Friday, June 29, 2012

Another hot day...

  The temps hit 102 again today, but the good news is the AC worked all day.  Yesterday it was 106 and it quit right around 2 o'clock.  The outside line on the compressor froze up and it wouldn't blow cold air. By morning it had all defrosted and it made it through the whole day. Hallelujah!  Right now at almost midnight, it is still 80 degrees...and feels like a sauna out there.


 The Irishman left for Wisconsin today, and a family reunion. He called me around 5:30 to let me know he'd arrived safe and sound, and that he hit a storm around Bloomington and it was only 70 degrees there.  lol He wanted to know how it was here and did I call Todd and was everything okay ?  (Todd is our HVAC guy).  We chatted a bit and I went on with my day.

  Was out watering the garden early, around 7.  By 10:30 or so I had picked green beans and was getting ready to go back out and pick blackberries.  It was already getting hot. I got most of the berries picked and will finish the rest tomorrow when my niece arrives. She's dying to pick blackberries, lol.  We have done this every year since she was about 2. It's our THING.  lol


  Got news that a woman I know died last night. She had cervical cancer which had spread to her entire abdominal cavity. By the time she was diagnosed and they tried to treat her, it was too late. They had given her 3 weeks to a month to live. It made me sad, as she has a 6 year old daughter, as well as 2 other daughters and a son. who are grown.  I am grateful her suffering is over, but it seems like a tragic waste of a young life. She was a very good hearted woman and she will be sorely missed. .She was 45.

  Then I got news that another friend of mine's dad died today. His wife is devastated and my friend and her family are all gathering around her to try to help her through this. I know they're very worried about her. 

  2 deaths in one day are a little too much for me.  RIP, Christine and John...


  I am tired. Had a nice evening/supper with my son. He grilled and I fixed potatoes and corn on the cob. We watched some goofy tv and now I am whipped and ready for bed. I had the Irishman put our old window AC unit in the bedroom just in case there was no air today...figured if all else failed, I could just stay in bed all day with a book. lol  SO it's really nice and cool in there...I am going to take my book and read a minute before I pass out. I have all my chores done--dishes, chickens, cats and dogs, litter boxes-- so there's nothing stopping me. I'll get up in the morning and do it all over again.


Thursday, June 28, 2012

Gonna be a Thirsty Thursday...

 Thirsty, because it's supposed to hit 106 out there today. So, I was up at 7 AM and out watering by 8. Everything still was pretty good from yesterdays soaking, but this scorcher spell is supposed to last over 4 days in a row. SO, I think I'll water every morning, just to try to stay a step ahead.  I did pick a HUGE batch of lettuces this morning, some for my neighbors and some for us, because if anything succumbs to this heat wave, it will be the lettuce. 

  I am hanging out laundry and the second load is in the spin right now. The third load will wait until himself gets home, because it's his work clothes. Probably wont' do them until tomorrow morning, since tonight is our discussion group out at La Vista Ecological Learning Center.

  Nancy at Cozy Thyme Cottage has asked about how often I water since we use the straw mulch.  sigh...I wish I could give you a definitive answer, Nancy.  lol  When we first moved here, 7 years ago, we didn't have city water. We had a cistern and we were VERY water conscious and conservative.  This wasn't too hard for us, as we had lived in California for years and were used to conserving water. Of course this went a little farther than that, but still.  We mulched the beds because it holds water in and prevents so much evaporation, plus it shelters the roots and composts into the raised beds.  The first 5 years we were here, we had two options, haul water in the truck from town, OR haul water up from the pond in buckets.  So, we became very pragmatic about the survival of our garden.  We depended on rain and we tried to plant more drought hardy species. Once a week or so, we would haul water up from the pond in buckets and water the things that were looking the worst.  Because we plant in raised beds, there isn't as much water loss either. Because we compost so heavily, we have wonderful dirt in our beds. All these things lend themselves well to better water efficiency in the ground.

 The past 2 years, we have had city water out here.  Last year, however, I still didn't have an outside spigot for my hose. This year I do.  (Thank Goodness!!)

  Add to this the craziness of the weather. And the length of the growing season these days.

  So far this year, I have been watering about every 3 days.  We aren't getting any rain at all. Usually we get a good soaking rain about once a week or week and a half.  The hot weather here started way early and is hotter than normal, even for here. Because it's going to be SO hot the next week, I am probably going to water almost every day. Early mornings or late nights.  I figure I'll just have to keep an eye on the plants and go from there.

  Most mornings I go out and let the chickens out and sashay past the beds and stop and stick my finger down in the dirt. If it goes up to my second knuckle and is still dry, I will water. It's a fine line sometimes between too much water and not enough water.

  Does that answer your question, Nancy?  (LOL--I didn't think so!!!!)

  BTW, there were some lean years around here when we couldn't afford to go buy straw bales and we used dead leaves--works just as well. We always use some leaves anyway...they compost really nicely.

  Back in from hanging that last load out...oh lordy--it's cookin' out there. The other load I hung out is almost dry.  The chickens are starting to pant, and I showered them some with the hose. They don't like it, but it cools them off .  Guess I'll do a little in-house cleaning; moved some things around out on the deck and swept a little and am soaked. lol.  I'll take a shower once all the dirty work is done. Probably a cold shower. lol  The A/C has been running nonstop, so I turned it up to 78 (from 76) and brought some fans out. Hopefully it will make it through this sweltering mess. I probably need to get out the little cannister and vacuum the vents on that door...I do it regularly because of all the dust out here.

  Not sure what I'll make for supper...has to be something he can eat in the car while I drive. Tempeh burritos, maybe?  Something light, that's for sure. hmmm...wonder if I still have those egg roll wrappers, and if they're any good? That's a thought... I just had an egg on a piece of toast, because I realized I'd gotten so busy out there I forgot to eat breakfast. oops.

  Good day for an afternoon of reading. The big drapes are drawn and the house is a little dark, and cool. Maybe I'll make a bowl of popcorn...

  Stay cool. y'all....temps this high are nothing to fool around with. And it looks like it's hot all over.....(except maybe at DJan's house.  LOL)


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

WWW of Gardens....

(I know you've been waiting with wild abandon...)
 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Click all pics to Biggify!!~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Here's a bit of an overview shot from the back porch... This is about half or a little less, of the gardens. And what's with that bright light??  It's only 10:30 at picture taking time, but already getting hot.  The wooden box in front is a sort of a cold frame that the Irishman built, but all summer becomes a catch-all for hoes, rakes, shovels and such. There are glass windows (re-purposed) that fit the top of it.

 Chard (called perpetual spinach) and carrots..and lots of straw mulch to hold water and shelter the roots from the heat.

My beautiful lettuce patch...still going strong (I should have picked some today before now...)

Onions...all nestled in their little bed...

Big Beautiful Butternut Squash--there are now tiny little squashes showing themselves.

 BUTTERBEANS !!!!  (lol--I just love saying that word)...and they are slowly starting to flower.

Basil, hanging out in the 'maters...

Tomato Jungle

Kennebecs, Irish Cobblers, and Red Pontiacs...'taters, baby!!

Aren't these gorgeous?  It's my plot of garlic chives, flowering.  And I popped a bit of a flower into my mouth, and OMG!!  It's one of the sweetest mildest garlic tastes I have ever experienced. The stems are long and flat, unlike other chives which have a round stem...I'm putting some onto tonight's salad....

Sweet potatoes...Georgia Jets

anise hyssop, parsley, rosemary...

Green beans...Blue Lake Bush beans. Flowering madly and I'm picking beans almost every day.

A Plethora of Peppers !!!! Red, Green, Yellow bells...and Jalapenos!

Snow peas and Green Beans...with a side of potatoes! 

 Time for a little break from all those vegetables.  Here are a couple of shots of the hens and rooster...
Aren't they just adorable ??  Rocco the rooster is learning to crow like a real man these days...

And here's Frank (that's St Francis to you, but we are family...) watching over Honeysuckle Hill.

Some of the deck flower can see that I haven't yet found the time and energy simultaneously to get busy and get the house siding mold cleaned off...arrgghhhh...

Lilies everywhere!

Pretties..petunias, ivy, geraniums...

More pretties...vincas, dianthus, herbs and all...

A little garden fairey, for good measure...

Volunteer cucumber on the outside edge of the quinoa bed.

Quinoa experiment in progress.

Miss LilyKat...resting in the shade, under the canoe rack and canoe.


  And there it is...Wednesdays Wonderful World of gardens.  You can see that it's keeping me busy/. The Japanese Beetles have launched their attack on my edamame, and I am launching right back this evening after it cools down some. I have a batch of dish soap and onion and garlic skins, just waiting to be sprayed on things. 

  And now I shall have a little lunch and say a little prayer for rain, though I know none is coming, it can't hurt to ask. I shall venture out in a bit and try to do a little weeding in the flower beds. I have a whole list of projects, but I don't even want to think about them in this heat. lol

  And as always, the living room carpets and furniture are full of clumps of white dog hair. Goes without saying. I didn't vacuum yesterday...or did I ??  sigh....It sure doesn't look like it.  I'm waiting to do laundry until tomorrow, so I can have the last of the Irishman's stuff done before he leaves.

  Have a grand Wednesday...I'm off to make another blackberry doobie, and photograph it better this time, so I can put it on Dragon Womans Kitchen blog. So much to


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

It's Tuesday.

Plain and simple.
The view from my garage door down the driveway to the road. Must be standing behind the car, lol.

  Yes, gentle readers, it's Tuesday. And I am in here stalling. I should be out mowing and finishing that up. But I'm not in the mood just yet.  I've just finished some breakfast and the critters are all fed and watered and loved up.  And I'm still sitting here, telling myself that as soon as I finish this coffee, THEN I'll go. My stomach is a tad upset, and I thought it was from coffee and not eating, so I ate. Still not right, but I'm sure that once I get off my derriere and move, it will be better.  Right???

  I'm all achy and limpy from the mowing I did yesterday.  It's par for the course.  If I wasn't willing to get all achy and limpy, I wouldn't be doing anything at all ever. And I'm just not going to roll over and play dead because things make me hurt. It's a fact of my life. My body is busted up and I'm old and stuff hurts and so what?  In a minute, I'll take some good old fashioned aspirin and be on my way. It's just the way it is. And I'm a real stubborn ass sometimes and that's just the way I roll. They told me I might never walk again.  Bet me. Guess I showed them.  lol

  I was looking at this picture this morning and thinking about the long road home. About how my life has been so exciting sometimes and so common at other times, and about how that's probably how lives are, for the most part. Sometimes it feels like I have lived many different lives all rolled up into one existence, and I wonder if anybody else ever feels like that.  Some parts of my life seem almost surreal to me now, as I wander off into old age, almost like they happened to somebody else.  Thinking about the journey, the cracks and crevices, the mountaintops and the blessings.  Interesting thoughts on a cool-ish Tuesday morning, and not sure where they're coming from.

 The Irishman is leaving on Friday morning for the family reunion in Wisconsin. He'll be gone for 4 days.  It'll be a nice break for both of us.  :)  I just got a call reminding me that I am a featured speaker tonight in Alton. Bloody hell--I had forgotten all about it.  (oops). Guess I'd really better get busy

  OK--yard work--here I come. Hope everyone has a good Tuesday....


Monday, June 25, 2012

Monday Madness

  Rose of Sharon flower. Before the Japanese Beetles got them all.

  That's the madness part of this Monday. The JB are invading...they are all over the edamame plants and the Rose of Sharon bushes so far. Any minute they'll be invading the blackberries and then who knows??  I have noticed that they seem to like pole beans more than bush beans, so the green beans might be safe. But will they attack the butterbeans ??  OH NO !!!!!  Stay tuned.

  Here's the only thing I know to do:  take a plastic bag and a long handled spoon,  go out to the heaviest infestation you can find, and spoon those bastards into the bag and then give them to the chickens.  They love them !!  I just put the bag up to the branch or stem and swipe at 'em til they fall in the bag.  I can't spray anything for them. There is some kind of expensive ground treatment you can buy and apply the year before and it apparently kills all the grubs  before they can do that magic thing they do.  I don't know if that would really help out here...our whole road is full of fields sprayed with all kinds of uber-chemicals I'm sure...and I'm betting that's part of the problem.


 Been a long-ish busy day and I'm pretty beat. Been trying to go to bed for about an hour, lol.  I got up and tended the critters and then ate some granola and got busy out back watering the garden.  That took about an hour and a half, thoroughly watering things so I can only do it every few days.  Then I picked almost a gallon of green beans and another quart of snow peas. I took those in the house and rested up a bit...bagged them and took some over to my neighbor. Came back home and started mowing the front yard. It took me about 2 and a half hours with breaks, but I finally got it done.  Tomorrow I will tackle the back.


  Still no rain around here.  Yikes.  Dry as a bone. On a bright note, the okra is going likes hot dry weather. I have about 10-12 plants...I freeze some of it for soups and stuff, but I pickle a lot of it. I love that stuff and so does all my extended family. Everybody asks for a jar of it.  I found a recipe to pickle snow pea pods today too, and I am going to do a couple of small jars of that.  The peppers are starting to flower and grow sturdy.  The quinoa is about 2 ft high. Everything looks really good. I have tomatoes the size of baseballs. The chard and 2 lettuces are going strong. The kale is finally all finished and I pulled the last of the scraggles to feed to the chickens.  They love it.  In fact, the first year that I planted kale, I planted it just for them.  LOL  Now it's for us too and we love it. I'll be starting canning in a week or two, I'm betting...maybe sooner.  Thinking I'd better get a few projects finished up, because once it starts it eats my days up...


  I'm teaching a tomato canning workshop in early August out at the La Vista Ecological Learning Center. Working on a handout/recipe book to give out. I should have had it finished long ago, but I am such a procrastinator!  Lucky for me, I work well under deadline pressure.  lol  My life just gets so busy sometimes it gets really hard to fit everything in...


  Well, thinking I need to head for bed. We're having a bit of a cool down around these parts...only got to 85 today, 10 degrees cooler than yesterday. The tomorrow is supposed to be only 82 and back up on Wednesday until it scorches us with 100+ temps on the weekend.  Oy vey... I'll be staying close to home those days, you can be sure...

 But I should be able to get a lot done tomorrow, and I want to get some paint and maybe touch up my tool shed and chicken coop in the next week or so. I have a visitor coming form Florida...and I am so excited!!

  Until then--stay cool, stay dry, and laugh every chance you get!


Sunday, June 24, 2012

Blackberry Summer

(Wasn't that a book by Margaret Meade?? No wait....Blackberry Winter. (It's a miracle my feeble brain could even come up with this...) lol

  We started picking blackberries here on Honeysuckle Hill this far-- some breakfast berries, one Blackberry Doobie (Thanks Wild Magnolia !!) and 4 or 5 quarts in the freezer. And lots of scratches and thorns and weed rashes on the ankles. It's just part of the package...the berries this year are huge and sweet and abundant. Some years, if it gets too hot and too dry too soon, you get small seedy berries that aren't good for much. These are all wild blackberries, so we're at the mercy of Mother Nature (which we always are anyway, if you think about it). They all come on so quickly and you spend a couple of weeks picking madly and trying to beat the birds to them. And the Japanese beetles, who have quite a fondness for them as well. But there's nothing on earth like popping a fresh off the vine sweet blackberry in your mouth. We are blessed to have so many brambles on 3 sides of our property.

One of the peach trees got so top heavy with fruit that it broke the branch...right where it should have been pruned last year, the Irishman says. lol  Problem was , we had one really cold snap last winter and that was it. Apparently we missed it. Anyway, the apple tree is absolutely covered with apples and the other peach tree is loaded too. This is going to be a good year for fruit preservation. Berries, apples, peaches...yum.


  Saturday we went to a solstice celebration out at the La Vista Ecological Learning Center.  It was awesome...2 astronomers came with their equipment--scopes and special lenses and filters-- and we got to look at the sun. It was pretty damn cool. We turned the sun staff and had a scavenger nature hunt and ate watermelon and drank lemonade. We each introduced ourselves by name,  told where we grew up and then shared our favorite childhood summer memory. Mine was sitting on a picnic table in our backyard, with a bunch of neighbor kids (who were mostly my cousins) and eating watermelon seeds and seeing who could spit the seeds the farthest. It was really fun and interesting...esp. listening to the city kids who got to spend some time in summer on grandparents or aunts and uncles farms. I made a new friend and we had a really delightful time.


  Saturday night after we got home,. I made supper of leftovers and then found a recipe for a dessert called a Blackberry Doobie. Sandra at Wild Magnolia had mentioned it to me, and I hadn't heard of it. I asked--Do you have a recipe?? and Do I need an oven??  lol  I looked up the recipe for it, and it turns out it is a sweet fruit soup with buttermilk sweet dumplings in it. It's an old southern recipe.  I did a couple of things wrong, but it was still one of the best blackberry desserts I have ever had. I can't wait to make it again...I'm going to put the recipe on Dragon Woman's Kitchen...


  This morning we went into town for a meeting and then stopped on the way home and bought 4 bales of straw from a local farmer. His wife came out and jerked those bales out of the shed like nobody's business. I was impressed. The Irishman leaned over to me on the way out and said--see? I told you she was a big old farm gal.  She was tall and big...and had a baby under one arm and reached in there with her left and pulled those bales down.  lol  Farm women are freaking AWESOME.  And that's all I'm saying on the subject. lol


  Well, this weekend is running out, and I am tired and sore. Sore from picking blackberries on the hillside. Sore from bending over and picking the first batch of green beans. (YAY).  Sore from picking 2 quarts of snow peas in 3 days. From bending over the lettuce beds, picking picking picking. lol I cleaned the chicken coop this afternoon and we tried integrating the chickens again with the pullets...I eventually went back in and separated them again,. as the older Australorp is bullying them all and they wouldn't come out of the coop into the run.  The older Buff Orpington, on the other hand, goes right up in the coop with them and has no problem at all. Hopefully when the new flock gets a little older and bigger, they won't be so intimidated by her.  It's so interesting to watch the social behavior of of the many reasons I love having them.  I cleaned and refilled all the water bowls too, as we were forecast a high today of 97. I think it made it to 95.  Hot hot hot.


  We have some family stuff going on right now...not with us but it's a sad time. Please hold us in your prayers...I know it will all work out exactly the way it is supposed to. Still, it's a hard journey and hard times. But it's the storms we weather that make us who we are, and the relationships in our lives that teach us about ourselves and about the things that are truly important in the world.

  As long as we're learning...everything is going to be alright.


Friday, June 22, 2012

Freakey Friday

 Oy's been a week, I'll tell ya...

  On Tuesday, I kept the Irishman's truck to run errands. Did all that, and came home and did some housework. In the process of burning a bunch of paper stuff (feed sacks, etc) I came through the house, picked up a bunch of junk mail paper and took it out and dumped it into the burn barrel. Unbeknownst to me, the truck key was apparently caught up in the mess and got burned to death.

  Now, I don't know if you've ever done anything this stupid...I wasn't paying attention, plain and simple.  The problem here, is that the key (naturally) is not just a has a computer chip inside it.  When we bought the truck, they gave us 2 keys....only one had the chip. The other key will lock and unlock the doors and even fit the ignition and turn it on...but the truck will not start.  As you can imagine, I became hysterical. Not right at took me 2 hours of searching and trying to retrace my steps, and then sifting through the ashes to figure out that it was burned up. Problem was...I had to go pick himself up from work. My son has my car. I am screwed.

  I called my neighbors and they generously loaned me their truck, after talking me off the ledge. She recommended I call the dealership they bought their vehicles from to find about having the key remade. I went back home, made a call, and was told that to have a key made, it would be 300.00 and I had to have my truck towed there so they could program the key to the vehicle. I nearly lost my lunch.

  After much wailing and gnashing of teeth and nearly having a nervous breakdown, I got out the phone book and called a different dealership (north of here, in the town where the Irishman works). They were very kind, and sympathetic. They said that unfortunately, those keys are very expensive. I said, yes, I know.  They said they would have to make 2 keys. I said , yes, we need to have 2 anyway so this never happens again... They said I would have to have the truck towed there , yada, yada, yada.  And then they quoted me a price that was HALF what the other dealership said.  Still a big chunk of change (for us) but...doable.  I hadn't looked at my online bank numbers in a couple of weeks, but I was pretty sure I had about 600 dollars at least in there. When I checked, it was only 200.  OMG...I nearly fainted.

  I called the insurance guy, and asked about the towing on my roadside assistance...would they tow me from my driveway to the dealership?? And he said yes they would, that my policy would cover the first hundred dollars of the tow, and I would have to pay the rest out of my pocket. I said I understood.

 To make a long story short, the next day (Wednesday)  I got the tow, got the keys, put some gas in the truck and came home. And got a call from the tow truck company saying that I owed them twelve dollars over the hundred the insurance company paid and I could put it in the mail. I finished off the day with a whopping balance of about 24.00 left in my account. Luckily, this week was payday.

  Sigh....I hate this financial insecurity. My guts were in spite of my losing it, everything worked out okay, except that I have lost 400.00 that I can't account for.


  Thursday I spent at my neighbors house so she could go to a birthday lunch. I whipped up a batch of granola and took it with me to toast it in her oven.  :)  I didn't get home until about 4, with my batch of granola and some plant starts she gave me. I made a batch of granola bars, did a little laundry and made supper. I couldn't decide what to fix, so settled on a soba noodles with peanut sauce.  I went out to the garden, picked about 2 quarts of snow peas, some fresh basil, a few green onions and a handful of spinach. I had a couple of carrots left,  and turned it into a marvelous meal.


  Today I cleaned house while the Irishman watered the gardens (still no rain)...I vacuumed, mopped, dusted, cleaned the glass panels on the chandelier (10 of them--they come off, and get so nasty looking, I have to wash them in hot soapy water and dry them with a paper towel so there are no streaks). Then I went out to the garden while he took Molly to the reservoir to run...I picked a container full of chard and spinach, and another one full of the 2 lettuces. I picked another small mess of snow peas. After returning home, he went over to help the neighbors put in a small split rail fence. Then when he came back, we took buckets out and started picking blackberries. Got about 3/4 of a gallon. Pretty good for the first pick of the year....

 Afterwards, we cleaned up and headed for Edwardsville to pick up some groceries and to eat lunch at Crazy Wraps and Bowls.  We needed some yogurt and some organic stuff--red onions, cucumbers, carrots. It was a nice lunch (13.00) and a nice trip to the health food store. Then we came home and vegged out. lol


  About 7 we were starting to think we should eat something, but because we had such a late lunch, we weren't too hungry, so I made another big bowl of the minty watermelon and peach salad. And that's what we had, with multigrain crackers. Then we watched Foyle's war on PBS and had a little popcorn.

And now the day is over and I need sleep.  We are going to a summer solstice celebration  tomorrow afternoon and other wise take it easy. We cooled down a little today, but tomorrow and Sunday it's supposed to be really hot again.

  On a garden note, I will be picking green beans any day now.  WooHoo!!!

  On an Annie note--goodnight. It is time to put these old bones to bed!


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tickle me Tuesday...

  This is maybe one of the best salads I've made in a long time. 

 This might be a little better view...

  It's a minty peach and watermelon salad. Oh. My. God.  This recipe is heading for Dragon Womans Kitchen.

  The wrap was really good too. I originally intended to make a Mediterannean wrap, but wound up making a teriyaki tempeh wrap.  I had some leftover pinto beans, some leftover rice...I cooked the tempeh strips in olive oil and then simmered them in teriyaki sauce. I laid that on top of some julienned green onions from the garden, topped it with some leftover sliced black olives and a few leaves of lettuce from the garden. Wrapped it all up in a sun-dried tomato tortilla and ate like kings. YUM!


  It's a scorcher out there.  95 already at noon.  I have been one busy beaver this morning...took the Irishman to work and kept his truck. Stopped at the Rural King and picked up 160 pounds of critter feed and came back home. Unloaded the truck, fed the critters, spent almost an hour watering the gardens and  flower pots. Then I went around front and hosed down the concrete (dog puke from yesterdays heat) and my rocking chairs and the shutters and stuff.  Watered the 2 pots hanging on the porch too.  Came back in the house to cool off for a bit and started some laundry.  I have 3 loads hung out to dry and I think that is all I'm gonna do. 2 of the loads are bedding from the spare room --full of baby chick dust!!   And one load of whites.  Not really that much of anything else, since I just did laundry on Thursday. 

  Then I headed back out to the garden and picked about 2 quarts of snow peas! And a handful of radishes. And some chard. I still have enough lettuce in the fridge, so I left it alone. That doers finish off the radishes though, so we need to get some more of those darling seeds in the ground.  I am thinking I will just do a big salad for supper. It's too hot to cook.


  The doglets are all in the house. Most of the cats too. Can't say as I blame them. I don't want to go out again either.  But I do need to go pick up some straw. WHICH I WILL NOT UNLOAD BY MYSELF. (Just sayin'...)  The RK had straw for sale, but they wanted 7 dollars a bale for it. No, thank you.  I am already balking at having to pay that means I need to make a run into town. Actually, just outside of town--the other side, naturally. But it's either that or get it from the nursery, and I'd really rather buy from a local farmer.


  Think I'll make myself a peanut butter sandwich for lunch...just wish I had some of that good milk from MOTS...I really need milk with my peanut butter....but don't drink enough milk to keep it on hasnd.  The Irishman drinks rice milk, which I'm not crazy about. It's okay for using on cereal, but I can't drink a glass of it. lol

    Ok--I need to eat.  Then I might just take a nap, since I've been up since 5. I have to pick the Irishman up at 5:30, and in between now and then, vacuum, get some straw and ??? something.  I can't remember what.   I'm sure it will come to me...



  TTFN....keep smiling, it helps!!


Monday, June 18, 2012

Monday Morning running wild...

The bee balm is blooming...I just love this stuff. The flowers are so lacy and delicate looking...


  It's been an interesting weekend. I haven't posted since Thursday because life just got ahold of me and wouldn't let go. lol  I wanted to get in here last night, but lost my internet connection again. Don't know what that's about, but it was really annoying.  I did everything I knew how to get back online and nothing worked, so it wasn't on my end. So, I shut 'er down and read a book. Until about 10:30 PM, then I went to sleep. It's back on this morning. (Duh...I guess that is obvious). lol

 Thursday night I went to a womens meeting, and got to see the new baby of one of our members...a beautiful little boy.  6 weeks old. wow...I can almost remember when my Tom was that little. lol It was a good time and got to see my dearest friend who was there unexpectedly too, so it was awesome all the way around.

  Friday I got to watch one of my "girls" walk across the stage and get her diploma. I was so proud of wasn't easy , but she persevered and made the dream a reality.  Afterwards we all went out for a celebratory pizza party, the Irishman and I, another 2 friends, her dad, husband and 2 daughters. Got home a little late (for us), and had a really good time.

  Saturday I went to a morning meeting that I attend and got my 22 year coin. It was a really touching morning there, as several of my sponslings attended and had nice things to say, we had a newcomer, and a young man said such nice things that it made this old woman cry.  I was feeling especially blessed. 

  Yesterday the Irishman went to an Assembly. He rode with another guy, but I had to be up at 4 AM to take him to meet the guy in town. I went to bed early enough on Saturday night, so it wasn't too bad.  Until later in the day, lol.  My son came over and did a bunch of things for me...replaced my kitchen light (the old one went kaput and wouldn't l put out any light anymore, when you could get it to actually come on.). He tried to fix my oven and couldn't. He took down some big tree limbs over my back deck that were in dire need of removal. He did some heavy duty weeding out around my flower beds on the rock wall and pulled those big weeds out of the middle of my rose of sharon.  (Did I say he's tall??  lol  I couldn't get to them.)  I made him and myself a nice breakfast and we had a good day together.  Then he trotted off to see his dad for Fathers Day.

  I had another meeting that I had to go to to give one of my girls her 5 year coin. Couldn't bake a cake, so had to settle for buying a batch of cupcakes at the local bakery. That was 4:30 til 6 and then I was finally on my way home....

  The Irishman was here when I got here. And grumpy.  And so was I.  And so naturally, we had an argument and now we seem to be having a passive aggressive battle of wills. He left for work this morning a half hour early, didn't eat breakfast, and didn't clean up the mess the little dog left in the office. Because I didn't shut the door last night. On purpose. I almost slept in the spare room (Which--oh yeah--I cleaned on Friday too--finally) and then decided that would be cutting off my nose to spite my face, as the bed is nice, but not as comfortable as my own bed. He said something to me in the midst of this argument that was very hurtful.  Because he was rattling on about the business end of the assembly he attended and I said I didn't really care. He stormed off into the other room and came back and viciously said some stuff. after I apologized for being rude. sigh....and I was immediately pissed and the rest of the evening pretty much went to hell.  On a brighter note, one of the things I do when I'm angry is take it out physically, so I took the broom outside and got all 3 decks swept off, something that has been on my list for the past 3 days, but it was too hot to do when I had time.

  We rarely fight or argue, so it's really uncomfortable when it happens. And I am so stubborn and so is he.  I don't know how long this will go on, but not long, I'm sure.  I can't take it, it's not worth it. I have done a good job so far at not shooting off my mouth and coming back at him with the thousand things that I keep thinking.  :)


  I am getting ready to sit with my neighbor today, while his 65 year old wife goes zip-lineing .  (I'm not kidding!!)  She's my role model.  lol  I have to be there in an hour...I've been out, the chickens are taken care of and I need to eat and get dressed. It will be a long day....but I've got a good book and the weather might be nice.  We've been having a string of hot days again, but finally got a really good rainstorm Saturday's 75 right now at 7 AM...supposed to get up to 97 today.  YIKES.  Maybe I better go out and put a little extra water in my potted plants....

  Have a grand day...a new start, a new week.  


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Thursday's Wednesdays World of Gardens...

(and in case you're not confused enough....)
 Who's THIS guy in the yarrow bed?????   lol   Kind of adorable, isn't he?

^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^* I went out this morning around 10 and took some pictures. I just can't help myself...Then I got busy and got the front yard mowed...and that wore me out. I came in and had water and lunch and feel a little better now. Of course, before I mowed I had to go on poop patrol and shovel up the excrement the dogs leave all around the front porch...that's a half hour job at least.  Then the next hour and a half was spent mowing the front yard...the Irishman started mowing on Saturday and stopped when he ran out of gas, planning to finish the next day. Which, of course, was when he got sick. And naturally, he started in the back yard instead of the front, really thinking (I hope) that he was going to mow the entire thing. So the back got finished and the front not started...sigh....never mind.... are the garden pictures.   :)  (Click to biggify!!)

 The deck flowers and herbs are hanging in there just fine.

Daylilies are everywhere and gorgeous this year!

 This beautiful one was given to me by my sister-in-law the first or second year we were here. LOVE the color!

Butterbeans traveling towards heaven!

Quinoa!!!!  Well--quinoa with a few weeds....hopefully get that taken care of this

 The salad bed...spinach, chard, lettuces, green onion, radishes, lemon grass, carrots--yum.

Butternut squash looking very healthy and robust.

    'Maters, baby !!!!!  Lots of flowers and quite a few tiny green tomatoes showing up now..
   The Edamame bed....

Taters !

  Snow Peas!!

Blue Lake Bush Beans (green beans)...I'll be canning in about 3 weeks...

Duelling eggplants!

Georgia Jets sweet potatoes...looking much better, but jury's still out...

 A lovely volunteer zucchini, come up in the pepper bed.

Okra--have about 12 plants

 Assorted bell peppers--looking good !

Holy Toledo!! Is that a ripening blackberry ??  Why yes, yes it is!! 

As you can see...we are going to have a bumper crop of berries this year.  They almost surround our house, the invasive little sweethearts....

And finally, back to the salad bed..a close up of the Black seeded simpson and the bronze romaine lettuces.

  Hope you enjoyed this  as much as I, I still have a couple of things to accomplish today, so I'd better get on it....

 Happy Thursday !!!!!