of fun, exhausting, but fun.
My father died this May, and so my Mother is alone out there on the prairie. We decided it was a good time to drive out and visit, make sure she was okay. Help out, etc..
We had planned on attending the Baker City Oregon Highland Games, and since we were already on the otherside of the state, well hell, why not just keep going?
So we did.

The Cabin, at Rancho-Costa-Plenty
Our amazing friends Devon and Rachael graciously offered their cabin for us to stay in while we visited. They lived in this amazing cabin for 11ish years, until they finished building their own house. Yes, they built the house themselves, with their own hands, tools and love. The Big House is wonderful, don't get me wrong guys.
But I love the cabin. I would live here always if I could I love it that much, cozy, nestled in the aspen, with it's herd of security turkeys ever alert to danger..

Blurry "Action" Shot of Turkey herd..they move damn fast..
The birds sleep high in the trees behind the cabin, safe from predators.
The above was taken as they made their way up the trail to the hill beside the cabin. Where, once they reached the proper high spot on the hill, they launch themselves in a flurry of feathers into the roosting trees. Smart fowl I say, working with gravity, not against it. It's a herd made up of several adult females and their young, long legged gawky teenage birds.

Off to Bed They Go..
Fast little hens, I barely got this shot with my crappy camera..

My Bonney Man and His Pipes
The Highland Games were great fun. We arrived late friday and had to set up during the start of the games, I was worried we would be a problem, but everyone there was just happy we came. The wonderful Marna sent the Boy Scouts out to help us set up. Devon and Dan helped the lads get our smithy set up while I put the forge together.
When my nose started running and my hands turned blue I realised I might need that sweater I had brought just in case. In Eastern Oregon in the high country winter can come in Sept. So people understand how to live with cold, but this was Labor Day weekend, late August.
It had been hot and sunny earlier in the week. High 90's there in Baker, so people were not quite ready for the shock. A cold front had rolled in, rain, snow in the mountains, temps. in the 40's. Were had a fire so we stayed warm, and everyone had a good time anyways. After all, this was more like weather in Scotland.

His Nibs, The Piper
Dan was invited by the Pipe Major of The City Of Trees Pipe and Drum Band to play during the parade..I have never seen my husband more excited or happy. I was very proud of him. They were a great group of folks. Thank you guys and gals, you made my Hubby very happy!

Bellows Boy
We both did demonstrations, meeting the good people at the games, and teaching the craft. We had a young man who was perfect at running the bellows. It is a tricky thing to do, and he caught on quickly. I wish I could recall his name, Thank you Little Boy Scout dude! You were a big help!

I'm too Sexy for My Kilt...
For those of you out there who care this is NOT my family tartan. We are Stewarts, and this is not. Donna our good friend and amazing bagpiper, gave me this kilt as a gift. What is hard is when members of this clan come running up to me arms thrown wide exclaiming how thrilled they are to meet another member of the clan. I just play along, as I don't have the heart to tell them the truth, it has only led to trouble in the past..
Stay tuned for Part Two of this saga..

Since arriving home I have been making apple butter, and canning it..

Fresh apples from my orchard. Lots of apples, the Wassailing back in January worked ! I ended up with three 5 gallon buckets from this dwarf mystery variety alone..

Yes it looks like sludge, but it's really yummy apple butter..ready for canning or eating on fresh toast with melted butter.. Devon cream would be awesome with this..Sadly, some of us can't get proper Devon cream here to go with..sigh..some folks have all the luck.;)