Monday, May 24, 2010

Don't I Wish!!!!

No, that's not a picture of my front porch on the title, but a girl can dream can't she??? I'd take everything on that porch, given the opportunity. The photo is about half of the front porch of a bed and breakfast/antique shop that I discovered some time ago. I can imagine the changes I'd make to that house to meet my wishes, but it wouldn't take a whole lot. Most would be inside because I love the outside as it is, down to the rusted galvanized tin roof!!! I live in a run of the mill brick ranch house with a hipped roof, and nary a porch to be seen, only a small front stoop. I keep dreaming about the entire B & B and its style, but it won't ever happen unless we win the lottery. And, you can't win if you don't play. We keep forgetting the lottery exists unless we see a billboard advertising some whopping amount. Even then, there would be a MAJOR discussion with Hubby. He likes more modern things.

The only porch I have is my garden house/shed and I love it.
We have coffee out there, or lunch, or take a break from working, or a glass of wine or a beer, or just hang out. There's double doors on the left end for access and a ramp to put the garden tractor inside. When I'm on the porch it seems like I'm on the back forty, but I'm really only about 80 feet from the house.
We had an unusually cold and long winter (at least for us) and I lost most of the plants from the porch even though they got put inside when we expected a freeae. I've started some new geraniums but they aren't blooming yet. The ivy topiary on the table is tiny but will fill in.

Summer time is here!!! Supposed to be in the mid 90's here today again. This hot sultry weather is why we get the heck out of dodge in the summer. I grew up near here in an old house in the country that didn't have air conditioning. The only heat was either fireplace or propane heaters. School didn't have AC either. Makes me wonder how we lived that way, but everybody around us did the same. AC was a rich person's luxury at that time and we sure didn't qualify!!! 'Course, I realize I've become a wimp, too!!!

We're off on vacation Wednesday. We have a new granddaughter that is 3 weeks old that we want to see. I finished her quilt.
It may not be considered "girly" enough, but I think it's adorable, even if I did make it. I also have the top finished for another quilt. Don't know when it will be done. It's all brightly colored hearts on a white background. I've not learned how to quilt using my machine. I've always sent them out to a long armer for quilting but she couldn't get to it in time. That ought to be a lesson to me that I really should try to learn how to machine quilt for myself. Would save me a lot of money, that's for certain. Long arm quilters don't work cheap!! div>

Isn't it always the way??? Hubby was going to mow the lawn before we left and the lawn mower is on the fritz!!!!! Can't engage the blade. It worked fine a week or so ago when he used it last. Hope its nothing major and can be remedied easy enough by our handy-dandy helper who will come over tomorrow to check it out. The local lawn mower shop could pick it up tomorrow but would be three or four weeks before they'd get it back to us!! Have you ever heard of such? If they are that busy -- hire some more help!!!!

Y'all take care.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Definitely a Work in Progress

Y'all are going to have to be patient. The learning curve is steep for this girl, so there'll be changes as I figure out what the heck I'm doing here!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Welcome to Florida Farm Girl's World

Ever have one of those days when you wonder if you should just chuck the whole project and sit in a corner? That's how my morning started. I needed to use the starter for Amish Friendship bread and had enough for 3 batches. Well, only had 5 eggs. Had to borrow from the neighbor, thank goodness they had some. Then I discovered that I had only 1 cup of applesauce. Needed 1/2 cup to substitute in each batch for some of the oil. Oh well. And THEN I saw that although I had bread flour and whole wheat flour, not a dusting of all purpose flour in the house!! ((Big sigh)). So bread flour it was. And THEN I had only 2 packages of pudding mix. So.....combined them and then divided that by three. Then to decide what kinds to make and that's how I wound up with cinnamon (2 standard loaves), coconut/pineapple (3 smaller loaves) and the almond cherry (4 mini loaves plus two flower pot muffins). I've made the first two before but today is the first attempt at the almond cherry. This bread tastes much better a day or so after baking, so the final judgment will wait until at least tomorrow. That certainly doesn't mean we'll have the willpower to leave it alone until then, though!!

Took me all morning long to make this stuff. Seemed like I washed a ton of dishes. I sure hope Hubby doesn't think this is going to get to be a habit!!

The resident birds are very busy in the backyard. There's a pair of downy woodpeckers diligently foraging in an oak tree. A brown thrasher has to be the cleanest bird in the neighborhood. He's been in and out of the birdbath repeatedly. We haven't seen any migrants in a while and, in fact, didn't have too many this year. I think the weather was such that they didn't stop here near the shore but continued their flights more inland. Other years we've had beautiful buntings, grosbeaks and other songbirds that are not native.

My poor yard is in such sad shape!!! It has been neglected something terrible for the last three or four years. I've gotten so lazy about tending to it and it shows! I've lately begun a few things to help but it still needs lots of work. Hubby and I usually do all the gardening but due to some health issues, he's not available to do a lot of it right now. We're hoping that by the winter he'll be back to where he can help out with the labor part. I've always had to do the designing, deciding and planting. A number of years ago I sent him out into the yard to dig out a bush of some kind (don't remember exactly what it was now) but I never went out there to show him what I was talking about. Some time later I was in the yard and became aware of a noticeable absence. So I came inside him and asked nicely, "What happened to my snowball bush that was in the flowerbed? " Now, he had no idea what a snowball bush looked like, particularly when it probably would have looked like a pile of sticks at the time. So I took him out and showed him where it was supposed to be. He says "Oh, wasn't that one you wanted dug up?" This is the one he dug up. Who knows how big it would be by now.

Guess what. I still don't have a replacement snowball bush! Now he won't touch anything without me specifically pointing it out to him. Believe me, there's good and bad points to that attitude!!

The countdown is underway before the start our summer travels. Lists are being made and items checked off. There is such a flurry of activity in the last few days and then the day arrives and you leave the neighborhood. It's a wonderful feeling. Takes a lot of effort to get there, but worth every bit of it!!