Lots of clever titles, come and gone

I've gotten back in the infuriating and unproductive habit of mental posting. John is in L.A. for a week, which means I'm flying solo with the kids, but I kind of like it, in spite of adventures that have included power and phone outages, a possibly broken toe (mine), a near miss with a New York State Trooper (Merry Christmas, again), several episodes of pee on the floor (child, not puppy), one mysterious animal skeleton on the mudroom floor and the joy of tax prep. I've had one glass of wine since the H left, and I think that's VERY impressive.

Meanwhile, bucolic joys continue.

Witness my chickens, my commute, and my view. Life could be much, much worse.


Sunset redux

A few weeks ago I posted a picture of one of our sunsets, proclaiming said sunsets of unending beauty and constant variation. But the picture kind of sucked. So here's another, better one.

Yesterday, unusually, showed us no sunset at all. For the first time either John or I could remember for the 4th of July, it was pouring rain. Not even lightning and thunder to stand in for the drowned-out fireworks. So we grabbed the kids and headed off to Great Barrington for dinner. With no particular plan, we decided to try a Mexican place that we'd heard was good. Unfortunately, what folks here think of us good Mexican food can be pretty awful (witness the much-extolled Mexican Radio restaurant in Hudson, which is so bad that even the kids aren't happy with their quesadillas.) Phew. This place was actually good--decent sauces, good refried beans, and margaritas better than those at the place we always went to in L.A. None of it was amazing, but all of it was good enough to help the homesick Angelenos perk up.

We have been homesick lately. We've had lots of visiting friends which is wonderful, but also a reminder of how many people we've left behind. Saying goodbye, again, is hard on all of us, even though we wouldn't ever pass up the opportunity to see our buddies or to show them why we're not insane for making this move. (It is to all of their credit that none of them have made us feel nuts, even if that is what they believed--for this, we all thank all of you.) John also went to L.A. last week for work, which seemed to make him doubly homesick, for homes old and new. (He did, however, get to eat both real sushi--definitely not abounding here--and Mexican, so no sympathy, really, for him.)

On the other hand, our new life continues to delight, at least me. We have chickens now, nearly three weeks old, pecking away in one of the stalls in the barn. Six guinea hens (apparently champion tick-eaters, which recommends them here in the Lyme Disease capitol of America), 3 Leghorns (white egg layers), 4 Rhode Island Reds--3 hens and one rooster, Jolly (or, as the Babe calls him for self-evident reasons, "Poopy Butt")--for brown eggs, and 7 Araucanas, six hens and a boy, now named Striper, for their gorgeous, Martha Stewart-endorsed pale blue and green eggs. It takes about five months for a hen to begin to lay, so it will be late fall or even early winter before ours are ready, which means that we may not see much from them until next spring. But they're sweet, and soon enough I'll have a use for the beautiful pitchfork and overalls my L.A. girlfriends gifted me with at one of my farewell parties. The kids are really into them--as though we have 20 new pets in our family, and I suppose we do, though I have been known to insist that at some point, we'll be eating some of them. I suspect I'll reverse that position, as more of them gain names. Chicken pix to come.