Sunday, June 16, 2024


Late posting:

Oklahoma spawned a large storm and sent it south though us Tuesday morning. Lots of flooding rain for hours and around 0200 killed the power for 10K folks in the neighborhood. I figured the power would be out for 12 hours plus, but the boys who work with electricity had us back on at 0800. First world problem though for us was that coffee is always ready at 0400. Like clock work!!

The old school days percolator was pulled from the back of the kitchen cabinet, filled with 8 cups of water and 4 scoops of coffee. Set on the outside cooking burner and watched over. I cannot remember the last decade I used this tool. 

Of course, I was raised in a household where the morning coffee was made this way. Dad had his stove top percolater routine down like we do, setting the timer on our electric pot. But a percolating pot has to be watched. How long to let it "cook" determines the quality (or not) of the morning coffee. In a perfect world, somewhere around 7 minutes on a low heat boil (perk). 

The coffee bubbles to the top, drains back down through the basket over and over till the coffee is done. "Done" is all up to the person making the coffee. I test poured a few times into a white cup to determine the coffee "doneness" by how it poured, color, thickness and gut level feeling. 

I thought that I had let the coffee perk too long. Looked too deep in color.  But come to find out this was the perfect cup of coffee and far out performed my electric timer skill set. 

A small spoon of 100% cocoa powder was mixed well with some hot black coffee. One sweetener. Stirred and stirred. Then more black coffee and a good shot of cream and stirred and stirred. 

Too hot to tell at first. Too hot to even sip. Patience. After a few minutes, I learned the true meaning of "robust." And it was just that. Had body. It was exactly what a cup of coffee should be. Second cup w/o chocolate and it too was robust with deep flavor. 

My wife was skeptical. A dead dark morning with only flash lights to start the day. I told her when she got up that I had made old school coffee and for her go ahead and make her cup of coffee that same way she always made it. I could hear the hesitation in her voice and I think she was giving in to my opinion that it was a great cup of morning coffee. 

If you camp, hike or play with cooking anything outside, you know how to use a percolator coffee pot heated over an open flame or using outdoor cook station. But if the only coffee you make comes from an electric switch flipped coffee maker on the kitchen counter, you may consider learning how to use a percolator coffee pot. Add a new skill set to your bucket of tools.



....  forecast for the week ahead.............and of this morning, 6/16/24, I am back to try to get back on posting schedule. So, yep the warmth is upon us here in east Texas and you will be hearing about the Texas heat again in the weeks ahead. "It's a thang!!!"


Old Friend

The first CRKT knife I ever purchased. Found at a secondhand store in NH. I have been a fan ever since. Used, abused and am most impressed with the sharp edge these knives hold. A few minutes on a stone and good to go. I have abused the shaprening procedure on this knife and it still is foregiving in the sharpening process. EOTW knife for sure.



Last weekend was a whole chicken pellet grilling weekend. Grill cleaned and fired up. Chicken prepped. I had been looking forward to this cook. I so enjoy weekend grilling.

The bride held the kitchen door open for me and I moved to the grill in the carport. Opened the grill lid and grabbed the chicken and it just happened. Chicken slipped towards me, pan tilted and down my leg the chicken went leaving a seasoning mess from my knee to my foot. It came to rest next to a tool box and  on the cement carport floor. 

I was verbally upset and it is a very good thing we live blocks away from neighbors. And there it sat, mostly void of any seasoning at all of that was on my clothes. All my work and prepping sitting still on the cement garage floor. There is no 5 second rule here. The checken was lost. For so many reasons. 

My wife knew I was upset,  what to do?

Not giving in to the run-away chicken, I set off for the market, picked up chicken pieces, seasoned them and on the grill they went. An hour lost but dinner would still be on time. Besides, grilling chicken pieces was on my bucket list of meats to grill some weekend ahead. 

Come to find out, smoking/cooking/grilling checken pieces works wonderfully, no flavor lost and soooooooooo much easier than a whole or half chicken cook. Lessons learned.



Nine AM, Earl Campbell Kielbasa and a small chuck roast on the grill. Kielbasa for lunch and the chuck roast was a test. I have read good things about smoking beef chuck roasts. 

Finished the chuck roast at noon and put on a small prime rib for dinner. The chuck roast was covered in foil and went in the kitchen oven to finish the cook. The roast will be tested later this week. 

The wood pellet grill is one of the best grills, if not the best grill, I have ever owned. The photo of the prime rib speaks for intself. Each time I grill, I get a little bit better. 

Hey, no prime rib on the car port cement floor!! 



Harbor Freight, a hundred bucks. I have been shopping for a few months, but have not been able to make a decision on a small drill press. Finally decided on this one and am happy with the tool. Added a larger and heavier base and a larger table to drill on. A few more hacks in the works, but for now have a small portable drill press for drill pressing jobs. I do like the small LED  adjustable light. 

What Bears Do

Neighbor friend in New Hampshire sent this photo from outside her kitchen window this morning. She watched the bear come through the fence and get onto the bird feeder. 

No matter how hard I tried, I could never bear-proof our bird feeders while we lived there. The harder I worked to protect the feeder, the worse the damage from a determined bear. The bear always won.



First rigging attempt for visual reference only. Will this work? Can I get the lines tight enough? How do I do that? Need to learn how to make Bowsies? Questioning mast mounting method. Need backstay? Probably!

I think I need to clean off my work bench and re-group. More research. Get away from it for a day or two.



The past few weeks have been storms, power outages and now the onset of Texas heat. Temperatures in the 90s now. Maybe some rain Monday and Tuesday. But triple digits are on their way.

I am numb these days with the challenging times we live in. Nuclear war porn, Putin this, Zelensky that, clown world and maybe one of our aircraft carriers on the run due to damage from an attack. Not really sure as who/what can you believe anymore? If real news is shared publicly, it is suspect. It is a story one day and disappears the next.

Draft coming for 18-26 year olds. How is thing going to play out? A story worth keeping up to date on. If Vietnam tore this nation apart, what will this draft do? 

In the meantime. One day at a time. Family and friends do not talk of these things. Maybe that is best. And with most all of my posts these days, I know that I just do not know.

Thanks for the visit this week. I will try to get back on the Sunday posting schedule. 

Make this coming week a good week!




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