We had a fantastic time last night at Fox Valley Church's annual Chili Cook-off and Hoedown. Pots and pots of chili awesomeness, and many were able to work it off with square dancing (unfortunately, we couldn't dance due to my gout and Penny's foot fracture).
We didn't win first prize in the chili cook-off... but it was first in our hearts (and we enjoyed tasting many different types of chili... over 27 pots worth). =)
Getting ready for winter.
Penny, Travis and I slowly worked on getting the house ready for winter. One upside is that we still have our Montgomery Wards riding lawnmower (it is over 25 years old, but it is still running). It has hydrostatic drive (essentially an automatic transmission), 18 hp, a 46" mower deck, & a grass catcher chute/bag system. It might be old, but it saves us a whole lot of effort. So as long as my left foot and left hand aren't enduring a gout attack, I can quickly cover a lot of ground. As it is autumn and we have 4 very large trees in our east side plus back yard, we have a LOT of leaves. As our mower has a mulching blade also, we are able to break down the leaves into small bits (and Travis helps me by emptying the grass catcher making life easier for me). Penny helped Travis by showing him how to rake the yard and pile up the leaves (Travis then gathered the leaves and put them in a pop up leaf bag and we discarded the leaves / grass / mulched leaves in our compost area behind our fence). Travis helped Penny tremendously (as Penny might have a fractured foot). So the pictures below show our house with the Summer stuff put away (and the autumn stuff having been put up including scarecrows). =)