Trying To Stay Cool With The Hodgepodge…

We took a break, last week, from The Hodgepodge, but we’re back!  Thanks to our hostess, Joyce, for keeping this fun meme alive and well, even during a crazy and very busy summer!  Speaking of summer,  I don’t know about your neck of the woods, but it has been HOT in our ours!

These days, I never know if I will be able to see “the Hodgepodge Linky” or not, on Wednesdays.  If I can’t see it, I have no idea who is playing, so forgive me if I don’t visit.  I depend on Joyce’s comments to see who’s playing along, and not everybody leaves a comment.

1. It’s officially summer (in the northern hemisphere anyway). Which summer month is best and why?

I like the month of June best, because it’s mine and Ed’s anniversary month, lots of fresh garden vegetables are ready for picking, and the weather isn’t insanely hot, yet.  However, this year has been an exception, as far as the weather goes.  We’ve already had several days when the temperatures topped 100 degrees!  I can’t help but wonder what July and August will bring our way.

2. Can you swim? How did you learn? June 27th is National Sunglasses Day. How many pair do you own?

I can tread water, but I don’t classify that as swimming.  If somebody pushed me into the pool, I’d probably panic and drown!  I absolutely hate getting water in my face, too.

I only own one pair of sunglasses because I have to wear prescription sunglasses.  I do have a second pair that clip over my regular eye glasses, but I rarely use those.

3. What characteristic do you judge most harshly in yourself? How about in others?

I tend to be overly critical, at times, and I shouldn’t be.  Strangely enough, I dislike this characteristic most in others, as well.

4. Robert Frost wrote the now well known poem entitled The Road Not Taken. What’s a road (literal or figurative) you’ve always wanted to travel, and where do you hope it takes you?

I’ve always been intrigued by “The Seven Mile Bridge” in the Florida Keys, so that’s a road I think I’d like to travel.  I would certainly hope it would take me from one place to another, and keep me out of the ocean 🙂

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photo via Google

5. Popsicles-yay or nay? If you answered yay, what’s your favorite flavor?

Yes, I love Popsicles, especially when it’s hot!  My favorite flavor is red, or the red/white/blue kind.  This reminds me, I need to replenish my supply!

6. Brexit-on a scale of 1-10 how knowledgeable are you on what’s involved here? (1=very knowledgeable and 10=what’s Brexit) Is this news you’ll follow or is it something you think won’t impact your life in any way shape or form?

Okay, I guess I’m a 10.  What’s Brexit?  Update: I wasn’t familiar with the term “Brexit, but I do know about the exit.  We’ve been following, mostly because of the stock market fall.

7. Share a favorite song on your summer play list.

“Knee Deep” by Zac Brown Band is my favorite (and I made a montage of some of my favorite beach pics, set to it.)  I’ve share it before, but it’s been a while.

 

Random:

Ed and I are entering the final phases of our canning season, and we’re glad!  On Monday, we spent 13 hours working with vegetables!  We’ve had a another successful year, but I think our proudest accomplishment has to be our tomatoes!  After trying, unsuccessfully, for four years, we finally grew some tomatoes!  These are all ours 🙂

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Here’s a picture of the sunflowers blooming in our garden, too.  I love my garden flowers!

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They’ve really taken a beating with the high temperatures, but they’ve bloomed their hearts out!

Published in: on June 29, 2016 at 6:39 am  Comments (6)  
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A ‘Taxing’ Wednesday Hodgepodge…

Hello, and welcome to The Wednesday Hodgepodge.  As always, thank you so much to our gracious hostess, Joyce, for providing another set of ‘taxing’ questions 🙂  Just kidding, Joyce!  Without further delay, let’s get right to today’s questions and my answers, shall we?

1. What’s the last thing you did that could be described as ‘taxing’?

That’s a ‘no brainer’, working in our vegetable garden!  It’s taken us several days to get everything planted, now there’s the process of keeping it watered, fertilized, and as weed-free as possible, while it grows.  It can be quite a ‘taxing’ process, sometimes.

2. If you could plant a garden of anything, what would be in it?

We did plant a garden, and I wouldn’t change a thing, even if I could plant anything!  We have planted onions, potatoes, three kinds of peas, three kinds of beans, okra, corn, squash, cucumbers, cabbage, lettuce, tomatoes, carrots, peppers, watermelons, gourds, and two rows of zinnias and sunflowers!  Whew!  What more could I possibly ask for?

3. April 10-16 is National Library Week…will you celebrate with a visit to your nearest library? When did you last make a trip to the library? What are y!ou reading right now? What’s one title on your want-to-read list?

No, I won’t be going to the library this week.  The last time I made a trip to the library was probably six years ago.  Occasionally, I used to accompany my daughter and granddaughter to “story time” on Wednesdays, but then my granddaughter grew up.

As for reading, I’m still making my way through “The Guardian”, by Nicholas Sparks.  I have dozens of books on the shelf, waiting to be read, and several on my Kindle, but I may read Dolly Pardon’s autobiography, entitled “Dolly”, next.

4. Share a saying or an old wives tale you heard while growing up, you believed to be true or that you paid attention to ‘just in case’?

I always heard, and observed, the “no swimming immediately after eating” rule.  We waited about thirty minutes after eating before swimming.  I never open an umbrella indoors, either–just in case it might bring bad luck.

5. Are you a fan of onions? Garlic? Ginger? What’s a dish you love that contains one, two or all three items listed?

I like onions, but I don’t consider myself a huge fan of them.  I don’t care much for garlic or ginger, at all.  My favorite dish containing onions is “fried onion rings” (wouldn’t ya’ know), but I rarely eat them.

6. Where does nurturing end and indulging begin? What are some skills or qualities you think a person needs to posses in order to be viewed as mature?

That’s a good question, one I’m not sure I have the answer to, but I do think some parents of teenagers, and even young adults, fail to see [and draw] the line between nurturing and indulging.  As a result, we see “needy” adults, who have trouble standing on their own two feet, even late into life, sometimes.

Foremost, I think a person needs to be responsible to be viewed as mature.  Responsible for conducting themselves properly, responsible for taking care of their things, and responsible for handling money properly, etc.  They also need to be held responsible for the consequences of not being responsible.

7. What leading figure in any field would you like to hear speak, and why?

I can’t think of anyone, at this particular time!  However, I do remember, way back in the day, wishing I could hear Billy Graham speak, in person.

Random:

I’ve neglected to mention what I found in the hen house the other day.  Imagine my surprise when I went out there, early one morning, and saw this:

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All of the sudden, in my mind, I kept hearing the farmer [at Tractor Supply] saying “Be sure to watch out for snakes in your hen house!”  It has been four years since I met that farmer, and I have to admit, I’d grown complacent.

I called for Ed, who was feeding the cats, and said, “I need some help!” I didn’t run away, like I usually do, but I did go into the house to grab my camera. After my picture session, Ed caught the snake and “relocated” it–over near my storage shed.  Gee, thanks, honey!  Needless to say, I’ve loaded my storage shed with fresh moth balls, to, hopefully, repel snakes.

Published in: on April 13, 2016 at 7:43 am  Comments (8)  
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A Few Friday Fragments…

I’ve already mentioned, in a previous post, the two pet losses we suffered, last week, and the sick, ‘egg bound’ chicken we dealt with, but I didn’t mention the other sick cat we’re dealing with, now.  His name is “Drake” (another shelter rescue), but I’m not sure how old he is.  I know he’s older than eleven, because he was fully grown when I brought him home in 2004. I suppose caring for aged cats will become a way of life, for a while, since most of our cats are now over the age of ten.  We still have eleven cats left–but, eleven years ago, there were twenty-two of them!

When it rains it pours, and that’s exactly what it did at our house, on Easter Sunday, therefore, we couldn’t have our usual egg hunt.  The grandchildren were really disappointed, but I’ve already mentioned that in an earlier post, too.  However, the grandchildren were able to gather at our house, on Saturday afternoon, to dye some eggs.

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Unfortunately, all four ‘grands’ had already been to church egg hunts, earlier in the day, and weren’t really  interested in dying eggs.  They were more interested in playing with each other outside!  They colored three or four eggs each, then off they went.  Evan, our youngest grandchild, (who is 2 1/2) wasn’t interested in coloring eggs at all, but he was interested in holding the finished products!

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Due to the rain, we didn’t get to make our usual outside Easter family picture, this year.  In fact, Ed and I didn’t have our pictures taken at all.  We were too busy doing kitchen duty to worry about such things. Everybody else had their picture taken, at some point during the day.

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  four-year-old Chase taking his mom and older brother’s picture

Although we didn’t have our egg hunt and we didn’t get our picture taken, at least nobody ended up with a broken arm, like last year.

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Ed and I had overnight guests, on the Monday after Easter. My brother and his wife stopped by on their way back to Florida.  As always, we enjoyed their visit, even though it was a short one.  We had Easter left-overs for supper.

On Wednesday, I had to make a trip into the city to visit the gynecologist for my yearly checkup.  I spent two and one-half hours in the doctor’s office–then had two pelvic exams, by two different people! (Talk about cruel and unusual punishment!)  When I gave permission for a medical student to “shadow” my doctor during my exam, I didn’t realize the doctor was going to ask my permission for the student to repeat the pelvic exam, too!  Talk about an awkward moment–it was.

Speaking of awkward moments, yesterday, I was trying to help Ed rake some pine straw, for the flower beds, when I looked down and discovered something that looked an awful lot like poison ivy touching my lower leg!  I quickly put down the rake, and went inside to find my bottle of Technu.  I scrubbed my leg with Technu twice!  I washed my leg so much, I scrubbed off my self-tanner!   I’m hoping (and praying) I don’t break out, because I’m terribly allergic to poison ivy.

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“the salad table”

I think I’ve finally discovered “my kind of gardening”.  It requires no bending! Ed bought a cute little gardening table for me at the end of last summer.  I recently filled it with all kinds of seeds and plants, so I jokingly refer to it as “the salad table”.  You’ll find lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, and radishes growing in “the salad table”.  It will be interesting to see how it turns out.

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left to right – onions, potatoes, garden peas

Our regular garden is coming along, slowly.  The green beans, squash, cucumbers, carrots, and okra are all coming up. The tomato, cabbage, and lettuce plants we planted are doing okay, but they don’t seem to be as healthy as in other years. Several plants have died, for some reason, and I hate that. Meanwhile, the Irish potatoes, garden peas, and onions seem to be doing fine.

It’s supposed to be a rainy weekend here, so I guess it will be a restful weekend for us. They are predicting some stormy weather for Saturday, including possible hail, so I’m concerned about the garden.

Today is April Fool’s Day, and is also my late father-in-law’s birthday.  He always liked to joke around and say he was “an April fool”.  He was no fool, but he was a WWII veteran, and a good man who would help anybody in any way he could.  He loved his wife and family dearly. He was also a very good cook who made the best fried chicken I’ve ever tasted. He could take one fryer and feed a dozen people!

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Happy Birthday, in heaven, “Grandpa”.

 

 

 

Published in: on April 1, 2016 at 10:04 am  Comments (3)  
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Catching Up On Monday…

Lately, this blog seems like a long, lost friend that I need to visit more often.  More and more, I’m finding it more difficult to make my way over here to blog. Sometimes, I’m just not feeling it, and then when I am, I have other things to do.  Such as the following…

The past week went by in a whirl of activity.  There’s something about the arrival of warm, sunny days that makes me want to clean and spruce up the place!  Therefore, the beginning of last week found me stripping old wax off the kitchen floor, and applying new wax.  I know, waxing floors is a dying activity, but my floors aren’t the no wax kind–yet!  It took both Ed and myself to get the task done, but we made it!  We were so inspired by having a clean, shiny kitchen floor, the following day we began shampooing carpets, and spent the next two days doing that!  Unfortunately, I think I hurt my back, in the process, so it’s been aching for several days. Live and learn.

In addition to cleaning floors, all week, I was trying to get ready for a yard sale, on Saturday.  I’d spend a couple of hours, here and there, working on that.  Meanwhile, Ed finally got started building a small shelter to store his lawnmower under. I worry a bit about him, it’s his first real project since his heart attack, in October.

Ed and I had our yard sale, on Saturday, along with our daughter and her husband.  We held the sale at Ed’s parents’ house, and could not have asked for a prettier day!  The weather was cool and foggy, at first, but that soon gave way to glorious blue, sunny skies.  We didn’t make a lot of money  because we had our stuff priced cheap, but we got rid of a lot of stuff!  At one point, we gave a chair away, and when the chair wouldn’t fit into the lady’s car, our son put the chair in my van and delivered it to her house!

Prior to the yard sale, I worried about “Trouble”, the cat who lives alone at Ed’s parents’ house, because  I was afraid she might get hit by a car, with all of the traffic coming to the sale. However, I think all of the yard sale activity was more than “Trouble” could stand, so she quickly disappeared until the end of the day. “Trouble” did have a close call earlier in the week, though,  when she ran onto the highway to greet Ed as he was coming to feed her.  My blood runs cold just thinking about it!

Speaking of “Trouble”, she was in “hog heaven”, on Friday night, when Ed and I took a break from pricing stuff, and shared a pizza at his parents’ house.  We let her in the house with us, and she sat at the table and begged for scraps from our pizza, which we gladly shared.  Then she wandered all around the house, looking at the boxes sitting all around.  The whole situation makes me sad. Four years is a long time to live alone, at an empty house, but, at least, she has the visit from “the man with the can” to look forward to each day.

In other news, Ed and I were tickled pink when we discovered that our garden peas have sprouted!  There’s a beautiful row of little green plants now decorating the row!  We’re hoping they will soon be  joined by some potato sprouts.  Our seedlings, growing in cups, are doing quite well, in spite of the fact that I dropped one of the trays, last week.  What a mess that made, but the plants all seemed to have survived, believe it or not.

We managed to have some great time, with family, on Saturday, when all the rest of our gang met up following the yard sale.  The weather was so nice, the adults sat outside and watched the grandchildren all playing together.  Actually, our oldest son, and perhaps the biggest kid of all, was pretending to be the wrestling announcer (complete with a karaoke machine), while each child took a turn strutting up the steps and getting onto the trampoline they were using as a wrestling ring!  If I hadn’t been so tired, I surely would have taken some video of “the show”.

As suppertime neared, our youngest son volunteered to go to town and pick up some food for supper.  Praise the Lord for him, because this woman sure didn’t feel like cooking!  I think everyone enjoyed the food and the fellowship, I know I did, even if I had to enjoy much of it from my spot on the couch!

The rest of the weekend passed, and all too soon, it was time to change our clocks–all twelve of them!  Yes, Ed and I actually have twelve clocks!  Oh, how I dislike this time of the year, when the time changes!  In addition to adjusting all of those clocks, I’ll spend the next month trying to get my body clock readjusted.  On that note, I’ll just say “Have a happy Monday” and get ready for my appointment at the dermatologist’s office.  Fun times–not!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Published in: on March 14, 2016 at 7:35 am  Comments (3)  
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Hello Again, Monday…

I don’t know how we managed to be so blessed, here in Gooseneck, but we have experienced two beautiful weekends in a row–during the month of February, no less!  That’s practically unheard of, but we’ve enjoyed both weekends–a lot!  Sunny skies and mild temperatures were ours for the taking, so we took advantage of both.

Ed and I kick-started the weekend, on Friday, with a visit to the hospital where Ed used to be employed, only because it was time for my yearly mammogram.  Actually, it was three months past time for my exam, but I had other problems to deal with back in December, such as basal cell carcinoma and Moh’s surgery.

Anyway, Ed visited with some of his former coworkers, at the hospital, while I went to  the torture chamber  have my mammogram done.  I always get a bit uneasy at mammogram time, because of my past experiences with them. I’ve had to go back and have spot magnification films done two different years, and was even sent to a surgeon for a consultation a few years back. Apparently, I have a tendency to have something called “calcifications”, which sometimes require a closer look.

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While we were out and about, on Friday, Ed and I decided we’d go ahead and vote early for Tuesday’s primary.  Sadly, I can’t say there’s any candidate I feel 100% confident about electing to lead our country, but I voted for the person I think is the best [of what’s available].  Sigh.

After voting, Ed and I drove out to the cemetery and picked up the Christmas arrangements from our parents’ graves.  Yes, I’m sad to say, Christmas arrangements were still on the graves of our loved ones, at the end of February, but we replaced them with new spring arrangements, I made myself!

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P1010397While visiting the cemetery, Ed and I marveled about his parents being buried right in the middle of a bunch of family and friends.  Seriously, there’s family or close friends buried all around them.  We wonder if this was a planned thing, or just coincidence.  My family is buried a good distance away from Ed’s family, but in the same cemetery.

Our oldest son, and his family came over on Friday night, as well as our daughter and her family. Due to sickness, we hadn’t seen our oldest son in two whole weeks!  It was good to catch up with everyone again.  The grandchildren had a good time playing together, and even made some awesome castles/towers out of building blocks.  It’s always great to see kids being kids.  There’s a picture of one, below, but it really doesn’t show the great details.

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Ed spent most of the weekend working on a new project.  He bought me three [real] gourd birdhouses, as one of my Christmas gifts, because I like gourd birdhouses.  However, after Christmas, we discovered we needed more than three gourd houses to start a “purple martin community”.  I wasn’t able to find anymore reasonably priced ‘real’ gourd birdhouses, so I bought six plastic gourds from eBay.  We decided to make a pole [for the gourds] out of an old clothesline post that used to belong to Ed’s mama.  It turned out to be a lot of work!

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Ed built the dwelling, the question is, “Will any purple martins come?” (those are decoys on top of the pole) I’m skeptical, because of where we had to locate our pole (near our pear tree), but I’m thinking some kind of little bird will take advantage of these “high rise” dwellings.  My ‘real’ gourds still remain in the Christmas bag.  I’m not sure what we’ll do with those, yet.

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About three-fourths of the garden seeds we planted, last weekend, have sprouted.  It’s SO exciting to see something growing again!  Our plans, for this week, are to try to get some potatoes and garden peas planted.  Our onions look rather lonely, growing in the garden, all by themselves.

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Our chickens have gone crazy laying eggs again.  We’ve been getting five or six eggs daily.  Some days we even get seven.  Our chickens have also gone crazy in other ways, too…

I wish I had a picture of what I saw, on Sunday afternoon!  I’d left the baby gate down, and when I came around the house, and up the steps to the front porch…there sat a large red hen, stretched out, sunning herself on the rug right in front of our door!  It was such a funny sight to see!  I did manage to find a picture [courtesy of Google] of a rooster sunning himself in the yard, just so you could get an idea of what I saw…Chicken2

I’ll leave you with that image in your head!  We have some strange happenings around our house, sometimes!  Have a great Monday, everyone!

 

 

Published in: on February 29, 2016 at 8:30 am  Comments (5)  
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A “Spring Fever” Kind Of Weekend…

We had one of those rare February weekends that could make me think spring is just around the corner…if I didn’t know better.  The days were sunny and the temperatures were mild.  I’m not sure what Sunday’s high was, but I know it was somewhere in the mid to upper 70’s.  Just about perfect!

On Friday, Ed and I began our day by going to get new driver’s licenses because our address recently changed when we moved our mailbox.  After having our pictures taken for our new licenses, we were both kind of depressed.  Why are the pictures [on drivers licenses] always so awful? We both kept asking, do I really look that old?

After the license ordeal, Ed came home and decided to cut down a tree that needed to come down.  We’ve had two dead trees fall [near our yard] within the last month.  Fortunately, the damage has been minimal. This particular tree, Ed cut down, was still living, but was too close to our carport, so it needed to go.  I’d like to say the tree came down without incident, but the edge of it caught the edge of the roof of our storage house. Ed now has a couple of ‘dents’ to repair.

We got a pleasant surprise, on Friday night, when our youngest son and his family came over and brought supper for all of us.  What a great way to kick off the weekend!  However, I guess Ed’s and my company must have gotten a little boring toward the end of the evening, because Jennifer, Evan, and Brad went to sleep [while watching television] a little before 10!  Somewhere around 11, Ed and I turned off the television and just left them sleeping in the living room. Unfortunately, they were gone, by the time we woke up, on Saturday morning.

I still owed Ed a German Chocolate cake for his Valentine’s Day gift, so I began my Saturday in the kitchen, baking.  While I baked the cake, Ed hauled off a truckload of “junk” that had been accumulating around our house over the past few months.  Things like an old yard swing, an old dishwasher, an old gas grill, etc. Ed wasn’t very happy when I asked him to haul off some of his ‘treasures’, but he did it anyway–with the promise of a piece of German Chocolate cake, after he did.

Saturday afternoon was so pretty, we spent most of it outside.  There’s not much Ed enjoys more than starting a fire and burning something, and that’s just what he did!  Two years ago, we had forty-three pine trees cut down from around our house.  We’re still trying to burn the last of them, so Ed worked on that for most of the afternoon.  He burned a lot of trash, but he sure made a lot of smoke.

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Ed officially began our 2016 gardening season a few days ago, on February 12.  He made one row in the garden, and planted 50 onion ‘sets’ on it.  Onions are always one of the first things we plant, and, since then, I’ve been dying to plant something else, so… Ed and I made time to plant the seeds for our tomato, pepper, lettuce, and cabbage plants, this weekend, too. We planted them in styrofoam cups where they will sprout and continue to live until the danger of frost is over, in about six weeks.

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Planting seeds in cups is much easier, this year, thanks to the neat new gardening table Ed bought on sale at the end of last summer.  (I sneaked a picture of him while he was putting it together.)  Using the table eliminated the need to bend over so much, while doing the planting.  Now, if we could just find some easy way to get those sprouted plants into the ground that’s not easy on our backs!

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We’ll also plant some vegetables inside of the gardening table, once the weather is warm enough, but, for now, the table makes a great place to pot seeds or re-pot old plants.  I can’t wait to use it again!

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All too soon, the weekend was over, and we decided to end our beautiful weekend by firing up our grill and our fire pit–both at the same time! While the sun went down behind the trees, on Sunday evening, we dined on grilled “turkey burgers” in lawn chairs beside the fire.  Our daughter and her family saw us sitting outside, and decided to come over and join us.  They brought some hot dogs and we all sat around the fire after we finished eating.  Of course, we had to end our first cookout of 2016, with a few s’mores, and they were delicious, if I must say so myself 🙂

I’m already looking forward to many more weekends just like this one! Yes, I guess you could say, I’ve already caught “spring fever”.  I say, “Bring it on!”  If I’m lucky, I won’t mess up my back, and can actually enjoy being outside, this year.

Happy Monday!

 

 

 

Published in: on February 22, 2016 at 8:48 am  Comments (5)  
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Friday Fragments…

It’s been a fairly uneventful week here in my neck of the woods, but, these days, I consider ‘uneventful’ a good thing!  I’m trying to get back into the habit of blogging more regularly, so here goes…

Ed and I are officially finished with the gardening season of 2015, and it feels SO good!  We canned the last of our tomatoes on Wednesday.  I was bummed when one of our pints of tomatoes didn’t seal, but that happens sometimes.  In all of our canning experiences, that was only our third mishap–and we’ve canned many jars of fruits and vegetables during the past three years.

Ed’s already mowed down almost all of the old garden plants.  Only my zinnias, some old corn stalks, a few peanuts, and some watermelons remain.  We plan to try some of Ed’s ‘home-grown’ boiled peanuts, this weekend!

Ed had a doctor’s appointment, on Tuesday, for his three month’s checkup.  We use the same primary care physician, and while Ed was seeing the doctor, he happened to ask Ed about me and my back problems.  Ed explained that I had been unable to get in to see a specialist, yet.  He went on to explain how the Prednisone I’d been prescribed on my last visit had helped my sciatica, until it eventually wore off.  The doctor then sent me a prescription for another round of Prednisone, to get me through until I can see a neurologist, on July 21.  God bless him!

We’re in the midst of another heat wave.  The rain has left us, and our temperatures are reaching back into the high nineties, again.  Hello, summer!  By 9 o’clock, each day, it’s already hot, but not as hot as it is by 3 o’clock!!!  I’m keeping a high velocity fan blowing in the chickens’ pen, in an effort to keep them as comfortable as possible.  Happy chickens lay more eggs!  Ours must be pretty content because our current egg count, since January, is 988 eggs from nine hens!

Our daughter and her husband FINALLY got their a/c repaired, yesterday.  They’d been relying on a smaller window unit for over a week and a half, since their a/c drain tray  to the central unit had developed a leak and flooded their ceiling.  Did I mention the entire family had been sleeping in the living room for a week and a half, as well?

Last Friday, Ed and I were in a Wal-mart Neighborhood Market when we saw somebody we hadn’t seen in almost two years.  Does anybody remember me blogging about Alex, the little baby boy our daughter used to keep?  Alex who was deaf, but got cochlear implants during the two years our daughter was keeping him?  Alex, whose mother got cancer and died this past March, at the age of 30?  Well, Ed and I saw Alex, who happened to be shopping with his grandparents!  He’s grown taller, but he still looks the same.  Believe it or not, little Alex turned 4 in February. That little fellow sure has been through a lot in just four short years, but, as usual, he was wearing his smile.

There’s a birthday celebration in the family, this weekend.  Our youngest, Brad, will turn 30 tomorrow.  How in the world did that happen?  If all goes well, the family will be gathering this evening to help him celebrate.  Because mamas like to look back and remember ‘the good ole’ days’, I’m re-sharing the birthday video I made for Brad on his 28th birthday.

Happy birthday, son. Just like the words of the song say, “You make your mother proud.”  I love you!

Published in: on July 10, 2015 at 7:29 am  Comments (4)  
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What A Week That Turned Out To Be!

I’m sorry I’ve been MIA from the blogging world, again, but after I finish explaining the week we’ve just experienced, I’m sure you’ll understand.  Blogging has been about the last thing on my mind, lately.

Last week began with a doctor’s appointment for me, and one for Ed, as well–together.  As in, we shared an exam room together.  This was our second experience of sharing an exam room and the doctor at the same time.  I’m not really sure I like it, but I went along with it since it was Ed’s idea.  Whenever we share the doctor and exam room, it seems like we should get a discount or something, don’t you think?

Anyway, Ed and I both had fairly good checkups, but when we went to pay our bills, we discovered Medicare had neglected to send Ed a new card showing that he has part A and B on it.  Oops!  Ed wasn’t able to use the card he had.  Next, when Ed decided to try getting his prescriptions filled through mail order, there was a glitch with that, too.

Tuesday, after making several phone calls trying to get Ed’s Medicare and mail order pharmacy business in order, we decided to plant the rest of our garden.  It took us most of the day, but we got everything planted–by hand, with the exception of Ed’s row of peanuts.  And we said we were going to plant less this year…but that didn’t happen, of course.

Let me stop here and mention the fact that I’ve been experiencing some back stiffness, off and on, for several weeks, especially after sitting for a while.  Stooping over to plant all those garden seeds hasn’t helped the stiffness any. Then, I stepped into a shallow hole in the yard, on Tuesday afternoon, which jarred me just a bit, but I didn’t think much about it at the time.  Perhaps I should have.

On Wednesday, I woke up to a weird sensation in my left leg.  My leg felt tingly, like it was asleep, and it continued feeling that way the entire day.  Ed and I needed to do some work in the flowerbed, next to the house, so I ignored the feeling and went about my business.  A girl’s gotta’ do what she’s gotta’ do–or so  I thought.

Do you know how one job sometimes leads to another job?  Well, that’s what happened to us, on Wednesday?  When we started getting ready to plant some new plants, we decided we needed to put a  new coat of paint on the lattice underpinning surrounding the bottom of our house.  We spent most of Wednesday and Thursday painting and repairing that lattice!

By Thursday morning, my leg was feeling worse.  The numbness I’d been feeling had been replaced by what felt like occasional muscle spasms.  By then, I was pretty sure I was experiencing the symptoms of a ‘pinched nerve’, since I’ve had one in my neck before.  Oh, but that wasn’t the worst part of the day!  While removing and painting the lattice underpinning, that day, we discovered evidence of termites!  Not actual termites, just where they’d been dining on some of the lattice.  Then, later,  when Ed removed the dirt from a barrel planter, sitting beside our house, he discovered termites had eaten the bottom completely out of the barrel–and were still dining on the sides of it! There was nothing left to do but call an exterminator!

On Friday, I decided I’d rest my back (and leg) and see if it made any difference.  I spent most of the day on the couch, but I couldn’t tell that it made much difference.  As long as I sat still my leg felt fine, but whenever I walked any distance (like across the room) my leg began to have spasms that hurt like hell.  (Pardon my language.)

While I was resting, Ed called the exterminator, who came to check out our house for termites on Friday afternoon. Upon his initial inspection, the exterminator told us we had an even larger problem than termites! (he didn’t actually see any visible termites under the house)  He informed us we have mold growing under our house, which if left untreated, will soften the wood and eventually cause the floor of our house to go bad!  (Say it ain’t so!  That’s exactly what happened to the floor in our old house!)  Then the exterminator explained to Ed that his company is in the business of treating and preventing mold, in addition to treating for termites.  He explained the three-day process, then gave Ed an estimate for the cost of the services of treating for mold and for termites.  Ouch!  Let’s just say, it’s going to take two full months of Ed’s former pay to fund this project!  Ed told the exterminator we’d take the weekend and decide what we’re going to do, but as we see it, we really don’t have a choice.  We know how the story ends if we do nothing.

For now, I’m still laid up with this ‘pinched nerve’ thing which doesn’t really seem to be getting better.  I’m going to give it a few more days [of rest] before I give in and go to the doctor, because I already know, from experience, what seeing a doctor will entail, and I really don’t want to go there! I’m going to increase my dosage of Nsaids, continue resting for a few more days, and hope and pray for the best.

One funny thing has come out of this ‘pinched nerve’ situation, though.  Ed went to his mom’s house and got her four-legged cane for me.  He said if I’d use the cane whenever I walk, it will take the pressure off of my bad leg, therefore, helping with the pain.  Well, I must be the most uncoordinated person in the world because we’ve gotten more than a few good laughs over me trying to learn to walk with that cane! When I am able to use it correctly, Ed’s right, it helps.  The problem is using it correctly.  For me, it’s like patting my head and rubbing my stomach at the same time 🙂  I just don’t seem to be able to do it! Ha!

Have a great Monday!  As for me, I’ll be resting my back and trying to get the hang of this stupid cane–until Ed returns to his mom’s house and brings back her walker…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Published in: on April 13, 2015 at 7:44 am  Comments (6)  
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Foolin’ Around With The Hodgepodge…

Can you believe it?!  The month of April is already here!  The flowers are bloomin’, the birds are chirpin’, and the weather has warmed back up into the 80’s again.  Hello spring!  There’s a whole lotta’ stuff going on around here, so I’m going to go ahead and jump right into this week’s Hodgepodge.  Oh, but before I take the leap, I’d like to shout out a great big “THANK YOU” to our hostess, Joyce!  Thanks for all you do.

1. In honor of the date…when were you last sent on a ‘fool’s errand’?

It was probably last week, when I went on a desperate search for Brach’s  chicks and rabbits Easter candy (the ones that are made like those orange circus peanuts).  I went to several stores…and failed to find any.  I came to the conclusion, they must not make them anymore.

2. Peter Rabbit, Bugs Bunny, The Energizer Bunny, The Easter Bunny, Rabbit (Pooh’s friend), White Rabbit (of Wonderland fame), or the Trix Rabbit…which of these ‘famous’ rabbits can you best relate to right now?

Since we’ve been spending lots of time in the vegetable garden, recently, I’ll say Peter Rabbit!  We even have some lettuce and carrots growing, along with some cabbage, peas, onions, squash, tomatoes, and peppers.  The fun has begun!

3. When did you last find yourself scrambling to get something done? Explain.

Because of the chronic health issues I have, there are usually just as many bad days as there are good ones.  I’m always scrambling to get things done on the ‘good days’ because I don’t know how long they will last, or when they’ll come again.  Yesterday was a pretty good day, so I was scrambling to get as many things done as I could.

4. Last time you were up at the literal crack of dawn? Why? Last time you stayed up all night? Why?

I’m often awake at the crack of dawn, but try to make myself go back to sleep until shortly after seven.  Unfortunately, I had to get up at the crack of dawn twice, last week, due to early morning appointments!

I’m going through an ‘I can’t sleep phase’, at the moment, due to the reduction in my HRT.  Many nights you’ll find me watching television at 4 a.m.  The last time I remember staying up for twenty-four hours, on purpose, was with a sick parent, in the hospital, several years ago.

5. Crack a book, crack a bottle, crack a joke, crack an egg…which have you done most recently?

Our hens are laying 7 to 9 eggs daily, so we do a lot of egg cracking around our house–every day!  There are currently eight dozen eggs in our refrigerator, and I recently gave away 3 dozen!

6. What’s your favorite part of a typical weekend? Tell us why that’s so.

My favorite part of a typical weekend is visiting with our family.  Often, on Friday nights, our two grown children and their families, who live nearby, will come and spend time with us, and each other.  Usually, about every other weekend, our youngest son and his family, who live out of town, come to visit on either a Saturday or a Sunday.  When we are able to get all three children, and their families, under our roof, at the same time, it is crazy, crowded, and loud, but it is wonderful!  It just doesn’t get any better than that!

7. What’s something I’d find on a bookshelf in your home? Other than a book I mean!

I’ve dedicated an entire wall of our living room to bookshelves, because I like books–and I like to display things.  In addition to some books, you’ll find lots of framed family photos, a clock, and some curios–because I love my family photos and curios!

Random:

I always enjoyed watching  “Kim of Queens”, a show that used to air on Lifetime before it was canceled after the second season.  The show starred pageant coach (and former Miss Georgia), Kim Gravel, along with several home-grown Georgia beauties who were being coached by Kim, at the time of the show.   Kim’s studio, The Pageant Place, is located near Atlanta, but she coaches girls from all around Georgia. Now, I’m not much into pageants, but, on the show, Kim sure was great at finding diamonds in the rough and making them shine, so to speak–and she was funny!

Imagine my surprise, recently, when I ran into two of the former co-stars of the show, while shopping at Big Lots in nearby Vidalia.  I saw one of the pageant contestants,  named Marah, along with her mom, Angie!  (Angie was especially memorable because of her clashes with Kim during the course of the show.) Of course, I was too shy to approach them and say anything, but was thrilled to have seen a couple of actual [former] television ‘stars’.  What a small world we live in, huh?!

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Angie (the mom)

Marah

Marah (the daughter)

Published in: on April 1, 2015 at 8:02 am  Comments (7)  
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T’was The Monday Before Easter…

I’ve been MIA from blog land for a few days…again.  I continue to find it more difficult to blog lately.  It seems like there’s always something else to do, or I don’t feel like writing.

I don’t know about your neck of the woods, but it was a chilly weekend where we live!  After several days of  wearing shorts, we had to drag our coats out again 😦  We also had to drag out buckets to cover our squash plants out in the garden.  We woke up to a light dusting of frost on Sunday morning!  Other than being cold, the weekend was sunny and nice.  Both afternoons warmed up enough to require only a long-sleeved shirt.

Ed and I got a nice surprise, on Friday afternoon, when our son, Brad, came by for a surprise visit!  He was working nearby, got off early, and decided to pay us a visit before heading home.  (His wife, Jennifer, was working late.) What a great way to kick off the weekend, and I needed the distraction because I wasn’t feeling my best that day!

I seem to be having more and more days when I’m not feeling my best.  My lowering levels of hormones have caused my rheumatoid arthritis to become active again.  I’m experiencing more fatigue and joint pain/stiffness. I’m moving like a little old lady, these days, especially after sitting for a while! The lower hormone levels are causing me to have mood swings, as well.  At the moment, my moods seem to alternate between mad and sad, with very little glad in between.  (Poor Ed!)  This is not a good way to be!  I’m hoping and praying this will soon pass.

Ed continues to stay as ‘busy as a little beaver’ doing things around the house.  It’s nice to have him around to fix things.  I always have a ‘honey do’ list for him!  He doesn’t like to stay inside, but he’ll tackle any outside projects with a smile.  Today’s project is getting our tomato and pepper plants set out in the garden–before the rain that’s expected this afternoon!  I should mention, we’re throwing caution to the wind by going against the advice of the Farmer’s Almanac and planting today.  We’ll see how it goes.

This is shaping up to be a busy week, leading up to Easter.  There’s a lot to be done between now and then, so I’d better get busy.  Have a great Monday!

Published in: on March 30, 2015 at 9:03 am  Comments (3)  
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