Friday, May 6, 2016

Feline Friday (Epic Photobomb}

I have not let Gracie outdoors in eons due to suspicions that she is allergic to something, even when I brushed her upon returning indoors. When we mow down part of the back yard later this month or early June, I will let her outside once again. In the meantime, Gracie decided to sleep on my Mother's dry sink in the studio. She has been wanting to be close to me of late which is strange for her. But then, she has her moments. I decided to see if I can get a decent picture of her.

I then went to the other side to see if getting a picture from that angle would be better. I snapped a series quickly adjusting the lens and whatnot in between. (FYI: I rarely check the screen after snapping pictures.) The below is what I got.

You can almost see Abby Gail asking "what was that?" after the first click. And then, checking the camera out upon the second click. She made me laugh and I had to abandon the project after taking a few boring pictures with her in focus.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Weekly Recap #17

{April 24 through May 1, 2016}


  • I harvested a few more strawberries. I am cleaning, flash freezing and packing them up into freezer bags. If I can collect enough of them, I want to make strawberry jam. If not, I will most likely make a dessert or two with them.
  • The cucumbers in the main garden have flowers. The peanuts have also sprouted flowers. It is beginning to look like I will have success growing onions this time around and I am shocked! If they are actually successful, I will have five or six onions -- a very small crop. But, I planted just a few to determine if they will grow in our new space.
  • I purchased a food dehydrator. I did not want to spend a fortune and this particular machine got decent ratings at Amazon and elsewhere. I purchased some more Clean-a-Screen trays so that I can utilize all the trays that came with the dehydrator to dry herbs. I am going to purchase more Add-a-Tray and Clean-a-Screen trays in the near future as the machine allows a maximum of twelve trays!

    There is just something about cutting herbs straight from the garden and laying them out in a single layer for the dehydrator that makes my soul sing. I started two layers Sunday morning – Parsley and Basil. They should be done between 20 - 24 hours.

DIY Shed aka "The Barn"

  • Dan managed to get all the wood cut for the trusses (the roof). He is now working on the things that support the trusses. His allergies hit him hard Sunday; so, he called it quits. There is no hurry. It will get built sooner or later.
Kitchen (Canning)

  • We made some grape jelly from a mixture of store bought red and black grapes. We did not get any wild grapes last year. I believe the reason is lack of rain during the summer. I am hoping that this year will be different. If so, I will make more jelly from wild grapes.

    In the meantime, I bought grapes on sale to make jelly for Dan and myself. We canned Sunday (May 1) using the Heritage Collection purple Ball jars that I had for some time now. That is why it looks so dark.

    We managed to make a mess and I burned my thumb. In spite of this, it is so worth the effort. Dan's words upon first tasting was "We are never buying store bought jelly again"! I am in agreement.


  • I started reading and finished a book, The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan. I first learned of this series (The Wheel of Time) years ago long after the first book was written. It is considered to be a classic among the fantasy genre. The first book was no longer being sold. And, I am one of those folks who have to start from the first book in a series. I finally landed the first and second book at Half Price books not too long ago.

    This book was an extremely good read. It has been ages since I was sucked into another world via written words. There were times I was in so deep and then I would be jolted out of the world mostly by Abby Gail (my cat) who demanded my attention. These are the kinds of books I once loved and the kind of books I used to seek because they were my escape from the harsh reality of life and loneliness in my youth.

By perseverance the snail reached the ark.

Charles H Spurgeon (1834-1892)

Monday, April 25, 2016

Weekly Recap #16

{April 18 through April 23, 2016}


  • I harvested the first strawberries Wednesday (the 20th) – three in all! The lemons, tater (potatoes) and the peas all have flowers. I need to weed the garden areas as it is rapidly getting out of control.
Quilting; Crafts

  • I picked out, cut and sewed up fabrics for a Courthouse Steps block which is in Section 2 of the Gypsy Wife quilt. I also picked out and cut fabrics for a Bordered Square-in-Square block.
  • splish splash stash

Red Poppy Festival, Georgetown, Texas

  • The Red Poppy Festival in Georgetown has been marked in my calendar for months. We decided to just go on April 22nd and use this event to celebrate our 22nd Anniversary a week late. It was a lot bigger than we expected and reminded me of Huntsville's Fair on the Square that is held every October. There were lots of things for kids to do along with tons of arts and crafts booths. The biggest event was the car show which is a judged event; so, there were a lot of a cool looking vintage cars! I did not take any pictures this time around as I did not think there was anything picturesque to take.
DIY Shed aka "The Barn"

  • We had just a partial weekend as we took Saturday off to celebrate our 22nd Anniversary a week late. We did work Sunday. We managed to get all the siding put up on the remaining two walls and Dan got the door openings cut out. It is beginning to take shape.

  • I had the permanent crown put on my broken molar last Thursday and am so happy that is done and over with!
  • We had an electrician come out and wire up a ceiling fan box for us in the Studio. I am getting real excited about putting the cute little thing (ceiling fan) up in that room!

By perseverance the snail reached the ark.

Charles H Spurgeon (1834-1892)

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Wordy Wednesday {The Barn Continued}

The Beginning
Continued I

Note: The weekend of April 10th and 17th was cloudy not to mention we had storms on the 17th. So, all pictures reflect the gloomy (cloudy) days and are not all that great.

The floor of the barn and the deck of the porch was laid and completed on the April 10th.

A closeup shot of the flooring and deck. We plan to stain the decking in the future to further protect it from the weather.

The first wall (back wall) was built and put up on April 16th. We managed to do this all by ourselves against the wind. I was amazed and impressed with what we managed to do!

The front wall was built on April 16th and put up on the morning of 17th. We failed our first attempt. It was a little heavier on account of the header built for the door. The Gardener must have seen our humiliation because he offered to help. I am thankful for his help because we got it on the second attempt.

The other two walls were built and put up in between storms on the 17th. These were a heck of a lot easier to put up! We were extremely tired, wet and sore folks by the end of the day!

The barn door side view.

The plan is to take off Saturday and finish putting on the siding this Sunday (April 24). We may even get started on the joists that will support the ceiling and loft.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Weekly Recap #15

{April 11 through April 17, 2016}

Just an advanced warning. I am real tired from not getting enough sleep overnight on account of pain. So, please excuse any spelling and grammar mistakes that I have not caught via editing.


  • The gardens are still sprouting. The tater (potato) plants are huge and have sprouted tiny flowers. Yes, I buried them quite a few times until I felt I ran out of room in the tater box to keep filling with dirt. The peas have shot up practically overnight. And, we got a few strawberries. I am pleased.
Quilting; Crafts

  • My first attempt (left) on the Pershing block for Section 2 of the Gypsy Wife Quilt was not great. It is badly skewed (not squared). So, I made a second block with the help of tips and notes off the interwebs including one from a facebook friend. I am real pleased with my second effort. This is all I did for a week! I do not think I will ever make another Pershing block as it is very difficult to make!

    I am saving the block I scrapped for the backing. I tend to use leftover blocks and fabrics to make the backing. So, we shall see.

  • splish splash stash

DIY Shed aka "The Barn"

  • I never did post pictures of the progress of the barn, did I? Oh well. We now have all four walls up in spite of threats of storms. In fact, at one point, when a flash of lightning appeared a ways off, I yelled "I'm out of here", dropped my hammer and nails and ran for the door. Dan laughed; but, he calmly picked up the tools and headed for indoors too. I may laugh about it now; but, thunderstorms make me extremely nervous.

    Anyway, I am thankful the gardener (neighbor) helped us put the second wall up because we failed on our first attempt. We had no troubles with the "side" walls as they were much lighter. We put up the last wall after the thunderstorm passed through. Another one was brewing while we were finishing up securing that wall.

    I plan to post pictures of the progress soon. Key word is “plan”.

Heaven is not for good people. heaven is for forgiven people.

~ Greg Laurie ~