Oliver The Miracle Dog Part 2

continuing…….

Day 8

  Oliver looked like half the dog he use to be.  He had lost a lot of weight.  He slept restlessly because he knew the coyotes were nearby.  What did they want?   Pull on the chain until exhaustion set in.  Once again that night the owl hooted in the tree above him.  It sounded like a death knell in the quiet woods.

Day 9

  It was a day of reckoning.   The coyotes had found Oliver.  There were two of them, a male and a female.  Both were thin from lack of food.  They had been hunting for days for something to eat.  They saw in Oliver a chance for a good meal. They had dealt with dogs before and knew they could be dangerous, but this one looked weak and tired with not much fight in him.   Should they try for a kill?  They lay in the forest, waiting patiently for their chance.  Oliver knew they  were there, but he could not see them.  His heart raced.    He could not go to sleep, but waited for the attack.

Day 10

   Oliver knew the coyotes meant him harm.  For the first time in his life he felt real fear.  The coyotes drew nearer and nearer, crawling stealthily toward him.  Closer and closer they came.  Oliver stood up on his three good legs and pulled on the chain.  He didn’t know it, but the chain was rusty and had been weakened as he pulled against it.  He lunged and lunged. The coyotes stepped back  With all the strength he could muster he growled a warning growl.  As fierce a growl as he had ever growled.  Oliver had never growled in his life.   He showed his sharp teeth. His eyes glittered.   He was not going down without a fight.  The coyotes were patient.  They could wait. Night fell.  A strange stillness fell over the forest.

Day 11

  It was them or him.  Oliver knew by instinct that he was in for the fight of his life.  Oliver was not a fighter.  He was a sweet, patient and loving dog.  But today called for a new Oliver.  A warrior dog.  His very life depended on it.  The coyotes came in for the kill, circling him, snapping their sharp, little teeth.  Growling growls Oliver had never heard before.

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Two against one.  Oliver lunged at them snarling and snapping his teeth.  He grabbed one of the coyotes by the nape of its neck, shook it hard and threw it from him.  It got shakily back on its feet and slunk off into the forest.  The other coyote, the female, followed its mate.  They knew they had met a dangerous dog.  They would have to find a less aggressive prey for their next meal.   Oliver didn’t know it, but he had saved his life that night.

  Oliver lay down with his head on his paws watching the coyotes leave.  Would they be back?  He didn’t know, but he did know he hadn’t much fight left in him.   He was so tired, scared and hungry.   And the thirst.  It could not get worse.  Or could it?   The night came and the owl hooted. This time Oliver welcomed the company.

Day 12

    Oliver was so tired and hungry.  He just lay all day.  He could do nothing else.  It was a beautiful Winter’s day.  Was he going to die all alone in the forest?  Would his buddies get a new dog to replace him?

  High above in the clear, blue sky turkey vultures were circling.

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One stretched its wings wide, sailing on the wind, catching the updrafts  as it searched below for carrion.  It’s beady eyes looked back and forth over the landscape for a dead animal to eat.   Suddenly, it spied something next to a tree below.   Lower and lower it floated toward the ground until it reached a treetop.  It landed on a tree limb directly above Oliver.  It sat there staring for a long time at the seemingly dead animal below it.  Believing it had a meal ahead, it flew to the ground and moved closer.

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  Suddenly, the animal came to life.  Oliver awoke and saw the big bird next to him and he rose tremulously on his three legs.  The leg in the trap just hung limply and useless.  The vulture looked at him with interest.  Oliver found his voice and let out a series of barks that startled the bird and sent it flying back up into the branches to safety.   This obviously was not a dead animal and not his next meal.  Flapping his wings,  he flew away up into the air with the other vultures  still searching and searching for another dead animal.

 Oliver sighed and lay back down wondering if this horror would ever end.

Day 13

  Oliver awoke strangely rested and with a new sense of courage he had never felt before.  He had thwarted the coyotes’ attack.  He had chased a big bird away. He felt like he could do anything. Now he must get free.  He knew his buddies were waiting for him.  He just knew it. He wanted to see them so badly.

  He rose on his three good legs, the fourth dangling uselessly, held fast by the wicked trap.  He began to pull and pull.  He pulled all morning, stopping only for little rests.   He panted, but there was no moisture left in his mouth. If he did not get water soon, he would surely die.  One more time, he gave a mighty pull and suddenly, freedom!   The chain around the tree had finally broken.  But Oliver could not walk.  He would have to crawl. So, he did.

Day 14

  Oliver had crawled all night.  It was slow moving through the forest.  Crawl, try to walk a bit, then crawl again.  He didn’t know whether he was headed home, but he kept moving.   He crawled all day.  He came upon a creek where he got the first drink of water he had had in days.  Oliver drank the cool, fresh water and felt invigorated.   It tasted so good.  Best water he had ever drunk.  He lay there enjoying the Winter sun upon his back, but he knew he must keep moving and find safety because the forest is a dangerous place for a wounded animal.  He crawled some more until he saw a road. He knew humans traveled these roads.  His buddies traveled them all the time.  He crawled as close as he could to it and collapsed.  He lay there quietly waiting.

  A woman was driving on this particular road that day, singing along with some music on her car radio. Enjoying the perfect Winter day.   Then she saw what appeared to be a large animal laying beside the road.  Was it a deer.  Deer were hit by cars quite often in this part of the country and were seen alongside the roads regularly.   She slowed her car and looked down at the animal. It was a dog!   An emaciated, dirty, dog with a badly matted coat and there was a trap on one of its legs.  She got out of her car.  Was it breathing?   She walked slowly toward  Oliver and he lifted his head weakly.   Yes!  It was alive and she began to cry at the condition of the poor dog.   She called 911 and they contacted animal control who came and they tried getting the trap off Oliver’s leg, but it was so strong they were unable to get it off him.  They had to find his owners.  Oliver had ID on him and they quickly found his buddies on the big hill.

  When his buddies saw Oliver they were so glad to see him, but were shocked at his condition.  Mama buddy called Papa buddy who took Oliver to the veterinarian where Oliver’s leg had to be amputated.   The vet was very unhappy about this because she had seen other animals in her office who had been caught in traps. Just a few days before Oliver, she had had to remove the toes of a Great Horned Owl who had been caught in a trap.

   In a few days, Oliver was back home with his family.   Laying on his warm bed with food in his stomach, he could almost forget the ordeal he had gone through, but not quite because some things startled him now that never startled him before.  Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome is possible even with a dog.  He still had to learn to walk.

  And he did.

The End

   Trapping is one of the cruelest ways of hunting animals.  Even at that, the trapper is supposed to check his traps every few days.  This particular trapper had not checked his traps for at least fourteen days and probably longer, leaving a poor, defenseless dog to suffer for days and lose a leg.   Stop all trapping.

Oliver the Miracle Dog Part I

This story is based on what happened to our daughter’s dog, Oliver.  I have taken literary license with some of it, but a lot of it really happened.  This is illustrated by my grandson, Tristan, who is an aspiring artist.  He is also one of the “little buddies” mentioned in the story.

 

Oliver, a beautiful Golden Retriever, lived at the top of a tall hill with his buddies, the Larsons, his goofy son, Farley and Lily, the mother of Farley.  They were a wonderful Golden Retriever family.

It was a wonder life.  Eating, sleeping, running after thrown balls, exploring the forest all around.  There were head rubs and playing with his little buddies as they rode their bicycles in the driveway or played in their hideout in the woods.

One cold Winter’s day Oliver awoke and went to the door to be let outside.  Now Oliver was a roaming dog.  At one time he disappeared on one of the coldest nights of the year and didn’t return home until the following morning, no worse for wear.  It had worried his buddies greatly.  Big buddy had called for him for a long time. He heard him, but the smells of the forest were too enticing.

This particular day he lifted his nose into the air and grew giddy with the wonderful odors that wafted on the breezes.  “I must see where all these smells are coming from,”  he thought to himself.   So off he bounded.

Oliver ran quickly on his four sturdy legs, his tail like a plume, stuck in the air.  There was a squirrel smell.   The squirrel had not been there for a long while.  Move on.  There a possum smell.  Not much to Oliver’s taste, but playing with a possum as it played dead was great fun.

Then Oliver smelled coyote.  These were ones with whom he did not want to cross paths.

Deeper into the forest Oliver ran, nose to the ground.  Suddenly, he saw movement.   A rabbit!   Off Oliver went chasing the rabbit among the trees until the rabbit reached his home in the ground and popped inside.  Oliver sniffed around the hole and would have dug around it if the ground had not been frozen solid.   “Hmm,”  Oliver thought to himself.  “I’m hungry, must go home.”  But which way was home?

The day was coming to an end.  Oliver had been in the forest all day. His buddies would be home fixing supper and doing homework around the kitchen table while the dogs would be eating their final meal of the day and settling down for the night.  The sun was lowering in the sky  Oliver ran and ran, so full of life and happiness just being alive when suddenly, SNAP!  He felt a great pain in his back leg as a coyote trap snapped its ugly jaws around it.  He yipped in pain, trying to jerk away from the trap.  But the trap was attached to a chain that was wound around a tree.  Whoever had set this trap meant to keep his prey right there.

Again and again Oliver pulled and could not get free.  Blood gushed from the gruesome wound.  The sun went down.  It was cold.  Oliver was all alone.  He whined and moaned.  The pain was great, but nobody could hear him or knew where he was.  The pain was almost too much to bear.

Day 2

   Oliver had managed to sleep a bit through the night, but the pain and his hunger would not let him sleep very long.  He also was beginning to feel a terrible thirst.

   All that day he pulled and pulled to try to get away from the trap, but it just held on tighter.  The pain was so great.  Where were his buddies?   All that long day Oliver felt sad and lonely and scared.  it was cold and night came again and the forest was quiet all around except for the rustling of the night creatures and the birds who were settling in for the night.

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  Day 3

  Another long night for Oliver.  He had heard an owl hooting in the tree above him.  A sad, lonely sound to Oliver.  He missed his buddies. He missed his soft bed and the warm house.  Most of all he missed his food and a cold drink of water.  He spent part of the day trying to pull free, to no avail.  He lay panting and feeling very sad.

Day 4

  Snow fell gently on Oliver as he lay with his nose on his forelegs.  A tear fell from the corner of his eye.  He had been forgotten.   He didn’t realize his buddies were looking for him and calling his name into the forest, but Oliver had traveled so far from his home, he could not hear them.  He only felt the pain of the trap on his leg. He pulled and pulled on it.  His beautiful golden coat had become dirty and stuck through with dead leaves and twigs.  Night came.   Nobody came to save him.

Day 5

  Oliver felt dizzy and sick.  Where was he?  Why wasn’t he in his nice, warm bed?  Where were his two little buddies who lay on top of him and scratched his ears?   He slept and dreamed of playing with Lily and Farley in the yard with his buddies all around.   Would he never see them again?  Pull on the trap chain again and again, but it remained securely wrapped around the tree.  Night time and danger was lurking.

  That Night Oliver heard strange noises in the forest.  He smelled smells that worried him.  He must get free.  Pull harder.  Lunging and jumping with every bit of strength he had.  The chain moved a bit, but still was attached to the tree.  He did not want to give up.  His buddies were waiting

Day 6

   Oliver was so tired from the last night’s exertions.  He felt so helpless.  Suddenly a squirrel came close to him and sniffed Oliver.  Seeming to know it had nothing to fear from the sad looking dog, the squirrel proceeded to gnaw on a nut it had just dug up from a hole where it had hidden it in the Autumn.  Oliver just lay there and watched it listlessly.  “I’d bite you in two if I could get to you,” he thought about the cheeky squirrel.  It made him angry.  “If only,”  he thought.   Oliver was in that poor, thin, starving dog somewhere.  He was so cold, hungry and thirsty.  Why was he here?  Did no one love him anymore?

Day 7

    A day of rest from pulling on the chain.  By this time Oliver had grown use to the pain.  His leg was growing numb. If it  wasn’t attended to soon, gangrene would set in. Luckily, Oliver knew nothing about gangrene.  All he knew was that he wanted the trap off his leg. He wanted out of the forest and into the arms of his buddies.    What was that?   He heard rustling in the brush. He smelled what he didn’t want to smell.  Coyotes were close.  But the worst had not yet happened.

To be continued………

It’s Not Even Summer Yet

 

I can’t believe all the things we have already done in the past few weeks and it’s not even Summer yet. ( I wrote this a few days ago when it wasn’t Summer yet.)  We have several family things and trips planned for this season

For the first time in years I have been swimming in the pool before July.  Usually June has cool nights and the pool was never warm enough for me, but because of very hot temperatures, it’s been really nice for swimming.   We have already had a couple of pool parties.

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I love having a pool full of kids and toys.  I hope I see this scene many times this Summer.

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I love seeing boys enjoying a Summer day, sitting on the swing on my shop porch.  My grandchildren are growing up much too fast.

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I love eating cold watermelon and freezing the rinds and feeding the to my chickens. How they love it.

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After eating, a quick ruffle of the feathers and on to other things.

I finally finished my shop. Except for some curtains and a few paint touch ups it’s done and I have been able to work on a quilt.  Right now everything in so neat and clean. Hope I can keep it that way.

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In my shop I am surrounded with things I love.

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I bought this pretty poster in Laurel, Mississippi on our last trip.  The town where Hometown is filmed.  One of David’s and my favorite fixer upper shows.

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I Mod Podged two and a half inch fabric squares all over this dress form.  I like how it turned out so I’m thinking of Mod Podging maps all over another one.

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A friend and a very talented lady who was also Nana to my Grandchildren, painted this straw hat for me years ago.  She has since passed away, but I think of her every  time I look at this hat.

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This hanging lamp has been in our kitchen, our dining room, my shop, taken down and stored in our basement and brought back into my shop once more where I hope it will stay.  I’ve had it for about thirty years.

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I have a little reading corner where I can read a book or look through quilt magazines and books for ideas for more quilts.  And yes, I have read all those books on the shelves.  People ask me that when they see my book shelves.  Now most of my books are on my Kindle, but I still read every single day.  My mother taught me the love of reading when I was a girl and for that I will always be grateful to her.  She was a voracious reader. She’d read James Michener books like eating candy.  Michener was not known for his thin books.

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I did this ceiling a few years back, painting quilt blocks on boards and David nailing them to the ceiling   The fun part was deciding what quilt patterns to use.

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My exercise bicycle which I don’t use as often as I should.  I have had it for a long time and we cannot find one just like it.  Before the mileage meter broke I had ridden over 25,000 miles on it. I keep it to remind me to exercise.

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I use these Edison type bulbs around the shop to give it a soft glow.  It’s taken months to get my shop painted and cleaned, but I am so happy with the results and I have so much more room. And I love my big cutting table that David built for me. One of a kind.  It can be moved easily and I can lay a big quilt on the top.

This  past weekend we took a trip to Squire Boone caverns in southern Indiana with our grandboys.

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They had never been in a cave before so this was quite the adventure for them. People ask if they are twins.  No, they are brothers born one year apart.

They thought the cave was awesome.

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I think it’s pretty awesome too. To think that water helped form all these formations.  A constant drip, drip, drip and in several years you get a stalagtite or a stalagmite.

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Sometimes you even get fried eggs!

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Squire Boone, Daniel Boone’s younger brother, owned the land this cave was found on and he loved exploring it and they buried his bones here.

It was a fun day, but very hot. Almost 100 degrees.  The boys mined for gemstones and got some things at the gift shop and we decided to leave and get dinner.   We stopped at Frisches and they both ate a big meal.

So on the way home this is what happened.

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Completely wiped out with all they had done.  They slept almost all the way home.  The only thing was, they got a nap and were well rested and ready to go again while Grandma and Grandpa were tired and ready for a nap.  We swam all evening, watched a movie.

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Ready for church Sunday morning.   They were up with the chickens.

It was a fun weekend ending with another pool party and an impromptu birthday celebration for a new teen who turned thirteen who was visiting us.  His cake was made of Twinkies and we ate vanilla and chocolate mint chip ice cream.

I will end this post with a story of life and death.  What happened right before my eyes on our front porch.

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A battle between a big spider and a stink bug.  I was rooting for the spider.

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I don’t think the stink bug had a chance.  The spider wanted its meal too much to let go.  Nature can be cruel sometimes, but that’s the way it is.

Here’s to caves, little boys and Summer days.  Bye.

 

 

JUNE!!

June is busting out all over.  I remember when I was a girl on a beautiful June day walking down the gravel road to my older sister’s house, singing the song from the musical, State Fair, June Is Busting Out All Over.   I use to know all the words.   But I had a song in my heart, was free as a bird and happy to be going to my sister’s house.  She was like a second mother to me being eleven years older.   School was out until September. A long, lazy, fun filled Summer lay ahead on the farm.  After breakfast and my chores were done, I had the whole day to wander the farm, play with the animals and lay for hours on the front porch swing reading books from the library. I was in 4-H which kept me busy, too, sewing, embroidering and baking cakes or yeast rolls.

Now that I am retired from any outside job, there are days when I get the same feeling of freedom.  I can choose whatever I want to do and I’m telling you, it is a grand feeling. I hope all of you get to feel that way one day.  I could burst into song right now!

We had a graduation a week ago. Our oldest grandchild and only granddaughter graduated from high school.  It just seems like only yesterday I was all excited about her being born and driving up to Chicago to see her for the very first time.  I was in love.  She has been the most wonderful granddaughter a grandmother could have. We are so proud of her.

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She is cute, funny, smart and full of life.  She has a bright future ahead of her.

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Here she is going up to get her diploma.

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Here she is with her dad who is VERY happy she has college practically paid for already.  She has worked hard for this.

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The choir held hands as they sang. It was very touching. The kids in this school are extremely close.  There is no bullying there and everyone is treated with respect.   When you enter that school, you can feel the goodness there. I can’t explain it, but when a school is Christ centered, it just feels differently.  Most schools use to be Christ centered until God was taken out of schools.  Sad.

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I would recommend this school to anyone who wants their child to get a well rounded education.  Most of the graduates are either going to college or the military.

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My grandson.  He’s growing up, too.

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And his older brother. He graduates in two years.    I still am not use to the fact he is driving.

The next day they had a party and it was fun.  There was so much food and almost all of it was eaten. I think about one hundred people came through the house that day.  I made a big pot of macaroni and cheese and had to make another one.

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The tables were decorated with books as our granddaughter is a bookworm and has had a book published.

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Lots of pictures of her were on the walls.

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She displayed some of her artwork.

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Her dad, who is an Indiana University graduate wore this shirt……

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He said he never thought he would ever wear a shirt with Purdue on it. His brother went to Purdue and there was always a competition going on there.  Never say you will never do something because you will find yourself doing it!

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I made her this quilt. This was taken in my house. See that floral chair? That’s my new Lazyboy  I got for Mother’s Day.   The pattern on it is called Van Gogh so now I can say I have a Van Gogh in my house!

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I made this quilt this past Winter.  I was so afraid I wouldn’t get it done in time, but it had been completed for a long time only I had not made a label for it. So the week before graduation I finally got the label made.

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I try to label all my quilts.  I find it sad to find an old quilt with no name on it. I always wonder about the women who have made some of my quilts that I have purchased at sales.   I have so many and don’t have a clue who made them or when.

It was a fun weekend but we were both exhausted when we got home.

Yesterday we went to a textile fair not far from home.

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There were booths and several buildings at the fair ground with yarns and other textiles for sale.  I was in heaven. This particular booth had the best selection of feed sack material I have ever seen and why I didn’t buy any, I don’t know.  But I can see why women back in the thirties and forties made clothes out of feed sacks. They are very colorful.  Many florals that would have made pretty dresses.

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This lady had a camper full of yarn and yes, I did buy some.   Traveling the country with yarn in the back of your camper sounds like a great thing to me.

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There were sheep there. Some man was walking around a little, black sheep, but I didn’t get a picture of it. Do any of you remember the Disney movie back in the fifties called So Dear To My Heart?  It was about a little boy who raised a black lamb and all the trouble the lamb got into with the boy’s grandmother and how he showed it at the county fair. It was my favorite movie when I was a girl.  The little boy got to see the racehorse, Dan Patch, taken off a train for exercise.  As a girl who was mad about horses, I loved this scene in the movie.  Dan Patch is mentioned in the musical, The Music Man when  Professor Hill says, “want to see some stuck up jockey boy sitting on Dan Patch, make your blood boil?”

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There were llamas too.

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Any animal that provides wool for yarn was there. There were angora rabbits too.  They had the most beautiful fur.

There was one booth where young girls were learning to card wool and spin it into yarn. What a wonderful thing to learn while you are young.   One girl was explaining the process to me and she was so well informed and so mature acting.   Conner Prairie, a pioneer village which is based on the  people and times of the year 1806, sponsors this and it truly is a way to keep the old arts going.

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Even some of the bags had sheep on them.  And I bought several skeins of yarn.

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The lady selling this yarn had a sock knit up with it and it was so pretty I had to buy some.

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One of my grandsons said he wanted me to knit him blue and black socks so this should fit the bill.

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I cannot wait to knit this up.

On the way home we stopped at an antique store called Vic’s just north of where we live. We are looking for an old floor lamp.   We got one there a few years ago, but I knocked it over and ruined the lampshade.  We were also looking for old lampshades, but I found this instead.

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An old tablecloth, but I am either going to make curtains with it or a Summer skirt.  It is so soft and the colors are so pretty.

We have several things planned this Summer since it’s our fiftieth wedding anniversary year.  Next trip will be to some caves and a pioneer village with our grandsons.

Here’s to high school graduates and wonderful fairs.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

Summer Daze

Okay, I know it’s not quite Summer yet, but it sure feels like it with the heat and humidity.  Today was a picture perfect day with hardly a cloud in the blue, blue sky.  The seasons are running together now for me. I no sooner get ready for one season then it is another one and so on and so on. This is my favorite time of year when the birds are building their nests and raising their families. David and I watched a daddy bird feed one of his babies in our bird feeder today.  There are so many birds. Cardinals, nuthatches, chickadees, Titmice, sparrows, cowbirds, blue jays,( who are nasty critters, I must say) starlings,who lay blue eggs I learned this Spring, purple finches and some I don’t know what they are called.  But the feeder is constantly busy. I saw a humming bird also. They have been very secretive about coming to the feeder and I can never catch them.

The garden just burst into bloom. When they say something bursts into bloom it’s true.  One day nothing and the next day flowers everywhere. If you don’t believe in miracles, go out into a garden and you will see so many all around you. I always wonder how a tree knows when it is time to unfurl it’s leaves. When a daffodil knows to pop its head out of the ground.  Who tells the birds when to fly north. I know, but do you?    It’s all perfectly miraculous.  It’s going on all around us every single day and most of us are blind to it.   That is why it says in the Bible, be still and know that I am God.  Just sit quietly in a garden for a while and if you don’t believe there is a greater Being making all this happen, I don’t know what to tell you.  I believe and I see it every day.

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Bursts. See.

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The peony is one of my top five favorite flowers. I have a lot of them in my garden and I just ordered seven more to be planted this Autumn.

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I want to just stop and look and look at these, but there is work to do.

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But then, there are these beauties. The Iris. On my top five list.  They multiply and you don’t have to do a single thing to make it happen.

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I never have enough flowers, but I am running out of room.

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My daughter and son-in-law gave me this for Mother’s Day.  I love it. But I am not very good with hanging baskets so I hope I can keep this as beautiful as it is now.  By the way.  I had a very nice Mother’s day.  My grandsons learned to play Chinese checkers the last time they were here so they wanted us all to play.  Six people playing Chinese checkers takes a long time. Especially when some people refuse to move!  But it was fun. We played on the Chinese checkerboard I received for Christmas one year when I was a little girl.

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This is not David’s grandmother’s clematis.  This is one we transplanted here years ago and it has really taken off.  It’s what I see from my backdoor.

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Just gorgeous.

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And Molly Marshmallow has to get into the picture. I love this dog. So much.

I always say the back yard is the dogs’ garden because I don’t get all upset if they dig something up or lay smack dab in the middle of a flower bed.

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Here is Belle demonstrating her gardening capabilities.  Which pretty much amounts to snooping, sniffing, pooping and digging. But that’s okay.

I have managed to complete one small quilt in the midst of all the gardening and painting my shop.   It’s another one from Kathleen Tracy’s book.

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It’s nice to do a small project once in a while where you can see the results so much faster.

And I am nearly finished with this quilt.

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I hand quilted it instead of on the machine and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

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I still have the border to quilt and the binding to put on.  I already have another quilt I am planning to hand quilt on my mind.  It is slightly bigger. It fits the top of the table David is making me.

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Here’s the table on its side so that he can screw the bottom shelf on.

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And here it is on its feet.  The top still needs staining and polyurethaned but it’s almost there. You can see I still do not have the floor completely painted. Trying to think what I am going to do with the grandchildren’s handprints and pictures they painted on the floor years ago. I am keeping them for sure.   I love this table. We got the idea for it at the Indiana Home Show a couple of years back where I saw a kitchen island that looked like this and I loved it.  The price for the kitchen island?  Ten thousand dollars!  The price of this table with lumber, stain, screws and casters?  Under $500 which is still not cheap, but a whole lot cheaper than the one we saw at the home show.   It will last my lifetime and one of the kids will inherit it if they want it, but they will have to have a big place to put it as it’s huge.   I can see myself this Winter cutting out quilts and laying quilts on this table to pin before I quilt them. And there is so much storage underneath. I am going to buy some baskets to hold projects I am working on.  Thank you, David.  I love you.

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I have my mother’s Singer sewing machine. The machine I learned to sew upon. When my mother got this machine, it was the newest one out and she was so proud of it. David, who has worked on many sewing machines in his life says this is the best sewing machine Singer ever put out with metal gears.  So many of the sewing machines today have plastic gears. And talking about sewing machines.  I came in my shop with wet Crocs and feet the other day and sat down to piece a quilt square and got shocked.   I blamed the machine and immediately began to look for a new sewing machine online. David says it’s because I had wet bare feet that I was shocked, but I have talked myself into a new machine.  A heavy duty quilting machine.    I have worn out a few machines and mine are all over twenty years old with a lot of miles on them so I am getting a new machine.  But no more sewing with wet bare feet!

 

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This little girl is graduating from high school this weekend. I can hardly believe it. I remember when this picture was taken.  My son and daughter-in-law lived in Chicago and both her grandmas got to go with her mother and her to get her pictures taken. It was so much fun and we grandmas watched all gaga over this precious little baby that had come into our lives. Now she is all grown up and ready to meet the world.   I’m still gaga over her and so very proud.

Here’s to wonderful granddaughters, new sewing tables and learning NOT to sew in wet, bare feet. Bye.

 

 

 

 

Playing Catch Up

I told David we were never going away for a vacation in the Spring ever again. Too much is going on around here and I don’t want to miss it. Plus, it’s planting time and so many things to do around the yard to get it ready for Summer. Right now our yard looks like a jungle because the lawn mower man hasn’t come yet. Well, I didn’t get him called soon enough.  I am amazed how quickly our lawn has grown in one week.  And I don’t mow anymore.  That’s one job I am more than happy to pay for.

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I didn’t miss any of the Spring blossoms. Here is the crabapple tree in all its glory.

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The pink flowering almond outdid itself.  One winter the rabbits ate this clear to the ground so we had to put a fence around it. Now it’s too big for the rabbits to care to munch on it.

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To look at my garden you would never know I love the color pink.

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Even my painted garden has pink in it. I made a trip to one of my favorite garden shops and bought some geraniums in different hues of pink and planted them in eight planters this morning.  I have a few flower seeds to plant and some tomatoes and pumpkins and then I will be finished with the planting this year.

We had a little surprise when we returned home from Alabama.  A little furry surprise. We were going out the door to church the Sunday after we got back and I thought I saw a kitten run under our porch.  When we got home, David staked out a place to watch and before long he saw four little kittens.   Then as he watched longer, he saw there were five!  Five kittens born under our front porch and we didn’t even know it. Their mother is a feral cat that runs around in our neighborhood. David got out the animal trap we had bought  to catch a ground hog that had taken up residency under our porch. We caught a possum that time. Soon he had caught mama cat and four of her babies.  The fifth one, that looked like a Siamese cat, took longer.  It took a couple of days.

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This is mama, but she is vicious.  David had a tangle with her and she bit him five times through leather gloves and scratched him all up his legs.   I didn’t see it happen and he said I wouldn’t have wanted to.

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One long haired and two black and white, one tabby and the Siamese looking one.  Strange how so many different kittens can come from one mama.  So cute, but so wild.

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Such cute faces with a look of danger in their eyes.

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This black and white one was my favorite.  In a week they were litter trained, eating kitten kibble and drinking from a bowl and I found homes for every one of them. The mother is still running loose.   I am hoping she finds a new place for her next litter or I will be calling animal control which I really don’t want to do.

Work is progressing on my shop. I have almost all the painting done now. Woohoo!  That was a chore. I did it all with a paint brush, wall and floor.  I still have a bit of the floor to complete. Meanwhile, David is working on my new cutting table.

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It will be six by six feet, made of heavy wood and on heavy casters so that I can roll it anywhere in my shop I want.  If that isn’t love for him to do this for me, I don’t know what is.  I don’t need any boxes of candy or flowers.  This does it for me.

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And this is what I do in my shop. Sew and make quilts.  These are two I have pieced in the last few weeks.  And like all quilters, I am already thinking of my next one.

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From Kathleen Tracy’s book.  I love this quilt.

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And part of the fun in making a quilt is picking out the fabrics.  Here are a few I plan to use in my next one.

David’s grandmother had a clematis in her garden that was so pretty. She had it for as long as I could remember.  She babied that clematis and it was her pride and joy.  When her house was going to be sold, David and I rescued Grandma’s clematis and brought it home with us and planted it behind our garage, which is now my shop.  It bloomed there, but the last few years it hasn’t seemed happy there so this year we decided to transplant it to a more favorable place. At least I hope it will be.

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David worked very carefully to get it dug and to trim the fencing away from it that it had grown on.   We think we found some new little clematises beside it so I planted them in pots to see how they would do.   They might just be weeds, too!

It now sits in my kitchen garden where it can spread its roots and hopefully grow bigger and have more flowers on it in the future.  If any of our kids are reading this, we will Grandma Henley’s clematis to you.   It’s at least fifty years old.

Meanwhile other bushes are bursting at the seams.

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The Spirea always looks pretty.

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And another transplant from Grandma’s garden. A snowball bush. This one has become quite big and is full of blooms.  I’ve gotten two more transplants from this one bush.  It brings back fond memories of being in Grandma’s garden.  She was the only Grandma I really knew as my grandmothers had passed before I knew them  or they were not well while I was growing up.  My one grandma lived with us for a while and did teach me how to make good pie crust.   But we never talked.  Isn’t that strange?   She didn’t talk to anyone.

I try not to get hooked on movies during the day, but last Saturday one of my favorite movies was on.  Giant.  Starring Rock Hudson and Elizabeth Taylor.

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Both were in their prime.  I really believe Elizabeth Taylor was the most beautiful women in her time.  She had those violet eyes and shiny black hair.  Giant is about a Texas cattle baron and his family. It’s about women’s rights and the prejudices of the time, cowboys and finding oil and becoming rich off it and the disparity between people,  with horses and cattle and bucking broncos all thrown into the mix.   It’s a long movie so I had to tape it to finish it later, but I love it and will watch it again.  James Dean, who comes from my state, was also in the movie as a nemesis for Rock Hudson’s character.  He died in a car accident not long after this movie was made.  He was the stuff of legends.

The cinematography was wonderful.

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It made the old west come alive.    So much of the west is gone now.  Overrun with housing developments and ranchettes and shopping malls, but there are still a few places off the beaten path where you can still see what it use to be like.

And because this has been a hodgepodge  of things I will show you some lipsticks I purchased recently. Found the company on Facebook. Lipstick for women over forty.   Which I have been for some time.

 

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I don’t own any stock in the company or anything. Just like to share when I find a product I like.   I got a set of lipsticks and have tried them all and love them all.   They come in the cutest containers.  The lipsticks are not suppose to feather into the wrinkles around your mouth like some lipsticks do.    I’m still testing them, but so far I have been very happy with the product.   I usually wear Covergirl, but their ads have become kind of freaky and that turns me off a product. Just telling you the truth. I also like Maybelline lipsticks.  These new ones may become my favorites.

So that has been the first week back from vacation.  There’s a graduation coming up. Our first grandchild finishing high school and has her college all picked.  Wow, does time fly.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Still Traveling, But There’s No Place Like Home

One of the last things we did on Dauphin island was tour the fort that was on its Eastern most end.   This fort was here long before civilization crowded in.  The men had no stores from which to buy their food, so they depended on the oysters, fish and alligators for their meals.  It must have been a long, lonely tour of duty as there was not much to do but guard the coast, eat, sleep and find food each day.   Their sleeping arrangements were not the best either.

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Hopefully feather mattresses were put on these narrow beds.

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Or maybe they just laid down on this and covered up with a thin blanket.

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This must have been an officer’s room as he had the fortune to have a fireplace to keep him warm at night.

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There were many hand written letters home to family and they typed them up so we could read them as many of the words were hard to read and many were misspelled.   Notice this guy received some shirts from his wife, but the wristbands were too tight!  There were many  letters like this and I could have stayed and read them all, but we had more to see.

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Another military man looking at quarters in which he is very happy he was never quartered.   But he had to sleep out in the woods a lot so it wasn’t much better.  He didn’t have to hunt for food, though.

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This is another place I wish we could have stayed longer, but we had a ferry to catch.

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Out to sea.

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Past pelicans and seagulls resting on rocks in the bay.

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Past oil rigs that looked somewhat alien in this scenery.

We were driving to Destin, Florida in hopes of spending a day at the beach before we headed north, but near Fort Walton our car starting bucking like a horse in a rodeo.  It would run well for a while until we stopped at a light and starting up, it would start bucking again.  Thankfully, we made it to our motel without hitting one red light after I said a prayer.   We found a repair shop and took it in.  Of course they could find nothing wrong. “Bring it back in in the morning,” They said so we did. David left the car running so the repairman could witness what was happening.  It was a relatively simple fix, but we missed our beach time. So on north we drove.

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This will mean nothing to anyone but those who attend my church.  Our pastor talks about how he was saved in Piney Grove Baptist Church and wouldn’t you know it. We drove right past it!  I had to get a picture. There was a man there we hoped knew Brother Bailey, but he was just visiting the cemetery there and didn’t know him.

Then we found this wonderful museum of Alabama history.

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I can’t even begin to show you all the pictures I took and how much was in this little museum, but it was wonderful.

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Rooms set up to look like long ago.

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So many antique quilts.  Many I didn’t recognize the pattern.

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Set up for a quilting bee but…..

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The quilters were on break.

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This hat and purse were made from corn husks.

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An old baby bed.  Kept the mosquitoes and flies off baby.

Besides the museum. there were buildings to see.

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A general store that was full of old general store stuff.

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A church heated by an old cast iron stove.

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Lit by kerosene lamps. I told David it would be wonderful to decorate this church for Christmas with a tree and holly and have the lamps lit, the stove heating the room and having a church service at night. It would be magical.

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And Pastor David said, “Yes, that would be nice.”

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There was an old chicken house, but no chickens.

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A covered bridge and several other houses to see.   And then it was time to move on.

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Through more little southern towns with beautiful houses with big front porches.

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Until we came to another town where we found this park.  Another place off the beaten path.  Not a tourist trap, but well worth seeing.

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Over a bridge…

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To a beautiful falls.  It was roaring like Niagra.

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History tells us that an Indian maiden, betrothed to a man she did not want to marry because she was in love with another, jumped to her death at these falls.  No woman should ever have to marry someone she is not madly in love with.

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I would have probably done the same thing if I were being forced to marry someone I did not love.

Back on the road again and what do I see ahead???????

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We passed it, David, go back!

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I can’t believe it. It’s a Haunted Chicken House!  Opens in October.  Road trip!!

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So many cars with chickens on the top.  There was a big building there where the haunted part was, but I was loving seeing all these cars with the chickens.  So funny.   And I can’t even tell you what it’s near so we probably could never find it again.

Many times serendipitous things happen to us. Like when David missed his turn in a town and right at that very moment when he knew he had missed it, we saw to our left a part.  This park had log cabins on its grounds and a walking path.  “Let’s go in!”  And we did.  I walked  and looked at all there was to see.

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A bridge to walk and fountains.

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A log cabin with plaques of “dead mothers,”  There were a lot of them.

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Another old cabin. I love cabins.  I would love to live in one.

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There was a little free lending library there where you could take a book and leave one.  There was a book I really wanted to take, but I didn’t have one to leave so I passed it by.   The paths in the park wove round and round and it really was so easy to walk a mile without even thinking about it.  I walked around for quite a while an met this man walking his macaw.

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He told me he walks it every day.  His name is Bobby.  The macaw, that is.  This guy is an old Navy man.    That bird was so tame, it just walked on his arm and sometimes over his shoulders and back to the other arm and he talked as it did it like it was the most normal thing in the world. You meet the nicest people and their birds while walking in a park!

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Coming through Kentucky, we stopped at this Lincoln memorial.  There are exactly 56 steps up to the memorial.  The age President Lincoln was when he was assassinated.   So young.

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This log cabin was inside the memorial. At one time it was believed the Lincolns lived in this cabin, but in recent years and with testing of the logs, they learned the cabin was too new to be of that time.  So it’s kept as a memory of log cabins.

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We walked this wooden walkway back down.

There was  a little museum where we watched a movie about Lincoln’s life.  It told that although we have learned that Abraham Lincoln’s family was very poor, they were actually middle class and very probably upper middle class at that time in history as they had been able to buy a farm.  Sadly that farm was lost because the deal had not been done legally by the seller.   They bought another farm and it was lost too.  Evidently Abe’s father wasn’t too good at making deals.

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I found this picture of Lincoln made from pennies very interesting.

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The Lincolns probably did get water from a spring here on the property.

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Then it was time to get home driving through rain over the Ohio River in Louisville.

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We are in Indiana!  Yay!

And back to home sweet home.

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To one of the prettiest gardens I’ve seen except for Bellingrath Gardens.   And I didn’t miss any of the blooms.

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The magnolias were magnificent.

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The daffodils had not faded.

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The azalea was as pretty as any I had seen down south.

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And the redbud was bursting with bloom.  It was good to be home.

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And David was so glad to get home because he was starting to look like that old man in “Up.”   Sorry I don’t know how to turn this picture, so lay on your side and look at it.  We have laughed so hard at this.   He did this playing with his cellphone one night.

Here’s to traveling and all the sights we’ve seen. Bye.

Traveling South Part II

So, on we drove deeper into the south.  To places that had seen the ravages of the Civil War which was not civil at all.   Thankfully, many of the little towns were bypassed and were not destroyed by the Union soldiers.

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One little town was welcoming Spring. It seems Spring was late almost everywhere this year.

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Over tall bridges over rivers running throughout our country.

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Until off in the distance we saw another bridge we were going to cross onto an island.

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We are getting closer.

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Ocean on either side of us.

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Up and over and we landed safely on the other side!

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Here we were in Dauphin Island, Alabama.  I had never heard of this island until a few weeks ago when David and I were discussing where we were going on our road trip.   He asked me if I wanted to go to dolphin island. “Dolphin Island!”   “No, it’s spelled D-a-u-p-h-I-n Island.  We can drive to it.”  “Okay,” I said and now here we were.  I did not get a picture of the motel in which we stayed. It was called Gulf Breeze Motel and was your quintessential island home away from home. Painted an ocean blue and white on the outside.   The bed was covered with a comforter with shells and fish on it. The dresser had shell carvings on its front.  Island birds and animals pictures were on the walls.  The windows were open with the ocean breezes blowing in. It was indeed magical.  Right across the road was the beach, but would you believe, we never got to that beach.  Not once.  But we did get to a beach. One less traveled.  One you had to walk a two mile round trip to get to.

The first day I made new friends.

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Just a few feet from our motel’s front door was a little pier and these guys were gathered there.  I just happened to have some crackers in the car and they loved them. And they called their friends.

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Soon we had several seagulls flying around us.

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They posed for us.  Seagulls are one of my top five favorite birds. They are really what I miss the most about the beach.

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On an island? There has to be a flamingo somewhere.

We wanted to go to the beach and we were told if we parked at a bird sanctuary on the island we could walk to the beach.  We weren’t told it was a two mile round trip, but it was worth it.  Although we heard not one bird while walking through the bird sanctuary we did enjoy the peacefulness of it and we seemed to be the only people there.  When we finally got to the beach, it was almost empty.  David played in the water and I laid on the sand and listened to the ocean.  We walked a way down the beach and saw a dead crab, a child’s shovel and a few shells.  Away out in the distance we could see oil rigs.  Oil rigs surround the island.   It was so wonderful. Not the oil rigs, just being at the beach with the sun and the sound of the waves.  I have always been in awe of the ocean.  But we are northerners with very white skin and soon we were both showing a little redness and remembering horrible burns we got years ago on a South Carolina beach, we decided to head back.

The second day on the island we left the island and drove a few miles north of it to a wonderful place called Bellingrath Gardens.

Heading there we got on this road.

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Surely these gardens were not on this road.  Miss Garmin!!!!

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All we saw on this road was this fancy rooster who acted like he very seldom saw other humans except his own.  The music from Deliverance was running in my head at this point.

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And David would NEVER admit he was lost. Until we came to a dead end and had to turn around.   But we did find the garden so all was well.

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Land purchased by a Coca Cola CEO in the 1930’s held only an old fishing shack, but he and his wife built a magnificent house and planted wonderful gardens on 65 acres and opened the gardens to the public.  The gardens were opened to the public off and on until Mr. Bellingrath died in the 1950’s and has been open to the public ever since. What a gift they have given to all of us. For a fee you can tour their house(we didn’t because we knew it would take us all day to see the gardens even though we were told it all could be seen in a couple of hours) and tour the gardens spread out along the Fowl River.  Here are some of the flowers we saw….

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These look like cyclamen, but I am not sure. I was entranced by them because I have never seen flowers like this.  So sweet.

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Orchids in the green house.

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Even pineapples were growing.

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Fountains all around.

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The smell of roses filled the air.

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A little mermaid.

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More live oaks dripping with Spanish moss.  That always says the south to me.  Always.

Mrs. Bellingrath was a woman of faith and had a chapel built on the property.  Weddings are sometimes held there.  The windows were exquisite.

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Everywhere you looked there was eye candy.

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The house was indeed grand and overlooked the river.  But it took us hours to go through the gardens.  I’m not done yet.

There was a wooden walkway you could walk around an estuary.  Of course it took us a while to walk it as we had to look at everything.

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We were surrounded by scenes like this.

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A lookout built above the estuary.

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Lots of fish. This guy looks about right for frying up in a skillet!

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And look at the claws on this guy.

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Bamboo grew abundantly.

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Two old lions making friends.

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Trumpet flowers falling on my head!

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David called this the Medusa log.  Looks like Medusa’s head, doesn’t it?

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We saw this plaque on the way out.

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It’s Rebekah at the well giving water to a servant sent to find a wife for Isaac.    It’s a story in the book of Genesis.  Another of Mrs. Bellingrath’s homages to scriptures.

It was a totally wonderful day and it did take us hours to go through the gardens.  Everywhere there were people working on the gardens planting new flowers and mulching. It’s a never ending job.  The only part I found that seemed to not belong was an Asian garden. I don’t think it’s original to the gardens. It was poorly kept and had very few if any flowers. I don’t know if it was under construction or something or was not as popular as all the rest.  It just didn’t fit in.  But all in all, if you are ever in this part of the country, Bellingrath gardens is really worth seeing.

We went through the gift shop and David bought me the prettiest umbrella.  I had been complaining to him a while back when it was raining, that I could never seem to find an umbrella.  Now I have one of my own.

On our way back to the motel we passed this.

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An old fashioned tent revival.  I would have liked to have gone, but David was tired so we passed on by.  Next, we visit a Civil War fort and head back north. Bye.

 

 

 

 

Traveling South Part I

David and I love to travel.  We have been in every state in our country except for Hawaii for David and Hawaii and Rhode Island for me.  Some of the states we have visited several times. We love the west.  But we love the south, north and east also.  It was hard deciding where to go this year. Since we have not spent a lot of time in Mississippi except the time when my brother and his family lived there, we decided to travel that state to the Gulf.  We also planned a stop in a town where one of our favorite television shows is filmed.

I was having mixed feelings about leaving my pets this time as our favorite pet sitters have closed their business.  They are older than us, so I was not surprised that they had decided to do so, but I was worried at finding a new pet sitter. Then someone suggested a girl who attends our church so I called her and she came and visited and I at once felt calm about leaving my dogs and chickens with her.  The dogs loved her the first time they met her.  As dogs are very good judges of people, I knew she would be very good to them. She is a really sweet girl and very good with animals as she works at a dog daycare where I plan to take Molly this Summer for some play with other dogs as Belle would rather sleep than play.

So we left and I actually cried a little at leaving them and all the flowers that were in bloom around our house.  Crazy, isn’t it?

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The daffodils and magnolias were blooming and here is my crab apple I really hope won’t bloom and be gone before we get back as I wait for it every year.

So off we set.

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Down the road.

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Through little Indiana towns.

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Over the bridge over the Ohio River.

And south.

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We stop at little out of the way places. Not a big tourist site, but interesting.

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A park where we stretched our legs.   Walking around the paths twice was a quarter of a mile. Yes, I am counting my steps again.

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This old house was next to the bridge park and there were feral cats coming in and out of it.  I think they have taken it over.

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There is something about old, abandoned houses that interest me.  I often tell David if I were a billionaire I would travel the country and restore these old houses to their former grandeur so people could again live in them.  What history would this old house tell?

We passed many old houses the first day as we traveled further and further south.

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Wouldn’t this house be beautiful if repaired and brought back to life?  Now a farmer keeps his tractor parked where the cars use to park.  I could see me having a sewing room in that upstairs room with the big windows.

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There are still a few log cabins around. When I was a girl, there were two log cabins near my home. My brothers and I use to have walnut fights in one of them.  Those cabins are long gone.  It appears someone is trying to preserve this one with a new metal roof on the porch.

 

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You don’t see these houses driving the interstate.  This one must have housed a large family at one time. I think of the Waltons looking at it.

Besides houses the trees and flowers were in bloom everywhere the farther south we got.

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This is what my crabapple looks like every Spring.  At least I got to see a flowering crabapple this year.

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Beautiful blooms everywhere.

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Then, we noticed something strange ahead.

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I believe they have landed!   Don’t know what this was.  But it looks alien.

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I always think of the south when I see azaleas.  Even the most humble home looks wonderful with azaleas blooming in the yard.

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Another park where I walked in a wonderful southern town with lots of old houses.

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They really knew how to build them.  Many houses built today are all pretty generic.

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This house looked like a castle.

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David was trying to get out of all the pictures I was taking!

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Big front porches where one could sit and rock and sip sweet tea.

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I fell in love with this little house and it had a name.

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If I were a little old lady(well, I kind of am) and didn’t have a husband(which I don’t want to happen), I would live in a little pink house like this with a dog at my feet and a quilt to work on in my hands.  I would invite people in for sweet tea and cookies.

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I love the ingenuity of people. Who thinks of planting flowers in an old boat, but it works.

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A pumpkin colored house.  We are getting our house repainted in a year or two.  Think this would be a good color!

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Some of the houses had little carriage houses in the back converted to something else.

Then we got to one of our destinations.

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Down tree covered streets with large live oaks covering them. Past beautiful parks. This town had so many parks.

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Live oaks, a tree that is everywhere in the south.  Thankfully, many have been allowed to grow to this size.  Many dripping with Spanish moss.

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Roses blooming in profusion.  Then we reached our destination.

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We were in Laurel, Mississippi.  The site of the home renovation show Home Town. This is Ben and Erin Napier’s mercantile.  Of course I bought a few things here. It was a cute little store.  I was hoping maybe one of them would show up, but I am sure they have better things to do.

So on south we went.  I will write more soon. Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

Easter Celebration and a Tutorial

Can’t believe Easter was just last Sunday.   It’s one of my favorite holidays for many reasons. For one, it’s the happiest day for Christians all around the world who celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ who was beat, tortured and hung on the cross on Friday and on the third day he arose.  He took every last one of our sins upon himself. Only God could do that.   Because of Jesus, I can face every day knowing that He lives and lives through me.  One day I will see His face.

The other reason I love Easter is because of the fun things we do with out grandchildren.  We always have an egg hunt. This year two of our grandchildren were in California with their daddy and our granddaughter was in Florida with friends.  As our grandchildren grow older, their lives get busier and we see less of them which makes me sad, but that is the way of life.  But we had two grandboys and our son’s girlfriend’s son here to hunt eggs so it was fun. David and I prepared 216 eggs.  Seventy-five of them had little pieces of paper in them with dollar signs on them. Those who found those got a dollar for each one.  Dangling that carrot in front of young boys gives them a big incentive to hunt the eggs.  We hid some in he house and in my shop because we were expecting rain and when it didn’t rain, we hid more outdoors.

The hunt was a great success and each boy got a wad of dollar bills. All but two of the eggs were found. I suppose I will run across them sometime just like I do every year.

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I cut some of the daffodils from my garden for the table.  I had fun dyeing those eggs using just food coloring water and vinegar.

We had a nice dinner and conversation as we ate. In the course of talking we got to laughing about the Debbie Downer character who was on Saturday Night Live years ago.  Debbie Downer always found something pessimistic to say when her friends were discussing something.  Every time she said something pessimistic, the music would go Wa-wa-wa.   It was really funny.  Well, we were discussing whether we were getting any eggs and I mentioned one of our hens had died of old age this week and my son went “Wa-wa-wa,”  and we all started laughing. Then I tried to think of pessimistic things to interject in the conversation just to get to say it.  We were all laughing so hard.  I guess you had to be there, but if you have ever seen that sketch on SNL you know what I am talking about.

This week besides painting in my shop, something that seems to go on and on, I did manage to do a little quilt making.  And by little I mean the quilts are little.

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I have been working on this quilt.  Orange peel.

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Kathleen Tracy made this quilt. Now I have made orange peel blocks before and the instructions for them are in this book, but I make mine a little differently so as to get uniform orange peels.  Here is how I do it.

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Take one small piece of fabric.

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Draw the orange peel shapes on freezer paper.  Cut them out.

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Iron one on each piece of fabric you are using for all the orange peels. I used 64 different colors of fabric to make it more patchwork looking.

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Next, iron in the ends.

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Press all around the orange peel shape. Don’t burn your fingers!

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Remove the parchment paper.

Then I go one extra step some people don’t do.

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I baste around the orange peel.

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Pin it on your square.  Sew around it with tiny stitches.  Do this 64 times and you will have enough little blocks to make this particular quilt.

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I must admit it is quite habit forming making these blocks.  I so enjoyed stitching each different orange peel on its block.  I have them sewn together, but I will show you that in another post.

We are expecting yet another round of snow tonight.   I’m so ready for warm weather and sunshine.   We were going to go to the Indianapolis Zoo Saturday, but that’s been cancelled.   We will get to the zoo sometime this year.  Maybe even go to the Cincinnati Zoo.

Here’s to Spring, wherever she is and may she get here before Summer. Bye.