Sunday, October 16, 2016

Instant Love

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.  Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Amazon Prime Day, July 12, 2016, I was counted as 1 out of 215,000 people that purchased an Instant Pot. The multi-functional 7-in-1 electric pressure cooker was the top seller of the day. The funny thing is I didn't even know I needed one, heck, I had never even heard of an Instant Pot and I wasn't even a Prime Member. But I got one anyway because, well, I did need a new rice cooker.

The first thing the User Manual recommends is to boil water as a test run. Thataway, you get used to the device, it's features, and to make sure "your unit is working perfectly". I decided to watch it work perfectly from a safe distance.

The Instant Pot is amazing. It was especially perfect for summer cooking when it was just too hot to cook. I could set it, forget it, and spend my time outdoors.

Beef Stew

3:30 pm

6:05 pm

 Roast chicken

Browned on Saute Mode in the IP

Fall off the bone tender

Not Re-fried Beans! (recipe included with IP) and chicken soft tacos

I have also made Spanish rice, Pot Roast, Chile Colorado, St. Louis Style ribs (check out Flo Lum YouTube videos), hard boiled eggs, steamed veggies (potatoes, artichokes) slow cooked Kalua pig, Minestrone soup, and the easiest pan gravy.

I love my Instant Pot. The Man loves my Instant Pot.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Summer, Goodbye

Fall is here. For the most part the days and nights are getting cooler though you wouldn't know it from last week when San Luis Obispo peaked at 108°, it was the highest temperature across the nation.

The cooler weather makes for great baking weather. I spent the last two days in the kitchen churning out yummy goodness: Zucchini Bread, Brownies, and Fruit Cobbler. Most of it is being given away but I've made sure to save a slice and bite for The Man. Oh, and of course the Cobbler needed to be paired with homemade Vanilla Ice Cream. Of course.

Our newest additions to the herd and flock have settled in and now that Mama Legs and Edie have proclaimed themselves "Queen of All", the rest of the critters seems to have resigned themselves to their ruling. I'm just grateful the daily drama of bickering and fighting have subsided.

We've had losses over the summer and said goodbye to our two good hens, Baby and Tandy, and also, Molly the cat. They were all very good girls.

Another loss, surprising to say the least, happened last Monday night at 11pm. We were suddenly awakened by an immense CRAAACK.

Mattie asleep on the floor next to me jumped up. I jumped out of bed. The Man jumped out of bed after seeing a cloud of dirt drift past our open window.

Armed with flashlights we went outside to view the damage. When I came back in the house a few minutes later Mattie looked at me expectantly. "A branch fell down." She turned around and headed back to her bed. To her retreating backside I said, "A really big branch." And it was.

We were up at first light to survey the damage and begin the clean up in the cool morning air. This time we got off easy. The only damage sustained was a section of wood on top of the retaining wall.

So here's the thing: it's called Summer Limb Drop, a phenomenon that happens in late summer, quite suddenly and without warning, and it can be catastrophic. During a hot day the oak trees suck up a whole bunch of water and release the moisture through their leaves (evapotranspiration). But when the temperature difference is so great - 100° during the day and quickly down to the 50's at night - the oaks don't get rid of the excess water, leaving their branches heavier than normal and apparently too much to bear. The Man noticed how water-logged the branch was when he started cutting the thick limb, it dripped with water.

Now that we know about it we'll add Summer Limb Drop to our BE WARY LIST (right under Mountain Lions and Rattlesnakes).

~ ~ ~

And here's a note from me:

After much thought and consideration I have decided to spend a little less time on the SLO Yarns Blog. Currently (and for the past four years) I have posted a story every week. Starting this week I'll be cutting back to every other week. I think this will allow me more time to be truly out and about and I'm hoping to spend more time with The Man 2-Up. Besides, except for the occasional giant tree limb falling out of the sky not too much happens around here. wink wink

~ Lynn

Saturday, September 24, 2016

SnapShots: Back Roads Idaho


Bannock Ghost town


Yankee Fork Gold Dredge

the Lewis and Clark Trail,

rode through beautiful 

met up with
current friends,

made many new

Hanging garlands of wild hop vines

Participants in the IDBDR video (Seattle, WA)

Stefan and Jayne (Forest Grove, OR)

and graciously
the kindness and hospitality of 
fellow travelers.

BBQ Chicken with Richard and Terri (Longmont, CO)

Who left this on my picnic table?

Surprise! from the C. Family (Missoula, MO)

August 20, 2016 - September 4, 2016

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Back Roads Idaho: Something Else

In the middle of August, The Man headed out of town for a two-week motorcycle adventure. On an early Saturday morning, three motorcycles were loaded up, gear was stored, and after a hearty breakfast the four riders were on their way.

A few hours after they left, a bald eagle flew over the barn. An astounding sight, it was a very good omen for the four riders.

Three riders were planning to traverse the Idaho Backcountry Discovery Route (IDBDR). "The IDBDR is a south-to-north route across the state of Idaho covering over 1,250 miles of mostly non-paved track".  It begins in Jarbidge, Nevada, across the Idaho Rocky Mountains, and ends at the Canadian Border. The DVD and maps purchased from the BDR organization cited the businesses servicing the route for lodging, food, and fuel.

Backcountry Discovery Route

The fourth rider, The Man, had a different adventure in mind. His plan was to have no plans; a day-by-day journey along the scenic back country roads of Idaho.

The Man dropped off the three riders in Jarbidge, Nevada, then headed to Boise, Idaho. He had made arrangements (Park & Fly) to keep his truck and the U-Haul trailer at the Extended Stay Hotel for 14 days. (On the last day, Arrin, one of the riders would meet him in Boise for the return trip home. The other two riders, J. and X. (husband and wife) - would continue on their travels for another two weeks.)

Before he left home The Man had carefully packed his KLR motorcycle with everything he thought he would need for camping in the Idaho back country: water, backpacking food (just add boiling water and eat right out of the bag!), a small cook stove, and as much tools as he could carry. In addition, he carried bear deterrent spray and a small PLB (Personal Locator Beacon) - just in case.


As suspected cellphone coverage was spotty or nonexistent. When he could The Man called home and reported his current location, where he might camp for the night, and what direction he was heading.

Thataway I would know his last known whereabouts, you know, just in case.

It was a memorable trip, along the way he . . .  to be continued. . . . 

~ ~ ~

NPR Fresh Air Interview with Terry Gross and Tom Hanks 8/29/16

Gross: What were your favorite TV shows that made a lasting impression on you?
Hanks: "Then Came Bronson." It was on for one year. It starred Michael Parks as a iconoclastic reporter who gives up everything and rides across the country on a motorcycle. It was like a one-man version of "Route 66." It was...
Gross: (Laughter).
Hanks: ... It was a very odd television show that was on for one season on NBC, and I just thought it was the hippest thing in the world because sometimes there'd be no dialogue in one of the shows. It was not like an episode of "Mannix" or "Medical Center" or "Gunsmoke." It was something else.

Taking a trip?
Where to?
Oh, I don't know. Wherever I end up, I guess. 

Jim Bronson
Then Came Bronson 9/17/69

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Three Bags Full

Baa baa black sheep 
have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir,
three bags full.

One for the Master, one for the Dame,
and one for the little boy that lives down the lane.
Baa baa black sheep have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir,
three bags full.
Baa baa white sheep
have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir,
three needles full.

One to mend a jumper, one to mend a frock,
and one for the little girl with holes in her socks.
Baa baa white sheep have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir, 
three bags full.

Baa baa grey sheep
have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir,
three bags full.

One for the kitten, one for the cats,
and one for the guinea pig to knit some woolly hats.

Baa baa grey sheep have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir,
three bags full.

YouTube gank: Baa Baa Black Sheep with Lyrics
Kids Songs and Nursery Rhymes by EFlashApps

Cleaning and Reorganizing Craft Room, August 2016

First, I moved everything out of the Craft Room and yarn closet. (Lets just say it's a good thing we have two spare bedrooms and a spare bathroom.)

I added a chair from downstairs and made a Sit-N-Knit corner and moved the Schacht Cricket 10" and Flip 20" to make a Loom-Along wall.

All the yarn was inspected, inventoried, and - gasp - placed back in the closet.
Yowzer! It's SABLE.

I'm very pleased with the results. Even The Man comes in to sit for a bit.

At the end of the day, it's a nice place to be.