Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day

Are you flying the Flag today?

God Bless our troops and all of our veterans!

In Flanders Fields
By: Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD (1872-1918)
Canadian Army

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Little Notions

Little Notions
May 28, 2010

I believe that I am going to ask my guy to drive me to the grocery store today (because I am still having little dizzy spells). He probably won't be happy about it, but considering the alternative of going by himself, I think he might warm up to the idea of just being a helper.

I just love NyQuil and ibuprofen! And, hey, antibiotics are great too!!

I am creating a fresh new look for my blog! Actually, I haven't done anything except think about it. But, hey, every creation has to start somewhere! Stay tuned.

I am grateful for Dr Bob T. The T stands for Terrific. House calls and all!

I am reading Sarah Palin's "Going Rogue". It is pretty interesting. I also read "Dear John" and "The Lucky One" both by Nicholas Sparks, this week. Recuperation and all.

Outside my cherries are ripe. And, they are 100% bird-peck free, thanks to my guy's brilliant use of aluminum foil.

In my kitchen is a whole lot of nothing. Two weeks of being in bed leads to one empty kitchen. And my family has not bothered to go to the store. They are just gimping along until I am well enough to take care of it. Although, two nights ago my guy took Becca to the computer store and on the way home they stopped at Vons. 3 doughnuts and 2 gallons of milk was all they came home with. And they were as happy as clams!

A photo thought about the neighbors:

These aren't really my neighbors. As a matter of fact, I didn't even take this photo in my own town. But we did spot them one morning a few weeks ago when we were out yard saling. Cute, huh?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Pneumonia is Bad

Yes it's true, pneumonia is very bad. I have have spent the last 12 days in bed, sicker than I have ever been in my life. And, I hope to never be that sick again!

Now, the care I received from my family....pitiful. These people that live here with me are NOT in any danger of being awarded Humanitarian of the Year!

A typical exchange went something like this:
(My Guy) "You want some tea or something?"
"That would be nice."
"What kind?"
"Green tea with a little honey and lemon."
Time passes and I hear all kinds of noise in the kitchen. Then he stomps back down the hall with the green tea in his hand.
"This is the only green tea I can find."
"That's the only one we have. What's wrong?"
(Grumpy face) "It says green tea WITH WILD PLUM."
"That's the one I want."
He stomps back to the kitchen.Time passes. He comes back.
"Do you want regular honey or raw honey."
"Raw honey I guess."
He leaves. Time passes. He comes back.
"Do you want one or two spoons full."
"Good grief. More like 1/4 of a spoon full."
"And you want lemon?"
"Yes please. A lot of lemon."
He leaves. Time passes.He finally comes back with a mug of barely warm tea balanced on a saucer that is also filled with tea, and 1/2 of a lemon (a meyer lemon, which he probably had to dig through all of the regular lemons to find that one little meyer lemon tucked in the back).
"You can squeeze the lemon in yourself."
"Thanks Honey, this is perfect."

(My youngest daughter)
"Becca, is that you?"
She sticks her head in my room.
"It stinks in here."
"Thanks Bec. I haven't seen you in several days."
"I know. I don't want to get sick."
"So you don't even check on me or anything."
"I know your still alive Mom. I can hear you breathing and coughing all the time. Even when you're sleeping your breathing is loud."

(My oldest daughter)
"Hi Mom. Just checking to see how you are. Bye." Beep

Where is the love?
Anyway, I hope that all of you out in blogland are happy, healthy and well cared for!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Little Notions

I got a message from one of my blog "followers" last week complaining about the fact that I am "very inconsistent" in my Little Notions posting. She said that people were going to stop reading my blog because I do not meet their expectations. Good grief! I didn't know that blogging was so structured. And Heaven forbid that I start disappointing people world wide with my inconsistencies!!
And, if anyone happens to run into my Firstborn, will you tell her that she should be nicer to her mother!

Little Notions
May 14, 2110

I believe in the power of chocolate chip cookies!

I just love dinner parties. Tonight we are having several friends over for a rib bbq. Yum!

I am inspired by other bloggers. There are so many creative things happening out there that I never knew anything about before I became a blogger myself. Who knew.

I am creating several string quilts. What fun! Actually, I had visions of all of my scraps disappearing in a matter of minutes. Sadly, that has not happened. I have already made 1 child-sized quilt, 4 1/2 baby quilts and 2 tote bags and I cannot tell that I have used a single thing out of those boxes!

I am grateful for the Lord's provision! My guy has been out of work for almost two weeks, which is always such a giant bummer. But several small jobs have fallen into place over the last few days. So, Praise the Lord!

Outside it has been such a beautiful day. The temperature is perfect. Things are blooming everywhere. The bees and birds a flitting around everywhere.Some things have already started turning brown, but there is still a lot of green. It is just lovely.

A photo thought about today's harvest of fruit and flowers.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Tragedy on the Farm

Ok, so we don't actually live on a farm. And this is not a real tragedy, like flooding and earthquakes and famine. But it is sad, and I don't really know what to do about it.

Remember the chicks?

Well, you might not know this, but the cute wears off of a chick in about 7-10 days.

This is what they look like this morning. A lot less cute, huh? That is not the tragic part. This is...

I have a handicapped chick! What am I supposed to do about this?? Her feet are all curled up and she walks on her "knee" joints with her feet and legs sticking straight out in front of her. Needless to say, she does not get around very well.

Another thing you might not know about chickens is that if there is a weak or sick chicken in the flock, the healthy ones will peck it to death. It is a fact that I really hate. So, I am concerned that this chick is up for elimination. And, even if these other hens are used to her and leave her alone as they get older, you can bet the rooster won't. When they get put out with him, it will be curtains for this hen.

So, when my little cowgirl came home last night I showed her the chick. When she was finally able to catch her breath after a hysterical fit of laughter, she said that I should just kill it. Right. Like I am going to be able to do that! Then, she offered to kill it for me.
Ok, here's the thing. What is the difference between killing something yourself and having it done at your request. Nothing, that's what. And how is it that my little daughter grew up to be a hardened killer. I just don't understand these things.

So, when my guy came home last night from the city council meeting I asked him about it. He went with his standard survival of the fittest crap, AGAIN.
"But, Honey, the other chickens are going to kill it".
"If it lives it lives".
"Honey, I was thinking that maybe you could make some little leg splints for it"....
"And maybe we could keep it by our bed where it is safe and warm"...
"And maybe with some physical therapy it could turn out like Forest Gump"...
"Ok, but we have to do something. What's your big idea, and none of this 'if it lives it lives' business".
"How about you call Theresa and offer her the opportunity to have a unique experience. That is probably one of her chicks anyway".
Giggle giggle. "That is a great idea!"

So, if any of you are tyring to get ahold of Theresa, and it seems like she is screening all of her calls, you'll know why.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Blue Jays are Bad

Ok, so here's the thing. Last year I had a few blue jays hanging around my house. They were pretty funny to watch, and even funnier to listen to. The little song birds would be outside my window just singing their hearts out. Then the blue jays would chime in with this terrible squawking. But, it was wholehearted, and hysterical. They also loved to squeeze themselves into my miniature birdbath, two or three at a time, and fluff up their feathers and fling up the water all while squawking away. It was so entertaining that I decided to start feeding them so they would hang around.

That was a BIG mistake.

Shortly afterwards, I noticed that they had an affinity for my apple tree. THEN, I noticed that they were systematically stripping the little apples off the limbs! Every single one!! Well, the feeder disappeared and was replaced by a little pile of rocks. But, they had grown used to my house and had no intention of moving on. Instead, they started gorging themselves on chicken food. So, I got my guy to put a smaller gauged wire over the pen to keep them out. Finally, winter came and they were gone.

Now they are back. They must have remembered me. The lady with a weak arm and a bad aim. And, they are persistent enough to work little bits of food out of the songbird feeders. So the pay off is pretty good. But this morning, owwwwww, they went too far!
I had fed the hens and gathered the eggs. I put the eggs down so I could plant a few things in the garden while I was outside. I heard a funny noise behind me and turned around to see them on the bowl of eggs, chowing down!

So, here's the thing. I had a LOT of torn open eggs last year. My guy and I would stand at the nesting boxes looking at all of the broken shells and wonder what was going on. Now, we have had hens peck their eggs before, but this was different. I was convinced I had a snake or some other awful thing out there eating the eggs. And even worse, I was afraid that one day I would open the nesting boxes to gather the eggs and come face to face with this unknown creature! Never once did I think that it was the blue jays!!

Now I know better. And, I bet that most of you who are reading this story already knew that blue jays are actually pests and not amusing birds. Sometimes I wonder how I can manage to survive a single day without constant supervision. Really. So, if you would like to help me out, just let me know.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Whig Rose

I am finally going to post my April finishes. And to say finishes (plural) is a tricky little thing. But, first things first.

This is my finished Whig Rose. Didn't she turn out so beautiful!! This quilt has been hanging around here for several YEARS, cut out and partially appliqued. But, I have not been very motivated to finish it. So, several months ago I passed out the unfinished blocks to my quilt group! Such a good idea. It was just the help I needed, and they did a fabulous job. The borders came together easy enough, and the quilting was fun.

Now, here's where things get a little tricky. 1) I needed a label and 2) I have a zillion and a half unfinished projects. SO, combining the two seems like a good plan. The coxcomb project volunteered for the job. I only had one finished block for that quilt, so I cut it in half on the diagonal and viola! Two labels, one for now and one for later.

Thirdly, I came across an old project that I had listed in the sidebar as Tiny Thimbles. Now, as it happens, Tiny Thimbles and I have grown apart. No longer destined to be chums, it was off to the thrift store! So long, Fair well, It's time to say adieu.....

And that makes three finishes for April. Yippee!

Monday, May 3, 2010

It's Finally Tomorrow

Everyday I tell myself that tomorrow I am going to weed my boysenberry patch. Actually, sometimes I tell myself that I will do it "the day after tomorrow", or even "next week". So, consequently, the weeds are now somewhere between mid calf and waist high. But, this morning I decided that today was the day.
I started with an extensive 7am search for my garden gloves. The good ones. The yellow ones with the rubber coating that keeps all of the thistle thorns and other pokey things from breaking off in my fingers. They were nowhere to be found, until that is, I was finished with the job. Then I remembered right where I had tucked them away. So, that meant that I had to do the job with a pathetically inferior pair of gloves that I keep around for who knows what reason. And, yes, I have several little thistle thorns in my hands right now!

Now, hand weeding is something I rather enjoy. But I like to keep it to about 45 minutes or so. After that it just seems like work. Funny, because when I was a kid I hated weeding and hanging out the laundry. I swore that when I was a grown-up I was never going to do either one of these jobs. Ever. Never ever.

My mom had a garden that we weeded every summer. My guy estimates it at about 25 X 50 feet. But to us kids it was 10 acres of hell. Everyday we would each have to pull one 50 ft row of weeds. In the central valley heat! We hated it more than words can say. And, if you were the one who got the okra row, well that was a little bit of double hell! And, just for the record, my mom had this THING about growing stuff that we did not even like. Cream crowder peas and okra come to mind. We spent endless hours planting, weeding, flood irrigating, weeding, harvesting, weeding and canning stuff we didn't even like to eat. And, actually, we almost never ate any of it. My mom still has floor to ceiling shelves full of the stuff that we grew and canned back in the 80s. And, yes, this is a completely true story!! She says that it will be eaten with joy when the Tribulation rolls around. (Makes me real glad that we believe in a pre-trib rapture!)

I don't know if this story is funny to you, but it is seriously cracking me up!

Anyway, back to my garden (where I only grow yummy things like boysenberries and tomatoes), it took me 2 hours to pull all of those weeds! That is way over my 45 minute limit, but I knew that if I did not finish the job today, I would never make myself finish it. So I pressed on.

All of the weeds have now been thrown into my chicken pen, where they are considered a bounty of delight by my little flock.

Now all that is left to do, is to wait for that big ol' pile of weeds to turn into a big ol' bowl full of eggs! Right after I hang out the laundry, that is....