Friday, May 30, 2014

Feline Friday {One Year}

Abby Gail turned one year old around May 1st. It has been quite the adventure with her this past year. I am thankful for her every day because she is the one that made me get up every morning last summer when I was sick. She has mellowed a bit; but, she is still our holy terror. And, downright stubborn at times.

3/28/2014

I have been trying to train her to not chew on wires especially the ones off my laptop. She would squint and flatten her ears with a "but, but, but I has to bite it" attitude knowing she is going to get thumped on the head. {It is a gentle but firm thump.} She did this for a long time the other day before finally giving up.

4/2/2014

She is such a smart little thing. When I see that she needs to burn up some energy, I would open the toy drawer, she would come a running. I would pick her up and dump her inside. She would paw and sniff around until she finds a toy she wants. She then pick the toy up in her mouth and take off. More often than not, she takes it either into the kitchen or my room and quietly play while I putter about.

4/18/2014

She has recently taken to climbing the Crepe Myrtle trees. Both Dan and I have long suspected she is a tree dweller and this confirms it for us both. Come to think of it, I rarely see her on the floor. She is always on the back of a chair, in her papasan chair, beside my legs or on the cat tree. I am going to have to build a super highway to keep her happy around here. That will begin in my room (studio) as I want to share the space with my cats and yet, they need places to be safe and happy.

4/18/2014

Abby thinks this camp chair is hers. She loves the stupid thing. It is falling apart. So, I will be giving it to her when I purchase a new camp chair for myself.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Winning Love

Foreword and note: I read somewhere that they do not post their winnings for fear of appearing to be bragging. Huh? I never thought I was bragging; but, I can see their point. My reason for doing this is to give bloggers and their giveaways a shout out and this is my way of giving additional thanks to them.

By the way, I am constantly tweeting giveaways I run across on twitter. I often do not enter giveaways because the prize is not I would use (or want) or worst yet, the giveaway had dozens of chances to win. I just do not have to time to do them all. I have seen one giveaway that had 93 entries a person could do to enter. Yes, you read that right. 93! I do not have that kind of time or bandwidth.

Anyway, I tweet all the ones I come across because I know others might be interested.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Wordy Wednesday {Snapshot of Eclipse}

4/15/2014

I woke around 3:30am and remembered that an lunar eclipse was happening. So, I got up and checked the sky through the windows. I was amazed that I was able to view a partial eclipse. I grabbed my camera and shot through the window. It was way too cold to go outside!

I thought that this is not bad considering I shot the picture using an extremely slow shutter speed with no tripod. I was actually using the cat tree to steady myself. Ha!

By the way, the next lunar eclipse will be on October 8, 2014. To see if you can view that eclipse, refer to this map. More information for the United States can be found here.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

DIY Farmhouse Bench

Remember our farmhouse table that I built with Dan's help? Well, here is a matching bench that Dan built:

Started...

As you can see, our table is getting used which is exactly why I wanted it built. I have also used it quite of few times for my own projects while keeping an eye out on the cats.

Testing...

Completed!

The second bench is about halfway done. Hurray for Dan!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Macro Monday {Aberrations}

3/21/2014

3/26/2014

These were on our land and they belong to the Phlox family of wildflowers. These are aberrations because one was almost white and the other was painted. Most of the flowers on our land were a darker solid color.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Blogging Break

I have been busy with life and I have not worked on any new posts recently. I am wanting to focus on a few other things with the house since I have spent much of my time outdoors recently. It is now getting hot - the typical blazing hot weather for Texas. So, I have decided to take a blogging break and focus on neglected chores and whatnot. Hopefully, this break will be just one week. However, it may turn into two weeks.

Thank you for your loyalty (readership) and your patience.

Monday, May 5, 2014

April Recap


  • Savings

    Previous Balance 90.00
    Week 15 (04/07)
    +30.00
    240.00
    Week 16 (04/14)
    +32.00
    272.00
    Week 17 (04/21)
    +34.00
    306.00
    Week 18 (04/28)
    +36.00
    342.00

  • Book Finishes

    • #7: The Skin Map (Bright Empires #1) by Stephen R. Lawhead.

      I have read The Dragon King Trilogy and The Song of Albion trilogy eons ago by this same author. While browsing clearances at a local christian bookstore, I spied this lone book for under $6.00. After reading the inside flap, I knew I wanted to purchase the book. After all, I really liked the first trilogy mentioned above and the second trilogy was fairly good. I knew that this could potentially be good read.

      This book has 3.72 stars at Goodreads and 3.9 stars at Amazon. I gave it 4 stars at Goodreads. It is a mixture of fantasy and adventure with a little Sci-Fi thrown in. It is also a Christian genre. This book really picked up near the end and I am wanting (and hoping) to find book #2 and #3 at Half Price Books the next time we make a trip to the "city".

    • #8: Happy, Happy, Happy by Phil Robertson

      I read this book and #9 below in one day. Yes, you heard that right. Two books in one day! I am a fan of the Duck Dynasty TV show and have been wanting to read both books when they first were published. This book has 4.08 stars at Goodreads and 4.8 stars on Amazon. I gave it 5 stars on Goodreads. It is impossible to give it 4.5 stars; so, I felt 5 stars is a better reflection than 4 stars. I really enjoyed this book and loved the insights into the founder of Duck Commander. His life was by no means perfect. Even two of his children, the elder and the youngest, went through difficult times.

    Note: I believe only fans of Duck Dynasty would enjoy reading the above two books. Anyone else who reads these books would could get lost and/or offended by a variety of things including Christianity.

  • Projects

    • Finished organizing the patterns I found in a packing box last month. I threw out over half of the patterns and organized the rest into file folders.
    • Finished organizing my signature images as best as I could.
    • Cleaned labels off of 70 baby food jars that I found off ebay for dirt cheap with free shipping. I ended up with sore joints in my fingers. But, it was well worth the effort. It took a lot of experimentation and I ultimately figured out WD-40 along with a wire brush (that does not scratch glass) worked best in removing the sticky residue from the jars themselves. These jars will be used for crafts. I believe the seller washed these jars (in a dishwasher). If you remove the labels and sticky residue before washing the jars, you will find it tons easier to remove the sticky residue.
    • I put more fabrics onto "bolts" throughout the month. It is a slow tedious job. But, I think it will be well worth the effort in the end.

    • I unpacked two more big boxes and put a lot of the stuff into the rummage sale as the stuff no longer fits our decor of house (it is a ranch house with craftsman style stuff). Plus, I am being extreme in trying to live simple. We do not need all that stuff.
  • Other

    • Filed Income Tax Returns. I do not know why I procrastinate because it really is not that hard to do and I have been doing this myself for years.
    • We spent a weekend in Fredericksburg, Texas for our 20th anniversary. We had a very good time and I would say it was a success because Dan mentioned that he did not think about work or the house once. We went to Wild Seed Farms, did shopping on Main Street, went antiquing and attended the Texas VW Classic Show. I had a wonderful weekend and I believe Dan had a good time too.
    • I have been happiest outside this spring. So, when I am feeling well, I am out there weeding and tending to my garden while watching the cats who love to be outside too.

      I have been harvesting strawberries. It appears that I have temporarily won the war against the ants. We recently harvested a decent pile of red potatoes. The Yukon gold potatoes are growing and will be ready to harvest in several weeks. The onions (red and yellow), garlic, carrots and peppers are all growing wonderfully and will soon be ready to harvest.

      I also have pickling cucumbers and some melons growing. There are a variety of herbs in pots along with some peas and beans because I ran out of bedding space!

      Due to the successful harvest of red potatoes. We will be building another potato bed this fall/winter simply because we want a larger harvest. Ha! We will also be building two more regular garden beds. I have always envisioned a total of four beds and with this successful gardening season, I am really wanting four! I am already thinking about what plants I could grow this fall and will need to do some research into fall gardening.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Feline Friday {Amongst Bluebonnets}

You see a lot of pictures of kids among bluebonnets during the spring time. For some families, it is a tradition to find a field every year to get their pictures taken. Fortunately, I do not need to take my "kids" anywhere because we have tons of bluebonnets on our land.

I first snapped Abby Gail which was a spontaneous shoot as she was already amongst the bluebonnets. I realized a while later that I could try getting some decent ones of both Chessie and Gracie amongst the bluebonnets. I was very happy with the results considering cats are not cooperative subjects to photograph especially Chessie.

Chessie {Miller}; almost 17 years old

{To see a larger image, go here.}

Gracie {Miller}; six years old

{To see a larger image, go here.}

Abby Gail; almost one year old

{To see a larger image, go here.}

Note: All pictures were taken on April 21, 2014.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Winning Love

  • On April 10, 2014, I was notified that I won a $25 gift certificate to Fat Quarter Shop from the Fresh Lemon Quilts blog. This online shop happens to be one of my favorite online fabric stores! I have a wish list on their site and did some serious heavy duty shopping when they had a free shipping on $40 or more deal going on. :-)

  • On April 18th, I was notified via email that I won some Northcott strips from the Choo Choo Skadoo Quilts blog. Needless to say, I was shocked. It was a very good surprise!