Merriman Farm

Merriman Farm
8.75 Acres + House and Barn

Davis Road, Harpswell, Maine

Davis Road, Harpswell, Maine
Summers on Harpswell Sound

Kell, Jon and Chris

Kell, Jon and Chris
The Kids

Perfect Touch

Perfect Touch
Merriman Quilt

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Nan and Bobby at Cook's

Nan and Bobby at Cook's
Christmas - 2011

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Columbus Day Weekend

Fall is well underway and Bobby has just mowed for the last time. 

It will be a long winter, but we have projects lined up and we'll be going south to Concord whenever we can get away. 

Bobby is having surgery for a malignant melanoma  fairly soon.  The doctor thinks it's early on, so he doesn't seem to be too worried.   We are confidant all will be well.  We just want to get it behind us.

This is Canadian Thanksgiving, so I wish all my Canadian friends a wonderful day and lots of yummy turkey and pumpkin pie. 

I joined a couple of art leagues and have taken up painting again.   It's been quite a few years so I'm not expecting to land in a museum.  I've had fun getting acquainted with all the new products available.  I've met some wonderful new friends and after all - that's what it's all about, isn't it?

We ask for your prayers in the days ahead.  I keep telling Bobby that God wouldn't drop him in my lap and then take him away so soon.   How wonderful to have found the Love of my Life in my golden years. 

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Sumer in a nutshell

We have been wicked busy since the wedding.

We started moving out of my apartment in Concord and into our new condo in Concord.  Moving is not my favorite chore - you just have to keep you eye on the ball - the end result.

Bobby and I went on our honeymoon cruise - his 12th and my 1st.  We had a wonderful time and even managed to visit old friends and relatives in Halifax.  I loved having our breakfast served in the morning.  I could get used to that.

Continued moving in that God awful heat.  We have to leave Dukie, our cat, at the farm when we go to Concord, so our time is limited. 

Went to Calais/ St. Stephen for International Festival week and saw some old friends.  Visited our best man and family on the way to Calais and met the new fiancee.  Nice to have a wedding to look forward to. 

Back home for a few days and back to Concord for the countdown on the final move.   Our bedroom  furniture had been moved while we were on our way back to Maine with the dining room hutch.  We weren't sure how they fit the bedroom furniture and closet in, but everything fit just perfectly.  Allelujah!

Broom swept the apartment, locked the door and otta there.  We hired a cleaning lady for the heavy cleaning.  I just didn't have it in me.  The heat never let up. 

It was the hottest summer I remember so the swimming pool at the condo was a welcome relief.

My wonderful son-in-law came to the condo and put up cabinets, mirrors, shelves and whatever else needed to be attached to the walls.  I am so lucky my daughter married such a giving man.

We are back at the farm with a dazed look in our eyes.  We did it!!

The barn swallows left on the 22nd - the same day as last year.  We were so sad to see them go.  Thank you little swallows for keeping the farm free of mosquitos for the entire summer. 

Our replacements are out in the field, Canadian Geese.  There are about 150 of them.  They'll stick around for a couple of months before they head south.

The kids and grandkids are coming for the weekend and we have 20 lobsters on order.  Time to get into high gear and get this place in shape. 

I'm planning my quilting strategy for winter and have all my quilting supplies upstairs in Clara's old apartment.  What a perfect spot. 

We are so blessed.  

Monday, July 9, 2012

Perfect Wedding

It's been a little over a week since the big day.  We are finally rested and back to normal. 

It was the most perfect day.  The sun was shining out on the hill.  All our friends were here and it was wonderful having the children and grandchildren participate.

The ceremony overlooking Harpswell Sound was very meaningful and touching.   I found the Love of my Life in my twilight years and will be forever grateful.

Everyone enjoyed the lobster.  Bobby and I even got a taste.  We had another lobster feed before the kids went home on Wednesday.

It was so much fun having all our children and grandchildren here at the farm for a few days.  Bobby took the grandkids clamming - a big hit.

Clara's apartment has never seen so much action.  There was plenty of room for all our guests.

We will be setting up our condo in NH sometime this summer.  That will be lots of fun and we're looking forward to visiting back and forth.



A short honeymoon awaits at some point.  In the meantime, we'll enjoy the beautiful weather here on the hill.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Arrival of Tent and Pottie

The weather this weekend is supposed to be very warm and sunny.   All that praying paid off.

The pottie arrived yesterday and the tent has just been erected.   We should have plenty of room for everyone to sit under the tent, plus a few tables. 

We'll have a table for music and have lots of Old Time Rock 'n Roll CD's. 

I ironed our wedding attire and put it upstairs in the bedroom we'll be using.  I was told by a friend who is psychic not to do that.  We had an unknown "visitor" last night.  The dog went nutso and I couldn't get him to stop shaking.  He kept looking upstairs. 

I told all the old ghosts from this two hundred year old house to rest easy.  We have an agenda and it will all happen regardless.

I guess I'll go back upstairs and bring the wedding clothes back down.  Never hurts to be cautious.

This will be my last entry till after the big day.

See everyone on the hill.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Countdown to our Wedding

The time is going by too fast and we are trying to tie up all the loose pieces of the puzzle.

We are asking everyone to pray that the fog will lift by 2:00 PM so that we can say the words out on the hill overlooking the ocean. 

A big crowd of friends, neighbors and relatives is expected and we have kitchen ladies, bartenders, lobster cookers and parking valets all set to go. 

Bobby and I will be kicking back and just letting everything fall into place on our day.

The picture marks the spot where we'll be standing.

Life is so good!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Nan and Bobby's Office Under the Stairs

This is the 13th, my lucky number. 

The days are flying by and there are still some things to do to prepare for our big day. 

The good thing is that the price of lobster is down which means we can order more right off the boat.  We have two lobster cookers lined up.  We have a couple of turkeys cookers and that should do it.

We found a perfect spot for the little desk our neighbor gave us.  I think she'll be pleased as it's the first thing you see when you come into the house. 

The neighbors still have rooms in case anyone needs to stay over. 

The kareoke machine is ready to go and we've been playing all sorts of music and dancing around the house. 

We will have help the weekend before for last minute touches. 

Whew!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Clara's Bedroom

The stenciled room is complete.

It was pretty easy and involved a lot of cleaning and finding drapes to cover the "not so good" parts of the walls. 

It's amazing what you can find at Goodwill and the Salvation Army.  Pinch pleated drapes seem to be few and far between, but you can always find them at the big "G" and SA.

Bobby had some drapery rods in the barn and we were able to use them and cover some problem areas. 

The mowing here at the farm in very labor intensive.  When it doesn't rain, Bobby mows. 

The end of the month is close at hand and that means we have one month to go.  Lots of last minute things to attend to.

My daughter and husband are coming early to give us a hand.  They are excellent organizers and will whip us right into shape. 

Memorial Day parade today.  Thank you to all the Veterans who fought for our freedom.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Lilac time

The purple and white lilacs are in full bloom. 

The scent is glorious coming in the windows of the old farmhouse.  Bobby and I have picked several bouquets and have them throughout the house as well.

The big event is fast approaching and we are so excited about seeing so many old friends from near and far.  Is there anything more fun than having a big get together with friends and family and a lobster feed? 

We have added lots of power to the garage so that we have plenty of hot pots for all the food.  We even have a gas stove out there for cooking the lobster.   We also added power for the campers that are coming.  It's been a long time since the farm has had this much action.

The last month will be a busy one with all the last minute preparations. 

I'll make lots of lists.

Clara's bathroom came out pretty well considering what it looked like before we started.  A little paint does wonders. 




Friday, May 11, 2012

Scamper

I finished up the curtains for the camper which is parked next to the garage.  It looks reall nice and homey.  The best part is "no leaks" after all this drenching rain.

The bathroom upstairs is looking pretty good and has a new tub enclosure.  We did the best we could with the ancient bathtub. 

Plans are moving along for our wedding in June.  We are praying for good weather but will have a wonderful day no matter what the weather is. 

Clara Merriman would be thrilled to see her apartment upstairs looking so spiffy.  We are still undecided about the stenciled room.  We will probably put the curtains back up, clean the rug and call it "done" for now.


Life is good - actually life is pretty wonderful.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Yard Sales

Today was the beginning of yard sales.

I forgot so had to get dressed quickly as the early bird gets the worm. 

We weren't disappointed and found quite a few hot pots for the big day coming up in June. 
The electrcician is coming next week to put more outlets in the garage where the food will be set up.

We have a lobster cook in charge of the clams and lobsters.   We need another kitchen lady but still have time to find someone.  Have two bartenders ready to go.

We heard a rumor that Shaw's wouldn't be renewing their lease and that's where we ordered the wedding cake.  Guess I'd better find out when their lease is up.  Hate to think I'd have to make that big as cake.

The electrician is going to put outside outlets in for big camping rigs.  We'll have at least two set up in the yard.

The bathroom upstairs is about a day away from completion.  It's a "learn as you go" project. 

Bean supper tonight at the Senior Center.  We really know how to splurge. 

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Clara's Kitchen

I hadn't wallpapered in thirty years. 

It was an accident that we looked under the old wallpaper in the kitchen upstairs at the farm.  Then we lost our heads and the next thing we knew, we had taken all the old wallpaper off.

There was a pattern with salt and pepper shakers - fifties for sure; then a pattern with lighthouses and small boats; a geometric pattern that I bet Clara was glad to get rid of and the last paper was a blue design - popular in the eighties. 

We spent ten minutes at Lowe's, the only place we could find that had wallpaper.  I picked a plain textured paper in a beige color that I thought would hide all the bumps and blips.  We used four double rolls and didn't have to match the paper.  Horrah!

The result of our efforts is quite amazing considering what the cat's apartment looked like. 

The next project will be the bathroom.  We arn't going to be too fussy. 


Two months to go before the big day.

Monday, April 2, 2012

The Room at the Top of the Stairs

Back in the 1700's, every old farmhouse had the front stairs by the front door and the back stairs which went down into the kitchen. 

This old house is no exception.  However, the back stairs seemed like perfect place to store the dog and cat food since no one used the stairs anymore. 

After moving the roll top desk out of the room at the top of the stairs, we discovered what a nice little room it is and that you could put a double bed in there.  It had been sheet rocked back in the 80's when the house was renovated. 

After some serious cleaning and vacuuming, there was nothing to do but paint the floor. 

There are two windows in that room to bring in a nice cool breeze. 

Now we are in search of a double bed and I'm sure we'll find just the thing. 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

End of an Era

A surprise this morning to wake up to snow on the ground.  It's been such a mild winter, I'm still expecting a wopper of a snowstorm in April.

We had a wonderful weekend in Concord.  Friday night the whole family met at Newick's for my birthday.  There were ten of us and we had a wonderful evening. 

Sunday was Tyler's eighth birthday at Jon and Joane's house.  It's always so much fun to go to family events and see everyone. 

Tyler is an amazing young man and so sweet and caring.  Little sister Julianna is precious.  We are so excited about then coming this summer for the wedding and a family camping week. 

Cloe the cat waited till we got home to tell us she was ready to go.  We are taking her this morning and our hearts are heavy.  She would be eighteen April 15th.  That's a long life for a cat but it doesn't make it any easier.

Life goes on.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Stenciling - 1823

The wallpaper in the upstairs bedroom had lifted at the seams.  We couldn't stand looking at it another minute and before we knew it, it was coming off in sheets. 

Taking wallpaper off is very addictive.  Once you start, you can't stop. 

The pink stenciling under the three layers of wallpaper is quite striking.  I'm sure they were sick of it back in the day, but the walls were in excellent shape considering the age.

We decided to leave the stenciling.  We'll paint all the woodwork and the ceiling.  Then we'll take up the old carpeting and paint the wide board flooring. 

That will take care of the dust and the room will be clean. 

The days have been very beautiful and this is the first day of spring.  The grass is turning green and the daffodils are coming up. 

Preparations are well underway for the upcoming events in June.  I am documenting all the progress.  There sure will be lots of excitement here at the Farm.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Merriman Quilt

Perfect spot for the Merriman Farm quilt.  The Merriman ladies from the 1800's would be proud.

New Project

I have two rooms upstairs to tackle. 

We got the old gas stove moved out of the kitchen yesterday.  It's down in the garage in case we need it for the big party in June. 

The kitchen looks like something out of a movie set.  I wonder what's under that old wallpaper.  Once I decide to look, the dye is cast.

Then there's Clara's room.  No one can figure out what to do with it because there's pink stenciling under the wallpaper from the 1700's. 

We already took her dresser out and put it in the new bedroom because it matched the new four poster bed.  It looks wonderful in there.

The top of the dresser touches the ceiling.  I have no idea how we got it in there but thank God it had feet on the bottom that we could take off. 

I went up with my coffee this morning to admire our hard work and noticed that the mirror reflects the water just perfectly.  What a plus!

We tried my laptop on the roll top desk and it works. The Wifi is in the room just below so it picks up the signal. 

Will have to bring all my poems and stories back from Concord so that I can formulate a plan on what to write about next. 

We are getting all kinds of offers from neighbors with extra bedrooms for our out-of-town guests.  The spots are filling up fast so let us know.

We are picking up a grill today that we saw on Craigslist.  Sounds like a corker as we say here in Maine.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Four Poster Bed

Good Morning from the coast of Maine.

It's a foggy morning, but a good day to get things done.  Bobby figured out how to take apart the roll top desk yesterday and we moved it into the new queen bedroom.  Now the drawers are locked and he is figuring how to free them up. 

It's in a perfect spot overlooking the ocean.  I hope I can be inspired to write something racy in that spot.  If not racy, something that won't put you to sleep.

We purchased the most gorgeous four poster bed two days ago.  We found it on Craigslist.  It goes perfectly in the room and we have a dresser that used to belong to Clara, the previous owner.  It matches the bed to a tee.  Now the trick will be moving it.

Dukie, the Maine Coon Cat, is right next to me and has his paw on the computer as I write.  He's a pretty funny guy and rules the roost here at the farm.

The biggest problem with all this fixin' and doing is running out of gas - physically.  We were in bed last night at 8:30 PM to watch NCIS, but of course, fell asleep in about five minutes.

Yesterday was my daughter Kelley's birthday.  She was thrilled with the surprise delivery of two sets of roses, one from her husband Jeff and one from her brother Jon. 

We will celebrate when we are together next in Concord for our grandson's birthday. 

I saw a perfect picture for over the roll top desk at Goodwill.  I wonder if it will still be there at the store.  

Off in search of treasures.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Spring Ahead

The coffee guys just called wondering where Bobby was.   We were up, but just barely.  It seems to take a few weeks to adjust to the time change.

Yesterday we finished up the double bedroom upstairs (Shubael's room).  We made up the bed with an eggcrate mattress on top and tried it out.  It's very comfortable and I can see why Shubael loved the little room overlooking the ocean for miles around.  You can see the water while you are in bed. 

Brother Phil will be the first guest in the little room, so we may have to rename it "Phil's room". 

We moved the sink from the bathroom into Phil's room to make more room in the bathroom.  Now you can sit down without hitting your head on the sink. 

Today we'll start pulling together the Queen's bedroom.  (that's me).  The most interesting piece still has to be moved.  There's an old rolltop desk that I'd love to have in that room.  It goes back to 1890 or so and reminds me of my Dad and his hardware store in St. Stephen - Mallory Bros.  He had a big old rolltop desk in his office.

I'm still looking for a queen headboard but no biggie if I don't find one. 

I should take pictures of the "before" and "after".  In the meantime, I'll load on  a couple of the "after".

Friday, March 9, 2012

Surprise in the mail

Yesterday was an exciting day.  My wedding attire arrived in the mail. 

It was supposed to have been mailed on April 25th.  I was thrilled that it came early and even more excited when I opened the package.  It fits perfectly.  It's the type of outfit that can be easily taken in if needed.

The Internet is a wonderful thing.  I couldn't find anything even close to what I wanted in the stores. 

I rejoined Weight Watchers.  I'm a lifetime member.  My goal weight was 124, but that was forty years ago so I think that number will be adjusted.  I need a constant reminder not to put things in my mouth that have mega calories. 

Bobby is off for coffee with the guys.  He'll mail a birthday card to my sweet daughter who will be 43 next week.  What a joy she has been in my life.  She is so full of goodness that I swear she is an angel on earth. 

I am so blessed.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Safety First

Every old farm has a dug well.

I noticed a wooden cover out by the barn and asked Bobby if it was a well.  It is!

Bobby couldn't get to Brunswick fast enough to get a cement cover when I told him about a little girl who fell in a well and died. 

Anyone who buys an old property should assume that if there was a house there at one time, there's a dug well close to where the house was. 

The tulips are coming up, the lilac tree out front is budding and there are signs of spring everywhere you look.

We are making progress on the upstairs and have created two new lovely bedrooms.  We want to have lots of room for our children and grandchildren to visit. 

I talked to an old high school friend this week and she reminded me I said I'd never get married again.  I never expected to meet "my one true love" at this point in my life.  I'm happy to eat those words. 

We inquired about a marriage license yesterday.  Time is whizzing by and the day will be here before you know it.

We rented a tent and a porta potty for the big day.  We also put feelers out for a bartender and a couple of kitchen ladies. 

It's very hard to have a "low key" event.  It seems to have a life of its own and I am trying hard to keep control.

We're hoping for a very casual camping weekend. 


Sunday, March 4, 2012

One picture at a time

Here's Chris and Gabby. 

Snowstorm March 1st, St. David's Day

The day of the second snowstorm of the winter we got a wonderful surprise. 

I was busy in the kitchen cooking and the doorbell rang.  (we got a new one that we could hear - it's loud). 

There stood son Christopher and Gabby.  I was so shocked as it was snowing very hard.  They had a few days off, so they took off for Maine and stayed in Camden overnight.  They were on their way to Portland. 

I threw a couple of extra potatoes in the pot and we had a wonderful dinner and caught up on the family news.

Last night we had friends over to dinner and Bobby made his famous Seafood Cassarole.  We had all the right ingredients having made the trip to Bath for fresh scallops, crabmeat, haddock and for extra flavor, a can of chopped clams.  It was a wonderful evening and so nice to make new friends. 

The bedrooms at the old farm are taking shape and looking good.  We are off to look at a headboard in a neighbor's basement. 

The snow is almost gone after heavy rain.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Spring in Maine

Tyler and Julianna on her big day
The buds are starting to sprout on the lilac tree out front. 

It's only February but it's been an extremely mild winter.  Sure glad we didn't go to Florida, no need.

Bobby and I went to our granddaughter's fifth birthday party.  What a little doll.  It was wonderful to see all the family.

We are having a big camping weekend here at the farm in June.  Seems like a good time to tie the knot.  Hope people don't go nuts as we are in our seventies and want to keep it simple.  Is that possible?

We took a drive along the coast of Maine yesterday to deliver a stove we sold on Craigslist.  Sure wish I had taken my camera.  We saw some beautiful little fishing villages and had lunch in a cafe near a dance hall where Bobby danced the night away some sixty years ago.

Saw some old friends while we were in Concord.  Remember when we were in school and we used to sing "Make new friends, but keep the old, one is silver, the other gold."  Good thing to remember.


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Andover Pinewood Derby - Worth the trip

Our grandson Tyler did not disappoint. 

We made it just in time to witness the entire race and all the boys did a wonderful job preparing their race cars for the event. 

The Dads raced the sons in the end to add a little spice to the fun.

I saw some old friends and lots of family and Bobby made a big hit as I knew he would.  He really enjoyed seeing the kids and the race as it was his first "Pinewood Derby". 

Son Jon brought the car he made when he was a boy and there were lots of comments about the "flaming hand".  (It did look like a hand)

A pizza party followed and fun with the family.

We sure were tired when we got back to Concord.  I started in preparing six pairs of jeans for hemming.  It's been a long time since I did that much sewing at once, but I got it done the next day around 1:30 PM.

We visited son Chris and Gabby in Manchester, then made a quick trip back to Andover to deliver the pants.  Whew!

We're back in Maine for a few days to recouperate for the next party.  Julianna's birthday will be a joy and we've had a ball shopping and being indulging grandparents.

Had our new "used" truck painted and repaired and just got it back.  It looks great and I'm sure we'll get lots of use out of it.  The Champagnes seem to be always moving something. 

Some things never change.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Gator the Chinese Crest

Yesterday was catch up day.  I gave Gator a bath and a haircut.  Sewed him some new scarves out of an old shirt of Bobby's.  He looks spiffy. 

Dukie, the cat, didn't recognize his scent so proceeded to terrorize him for the rest of the day.  So much for Johnsons' baby shampoo. 

Today we're going to Marden's in Lewiston to check out the bargains.  There's a restaurant over there that Bobby wants us to try.  I'm game as long as I don't have to cook. 

My grandson's Pinewood Derby is this weekend, so we'll be there. I remember how much fun my kids had making the little race cars.  I kept them all and they have them on display.

Big football weekend so Bobby will be watching the game although I have no idea where.

Beautiful sunrise over Harpswell Sound.  We are blessed.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Trans Global Amnesia - Yes, it's Real

We are stuck in the house till the ice in the driveway thaws a little.  It's a good day for Yak Tracs on your boots to go out and feed the birds. 

Mr. Cardinal is patiently waiting in the tree outside the window.  The "flying rats" are hogging the bird feeder. 

Today is give the dog a bath day.  Might as well give him a haircut while I'm at it. 

I'm getting a little homesick for New Hampshire so maybe we'll take a trip in a couple of days. 

My son is going to Miami on business this month and I would love to see him before he goes.  He has a new dog - a lab/shephard mix from the shelter.  I wonder how that's working out with the three cats. 

Gator and Dukie the cat tolerate each other but Dukie is definitely "King of the Roost" and gives him a swat every so often just so he doesn't forget.

The poor lady who left her kids in the car and walked twelve miles is being crucified by the press.

I recognized the symptoms right away and I had the same thing a couple of Thanksgivings ago.  It's called Trans Global Amnesia and it's real.  I don't remember anything for about the same amount of time.  I talked to people on the phone and asked them about things that happened six years ago. 

I was just lucky I wasn't alone.  It usually doesn't happen again.  So far so good.

Let's not be so quick to judge. 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

February Snow

 
It's a beautiful morning here in Maine.  Mr. Cardinal is outside the bay window in the kitchen and is now at the bird feeder.  His beautiful red plummage is striking against the grey morning and white snow.  Mrs. Cardinal is never far behind but usually sits in the tree waiting.

My proof reader tells me I ocasionally have a typo for which I apologize.  I think too fast and type faster.  I guess years of medical transcription has a down side.

Today we have a free day.  Horrah!! 

The treadmill purchased from Uncle Henry's classified is working out well.  It's a lot more fun being inside looking out the three big windows at the water and watching the news than trudging through the snow and ice outside.

Bobby is ready to go to the store for his morning coffee meeting with the guys.  Wonder what they'll talk about this morning.  Probably Super Bowl Sunday. 

My grandson's Pinewood Derby is this Saturday.   Maybe we'll jump in the car and make a quick trip to Concord.  My boys always used to participate and I remember it being lots of fun.

February is always a fun month.  Valentine's day and Julianna's birthday spice it up a bit.  We will definitely plan something romantic for the 14th.  I have a new outfit for the occasion. 

The treadmill awaits.




Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Google+

The nose pickers have done it again.

I made the mistake of signing up for Google+ and now I have to run around the barn at leat four times, get on the treadmill and whistle Dixie before I can get into my blog.

Of course, I am really pissed off now so don't know how chipper I can be at 8:00 AM.

Cloe, the Siamese cat, is still with us.  She is awfully thin and is not eating much.  However, she's up in the big bay window in the kitchen looking at the birds and drinking some water. 

We have a bird beeder outside the window and it's wonderful watching the sparrows and cardinals.  Bobby calls the pigeons "flying rats".  A little sparrow froze on the ground the other day.  Wicked sad. 

Bobby has a doctor's appointment for a heart ultra-sound today.  It's a good thing we're retired as we seem to spent a lot of time with different doctor's appointments.

This is the last day of January and Amen to that.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Good to Go

Passed the Colonoscopy test yesterday. What a crappy test. Sure hope that's it for another few years.

I minded it more than the test I had nine years ago so they konked me out. Must be my age plus I was much thinner nine years ago.

Thought I get my little Singer Featherweight out today and tackle some hemming jobs I've been putting off.

The back living room at the farm is ideal for projects and has a TV and stereo in there to keep me company.

The snow has turned to freezing rain so I think we'll be staying home today. Bobby's going to the store for coffee, that's as far as we go. They have their gab session with all the guys.

Guess I'll think about what to have for breakfast. After yesterday, that's a real treat.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Purge Day

Tomorrow is Colonoscopy Day.

The good part of fasting for a day is that I'll lose five pounds. That will certainly give me inspiration.

It's a beautiful morning here at the Merriman Farm. It's been an extremely mild winter and no need to go south. I expect we might get walloped in March or April.

We are planning a big camping weekend for this summer with all the family. It's fun to always have a special event to look forward to.

We are still cleaning the second hand stove we bought from a Craigslist ad. It's more work than we thought, but the cost of a new stove outweighs the work.

February is coming right up and another trip to Concord. I'm a little homesick and can't wait to see my kids and grandkids.

You can take a cruise at an 80% discount. No thanks!

Monday, January 23, 2012

The Cove

It's twenty-seven degrees this morning, a veritable heatwave.

Our neighbors down at the Cove have all gone south for the winter. Bobby is the house checker. He discovered someone's furnace off this morning and the circulators running steady. He got it going again. It was still 46 in the house, but risky if you haven't drained the pipes.

Our latest adventure involved Craigslist. I saw a Jenn-Aire stove that has a gas cooktop and an electric/convection oven. The old Jenn-Aire in the house has seen better days but we didn't want to spend 2500 on a new one.

Anyway, off to Augusta yesterday and we came home with the stove. I just fit in the Outback so we didn't take the truck.

I have been cleaning the grates and so on since 3:00 PM yesterday afternoon. I have never seen so much grease in my life, but it will be clean when we have the gas man come.

We have lost power four times and it would be nice to be able to cook something and make coffee on the gas stove. I saved an old drip coffee pot from the Merrimans and I imagine it works just fine.

Bobby is off to his morning coffee meeting with the guys.

I'll tackle the grill part of the stove this morning. For those of you who wouldn't attempt a cleaning job as bad as this - the only thing that works is a window scraper. Just keep digging and the grease will come off.

Three days till the Colonoscopy. Sure will be glad to have that behind me.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Sunny Winter Morning

Life at the farm is soothing and relaxing. I don't feel the sress I used to feel when I was working. I don't miss those years. I guess that's one of the benefits of growing older.

Yesterday we went to town and had fun buying gifts for the grandkids. We had a nice lunch at the Topsham Fair Restaurant.

We made chili when we got home. I made a mistake and bought ground pork instead of ground turkey which I have been using instead of hamburg. I couldn't figure out what "that taste" was as I kept sampling the chili and adding more chili powder.

I would suggest using the ground turkey as it blends better and is a healthier choice that the beef.

We got the new "old truck" registered and only had to put a muffler on it to get it inspected. It will come in handy this spring when Kelley and Jeff start their new house. We can't do a lot of heavy work, but we can be goffers.

The sun is streaming in every window here at the old farm house as it has for many years. Bobby showed me a paper where two of the early Merrimans are buried. I hope they're happy that we're taking good care of the farm.

The graves are down over the hill by the spring.

Walter Merriman - son of Walter Merriman Sr.
Born March 8th, 1766
Died August 15, 1855 Age 88 years

Isabel Alexander Merriman
Born October 10, 1774
Died November 11, 1829 Age 55 years

Bobby repaired the stones last spring. They had broken into three pieces. I guess the cows were always breaking them and then heavy wind blew them over.

I look forward to spring when we can inspect the gravestones and maybe plant some flowers and spiff the area up a bit.

If these walls could talk.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Morning Snow at the Farm

It's snowwing pretty heavy outside and I don't mind it as much as the bitter cold.

Today we'll go to town and regiser the truck. It's inspected and ready to go. Only cost Bobby a muffler so he's glad it wasn't anything else.

I am a little squirrely after being home for a couple of days. We were supposed to go to a hockey game in Brunswick at the college tonight, but probably won't go because of the snow. We don't normally drive at night and definitely not in bad weather.

There was an article in the Sunday paper about a quilt shop in Lewiston. I'll have to check it out with the hopes that it will inspire me.

Time for the first cup of coffee.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Toyota Work Truck

Today isn't quite as cold as yesterday. The sunrise was beautiful as always and never disappoints.

Bobby, neighbor Al and I went to South Portland yesterday to look at a second hand truck. It's a guy thing.

Bobby ended up buying a 2000 Toyota Tundra for a great price. It needs a little work on the body, but it runs just fine and will be handy for yard work, trips to the dump and moving stuff. We're glad we had Al with us as it saved us an extra trip to Portland.

We grabbed the rest of the seafood casserole, a salad and rice and went to Al and Marilyn's for supper and cards. There's nothing like having a friend from my hometown. It's so familiar and feels like home. I've never played Queens before but it was lots of fun.

I downloaded the latest Google Earth this morning and find it amazing. The next thing will be peeking into windows.

Since it's January and not much to do, I guess I should think about starting my project upstairs redoing the bedroom. The wheels are clicking. There's lots of stuff to go through and get rid of.

When the weather's good we'll hop down to Concord for a few days to see the kids and the grandkids.

It's been a great winter so far and no reason to go to Florida. Some days were warmer here than in the south.

I'm making a to-do list. Focus Nan, focus!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Maine Seafood Casserole

This morning it's zero degrees. Needless to say - the dog didn't linger outside.

Bobby and I are having our first cup of coffee and checking our emails on this chilly morning. The pellet stove in the living room is keeping the temperature at 72 degrees.

I can see the birds at the bird feeder outside the bay window in the kitchen. You wonder how they survive in this cold weather. Bobby takes the left over cat food outside and feeds the birds. I don't know if this is a good thing or not, but they wait every morning for their treat of the day.

Yesterday we went to the seafood store in Bath. We bought haddock (flash frozen on the boat) - five pounds for twenty dollars. We also purchased two swordfish steaks, a package of rock crab claw meat and a pound of Maine shrimp to the tune of fifty bucks.

We had purchased local fresh scallops the day before from Ray's Vegetable Corner here in Harpswell. We had a few for supper Friday night and they were yummy.

Bobby made Seafood Casserole yesterday for dinner. Here's the recipe.

1/2 pound of haddock
1/2 pound of scallops
1 pound of rock crab claw meat
1 cup milk
1/2 cup cream - we used half and half and canned milk
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 teas. salt
Pepper - the recipe called for Cayenne pepper, but we didn't use it
Panco crumbs
Crushed up saltines
Melted butter on top
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese

Parboil haddock and scallops in a small amount of water for 6 to 8 minutes; allow fish to set in cooking liquid for 20 minutes after it is cooked. Cut fish into bit size pieces. Prepare a white sauce with butter, flour, salt, pepper, cream and milk. Use part of the liquid in which fish was parboiled with part of the milk for milk measurement. When sauce is thickened and smooth, add cooked fish; spoon into a buttered 2 quart casserole. Sprinkle with buttered crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Bake in a moderate oven, 350 degrees F., for 45 to 50 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

I have never tasted anything so delicious. I felt like a queen and would recommend this if you are having company for dinner. We have plenty left over for another feast today and for our neighbor down the road.

It's a good day to laze around the house and graze.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The Merriman Sea Captains

The attic is a marvel of history. Most of the valuable antiques have been sold, but there are papers that reveal a little bit about life in the mid-eighteenth century.

I found a little leather book that one of the Merriman sea captains must have used to record the produce they bought and sold on their many trips to other ports. The first date that appears says Portland, November 11th, 1861 and appears to be a delivery to a Boy's School.

There are two quite good pencil sketches on the inside cover of the book. They are side views of a man and of a lady - probaby the captain's wife. Maybe I can copy them to a larger sketch for framing.

There are other entries dated New York, August 26th, 1862. They mention the delivery of molasses and other goods. More to follow as I investigate the attic.

Today is a nice wintry day and we'll go to town for groceries. I have been stuck in the house for a few days and will be glad to get out.

The water looks so cold from the windows of this old house. Makes you glad you are warm and cozy next to the pellet stove.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Mulligan Stew

It's been the kind of day to stay home and cook. The heavy wet snow kept us from going to town.

We decided to make Mulligan Stew. We threw everything in a big pot in anticipation of the power going out.

I had fresh carrots, so I started cooking with just enough water to cover.

We thawed and browned some beef that looked a little chewy and cut that up small. Add the beef.

We only had sweet potatoes, so we used canned white potatoes. (if that's the Canadian spelling - no comments from the peanut gallery).

We had frozen peas and frozen turnip so we added those. Then we threw in some canned stewed tomatoes, and regular tomatoes. We decided a can of mushrooms was just the ticket.

For spicies, Bobby threw in Knorr vegetable bouillon, Worcestshire sauce, salt and pepper, Kikokthman sauce and the last of some ginger salad dressing from the frig.

I threw in the leftover bacon from breakfast for good measure.

It was really good with some rolls we found in the freezer and baked in the oven.

We sent brother-in-law Bill home with some kick-ass Mulligan Stew for he and Tracy.

It's 6:00 PM and we haven't lost power yet.

However, the wind is blowing like crazy, so anything can happen.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Falling in Love at 72

I guess the one word that sums it up is "Joy".

I decided to write an article called "Internet Dating in your Seventies". It was published in the Concord Monitor on August 21, 2011. It was the result of researching three sites, eHarmony, Senior People Meet and Match.com.

In the process of my research I wrote a short note to a nice looking guy from Maine. I kind of forgot about it as I had dropped the subscriptions to the dating sites since my article was published.

I kind of enjoyed getting the emails, so I decided to join Match.com for another month. I heard from the guy in Maine who had just joined.

The rest is history. We alternate between his beautiful farm on the coast of Maine and Concord, NH where my apartment is.

My son, daughter-in-law and grandkids came to visit us this week at my apartment in Concord. It was so good to see them and I can't believe how big they have gotten in the time I haven't seen them.

Now that the New Year is here, I have lots of goals. Eat healthier, more exercise - you know the drill. Bobby and I having a wonderful time and are looking forward to having my children and grandchildren visit this summer and going clamming down at the cove.

We wish everyone a healthy happy New Year.