We don't pay a lot of attention to holidays, except once in awhile I remember to buy something special at the grocery store. This year it was some all-beef hotdogs that if Mr. Troutbend had been along I wouldn't have bought because he'd give me the fish eye for not choosing the cheapest ones in the meat case. And I'l make some limoncello gelato tomorrow.
The best cheap hot dogs I ever made was for a community picnic. Recipe: Just put a big bunch of hot dogs in a crock pot, no water. Cook them several hours, and take to the picnic still in the crock part so they stay hot longer. They're really good fixed that way, juicy and tender, not water-logged.
My grade school classmates are having a 50 year class reunion next weekend, and I am planning to go. I didn't graduate from that small-town high school, went to the bigger school in the same school district. It is nice of those 'kids' to include me in their invite. It was a very small class, maybe 30 people at the most, and some of them have probably died in the meantime.
Our cold weather finally moved east and the sun came out. The night time lows are still going to hover around 33 degrees, but within in the next couple of weeks we expect to see 40 degree then maybe 50 degree nights. We have a very short growing season here, and try to plant vegetables with the shortest time to maturity.
Last summer's long-term renters stopped by to say hello today. He is a road construction worker, and stayed in our guest cabin until our regular guests were coming. He'd leave for the few days they were here, and then come back for a few more weeks. And in the month of June, his wife came from their home in New Mexico and stayed with him. They said it was their first 'vacation' together in years.
Before he left last year, he helped us move furniture around over there - replaced a double bed with twin beds that we had in storage. It's easy to say 'rearrange furniture,' but juggling mattresses and armoires around between an attic and storage shed and bedroom is a big project that we couldn't have done without a good strong helper. Now, the guest cabin has one double bed, a double futon with good quality mattress, and the twin beds. It was built in 1913, and the bedrooms aren't big enough for queen or king size beds, so our guests have to rough it a little bit.
Our first guests of the season are coming May 31 for three nights, then a little break and then guests from Illinois for a week. They return nearly every year, and I always bake a sugar-free cherry pie for him. He is a Chevrolet salesman. Next is a couple from Nebraska who come on big motorcycles. Last year he bent our ear for 45 minutes bragging about his new Harley that cost $22,000. The conversation would stray to other topics, and come right back to that one.
The next ones are customers of the Chevrolet salesman. They went to the dealership to get an oil change and mentioned wanting to go on vacation, so he called me and we booked it on the spot.
After that the ones who're coming May 31st are returning for the Fourth of July. I'm going to reserve the fishing for him as a frequent flyer type appreciation.
August isn't booked yet, but a lot of our guests don't make plans very far in advance. Maybe the cousins with the 6 or so kids (I lost count) will come that month for a few days. It's nice to see them somewhat regularly so we can catch up on how many more babies they've had since last time.
September has two regulars - one family is from Iowa. He works at the State Fair, and they take their vacation after it ends. Last year she gave me a bunch of produce from their garden, and canned goods. I am trying to keep track of her jars so I can return them.
Immediately after them is a family that's been coming the same time in September for ten years. Their daughter used to date one of the motorcycle people's friends (the ones above with the Harley) and I used to worry that she was looking a bit like a meth head. But then she broke up with that guy and looks great. He came back a few times with other girlfriends and finally a wife who might have been a mail order bride. I don't cross-talk between the two groups - for example I don't say to Rhonda: 'what do you hear from Shayne these days." They all come from the same small town in Nebraska, so probably know all about what the others are doing without my help. These Nebraska people also bring me produce from their garden, much appreciated.
That's the summer, all laid out. The cabin isn't booked solid, but it's about as booked as it needs to be, so we can do some maintenance in between guests. Mr. Troutbend might install new linoleum in the kitchen, and the outside needs painted, or at least touched up.
The guest cabin taken from our cabin. This is an old photo - some things have changed, but you get the idea.