Saturday, November 22, 2014


Sam likes to decorate our porch with orange lights for Halloween and blue lights for Christmas. Usually I'm not a big fan of any Christmas decorations until after Thanksgiving, but we were too busy to get the lights up for Halloween, so I didn't mind when Sam put up the blue lights this week already.

This photo looks pretty interesting on my phone. I hope it has a similar effect on the computer.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Venison sukiyaki

Chris brought over some venison from a deer he harvested last week, and we're making Wisconsin-style sukiyaki for dinner.

Venison, carrots, cabbage, tofu, daikon, bean sprouts, mushrooms, leeks, shallots, and scallions coked in a soy sauce-based broth and dipped in raw egg (or not, if you're Sam).


Thursday, November 20, 2014


Is it weird to be taking photos of the wall in the bar bathroom? Probably. But I do enjoy reading the messages during the break in Thursday Night Popcorn Tavern Trivia.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Curling Night

Curling is our winter sport, and Wednesday is our curling night.

Curling is great because it is so social as well as being a lot less taxing on the body than Ultimate. We have a good time winning some games, losing some games, and laughing at the horrible arena ice where the only good shots are lucky shots.

Tonight my team decided that the term for having a stone in the winning position, "shot rock," should be the name of an energy drink.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Lights Over Lencois

It's taken five months, but we finally hung Simone's beautiful mosaic key holder in the kitchen.

I do plan on getting to that part of the trip eventually on this blog, but the short version is that our hostess Simone in Lencois makes fantastic mosaics, and we bought this from her as a reminder of the wonderful time we had there and the hospitality we received at Surya Chapada.

We also added some lights to the wall to brighten up the cooking area in a festive way. We'll see if they stay past the holidays.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Secret Santa

I came home from tutoring tonight to find this baseball glove on my garden post. I'm going to call it a secret Santa gift for Millie, even though I'm pretty sure I know who left it.

Millie has only three toys: a bone, a Kong, and a baseball mitt. The last one wears out the soonest, and many of our friends know to look out for leather mitts at garage sales and at Goodwill.

I think they're a good, cheap chew and tug toys, but I always hate the first few days as Millie pulls the stuffing out and leaves it around the house.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Mildred the Lion

We put up the window plastic today, and Millie took the opportunity of our distraction to start licking her wound.

As punishment, she got the cone and a little window tape decoration.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

From the Cellar

It's the first weekend we've been in La Crosse with nothing really scheduled in a very long time.

So we played it by ear, cleaned the house, tried to fix the frozen rain barrel situation, and ended up hanging out with friends for both lunch and dinner.

Dinner involved a visit to our friend's cellar for some special beers. Of the four, the last was the best. Let me absolutely recommend the Les Trois Mousquetaires Dopplebock.

Friday, November 14, 2014


One of Sam's ancestors was a prolific quilter and rug maker, and Sam inherited much of her work.  Our wood floors are covered in her oval rugs, and we use the quilts every winter on our bed and to snuggle under on the couch.

In the future, I'd like to hang a few of the quilts on the walls, because the work is so good and some of the patterns are so interesting.  In the meantime, I thought I'd take photos of the ones we use most often, so that we have a record of some of the wonderful work before they wear out.

Here are two of the less interesting ones, pattern-wise, but the squares are so small, they obviously would have taken quite a lot of work to make.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

With the Fishes

For the past two years, I have put out rain barrels at my house. Two of the rain barrels have no tops, and so I use goldfish in the barrels to keep the mosquitoes from hatching.

Last year the fish went away when I emptied the barrels. This year, I saved the two remaining fish and am attempting to overwinter them with my plants.

It seems that I spent too much time thinking about the fish, however, and not enough time actually emptying and winterizing the rain barrels. Winter has come early, and the remaining water is already frozen in the barrels. I'm really hoping for a few days thaw, or I'm going to end up with some cracked rain barrels come spring.