"Things that matter most must never be at the mercy of things that matter least." ~Goethe~

25 June 2013

A perfect birthday...

Can't think of a better way to spend my day.

Working with pretty fabric for a special project.

Loving the different blue fabric that will be used in said special project.

Having one of my partner crafters hang out with me in the craft room while she is working on a special project of her own.

And patiently waiting for the Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies my little bakers are making me on a cool, rainy day today.

Couldn't ask for a better day for a birthday.

Especially once I start eating those warm, yummy cookies!


21 June 2013

House guests...

I had to take a moment to show off our newest house guests.

The picture isn't the best due to trying to hurry and get out of the way so Mama Bird could get back to the nest.

So exciting!


17 June 2013

Good eating...

There has been alot of favorite food creating going on around here lately.  It's an absolute wonder I haven't put weight on this past week.

Lemonade has been an must have around here the past few weeks.  There's always a pitcher of it in the fridge ready to pour over ice in a big ole' drinking jar.  We always use our fancy stuff around here.  While sipping on this wonderful beverage one day and talking about what kind of treats to make, the girls and I thought why not lemonade pound cake.  And so it was made.

It lasted two days tops.  

Breakfast, lunch, dinner and in between.  Little slivers were being cut from it all day long.  Slivers some how made it so justifiable when you keep coming back for more.  At least for me.

On another day we noticed that there was a box of strawberries just sitting in the fridge all lonely.  You can't just leave a box of strawberries sitting around doing nothing, just chilling in the fridge.  It's just not right.  There was only one thing to do after a marvelous idea from Em.  Make stuffed strawberries!  With a little cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla all creamed together, it was piped into freshly cleaned berries.  All ready for dessert time.  

It was tough getting through dinner.  Spaghetti dinner mind you.

They seriously taste like strawberry shortcake without the cake.

They didn't last long.

Then there was Father's Day yesterday.  It was all about Dad and his absolute favorites.  There's alot to pick from on that list.  But choices were made for him, shopping completed on Saturday and creating started early on Sunday morning.

For breakfast, build your own breakfast sandwiches.  What a way to wake up in the morning.  Seriously the best start of the day ever.  English muffins, eggs, cheese, tomatoes, avocado, bacon.  There was some major stacking going on here.  Let's just say each sandwich was so big that it couldn't fit in its creators mouth.  Messy but oh so yummy.

Fresh salsa was made for all day snacking.  Absolute must have around here.

Lunch plans were changed due to all the salsa and chips we were eating.  Save plans for another day, Dad's birthday this coming week.

Then there was dinner.

Rouladen with spatzle and red cabbage.

You just can't help but make a pig of yourself with this in front of you.

I honestly can't decide if it was more fun making it or eating it.  It was so much fun having my little chef in the kitchen with me putting every thing together.  I love how B gets all excited when she gets to cooking.  Makes my heart sing.  I just want to squeeze her, gently.

Then Father's Day dessert.

Rhubarb pie.

I cheated though.

There were two things working against us for this dessert.
1.  I was not turning the oven on with the temps getting hot out.
2.  I am still being a bit stingy with my supply out in the freezer.

So the only logical thing was go to the best pie place in town and let them do all the hard work.  The kitchen does't heat up and its just sitting there, staring you down, waiting for you to cut into it.
So worth it.

Now I have to get moving so that all this yummy stuff doesn't decide to park itself somewhere on my hips or backside.  
The troubles of eating yummy food.


12 June 2013

Pesky critters...

I just had to share a tid bit of information with you.  I stumbled upon what I consider to be a magical fix  to a problem that I have had for years now in my yard.  Here's the problem...


They have been a nemesis of mine for years around here.  They tear up my bird feeders to where they are no longer usable.  They chew the bark off of my lilac bush in the back.  They dig up my flower beds and garden.  They move bulbs to weird places in the yard.  I have sunflower and peanut plants sprouting up in the middle of the yard because our neighbor thinks its just so cute to feed them.  It's not cute.  Really.

  They drive me crazy!  I have really had enough of the little beasts using our fence as a race way each and every morning.  It's like listening to a Nascar race for rodents.

Last month while sitting in the back yard one even lunged at the girls as they walked by the fence while just playing outside.  That was it.  Enough of the little furry rats.  We had to take a stand against them.

I went on a all out search for anything that would deter them from around my yard.  Just make them move on to some other place.  We just couldn't take them anymore.  With a bit of searching and reading online we found what we think to be the best repellant ever for them.  Safe and harmless to them.

Are you ready for it?

Irish Spring Soap Bars-Original scent.


I can't remember where I saw this at.  I was in such a hurry to get to the store and grab a few bars to put around the fence that I forgot to bookmark the link.

Bars were cut up and placed all around the yard on the fence.  It was amazing at how fast those beasts fled.  We were all amazed.  Apparently they can't stand the smell of the tallow in it.

**You have to replace the soap pieces about every two weeks or when you can't smell the fragrance any longer.  If you can't smell it the squirrels can't smell it and they will be back.**

  We have now been squirrel free for a month now and it's wonderful.  It's no big thing to replace the pieces of soap with new ones every once in a while to keep us stress free with the yard.  I didn't know what it was like not to have the beasts running through our yard tearing things up all the time.  It's absolutely wonderful!

Now I must also tell you that we are not the only ones that have problems with the squirrels.  Our neighbors can't stand them either with all the destruction that they do in their yards.  One neighbor has caught them chewing on the cushions on their patio table set and another had the beasts chewing on the drip heads on his sprinkler system.  Imagine how wonderful that is to continually replace all year long.  Awesome.  There are many accounts of destruction that I had no idea my neighbors have dealt with along side us.

I have since shared this knowledge with the neighbors and they have also rid their yards of these furry beasts.  All is well now in our neck of the woods after many years of turmoil.  Let someone else deal with them.  

Now if we can all convince this guy to move on a leave our song birds alone, all well be blissful.

But how does one talk to a hawk and convince them to move on?


10 June 2013

A great start to summer...

Summer seems to be in full swing here.  I didn't even realize that I haven't stopped in here for two whole weeks until yesterday.  Wow!

There's a boat load of things that have been keeping us busy.  Like meeting up with friends, picnics in the park, bike riding, etc.  Really anything that has to do with being outside.  It just seems like we are taking full advantage of justdoing things this year.  All honesty, we have to take advantage of the outdoors before the cruel heat sets in and won't let go.  I whine about it.  I don't like it and I'm sure it doesn't like me.  So I try to get up early each day to throw the windows open to enjoy the cool morning air and to keep from turning the A/C on early in the day.  I whine about the power bill also.

But there has been some pretty interesting things going on around here, at least for us.  Little things that we make sure to check out each and every day.Things that put a smile on our faces.  Even the addition of the newest grandson to the family.  Such a sweetie pie.

One other addition has been the cute Robin that has made a nest on one of the beams of the front porch area.  We are proud that she decided to grace us with her most important life event.  A nice shady area to rest herself while tending to her nest.  And safe from bigger birds that have been known to destroy a Robin's nest in our yard before.  She's one smart Mom.  And the best viewing point is from one of the girls window upstairs.  She's always the first thing in the morning to be checked on.

We have been watching for a few days now and wondered if there were any eggs in the nest.  So when we noticed she flew off for just a short bit we took advantage of the moment and grabbed the ladder to take a peek.  The girls and I squealed when I announced that there were four perfectly gorgeous blue eggs in the nest.  A very happy moment indeed.  Everyone had their turn at looking but not touching the nest as quickly as possible so that Mommy Robin could get back to the nest and continue sitting.  What a wonderful thing.  Is there a better color than Robin's Egg Blue?  


Gardening has been a wonderful thing this year.  Our little greenhouse gave us such a great start this year.  I just love it.  Some size greenhouse should be a given for everyone who loves to grow their own veggies and flowers.  I can't do without one now.

The girls and I put in two more garden beds after seeing this wonderful idea with cinder blocks.  Quick and easy, especially when our wonderful local hardware store delivered them to us with free delivery.  Love those guys! So after a quick hour the girls and I had two more beds with dirt added and all our lovely plants tucked inside them.  I don't know why this idea didn't come my way before.  I won't make another wood garden box again.  Cinder blocks all the way for this little garden patch of mine.

I so need acreage big time to put in the amount of plants I would really want.  

The first crop of Rhubarb was picked.  Oh how everyone was excited.  Ideas of what to make with it are flying around like mad around here. Rhubarb bars were made in the early morning hours yesterday because I can't stand having the oven on during the hot afternoons.  (whining again).  Rest assured that it was all gone before lunch.  I think it was eaten for breakfast by everyone.

 I'll go ahead and admit that I'm a Rhubarb hoarder.  I'm not much of a sharing person when it comes to this prize crop of mine.  I don't even talk about having it in my garden.  I cherish it, seriously.  I get just enough out of my plants so that I can make a few jars of jam and have a few bags frozen so that we can have this treat throughout the year.  I am stingy and I make no apologies for it.  My crew told me that I remind them of Gollum in "Lord of the Rings" because of how I guard it.  

I do what I must do.

We have been on the ladybug watch around here for the past few weeks now.  I will be honest and say that I never knew what a ladybug larvae looked like before this year.  Seriously!  Where have I been?  We saw all these black things all over the place and I will admit a few were taken out so to say before the girls got curious about what they were.  A bit of investigating and we were mortified as to what we had done.  They are now a protected species in our yard now.  Everyone is told to leave them alone or else. The girls have become ladybug guard dogs as of late.

Then there has been quite a few of our wonderful summer time treats showing up around our place in the mornings.  I'll never tire of seeing the balloons each year.  Seriously, how could one not want to see them flying over your house?

This particular one buzzed us Sunday morning.  We heard something that sounded like the burners going off feverishly outside.  One look out the window and we realized the balloon was practically on us.  I don't think I've moved that fast since the Air Force.  I didn't think I had it in me still.  The basket went right in between our house and the neighbors just brushing the tree top.  Awesome!!!  I'm sure we were quite the sight for the pilot in the basket, looking below and seeing us having just gotten out of bed and all at 6:30 in the morning.  What an awesome start to the day.

So bring it on summer!  We are so ready for you and all the fun things that come with you.