Thursday, June 5, 2014

Enjoying a Screened Porch

We have been able to spend a little time on the screened porch.

My herbs are on this porch, love the way they smell when I water them!

There was a set of dishes at the thrift store that practically begged to come home with me. There was no choice, I had to bring them home and put them in the hutch.

The same day, I found this at a discount store. I loved what it said, that is what we want to happen to new guests. They may enter as strangers, but we want them to leave as friends!
We have entertained a couple of times on this porch now. It is a great place to relax, enjoy the company of friends and of course a large glass of iced tea!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Monday Musing - Sweet Iced Tea

Iced Tea and summer go hand in hand. It is difficult to imagine one without the other, in fact it just may be some type of crime. That probably is not true up north, but in the south, it is just downright disrespectful and wrong. I am truly concerned about the character of a person that does not drink iced tea. Perhaps their disposition and character could be greatly improved by this beverage.

If you have rocking chairs on your porch, then you need a glass of iced tea to go with them, and a few moments to stop and enjoy that cool glass of deliciousness. A pitcher of this heavenly drink is made daily at our house. The problem is this, my husband claims that someone apparently sneaks into our house in the summer and drinks all of our tea. It obviously is not him drinking all of the tea. Whoever this person is, they take the last brownie, cookie, slice of cake, and get the very last scoop of ice cream too. I am only guessing, but the tea bandit probably looks exactly like my husband.

We have a swing on our front porch, and that gentle swinging motion causes iced tea to taste even better. It is the same way with a rocking chair. If a cool breeze is blowing while you are doing either, the tea is more refreshing. A carbonated drink just does not quench your thirst in the same way.

Sweet tea is often called the house wine of the south because it is served everywhere. It is hard to find a home where iced tea is not served. Iced tea is served at our house in Mason jars. It is my personal belief that this affects the taste of the tea. Each cook has their own method of making tea; the time for steeping varies as does the choice of sweetener, and each person’s tea tastes different. Whatever the preferred method, each cook knows how the tea should taste.

As for Kevin and me, we will enjoy our iced deliciousness on the front porch in the swing. Blow the horn if you see us out there. I would offer you a glass but those tea bandits have probably drank it all if my husband is around. So if you drop by, just make sure you brought your own tea.

Monday, May 26, 2014

An Update

My brother came home from the hospital! We are grateful that we still have him and thrilled that he was able to come home!
Todd had one of those heart attacks that few people are able to recover from. He is very lucky and very blessed! Thank you for your prayers and kind comments! Please know that you are appreciated and I would ask that you keep Todd in your prayers, he still has a long road ahead. Thanks again!

Monday, May 19, 2014

A Monday Musing - Life is Fragile

The Monday Musings usually appear in our local paper before appearing here. This week is different, this column has not appeared in the paper.
Last week, my 44 year old brother had a massive heart attack. He is the health nut in the family. His recovery has been slow, but a slow recovery is better than no recovery!
This makes me think about so many things. What if it were my husband? How can this happen to someone so healthy and strong? What are my brother's chances of having another one? What are the chances that my youngest brother could suffer one? What about the children, what are their chances? The list of questions seems endless. The answers are more difficult. Life is short and precious. We never know when it will be taken away.
Last week, as we rushed out of town to be with family, I called my daughter and asked if she wanted us to pick her up. We were almost involved in a wreck, as we turned onto her street, but fortunately my husband was able to avoid a collision. We narrowly missed a deadly accident. Life is indeed precious!
The past week has been spent dealing with family and friends wanting updates. It has been overwhelming, rarely leaving a moment to myself. The end of the day finds me exhausted and not wanting to talk to anymore. Some have gotten angry because they feel that I haven't given them daily updates as quickly as they would have liked, but these same people lack the understanding that I am not able to sit for 2 hours at a time to discuss the "what if"s of the situation. They don't mean harm to me, they are concerned for my brother, but fail to realize the emotional toll this takes on the rest of the family. The concern of others for my brother has been appreciated, but difficult for us to deal with. We are all exhausted physically and emotionally. Keeping everyone updated has been a task that I have failed. There simply has not been enough of me to go around. I don't apologize for that.
The situation has been compounded by the fact that I haven't been able to be there for 5 days now. He is my brother and I can't be there, that is more difficult than I can express. He is however recovering and for that I am grateful. His life was spared. When he got up last Tuesday morning, he probably had no idea that he would suffer a massive heart attack and end up in I.C.U. His life almost ended. He will come to realize how close he came to not being here with us anymore. He will learn that life is fragile and precious.
I haven't been able to visit you like I wanted, but I will get there! I have missed my friends in blogland!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Updated Spice Cabinet

A few weeks ago I posted about the cabinet below. That post is here. I asked for suggestions and loved what you  had to say!
The cabinet was painted white and the upper and lower doors removed. Baskets were placed on the bottom shelves and filled with dish towels.

The knobs were temporarily replaced. I am looking for some great vintage glass knobs.

Still undecided as to what should be placed on the shelves, but for now a few vintage creamers were placed on the shelves.

Taking pictures gives you the opportunity to see things that you may not have noticed before. I am not calling names, but apparently someone or something with 4 legs perhaps, felt the need to investigate what was on the lower shelves as I turned my back for a few moments.
This is more than likely the guilty party. She was sitting in a chair at the table. I wondered why she was acting so innocent.
Her name is Tallulah Bell, but thinking we should call her Mischievous Little Stinker.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day 2014

We have had the opportunity to watch some of our animals become Mothers. Ironically, the animals here view motherhood as a privilege. They are just animals, but have knowledge that too many humans lack. My favorite animal mother was Hoppy.

Hoppy was a crippled chick that wanted to live the best chicken life that she could. Hoppy went broody one hot July. She took eggs from the other hens nest and set on them. There was only 1 egg that belonged to her in that small clutch. Hoppy set joyfully; it was her goal to become a Mother. She watched the other hens lay their eggs only to walk away from them.

Hoppy set on her small clutch of 5 eggs faithfully, despite the oppressive heat. We did our best to keep her as cool as possible and fresh cool water was kept nearby for her. One hot August day I heard peeping coming from the chicken pen. A Dominicker chick hat hatched, this was obviously not Hoppy’s egg.

It did not matter to Hoppy, she was a mother now, and her dream had finally come true. Hoppy was so proud of her chick, it would be the only one to hatch. Hoppy cared for her baby, and you could see the pride in her eyes. She was a Mother now and she had an opportunity to give the love and guidance that a chick would need to live a successful chicken life.

The baby chick grew quickly. Hoppy knew that her job had not ended as soon as the chick hatched. There was still work to be done and she would finish her job as Mother. The weather began to grow cool and one cool evening, I found the small Hoppy sitting close to her almost grown and rather large baby chick with a wing stretched over him to keep him warm. Hoppy remained a devoted and dedicated Mother for the rest of her life. Her role may have changed as her chick grew, but she had adapted to each change.

We can learn from Hoppy’s example. Hoppy knew that she didn’t need her egg to be a real Mother. She did her best and took care of her chick. Happy Mother’s Day to each Mother that worked hard and cared for their little ones, you knew the work and dedication required to raise young ones even if they did not belong to you.          

Monday, May 5, 2014

Monday Musing - Early Mother's Day

Sunday is Mother’s Day, and Mother’s deserve a special day. it is hard work raising a kid! My daughter was a lot of fun to raise, even though I think that she had a lot of nerve to grow up when I was still having fun with her. There were things that we didn’t get to do, we ran out of time. The truth is that Motherhood still had trying and difficult moments, even for a Mama that was blessed with a great kid like mine.

Once again I am reminded that God knew what He was doing. Our Creator gives us our offspring as babies. Sweet, innocent, precious, and cuddly babies, you can’t help but love them. If God started parents out with teenagers as offspring, then the human race would have ceased to exist. He had to start us out with babies, so we would get attached to them, that way we would be less likely to try and return them.

Imagine hearing a loud thud outside as the stork delivered your brand new teenager, complete with that teen attitude. The first thing your brand new teen would do is complain about the trip and the ignorant stork that brought said teen to your door. Clearly the teen wanted to go to a different more upbeat home. A cool and happening kind of place where there aren’t any dumb rules. We would all throw rocks at that stork, knock him out of the sky, catch him and demand that he take that difficult teen back to the cabbage patch that it came from. Can you imagine how strong a stork’s beak would have to be in order to carry new born teenagers?

Yes, God knew what he was doing in giving us babies instead of teens. God had a plan, and knew how that plan would be carried out. Motherhood must have played a part in His plan.

Sunday is the day that we say thanks to our Mothers, birth and adopted, for the job that they did for us. We are each imperfect and flawed, but most of us attempt to do the best job that we can do in raising our babies. Thanks Mama for doing your job as a mother. It must have been real hard work raising my brothers! Happy Mother’s Day to my Mama!

Saturday, May 3, 2014

A Painted Hutch

Spring is always a busy time of year for us. There are so many things to do and not enough time to get them all done it seems.
The hutch has been painted and I couldn't wait to put something on it, so I used some melamine dishes that I bought last year for now.
The color makes me happy!

I liked it so much, that I painted a table and couple of chairs to match. Then I decided to use a bench with these chairs and gave it a coat of paint too.

The green made me so happy, that I painted the rocking chairs too.

Then I painted a bench that my husband made and realized that I needed a table for the seating area. The barn held a treasure for me, it was that box below. It had belonged to Daddy and what he used it for, I don't know. The inside smells like cotton picker grease, so he must have used it for something.
The box is gray and it will not get painted. The only thing I plan to change will be to put some feet under it and raise it off of the floor. There is still work left to do here, the decorating hasn't begun yet! It was on the list for today, along with mulching the front flower beds and grass cutting.

I have another piece to share, for some reason it did not occur to me to take a before picture. I was so excited that I just jumped in and started painting! This piece was a thrift store find and was priced well. The desk was sturdy, just dated and in need of some love.

It was painted with an off white paint and the drawers painted a soft blue, stained and waxed. It is now respectable again. It isn't an antique or a piece of fine furniture, but it serves it purpose and has been updated. The 1980's won't be calling us wanting the desk back now maybe, because I needed a place for the computer! Perhaps one day I will remember to always take a before shot for the blog.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Boopsie Roses

My daughter and I call this The Boopsie Rose. It does have another name, which I can't recall. The edges of this rose are a soft pink which fade to a soft yellow. The rose is like Boopsie, different colors.

We call it The Boopsie Rose because it is planted beside Boopsie's grave. Boopsie was a few days short of being 18 when we lost her. She had a good life and made us laugh many, many times. We planted this rose to remind us of her and when it blooms we can't help but smile.

How did Boopsie get a name like that? When Katie was 4 years old, we got her a kitten. She was so excited! We offered her lots of cute names and she rejected each one. Her daddy was teasing her and he said "well we will just call him Harry Trueman". My daughter squealed with delight and his name was Hairy Trueman. Sadly Trueman made his way to the highway. We decided to get her another kitten.
I wanted to surprise her when I picked her up from school with the kitten. Since this female kitten followed Hairy Trueman, we called her Bess. Katie gave her the nick name of Boopsie. She answered to either. Sometimes Katie just called her "Boops", she didn't mind and would love on Katie no matter what she would have chosen to call her. Katie declared that Bess was her "sister" since she was an only child. The two grew up together and Bess was truly a member of our family.
Our beloved pets can't stay with us forever, but this rose bush is a sweet reminder of the good times we had with Boopsie. We never fail to smile when the roses appear.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Monday Musing - Mini Peep

Wednesday morning, I heard a peep coming from the incubator. Excitedly I ran to see the new chick! It was one of Little Peep’s eggs. The chick is covered in a yellow fur, the feathers will come later. This new chick was trying to stand up. It is amazing to watch them learn the things they will need to know in their lifetimes.

We were a bit excited because this is Little Peep’s chick, then we wondered. How much like Little Peep will this chick become? Will this chick need to be rescued from possibly life ending situations? Will this chick stop and stare off into space? Did we do the right thing by placing Little Peep’s eggs in the incubator? Will this chick grow to be as gentle as Little Peep? Time will answer these questions.

The news was shared with Little Peep that morning. She looked at me, trying to understand my words. Little Peep turned her head sideways a bit and just then a bird flew by. She watched the bird in the tree, but then she heard a buzzing sound, followed by the antics of a curious cat. Attempts to regain her attention were futile. Little Peep was unconcerned about the idea of motherhood, nor does she care what we name this Mini Peep. Little Peep can’t pay attention to anything long enough to process information.  Something always interrupts her train of thought. She did not share my excitement.

Ruby Tuesday was excited, but she didn’t know what she was excited about. She knew that something happened and her person was happy about it. It must be good and there are probably some special goat cookies involved. Gus the goose didn’t care, he only wants to keep Kevin away from me and enjoy the time spent guarding me from the evil cats or any other creatures do not meet his approval. The other chickens don’t care either. The cats were unconcerned as well. The happy event was ignored.

Watching the tired and newly hatched chick sleep I wondered what lay ahead and hoped that this Mini Peep would not have as many accidents as Little Peep. We will find out soon enough. Mini Peep rests now, gathering the strength needed for a chick life, for now Mini Peep is content to dream the dreams that baby chicks dream. I sure hope this isn’t a rooster.


Thursday, April 24, 2014

What Would You Do With This?

Last July, I came clean and admitted that I took part in the "country" decorating of the 80's. You can read about it here. I had a corner shelf that I painted white and the inside was painted a soft yellow. We thought that we didn't want painted furniture then, everything had to be stained wood.
There were some things that I held onto for one reason or another. This piece belonged to a friend of mine and I always admired it. She gave it to me about 15 years ago. V called it a spice cabinet. It has been upstairs for some time now, then I thought that I should give it a second look. My husband brought it downstairs last night.
The piece looks dated, but I still like it. Maybe it just needs an update? I love it except for the heart cut out in the bottom section. What were we thinking then?

Opinions please. What would you do with it? Give it a coat of paint? What color would you choose? What would you do with the heart cut out? I would like to give this well made piece a new life. It will be in my kitchen. The walls are a soft yellow and the trim is white. My kitchen cabinets are white also. We live in an old farmhouse and I have tried to keep with that theme throughout the house.
Tell me what would you do with this piece. How would you give it a new life? I can't decide what to do with it.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Monday Musing - Blast from the Past, Clover

Last week kept me busy and I did not have a column for the paper this past week, so I am sharing an older column today. Clover was with us then, sadly we lost her that summer. The heat was too much and we couldn't get her cooled down. She was the first goat we had and she had a larger than life personality! I have missed her terribly and before Clover came along I did not understand how attached you could become to a goat. Clover taught me many things, but she taught me that goats are awesome! She refused to get married and have kids, but her nephew Emmett is a father. Maybe one day we will get one of his kids. Emmett was an orphan and Clover's twin sister was his mother. We know that no goat can fill the very large hoof prints that Clover left, but this would be as close as we could get to having a bit of Clover here with us. Hope that you enjoy this blast from the past.

Clover and I share many discussions, these conversations are often one sided. Clover is agreeable as long as her special goat cookies are involved. Mostly she doesn’t care what the conversation is about, she just loves the attention. If Clover feels that an answer is in order, then she will rub against me for a positive response. The negative responses are always crystal clear, a snort, turning and walking away, or banging her head against the gate, the most emphatic way of voicing her disapproval.

My gentle, mischievous, and smart goat always knows exactly what she wants and attempts to help me understand goat language. My boys are older now, and the possibility of keeping one boy for Clover has been an idea that we tossed around. Each boy was carried to the gate, Clover sniffed his face, stomped her foot and banged her head against the gate in disapproval. Guessing that she means no way if that happening.

There has been a previous attempt in securing Clover a husband. Bill E. Goat attempted to persuade Clover to take his hoof in marriage, but Clover refused. Bill shouted sweet goat nothings to Clover, she ignored him. He called to her through the night. Clover refused to look his way. The final attempt to begin the courtship ended with Bill standing behind me trembling, and an adamant Clover stomping her foot. Poor Bill E. Goat left in disgrace. Bill trembles when he hears that name now. Professional help will be required to restore his damaged ego.

Clover is a goat woman that knows what she wants. Freedom of choice is demanded by this head strong female. Neither of the boys will be acceptable. Clover has made her choice. A conversation with Clover’s previous owner revealed the wisdom in Clover’s decision. These sweet little orphaned goat boys were born to Clover’s sister. Clover can’t marry her nephews! Clover was right again.

Today, Easter Sunday, one of my little boys will go to a new home. He will go to a loving home, and will be a child’s pet. He will be a gift from Grandparents to a very special little granddaughter. His twin brother will remain with us for a while longer. Time will reveal the rest of this story.

Friday, April 18, 2014

One Last Look

There are fewer flowers on the Bridal Wreath Bush. There will be no new blooms until next year. Thought I would give you one last look, until next year.
Wishing you each a lovely Easter Weekend!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Sneak A Peek

Spring has sprung all over the place here, allergies are working overtime this week! My desire is to spend the entire day outside, my allergies remind me that is not the best idea!
Welcome to another Random 5, linking to Nancy over at A Rural Journal. This is one of my favorite link parties, it is so fun to visit as well as link up! Here are my Random 5 for the week.
1. The Hutch was painted this week! Woo Hoo!

2. The color is called Celery Bunch. It needs a couple of touch ups and the hardware must be put on. I loved the hutch when I saw it, but when I painted it, I really did love it!

3. Now that the weather is warming, I haven't baked as much, but I did make a brownie pie this week. So easy and so yummy, it was topped with fresh whipped caramel cream. All calories were removed before the pie was made. Hey, it's my story and I can believe it if I want to!

4. The Bridal Wreath Bush has been so pretty this year. It is a favorite old fashioned bush of many. A number of people comment on it and will tell a story about a childhood memory and this type of bush.

5. My daughter was on the radio this morning! It was a station in a neighboring town WQXZ 103.9. Yes, I am that Mom, the one that saves newspaper clippings, listens to her on the radio and tapes her TV interviews when I can. She told the gentleman that her Mom was listening and I got a "hey Mom/Melanie" from them! Katie was talking about a concert she had attended last night and promoting her part in the Keep America Beautiful. See I told you I am that Mom, I could go on for many paragraphs about this! I do like their morning show and plan to listen everyday now.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Weekend Finds

Sometimes you manage to find yourself in the right place at the right time and find that certain something you have wanted for the right price. Such was the case this weekend.
My side porch needed a hutch, or so I thought, but I think it needs a bed swing too. I had looked hoping to find one this past winter with no luck. Saturday I found one, it is need of a little love, the price was right and I thought it was perfect!

I am thinking a lovely shade of green, what do you think?

We had a new addition to the flock this morning. I heard chirping coming from the incubator and this little one had just arrived! This is Little Peep's chick! There are 3 other eggs, but no noise or pips yet.
We are expected to have nasty weather today, I hear the thunder rumbling as I type this and we are under a tornado watch. Hope that you are safe and dry today! Hope this bad weather doesn't interfere with the internet connection today, I need to visit my blog pals!

Monday Musing - My Inner Child

We each have a child inside of us. My inner little girl is excited about springtime. Little Melanie looked out the window daily longing for winter to leave. The day finally came that the Hope Flowers bloomed. When the grown up me saw them, the child laughed so hard that the grown up laughed too. It was a sign that winter would not last forever.
My inner child continued to stare out the window waiting and not very patiently either. The day came to plant potatoes and touch the dirt again. She was overjoyed that afternoon. The cool late afternoon air reminded the grown up exterior that it was time to go back in the house. My inner child cried that evening.
Little Melanie gets excited each year as the incubator is brought out. The eggs are carefully selected, it was important that an egg from Little Peep went into the incubator. We candled the eggs, monitoring their growth. She anxiously waited for the day the new chicks would arrive.
The first pip caused so much excitement; it was almost time for the new chicks. The faint chirping was heard and the crack in the shell grew. Henrietta’s egg hatched first. The chick struggled to emerge from the shell and finally take its first steps. I heard myself saying “please don’t be a rooster” several times. Three more chicks came into the world. There are now 4 tiny fluff balls. Each one is unique and mixed breed from 4 different hens. Little Peep’s egg did not hatch.
Little Melanie plays with the chicks and they know and respond to the sound of her voice. Springtime chicks are a delight and the child inside was happy to plant flowers also. My inner child has plans. She will repaint the birdhouse, although the sparrows will probably make a home there. She will plant more flowers and get the bird bath ready. She will sit in the grass guarded by a goose named Gus and loved by a cat named Jennydots. The day will come that the weather is just right and she will slip off her shoes and feel the cool grass beneath her toes. My inner child will watch the bees do their work and laugh at the antics of growing chicks. Listen carefully and you may hear her laughter, or is that the laughter of your own inner child?

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Bridal Wreath Bush

We live in an old farmhouse and there are a few old flowers still here. Bridal Wreath Bush is one of those old flowers.

The blooms are delicate and small flowers.

The blooms will not last long, sadly.

The blooms appear at the beginning of spring, after the Daffodils have faded.

Bridal Wreath is the name that I have always heard. The picture above reminds me more of a bridal bouquet than a wreath.
It is one of the few remaining older plants left here and is a favorite of mine. The appearance of the old fashioned bloom is proof that spring is here!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Spring Chicks

This is Tallulah Bell, she has watched the progress. It is easy to imagine what she is thinking.
We have 4 new chicks! 1 chick is an Americauna, they lay blue shelled eggs. The others are mixed breeds and should lay brown eggs if all are hens. The eggs are not blue, only the shells. I have found this to be a good breed. The hens are gentle and friendly and the roosters are good protectors, but not as aggressive towards us.
It is exciting to watch them grow and change! We candle the eggs weekly during incubation and keep up with the progress of the chicks. It is an amazing experience to watch their progress!
Generally the first chick that hatches is a cheerleader and will "call" the others out of their shells. It will sit beside the next egg about to hatch and appears to be cheering the chick on! The next chicks do not seem to take as long to hatch.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Monday Musing - Attitude Adjustment

Winter was difficult for the animals this year. Sunshine is appreciated as well the new growth. The Hope Flowers have faded for the year. Ruby Tuesday feels that they may as well go away; she doesn’t get to eat them. What good is a flower a goat doesn’t eat?

Little Peep has survived the seemingly endless winter and remains a happy chicken gal. She appreciates the new grass and knows where to find the best worms. The sunshine feels especially good to her these days. Finding the proper place for a good dust bath is a fun job, of course her Chicken ADD causes her to stop and stare off into space until something catches her attention.

We have decided that our Gertrude the Goose is actually Gus the Goose. Kevin is the enemy now and Gus feels that he must keep Kevin away from me.  

The springtime changes that occur in the animal world leave me watching in awe. A harsh cold winter doesn’t stop things in their world. They each emerge into the new spring world looking forward to warm days and will find delight in the pleasures we ignore. They accept their place in the cycle of life and seek to create the best life possible for themselves.

Little Peep isn’t concerned that she is no longer a spring chicken. She doesn’t look in the mirror longing for the days that her face looked young again. Ruby is unconcerned about aging as she is still a young goat and finds there is nothing worth worrying over. Gus doesn’t care to fly north and is content to protect me from Kevin; perhaps he enjoys treating Kevin as the enemy. He simply wants everyone to know that he is a handsome goose.

Once again, I am reminded that there is much to learn from these animals. They spend their time enjoying what they have, rather than fretting over what they do not have. They each look for ways to create the best life possible for themselves with the circumstances they have been given. They consider each day a gift and an opportunity. They will use each day as the gift that it is and maximize each opportunity to the best of their abilities. They remind me that my attitude needs adjusting and life is as sweet as we choose to make it, no matter what our circumstances, life is a good gift.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Monday Musing - Spring Secrets

   Spring has finally arrived! We waited for so long, and wondered if it would really happen. Spring brings change, often in our homes. We have this need to freshen our homes and I am not the only person freshening up. A Facebook friend posted that she had rearranged the furniture in her living room. That surprise was waiting for her husband when he came home.  My husband could empathize with this feeling, as he has experienced it many times. One day I half expect him to nail his chair to the floor so it can’t be moved.
My husband has learned to expect changes. He told me years ago that he just wanted to keep a place to sit and watch TV, a place to eat and to sleep. Those words were accompanied by music in my head. I was free to rearrange and change as I saw fit. Perhaps he figures that this was one of those things that not worth disagreeing about. I will remind him of this if he does nail that chair to the floor.
The spring changing fits have begun here. The dining and living room have been rearranged. We are expecting some out of town guests later on, so it was time to give the guest room a scrutinizing look. Would you like to know a secret? It won’t be a secret when Kevin reads this.  The guest room would be pretty if it were painted a pale robin’s egg blue.
This is what will happen when Kevin reads this.  He will be sitting in his chair holding the paper up. His hand will tremble a bit and with one finger he will pull the edge of the paper down, watching me. I will pretend not to notice. He will speak slowly and say “so you want to paint the guest room” I will turn and sweetly say “yes, we have company coming”.  Kevin will say “Robin’s egg blue? Now what kind of color is that” and I will reply “yes and it is a lovely color”. He will then sigh deeply and the paper will return to its previous position.
You now have a glimpse of what will be happening in our home early Sunday morning. Kevin will then know why he has had his favorite meals this past week. Looks like I will be frying chicken and making mashed potatoes Sunday.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Spring's First Random 5

The calendar says that it is here, so it is spring right? Just checking because it is colder this morning than it was yesterday morning. The endless winter wants to hang around as long as possible.
1. There have been a few afternoons that I could open the door for awhile. It was so nice!
2. The back porch will get the annual scrubbing this weekend. Let the decorating begin!

3. The back door will get a good rubbing down with Linseed Oil. It is planned for this weekend. It should be warm enough to keep the door open long enough for it to dry. The door hasn't been painted, ever, how many decades? I couldn't bear to put a brush to it! The painter and I discussed it last year, but glad that it did not get painted!
4. We candled the eggs this past week. This is always amazing to me! We skipped last year. We wanted to have fresh eggs this coming winter, and knew that we had to incubate. Store bought does not compare.
5.  Days are busier now. There is more to do and I am glad of that. Spring is a lot of work! The girls need a new hen house, Murphy (the duck) wants a female companion, Ruby could use a new house, the list goes on and on it seems. Such is spring at our house.
Linking to
A Rural Journal for Random 5 Friday

Thursday, March 20, 2014

New Old Ladder

The amount of creativity in blogland amazes me. Simple projects, complex projects, budget projects and elaborate projects, there is no end to the creativity found in blogland. The only limits are imagination, if it can be dreamed it can be created.

There are a number of these ladders on blogs and many appear to be antique, this one however is new. Handy husband made it for me!
Diana at Our Vintage Home Love shared a tutorial. The materials were inexpensive, and it did not take long for Handy Husband to complete this project.

The tutorial was well written and easy to follow. The project cost under $20. That is less than an antique ladder, if you are lucky enough to find one.

Dianna gave her ladder an awesome paint treatment, which I had planned to copy. We stained the ladder and once the stain dried, I loved the look and left it that way. Should I change my mind, it can be painted.
This is the second project I have completed this season. Two down and hundreds more to go!
Linking to
Deborah Jean's Dandelion House

Monday, March 17, 2014

Monday Musing - My Inner Child

I have read that inside each one of us is an “inner child”. I can tell you that there is a little girl inside of me. She emerges on the first warm day of the year. She waits for the first strawberries, first flowers, first baby birds, first rainbow, longer days of summer, and the most important event of all, the first day that she can get in the pool. The first day that the weather is warm enough to swim, is an event and my little girl inside dances on this day! She walks outside barefoot and feels the grass underneath her feet, holds her head back to feel the warm sunshine on her face spreads out her arms and twirls around until she falls on the soft grass, giggling the entire time. She gets up and runs and jumps into the cool water. Summer has arrived.

That hasn’t happened yet. My inner girl however, has noticed the warmer days that we have had. She walks outside and feels the warmth from the sun. She hears the birds singing and the animals in the yard seem to beg her to stop and play for awhile. Ruby calls from her pen and it is as if she is saying “come and play, we can romp around and you can scratch me between my horns”. Gus the goose calls as well as the chickens and other animals. The soil is still cool and the wind reminds her that it isn’t time to take your shoes off yet.

The long bitter cold days of winter found her sitting beside the window dreaming.  She dreamed the dreams of warm days on the porch swinging, breezes that cool warm skin and vegetables and fruits fresh from the garden. Those dreams will slowly become a reality.

We have been teased by a very few days that were warm enough to open doors and allow fresh air to move through our homes. There are more birds outside and the Hope Flowers returned. Warm weather can’t be far away. The hope that winter will not last forever is becoming a reality.

My “inner child” is delighted to see the changes happening. She knows what warmer weather will bring. Her eyes dance as she thinks about it. The temptation is too much and she slips her feet out of her shoes, feeling the cool ground beneath her feet. Spring is almost here meaning that summer can’t be far behind.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Random 5 Fridays

Spring hasn't completely arrived, she has given us a few teases though. These were welcome, even if they were only a tease. Allergies didn't wait, they are here now! No escaping that part of spring is there?
1.  My Bridal Wreath Bush will be in full bloom soon. It will be covered with delicate white blossoms.

2.  I wondered if the Camellias would bloom this year. They are a tad "burned" by the icy winds. Despite the seemingly endless winter, the blooms did appear.

3.We have put eggs in the incubator for the year. This past winter we barely had enough eggs, don't want to do that again this year. We have 15 eggs in the incubator right now.
4. Porch planning has begun! I plan to use lots of geraniums this year. I bought sheers for the side porch, can't wait to get them up!
5. We have had one day this year that I could open the doors and let the fresh breezes in! It was delightful! Atticus sat in front of the screen door enjoying the sights. I think he was as excited as I was to have the door open.
Linking to
A Rural Journal for Random 5 Friday

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Eggs, Eggs and More Eggs!

The girls have been working hard, getting ready for spring. Egg production has increased.
It was time to get the incubator out. We will "candle" these eggs and watch their progress. I am always fascinated to see the chick forming, growing and changing inside the shell. Before they hatch, we will hear their peeps, and then we will see the chick attempting to hatch.
The hardest part comes when the chicks are trying to hatch. It is hard work for them and I want to help them out. That is the worst thing I could do! The chicks must do this on their own.
The chicks should hatch at the end of this month. It is amazing to watch and find myself sitting beside the incubator cheering them on! I will watch in awe as they stand up for the first time, on tiny legs.

Linking to
Dandelion House for Farmgirl Friday

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

First Spring Project

 The weather here has been lovely for the past 3 days. That should change Wednesday. I was itching to get outside and play! I needed instant gratification, this quick simple project satisfied that need.
Last year, I picked up this pot at the thrift store. It was deep and it would be great to use as a dish to keep water in for the outside animals. It was. They have another dish now.
My husband drilled 3 holes in the sides and holes in the bottom for drainage. He added the chain from last year's basket.
There were flowers available at a local hardware store, I couldn't resist them. Real living flowers available to purchase and enjoy! It seemed like we would never see them again!

Linking to

Dandelion House for Farmgirl Friday

Monday, March 10, 2014

Monday Musing - That Q Word

Preparing meals for picky eaters can be a challenge. My husband is one of those picky eaters. The name of the food is important. It can’t sound healthy or fancy. Understand that my husband ate a steady diet of canned biscuits and French fries before we met. I on the other hand question if canned biscuits should be considered food.

Eating at our table was a shock for Kevin. We ate vegetables and there were no canned biscuits. It was my mission to introduce this man to a world of food that could be enjoyed. He has learned to try different foods, there were some he liked and some he didn’t. I learned that presentation was as important as the name of a food and learned to give a good description and often a name change to food before each meal. My fried food, canned biscuit eating boyfriend became my “give it a try” husband.

Kevin eats vegetables and has tried fish. He was very upset when I told him that French fries aren’t considered a healthy vegetable, even if they are fried in vegetable oil.

Quiche is one of those foods that he said he would not eat. He does however, like my bacon, tomato and cheese pie. He would never consider eating anything from a French cookbook. There are chicken dishes that he enjoys. Chicken Piccata and Beef Burgundy sound strange. Captains Chicken and beef with  gravy are delicious.

This made me wonder if I was dishonest with my husband. Were these little name changes an act of deception? It was time to confess that the Q word had been served in our home. Nervously I prepared his favorite bacon, tomato and cheese pie. It was served with a salad and fruit. Kevin commented that he liked it. The opportunity had arisen for the truth to be shared. I told him that it has a fancier name, it is quiche.  He turned and looked at me, registering the deception. “Huh, really that’s what quiche tastes like?” He then began talking about something else.

The Q word had been revealed and without disastrous results.  Why had I waited so long to tell him what it was? Many questions come to mind. Do I now reveal the truth about the cauliflower casserole? Will he eat asparagus? These questions remain, and the Q word is not longer taboo in our house.


Monday, March 3, 2014

Monday Musing - Seasonal Changes

This weekend brings changes. Meteorological spring begins, paving the way for the official start of spring later this month. The Hope Flowers are back again this year and the pollen has provided a blanket for vehicles.  These changes prompt me to think about our home. It happens yearly, my husband has learned to dread this annual event.

This year is no exception; standing up from the dishwasher the first wave of creativity hit me. My eyes rested on the hutch and table. The what if’s began. I walked toward the dining room as the ideas began washing over my mind like the waves on the shore. I spotted the bookcase and it may have gasped and began to sob. If it could talk it would proclaim that it liked that wall and didn’t want to move. The plan was forming and I would need to prepare the perfect proposal for my husband as his muscle would be required.

It was shared that evening after supper. He sat quietly listening to the details. Experience had taught him that it would be a waste of energy to attempt changing my mind. Kevin is a man that simply wants a place to eat, watch television and sleep. It is irrelevant if the furniture is shuffled around.

He sat quietly, asking few questions as I lay my idea before him. His body took the familiar defensive position as his mind weighed the options. The recliner moved back and forth. Time stood still for a moment, the dog sought refuge in her kennel and Atticus napped with one eye open. We waited for his response. The rocking stopped and Atticus opened both eyes. Kevin looked at me and said “okay if that’s what you want to do” and picked up the TV remote.

Was this a seasonal change? The ocean of ideas began washing over my mind again. Sensing this, he said “one at a time”.  I shared this story with Katie. She replied that her husband doesn’t “know how lucky he is” . I laughed silently because my husband may think that his son-in-law doesn’t know what he is in for either. The realization will hit him slowly. My Daddy may have thought the same thing about Kevin as he knew about the seasonal changes first hand.  Change may be the wrong word, perhaps it is a refreshing. Whatever the word, it is happening again much to the dismay of husbands everywhere.


Saturday, March 1, 2014

Saturday Sight

This was a welcome sight today. It is my bridal wreath bush.
It will be covered in white flowers soon. This is one of the first things to bud in the yard. Spring is coming!