This And That


While the beautiful colors provided by the trees is pretty much gone, there is much beauty to be found in the incredibly blue sky on cold clear days, the remnants of (now) dried flowers and foliage on bushes and plants, the landscapes that are more exposed now that leaves have dropped, and, of course, lights!  Our Christmas lights are up!!

Honestly, I probably would have had them up and on by the first week of November but my oh-so-practical husband convinced me I needed to wait until Thanksgiving.  I get it.  The season is so exploited as it is but I didn't want to push it necessarily, instead I wanted to enjoy it for just a bit longer this year.  But I waited.

I had marked on our calendar "Christmas decorating!" for Thanksgiving morning.  I wanted the lights on to spread holiday cheer for those traveling home at the end of the day.  And so that's what we did.

After I wrote the last post sharing that Oliver had successfully recovered from pneumonia back to the vet we went.  He began drinking and urinating quite excessively - drinking more than double what would be normal for him.  He was tested for kidney disease and Cushing's (which is what I thought it was because he was more hungry than normal as well).  He tested positive for the beginning stage of kidney disease and negative for Cushing's.  The problem, however, was that he shouldn't have the excessive thirst that early in the stage.

What we came to find out is that he has diabetes insipidus.  It's a rare disorder and, thankfully, easily controlled with a medicated eye drop.  A very expensive eye drop (of course), but an eye drop nonetheless.  We don't know the exact cause (ADH deficiency or brain tumor) without putting him through more testing and we'll likely leave it at that.  He's been through so much.  

And so, we have added another medication to his daily regimen.  Poor guy.

In all of this he began having issues sleeping, again, and we are still trying to transition him back to sleeping in his bed and allowing us at least 6 hours of sleep per night.  He is now finally doing pretty well with it.

The garden is buttoned up, the outdoor furniture, grill, etc. is put away for the year and we are starting to prep for the winter ice and snow that will soon make its appearance.   We received a dusting but that doesn't really count, does it?

Remember all of those Asian pears from our tree that I put up in the freezer?  Well, I made an absolutely delicious apple cobbler with a small portion of them (photo above).  Because they are so sweet, I included a couple of granny smith apples for their tartness and it was perfect.

I've also been making large batches of soups and stews that store well in the freezer giving us lunch and dinner options that just need to be thawed and heated.  I found a product called Souper Cubes that is a silicone freezer tray that offers 1 cup and 2 cup serving portions. (affiliate links) It's perfect for soup, sauces, stews, etc.  I use them all of the time.  I freeze up the soup, etc. and then transfer the frozen cube to either a freezer-safe container or freezer bag.  Then I can take out 1 or more portions whenever we want that particular soup, stew, etc. and let it thaw in a bowl in the refrigerator overnight.

It's holiday season which means our soap and skincare business is humming right along.  We aren't participating in any craft shows this year but our farmers market remains busy and we have our products at the Brookside Museum Artisan Market up until Christmas Eve.  And of course, our online store continues to bless us with constant business.  I'm shipping boxes daily.  It's been a good holiday season so far.  We'll be taking two weeks off at Christmas and New Years and we'll be ready for it.

I hope this finds you doing well and enjoying all of the beauty of the changing of seasons.


  1. Your decorations look so pretty. We haven't put up our tree yet and will do it this week. Have a good week.

  2. I'm falling behind on visiting...I can't seem to find enough hours in the day! Wanted to say what a nice post...pretty tree through the window, smiling 4-legged friends (hugs to Oliver) yummy looking food, and lights in the cheery!

    I spent today decorating, hope to wrap up tomorrow. I'm one of those who has to wait until after Thanksgiving, it just doesn't get it's fair share of celebrating!

    Hope all is can be busy, but we need to remember to settle in with a cup of tea and feet by the fire. Ahhh a little quiet time! Mary

  3. Kathy - thank you. Hoping you and your family have a wonderful week as well.

    Mary - I hear ya. I've fallen behind on reading blogs I love as well. Thank you for your kind words. And you're right about Thanksgiving - a very good point. Hugs to you!


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