Sunset at 4:25 p.m.

After I bought my house in 2009 I researched the original owners and discovered they still lived in town. I invited them over and they brought photo albums of my house and neighborhood. The above photo is my fireplace in my house being built in the 1950s. I love the warmth of the mason and dog looking at one another in an otherwise dark room lit by a hanging light bulb. Adequate illumination is not all about brightness, but the visual warmth and glow and how it influences our mood. With daylight becoming more scarce I have implemented safe flameless firelight therapy.

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Maine’s Record (& Tree)-Breaking October Storm

We were warned Sunday night that there would be hurricane force winds overnight and into the early morning. I got out of bed at 3:30 a.m. to start the coffee earlier than usual in case we lost power. I went to my utility’s outage report website and saw that there were 50k customers without power, then 65k, and it kept rising every time I hit refresh. Next I went out into the sunroom and looked outside into the darkness in my backyard. I was able to see the faint silhouette of the trees in our woods violently swaying back and forth, in particular one very tall white pine. The “soundtrack” to the scene was very unnerving, like a menacing and sustained roar. I went inside and what I heard next was what no one wants to hear.

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Before the Clocks Turn

It’s almost November yet we’re still picking tomatoes! I’m savoring these days before darkness invades at 4:00 p.m. when we turn the clocks. Soon we’ll pick the remaining green tomatoes, place them in a brown bag to ripen, and Wayne will dismantle the garden. Chippie and her cousins should be going underground for the season once “normal” fall temps set in.  I always have a tough time transitioning during that first week of early darkness, but then I focus on the holidays and it’s yet another part of why I love living in New England. I can’t think of anywhere else I’d rather be for Thanksgiving and Christmas!

Chippie Updates

Chippie is back after having disappeared for a few days, and she is wounded. Shown is before and after. Looks like she was in a fight! She was eating and able to sit, stand and run. But she is obviously shaken and missing tufts of fur. Please if anyone reading this has any suggestions let me know. I am going to contact my vet tomorrow along with two wildlife rehabs. New updates added 10/25.

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Personal Updates

I’ve had some rough days since my last post, but I’ll start with the more upbeat stuff. The photo above is of Wayne looking rather tiny in contrast with the big colorful trees in our woods.

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My Pal, Chippie

One kind of love begets another. Get all the love possible expressed in your life. Love something or somebody, if it’s only a geranium. — Margery Wilson, silent film star and author.

I’ve lived in my house over eight years and while I had always enjoyed seeing chipmunks, this is the first time that I “adopted” one as an outdoor pet or rather, she may have adopted me. It began mid August when I was ill at  home with 101 fever and I was reading in my sunroom. I noticed that she (I don’t know the gender but have come to think it’s female) was taking an active interest in me.

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Homemade Heirloom Marinara Sauce Recipe

Here’s my first of many batches of homemade sauce using a variety of tomatoes from our garden. There’s something somewhat controversial and extra healthy about it, however: I don’t remove the tomato skins! Most if not all recipes will tell you to remove them, but they break down as they cook so they blend right in with the sauce. More importantly, your body will appreciate it because the skins contain a high concentration of carotenoids and flavonols, both of which are antioxidants.

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Our Organic Backyard Tomato Garden in Pictures

It’s been a challenging season for growing tomatoes in Maine due to the long, cold rainy spring we had. For a while looked like we might not have any tomatoes at all, and some of our plants were dying, but now we are enjoying a beautiful bounty! I thought it would be fun to show the progress from start to finish:

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Home Sweet Home

I took the pic above yesterday after Wayne cut the grass and I trimmed the shrubs. Today has been rainy with intermittent rumbles of thunder. I’m definitely a “homebody” and am enjoying this time to relax indoors after a very full and wonderful summer. Here’s how my day looked:

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