Tuesday, August 19, 2014

It's Been a Rough Year...

I'm not one to complain. Why? I have no one to complain to, for one thing. It's just been a rough year, so far. I don't seem to be able to catch a break.
To recap: In February I had to have a root canal. The tooth was abscessed and I had to have a round of antibiotics before the procedure.  The tooth still hurts to this day. I went back for a six-month check, and the doctor told me it was healing, the abscess being 'smaller' than it was in February.

In May, I went to a dermatologist with the request to check two spots on my face and one spot on my clavicle. The collar bone spot turned out to be a basal cell carcinoma. After 5 trips to the doctor, I now have a three-inch scar and am 'cancer-free'.

The skin cancer caused me to struggle with outdoor activities this summer.  Some things must be done (gardening, mowing, general yard work, picking vegetables/fruits, feeding livestock, etc.)  I bought three different brands of sunscreen trying to find one that I could live with--one was too heavy and greasy, one was too smelly, and the last one I bought was better than the previous two, still just hard to live with on my body. The results of this dilly-dallying around was an overgrown garden that produced less than average yields.

In June, there was a windstorm that blew a tree over on my gazebo and smashed the roof. I still don't have it repaired.

Then earlier this month, some kind of predator (varmint!) got in my chicken pen and killed all my chickens. One. by. one.  Each time I lost one, I would try to patch the fence. Nothing I did worked.

I'm a pretty optimistic person, but I have to admit I feel a little blue now.

So when life goes well for you, please pray for those who are struggling.  We need it....

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

New Life

One baby chick has hatched....so far.  I am hopeful that a few others might appear....

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Winter Pastime

A new hobby....

Here is a white throated sparrow.

I needed a birdwatching book and found one sorta on the cheap.

Tufted titmouse....

Black capped Chickadee

Hope I got these right!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Every time I write this phrase, I think of George Bailey in the great movie, "It's a Wonderful Life.  It comes at the end of the movie when George realizes that he's not dead or dreaming.

So.  Merry Christmas!  I'm very glad, grateful, humble, awestruck for the life I have.

I hope you feel the same way.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Making Compost Tea

Just as an experiment, I have dug up a portion of the chicken pen floor--which is composted chicken manure--and put some of it into a bucket, which I have filled with water.  I dug three five-gallon buckets full of the composted chicken manure mixed with hay and dirt.  I put the bulk of these buckets into a large rubbermaid-type trash receptacle and put the lid on it.  I want it to "cook" a little longer.  I had put some grass clippings in the receptacle last week after mowing the yard.

I drained off some of the liquid in the bucket filled with the manure/water mixture into a plastic jar (used whey protein container) and poured it on the blackberry bushes, fig trees, blueberry bushes, and tomatoes.  Yes, it goes a long way.

Now to wait and see if it boosts the production of the plants....so hard to wait!

Just a follow up....

Just wanted to follow up on my last post about cutting the cable cord.  I absolutely love it!  I have no problem turning off the television at night during 'prime time'.  I am enjoying the time to read.  Books are always better than the movies anyway.  I am also busy with summertime activities in the garden, orchard and chicken coop.  Sitting on the back porch watching hummingbirds at the feeder is another favorite pastime.  Not to forget yard work!  The more it rains, frequent mowings are in order.  We have been blessed with more rain this year than in the past two.  Love it!  Love my life.  The vegetation and flowers are beautiful this year.

I'm looking forward to the garden harvest.  I have planted three new items this year:  Jerusalem artichokes; Bolivian Sun Roots; and butternut and kuri winter squash.  May the Lord bless these efforts!  I'm picking blackberries every day now.  The blueberries and plums were a bust:  too much rain, birds/animals' invasions; maybe not enough fertilizer.  Looking forward to next year for these.  That's what a garden is for, to provide hope.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

I Cut the Cord

I’m sitting here watching of all things, “The Lawrence Welk Show”.  That’s strange for me because when I was a teenager, I had a short-sleeved sweatshirt with an iron-on decal (that I purchased at Kuhn’s 5 & 10 Cent Store) that read, “Help Stamp Out Lawrence Welk”.  I wore it all the time, because I wanted to ‘make a statement’. 

Why am I watching Lawrence Welk?  I had my cable TV turned off, that’s why.  Cable companies are the biggest bunch of crooks there’s ever been.  Their prices just keep rising and the content of the shows keeps falling.  I finally had a talk with myself and asked the question, why am I paying to be advertised to, and why am I paying to watch 50-yr-old reruns?  I had to admit it didn’t make good sense.  So I discontinued the service and bought an antenna from which I get six channels:   CBS, FOX, ABC (which is really ‘GAY’ B C), and three channels of PBS.  And what really amazes me is that I don’t miss any of the 100 plus channels that were available on cable.  After all, I had cable TV for the last 38 years!  Which is where Old Lawrence come in.   

The Lawrence Welk Show (1955) Poster
As I sit here listening to the music of the show, I think back to my childhood.  During the summer months, I’d be outside till nearly dark, riding bikes or playing hide and seek with my cousins.  I would invariably walk down to my Granny’s house and sure enough, the TV would always be on the Lawrence Welk Show.  She never missed a week with her date with Lawrence.  She loved to dance and she especially liked to see the dancing segment, where Lawrence would dance with the ladies of the audience.

So now when, I watch Lawrence Welk, or put in a DVD of The Andy Griffith Show, or Bonanza, I can almost believe that outside my door, it’s 1963 and there’s a gravel road running by my house.  The doors and windows in the house are all open.  There’s a window fan blowing cool (cool?) air into the living room.  There’s only one telephone in the house which sits on a little niche in the wall that my Granpa built.  It’s an 8-party line and the phone number has only 5 digits.  There’s a 1959 Ford Fairlane in the driveway.  There’s a ringer washing machine on the screened-in back porch.  And best of all, there’s great family programs on the television.  Shows that really entertain.  Shows that don’t offend or embarrass you.  Shows that you look forward to seeing week after week.  And that you didn’t have to pay a monthly fee in order to watch.

I think I will dwell in this alternate universe forever.  It is just too sweet, too gentle, and too perfect to let go of.