June 2009 Chickens in the Road Newsletter

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June 2009 Chickens in the Road Newsletter


*Story: Hiking the Appalachian Trail
*Kitchen Extra: Ice Cold
*Embarrassing Photo of the Month: The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same
*My Favorite Thing Right Now: Thistledew Farm
*Recent Highlights: Planting by the Moon, Pie with Beef & Italian Peppers, Goodbye to a Wash House, and Two, Count ’em, Two Miniature Donkeys, and More
*Sneak Peek: Yes, Pepsi, There is a Sprite
*Blast from the Past: The Ornery Angel

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*Story: Hiking the Appalachian Trail


I’ve always wanted to hike the Appalachian Trail. It’s been a lifelong dream. Recently, without telling a soul, I headed off to the Shenandoah Valley and hopped onto the trail at Harper’s Ferry.


It was hot. I was courageous in the face of the heat and even sudden rain and beating wind. The geese cheered me on.


Are you buying any of this? I didn’t think so.

Okay, I made a quickie overnight trip to the Shenandoah Valley this weekend to pick up Morgan from camp at Shepherd University. The Appalachian Trail runs right through nearby Harper’s Ferry.


I stopped for a few pics and walked the trail for, oh, about 20 feet.



The Shenandoah Valley is a gorgeous area. Shepherdstown is in West Virginia at the Maryland border. The scenery there is amazingly picturesque–flowing fields of corn, rows upon rows of peach orchards, and incredibly manicured farms. I was lazy and took very few pictures, but I did take this shot of one of our two accidental trips to Pennsylvania. (Wrong turn, both times.)


Other highlights of the trip included the truck breaking down and having to stop for repairs, and getting lost leaving Martinsburg (didn’t even end up in Pennsylvania that time).

I also couldn’t help myself when I saw how close we were to Boonsboro, Maryland, the home of Nora Roberts and her famed little bookshop, Turn the Page.


What kind of Nora stalker would I be if I didn’t drop in?

I mean, you KNOW Nora would be disappointed if I didn’t stop to see her!

Only she wasn’t there. What is up with that?


Next time I’m in town, I’m gonna let Nora know in advance so she can be waiting for me at her shop.

Or, you know, so she can head to Canada or something……

*Kitchen Extra: Ice Cold

Here’s my summertime tip for keeping your glass of wine ice cold on hot days–wine cubes!

Freeze cubes of wine and pop them out into your glass to keep wine frosty-cold without watering it down. You can even add grapes to each cube before freezing, or sliced fresh fruit, which makes the cubes pretty and fun plus leaves you with a little treat at the end of your glass. I’m using sliced strawberries here.

Here’s to lots of summertime wine sipping on the porch in the evening after chores are done!


*Embarrassing Photo of the Month: The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same

Another seriously tragic photo revealed.


My office-slash-soon-to-be-craft-room looks exactly the same as it did in last month’s newsletter. I think I need an intervention.

Even the cat is ashamed of me.

*My Favorite Thing Right Now: Thistledew Farm

honey-moonI’m always behind and always late. (Just ask my kids.) I ordered both last year and this year for Father’s Day from Thistledew Farm, a small West Virginia company specializing in honey and other bee-related products. I love their decorative honey jars and sent my dad the Honey Moon jars in light and dark honey. Why I love them right now is because I was ordering on Thursday and Father’s Day was Sunday. This is typical for me. They had no dark Honey Moon jars ready, but poured one just for me and then made a special trip to the post office that afternoon to send the honey by the cheapest route possible, U.S. postal service flat rate, and they actually got my gift there by Saturday afternoon. I highly recommend them! (They are perfect for disorganized, late people like me! And you can’t beat West Virginia honey.)

*Recent Highlights: Planting by the Moon, Pie with Beef & Italian Peppers, Goodbye to a Wash House, and Two, Count ’em, Two Miniature Donkeys, and More

Finally meet Pocohontas, then meet Jack, and don’t forget Sausage and Patty! See all my cute farm animal stories here.

Posts in cooking included Deep Dish Apple Pie, Pie with Beef & Italian Peppers (Oliverio peppers, yum!), and my long-lost and reinvented Gingerbread with Nutty-Buttery Broiled Topping. Don’t miss a thing! Get all my recipes.

June was all about goodbyes in Country Living as I said farewell to the wash house, goodnight to spring, and my eldest said goodbye and good riddance to high school (while I stood by in disbelief). See all my country living stories.

Find out how to plant by the moon, build a truly creepy scarecrow, and what all not to do in your garden. See all my garden stories.

Also see all my posts in crafts.

*Sneak Peak: Yes, Pepsi, There is a Sprite

Photo courtesy Bob Lewis

Sprite has landed! Well, not here as in on our farm, she’s still in Tennessee, but Sprite (on the left in the photo above) has been born and she’ll be coming to Stringtown Rising Farm to join Pepsi later this summer. Here’s how Bob describes Sprite’s coloring: “She’s black with a white forehead and white striping as you can see from the picture. She also has the neatest white pattern inside her ears…looks like she was standing around when someone spray painted and caught the overspray.”

Won’t Sprite and Pepsi make beautiful babies!

*Blast from the Past: The Ornery Angel

It was a year ago that I first posted about my travails with the Ornery Angel. I posted an Ornery Angel update after I tried to kiss up to her to get her to move out of my way on the road, and also posted about when Coco had An Unfortunate Affair with Rat Dog. Here’s the most recent update: Coco’s been in heat again (no, we didn’t breed her this time, either) and the Ornery Angel completely cooperated by keeping Rat Dog at home for the duration.


She even gave us Sausage and Patty. That’s a lot of progress in a year!

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