Gizzy in Heaven!

Gizzy in Heaven!
I love you forever and ever, Amen!


Friday, April 29, 2011

Oh, what a beautiful morning...

I did not get up at 4 am to watch the Royal Wedding, but I saw some of it on You Tube "The Royal Channel" and it was lovely! Here is the link, if you want to see it too:

The Royal Channel

Roquemore Memorial Park

It was such a nice, cool morning today. Everything looked so clean and green outside after all the rain we had yesterday, so Gizzy and I headed out the door around 7:30 am and didn't get back home till noon. I was thankful that my sunflowers were not bent or broken. I'm glad that I gave them the needed support to survive the winds yesterday.

I needed to mail a package at the post office, but didn't realize they don't open till 9 am, so I had time to enjoy a cup of coffee at "The Junction" whilst chatting with our friendly neighborhood dentist, a pleasant young man from New Hampshire. I never met him before, but now that I know he's such a nice man I am actually looking forward to going to the dentist.

After the post office, I decided to walk to Roquemore Park where I used to take Gizzy all the time when I still had my car. The view was so clear and the air was fresh, all washed clean from yesterday's rain. The grass seemed greener and the water sparkled - I actually felt like I was getting a glimpse of Paradise. The birds were chirping and Gizzy was just looking and investigating...and remembering!

We sat on a bench at the 911-Prayer garden for some time before taking the long way home - past the (very) old, small cemetery and past the three horses in their fenced in stable across from the school yard. They curiously stopped grazing to take a closer look at us, but walked away as soon as Gizzy started to bark at them.

I found some ripe blackberries that tasted so sweet as we wandered down memory lane past the old house where I used to live. I remembered some people I knew who no longer live was bitter-sweet, but it's good to remember without dwelling.

Taking the road that winds back around the lake I found a good spot in the shade to brush and trim Gizzy's hair, for you see, tomorrow is the annual "Milltown Murals Motorcade" and Gizzy and I will be seen by more than just the ducks and kitty cats ;-)

I will take photos of the event tomorrow. I didn't have my camera with me this morning, but the pictures you see here were taken last Spring and it looked exactly like that today. Enjoy your weekend and stay safe!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Short and Sweet

Due to bad weather (heavy rain, winds, thunder and lighting) I won't be computing long today. Just to let you know I appreciate all your comments on my garden. I hope the sunflowers survive. I went out last night to add some bamboo stakes and tied them back with some twine..all whilst under heavy mosquito attack, I might add.

I finished another patriotic Cock-a-doodle Rooster potholder for an order that's going out today:

and a thick, bright yellow scarf someone ordered:

(If you spy the toys in the background you might think a toddler lives here, but no, it's just my Gizzy dog)

Well, got to shut off the power because the sky is growling (Gizzy's hiding) and its coming down in buckets:

Stay save everyone and I will pray for the poor folks in harm's way. 

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Loquat (or Japanese Plum)

I first heard of loquats years ago when I lived in California... and I may have even tasted them, but could not remember much about them, till my friend invited me to go over and pick some from her tree before the birds get them all.

Here in Georgia people call them Japanese Plum and generally just leave them for the birds. Now that I know what they are, I remember seeing those trees all around the lake, only it never occurred to me to eat one of the fruits thinking it was some sort of an ornamental plant...

The fruit is small (about the size of a grape), thick skinned with large seeds (anywhere from one to three) covered with a hull, leaving very little actual fruit for consumption.You can eat the skins, but I like to tediously deseed and peel them so that I can enjoy a bowl full all at once  They are juicy and from tart to sweet (depending on their ripeness) and the flesh reminds me of that of a grape. They are very mild tasting, but it's not a fruit I would miss if I never had it again.

After I'm done with this batch, I will move on to something else. What interests me more about these is their beautiful seeds. They are rather large, dark brown and shiny sort of like wooden pebbles and I would love to make a necklace out of them, just the way I did with apple seeds when I was a kid. Did you do that too?

I tried poking a needle through one of them last night (lengthwise) and the darn seed split right in half. I could not get the needle through the narrow ends, so I don't know if I'll be able to string them together. Maybe I have to try to make something else with them, but I'm definitely going to keep them...and plant a few just for the fun of watching them sprout.

I did that with a cantaloupe a couple of months ago - I just dumped the seeds into the ground by my roses and lemon bush and look at these little leaves - who knows, I might have home grown cantaloupes this year.

In the back you see the pine cones I collected and placed all along the wall and around my sunflowers. They help keep them from tipping over and keep the cats out of the flower beds. It works really well. The cones close up when it rains, but open right back up in the sun and get nice and uninviting to step on. There's lots of open spaces for the strays to run - they do not need to be using my flower beds as their personal litter box...meow!

The sunflowers are growing nicely and are now towering over the rose bushes. They are supposed to get 12' high.

Below is a photo of my back porch container garden:

Top left is my lilac bush  and next to it are the garden peas that surprised me by sprouting since the envelope indicated that the seeds where over two years expire (and I wanted to see what would happen.) I stuck some bamboo sticks in there for them to climb on. In front are lettuce and one container of Kohlrabi that I have to transplant and on the left are three containers with Snapdragons that I planted a bit late.

More salad greens in containers hanging from the Bradford pear tree out back.

My pride and joy Star Jasmine that is blooming profusely this year. I love sitting outside next to it under the shade tree while crocheting and enjoying its intoxicating scent with every gentle breeze. It really does not take much to make me long as my boy is sitting by my side!

Now I have to get back outside to crochet some more under the tree (what a life)... I got a few orders that I have to finish and get in the mail today. I'll post more photos of our walk from this morning. It was short, yet very pretty! Have a great day my friends.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Spring Duckling for Easter

My friend and I have been patiently waiting to see baby ducks at the lake, because the ducks are taking turns sitting on their nests, but alas, no ducklings thus far. So, I had to crochet my own:

Before you get too excited, this is NOT my own pattern. I found it in this month's edition of Crochet World magazine and immediately had to try one. I'm working on a second one in different colors right now.

I crocheted this four piece set last night consisting of one yellow duckling, a bright pink hat, jumper and egg to match:

It was a bit tedious having to sew on all the little parts (i.e. bill, wings, feet, tail) but it was actually quite fun to make. I'm going to crochet a few more in different colors to surprise a couple of my neighbors on Easter morning.

Quack, quack - happy Easter!

(Give us a hug!)

Lest we forget my boy! Here he is sitting in the children's rocking chair that I found standing next to the dumpster at my apartment complex. Please know, that I am not generally a "dumpster diver" but this wooden chair is very well made and looks like a quality item with just one small defect that I think I can repair. I want to paint it and maybe give it away or resell it. Meanwhile it can be Gizzy's rocking chair!

Rock on, Gizzy!


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Let's clown around!

Today, we are starting the day with 91 percent humidity and needless to say, I could not garden very much this morning without getting soaked and having to retreat to indoors. I did manage to stake my peas, transplant my dill into a bigger container, fertilize and water all the plants, feed the strays and I broke up a cat fight (did you know they sounded like little kids screaming?)

So, I'm taking this opportunity to blog and spend some time with you this morning. I've not been a very good buddy and I apologize, but since summer is coming early, I'll be cooped up inside soon enough to blog more regularly.

Anyway, my friend Ginny, of Let your Light Shine, spied one of my Harlequin or Jester clowns in one of my pictures I posted and suggested for me to show you the rest of my collection.

Here they are! Meet the Clown's family:

I put up a little shelf on my living room corner and that's where they are and the biggest one is standing on my entertainment unit:

I put him next to the little ones so you can see the difference. I got him/her from my best friend about 6 years ago, but I don't know how long she's had him (I just noticed my hanging planters outside with the lettuce growing in them.)

It stands about 19" tall and is very elegant looking. Even his nails are painted, look:

Let me show you the rest of the gang, from the littlest one to the biggest:

Here's the tiniest one that my sister brought from Germany some odd 20 years ago. It's sitting on a swing and measures just about  4 1/2" from top to bottom (including the hat.)

He's extra special to me because, well, my sister gave him to me.

Next is my other small baby clown that sits with his pal for comparison:

I bought him years ago in California (over 15 years) and he's 5" tall with the softest head of hair. I think it's rabbit and I really need to wash it, but am afraid that it might come off....It feels incredibly soft to the touch. The bigger clown on the left is my newest acquisition, the only one I purchased here in Georgia thus far. I bought him last year in a second hand shop. He's a 10" shelf sitter with no hands and feet, but I liked his colors.

The next two are my Hobos, I purchased them together in California over 15 years ago:

These two are standing up and are 9" tall. (Uh, oh! The flash woke the sleeping beastie.)

(Hey! Wait a minute! How do they rate, mom? It's supposed to be all about ME!!!)

The next one is one of my favorites because I like that it has porcelain face and hands plus I love the colors and decorations:

The next one is one of my favorites too (OK, they all are - for different reasons!) because it reminds me of Mardi Gras (don't ask me why! I've never been there) but I just love the paisley purple with gold trim and the turban hat, plus his hands and face are porcelain too and he's got freckles; ALSO, he was my very first one who got the whole collection started.

Both of the above clowns are shelf sitters and about 10" tall in stretched out position and I bought them in California (at different times) well over 20 years ago.

The next one is a my Valentine's clown and also from California, only it does not have any hands and feet, which is sad and he looks so sad too with a blue tear coming from his eye:

He/she is also 10" tall from top to bottom (and needs to be washed, I see!)

Lastly, here's the purple clown shelf sitter with hands and feet and he also needs a bit cleaning up - in fact they all do, I'm just afraid to wash their hair. I want to get a hand-held steamer to clean them like my friend did with the big one she gave me. Maybe when I get my car, I'll pack them all up and take them to Livi's house, so I can steam clean them.

And that concludes today's presentation of my clown family. I hope you enjoyed the show! I'm just a silly old woman who finds pleasure in her little trinkets and knick-knacks (or pretties, as they say here in the South). Looking at them evokes memories of places I've been, people I've known and it brings me joy!

Wishing you all a joyful day and a happy heart!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Strawberry Fields Forever...

I did it! I got some freshly picked strawberries from the strawberry field and I'm going to OD....if you don't hear from me in a few days, I've exploded LOL

(Mommy, what are these? I hope I don't have to eat them)

I'm so excited. I feel rich like a queen, a Strawberry Queen - here, try one!

I'm going to go back in a few weeks to get more. The field will be open till end of May. They charge $1.99 per pound if you pick them yourself and the ready picked ones are:

$16 for a flat (what I got)
$9 for a gallon
$2.50 for a quart

That's cheaper than the grocery store and best of all, super fresh! 

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Earth Day is next Friday!

What are you doing to raise awareness and help our planet? (see my answer below)


Earth Day is a day that was founded by Senator Gaylord Nelson and focuses on environmental awareness. Another Earth Day called International Earth Day takes place earlier in the year on the Spring Equinox. 
Earth Day 
Friday, April 22, 2011
in the United States 
this year.

I try to be environmentally-friendly every day of the year, but I'm glad there's one day officially set aside now to raise awareness world-wide and to remind us to be more careful with our planet. By changing little things (i.e. don't litter and recycle) or making very big, personal decisions (like choosing to have no children or just one child) our combined affords can have a big impact on our environment. Please visit the EarthDay website and see what changes you might want to implement this year, if even just for one day! If nothing else, we must teach our children to respect our earth and take nothing for granted because this land is not inherited from our forefathers, but merely borrowed from our children.

Thank you and God bless you!

My contribution to preserving our planet:

Planted a garden to support honey bees and pollinators
Use my cloth bags instead of plastic shopping bags
Take shorter showers and turn off water in between sudsing
Help pick up litter around the lake and in nature
Walk more and drive less and ride share whenever possible
Support local farmers by buying local produce as much as I can
Purchase in bulk (large containers) and avoid individual serving sizes to reduce waste

Please help me spread the word about Earth Day and let me know about it so that I can enter you in a special drawing for a small thank you gift from me to you!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Computer Problems

Just FYI: I'm having intermittent computer problems and am typing this from the library today, but I will not be able to do that very, if I'm late responding to a message or not respond at all, that's because I'm unable to log into blogger or my e-mail sometimes....and no, I'm not going to spend any money on my computer right now (as much as I want to) because I really, really, really want a car next month and have to save my money for that first. Maybe I get lucky and whatever it is will resolve itself (sigh!)

I'll check in when I can...have a great spring everyone!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Garden Salad

Garden Salad anyone?

Here's my first actual salad on a plate from my harvest of Grand Rapids leaf lettuce that I sowed February 22nd:

As pretty as it looks, this lettuce is not what I call a hearty variety for serious crunchers like me. The leaves are extremely thin and tender. They barely hold up to a rinse under the faucet and have to be treated very gingerly .While tasty, I would have to eat three plates full to feel like I had a salad since the leaves virtually melt in your mouth. For me half the fun of eating raw is the crunch, which is why I prefer Romaine lettuce, fresh spinach or even Napa cabbage as the basis for my salads.

My home-grown does work well in sandwiches or wraps where you just need a few leaves and that's what I will be mainly using them for. I make a delicious mock/vegetarian BLT:

Wheat bread (or any whole grain) 
tiny bit of good mayonnaise (or home made variety)
bacon bits (soy chips)
a great tasting tomato like hot house or home grown 
some lettuce leaves 
little cracked black pepper and you're good to go! That's one of my favorite sandwiches and I will definitely be using my lettuce for making these.

For me summer time is all about salads and sandwiches because these days I'm more of an assembler than a cook. Living alone, I make it easy on myself. Except for the occasional pot of fresh veggie soup or pot of beans, I don't spend much time in front of the stove anymore, not like I used to when I had people to cook for.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed looking at my salad greens. It looks like it's finally stopped raining so that my plants can get some much needed sunshine.

On another note, I may get a car next month. A friend of mine called me out of the blue yesterday to tell me about her friend who's selling a Nissan Maxima for $1,000 and when I called about it this morning, the man said he's not in a hurry to sell it because I won't have all the money till next month. I don't know much about it, except that it runs. Next month, when I have all the cash, my friend Bobby-Jack will go with me to drive out there where the car is and take a look at it for me since I know nothing about cars, except that they need gas, a regular oil change and that the tires have to be properly inflated...that's about it as far as my mechanical expertise.

All I really MUST have is air conditioning because in this heat, my Gizzy and I will have a heart attack driving without!

Happy weekend, my friends!

Gizzy says "hey" and woof-woof!