Monday, September 29, 2008

Bear With Me!

It's sunny when I open my eyes, supposed to be a nice warm day. The Barometer has been bouncing so I am in considerable pain, with a headache hovering on the edges. Kate may be coming up tonight for a couple of days and I want to be able to enjoy her visit.

The dogs and I weeble out to the garden yard to roll up the beach mats and shower curtain. I have made the decision to pick all the tomatoes in the next day or two. The long term weather forecast is for very cool and wet temperatures which means they will rot if they don't get picked. Even though they are green, I am confident that most of them will ripen.

As I roll up the shower curtain, a large, nasty looking and very angry spider runs at me from the bottom of it, narrowly missing my hand. Yes, I CAN move fast when the occassion warrants it. Who knew that those 8 small feet could actually make a a footstep noise. I whack him to the ground with my walking stick and then stomp him for good measure. Well my adrenalin is pumping!

The grass is quite wet, either it rained overnight or there is a very heavy dew. I want to Rotisserie Grill a roast this afternoon, so Richard sets to work cleaning the big drip tray for me and sets up the Rotisserie. That thing is huge. I swear the spit part of it is 4 feet long and the roast is going to look a bit lonely on it. We talk about our day - Richard is working noon to 8pm. I am going to tidy the house and make Brioche, as well as prepare the roast for grilling. Then, if I have time, I will make some mincemeat tiny pies for Katie to try.

Time for my cappuccino and the news. Boring news it is too, bailout failure, and Canadian Election on every channel. Even Anna isn't making anything I'm interested in. Time to start cleaning the kitchen.

My Brioche dough is mixing in the bread machine - yes, I DID learn from my mistakes of the other day. Why do you ask? Yes, I am being more attentive to what I am doing. This is a recipe from the funny little bread maker - it of the incomprehensible instruction booklet - I have doubled the amount of the ingredients so it will work in my big bread maker. When I lift the lid to check the dough ball, it is just perfect. I guessed correctly at the amounts, oh happy day.

The dogs are out in the garden yard while I am doing all this and Pippi and Mason are really carrying on, barking, running in and out, and generally being...well, dogs. I do my best to ignore them while I work, despite them being determined to drag me outside.

mom, come quick, come see!
ya mom, hurry, come see!
mom, mom, mom, mom...
really, come on mom!

Soon I have two loaves of bread rising in my clear plastic bag on the table and decide it is time to make another foray to the yard to see what all the commotion has been about. Of course they are being quiet now, as if nothing was going on a short while ago. I mosey over to the boat, noticing as I pass that there are 2 Bull's Heart, 2 Yellow Mortgage Lifters and 1 Black Prince tomatoes ripening. Great, Kate can take some home.

Overhead, I hear one of the infamous Muttering Murder of Crows. He is sitting across from me in the Holly tree, grokking, not alarmed, but as if he is trying to get my attention. I look around and see the dogs are just nosing the grass and am thinking about how the grass needs cutting when a faint sound reaches my ears. The sound of a branch snapping.

"Hmmmm, the Crow must be in the plum tree behind the Holly, stealing plums," I think to myself. I walk towards the very end of the fence, in the corner between two potted plants to see if I can see him. Then I hear more branches snapping. My head whips around, looking toward the pear trees eyes go slitty. Yup, there, right there half way up the tree, is that @#$%^&* little Island Black Bear. I back up slowly, then turn and herd the dogs quickly indoors, retrieving my camera.

Back in the corner of the yard, I see he has come down the tree and I rapidly pre-focus the camera and snap 4 quick shots of him. He was really enjoying those pears, and as you can see in the last shot, he is on the ground, behind the tree, eating the ones he tossed down. Triple scrunchy face.

In the house once again, the dogs look at me with accusing glares.

we told you tew come see
you wouln't lissen tew us
we sed it wassa bear

"Yes guys you were right, I should have listened, I know better. Here, have a treat."

tanks Mom

Time to get the roast ready to grill. Oh, boy, um, this isn't as easy as it looks. Wow, that spit REALLY is lengthy isn't it. I try to slide the spit through the roast, to impale it on the large skewers that accompany it, nearly impale my hand instead. Finally get one skewer into the roast - boy this thing is heavy and awkward, really need four hands for this - ok, now to get the other skewer on...hmmmm, let's see if we can stand the spit on it's end and reach up an...ohmyGodlookoutyouaregonnadropit!

I drop the skewer and grab the spit with my other hand. Who's bright idea was it to make the end of the skewer handle rounded instead of flat so you couldn't stand it up to...oh heck, never mind. Finally I get the other skewer into the roast and the roast outside on the grill. Quadruple scrunchy face.

Now the roast is cooking, the bread is baking and I am waiting for Kate. Decide to put potatoes in foil on the grill as well to bake. The roast is done to a turn, the potatoes, perfect of course, the bread fragrant and Kate arrives. Time to enjoy our dinner. And oh boy was is delicious, perfectly cooked roast beef.

After dinner, Kate went to Walmart to get some toothpaste, and came back with a Black & Decker Automatic Bread Machine. There was a sale, she got it half price. I have been working on her to try one for years, and she finally succumbed to my talking. We set about reading the instruction book and soon she has a loaf of bread mixing and baking on the rapid cycle.

Time to go clean up the kitchen. Will talk more tomorrow about the bread.

But just between you and me, I think I have created a monster.

I think she is hooked.

I think her friends will soon be enjoying her bread making skills.


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