Well. Busy Saturday. Mostly personal rambling, because I have a terrible memory and otherwise sometimes don’t know where my whole life goes. Discussion of guns, potpourri, and babysitting.
Made potpourri the other night, which went to the market yesterday and sold about $30 worth, which pays for the ingredients, hurrah. Shopped at the farmer’s market, cleaned Middle-Little’s kitchen sink and counter, laid out the Master Plan for how she’s rearranging her furniture, planned future sessions of cleaning because she’s hosting a party next weekend, and then us two middle sisters went up to our absent, vacationing parents’ house to feed their cat and practice shooting the hunting rifle I intend to use for deer season. Then we cut and made about 15 grapevine wreaths to make into Halloween and generic-autumnal decor to sell at the farmer’s market. And then we drove out to a gun shop and bought ammunition to replace the hunting rifle’s ammo that we’d been practicing with. We also stopped by a craft store to get inspiration for this autumnal decor we’re making to sell.
Gun stores are weird, man. I was going to buy a rifle cleaning kit, since I know Dad has like a million but I don’t think there’s one at the farm– but the most basic ones were like, $30, for like, a couple of rags and a ramrod and a bottle of gun oil, and that’s dumb. I’ll research and pick up the components myself, and in the meantime, Middle Little has a cleaning kit I can borrow to clean the Winchester 94 that we were using. [That gun, by the way. I figured it was nice, and old, and such, but there was one in the gun store, used, same vintage, about the same model, and they wanted $700 for it, so holy shit.]
Also, a single box of Remington Winchester 32-30 hunting ammo is $40, so, like, god damn, I’m glad I decided to only shoot a couple of practice rounds.
(That’s from both of us. The low ones are when I started to get tired and decided I was done.) (If the deer is 50 feet away I’m all set. If it’s farther, well. I’m going to have to set up a longer range and practice, but I’m also thinking, well, I’m just not going to take any really long shots; I’m here for nuisance deer, and if they’re keeping their distance respectfully, I’m not so worried. Also 32-30 just isn’t that powerful a caliber for hunting, so I’m better off not trying to make a kill with a near-spent bullet. And given the kick on a 32, I don’t think I’m eager to use the 45-70 instead; Dad has a couple of those kicking around and I’m not super into it. My dirty secret is that I’m not really super into guns, I just think they’re kind of a rural life skill one needs.)
Then we made it back to the farm in time to take over care of Farmbaby so that Farmsister and her husband could get dressed up and go out to dinner, since they missed celebrating their anniversary about a month ago. Middle-Little and I cooked dinner and collaboratively looked after Farmbaby. She had spontaneously requested this, that her parents could leave for a night so she’d get to be babysat by both aunts, because this is something she enjoys. She was quite well-behaved for us, insofar as she’s capable– we did a lot of bargaining with her to get her to do anything, but she did all the things we wanted her to, with a minimum of fuss and no tantrums at all, so that was good.
(Yesterday morning as her mother and I were trying to leave for the farmer’s market and my meetup with Middle-Little, Farmbaby pitched a shrieking fit that involved hitting and pinching her mother and screaming about how she was a bad mother, because– here’s the thing– she was wearing shoes on her hands and wanted to go the market like that, and her mother said, well, you do what you want, but I don’t think it’s a good idea. “YOU NEVER LET ME DO WHAT I WANT,” Farmbaby shrieked upon hearing this, which was– it would have been funny if it weren’t so goddamn annoying. Like, kid, she didn’t say no. She just pointed out that you were likely to regret doing this. Ay yi yi. THREENAGERS.)
So anyway. She didn’t do that shit for us, which was great. Her parents came home so early, though– they hadn’t bothered trying to go see a movie, so they got home after their 5:30 dinner reservation and it was only 7:45 and the kid was still in the bathtub. So they snuck into the house, and went and hid in the living room.
Farmbaby finished her bath, and wrapped herself in her towel and set off to walk upstairs. This route goes past the living room. The door was shut, but the light shows in a crack underneath. I was some distance behind her, not really expecting her to react, but she saw the light, and said, “No, we can’t leave the light on in rooms we’re not in!” and flung open the living room door. I didn’t know what to do, so I just braced myself.
She went in, turned out the lights, and came back out. “Grandpa hates it when we leave the lights on,” she told me, and continued up the stairs after shutting the living room door behind herself.
(It turns out her mother had heard her coming and ducked down below the couch back, so she didn’t see her. I was about to find out where her father was.)
We processed up the stairs, just as the bathroom door opened and her father came out. “Oh,” she said, spotting her father. “Hi, Daddy!”
“Did you sneak back into the house,” I said, not really knowing what to say.
“Yeah,” her father said, looking like a deer in headlights. “I just kind of snuck in. I’m gonna go again now, though. Go to bed, kid. Goodnight, I’ll see you later!”
“Okay,” said Farmbaby, and incredibly enough, continued down the hall and put herself into her pajamas, and at no point asked where her parents were. I read her far too much book, and she bargained and bargained for one more book, one more, so I read one more. And then she got out of bed. “I need a bedtime snack!”
Kiddo, you already brushed your teeth, you had a huge dinner, you had dessert and then like half a head of broccoli right before bath, you are not hungry. She started running around the upstairs shrieking and giggling, clearly intending to Be Bad, grabbing toys and throwing them and so on.
“Well,” I said. “I was going to sing you a song, but if you’re not going to go to bed, then I won’t.”
She instantly ran and climbed into bed and pulled the covers up to her chin. So I sang her two songs.
She fell asleep and I left, rather smug.
Today I need to measure the broken zipper on the case for the Winchester and order a replacement. I think I’m just going to replace the case, though– it would be probably easier to just make a whole new case, which I could do out of the material I have with me (which I brought to make yurt quilts but there is definitely extra), and anyway whose father wouldn’t want a handmade quilted scrap denim gun case lined with old draperies to replace the cracked plastic-leather one from the 60s with the busted zipper that it’s currently in? New nylon gun cases at the store are $45 and I can beat that. I might also practice my embroidery-machine quilting on it…
I also have to hang up those grapevine wreaths so they can dry. Some of them were pretty green in places.
This coming week I need to tidy the yurt and its surroundings, since my bestie is coming to camp out with her kids and I’ll need to clear out an area for tents. I can probably just mow the whole area, or use a weed whacker. I forgot my metal firebowl but I bet I can nab some rocks to make a firepit.
And I have to spend at least one evening at Middle-Little’s tidying, so I can come back with Farmsister and the pickup and get a filing cabinet and two coffee tables out of the apartment, which will let her rearrange furniture so her cocktail party will have adequate places to sit. (Bonus, then I’ll have a coffee table for the yurt.)