Spring, I Hardly knew Ye

My very favorite months of the year, March, April and May are coming to an end. May is half over already and I can hardly stand it.   It does cross my mind sometimes just how many more March, April and Mays I have left to see in this world.   I have always loved Spring in all its beauty and I never feel like it lasts long enough.

The Snowball bush outside our back door has reached its peak and is beginning to fade.

We got this from a start of David’s Grandmothers’ Snowball bush that was in her backyard and was huge.   Ours is getting pretty big, but still needs to grow some to get as big as hers was.  I wonder if that bush is still there.

We had to move this clematis that was by our back deck as we are getting a new screened in back porch built, and were afraid it would get destroyed by the builders. You get big men in big shoes clomping around a garden and the flowers cringe and so do I.  There is a Mama Robin who built her nest in a crook of the porch on my shop and every time someone goes out the back door, she flies away and chitters and hops around in distress.  She’s been doing a lot of that lately with all the men working right beside her. I hope those eggs get hatched, but I’m worried she has been off them too much.

This is my little garden right by the back deck where the new porch is going.

Finally after all the cold weather, my garden burst into bloom, overnight, it seems like.

We’ve done a little traveling and a little visiting.

Visited my sister who I haven’t seen in almost a year which is too long. We always are glad to see each other.   She was like a second mother to me when I was growing up.  My mother kind of let her take care of me and when she got married, it just about killed me because we shared a bedroom and she was always around from the time I was born.  I cried for a week when she left to start her own home, but I did visit her and her husband a lot and babysat their children years later.

My sister’s husband who has been like a brother to me.  He’s eighty years old and still raises a large garden big enough to feed a small town. He had a kidney removed a few years back and could not have a garden that year and it was hard on him.  But he’s been making up for it.   I hope he has many more years to raise his garden.

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They brought out this quilt I made for a prize at a family reunion years ago. I made a larger version of it that people signed and put their birthdates on.  My sister won this quilt and there was no shenanigans going on for her to win it. We had a young child pick out the winning name and it was hers!   The reunion is called the Ridenour reunion for all descendants of my grandparents and there are a lot of us.

On the back of the quilt I put a label and these pictures of my grandma and grandpa Ridenour.

My grandpa was a dapper fellow in this picture.  I can see why my grandma fell for him.

And my grandmother was beautiful with big, brown eyes and long hair done up on the top of her head. She and my grandpa went on to have four daughters and all of them are gone now, but the youngest one.

Easter came and went so quickly even though it was late this year.  We had our annual Easter egg hunt and the kids got money for certain eggs they found.

Here’s Grandpa counting the eggs to see how many dollars someone gets.  It’s always exciting for the kids.

When we visited my sister, we also took a trip to the city where we use to live before moving to our present house. David was transferred with the guard years ago and I was not a happy camper about leaving the house I loved and my friends and family to move one hundred miles away. It may as well have been a thousand to me.

We had this big house on top of a hill and below us was a city park and a big lake we use to ice skate on in the Winter.  I loved that house so much and we were so happy there.

We drove through the park.

And looked at the lake and I took pictures from afar of our house on the hill.

This was our bedroom window that looked out on the park.  It was so beautiful up there. I still miss it even though I love our old house we live in and love where we live and would not want to move back.

This is the drive up to that house. The people living here now paved it, but when we lived there it was gravel.  One winter’s day, I was taking our children to church and my car slid on ice from the top of the hill, clear to the bottom and across the street below into a ditch.  My neighbor saw it happen and came out and helped me get the car out of the ditch and I drove on to church. When we got back home, we had to leave the car at the bottom of the hill and crawl, on our hands and knees to the top!  I can still see my children crawling up that hill.

Below our house was a railroad track. It seems we have always lived near a railway.

Now it is a walking and bicycling path which I would have loved when we lived there.

Down that way, which use to be railroad tracks, was the best raspberry bushes. The neighbor girls and I use to walk down there to pick the raspberries and would come home with raspberry juice all over us from eating them.  It was so much fun.

Driving home the next day, we took back roads, as usual.  We went through the town where parts of the movie, Hoosiers, was filmed and they had this mural painted on the side of a building.

I loved that movie because it was so true to life as to what it was like in Indiana in the fifties with our passion for basketball. Every  Friday night we would be in the high school gym or at another school’s gym to watch the boys play basketball. Three of my brothers played basketball and I loved to play it. We had a basketball goal in the haymow in our barn and I would practice shooting free throws for hours. I got to where I could hit one hundred of them in a row.   Hoosier hysteria was a true thing back then.  We loved our basketball.  I think a lot of the professional sports have ruined the excitement for high school basketball.

Driving the back roads of Indiana, you see the creativity of Hoosiers.  How many people have this carved in their back yard from an old tree?

An Indian with a bow and arrow.  We see lots of things like this driving the back roads that most will  never see as they drive the interstates.

It was a fun weekend.   We met up with a very good friend and went to an antique show and sale.

I bought this to go along with my Shirley Temple doll.  I loved Shirley Temple when I was growing up.  She was at an innocent time in our history when people would flock to the movie theaters to see this tiny little girl sing and dance. She was astonishingly talented and could dance with the best of them.

Two other things I purchased was this…

Don’t know why. I just liked it.  And this….

 

A miniature screen door that looks almost exactly like what we are putting on our screened in porch.  I will hang this on the wall of the porch when it is finished.( I had to remove the picture because I noticed I had an account number on the table and our tithe envelope for all to see.  Didn’t mean to do that.)  Just suffice to say it’s a cute little wooden screen door handmade by some artisan.

As I leave you, I want to show you this amazing three layer chocolate cake I made today. It is astounding in its elegance.  It will amaze David when he walks in the door.  I really put a lot of work into it and I really want to show it off because I don’t think I could ever make another one just like it….

It gets even better.

 

 

 

 

It could win prizes!

 

 

 

Well, at least I hope it tastes good. Bye.

 

 

 

 

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Are You Bored? Or Shall I Ramble Today?

Are you bored?  Have you ever been bored?  I probably got bored when I was a child, but I really don’t remember ever being bored. I always had something to do and if I couldn’t find something to do, my mother found something for me!   Right now, in this part of my life, I can honestly say I am never bored. In fact, I said to David the other day, “I wish I could be bored for just one day!”  He agreed.  Maybe that’s an awful thing to wish for, so I take it back.

Our life right now is going to the doctor, working on the house, taking care of the pets, going to the doctor and shopping for groceries, something we both seem to never feel like doing.  I hate to shop. At least in stores. I love to shop online in my easy chair, preferably in my pajamas with a cup of something hot beside me.  But going to a store and having to deal with all the people and then get to the checkout and see all the self checkout lanes and maybe, if you are lucky, two or three actual cashiers working. I am on a vendetta against self-serve lanes.  Now if you love them and think they are the bees’ knees, then ignore what I am about to write.  I believe self-serve lanes makes people the unpaid employees of the store that has them. You do all the work but don’t get any salary or benefits and the store owners pocket a whole lot more money. Plus, self-serve lanes put people out of work except for that person who just stands there waiting to help the people who don’t know how to use the self-serve lane.  I simply refuse to use them. I will stand in line for fifteen minutes and complain so everyone can hear me about all the self-serve lanes and the few service lanes.  David tries to pretend he is not with the crazy lady.  Many stores don’t offer any service anymore. Wal-mart is one of them. Wal-mart is not my favorite store and I wish Pioneer Woman had not made a deal with them to sell her stuff because I love her stuff, but hate shopping in Wal-mart.

Back to boredom.  I have a lot on my plate right now.  More than I really want or want to deal with, but sometimes life hands you a big plate of, shall I say CRAP(excuse the French) and you have to deal with it whether you want to or not. I try to ignore the bad stuff as much as possible and focus on the good stuff, but sometimes the bad stuff takes over for a time.  Yet, there is so much good stuff.

The good stuff for me right now is the fact it is Spring,  we are finally getting our old house painted, a new screened in back porch built and a revamped bathroom done. As I write the painters are banging ladders against the outside and painting up a storm. I really love the new darker color of our house. Now it will disappear into the scenery.  After our neighbor cut down all the trees on his property, our house stuck out like a sore thumb and people all of a sudden noticed our house.  Before, you could hardly see it from the road.  But now, with the darker paint and the fact that the bushes are growing taller because the trees are no longer there, the house will fade into the background again, which is good.   This old house has seen many changes in the decades it has stood. It was built just a few years after Queen Victoria died which I find kind of neat and before the first world war.  It’s held families during WWll, the Korean War, and the Viet Nam War and this family that has had a member who served in the Gulf.     It’s seen babies come in the front door and go out the back door adults.   It’s seen parties and Christmases and birthdays and sad days.  It’s been my cocoon when I have needed one. I hope whoever are the next occupants will have as wonderful a life in this house as David and I have had for over forty years.  I’m hoping we still have several years left in it.  It’s a dear, old house and I always think it has its arms around us. It’s haunted, too, but that’s a whole other story I will have to tell one day.

But, back to boredom.  I am never bored. If I get bored, I read a book and if I don’t want to read, I sew and if I don’t want to sew, I knit. Anything to get out of cleaning house.   I keep the house, as they say, clean enough to be healthy and dirty enough to be happy.   Dusting is the least favorite thing I like to do in housekeeping.   I dust when company is coming and not very often other than that.  My shop is one big dust bunny right now because I have a crate of baby chicks I am raising in there and they put out a lot of dander.  I didn’t realize how much dander just four little chickens can generate.  In a few weeks they will join the big girls and I will dust then.  They have almost all their feathers and are outgrowing the crate.  We put them outside for a while each day to acclimate them.   I will miss them when they move out of the house.  Just like I did my children!

But, back to boredom.  What does it feel like to be bored?  I really don’t know anymore.  Sometimes it seems that I just get up and it’s time to go to bed again and I wonder where the day went. Maybe I’m just a poor time manager or get distracted by too many things.  I get up in the morning planning to clean out a closet and the next thing I know, I’m planting flowers instead.  Or I plan to do the ironing and a quilt I am making calls my name and I must work on that.  Things do eventually get done, but usually not when I had planned them to be.

So, if you are bored, come to my house and I will find lots for you to do.  Bye. Oh, and thanks for putting up with my rambling thoughts today!  I was going to have pictures, but haven’t downloaded them yet. Got distracted.

 

 

Magical or Miracle?

I hear people say something is magical when they see it. I’ve said it myself a few times in my life.  And yes, some things are magical.  Why else is Disneyland called the “magic” kingdom.  Magic is the art of producing illusions. Things that aren’t really there, but appear to be. Disney does that very well.  They produce an illusion that everything is perfect and beautiful and fun when in reality it’s all an illusion. You can go to Disney and have a good or even a great time, but it’s all been an illusion that disappears the moment you leave the Disney park.  I’m not knocking Disney here. I have loved going to their theme parks and have enjoyed myself immensely, but there is a dark side to Disney none of us sees because it is kept well hidden from our eyes.   It truly knows how to produce magic. It has mastered the art of illusion.

I believe in miracles.  I believe they have happened and still happen. I expect them to happen.  I want them to happen. Miracles are extraordinary occurrences that surpass all known human power or natural forces and are ascribed to a divine or supernatural cause especially to God.  I know God performs miracles. I have seen some in my day.  Right now I am praying for a particular miracle to happen and I have no doubt in my mind that it will happen because I have a God who performs them. I may not live to see this particular miracle.  Now I don’t know why God performs miracles in some people’s lives and leaves them out of other’s.  I don’t know but it might be the faith that one has or lack thereof or maybe God knowing the future, knows some miracles won’t really change things in the long run.  Maybe you have had a miracle happen in your life. Maybe you are praying for one now. One miracle I witnessed was when my daddy became a born again Christian. My daddy was a two pack a day smoker and could swear like a sailor(no disrespect to sailors here) and never went to church unless he had to.   That’s not to say he was a bad daddy, because he wasn’t. He was a very good daddy in many respects and I loved being around him, but he was not a Christian.   Then my mother got very sick and almost died. I don’t know what God told him in that church the day he attended, but that day he went forward when the call to the altar was made, got down on his knees and gave his life to Christ and from that day forward he never smoked another cigarette, never swore and never missed a Sunday in church.  He spent the rest of his life working for the church.  The day he died I knew he was speaking personally with Jesus and shaking his hand or hugging him and I know that one day I will see my daddy again and he’s with my mother and if that isn’t a miracle, I don’t know what is.

God performs big and little miracles.  I know this story will sound crazy and I was imaging things, but to prove God performs little miracles and also has a sense of humor, here’s my story. I was walking one of my dogs in a field years ago and took off her leash and stuck it in my coat pocket. When it was time to go home, I felt for the leash and it was gone.  I searched all  over that field with my dog by my side and could not find it. Then I just said, “God, if you know where that leash is, would you please show me?”  Then I looked right behind me and curled carefully at my feet was the leash!  It looked like someone had placed it there as neatly as could be.  I have always thought God had done that to show me that even in the little things we should not be afraid to ask for help. And He will.  We all think God only works in the big things, but really, He’s in everything if you just look and just ask.

I guess I’m writing this today because I had the strangest dream and am up at 3:00 in the morning and felt like God was telling me something in that dream.  I can’t tell you the dream because it is too personal, but I think I got the message.

Also, I went outside my front door today and witnessed the best miracle of the season. I usually go in and out our back door when I’m at home, but we were going somewhere and we went out the front door and this is what I saw.

A mass of pink everywhere I looked.  Just a few days ago all was barren and dark and drab. Definitely not an illusion.  Not magic.

New life awakened from what was once dead looking.  A miracle. At least to my eyes and to my heart it was.  Who can explain it?  I’m sure there are scientific words to explain why the buds form and burst forth at a certain time, but who tells that bud to form and who tells it when to open?   I believe there are miracles all around us if we just open our eyes and look with our hearts.  This beauty won’t last long, but there will be other things to replace these.  My irises and poppies are getting ready to bloom.  I’m going to keep looking for miracles.  How about you?

Here’s to miracles and the One who performs them.  Bye.

 

2016

I’ve been scrolling through some of my favorite blogs and looking at their lists of favorite blogs and going to those blogs to read them. It seems that the year 2016  was the year the writing died.  Or at least it seems that way for many of the blogs.  I have told you that I got into the blogging world late, since I have always been a late bloomer and always found out about things long after they weren’t cool anymore, but I really miss some of my favorite blogs.

Anyway 2016 is the year, it seems, when many bloggers called it quits or moved to Instagram. Or Pinterest.   I’m just saying, looking at Instagram is like looking at people’s pictures from a vacation and wishing you could get away, but you keep looking because it’s the polite thing to do.  And pinterest can be lovely to look at, but how long can one look at pretty pictures of the same things?

I love reading blogs. Some people think their blogs must be boring, but I have never found a blog post to be boring. Maybe that says more about my life than theirs. Hmmmm.  Anyway, I find others’ lives so interesting. I feel like a voyeur at times peeking into someone’s house seeing what they are up to.  People will share on their blogs things they would not necessarily tell people they actually know.   I know.  I’m one of those people!  Sometimes it’s easier to write down your thoughts and send them out into the netherland than it is to tell the same things to a living, breathing person right next to you.

Is it a sign of our times when people feel the need to share with strangers all over the world what you did on a particular day or how you are feeling or how great or how awful your day has been?   Are we reaching out for validation of some kind or do we just like to write and this is our outlet?   I love to write.  I write lists.  I write notes in church.  I write letters sometimes.  I write stories I have made up.  I write memories of days gone by. So writing this blog is just an extension of my writing.   I just wonder what happened to all those bloggers who suddenly stopped in 2016.  Were they tired of writing? Did their lives become too busy to write?  Did the newness of blogging lose it’s shine?

So here I am in the year 2019 still plugging away at this blog of mine and I have no plans to stop. There’s still a lot of living to do and a lot to blog about so you won’t be seeing me disappear anytime soon. If you are still blogging, please, don’t stop. I may be one of your faithful readers and I would miss you.

To all the bloggers all over the world. Thank you. Bye.

Spring Fling

I can’t believe March is already gone and April is half over. My three favorite months are March, April and May and I really wish they’d go a little slower, but I’ve learned that time waits for no man or woman and is going by ever so quickly. I love this time of year when the birds are busy nesting and the flowers and trees are budding or bursting with bloom.  I walked out my front door this afternoon and was amazed how many things were blooming seemingly overnight.

 

I haven’t even taken pictures of the Weeping Cherry which just broke out in bloom today and the azalea that is engulfed in pink blooms. I’ll try to get a picture tomorrow before they lose all their blossoms. We are  expecting rain the next two days, so don’t know how long all the blossoms will last.  It surely is beautiful and lifts the spirits.

David and I took  little trip to Streamcliff Farm last weekend where we met up with our oldest son, his girl friend and her mother. Streamcliff Farm is a farm built before the Civil War.  It has many out buildings that have been turned into little shops selling antiques and garden paraphernalia.  There is a little chapel where weddings take place.  There are gardens to wander and a nursery, but it is still a little too cold here to set any flowers outside.

There were two green houses open that I looked and dreamed through.

This sign shows where the gardens are.

Garden art everywhere.  It was magical.

Inside the chapel.

You can buy all kinds of gardening things.  They have these wagons you can pull around and fill with all you purchase.

This is the house with a nice patio out front.  They have a Christmas dinner you can go to every year and I’d love to attend it one year.  I would love to see inside this grand old house.

There is a café there where they sell lunches and so we put our names on the waiting list.

Once inside you are seated at a pretty table and a very nice waitress comes to wait on you.

I ordered the Birdseed salad which had no seed in it at all. It was a pasta salad with broccoli and tomatoes and the best dressing.  All the salads came with their own flower which you could eat if you are so inclined. It was delicious. I also ordered their lemonade which is the best lemonade I have ever tasted.

I have had it before and had to have it again this time.  It was a very pleasant meal.

Enjoyed visiting with our son and his girlfriend and her mother.  Then David and I decided to order dessert.

Blackberry cobbler with ice cream. Yum. Yum. So good I decided I am making it for Easter dinner this Sunday.   Dave and I shared this, but next time, I am only ordering this with a cup of coffee and that’s all I’m eating!

Back during the Civil War, Morgan’s Raiders, a confederate band got as far as the Indiana border and came up near Streamcliff over this creek.

They didn’t get much farther.  Northern soldiers ran them back south.

It was a fun day and then David and I took the back roads home. Indiana is beautiful and interesting in the Spring.  We saw this old church. You see a lot of old churches on back roads.

Sad that it stands empty. I hope the congregation is meeting someplace new.

Since it’s bird nesting season, I asked David to put out all the old birdhouses we have had laying around here for a while.

This one has been around for a long time. It looks like a haunted birdhouse. It is home to a bird family every year.

The birds have homes now so I hope they pack their bags and move in.

And David got the pool open, but it’s much too cold to swim yet although every year one or more of our grandchildren jump in no matter how cold it is.

I’ve been doing a little Spring cleaning.  Washing some quilts.

I only have about one hundred or so.  Some are very old and one of them I washed fell apart a little bit.  I should have washed it on handwash.  Oh, well.

Dusting is something I don’t like to do very well and in this old hundred year old house, I can dust and the next day it doesn’t look like I’ve dusted anything, but I manage to get off the layers.  Having company coming always makes me look at my house a little harder and notice things I don’t usually pay attention to.  Several are coming for Easter and we are having an Easter Egg hunt for the kids so we have been busy getting ready for that.  I should say, David has been getting things ready.  Our church is having an Easter cantata Sunday and I’m looking forward to that.   I love Easter. I’m glad it’s late this year or I would not have been ready.

And because I don’t have anything else to sew, I have been making these little mug rugs just for fun.

I love making little things that take very little time, but look cute.

Hope you all have a blessed Easter and remember the Savior who died for us all. He loves us that much.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

Sad Day

I told you about my baby chicks in the last post and today I have a sad thing to tell you. My Auracanas did not make it.  They looked a little puny after a day and yesterday one of them just sat and did not do anything and this morning the second one looked unwell.  I knew it was just a matter of time.  David, as usual, took care of the bodies for me, like he’s done ever since we’ve been married and I have had pets.   He’s less attached than me.  Sometimes you get sickly animals when you least expect it.  We had a dog once who was always nervous. She was scared of her own shadow. When I’d walk her, she would shy away from  mailboxes. We always wondered if she had poor eyesight or some nerve condition.  And one day she just up and died. No warning or anything.

Growing up on a farm there was always the chance of an animal dying. We had cows, pigs, one sheep, a horse, chickens, ducks, guineas, rabbits, dogs and cats.  There was always the chance of one of them dying or being part of a, ahem, meal.  So we learned early not to get too attached to the animals that were our food.  We did have one bull calf we named Penny because he was a beautiful copper color.  I helped hand raise him and he grew up big and strong and lord over all the cows.  But he was destined to be meat for our table and one day, the man who did the butchering, came to our house and shot him and dressed him for my father.  I stayed in the house all day and cried.  I vowed I would never eat any meat my mother cooked from him.  Long story short, my appetite got the better of my sadness and I did help eat Penny. But I still remember how beautiful he was. If this disturbs some of you, just remember that was and is farm life.  Most people don’t get to see where their food comes from and vegans would never have eaten Penny, but I was not and have never been a vegan.  We raised our own vegetables also so I know where they come from, too.

Boy, did I get a long way from the death of my baby chicks.  I guess it’s to say, it’s the circle of life. Some live longer than others, just like we humans and we feel sad about it, but we go on and maybe I will get more baby chicks in the future. I still have four of them that are hale and hearty and I hope will grow up to be good layers. I just won’t have blue eggs like I was hoping for.

Maybe you have a sad tale about a pet or animal you loved.   If you grew up on a farm, like me, you probably have several tales to tell. Bye.

Life’s a Little “Cheeper”

Turn your tv off. Stop listening to all the talking heads who only have opinions.  Put down your cellphone, unless you are reading this on it.  Take a deep, hearty breath of the fresh Spring air, if it’s Spring where you are and come visit with me for a while.  The more I hear the news, the more I want to turn it off because according to most “news” people life will end soon. So I have decided since I have such a short time to live, I may as well enjoy myself.

I indulged myself this week and got some baby chicks. I had argued with myself that I really didn’t need even more critters around that depend upon me for their livelihood.  Then I walked into Rural King and back to the troughs where they kept the baby chicks and my heart melted. I have lost two of my hens in the past month and it’s been kind of traumatic for me so I felt like I needed some little cheepers.    They are so adorable.  I had to get six as that was the fewest Rural King will sell at a time so I got two more Buff Orpingtons, two Barred Rocks and two Auracanas, ones who lay blue eggs.  I’m so looking forward to seeing those.  And here they are.

The Auracanas looked like little chipmunks. In fact, I asked the guy who was getting mine for me to get the ones who look most like chipmunks.  David said I should call them Chip and Dale, but since they are females, I am going to call them Chippy and Dahlia.   The Buff Orpingtons are Rosy and  Peony  and the Barred Rocks’ names are Violet and Pansy, keeping with the flower theme. In the past my chickens have been named for women in the Bible and women in my Sunday School class. This made it kind of bad when one of them died and I’d have to say so-and-so had died.  Miss Mary Foster is one of my older hens and the name of a good friend of mine and I’m thinking when Miss Mary Foster dies, I’m not telling anyone for fear someone would get the wrong idea.

They are as curious about me as I am of them.

Can you see why I think she looks like a chipmunk?

They keep me company in my shop while I sew.  One of them was cheeping all afternoon.

 

I have had to use this seam ripper several times with these blocks.

 

This is what I have been working on.  I am sewing a mystery quilt featured on Kathleen Tracy’s blog.  If you go to her blog and click on the files on mystery quilt, you can get the directions for four months of quilt blocks. When we have them all sewn, she will show us how we are to put them together into a quilt.   I don’t usually do this kind of thing, but this has been fun and I look forward to each month’s new block. And while going through some of my fabric, I found this fabric that has all the colors in the blocks.

If you are a quilter or sewer, you can understand how I felt when I found this fabric. Kind of like Christmas.  I can come upon a fabric I had forgotten about and it’s just like that to me!   I’m hoping I have enough of this for a border for this quilt.

It just goes so well with all the blocks.  It really does not take a whole lot to get me excited especially when it comes to quilting.

Another project I am just starting is this….

Found in this magazine…..

The blocks are made with one and one half inch pieces, the smallest I will go to make a quilt.

Then there is this square to be appliqued and embroidered.  I think I am going to really enjoy making this as I do love handwork like this.   I am making this to hang in my shop.  I’ll have to hurry because when the weather finally gets warm, I want to be outdoors as much as possible.  We are looking at 70 degree temperatures by the weekend.

And speaking of outdoors, we have corn out for the birds and whoever else wants it, but we never have seen anyone eating it until this week when I saw this squirrel busily munching on it.

He/she sat there for quite a while picking off kernels and eating them.

We are still feeding the birds, but soon they will be foraging for food in the wild again and won’t need our help.

The puppies are so happy with the warmer temperatures.   I do believe Molly is smiling here.

And she’s in a playful mood.  Both dogs’ tails are wagging like crazy here even though you can’t see it.

“Come on, Belle, let’s play!”  Belle will be twelve years old this year, 84 in people years so she decides when they play.  She still acts like a puppy at times and then at other times her joints hurt and she limps around.  I can’t believe she’s that old already. Seems like we just got her as a puppy not long ago. I guess that will be the next new pet I will be looking for.

Hope you are enjoying the beginning of Spring and that it’s warming up in your neck of the woods.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

Gone With the Wind

 

No, this isn’t about a problem with gas attacks or a theme on Dorothy’s trip to the land of Oz.   I am writing today about the greatest movie of all time that was ever created and put on screen.  I am writing about that wonderful movie that came from Margaret Mitchell’s wonderful book, “Gone With the Wind.”   Did I say it was wonderful, yet?  Well, it is.

I grew up watching Gone With the Wind.  I’m not sure where I saw it for the very first time. One would think I’d remember it since I am so in love with the movie.  I may have seen it at the theater with my mother or I may have watched it for the first time on the television.  No matter, I fell in love with it and I really fell in love with the actor who played Rhett Butler, Clark Gable.  Yikes, was he ever handsome. When Scarlett first sees him at the bottom of that huge staircase at the Wilkes’ picnic, I swoon every time.   And the best kissing scene in any movie, ever, was when Rhett picked up Scarlett out of the wagon and kissed her before he went off to fight the losing war with the southern soldiers.   Scarlett, you idiot. That man loved you so much and that was some kiss.  And you rebuffed him!

This past weekend Gone With the Wind was having a special 80th year making of the movie celebration showing at a local movie theater. Well, not so local. We had to drive an hour to get there.  We had purchased our tickets weeks ago and I was so looking forward to seeing it again.  Not like I haven’t watched it once or twice every year since I’ve been a girl.  But it was like the very first time for me. I actually got a lump in my throat when the music started and the opening credits came on.  It was like time stood still and I was once again that romance loving, dream believing young girl sitting in a darkened theater watching her very favorite movie of all time for the very first time.

And I swooned when Scarlett saw Rhett at the bottom of the stairs and asked, who is that man?  Little did she know how involved she was going to get with him!  Eating popcorn and Milk duds, sitting beside my favorite date, I was in heaven.    I forgot the movie was four hours long with an intermission, but it flew by. When it was over, I could have sat through it again. Did I say I loved Gone With the Wind, yet?

So today I got out some of my Gone With the Wind books I have purchased or been given through the years.  A few years back my kids gave me a CD of the movie which means I can watch it anytime I want, but I still watch it when it’s on tv. I guess it’s knowing I’m watching it with others that makes it special.   Anyway, when I was about fourteen, the book Gone With the Wind was celebrating its 25th anniversary of being published and for Christmas that year, I got the celebratory issue.     I read it all and loved it, too.   There was a lot in the book that was not in the movie. Scarlett had more children than just Bonnie Blue.

The book came in this.

This was the front of the book.

A booklet about the book.

Through the years I have purchased other books about Gone With the Wind.

A book about the making of the movie.

A book chock full of scenes from the movie including back stage scenes.

At an auction years ago I bought this book that was published in l936 about the time the first book came out, but this is not a first edition I don’t believe.

And then at a flea market near our home I found this book in a pile of junk. And what a find it was for me.

A very interesting book about Margaret Mitchell’s life and how she came to write, “Gone With the Wind.”  Years after the movie became so successful,  she was hit by a speeding taxicab and died.  A sad ending to a very interesting life and an illustrious career.  I will always be grateful to Miss Mitchell for writing one of the best books ever written, in my opinion.  It should be required reading.  In today’s attempt to get rid of all our history because it offends some people, we need to know our history more than ever before and to learn it from someone who was there or knew someone who was there or at least knows the real story.  Her story is full of the history of both the post and pre-Civil War South. She learned it at the knee of old Civil War soldiers when she was a girl.  We should never forget.   One of the books had a newspaper article slipped into its pages about Margaret Mitchell’s brother and how he kept her story alive and kept up with the Gone With the Wind profits from sales of books, movie tickets, CDs, etc.  Profits were still in the millions at the time of the newspaper article.  She certainly left a legacy for her family. She had no children.

I don’t know if I will be alive when the 100th year of the Gone With the Wind Movie is shown, but I hope there will still be people interested and that it will never be forgotten.

Here’s to the best movie ever made(in my opinion) Gone With the Wind.  Bye.

 

 

 

A Family of Bloggers

I got into this blogging thing late. While many had already been blogging for years and made friends and grew businesses from their blogs,  I was still learning about the computer and Facebook and E-mail and didn’t know there was a whole other group of people out there who wrote about their lives, their passions, their families, etc.  One of the first blogs I ever read was Pioneer Woman and you all know what happened with her and all her fame and fortune.

The first time I read Ree’s blog I laughed so hard and sent her a comment and she answered me back and I was hooked.  I have kept up with her family and watched her children grow from little kids to almost adults.  I watched her grow her business and become a household name and get a tv cooking show.   I had no such ambitions.  The next blog I got hooked on was Posie Gets Cozy.  It’s a delicious combination of family, knitting, quilting and creating and adoption which took a sad turn at one point and then turned into a wonderful story when the Paulsons adopted a baby girl and I was enraptured by their story.   I have watched their little girl grow and become a school girl.  Alicia’s wonderful way with words makes her blog so sweet to read.  She doesn’t hold back when she is sad, but most often she is a bright, shining star who shows us all the beauty that is in this world.    I discovered Canadian Needle Nana and am astounded at how many quilts she has made and continues to make.  She is a an artist at quilting and inspires me to do better.  And for laughs, I love reading The New Sixty by Arkansas Patti.  A woman with the best sense of humor and she makes you think.   I have laughed so hard at some of her posts. She only writes one every week and I always look forward to Monday when I can read another installment of her very eventful life.  She has done some interesting things in her life and has a humorous take on almost everything.  This week is about things better than sex!  Yes.

I finally began a blog and it was called, I Love My Dogs,” because, well, I love my dogs and still do.  I learned how to post pictures and really enjoyed writing about my life. I considered it a diary for my children who may one day want to know more about their mother.  Then, one day, most of my pictures disappeared from the blog because David had been tinkering with them and lost them all. I was dismayed, to say the least.   Fast forward and I decided to start a new blog. My son paid for my website and I was off and running again with “Snicklefritz.”  In case you don’t already know why I named my blog Snicklefritz, it’s because that is what my daddy always called me.  Snicklefritz means a mischievous child and I was that.

Many blogs I read and loved have gone by the wayside because of family issues or work or the blogger was just tired of keeping a blog up. It does take time to write a blog and if you add pictures that takes even more time so I can understand why some have given up their blogs, but I really miss some of them.  One in particular, Posy, a blogger from England quit because she was having trouble with her computer and never came back.  I loved reading her blog and I have heard she may start one up again and I hope I can find it and read it when she does.

As for me, I just love writing. Doing this blog gives me an outlet for it and there is so many things I want to write about.  I’ve got several stories I have written about when I was growing up that I intend to post on my blog eventually.  I have also written some children’s stories with my grandchildren as the subjects in them that I may post one day.  I enjoy sharing my hobbies, my travels and just my humdrum days. I don’t live an especially exciting life, but it’s my life and I’m content with it.  I don’t think I take exciting too well, anyway.

If you are reading this and have never tried writing a blog because you think your life is not interesting enough, believe me.  Everyone’s life is interesting. I love to read about the every day things.  If there are some especially exciting or wonderful things, that’s nice too, but I  think everyone’s life is a story that needs to be written.  So if you have been holding off writing a blog, now is the time to start. You will find out things about yourself as you write. It’s cathartic in many ways.

Here’s to blogging and all the bloggers who put their lives out there for us to read about.  Bye.

 

Winter Hangs on With Gusto and Seventy Came Too Quickly

Just when we thought Spring might be just around the corner, Winter hit us with another blast of cold air and lots of that white stuff that likes to stick to the ground and on the roads and makes us have to work whenever we want to go anywhere.  It’s really pretty and does make things look a whole lot better outside. The outdoors had begun to have that ugly, muddy, dirty, just before Spring look it gets every year when nothing looks especially pretty unless you like dirt, mud and grey.

This week I’m celebrating my seventieth birthday which kind of astounds me when I think about it. I remember sitting in Home Economics class with some of my girlfriends many years ago, discussing how old we’d be in the year 2000 and most of us would be 50 or 51 and we thought that was so old. Now I’m nineteen years pass 2000 and looking at a whole new decade that I never thought I’d see for at least a few more years, but here I am.  How did I get here so quickly?  If you are reading this and you are in your thirties, forties or younger, just know, one day you will be seventy one day if you are so blessed, and you, too, will wonder where the years have gone. We take youth so for granted, but it really is fleeting so enjoy it while you can.  You will not be young forever. That is not to say you can’t remain young at heart. I still find things pretty miraculous at times. I love nature and baby animals and babies and listening to stories and playing outside in the fresh air. My body doesn’t cooperate like it use to. In fact, my body tells me, “No,” many more times than I like.   I can’t run up steps two at a time anymore.  Sometimes I feel downright shaky on my own two legs. I tire easier.  But that’s okay since when I’m tired I can still sew, quilt, knit and read, all things I love to do.  I’ve knit two pairs of socks in the last weeks which kind of tells you I’ve been a little tired lately.

I still want to get one more puppy and a kitten. I still want to get more baby chicks and raise them to adulthood and gather eggs every day.  I still have a lot of places I’d like to see and people I’d like to visit.  I’d like to walk five miles a day again. There is still a lot of life in this old girl!   So I will celebrate my birthday by eating cake and ice cream and thank the dear Lord I made it this far.  Whatever happens in the future is in His hands, so I’m happy with that.

My very best friend in grade school was a girl whose name is Mary Jean. She and I were born in the same hospital, on the same day and our mothers shared a room while there.  We found each other in first grade and we have been friends ever since.  We grew apart in high school, mainly because our classes were not the same and I was boy crazy and dating and found David, the love of my life in high school, but we re-ignited our friendship after high school through letters we wrote to each other. She married and moved clear across the country and raised three children, one of them named Kate, and we stayed in contact.  One year David and I drove out west and I wanted to go see her so I called her and she was so excited to hear I was coming.   We drove and drove over the mountains to her town and found her house. It was like we had never been apart.  I met her children and her very nice husband. I was so glad she found a good man. Sadly, he has since passed away.  She fed us lunch and homemade pie and we sat and talked in her back yard and she took David and me to see a neighborhood garden that was so beautiful and the fact the people allowed the public to tromp through their garden was very special.  Our visit was way too short. She gave me some flower seeds to plant when I got home.  When we left I felt so sad because I knew it was probably the last time we’d see each other.  We continue to send cards to one another and when I was sick this past November, she was so concerned for me and wrote me a letter saying so which was very touching.  I wrote back reassuring her that I was well.   This is true friendship when the love for a friend never dies no matter how far apart you are.  I have so many stories I could tell about her and my escapades when we were girls.  I’m hoping she will have a happy birthday and know that I am thinking of her.

Our daughter and her family brought me some beautiful flowers for my birthday.

Several different kinds.

A sunflower which makes me think of Summer days when I complain about it being too hot, so I better enjoy this cool weather now.

Little roses. So pretty and dainty.

Are these carnations?  Not sure.

I really wish someone could tell me what these are. My son-in-law didn’t know either and he knows flowers. They are gorgeous.

They also gave me this card.

Why do people think I like chickens? Hmmmmmm?   I just ordered a T-shirt with a chicken in a headscarf  on the front of it, so maybe I do like them a little bit.  I lost another one of my older chickens this week. I went out today and couldn’t find her and David found her under the snow. He thinks she probably died before we had the snow because there was no snow under her.  It’s getting closer to the time I will have to get more chickens. They have them at Rural King and I have been looking at them.

And one of my grandsons wrote me this birthday greeting.

There was a piñata.

A slide for me to go down!

A birthday cake, of course.

Thank you, Tristan. I really enjoyed this card and will save it forever.

I have several friends who are now in their eighties and still going strong.  Our contractor told us he believed his father was going to live to be one hundred.  I’m not so sure I want to live that long, but we can’t chose our time to die, so whenever God calls me home will be my time.   I’m hoping David and I have many healthy, happy birthdays ahead.   Anyway, we are celebrating all week. I don’t plan to do much cooking or baking and a whole lot of eating out and maybe some shopping.  We are going to pick up the new sink for our bathroom which is getting remodeled this Spring.   I’ve always wanted a pedestal sink and since David picked out the sink and cabinet for our upstairs bathroom, I am choosing the sink. Off to Home Depot we will go!  I love remodeling. I think I would have done well on one of those fixer upper shows on HGTV.  I love seeing a room and changing it into something completely different.  Heaven knows, I’ve done it several times in my lifetime. I have done most all the painting in our house. The paint section in the lumber yard store is my favorite place.  I’ve made some bloopers in my time like the Pepto Bismol pink bedroom I painted once. We lived with it for several years, but David never let me forget it.  We’ve papered, stripped paper, painted and painted again all the rooms in this old house of ours. Right now I’m pretty content with all the rooms, but give me time.

We live on a fairly busy road, especially during the week and I have seen many things go by in all the years we have lived there. Because there is a train track right across the road, we see a lot of trains which my grandsons love. Me, not so much although I’ve gotten use to them. We have always lived where we could hear the trains go by.  We lived on a hill in Richmond and down below us was the train track. It’s now a walking trail which I would have loved when we were living there.  The neighbor girls and I went raspberry picking along that track years ago and got the best raspberries.  Raspberries use to grow wild in a place near our house where we live now and David would go and pick a quart or two for a pie.  The gravel pit expanded and they covered up the raspberry plants, so no more raspberries. Boo.  By the way, I got off the subject of the train track. David looked out the window the other day and said, “What is that?”

I was thinking space ship.  It was extra long and the truck driver was having a hard time turning and getting over the railroad track.

Traffic began to back up.

Then he finally got over the track, but he got stuck and I began to worry about a train coming because they go through often.

But in a few minutes a guy from the gravel pit came riding up on this front end loader and lifted that thing right up and over the track.  It’s called a trommel. Our word for today.  A trommel is a rotary cylindrical or conical screen for sorting ore, coal, gravel, etc. I would have never known that, but David watches all these shows on tv where people are digging for gold.  This one will be used at the gravel pit.

That’s all for today. I’m going out to eat for the first time this birthday week. David took the week off so we are eating out every day.  Yay! And we are eating dessert first.

Here’s to best friends, birthdays, trommels and painting fanaticism.  Bye.