Saturday, February 28, 2015

The Very Worst Thing

Today is an anniversary, but not a happy one. I grew up hearing about this day, all school children in my area knows this story. A dear family friend survived this day, but rarely does he speak of it. February 28, 1958 a Floyd County Kentucky school bus slid off the road after clipping the rear of a

tow truck that had pulled into its path. It would end up being the worse school bus disaster in US history. A record we all hope is never broken. Of the 49 passengers on Bus 27 that day only 22 would make it off the bus alive. Floyd county didn't have a rescue squad at the time, divers from the US Navy searched the swollen current of the Big Sandy River. It took 3 days to find the bus and haul it out of the muddy river. It took even longer, 40 days, before the body of the last child, 13 year old Katie Jarrell of Sugar Loaf would be recovered. She was found 7 miles downstream.

Three Families lost all of their children that cold February morning. The family friend was at the back of the bus, he was one of the first off, and helped pull others to safety. In a matter of a few short minutes the bus went under. Survivors recall seeing the hands and arms of their friends and classmates sticking from the bus windows as it went under. The swift current of the flooded river swept the bus 250 yards from the point it entered the water. This was the very worst thing.

As a result of this tragedy Floyd countians formed together to build a rescue squad, they train swift water rescuers. While we all hope a disaster like this never happens again, Floyd county has prepared themselves.

Many schools in this area have missed 2 weeks as a result of the snow and ice storm. Schools have started using online resources so students don’t fall behind while out for weather. We don’t take chances with the safety of students.

Doris Faye Burchett, 15, of Emma
James Edison Carey, 9, of Emma
Glenda May Cisco, 17, of Sugar Loaf,
Kenneth Forest Cisco, 14, of Sugar Loaf
Sandra Faye Cline, 8, of Lancer
Paulette Cline, 9, of Lancer
Imogene Darby, 17, of Cow Creek
Linda Darby, 14 of Cow Creek
John Alex DeRossett, 17, of Water Gap
James Edward Goble, 12, of Emma
John Spencer Goble, 11, of Emma
Anna Laura Goble, 9, of Emma
Jane Carol Harris, 14, of Emma
John Harlan Hughes Jr., 13, of Emma
Margaret Louise Hunt, 15, of Cow Creek
Bucky Ray Jarrell, 14, of Sugar Loaf
Katie Carol Jarrell, 13, of Sugar Loaf
Marcella Jervis, 14, of Emma
Montaine Jervis, 15, of Endicott
Thomas Roosevelt Jervis, 13, of Buffalo Creek
Katherine Justice, 15, of Endicott
Nannie Joyce McPeek, 17, of Lancer
Joyce Ann Matney, 14, of Lancer
Rita Cheryl Matney, 8, of Lancer
James L. Meade Jr., 9, of Lancer
James Thomas Ousley, 15, of Lancer

Randy Scott Wallen, 17, of Lancer

Friday, February 27, 2015

The Passing of TIme

The days seem to crawl by much slower when you count them in minutes. 

Things are not Wonderful here at the Wandering in the Wonderful farm. But things will get better, each passing day brings us closer to the end of this rough patch and closer to fulfilling the life goals we set in motion some months back. 

Things are slowly thawing out, my sweet little chickens ventured out from their coop yesterday. This was their first time in the run in over a week due to snow and ice. My poor car is trapped in the icy driveway and may thaw out until mid spring. I am not going to complain, this means I get to steal the Wanderers car. His is AWD, unlike mine. 

Currently working on a more concrete blogging schedule, I would like to post new content at least 3 days a week. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Blogs, Youtubers, and Podcasts we LOVE.

Blogs, Youtubers, and Podcasts we LOVE.

We are both in the process of learning Portuguese. I turned to Youtube for helpful videos to aid in proper pronunciation and grammar. What I found was these to fresh, enthusiastic souls. They teach the important lessons like how to say Dude in Portuguese. They turn the cameras on for their adventures on a budget around the world.  

Some of you may have heard about this podcast over Thanksgiving Weekend 2014 when Colt and his good friend CM Punk “broke the internet”. We have been listening to this wrestling podcast for a while now. Colt interviews a good mix of old school and new school wrestlers. The Wanderer and I both have fond childhood memories involving Professional Wrestling.

We have been following this podcast for a few months now. His podcasts break down homesteading tasks, giving you the pros and cons of different ways to do things. His friend and accountant chimes in toward the end of the podcast to give you a financial breakdown of the task.

The Wanderer has lost close to 100 pounds following the Ketogenic diet. We get so many recipes. We get so many ideas, and helpful tricks from the Caveman Keto website and Youtube channel.

Sew mama sew offers tips, tricks, patterns and ideas for sewing projects of all kinds. Sewing is a skill I plan on working at and becoming more proficient with. The resources at Sew Mama Sew has proven to be invaluable. 

When I need to get my creative juices flowing I head over to A Beautiful Mess. Simple as that. Want to learn how to make homemade pasta? A Beautiful Mess has you covered. Looking for tips and inspiration for redecorating you bedroom? A Beautiful Mess is your source book. Want tips on weekend adventures? Turn to A Beautiful Mess. 

At this point, everyone has heard of Pinterest, the worlds cork-board. Like most people I turn to Pinterest for inspiration and ideas from everything from tending the chickens to Sunday dinner. 

At the beginning of the year I downloaded this ap on my phone. I make it a point every morning to read a bit on one of the many plans I have downloaded on the ap. After each section you can swipe left and chat with others about what you just read. 

Monday, February 23, 2015

12 things you want to know...

1) What is your current health related goal? Goal for both of us is losing weight.

2) What is your biggest irrational fear? For me, bridges, terrified of bridges. Mr. Wanderer has an irrational fear of a mouse popping out from the storage drawer under the stove.

3) Do you enjoy wrapping presents?
Nope. I am horrible at wrapping presents, so is Mr. Wanderer. My sister is amazing at wrapping, her presents are color/pattern coordinated, usually with unique handmade tags.

4) What’s your favorite Etsy shop?
Totally loving the sweet styles of LaPlumeNoir and PeacockVintageJewels
5) If I came to visit you, what would we do?
Explore some of Kentucky's amazing hiking trails, take the pooches to the trail at my favorite lake. Or hit the bourbon trail to sample some of the worlds best bourbon.

6) 2 weeks off and plane tickets anywhere … Where to?

7) Do you have a pet or pets? If so, what kind and what are their names?
We have two Shih Tzus, Miss Scarlet and Inigo Montoya.

8) What were you in highschool: prom queen, nerd, cheerleader, jock, valedictorian, band geek, loner, artist, prep?
We were both definitely nerds.

9) You MUST eat a fast food meal … Which restaurant do you choose and what is your order?
We don’t have much to choose from in our small town. We love hitting Subway for either a chopped salad or a club sandwich.

10) Have you ever met a celebrity?
Yes, many times, a lot of famous actors and musicians come from Kentucky. A few years ago William Shatner opened the door for my nieces and I while we are heading into Jo-Beth Booksellers in Lexington, Ky. He has a house in Versailles, Ky.

11) If you could choose a “do-over” career, what would it be?
We are both working on developing our “do-over” careers right now, we will keep you posted.

12) What skill do you lack?
I have very basic sewing skills, but I would love to learn to sew my own clothing. We have chickens, this year we plan on learned to butcher chickens.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Kentucky Roots

Kentucky produces a lot of talent. Loretta Lynn has always been very vocal about growing up in Kentucky. Muhammad Ali unveiled a a museum and cultural center in his hometown of Louisville in 2005. Ashley Judd has dipped her toe in Kentucky politics and has been a vocal supporter of University of Kentucky sports.

Hunter S. Thompson
A groundbreaking journalist and author, Thompson is know as the founder of “gonzo” journalism. He was born in Louisville, Ky 1937. Thompson lived life by his own rules. Upon his death in 2005 his good friend, and fellow Kentuckian Johnny Depp went through with Thompsons' final wish. 300 people watched as Thompson's ashes were fired from a cannon.

Jim Varney
Somewhere along the way I had forgotten the Varney was a fellow Kentuckian. One day while wandering around the Lexington Cemetery I stumbled upon his grave. He lent his voice to the Toy Story franchise of movies, acting in numerous TV and movies, he was best known as his character Ernest P Worrell.

Grandpa Jones
Born Louis Marshall Jones he called Niagara, KY home until his teen years when he uprooted to Akron, Oh. It was in Akron that Jones began his career in gospel and country music singing on air at WJW. Jones was a charter cast member of Hee Haw. Jones gave key testimony that lead to the conviction of  John A. Brown and Marvin Douglas Brown. On November 10, 1973 the Browns murdered Jones’ neighbor, and fellow Kentuckian and Hee Haw cast member David "Stringbean" Akeman.

Mildred &Patty Hill
You may not recognize the name at first, but I am certain at some point in time you have sang their song. These Louisville sisters wrote Happy Birthday to You.

Silas House
To day this Lily, Ky native has wrote 5 novels and 5 plays. House is also a contributing editor to No Depression magazine. House has joined other native Kentucky authors  Wendell Berry, Bobbie Ann Mason and Maurice Manning in a controversial stance against Mountaintop removal mining.

Helen Thomas
Born in Winchester, Ky in 1920. Thomas was a trailblazer in the world of journalism. She covered administrations from Eisenhower to Obama. Starting as a correspondent she climbed the ranks to become the first female president of White House Correspondents' Association. Thomas was know for asking tough, controversial questions. She has been quoted as saying “I don't think a tough question is disrespectful.”

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Roadtripping Tips and Tricks

My sister recently sprung the idea of a road trip on me. I road trip often, and I have taken her two daughters with me several times. The girlies are veteran road-trippers. My sister? Not so much. The last road trip I remember my sister taking was a whirlwind trip we took to Nashville to see Hayseed Dixie play at the Exit/In. (If you haven't heard of Hayseed then get yourself to Youtube now!). She fell asleep on the table at Waffle House.

My tips for road-trip success.

Tip 1. Don't put all your money in one spot. Do not rely just on your banks debit card. Many people do this, and if their card is lost or stolen they find themselves broke. I was in a situation several years ago were the bank frozen my account while I was a thousand miles from home. Thankfully I had cash, so the trip continued as planned while the bank worked through their issues. Split your cards and cash up, keep them in separate pockets, keep some locked up in the car. If someone steals your purse, or pick pockets you, you will still have money. 

Tip 2. Bring a physical map. We rely way to much on our GPS's and google maps. Buy a map, learn to read a map, and if technology fails you, your map will come to the rescue.

Tip 3. Pack Snacks. Or full on meals. When I travel I always have a cooler full of drinks, and another cooler with food. You can use divided containers and make individual "bento" style meals for everyone in the car. Prep as much of the food as possible before you leave. Cut up fruit and veggies, preportion dips in lidded sauce cups, make sandwich. Free water bottles to act as ice.

Tip 4. Dress comfortable. You will be sitting in a car for hours on end, dress for comfort not style. Everyone has their own version of "comfortable" clothes. Wear what works for you.

Tip 5. You will need Gas. If you like doing the bulk of your driving at night, like I do, you will need to plot where you will get gas. Some stretches of road may not have an open gas station for many many miles (I am looking at you West Virginia). So find sizable cities and top off the tank when you pass through. 

Tip 6. When the car stops, everyone goes potty. This has been a family rule as long as I can remember. On road trips, if the car stops for gas, or we stop for food, everyone gets out and goes to the bathroom. Go even if you don't think you have to, you don't want to find yourself in a Tip. 5 situation with a full bladder and no bathroom. 

Tip. 7 Use zippered pouches to store things you may need during the trip, chargers, extra batteries, etc. When you need it, it will be easy to locate. 
Tip 8. Pack a decent 1st aid kit, full of supplies you may need in an emergency. Tweezers, nail clippers, bandaids, advil, antacids, small scissors, etc. This could be a list all on its own.

Tip 9. Don't make your itenerary so tight that you miss things. If you are rolling down the highway and see a sign for something that looks awesome( Mister Ed's Elephant Museum), stop, make memories. American has thousands, probably millions of interesting roadside attractions. 

Tip 10. If booking a hotel room, book directly with the hotel/company. Several times I have arrived at my hotel only to learn they had way overbooked, and only people who had booked directly with the hotel was getting rooms. This may not be everyone experience, and if you are not traveling to a big event it may not be an issue for you. Its happened enough for me to want to warn everyone of the possibility. If you must book through a 3rd party site, call the hotel and confirm your reservation.

~The Wonderful

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Hurt So Good

Road crews were out in force across my area today, attempting to dig us out from under a foot of snow. We are expected to get another 4 inches of snow tonight. I know some areas of the country get much more snow than this. I have friends in the Boston area that wish they only had a foot of snow to deal with. The last snow of this size my little part of the world received was way back in 1994. We were without power for weeks, school was out for a month. My father was snowed in a work leaving my mom, sister and I at home to brave the weather.

We dragged our mattresses into the living room, closed off every non essential room and spent our days playing board games by candle light. In the evenings we used the precious battery operated radio to tune into a request show. All of our local stations had been kick off-air by the storm, we never learned where this station was from, always seeming to miss the FCC required station ID’s.

One caller stood out, and to this day, 21 years later we still mimic her call, bring her up in conversation, and wonder aloud what ever became of her.

The request was simple. The lady, who sounded middle age, with a thick country accent wanted to hear John Mellencamps “Hurt So Good”. The DJ asked if she would like to dedicate the song to someone special and she said “My man loves it when I dance on our 3 legged table, and when I fall off it HURTS SO GOOD”

Here’s to snow days, three legged tables, and making memories.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Snow days

Snow started falling around 3am, by the time we ventured out to the chickens 5 inches covered the ground. Kentucky doesn't do snow. When in advance of the storm the weather station called this a "potentially historic snowfall" people flocked to the stores. Shelves were emptied. An arctic front is dropping into our area, temperatures will be near or below freezing for the next week.

The Wonder Dogs have been out to play and potty. They are now curled up on heated beds enjoying a lazy Monday.
I see left over feijoada, hot chocolate, and snuggling in the future.

Snow provokes responses that reach right back to childhood.~Andy Goldsworthy
In the vein people in Louisville, Ky attempted to organize a massive snowball fight at Waterfront park. The event was shut down, for one reason or another. 

The Wonderful Garden

Sometime last winter while snuggling up with the dog wonders and a cup of Nutella hot chocolate I mentioned to the Wanderer that I would like to plant a few tomatoes in the back yard. This idea blossomed well beyond a some Roma's. By spring our a couple acres of side yard had been tilled up and planted with a myriad of veggies and melons, yes even my precious tomatoes. An old shed had been emptied and was slowly being converted into a coop. Two brooders in my kitchen housed tiny little chicks. The Wanderer and I had thrown ourselves full force into farm life.

I have gardened off an on since childhood, and have tended chickens on occasion. The Wanderer, despite owning a pair of bibbed overalls had never farmed. A nice neighbor from up the road used his tractor break the ground for our garden. This is a great perk of living in farm country, neighbors are willing to lend a hand and offer helpful advice and guidance.

This winter we have been plotting and planning our garden, huddling up with our Baker Creek catalog trying to decide what we want to plant next. I see at least one variety of Pepper Tomatoes in our future.

~The Wonderful

Saturday, February 14, 2015

The Paths We Take

Somebody should tell us, right at the start of our lives, that we are dying...Whatever you want to do, do it now! There are only so many tomorrows. ~Pope Paul VI

 I have made mistakes, stumbled down the wrong path only to come crawling back again. Now I am finding contentment in the simple things in life. Fluffy chickens in the yard, a garden full of fruit and veggies, snugly dogs sleeping at my feet while I write. I am a person trying hard not to let the mistakes of my past dominate my future. I am not where I thought I would be at this age, but I think I am right where I need to be.

For many years I have been an avid blog reader, my bookmarks is filled with links to blogs on various subjects. Recently the Wanderer has introduced me to the world of Podcasts. The motivation for this blog came from the changes the Wanderer and I have been going though, the journey we have chose to be on.

I am creative and crafty, don't be surprised if you see an occasional craft project pop up on this page. I love to cook, and bake, expect recipes. I live for a good roadtrip, expect adventures.

~The Wonderful

Friday, February 13, 2015

Serendipity, or ways we change over time.

When you wake up, and everything has changed.

You know, if current me ran into a wayward futuristic time traveller, and time traveled to 2005 and told old me "Hey, you know something, you will WANT to garden, you will WANT to raise chickens, you will WANT to live off the land..."  I would have laughed at that version of me.  

Until recently (last 3-4 years) I could have cared less about my impact on this world.  I could have cared less if a crew would have came in and clear cut the forest behind my house.  Or that I feel it was perfectly normal to hop in a vehicle and drive 20 minutes each direction to get food.  I would have thought it ludicrous to want to sit outside around a fire at night, lay in a hammock by day.

I would have not appreciated the hard work involved in taking a seed, water it daily if it was dry, and working it to harvest.  I know I could have did better with that garden this year.  Two surgeries based on my former lifestyle proved to be a major hinderance.  If you would have told me after reading all the books on raising chickens, I could somehow keep 10 chicks alive until maturity... Oh what a year it's been.

Hello,  I am just a Wanderer.  A Wanderer of the world, a Wanderer of life, a Wanderer in the most literal sense.  I am in the middle of a life changing transition.  I'm working to get healthy.  I am working for a change.  In my life.  In your life.  In the world.  We take life too seriously, to sit back and enjoy WHAT we have.  Whether you believe in a higher being, deity, power, or subscribe to a host of other theories... You cannot deny, even the plainest things on earth, have an inherent beauty to it.  I hope to show you this blog, and be able to look back upon these works myself when I am older, a journey through life.  A journey of discovery.  I love to cook, I love to grow (gardening, planting, mentally, and skills), and love to create.

The Wanderer is how I shall be known.  Because honestly, that's all I am.