A bitter cold morning with temperatures well below freezing at 20F and a wind chill factor that drove it even lower. However we had sunny skies and sitting inside wasting a perfectly good sun drenched day was not an option. I knew it wouldn’t take Pheebs and I long to have us a tropical heat wave going on inside the Jeep so by 8:30 we had the Libby’s wheels rolling and headed for Tim Hortons ‘drive-thru’ in Clinton. Figured I’d give their carrot muffins one more try.
SOME COUNTRY ROADS HAVE ALREADY BEEN GRADED WHILE OTHERS STILL HAVE A BIT OF SNOW ON THEM
Slowly rolling north on the first country road east of Clinton I decided to conduct an impromptu autopsy on the muffin to see if I could find any actuall carrot chunk or two inside it. Aside from a few flecks of orange about the size of a pin head there was not much in the muffin in the way of carrots. Not like before and certainly not like McDonalds carrot muffins. Disappointing of course but that didn’t stop Pheebs and I from totally devouring the whole thing right down to the last crumb.
A FEW FINE LOOKING HORSES ALONG THE WAY
No particular destination in mind but we did make a quick stop in one of the Hullett Marsh’s parking lot areas where I let Pheebs out for a run. She had a nice warm fur coat on and I didn’t so it was in the tropical Jeep I stayed.
ANOTHER MONTH AND THERE WILL BE COLOR IN THOSE BARREN LOOKING TREES AND THE SWAMP FLOOR BELOW WILL BE TURNING GREEN
IT MAY BE TOTALLY FREEZING OUTSIDE BUT US GUYS WAS TOASTY WARM INSIDE
LOOKING FIRST NORTH THEN SOUTH ALONG THE MAITLAND RIVER NORTH OF AUBURN
THIS IS AN OLD SHALLOW RIVER CROSSING AND I SAW AMISH BUGGY TRACKS THROUGH HERE A COUPLE SUMMERS AGO AND THAT IS ACTUALLY A LARGE ISLAND IN THE MAITLAND RIVER OVER THERE
Wandering northwards I noticed they had a skiff of snow overnight. We didn’t get anything in the Bayfield area I know of. At least with the freezing temperatures this morning gravel roads were not muddy but highways had been salted so we were careful to stay off them.
MAPLE SAP PAILS ALONG A FARM LANE
MENDING FENCES ON A COLD MORNING
SPRING IS THE TIME FOR SPREADING MANURE ON THE FIELDS
After working our way north for a dozen miles or so I swung Libby’s nose west and we made our way over and touched on the south end of Mennonite Country. We were lucky enough to catch a horse and buggy as well as a team of horses pulling a wagon. Won’t be long and some of those same horses will be busy pulling plows over hill and dale.
We were back home about 11:30 making it a nice 3 hour country road drive for us. These little morning jaunts of ours sure help to start my days off on the right foot and keep the boredom bugs away.
I TOOK THIS LAST PHOTO IN MY SIDE VIEW MIRROR AFTER THE WAGON HAD PASSED
A Shout Box Guest asked how I put my blogs together and although I’ve written about this before things always have a habit of changing and evolving so I’ll give it another whirl from where I’m at now. My blog consists of 3 basic parts which have to come together at the end of the day to make it all work. There is the gathering and editing of photos, the writing, and the final matching up of photos and writing. No two days are exactly the same it seems in the exact order I do things. Here’s a typical day for me. Maybe something has been on my mind since the previous night or I’ve thought of something after waking up in the morning. If so that thought may end up being my first, third or last paragraph and if I don’t sit down right away at the computer that thought in all probability will be lost. So you could say some days I start my post as early as maybe 8 o’clock in the morning.
AMISH-MENNONITE FARMS ALONG THE WAY THIS MORNING
I KNOW THIS PHOTO IS A BIT TIPPED TO THE LEFT BUT IF I HAD STRAIGHTENED IT ANY MORE I WOULD HAVE LOST THE TOP OF THE WINDMILL….IT’S ONE OF THE PROBLEMS OF PHOTOGRAPHING FROM A MOVING VEHICLE…..I DO NOT LIKE STOPPING IN FRONT OF PEOPLE’S HOMES TO TAKE PICTURES…..EVERY PHOTO IN TONIGHT’S POST WAS TAKEN ON THE MOVE
A WHITE HOUSE WITH A RED BARN IN THESE PARTS IS PRETTY MUCH ALWAYS A MENNONITE PLACE
SPOTTED THESE PLASTIC MAPLE SAP BAGS UP IN MENNONITE-AMISH COUNTRY AND IT’S THE FIRST TIME I HAVE EVER SEEN PLASTIC BAGS USED
Through the day I may add another paragraph or two and sometimes I will sit down and basically write the whole post in the form of a rough draught in one shot but it’s usually the former. I might be outside raking leaves when an idea pops into my head so I will come inside and type it out before the idea pops back out of my head. The bulk of today’s post for example was written in about half an hour up to the point where I started to answer this question. Answering the question probably took me another half hour. Once I have the rough draft typed into paragraph form I am ready to add photos. I always write and compose first then add photos later.
IT IS NOT OFTEN ONE SEES A BARN WITH ALL NEW BARN BOARDS ON IT ANYMORE
Editing my posts photos every day is usually done sometime in the afternoon depending on how many photos I have and how busy I am with other things. I probably average about 40 photos (61 today) a day every day and every one of those photos I edit. Out of 40 photos I will probably end up with possibly 35 usable ones with maybe 25 or 30 making it into my post. Generally by late afternoon and before suppertime I have the photos done and ready to go.
UNUSUAL TO SEE A SUMMER HAY BALER ON A SNOWY ROAD
SOMETIMES WHEN I LOOK OVER PHEEBS EYES ARE CLOSED AS SHE SO ENJOYS HER JEEP RIDES
After supper which is probably around 5 I am ready to match up all the words with all the photos or in other words compose the final draft. And it is here where I edit what I have written as well. I may go over my blog 3 or 4 times looking for errors. Sometimes I may re-write an entire paragraph but usually it’s only a few lines here and there. Errors still escape me at times and it bothers me if I publish a post with mistakes in it. I’m finicky with my photos as well. I may miss mistakes there too but usually they are small enough that maybe only a fellow photography buff might notice them.
SEEING MORE AND MORE OF THESE MODERN ‘SMOKERS’ POPPING UP ON AREA FARMS
When I first started blogging years ago I did all of the above in the evenings mainly because I was much busier then with part time jobs etc. The problem I would always run into was ending up way too tired at the end of the day to do the best job I could do and because of that I would become frustrated and irritated. I reached a point where it was either give up the blog or make some necessary changes if I wanted to continue my enjoyable writing, traveling, and photography hobbies. And that’s when I started stretching things out over the course of a whole day. A little bit here a little bit there. Write, re-write, and edit.
I ALWAYS ENJOY LOOKING AT COUNTRY FARMS AND PROPERTIES
Okay, so here’s a rough breakdown on the time involved for me to put out a daily blog every day. These are all averages I am guessing at. Editing photos – 1 hour. Writing the first draft of my post – 1hour. Re-editing words and photos –1 hour. Final composition – 1 hour. So there it is, about 4 hours. Add to that another hour for all the times I sit here staring blankly at my keyboard trying to think of something to write. I have spent as much as 6 and 7 hours on a troublesome post and as little as a couple minutes on others. Oh ya and Groaner’s Corner usually soaks up about 15 minutes each day looking for a joke or two as well:))
STILL A FEW OLD LONE SILOS STANDING IN THE COUNTRYSIDE
Okay to wrap this all up…….Some may ask and wonder why would anyone want to invest so much of their time in doing a blog anyway. Well I’ve answered that question for myself and readers many times so we’ll just leave it at that for now and know that it is an enjoyable and important hobby for me.
GROANER’S CORNER:(( I went back to my home town and decided to visit the house I grew up in.
I asked the occupants if I could come inside. They said, "No!" My parents can be so grouchy some times!!
Six guys were playing poker when Smith loses $500 on a single hand, clutches his chest and drops dead at the table. Showing respect for their fallen comrade, the other five complete their playing time standing up. Roberts looks around and asks, "Now, who is going to tell the wife?" They draw straws. Rippington, who is always a loser, picks the short one. They tell him to be discreet, be gentle, don't make a bad situation any worse than it is. "Gentlemen! Discreet? I'm the most discreet man you will ever meet. Discretion is my middle name, leave it to me." Rippington walks over to the Smith house, knocks on the door, the wife answers, and asks what he wants. Rippington says, "Your husband just lost $500 playing cards." She hollers, "TELL HIM TO DROP DEAD!" Rippington says, "Okay I'll go tell him”.