All is fine one day, all not the next. This is what it looks like this morning out the back door - that is not fog, it is smoke, that little white dot is the sun. We are safe here at our house at the moment but others not so lucky, many we know. It's not just the outlying areas & mountains burning, it's towns here in SW Oregon - neighborhoods and businesses burnt to the ground, we don't have any clear numbers on any of it yet as the fires are still raging. Roads are closed heading in and out of our region - only one major route out at this point. My cousin has evacuated and is staying with us. He is lucky that there is family to stay with, there are so many others not so lucky. Hotel rooms are filled for hundreds of miles as the fires just aren't here in SW Oregon, they're all up and down the western part of the state. Here locally there are two fairgrounds to check in at, the one here in Grants Pass is then sending evacuees to churches in the area. I passed a big church yesterday and there were sun shelters set up all over the parking lot, people sleeping on cots overnight. Covid sure has complicated taking care of those displaced. I was teary eyed driving home worrying about our region making it through this and then how it will recover. Fire fighting resources are spread thin, one of the big fires here is not even getting air support at this point because it's just not available. Please send positive thoughts to the entire west coast that is dealing with this destruction.
When we first moved to Oregon we designed and built a house that is now in one of the fire's paths - it is at the top of the ridge next to our old place, this morning the fire is even closer, it is in level 3 evacuation orders. We lived there for 11 years and even though it's been 17 years since we've lived in that house it saddens me to think of it burning to the ground. It was a beautiful cedar home on an incredible 6 acres.
As if it weren't bad enough last night I got an email via the neighborhood email 'tree' - some guys started a fire at the railroad tracks just blocks from us. It was put out quickly, not sure the status of those that started it, was it an accident or was it on purpose, hopefully they were caught so we can sleep at night. If a fire starts right around there we may not make it out safely.
I am not being very productive. It was hard to focus before the fires, covid worry had finally worn me down. So, I've done some 'putting away' - from the apple tree I've been freezing bags of apple pie filling, I've been drying apples. I did dry grapes but that created a huge mess and it took 3 days of the dehydrator running for what ended up being a small amount of raisins. So, I went online looking for other things to do with grapes. I found this grape muffin
recipe - it is so good. I've made 3 batches so far to freeze..........and eat. Our grapes are a tiny little variety which works well, if using the big grapes bought in the grocery store it might be best to cut them in half.
Misty seems unaffected by the fire danger so close by - she just goes about her normal routine........be crazy and then collapse........
.....yep, life can be good too.........
Stay safe everyone!