Our gate stopped squeaking

Many visitors come up to the caretaker’s house on Deal Island – to say hello, ask us how we got here, ask about weather reports, walks, fishing. They are announced by our squeaky gate. We don’t have a doorbell but when the gate squeaks, we are forewarned. I don’t believe anyone has oiled it since we were here four years ago and I don’t plan to either.


It won’t be squeaking for at least the next week. Today the wind has gusted to almost 70 knots and similar weather is forecast for the next week. The wind whistles through the house. When we came back from checking the rainfall this morning, my vision was weird. My eyeballs were reacting to bp being pummeled in my head and showed me a central, spinning fan-like image.


Today was rainy and windy. The rain should let up but we can expect gale force winds for the next week. We could watch the pressure fall on the barometer in the radio room. Our anemometer showed sustained wind of 40 knots with gusts to 50. There was a time when I was mildly obsessed with the Beaufort Scale. We have force 6 – 8 winds, walking is extremely difficult. No mention of eyeballs vibrating.

The wind did something to this feather unless there’s a curly raven species.


This was all preceded by another lovely sunset. So much for, “Red sky at night, sailor’s delight”.

Gales keep the visitor count down and the fence quiet.

Dramatic weather


The gale forecast for this weekend arrived last night with 50 knot winds, rain, and perhaps a little hail. The house shuddered, the windows rattled but remained intact. Knock on wood, the roof isn’t leaking as it did our last visit but word is, it needs to be replaced.

We kept an eye on one boat anchored across the way, in west cove on Erith Island. We had tried unsuccessfully to hail it on the radio to talk about the limited, good holding ground there. Happily this morning they are still anchored, although not where we saw them last. Must have been a harrowing night.

Adirondack fall

Adirondack fall is a brief lovely season. With six weeks until winter, we had our first light snowfall this weekend and the temperature dropped to 17 degrees f.

My Irish Moss sweater is well underway. There’s a tiny chance I may memorize the pattern, but not yet. I love the alpaca-merino, soft, light and warm. So does Shirley.

I got around to pickling the venison heart today. I boiled it for several hours with a carrot, onion and celery, then poured a brine over it and let it sit under a weighted plate all day. Next it’s to the fridge. Tasted yummy.

We’ve received a bounty of winter squash from our farm share and I baked my first pumpkin pie of the season. My Oxo good mill did the hard work. Funny how the pie came out though.

We’ve had a few picnic dinners in the cabin but haven’t screwed up the courage to sleep in it yet. Lots of excuses- have to get up for work, too cold, forgot my sleeping bag, etc. one day. Tim writes about it here.


Scoured sky

Yesterday’s gale scrubbed the sky.

Today was sunny, windy and a perfect temperature. We hauled the various commemorative benches to the whistle house, finished packing up the gift shop, after numerous purchases by me, and did my final weed whacking.
That left plenty of time for photo ops and knitting. I’m on my third climbing deer hat and am a little dizzy.


Then I shared the same sunset you saw but mine had a cruise ship on the horizon.

S’mores for dessert and now I’m ready for bed. Good night, sweet dreams.

Blowin’ Stink

What’s a lighthouse without a gale and a little fog thrown in. The new fog horn has been on since 3:00 am. The wind has whipped things around outside and surf is crashing. We couldn’t leave if we wanted to. What could be better? We even have the latest Stephen King book, Doctor Sleep, the sequel to The Shining.

I walked around the cove and nearby trails this morning before it started pouring. Then the rest of the day was devoted to indoor projects.

It’s been very peaceful with the sound of the fog horn, wind and surf. We went up the tower when the wind picked Up. Someone polished the First Order Fresnel lens this summer and it looks pristine. Those photos will follow later.
As I was getting dinner ready tonight, I saw the crescent moon and Venus. Did you?

Two more food substitutions I forgot to mention. I received a gift of raspberry honey from a friend before we left and threw it in with the provisions. It has glazed carrots, sweetened and flavored apple pie, added a nice touch to beef stir fry and glazed currant scones.

I HAVE NO VANILLA! Bushmill’s Irish Honey Whiskey is a nice substitute.

Enough weather

This is my last weather post for a while.  It should settle into normal spring weather at this point, right? No more snow.  IMG_9044Good old thunderstorms instead.


We had a slew of visitors, 4 sets, last week!  The first set arrived the day we learned our well had bacteria in it.  Ouch.  I began boiling water and advising guests.  Then the rains came and the rivers rose.


It was very dramatic at the local gorge.

I found a quiet moment or two to get back to spinning.  The funny thing is, I don’t think I took this photo but there it was, on my camera.  Very nice.  Andre?


I am spinning a local alpaca fleece from the lock.  I washed it last year or so and now  I just grab a lock, flick it on a brush and spin away.  I have been plying it with some Blue Faced Leicester and may dye it with my lichen stash.  What will it be, what will it be?

The Indigo Bunting woke me yesterday and I managed to get a better photo of it later in the day.  Dawn is about 4:30 here and the birds sing their little hearts out.  Better than an alarm clock but  I wish I could set it a little later.


Snow day

Too bad the kids have off for Memorial Day. They might have had a snow day.

30 inches in the mountains yesterday! This photo was taken from @SkiWhiteface, the Whiteface Mountain Twitter page, on May 25, 2013.


Memorial Day like November

This is why I am still eating root vegetables in May.  There was snow in the mountains today!

So while those of you downstate are munching on fresh lettuce and tomatoes, I am still eating the remains of cold storage.  Potatoes and kale are finished but beets, carrots and parsnips abound.  I started a hydroponic garden about a month ago and this weekend, we shared about 8 pieces of arugula, mustard greens and lettuce among four people.  And it was good.

image  There comes a time in mid spring, where I have to have fresh greens and fruit after a long winter of root vegetables.  I threw slow food to the wind and bought mangos, pineapples, oranges and cherries.  Don’t judge me.


More spring visitors

Avian and mammal.  Spring brings feathered friends and family.  All welcome.

Bluebirds found the new house by the cabin and are making a nest. IMG_9017

My sister-in-law and I walked through the grasslands and she spotted a Chestnut sided warbler by the road.  You can just make it out hidden to the left in the brambles.  It’s not the large tan leaf in the upper rightChestnut sided warbler.  IMG_9020She also spotted an Indigo bunting just outside our screened in porch.IMG_9004

The lilacs are in bloom all around us. Their scent is the harbinger of spring.  With nice weather, cool (40f) nights, visitors return to the Adirondacks in heaps.  I love hosting guests during this time of year although there was snow in the forecast for tonight (Memorial Day Weekend)!

So I clean my house before guests arrive.  Tim likes to wait until they leave.  Any thoughts?

Snow is in the forecast but the birds are unaware

The temperature is below freezing again but hasn’t stopped the bird migration. It seems every day we hear new songs and see more species at the feeder. This morning a flock of common redpolls stopped by for a frenetic visit. Mourning doves have returned and their song echoes in the woods.

Today a plump, Tufted Titmouse was stopped by and settled in the tree among the spring buds.
tufted titmouse

As long as the birds don’t care about our Hazardous Weather Outlook, neither will we.