Strong Women and Whiskey

not for the delicate palate

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Location: Oxford, Pennsylvania, United States

I've found that if you speak as if with authority on nearly any topic, most people will believe you. This frightens me.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

inspired by Pumpkin Spice CoffeeMate

Dinner was a success.

For me, Thanksgiving, has never really been about the turkey. Or for most of my family. This year, we just fixed a turkey breast and lots of fixin's. I ran across Emeril's Cranberry Glazed Turkey Breast, and Cranberry Compote. The turkey turned out well, it was the first time I've brined the bird, the glaze was tasty too - though I scorched it a bit and ended up just serving it carved on a platter. Nice effect though, with the glaze drizzled over the white meat.

I WILL be making another batch of compote, it was amazing. Canned cranberry just won't do it for me, now.

Mom fixed yams and apples (slow cooked in enamel clad cast iron pot for ages... yum). I made Brussels sprouts with bleu cheese, green bean cassarole, baby peas (from can), stuffing (from scratch), spaghetti squash, collard greens, pumkin pie and pecan pie. Maybe some other stuff, I don't remember now.

We did have a potato fiasco. I got sidetracked -- okay I'll say it here, walking Daryl through mixing the green bean cassarole took way longer than just doing it myself (but he now knows how to make it!) so the potatoes, after having overcooked some, then sat and cooled off too much. The effect was similar to Elmers Paste ( in the jar, with the little stick-lid). So we had to throw them out. I couldn't serve them. Of course it was 3:30 p.m. and poor Daryl did run out to try to find any place that might have potatoes -- no dice. But....we didn't even miss them.

Nothing too fancy, but colorful and tasty. Doug and I went to Mom's the day of -- I started cooking and he started cleaning. I think Mom was thrilled-- she came in from work at the group home, with two of the clients and got to be all dressed up and the table was set nicely (we broke out the good dishes) and so -- a success. All the brothers in the area made it, including Devin -- Mom even got to schnooze a bit.

Now to work on Christmas, eh? While I'm not a marathon baker (nudge, grin) I do enjoy the baking part. I haven't made my Lebkuchen in a few years, I'm really hopeing to get it done this year, as well as some good shortbreads, Harlequin cookies, and I'm hoping to try my hand at springerle. AND I've stumbled onto some intriguing pie recipes. One is for a whipped pumpkin pie with a spice cookie crust, another is an apple pie with a cheddar cheese crust.

On top of THAT, I'm drooling over a ginger chocolate Bundt cake with Bourbon sauce and I'd really like to try to make a pudding -- either persimmon or plum (okay, I'll admit it, I'm just looking forward to the flambe part) And the living room painting project should be done this week, which means we can decorate. We have a perfect place for the tree. Here's what we have of the paint job so far, before, primer, and after.

the tinted primer was rather pretty, only it made me think we needed cabbage roses and plastic on the couch. I've seen this color done well, it's just not my style. :)

this, however,is more my style. doug really likes it too, he was a bit concerned over the color choice at first, but it makes the room a bit cozier, without making it feel small and dark. It's a rather large and tall room so a bold color really does help make it less intimidating. The floor is in rough shap, after the painting's done, it's next on the list, only I'm looking for someone to handle the sanding as well as assessing and replacing some of the wood. It's just too far above my skill level -- namely because our old floors are pretty uneven and that would require use of a drum sander, which is quite a beast.

plucking my eyebrows in the reflection of day-old coffee

today: coffee cold and heavy on the creamer

rain beats hard on the roof over the bathroom, except when the wind gusts so fiercely that the drops are


away before landing somewhere other than where they planned

a late night, an early morning, day spent more contemplating the nap than aquiring it due to

phone calls about a brother i hate addiction

i sit on the closed toilet to better hear the rain and reread the New Yorker while the cat makes love to my ankles

and if the phone rings, I won't answer

it's rude to answer when you're in the bathroom

Thursday, November 24, 2005

looking up

Things are improving. I was up until almost 2 a.m. cooking, and getting ready to start back up again. Yay. We had our first snow last night (highly unusual, this early for this area) - it made me all giggly - I also thought I'd share a happy thought of mine or a few of them -- the ones that have pictures, anyway. Happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrate!

I know, you all are dreaming about turkey, but me? This is my food happy place. Endless sushi..... *sigh* They don't have these around here. In the five days we were in Hawaii I badgered Lexi to take us twice.

mmm. eel.

...and Spam sushi. Only in Hawaii. They had hotdog sushi for the kids, but this was waaaay funnier. (I know "sushi" is a very general term)

Our Coffemate inspired wall color choices. We're going for the middle one, and using the bottom for an accent color. See, I found this coffee creamer called "pumkin spice".....

Some folks worry about letting the cat out of the bag. We've left this thing lying on our living room floor for a few weeks because Gigi enjoys it so much.

My brother's kitten, Punkin, in a stock pot. He was enjoying himself, I think.


Barnhenge in the snow. What's really cool is the disco effect that happens when you take a picture of the snow. It's all melted now, but fun while it lasted.

Monday, November 21, 2005


Can you feel the way the word fills your mouth, how the cadence of it forces the jaw to flap like a fish gasping outside the bowl? Feel the way the "ohhh" rings hollow as a dead winter wind in the eaves and the "lee" keens in mourning?


It seems I will forever be the 10 year old hoping to be liked by allowing the other kids to copy her homework. I'm tired. This started when I thought of planning a party the weekend before Christmas, a gift-wrapping party. I thought it would be fun. Then I didn't know who to invite. Then I didn't know who would actually come. It would be nice. I throw a great party... Doug being around only makes it better.

Perhaps it is that I don't feel I have much to offer. I hear my mother's voice coming out of my mouth... "Why don't you stop by I have good coffee/chicken and dumplings/pie/expensive treats/exotic entrees?"

.... granted, I love to share, I love to feed people. But I'm starving for friendship. It seems that folks keep slipping away and I can't even reel them in with a good free dinner. It also seems that I am perpetually closer to my friends than they are to me. Or they've moved away-- I have so many people all over this country that I can't even have a cuppa coffee with.

Some of the people I'd like to see the most, I've never or rarely ever seen -- or they live a long way away and that's how it goes. I miss girlfriends. I miss talking. I miss listening. I miss just stopping by. I miss having someone to shop with, or to notice my new shoes. I miss being silly, I miss being comfortable enough not to judge myself against others. My two closest local friends are both very busy with their own stuff and in one case, I think, doesn't feel nearly as close to me as I do her. She's got other, way cooler friends, and really, what right do I have to determine closeness? It's funny, because I knew her way back, years ago, and remember her very vividly, but she doesn't recall as much. Some part of me even feels like she understands this and feels obligated to keep it up -- like the young kid I was nice to in high school because he had a massive crush on me, I kept him at arms length, never gave him any hope at all, but I wasn't mean to him, even when he was being really annoying, since I knew that a sharp word from me would wound him worse than from someone else.

The bottom line, I just feel so damned pathethic.

The suggestion was made that I find a job and make some new friends through there, maybe that's what I'm missing. Funny, I worked my last job for 8 years with many of the same people and I don't really hear from them. But I was lonely there too -- hell, instead getting to have a crying jag in the comfort of my car, I had to sniffle in the ladies room.

I'm missing some part of the cement and I just can't find it -- I'm so tired of trying, so tired of feeling desperate. Tired of feeling so hollow. Along the way, I lost my thick skin, or maybe I never really had it -- but I'm so sensitive to loss, all this loss around me, this death, this anger, all this loneliness that's not all mine. I just keep soaking it up. I feel people slipping away from me with each day, I'm scared sometimes, to let out how I really feel because I don't want them to leave faster, don't want to ruin whats left. I don't want to hurt anyone. I was just sitting here trying to feel properly angry and I couldn't! I was able to justify everything.

Somehow I've developed this habit -- this clarity, empathy, change of perspective, what have you... it goes something like this: i'm mad at mom, every time i've tried to talk to her about my problems she doesn't listen and the topic changes to being about her but that's what you expect when she doesn't really have anyone to share these things with, it's not selfishness, it's just what's at the surface when the communication opens and it just needs to be gotten though-- the only problem is that it takes an hour and by that time I'm too distracted with her problems to talk about my own and besides her problems are way bigger than mine, which will pass, but if my brothers only talked to her some like a person instead of a figurehead and understood that she's a person, then she would have a lot more "person" to go around and in addition to that how can I expect more of her than I would a friend? if this were my friend, I wouldn't really be mad, I'd just go on to another friend. At least my brother's have that. Except they don't come around much anymore, hell, I hooked David up with a cell phone and paid the bill on it, and now Doug and I both do and I don't even hear from him ever (except for when he called me by accident) but he just lost his job, and he's young and I'm sure he's stressed out, but Daryl, Daryl offered to come over and help with house stuff and even said he would make a wedding gift out of doing some insulation work -- here it is Thanksgiving and still no insulation -- but he did come over and help me move the wood stove a few weeks ago and that was no mean feat so I can't be angry at him, and Devin, Devin went to Daryl with his alcohol problem, which I understand because they're close, but I didn't here anything from Devin until he needed money to pay for his rehab at a private center, so of course I dropped everything to handle that, and communicated with everyone for him and ya know he's been out of contact with me since then even though he's talked to Darly since, and is living in a halfway house, and is getting help, and he didn't even bother to tell Mom or I that he wouldn't be coming home for Thanksgiving dinner b/c he'd be eating with a church group -- but I can't be angry with him because it's Rehab for chrissakes, I'm just glad he got in there.

And so I'm still angry. Still upset, and everyone else is somehow exponged.


I've speant a total of 3 hours and 15 minutes on the phone with Mom the past two days, hashing and rehashing the particulars of Thanksgiving. I'm not talking about the menu, I'm talking about whether or not it was gonna goddamn happen. It seems like every year this waffling happens, and no one but I get the brunt of it. It's incredibly draining. I'm the one on the phone or in person soothing, discussing, planning, listening to her vent. I'll be the one helping to cook and clean up. So will Doug, who has by the way, washed more dishes at Mom's house in the past six months than any one of my brothers has in the past year.

There's a lot of circular thought from this --whether because Mom never layed down ground rules early on, or because her manner of getting things done can be a bit particular, or because the boys are boys, or because they've given up trying or....well whatever. The bottom line is that every year, consistantly, I feel like I have to play in some way, the role of Holiday Rescue.

If I have to save it at least let me be the one to host it. Christmas last year worked out pretty well at the apartment because there was no precedent. Everyone showed up, dressed nicely, mostly behaved AND I put the little suckers to work when I needed help and whacked a few fingers for picking at the food before it was ready.

They're not bad boys, I love them. I just resent that I am the one that's stuck sucking up all the negativity beforehand so they can have a nice happy time during. Mom is so afraid of driving away any of her sons... I guess she figured I'm staying around. It's like this if I don't save a Sunday dinner, then oh well, there will be others. If I don't save a Holiday it will (and this has been proven) detract something from all future ones.

************* but, it'll be a good holiday, I'll be able to brush this crap away long enough to enjoy it. Maybe this rant isn't exactly absolutely unerringly true, but it's true to me, and it's how I feel.*************

Friday, November 18, 2005


My new obsession:

Growing loofah. I've spent the whole morning reading up on it after coming across it a month or so ago in Llywellyn's Herbal Almanac. I've decided I want to plant two varieties for starters, and I'll use the chicken coop to grown them against -- atleast two sides of the coop. The girls should get SOME sun. Apparently they are fast growers of the pumpkin family, much like a squash, and similar to zucchini in shape. I'm a big fan of vining plants because they are so fullfilling to watch grow and these apparently, will take over what ever you plant them against. They can be eaten when young, or left to dry on the vine to make loofah sponges, soaps, etc. You can read a bit more about them here or here.

Doug and I are starting to hash out the details for next year's growing season. I don't think we'll have the ability to handle more than some basic veggies, but then again, we might. I can also try to sell the excess by putting out an honor-system vegetable stand along the road. Those do remarkably well around here. But the problem will be getting the beds in. I'd like to do several 8'x8' semi-raised beds. That way everything is accessible, and I can keep track of crop rotation. This also helps to group plants by ripeness dates. That way, you end up with an empty bed in late summer/early fall to plan winter crops, and for example, it's best to give the asparagus their own bed since I won't be seeing anything tasty from them for a couple years.

Besides the veggie garden, we also have a butterfly garden in the works and a need to start some serious ground cover/ erosion prevention along the edge of the property by the road. We've torn out a bunch of mulitflora and double briar and would like to replace it with a fast growing, good smelling vine--- maybe a variety of clematis and some honeysuckle. But it's gotta go in right away in the spring.

And we can't forget the herb garden. It's very important to me to have all the herbs I've been missing available.... like fresh basil, tarragon, and cilantro. Or the medicinal ones -- chamomile, bee balm, mint, etc. Some of them I can combine in other plots, but I'd like to set aside and herb area -- hopefully be able to park it near and area to grow flowers for cutting. I've found all kinds of seeds at which seems to be a great website. We also have the perfect place for sunflowers.... and don't forget the lilacs or fruit trees we need to put in, and eventually some berries.

Sheesh. D and I are talking about establishing grow lights in our basement in order to start seedlings early. Ideally I'd like to have a shed or greenhouse setup for that and a cold frame for hardening them off. Grow lights use a lot of electricity, too, so I'm wonder on the economic value of them,especially if we used them in the basement until we can get a greenhouse set up in a few years. I mean, right now, we don't really even want to pay the $700 or so it will cost to get a half decent shed to put the lawnmower in!

So -- I'm sure it's all about pacing. I'll be starting classes in March. Fortunately they're evening classes, so in theory, I can get a grip on the spring planting and such. Oh, and before we do any of the big stuff, we need to have the property surveyed and fenced in order to keep the deer as out as we can AND clear a bunch of the area to make it useable. And don't forget the idea to start a goat dairy here, too! I think those'll wait a few years. Or, even better, we can start out with one or two goats, see how that goes and expand as we move along. That way the care and maintenance are learned along the way, and become more "routine".

So I guess it's time to sit down and start prioritizing. Speaking of routine and priorities... it's time to go paint the walls with some color samples, refinish a table, clean the living room, feed the chickens, make some business calls, sweep, wash dishes, transplant some books, do laundry, and make dye.


Thursday, November 17, 2005

not warm, not warm atall...and some pics

Today is the first day I've really felt that bite of winter in the air. It was a little unnerving. Fortunately I had my winter coat ready when I went out to feed the chickens. But now that some of the brush is dying back, I was able to wander around our property a bit... it's huge! In the summer so much of it was not accessible I don't think I got a great idea of exactly how much there is. Plus, it's very hilly out here, so some things my seem close, but really that's because you're looking from one hill to another.... the actual travel time is a different story altogether.
Currently I'm eyeballing the brush and wondering how to clear a good part (not all ) of it out. I know there is a way, or a tool that'll work, or something that doesn't involve me and a machete and a pair of loppers clearing 10 feet a day. I'm sure of it. If only I knew someone who's husband was in landscaping that might be able to tell me what that is....
The new windows look great, and the draft has reduced a bunch. Some of them feel like they're leaking air, but it probably has more to do with the trim/siding work that needs to be done yet. The kitchen guys stopped over today with a plumber and it looks like it will be do-able. The plumbing was going to be tricky so it's good to hear a solid "I can do that" from the plumber.
Last week was absolutely crazy, the guys to install the new heat pump system were here, and a whole crew of guys doing the windows. We've also had a door moved and a window put in down in what is going to be the kitchen. It's pretty cool, and the placement of the door, although I was not thrilled with the idea at first, really does make the whole room feel a lot more "useable"... this kitchen is going to be huge! I'm so excited for it. I especially like that Doug and I are going to be able to do some of the work ourselves which 1. cuts some expense and 2. makes it more "ours".
Hopefully we aren't going to go so broke in the process that we won't be able to use it, though I'm sure I'll be able to boil water for Ramen with ease. *grin* The sad thing is, I love Ramen noodles. Even though I've lived off of them for stretches of time in my life, I still find them tasty... how scary is that? I do not, however, care for pancakes in most cases. We must've had one too many dinners of them when I was a kid.
Okay, enough rambling, here are some pictures.
This is the Collette-chicken. I managed to get this shot when she wasn't hiding. It's not great, but you can see how she's all poufy, right down to her feet.

Here is our very pretty rooster. Doug called him The Major in reference to the fact that he takes the girls out for walks..... so of course, I figured that a better name would be "The Colonel" -- because it was too damn morbid not to!

At first, Morgan wasn't sure what to do with the big stuffed spider on Halloween. Then he figured that eating it was the best course of action. I'm sure he traumatized every spider in the house with that one. I'm sure they'd rather brave the cold!

Nappus Interuptus. The kitties work hard to protect us and what do I do? I drop in and destroy a perfectly good nap with that flashy thing.

Garlic soup. Yum. Made similar to French onion, but less cheese. Instead I've toasted half a croissant with some Gruyere and ladled the soup over it. Again, yum.

I think the dining room stayed this clean for all of 1 week until we had to dump a bunch of stuff on the table which is mostly still there. *sigh*

Some people have a green thumb. Mine turned brown. Actually my gloves split open at the thumbnail when I as husking some black walnuts. Hopefully the dye I'm making from them will stain some wood as well as it did me!

Propagating irises. I'm sure there's a law against it in some conservative states....

Doug digging the mum bed. It's got all the flowers from our wedding in it.

A wall made of stones from the barn complete the look and transform a hard to mow or trim hill into something pretty.

Doug's best used car salesman face. How could I resist?

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Easy as Pie

..... well tasty, anyway. Just wanted to share to fruit of Erica's and my efforts today. After a quick trip to the grocery store to see what looked good. We settled on making a pumpkin pie, a rustic apple and cherry tart, and some cookies.
I am not a fan of pumpkin pie. Or wasn't. I don't care for pale orange, wussy pumpkin pie. I like a little kick in my pie. We found this recipe and it's sooooo yummy. Dark molasses and heavy cream and orange marmalade really give this some kick. The recipe called for a tiny amount of spices, so of course, I had to go well over that!

We couldn't find any cookie cutters as the grocery (and I don't own any, sadly) so I took the bottom of my maple leaf muffin pan and pressed it into the pastry, then cut our around the leaves. They turned out beautifully, then I put a pinch of maple sugar on each one so it would melt over the surface. It kind of obscured the design on the leave, but it is tasty!

Tart-y goodness. Country-Style Brandied Apple and Dried Cherry tarts. Well actually the recipe calls for you to brandy the cherries. Dried out a bit, I tend to like my apples saucy in a pie, but very tasty. We put an egg wash on the outside to strenghten it a bit, and baked them on parchement paper on a pizza stone. We also addes some chopped pecans and currants to the mix. I can't leave anything alone, I know.

Looks like miles of the stuff, eh?

"... the sweetest cherry in the apple pie..." We had so much filling left over that we brandied some more cherries and Erica showed off how handy she can be with pastry. She hand cut each of those little apples and leaves.

It when it came out, between the egg wash and the coarse sugar, it was just so pretty! I think this time we didn't let the cherries plump up in the brandy as long as they should have. So the dried cherries are exceptionally chewy, and the apple dried out a bit on top of the pie, a bit of butter did help that.

Peanut Butter cookies. I may mess with and/or butcher many recipes that come may way in order to suit my preferences. I do NOT mess with the Fanny Farmer peanut butter cookie recipe. And the best peaunut butter for cookies? The government issue stuff, of course! Erica's daughter, Eve, who is 4, was a huge help in making these. She leveled and added all the flour while I was mixing... of course, getting the flour out of all the other places it got added to is another trick altoghter..... but I think she had a good time.

Wedding, Wedding

I keep getting emails from David's Bridal and from The Knot, still counting down to the supposed wedding date. How funny is that? I actually got a telemarket call for some wedding related thing and the guy introduced himself and asked how I was and I said, "Married, thank you." That really threw him off his script. Heh.

You can read stuff about the wedding at my brother blog here. Or Raven's blog here. But I suppose the bride has to tell her story herself, too, eh?

There is something exhilerating about playing in the rain. We (the girls) woke up at my house in the pooring rain. Of course, I would have loved to stay in bed BUT apparently I was neccessary for the ceremony and stuff. So I start getting dressed and fooling with my hair and make-up a bit. With the rain, I decided against anything elaborate or curled and found my best waterproof mascara. Raven however helped and took an amazing creative twist with it. Our photographer showed up with his wife (Erica who was a bridesmaid) took some pictures and they headed down to the site so they could pick up the flowers and apple cider donuts from Milburn Orchards (baked that day) on the way down.

Not only do I and Raven get to the site on time, but so does my Mom (early in fact yay Mom!). Mrs. Taylor allowes to get ready in her gorgeous house, she has a room that looks like a glassed in porch that we used.... of course this gave me a great view of-- torrential rain and frantic people scrambling. I have to admit, though, that the idea of sending my brother David to Wal-Mart the night before for clear ponchos for the boys was a good idea -- and they were all so courteous and handsome. DJ the eldest brother, came down from Wisconsin and aside from bringing lots of tasty cheese, he also helped organize the boys. They all did wonderfully, directing traffic, people, and doing all the last minute setup.

But apparently the tent did not shelter the land as well as we hoped. Of course, it really couldn't. It could handled rain but not monsoon, I think. So as I'm getting dressed Erica comes in and says there's a lot of mud under the tent... a LOT of mud. She doesn't want me to be too surprised. I look down at my handmade white leather moccasins from Medieval Moccasins and decide that maybe another footwear option is neccessary. Not a problem. I have pink and blue striped galoshes!

But we all get dressed successfully. I didn't have a guest book, I forgot to make one. So I asked Mrs. Taylor if she had a few sheets of stationary or something like that she could staple together for me. Her daughter, Bethany, and she actually took good paper, and ribbon, and made a guest book. That was so incredibly touching! The bouquets are amazing, the caterer is completely set up by the time the ceremony is ready to start we're all piled onto the back porch as things get rolling.... I can hear the music start to seat the mothers. Between my brothers and our ministers husband JB, who was soaked by now, just about everyone made it to the tent with an umbrella'd escort.

Erica and Raven looked absolutely gorgeous. I mean really pretty! The flower girl Brynn, and ring bearer, Trevor were adorable. I hadn't seen Doug or the guys yet. I was to walk down the isle with two brothers in front of me and two behind, with DJ giving me away and the others standing behind him. Even with the space constraints, I would not budge on my brothers giving me away, it was too important.

Just at the entrance of the tent, I find I can't walk. Oh, that's because David is standing on the hem of my dress and hay! there's hay everywhere. I made it halfway down the "aisle" very slowly since it's so short... and finally am able to see past all the people on my right and when I saw Doug, my legs just went..... all wobbly. And his eyes got all watery and red.... it was probably the hay *grin*.

But the ceremony went well from there. My friend Mike was stunning in a black satin shirt with a ruffle down the front -- he did the poetry reading (very well, the man has an amazing voice), my uncle read from the bible, the tent filtered what little light and rain there was and it was very.... authentic, I think in some ways, due to the arrangements. However the big attraction was that the first leaves of autumn had been scattered across the top of the tent by the wind and rain, and you could see them outlined against the ceiling. It was really pretty. AND there had been concern that we didn't have enough mums for the original plan, and the smaller space actually made the tent seem very full and bright.

No mishaps during the vows, which we had customized some. The ceremony seemed a bit long but I have to admit, when I looked out over the people gathered there, I knew every face, and to Doug and I, it really felt like they were sharing this with us, not spectators. Everyone really pulled together, even guests, to make this happen. Thinking about it now, I can really appreciate that -- people made it that I didn't think would make it, and some didn't that I thought would. But I think everyone had a good time.

I figure that the thing that bothered me the most was that everything went well except for the one thing I couldn't control at all and that put a real "damper" on things. But that day -- was wonderful. I love to play in the rain, and fortunately... it wasn't cold. It was just rainy. So how many people can say they got married in galoshes?

But the food was amazing and there was too much of it. Everyone got to eat their fill (this is good, I've been to too many weddings where there wasn't enough!) and it was really tasty. Blue Marlin Catering did a wonderful job and coordinated with the tent people A&M Tent Events really well. The apple cider donuts were made fresh that morning. There had been some thought of having a wedding cake but, I'm glad we didn't. Can you imagine what a mess that would have been in all that rain?

The hay.... apparently at the last minute, the idea of hay came up,since the tarps just weren't working AND were slippery. So my other brother, Daryl *grin* and the best made take a drive to a nearby farm (the mother of the girl Daryl is dating) and pick up several bales of hay to spread out under the tent... and it worked! I think, ultimately it protected Mrs. Taylor's yard, too.

This is just too funny to me for some reason. Doug was amazingly handsome. Granted none of the guys wore "traditional" formalwear, but they all pulled of their 'looks' well. I'm thinking Doug needs more doublets! Jon even bought a sword for the occasion. My brothers all wore their floofy shirts without too much complaining and looked incredibly good in them.

So pictures were taken, music was played, mead was drunk, food eaten... merriment and rain, hey it was definately relaxed, maybe a bit too much since a lot of wedding "tradition" got thrown by the wayside, but hey, I don't miss most of it. Especially not the damned garter thing which we both don't care for.

When it came time to leave, the RenFair was obviously not going to happen. We were all cold and wet and didn't want to get colder, wetter, and muddier. So the limo that Doug and I hired for 9 hours ($$$) only got used to take D and I are a long drive up Rt. 1 and back down to Barnhenge. Of course, we killed both bottles of champagne and the driver was really funny. I had some trouble getting into the limo, I asked the driver... "how do women in hoop skirts get into these things" .. he just said "very carefully".

So since there just so happened to be two brothers handy... I put them to work.... again. In the mud, in the rain, standing behind the limo, I hiked up my skirts and untied my hoop then had the boys pull it down so I could step over it (in my pink galoshes) and put it in the trunk of the limo. How funny is that? They were cracking up. I was wearing bicycle shorts underneath (how sexy is that? ), so nothing risque, no flowers in this attic, here.

So we went on our drive in the limo and just relaxed for a bit with a sigh of relief. We came home and managed to change out of our gear before friends started showing up -- of course we weren't going to let the party end at the reception! Mom even sent the boys up with leftovers and food ( we didn't have any since we were going away for a week ) -- we had beer and mead and a little hard stuff. I have to say I got quite drunk -- but had a good time, and I think everyone getting to hang out with everyone else in such an informal setting was good.

So many people pulled together to make this happen from the time we moved up the date and before that and during the wedding and reception itself I was really touched by all the love there, and as Devin said, this was definately a "Harris Wedding". I suppose my last day as a Harris had to embody that......and ya know, Doug and I are doing happily ever after quite well, I think.

We're still waiting on the proffessional photos, and I have to check and see if I can get any of them in digital form, to share. But in the post below this are some that friends and family have shared with us so far.


It's important to have good hair...see, dry and everything!

Just about everyone who took pictures had a shot like this, it was just so ephemeral and pretty, the photos really don't do it justice.

The lads... left to right, DJ, Daryl, Devin, and David.

I will treasure this picture forever because, well, because they're all in one place and quiet. Amazing.

A moment of prayer for the men, led by Michelle Loving-Moore, our minister. Left to right, Doug, Jon, and Dude (I mean Stu).

If only we had a tarp and a lackey to put it out....

....ah, okay! This was the first layer of defense against the mud!

Trevor after performing his duties...

...and Brynn who hung out up front a while longer. Aren't they cute? The flower basket was too big and both were having troubles with the hay but they did an amazing job.

The girls... Raven (left), Erica (right) and Brynn (front).... also two of the boys.. I love the big smile on Doug's face.

The words...

The rings...

I just did what?!?! (Doug after the drugs wore off)

Yep, still smilin'

My cute husband waiting for me in the limo so that we may be whisked away to our estate in the country. :)

With These Rings

by Janet Paisley

You are fresh words

on the old stone of time

Here, silence honours you,

here now, the earth turns,

the sun beats, the rain sings.

You are not adrift

among the wheeling constellations

but held by the hoop of love.

Ancient as the ring of standing stones,

prophetic as a snow-ring round the moon,

marriage is.

Wear your vows well when laughter

is the wine between you

or when night lies like a bolster

down the middle of your bed.

May the cold shoulder of the hill

always afford you shelter.

May the sun always seek you

however dark the place.

We who are wordless know

thorns have roses.

And when you go from this day

the burnished stars go with you.

When you go forward from this day

the love that grew you

grows with you

and marriage is struck,

iron on stone, hand in hand.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

tongue planted firmly in cheek....

Borrowed from qu0thraven

Some thoughts on gay marriage....

1. Homosexuality is not natural, much like eyeglasses, polyester, and birth control.

2. Heterosexual marriages are valid because they produce children. Infertile couples and old people can't legally get married because the world needs more children.

3. Obviously, gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.

4. Straight marriage will be less meaningful if Gay marriage is allowed, since Britney Spears' 55-hour just-for-fun marriage was meaningful.

5. Heterosexual marriage has been around a long time and hasn't changed at all; women are property, blacks can't marry whites, and divorce is illegal.

6. Gay marriage should be decided by people, not the courts, because the majority-elected legislatures, not courts, have historically protected the rights of the minorities.

7. Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country That's why we have only one religion in America.

8. Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.

9. Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.

10. Children can never succeed without a male and a female role model at home. That's why single parents are forbidden to raise children.

11. Gay marriage will change the foundation of society. Heterosexual marriage has been around for a long time, and we could never adapt to new social norms because we haven't adapted to things like cars or longer lifespans.

12. Civil unions, providing most of the same benefits as marriage with a different name are better, because a "separate but equal" institution is always constitutional. Separate schools for African-Americans worked just as well as separate marriages for gays and lesbians will.