A Trip to the Country

Once again David and I got into our Jeep and headed out to the country. This time we had a purpose. A bunch of ladies who call themselves the Country Friends, who do live out in the country have a sale every Autumn, Winter and Spring at their various homes or little stores on their properties.    It’s in the middle southern part of our state which means we drive hills , past lots of farms and through woods to get to every store.  One of the ladies even has a whole pioneer village built in her back yard!

Much of the items for sale are made by these ladies and there is even an artist who has her paintings for sale.   The last time we did this I purchased a mustard seed necklace one of them had made and I wear it all the time.  I also found an old wooden table with red legs that we have out on our back porch now.

I got a few treasures along the way this time, also.

I collect egg scales and I found this simply wonderful one that lights up so you can see inside the egg.  I weighed one of my eggs on this and it flew past the extra large.  I know my hens lay really nice eggs so I was glad to see just how big and good their eggs are.

I found this cute little lighted tree.  When I  brought it up to purchase another lady cried, “I wish I had seen that!  I would have bought it!”  It pays to be quick and decisive at these sales because once something is gone, it’s gone.

The tree has tiny baskets on it that I will put tiny pumpkins in for Fall and birds on the limbs.

It’s just magical lit up.  I have a bunny tree kind of like this one I put out at Easter time.

I’m not even going to tell you what I paid for this lamp, but it was so cheap, I grabbed it immediately.   I think the lady thought maybe she priced it a little low.  Let’s just say, I would have probably paid her twice what she was asking.  But don’t anyone tell her!  One thing David and I learned when we had a business. Don’t under price your merchandise or people will think it’s not worth it.  Sometimes we’d price something so high, especially if we didn’t want to sell it, and by George, there was always that one customer who just had to have it and we’d sell it.  David sold an old treadle sewing machine right out from under me once and I told him he would have to  find me another one, and he did and it now sits proudly in our front hallway.

The lamp  has these wonderful deer at its base.

And once again I think this looks magical, too.   It’s just perfect for this time of year. And right on to Christmas.

One of the ladies’ husband made this barn.  He wanted to make it a birdhouse, but she told David she wouldn’t allow him to cut a hole in it. Well, guess what?  David is going to cut a hole in it to make it a birdhouse.  It will make a wonderful birdhouse. Speaking of birdhouses. We have a little blue wren house in my kitchen garden and yesterday David and I watched several fat sparrows trying to get into it, but they couldn’t.  They just wouldn’t give up!   Several years ago we had a wren house and a sparrow tried getting into it, got its head stuck and David and I had to work to get that sparrow out of that tiny hole in the birdhouse.  Finally we managed it and it flew away, probably to tell its family of the adventure he had had.

These darling little jack-o-lanterns on a spring were for sale at one shop.  I bought two and put them on a picket fence David had made. He’s been making picket fences out of some old dog ear fencing we’ve had laying around for a while. I told him he could sell them they are so nice.  I will have to show you what these look like on one of them.

These are so cute and a nifty idea.

We got a new liner in our pool the other day and David had to swim even though the water was only 72 degrees.  Brrrr, Not me. My next post will show how it all was done from emptying the pool to filling it back up again.

Here’s to country friends and shops and may they live forever! Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Color, Texture and Pattern

From as long as I can remember, I have been interested in fabric and sewing and in recent years, knitting socks, also.  My earliest remembrance of trying to design something was when I was three years old.  My mother was outside hanging up clothes to dry and I was outside with her, when suddenly she noticed I was missing.  She began a frantic search all around the outside of our house and barnyard and up to our neighbor’s looking for me.  I can imagine how terrified she was that she could not find me.  She went into the house to call the town sheriff and there I was, sitting in my little chair behind the stove carefully drawing on the face of my favorite rag doll with lipstick. She had no idea I could reach the handle on the door to get into the house.  I don’t remember if she was angry or just happy to find me, but I remember that doll, how it was dressed in a pink dress with brown braided  yarn hair and to my mind, now looked even better with lipstick.  My mother gave me an old sock and told me to make a sock doll and I did, painstakingly sewing its arms and legs and drawing a face on it. I still have that doll and if I can find it in the bowels of this house, I will show you.  I have so many things tucked away that I have no idea where they are. My love of sewing and fabric had begun.

I remember clothes and textures from long ago. I always noticed what people wore.  Years later when my mother and I would go to the JC Penney store in the city and we would go to the fabric department, I remember loving walking through the rows of fabric, feeling each one and thinking about things to sew.  I couldn’t sew then, but my mother could and she made my clothes for years.  I remember in particular a white dotted swiss dress with red polka dots and  with a full skirt and a red velvet sash. I felt so pretty in that dress.  I wore it to the Ruth Lyons’ 50-50 club, a tv show out of Cincinnati. It was one of the first colorized tv shows in the area and my mother wanted my dress to show up well on camera.  The audience would be filmed waving and I’m sure I was on tv that day.

When I took Home Ec. in junior high, I made a suit from kelly green cotton. A short jacket and a straight skirt with a matching green and white print blouse.  I modeled it in the Home Ec. style show that was held every year.  I was a good seamstress by that time.

In the sixties and seventies, polyester knits were in vogue. I was married  at the time and I made David a polyester suit, jacket, pants and all.  When we look at pictures of him in that suit now, we laugh because I had placed the belt loops on the jacket too high and the jacket was belted almost up around David’s chest. But he wore that suit proudly.  I have a picture of him in it that is precious to me.

Many clothes passed through my sewing machine while my children were young. I made all three clothes. One of my sons told me his teacher didn’t believe I had made a shirt and pants he wore to school, but I had.  We went to a wedding in Detroit, Michigan when our boys were young and I made theirs and my outfits we wore to the wedding.  I use to sew clothes for display at JoAnn’s fabrics when a friend of mine worked there.

Fast forward years later and we had a quilt fabric store and my love of making quilts took hold and I’ve been making quilts ever since. I still love fabrics, but now I look at them online in most cases and order them sent to my home which I think is pretty wonderful.

This past Spring I backordered some Autumn and Halloween fabrics and I just got them in the last couple of weeks. It was like Christmas.  Let me show you some of the fabrics.

These cat eyes look like they glow, but they really don’t. Just how they turned out in the picture. Kind of spooky.

All the things of Autumn I love on one quilt panel.

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I love harlequin fabric.  A little of it in a quilt really looks nice.

Makes me want to make Halloween sugar cookies.

 

I am going to make a skirt out of this fabric.  It looks like just about any top would go with it.

I finished a quilt I started years ago. That is what I do. Start one quilt, put it aside, start another and then years later finish the first one. This one had been in a box for a long time until I found it again and finally finished it.

Not sure what this pattern is called.  I do remember it was fun to make and I found the perfect backing for it.

An old quilt I either bought at an auction or at an antique store. The colors on this old quilt went perfectly with the quilt on the front.

And I loved the fabrics the quilt maker used in her quilt top. I hope she would be glad her quilt is finished, even if it is the backing of another one.

She had a wonderful eye for fabric placement.

I love the old fabrics. Many look like they could have been aprons at one time.

She wasn’t afraid to use plaids.

Or indigos.

She must have had a large stash of fabric because there are so many different ones in this quilt. Not sure what year she may have made this, but I would say some of the fabrics are from the forties and fifties.   This quilt could be reversible as I think the back is just a as pretty as the front.

I’m in love with the textures and colors of yarn too.  Almost as much as I love fabric.

One company had yarn named after national parks. This one is called Zion National Park. I have already knit the socks from this and they are beautiful.

This is Grand Canyon.  Having been to the Grand Canyon twice, I can see the colors of the cliffs and the river below.

Just loved all these colors.

I don’t think I will ever tire of fabrics and yarn.  I’m hoping textures, colors and patterns will be a part of my life until I die.   I found my love very early in life and am so glad I did.

Here’s to the joy of doing something you love. Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another Drive Across Hoosier Land

Since we haven’t been able to take an extended vacation this year, David and I have settled for day drives within close proximity to our home.  We are getting to know our state, at least our part of the state and the more I see, the more I realize what a beautiful state we live in.

Sunday after church I was feeling like eating breakfast at Cracker Barrel so we drove the short drive from our house to the nearest restaurant.  When David went to sign us in, they said it would be over an hour’s wait to seat us. We both looked at each other and said we could do a lot in that hour. So, after taking care of the chickens, we set out to find another Cracker Barrel. The next closest one was just out of Bloomington so we drove there and got right in.

After my wonderful breakfast of French toast, eggs and sausage of which David ate the eggs because I don’t think any eggs are as good as our own, we set out on a drive on roads we’ve never been on before.

Back roads in the hills and valleys of south central Indiana.  We live in a very pretty part of the state where tourists like to come.

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Beautiful vistas all around us.  I love my state.

I especially love the country. I’m a country girl at heart.  I grew up north of these places where it is more flat.

We never use to see vineyards in Indiana. They were more in California, but in the last decade or so, vineyards have been popping up all over our state. This was the largest one I had ever seen.

Grapevines for as far as one could see.

Past these pillars, in the year I was born, this farm was established.  There is no house here anymore, but the two pillars that mark the entrance are still there. I wonder what happened to the people here. Where did they go?  Do their children and grandchildren still own the land?   It’s sad when a family farm leaves the family.

There are many trails to take around this area.

This one takes you past this lake and over a dam.  I wish I could still walk the distances I was walking just a few years ago, but since my heart trouble, I cannot walk very far without getting winded.  I don’t like it, but there’s no fix, I don’t think.  I see the doctor next week.  Maybe he can find out what the problem is.

This business planted trees here. They look like walnut trees.  We passed this bakery at one time during our drive.  Never would have known about this area or the bakery if we didn’t take back roads.  How much people miss driving highways and interstates all the time.

Of course we had to take pictures of old barns. Many are  becoming a thing of the past. When I see one that is well cared for, it makes me happy.

This was a tiny little barn or shed.  I just liked the color.

This barn was almost hidden by the large Weeping Willow in front of it.

David spied this cute little house as we sped by. So he had to back up so I could take pictures. I always wonder if the people in the houses see me taking pictures of their homes.  This one was so cute and interesting. I would have loved to have seen inside. It looked like it could only have one or two rooms so I wondered if it was a getaway home in the country for someone.

I loved everything about this little house. The color, all the things on its porch and on the sides of the house.  It was very interesting.

It even had an old wringer washer on its porch and deer antlers on its front.  I love country people. They are so imaginative and do such wonderful things to their properties that many city people can’t. So many people live in HOA’s that tell that what they can and cannot have on their property.  I couldn’t live that way.  My house would be banned from these places.  But some people like it.  What I don’t like is city people moving to the country and trying to change the country into a city.  I hear about people who move to the country and start complaining about the farm smells or the chickens or roosters making too much noise.  If they didn’t like that kind of thing, they should have stayed in the city.  I love the country and I see way too much of it being taken over by “developers” who build so many houses so close together and take away the country feel of an area.  David and I see that happening all around us and we keep talking about moving and building on our hill where the developers could never interfer.  But I love our home and would hate to leave it, so we wait and see.

We saw this gorgeous bird wading in the river.  I’m not sure what it’s called. I will have to search my bird book. We see blue herons around all the time, but it’s the first time we’ve seen a white one.

When the city moves in, birds like this move out.  So sad.

We saw several of these trees, but I don’t know what they are called. They are much prettier than my picture shows.

It was a fun day and a fun drive. We had intended to be out for only a couple of hours, but it ended up all afternoon and we got home just in time to feed our pups.

Here’s to country roads and the magic found on them. Bye.

 

 

Every Day is a Gift From God

I don’t often talk about my faith, but I guess I should do it more often.  I have a deep faith in a living God whose Son is my Master and Savior.  I wasn’t always a Christian, even though I went to church every Sunday with my family. I suppose a lot of people think they are Christians just because they go to church, but that is not how it works.   I didn’t know what being a Christian really meant.     But then one Friday night an evangelist explained what being a Christian is.   It’s having a faith in Jesus Christ, who died for all of us, taking our sins upon Himself so that we might enter Heaven one day.  We all are sinners. No one is completely  good even if you just stole a cookie when a child. That is stealing and God cannot allow any sin to enter Heaven so He sent His Son. All we have to do is accept Jesus’ gift of eternal life for us and it is a gift from One who loves you so much he would allow His Son to die a painful, horrible death on a cross.

Being crucified back in the past was a cruel way to die. You were nailed or hung on a cross until you suffocated or died of other causes.  Jesus did that for us.  I don’t know why it was on a cross, but I’m sure there was a reason. Anyway, I believe Jesus died for me and one day I will enter Heaven, not because I am so good, but because He took my sins upon Himself so that my sins would not enter Heaven.  I can’t explain it all. I’ve been studying the Bible almost all my life and I still don’t understand the mystery of receiving eternal life, but I know our spirits never die and have to go somewhere and I prefer mine goes to Heaven.

I believe every day is a gift from God and it is how we choose to live our life shows whether it glorifies God or it doesn’t.   I am not perfect. I still do bad things all the time like lose my temper or think badly of someone, but I know if I ask forgiveness, Jesus will take those sins upon Himself.

The days of Summer are certainly a gift from God.  I love these beautiful Summer days

Here are several reasons why I love Summer.

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I love these sweet little flowers that I grew from seed.  Each is perfect in its own way.

Rudbeckia.  A wonderful Summer flower.

The flowers in my front yard.

Stella De Oro day lilies.

My backyard full of Hibiscus plants.

This one is by our back porch.

The flowers are huge.

My little kitchen garden is full of Hibiscus and Cone flowers and Irises.  Seen through the screen of our back porch.

The Hydrangea by our front porch is especially beautiful this year.

A few years ago when we had our front porch built, one of the men on the crew who knew I loved flowers brought me this plant.  He told me I couldn’t kill it. And he was right. It comes back every year and spreads all over.

The Passion Flower. Doesn’t it look like a doily?  I think it does.

Someone wrote that God loves us so much He sends us flowers.  He has given me some beautiful ones this Summer and I thank Him for them.  How loved I feel.

He gives us the moon and we had a very bright moon a few days ago that shown in the skylight in our bedroom and lit the whole room.  My picture isn’t that great and it doesn’t show how yellow the moon was.  But it was a glorious sight.

This Mourning Dove and all its family visit our bird feeder every day.  They say people can hunt these in my state, but I don’t know why anyone would. There is not much meat on them and they are such a beautiful bird.  I love to hear their mournful call. It reminds me of the Doves I heard at my grandpa’s many years ago.

Who could shoot one of these birds?

Mr. Bunny came visiting me at the bird feeder.  He or she likes to nibble the seeds the birds drop on the ground. It doesn’t act afraid of me when it comes.

Something caught its eye, however.

And it leapt away.

I’ve spent some time in here this Summer. It has to be really hot for me to get in and it was hot a few days last month.  Hope I can get in at least a few more times before we close it.  We are getting a new liner put in this Summer or Fall when they get to us.  This liner is over twenty years old and has a few holes where puppies fell in and clawed their way out.  Sugar and Lucy won’t go in the water now.

They are such happy dogs. I tell them every day that they are spoiled rotten.

Molly agrees!

Just a few pictures of a drive we took the other day. We had had some heavy rain and the fields showed it.

The rivers were up.

We took a drive through a state forest.

We saw this enormous burl on a tree.  People sell these things.

One last thing.  I planted some old potatoes this Spring and what do you know, I grew more potatoes.

Probably almost a five pound bag full.  We boiled them and ate them and I fried the ones left over and they were good.

Hope God is giving you flowers and all the love you need.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

Being Alone, Solace, and Loneliness

Ever been alone?  Ever sought solace?  Ever experience loneliness?  I’m sure most reading this have done all three at one time or another.   When I was growing up on the farm I spent a lot of my time alone. Once in a while I got to have a girlfriend over and we had relations visit quite often so I wasn’t alone all the time.  I would go outside in the morning and not come in until dinner at noon and then, unless I had chores to do, back outside again until Supper.  I didn’t want to be inside.  In  fact, one time I came in the house in the afternoon and felt kind of strange because I had never been inside at that time of day.   My daddy never came inside except to eat as his work was outside on the farm.  A lot of the time I was with him or in the barn shooting baskets or playing with some young animal.  My older brothers were out doing their own thing and my sister was married. I had a younger brother and I must have played with him sometimes, but I really don’t remember.  We did shell peas together on the front porch and one time we were shelling the peas and throwing the pea pods all over the porch floor, thinking it was funny at the time, when our pastor came to visit. Mother came to the door and saw what we had done and she was not one bit happy about it. She kept silent until the pastor left and then we got it!  And we had to clean up all those pea pods.

I have sought solace at times when I was sad or upset about something. Going off alone and praying always has helped me.  I  go outside even now and sit on a swing and pray and talk to God.  Jesus often went off alone from the disciples to speak to His Father.  If it was good enough for him, it’s good enough for me.  Try it sometime when you need to have some peace.

Loneliness is a whole other thing. Ever felt alone in a crowd?  I have when I didn’t know anyone.   It’s tough to feel alone in those circumstances.   Some people just cannot stand being alone. I know a few of them.   They need people around them all the time. I think my alone time growing up prepared me for my alone times now that I’m adult. Ever hear someone say they are their own best company?  Sometimes that is how I feel.  I feel very comfortable by myself and I’m never bored. I usually agree with myself and we have really intelligent conversations!   I love to read, sew and knit and all those things are pretty much done alone. It’s not that I don’t like to be around people because I do.  When My children were growing up, there were times I would wish I had some alone time to read.  I did most of my reading right before bed and it’s become a habit for me.   Unfortunately, I usually fall asleep before I read very far.  So I’m trying to read more during the day.  I’ve been trying to catch up reading all my Reader’s Digests I have received in the mail.

My mother got the Reader’s Digest years ago and I would read them cover to cover.  I kept taking it through the years after I was married. They have so many interesting stories and articles and I try to read all of one before I throw it away.  But I got a backlog of them and am playing catch up.   Do you take the Reader’s Digest?   It’s one of my favorite magazines.  Farmhouse Style and Yankee Magazine are two others I enjoy.  But why do I take magazines when I have thousands of books waiting to be read?

Back to being alone.  I really don’t mind being alone.  I have so many things running around in my mind that I want to do and I already have so many projects I am working on.  And even if I didn’t, I have a good imagination that keeps me occupied.   When I was a girl, I dreamed of being an author. I would walk around and tell the story of my life in my mind describing my movements and what I was thinking.   I also had a horse story with the same characters I would think about. It was an ongoing story for years and I don’t know when I stopped thinking about it. Probably when I got my own horse.  I’m thinking this blog will come as close to writing a book I will get.

What do you do when you are alone or suffer loneliness?  Where do you seek solace?   Everyone handles being alone differently and there really isn’t a right answer.   I do not like to shop alone or go to the doctor alone even though I do.  There are some things I don’t like doing alone.  I find myself wishing I still had my mother to take me to the doctor or dentist because I really don’t like to go to either one by myself.   Funny, because it was my daddy who always took me to the doctor and he took me to my one and only dentist’s visit when I needed a tooth pulled and the dentist was so mean, my daddy gave him a dressing down and told him he would never bring any of his children to him.   I didn’t go to a dentist again until I started taking my children and then I had my teeth checked.  One time I stepped on a rusty nail and my daddy took me to our old country doctor and all he and my father talked about was people getting lockjaw(tetanus) and dying from it because they had not had a tetanus shot. Scared me to death!!  So I was glad to get a tetanus shot and I still ask for them now every ten years or so since I work so much outside.  I have heard of people getting tetanus from digging in the ground.

As usual I have strayed far from my original essay.  Alone, loneliness and solace.  People suffer every one of these in their lives. It’s how you handle them that matters.  Hope no one feels alone tonight or suffers loneliness. Bye.

 

An Anniversary and a Wedding

David has been on vacation the last week and it’s been a busy one.  We celebrated our fifty-third wedding anniversary on the 7th with eating out and that is about all.  I was not feeling well for three days, nausea and just the blahs so I didn’t feel like eating much.  I’ve pretty much given up fried food because it always upsets my stomach so we went to Olive Garden for their  soup and salad lunch with breadsticks.  It was so good.  I felt like I kind of missed our anniversary in some way, but the week got better.

My granddaughter’s wedding was three days after our anniversary and as they were not having a wedding cake she asked me to make a few cakes, so I did. I made an orange chiffon cake, a chocolate cake and a magic pumpkin pie cake and I also baked seven dozen sugar cookies and iced them.  I was in the kitchen for two days making all this.  Other people brought desserts also so there was a table laden with them all.   There were so many desserts at the reception they were begging people to take pies home.

The wedding was in a church in Anderson about an hour away so we packed up Saturday morning and drove up.

Pictures were taken. This David and I with the bride and groom and our daughter’s family. I look a little grim here. Don’t know why.  I so hate my picture taken. Always have.

First time all three of our children have been together in years.

The bride with her red headed brothers and the groom with his brother.  His brother caught the garter at the reception and his girlfriend caught the corsage so maybe there’s another wedding in their future.

These ladies provided the music for the wedding.  I can’t remember the song the bride came in on, but the music the bride and groom left the church was from Star Wars!

The reception was held in a museum in Anderson.  It had beautiful architecture and there were interesting paintings on the walls.

This beautiful fireplace graced one room.

These were a couple of the paintings for sale. I really like the one with the chickens and for three hundred dollars I could have it.

After the meal there was dancing.   Everyone looked like they were having so much fun.

Mother of the bride.

My son and his new wife.

He danced with his daughter to the song, “Daddy’s Little Girl,” which brought some tears to my eyes.

Back to real life the day after and our pups had found a treasure while we were gone.

Both Lucy and Sugar were anxious to show us their treasure.

While we were gone they had dug up a huge mole in our yard.

Lucy was running around with the mole in her mouth with its feet out one side of her mouth and its head out of the other.  Ugh. Thank you, Lucy, but you can keep it for yourself. Every time I went into the yard today she ran up to me trying to give it to me.

My little garden in front of my shop is blooming.

I trimmed the lavender and it is coming back again.

The zinnias are blooming.

These are blooming, but I don’t know what they are called. Ever plant something and then wonder what you planted?  Happens to me all the time.

I bring this Begonia in every year and every year it gets prettier and prettier.

And some more flowers coming up that I’m not sure what they are.

David has another week off so we are going to try to celebrate our anniversary some more.  I know that Red Lobster is in our plans.  And Mexican.

Here’s to anniversaries and weddings.  May they always be celebrated. Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Summer Drive

David and I bought a Jeep last Spring and haven’t really driven it many places except to work and the grocery since we got it, so one day last week we decided to take a drive through southern Indiana.   Indiana in Summer is so beautiful.  Everything is just bursting in bloom and leafing out.  The corn is growing and most fields will be knee high by the fourth of July.  That means the corn will be ready to harvest after the first frost.

Farmers are getting in their hay. It’s been good weather for it.

Bales of hay laying in the fields assures the farmer he will have feed for his cows this Winter.

I’ve seen my daddy baling hay many times while my brothers walked along behind the wagon he would pull and stacked the hay bales that would taken into the barn.  So much of the hay baled today are the big round bales and oftentimes they are left out in the field.

We saw this huge field of hay bales and it looked so picturesque.

The farmer’s pond was below the hayfield and I bet his cows were standing around it on this hot day getting a cool drink of water.

Farmers use to have barns that looked like this.  So many barns are going into disrepair.

Like this one. One time this was a grand barn full of animals and hay.  Now it stands as a sad reminder that if you don’t repair a roof, the rest of the building will soon be destroyed by the wind and rain.

It’s what happened to the barn on my family’s farm after it was sold.  The roof came off and the barn caved in. So sad.

At one time a farmer’s wife probably planted this rose and now it grows wild along the fence beside the old barn.  This barn looks like someone takes care of it.

Barns aren’t the only buildings that are falling into the ground. Old houses pepper the landscape along the backroads of Indiana.

Then we pass well cared for homesteads that you know the people love and want to keep it up.  This house is just beautiful and all the out buildings are in very good repair.

We couldn’t decide whether this was a newly built barn or someone’s house.  It has a lot of windows, but it looks like a barn.

We wondered why the trees were like this in just his area and we saw this sign.

Pin Oak trees in a wetland.

Such a sweet picture of mama and her baby.

We passed the Hoosier Horse Camp where people can bring their horses and camp and there are covered stalls outdoors for the horses to stay in when they aren’t being ridden.  How much fun would that be to camp with your horse?

There were ponds in many yards and fields.

Someone had a mailbox high in the air and had Air Mail painted on it.

Caution:  Death scene ahead!!  If you don’t want to see it, don’t scroll any farther.

 

 

 

 

 

We came across this grisly scene.

A dead deer in a field and many turkey vultures having their dinner.

There was a bunch of them. We disturbed them when they stopped and many flew away.

This one refused to budge.  I call these birds God’s scavengers because they scavenge the countryside in roads and fields and eat all the dead animals they find. I can see them lazily skimming the air currents above our house all the time looking for some small animal to eat.  I tell them to stay away from my chickens!  If not for these birds, there would be a lot of dead animals laying around and smelling so I appreciate them.

Our ride took us to Madison, Indiana, a little town on the Ohio River. It has a lot of cute little shops and it has many tourists that come visit.  I use to always come here for fabric at Margie’s fabric shop, before quilting became a fad, because she carried the old reproduction fabrics I could not find anywhere else.  There is a wonderful antique mall here and a park along the river with benches all along it where people can come sit and watch the boats go by.  They have a regatta every year with speed boats and that brings thousands to this tiny town.  David and I found a bench and sat and watched all the river activity.

We saw this bird sitting on a rock looking for fish.

The more pictures I took of it, the longer its neck seemed to get!

There were several ducks swimming on the river and down the way, children were leaping off a pier and swimming. Oh, to be a kid again.

Madison has a beautiful courthouse and this statue on its lawn.

We saw this tree all a bloom, but I didn’t know what kind it was.

It was loaded with white flowers.

Anyone know what this is?  It sure was pretty.

I have the sweetest little plant in my kitchen garden called Mallow and this year it has flowered very well.

The flowers look like tiny Rose of Sharon flowers.

I am going to have to try to paint these.  They are so pretty.

I’ve been doing some projects and this is one of them.

That white mailbox I showed you a while ago is now painted.

I copied this planter. I’m not an artist, but I do love to paint.  I’m working on a larger mailbox painting quilt blocks on it. The watering can behind these was painted by one of my grandsons years ago when I had them for camp and this was a project.

And last, but certainly not least, David cut some rhubarb for me the other day and I made the first pie I have made in a very long time.  I can’t remember the last time I had made a pie, but this one turned out very well.

It didn’t last very long, I will tell you that.

Hope your Summer is as lovely as mine has been.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Already June

If the days go much faster, I may as well stay in bed because night comes so fast and I wonder what I got done and where did the day go?    It’s crazy.  We have been busy the past few weeks and every time I think I will write a blog post, something else takes my attention and another day is gone.  With grandson’s ball games and our granddaughter’s wedding shower we don’t lack for places to go.

Got to see one of this young man’s ball games.  The ball park was out in the boondocks. We drove and drove back roads and finally found it, then discovered there was a shorter way to it, but the drive was nice.  His team lost, but he did strike out all the batters in the inning he pitched except one who hit a homerun.   I love watching baseball because I understand it and I use to play it when I was a girl.  I was on a girls’ softball team one Summer and we traveled around to different towns and played.  It was so much fun and it was a great bunch of girls on the team.   I think we were pretty good if I remember right.

And we got to see this young man play soccer.  I understand soccer pretty well, but because we were sitting so far away, it was hard to tell who was who.  His team won their game.  Just wish the boys lived nearer so we could go to more games because I really love seeing them play.

One of my projects this Spring was to clean off my shop porch and make a small raised bed garden in front of it.  My porch had become the catch all for everything from garden supplies to David’s tools, to just junk so I want it all gone.

We took some steps from our old back deck to make the raised beds. Turned the steps upside down and there we had a raised bed.

An old chicken laying stand is used for a backdrop and to display a few flowers. I found the white chicken at an antique store a couple of weeks ago and I bought the metal chicken at Rural King last year. The little girl statue is named Sara after our daughter.

Since this picture was taken the leaf lettuce is almost ready to pick.  I love wilted lettuce made by cooking chopped onion and bacon together, stirring in some vinegar and brown sugar and pouring it over leaf lettuce. Yum.  Don’t have the measurements I use, just trial and error.

We have had this old grill sitting back by the dog pen for the last few years and every year I told David I wanted to do something with it, so this year I did.   Cleaned it up, sprayed it with spray paint and it makes a wonderful place to plant flowers and display them.   I’m really pleased with it, if I do say so myself.

Used some barn quilts I painted a few years back to hide the mess under the porch table.

Put this lavender in a maple syrup bucket.

I have lots of room in front of my shop to plant a lot more if I want to. Since it’s hazardous to anything I plant in the back yard with the puppies still chewing on everything, I am using what I can to plant what I can. Just this week they tore out an azalea I had just transplanted while digging for a mole, so I put the azalea in my kitchen garden which is fenced in.  I will have to show you that garden another time. I have been pulling wheel barrows full of weeds out of it. I haven’t been able to weed in there for the past few years and the Creeping Charley took over. Now Creeping Charlie is kind of pretty in its own way, but it tends to take over a flower bed and a lawn.  It just about kills me to weed now, but I’m determined to get that garden back in shape. I have discovered several Hibiscus that were overtaken with the weed, but now they have sunshine and just in the past couple of days they have grown taller. I also pulled out poison ivy and dug up a little tree that had taken up residence.

A few years back I planted some wildflower seeds from Wildflower Seeds Farm out of Fredericksburg, Texas.  We visited there a few years ago and it was amazing.  Anyway, the only flowers that keep coming back from that planting are these Dame’s Rocket.  And they have spread.  I’ve got potatoes planted in that old wash tub that doesn’t have a bottom.

 

Dame’s Rocket is so pretty. It crossed the drive and planted itself right by our walk up to our  front porch. We had to mow some down because it was taking over, but I love it.

Here it is by the front porch steps. I really wouldn’t care if it spread all over the yard. It seems to bloom forever and it’s self-seeding which are wonderful traits for a flower.

Just a few of the Iris I have in my gardens.  One day a complete stranger stopped and asked me if he could have a start of that bright orange Iris. I told him sure if he had anything he could trade me for it.  So a few days later that man brought me a small lilac bush and this year those lilacs were so beautiful and smelled heavenly and we already have transplanted another lilac bush from it and there is another sprout we are going to transplant.  So it’s fun to trade plants with people. I hope my flowers are doing as well for that man. And those orange Irises have spread to different parts of the garden and I haven’t touched them!

The snowball bush I thought had died last year put on quite a show although the flowers were smaller than usual.

And the small bush that we transplanted from the older bush really did well this year.  We got the original plant from David’s grandmother’s yard years and years ago.

You can make a planter out of anything. This is an old fertilizer spreader that’s seen better days.  Just a paint job and David put a board inside to hold the dirt and voila!  Flowers in bloom.

The peonies were absolutely gorgeous this year. My favorite flower. And here is art imitating life. I painted the picture last Winter and tried to imitate it with my own bottle and flower.

Funny what I can get up to with time on my hands!

Who doesn’t like peonies? If you don’t, I’m not sure about you!   They are so beautiful and many smell so good. Their only problem is they don’t last long enough in the Spring.  I’ve ordered nine more of them for planting this Fall.

If I were getting married again I would want a huge bouquet of peonies to carry down the aisle.

I love Spring skies. Pastels just like in the garden. Finally warmed up enough that I wasn’t chilled for a few days and then it got cold again and now it’s back to normal.

I have much more to write about, but I will end with two of the best things that have happened in the past month. My oldest son and his girlfriend finally decided to get married.  They have been together for eleven years and her son is like a son to my son(got that?)  So one day they just decided to get married without a ring or anything.  They bought a house together.

It’s in a beautiful division with houses that look old from the outside.  It’s very pretty on the inside also.

This is the happy couple and their son and dog, Annie who is so cute.

I think they all like each other and I officially have six grandchildren now.  The more, the merrier.

And speaking of weddings. Our oldest granddaughter is getting married in July just three days after our 53rd wedding anniversary.  A shower was held for her last Saturday.

There was lots of yummy food although this is the only thing I got a picture of.

This girl is not my granddaughter, but I’ve known her since she was a wee baby. She and her mother and I made quilts for the babies at Riley’s Children’s hospital. When she was first born she spent her first few weeks there because she was premature, but here she is now. The quilts were her senior project by the way and now she’s already graduated from college and is teaching English.

My granddaughter in glasses. She graduated from Purdue University in three years with honors, already has a job this Summer at the Children’s museum and she and her future husband have already bought a house.  She got straight A’s, by the way, but I’m not at all proud of her!!!

We all wrote questions for her to answer and also we wrote down when we first met her and she had to guess who wrote each note.  It was easy for her to guess mine as I’ve known her since she was born.

There were lots of laughs and some tears, but a good time was had by all.

I will end right here which is a good way to end. Bye.

 

 

 

 

What’s Happening

Once again I lost a complete blog including the pictures.  Our son got the blog running again and my pictures are up there somewhere in a cloud, I guess, but to get each one in the right place on every blog I’ve written the last several years would take a miracle and I don’t have the brains to figure out how to do it, anyway, and it would take me months to untangle it all, so I’m starting over again.

I’ve been taking lots of pictures because this time of year is just beautiful and we have done some family things and I’m working on several projects.  Maybe my next post I will have pictures ready, but right now I’m just too tired to do it.  David and I have been planting trees and perennials. Well, I point and David plants them where I tell him to.   I’ve ordered nine more peonies that won’t be delivered until Fall so we will have time to get their beds ready.  Since we aren’t planting too much in the back yard right now because of the puppies, I made a little garden in front of my shop with flowers, potatoes, cucumbers and leaf lettuce growing.  We sit out on the swing and I tell David this is my little world, all of it.  When we do plant something in the back yard we have to put fencing around it or it would be totally destroyed.   Sugar seems to be the main culprit chewing on everything she can find.  She hauls up whole logs and chews on them. She must have a stomach of steel as it doesn’t seem to harm her.

Speaking of Lucy and Sugar and Molly, too, all three dogs have become wonderful fetchers.  Lucy goes so far as to try to throw the toy to us when she brings it.  And she’s very demanding about us throwing toys for her.  I’ve never seen a dog who loved to fetch as much as she does.  Sugar on the other hand will run with the toy and won’t bring it.  She needs  a little work, but we will teach her.

I finished another quilt top. A basic four patch and I find I love the simplicity of it and can’t wait to get it completed.  I had the perfect backing for it, just hope it’s big enough.  I have another quilt on the machine and as soon as I get it done, I’ll start quilting the four patch.

Our granddaughter, our oldest grandchild, graduated with honors from Purdue University this week.  She was only allowed two tickets so we didn’t get to go. She graduated in three years with a grade point average of 4.0.   All A’s.  She doesn’t take after me that’s for sure.   She is getting married in July and then will go straight back to college to get her Masters.  She is working in a museum this Summer which is what she wants to do.   Plus she and her fiance’ have already purchased a house.  And they say bad things about this generation.  I don’t think so.

I’ve read several good books. I discovered the author, D.E. Stevenson, who writes about English life in the forties, fifties and sixties. They are gentle stories which I find to my liking. No swear words in them.  What is it with authors and/or writers of all types who think they must include cursing and taking God’s name in vain? Every movie I’ve watched lately the actors use the “F” word.  To be honest, I don’t know anyone who uses that word or curses with abandon.  I’m not saying I’ve NEVER used a curse word, but it’s usually when I’m alone and am frustrated about something.  I’d be ashamed for anyone to hear me, though.  Anyway, I just would love to watch a good movie with no cursing.  David and I did just finish watching Five Stories Up with Morgan Freeman and Diane Keaton. Two of my favorite actors.  I don’ think either one has ever made a bad movie.  At least I’ve never seen a bad one of theirs. Seems they know how to pick them.   Some actors just consistantly choose bad movies to be in. Is it poor judgement or do they really think they can make them better?

About my granddaughter’s wedding. Neither she nor her fiance’ like wedding cake so they are asking several people to bring a dessert. I am baking several different cakes and have been looking at a couple I want to test before the wedding to make sure they are good.  One is called Magic Pumpkin Cake, a cross between a cake and a pumpkin pie with whipped topping on top. I think it’s a really good idea of them and lets people be involved in the wedding.  I did ask my granddaughter to please not have me speak in front of everyone.  At our daughter’s wedding years ago me and the other mother had to light the  Unity candle and while we were lighting it, it fell over and I imagined the whole place going up in flames. Luckily the other mother had the sense to put it upright again and we continued with the lighting.   Our granddaughter is having her wedding held in a museum. Seems she has a theme going.

I think I will finish right now. Just wanted you to know I had not left my blog. My blog left me.

Here’s to many more posts to come. Bye.

 

Trying Out a New Blog Page

If you hadn’t noticed, I’ve been gone from the Blog world for a while. I lost my other blog and my son is trying to set me up with a new one, so this is a test run.  A lot has been going on in my piece of the earth and I am looking forward to once again writing. I’ve been lost without my blog and telling you all that I’ve been up to, no matter how boring it can be!  So if you are reading this, I hope  to be writing regularly in the next few days. Bye.