Random Tuesday Thoughts – Old Wine, Grapes, Winemaking, Noisy Neighbors

I don’t know about you, but from where I’m sitting, this year has been flying by way too fast.  Labor Day has come and gone, marking the end of summer.  Sort of.  We have a couple of weeks before the official end of summer, but technically it’s over.  Of course Mother Nature hasn’t gotten the memo, what with the 90-plus degree weather she’s been inundating us with.  She was kind, however, and gave us some amazing weather over the weekend. Thank you, Mother Nature!  She must have been taking her own holiday, because she’s back at it with the 90’s for the next couple of days.

We had an unexpected house guest for the weekend, so I didn’t get the things done I had planned on getting done…like racking and bottling wine, and picking the apples and grapes to make more wine and jelly with.  Our tree is loaded with apples:

And even though quite a lot of them have fallen off with the birds and squirrels dancing in the branches, there are plenty to use for wine and jelly.  Just have to figure out how to pick the ones way up high – there might be some tree climbing in my future.

One of my web design clients has a ton of grape vines in his yard, and he offered to give me what the bees and birds hadn’t gotten to.  So we made a trip to Gettysburg yesterday and brought back this:

This tub holds Niagra grapes – excellent wine making grapes:

Along with those, he gave me two Styrofoam coolers with two other types of grapes – I have my work cut out for me this morning to clean them, separate them, destem them and flip a coin on whether I’ll be turning them all into wine, or making some regular grape jelly out of them.

Not only did he give me three different varieties of grapes to work with, he also pulled some really old dusty bottles of wine out of his basement for me since he and his wife aren’t big wine drinkers:

Some of these bottles are so old they’re from before I was drinking age!  I checked online, and while wines never really go ‘bad’ as long as the cork is still intact, there could be some oxidation and loss of body and flavor.  As long as no air or oxygen has entered the bottles (if any of the corks have started to break down they’ll allow air into the bottle) then they won’t be vinegar.  Yet.  The only way to tell if it’s turned into bad sherry is to taste it – so when I’m feeling adventurous I’ll do just that and let you know the results.  He and his wife also stopped by on Saturday and dropped off some homemade wine that his dad made a long time ago:

Also very old – so we’ll see how those have held up over the years.  I’ll keep you posted.  Meanwhile, his dad is no longer making his own wine, so when they go to New Jersey for a visit this weekend, he’ll be bringing back any of the wine making equipment his dad no longer uses – isn’t that sweet?  So now more than ever I’m going to need a separate outbuilding for my winemaking so I’m not hauling heavy carboys up and down the basement steps to do the racking and bottling in the kitchen.  I’m just sayin’.

We had a meeting with the school Psychologist on Friday to go over the results of Princess Nagger’s Gifted Testing.  She passed with flying colors, so she’ll be starting with the Gifted Group this week.  What’s nice is she won’t have to go to school earlier or stay later – they just replace certain homework with work more her ‘level’, like 4th grade reading instead of 2nd grade reading, and 3rd or 4th grade math.  She’ll also get to do some fun projects – Thursday they start a session on Archaeology – right up her ally.   Or at least close enough to her love of dinosaurs and plans to be a Paleontologist when she gets older.  Their first ‘assignment’ they’ll be learning the proper way to dig – by digging a chocolate chip out of a cookie.  It sounds like with the ‘extra’ learning she’ll be doing, she’ll also be having fun, which to me is important.  She still needs to be a kid!

The neighbor kid has been annoying us to no end – riding a dirt bike and/or four wheeler up and down the property line for hoursLoud hours.  We think it’s time to put up a privacy fence along that side, just to eliminate the annoyance.  Not to mention he doesn’t pay attention to where he’s riding – Rolex got through the invisible fence once and got hit by the bike.  Luckily he wasn’t hurt aside from some minor bleeding because he bit his tongue – it could have been way worse.  And yesterday, the kid almost clocked my hubby while he was out trying to cut the grass along that edge of the property – scared the living daylights out of the hubby.

Speaking of loud noises coming from the neighbors, this upcoming weekend they have their annual Dyno Days happening – the neighbor rents a Dynamometer and all his hot rod car buddies converge and run dyno tests on their loud cars.  They drive their car onto the Dynamometer and rev the engines (tires are spinning on the thing) which makes for a very long, loud day.  I won’t be sorry that I’ll end up missing it this year since I’ll be spending the day at Bloggy Bootcamp.  Hubby said he’d be happy to record the noise so I won’t feel left out.  So considerate.

Tomorrow is my 2-year blogiversary – I know, it doesn’t seem like it’s been that long, and because of my bloggy-hiatus and trying to get caught back up in the blogosphere, it’s almost as if I’m starting over.  Last year I had a giveaway for my blogiversary, so I think I’ll have to do a repeat performance again this year.  Stop by tomorrow and see what I have up my sleeve!

That pretty much takes care of the randomness within my brain for this week – if you have scrambled brains like I do, you should consider stopping by to see Keely and deal with it.  Go forth and be Random!


This entry was posted in Random Tuesday Thoughts, Wine, Wine Making, Winemaking and tagged , , by Stacy (the Random Cool Chick). Bookmark the permalink.

About Stacy (the Random Cool Chick)

After 20+ years in the Corporate World and years of infertility, Princess Nagger made her miraculous appearance and I chose to become a SAHM and WAHM - I love every minute of it. We added Little Dude through adoption, adding a whole new dimension to our family. We have an eclectic mix of pets: dogs, cats, birds and fish. I love to cook and try new techniques to turn ordinary into extraordinary. Crafty by nature, I take on a lot of unique projects and enjoy seeing the end result. My favorite, of course, is making my own wine out of fruits and grapes. Experiments with water currently underway. I blog about the joys of parenting, family, friends, life, love and anything else that strikes my fancy. I do enjoy doing reviews and giveaways for products I use, believe in and can stand behind.
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28 thoughts on “Random Tuesday Thoughts – Old Wine, Grapes, Winemaking, Noisy Neighbors

  1. Happy blogiversary!

    That noise has to be super annoying. I’m glad I don’t live around people like that.

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  4. My kids were in the gifted program also except that the schools didn’t know what to do with them. It was in the 90s and the schools hadn’t geared up for kids that needed to be given higher level stuff. We worked it out pretty much the same way.

    Sweet find on the wine and wine making stuff. Can’t wait to see what you do with it.

  5. That’s awesome that PN is in the Gifted program! Your neighbors sound beyond annoying. Have fun making (and drinking) the wine!

  6. Well, personally I think that’s kinda cool! My grandpa use to make wine in the basement, but the old fashion way. My grandparents were from Palermo Sicily, and once a year their house use to smell like old dirty socks to me, but that was the wine fermenting. Great neighbor you got there. Wine making is really quite an art actually. Thanks for sharing.

  7. I will not whine about this post! it’s full of wine!! poor Rolex! A fence would be a good idea, because next time? it could be princess N out there on her hotwheel car!

  8. Good fences make good neighbors, and it sounds like you need a good fence before your neighbors drive you nuts.
    Good luck with the wine making, my mom just got done bottling her rhubarb wine and this year’s batch is wonderful.

  9. Oh, so cool about PN and the Gifted class! As if it was in any doubt at all.

    And that is SO neat about being gifted all the wine, grapes and equipment!

    And your neighbors are morons.

  10. That is a huge amount of grapes. I bet you will have an amazing time with them. Can you talk to your neighbors about the 4-wheeler? Maybe he could avoid the property line? A few years ago, my neighborhood had a huge issue with ATVs and the police ended up being brought into it. Good luck with it.

  11. Wow! You make your own wine? That’s awesome! The lady who cleans our stairwell brought us 2 bottles of apple wine last year that her husband made. It was delicious!
    Maybe the old wine could make all future Dyno Days more tolerable? Just a thought.

  12. Happy blogoversary!

    Your neighbors sound terrible!! I thought I had bad neighbors, but man, I’m so glad I don’t live where you live! Don’t you have noise ordinances in your town or anything like that??

  13. That is quite a haul all the lovely looking grapes and for me since I don’t drink alcohol, the grape jelly sounds pretty darn good. Oh, apple too. I usually have some apple butter handy but I have to hide it in the frig or hubby will devour it.

  14. Good for PN. Smart girls should be encouraged all they can.

    Uhm, does the kid belong to the Dyno people? Is he the DynoMite? They sound (literally) like a royal pain in the rear.

  15. I can’t wait to hear if you have good wine or just sour grapes! Great news about PN and the gifted class! In my experience with Son and his therapies, they have many ways to make learning fun so I am sure she will have fun! Happy Blogiversary!

  16. That was nice of your neighbor to give you all those grapes and wines. It will keep you quite busy. I’m glad PN had great test results too. That’s terrific!

  17. There is nothing I hate more than loud, annoying neighbors. Blech! The last neighbor that gave me troubles, got a middle of the night face to face confrontation to all their noise.

  18. Hey Stacy!

    Just looking at those bottles makes me very thirsty. And to have to listen to that dirt bike??? I’d have an account at a liquor store and send the neighbor the bill ;->

    Looking forward to your blogiversary!

  19. The noise would drive me batty, still not as annoying as some of the parties my neighbors from across the street have. They rented a huge stereo system last time and provided a drunken emcee to narrate all of the party activities, well in to the wee hours. Don’t get me wrong, I slept through it, but my husband didn’t. 😉

  20. Wow, you won the jackpot on the grapes and wine!!! Enjoy…………
    I know that I would surely put up a fence, that sounds annoying.
    Way to go Princess Nagger!