Cave Dwellings: Am I Wishing My Life Away, Wishing For Autumn???
Cave Dwellings

Buckhorn Creek, Lake O' The Pines, Jefferson, TX

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Am I Wishing My Life Away, Wishing For Autumn???

This Saturday we were back in the pressure cooker….Will this humidity EVER go away??  I feel like I live in a tropical rain forest with paved streets.  Bring on the cool dry air that will usher in the beginning of Autumn. (The weather God must have heard my plea..Sunday was FABULOUS!!)   Fall has always been my favorite season though.  I really don’t mind donning jackets, sweatshirts and jeans, hats, and wearing real shoes instead of flip flops..

Me on our walk at Clear Springs, 12-11-09

I also love to watch Mother Nature begin her wonderful paintings of the trees….She starts with a light dusting of color on her brush, and soon dips it all the way, deep into the pots of red, orange, and yellow..even mixing them to come up with different hues….In my humble opinion, there is no camera on earth that could ever do it justice.  This miracle of nature you simply HAVE  to witness “up close and personal”..

  Saturday after our walk, I hauled in some more tomatoes and began blanching them for more chili and spaghetti sauce.  …Our son, Kelly, came over to change the brake pads on his truck.  McGuyver has an  impact-wrench hooked up to an air compressor in our garage, and Kelly knows just how much easier the job is with the correct tools…and Dad’s help.



…..When all else fails…read the instructions, right??? And of course, McGuyver has to get his nose right in the middle of it!!


The kitchen began smelling like an Italian restaurant in no time.  It took me about an hour to blanche the gazillion tomatoes…I added fresh chopped basil and parsley from my garden…..I think fresh herbs are the secret to great spaghetti sauce…By the time I had everything chopped, minced and stirred together it was noon…I hope I am getting  paid by the hour…FAT CHANCE! Thanks should be payment enough….but I would prefer the “other” green stuff. (Just kidding…I’ll probably give most of it to the kids.)100_7785

And now it was time to start the loooong , slooooow simmering process of about 4-5 hours…. Left is chili sauce, right is spaghetti sauce…


For those of you who occasionally watch The Food Network , you will understand .

We have a wrought iron duck on our deck that is very ornate, and when you put a tea light in it at night, it’s quite beautiful… HOWEVER… Wasps have taken the duck hostage , and are making it their home by making a nest in the neck of the poor thing  They were quite plentiful and becoming nasty little buggers,  more aggressive all the time…Our deck is a natural hangout for my grandkids when they are here. HMMMMM…   Keep in mind that wasps are different from bees…entirely.  I didn’t want these wasps telling their wasp buddies about the duck condo, and did some research online….

”A single wasp begins construction on a nest that may eventually house more than 500 adults.”  (DID THEY JUST SAY 500????)   “The queen lays four or five eggs in a small comb protected by several layers of papery material . She forages for wood fibers that, chewed and matted with saliva, will form new layers for her nest.”  (YUCK!) “The process is deliberate and precise: The queen measures the dimensions of her nest with her antennae.  Her eggs hatch into larvae, pupate, and emerge as workers.”  (WORKERS, I COULD USE)   “The wasps continue the nest's expansion, leaving the queen to egg laying. By the end of the summer, a large nest contains males, female workers, and a number of specially nurtured new queens, which leave the nest to begin their own nests come springtime.”…WHOA!!!  NOT HAPPENING AT THE CAVE DWELLINGS!!!  THERE IS ONLY ROOM FOR ONE QUEEN AROUND HERE..AND I HAPPEN TO BE HER!!


…I decided to try and save the duck by doing something.  The photo on the left looks like a bucket brigade, doesn’t it? …I got close enough to watch, and they seemed to be passing something from wasp to wasp until it reached the wasps living inside my poor duck..If you look closely at the right hand photo, you can see the little tea light peeking through….Time for me intervene..….I LIT THAT SUCKER UP, RISKING LIFE AND LIMB TO DO IT!….Wasps flew out from everywhere and I flew back through the back door ASAP. …BUT…… Damned if that tea light didn’t blow out!  This is becoming a real project… I refuse to do anymore with those bad boys today, but I see a job for McGuyver looming in the near future… Rest assured  I will maintain my watch-out from INSIDE the house!!

  Saturday evening is  “date night”, and while I was finding an outfit different than my daily baggy shorts and T-shirt, McGuyver was doing his own “make over” in the down stairs bathroom..(unbeknownst to me)…..




Den Head Shot100_7795



   I’m not sure who my new “date” is for the evening, but he looks C,S & D to me…(Cool, Suave and Debonair)…

Guess I will find out, eh??  (tee hee tee hee!)


  1. Say, have ya thought about bringing that wasp infested duck into the kitchen where the wind won't blow out the tea candle.....:)) I'm with ya all the way on the feeling of Autumn. Until one has stood in the golden hue of an early October hardwood forest on a soft sunny day one hasn't experienced Autumn from the inside. I had a nasty crash with my shaver the other day too but didn't come out of it looking as good as Dennis..........

  2. Gosh, I'm so ready for the colors and crispness of Autumn and I could feel it in your words. Simply beautiful!
    I could also smell those simmering sauces...What time is dinner?
    Those new inhabitants need to take a hike! Your duck is no place for them!
    Hope you enjoyed your date with that handsome feller! K

  3. Here's a tip from the half Dago kid from PA.when you fry your meat balls up in olive oil what ever is left over oil and anything else that is left in the skillet, including burned onions and meat bits get scraped and poured into the sauce pan, while the sauce is simmering when you add the meatballs for the last couple hours,(after they have cooled) you raid the frig and anything left over, porkchops, baked chicken or any other meat products is uncerimoniously dumped in the suace and simmered with the meatballs, if you have never had sauce with all these goodies you have never lived. Also the sauce should have little oil spots floating on top. I stole these tips from my Grandma who was born in Calabria Italy.Anyway you made me hungry just reading you blog and I see some baked Canoloni in my future this wee. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

  4. WOW!!!!! I just got some seriously Italian info from the source!!! Look our Giada..Donna Cavetti is now on board with the dope on how to cook Italian!!! Thank soooo much Sam!!!!!I owe you a Polish recipe..or German!!!

  5. I'm on the way with my own bowl and spoon..and beer leave the light on for me..

  6. Those simmering sauces sure look tasty! At least Dennis won't have to worry about getting his moustache all messed up with spaghetti sauce anymore!

  7. I watch food network, and I've never cared for Giada. I think her head is too big for her tiny body. :) I guess I don't like that because I have the opposite problem??? :)

  8. I hate wasps!! ugh!
    Good luck getting rid of them!

    I love autumn, it means it's almost time to head down south (when we get the motorhome anyway).

    Enjoy your date with that handsome fella of yours!