Sunday, October 14, 2012


My oldest boy doesn't like to have his photo taken, by his momma.
Here he's hiding on the tractor with another favorite boy who calls himself the 'ass rider'. He's gone off to northern Oklahoma to work. I hope he finds his way. I'm sure going to miss him and his mules.
This is my boy's boy, on the left. He's lovely like his daddy.
That's a cousin on the right, he's a great boy too!
My boy's two little boys, just a few years ago.
Posting on my blog is something I rarely do anymore.
Not that I don't want to, I often think of it, but just don't take the time.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Jessie Lee
October 16, 1982
August 1, 2002

What the heart has once known it shall never forget

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Finally finished along with beet greens for dinner!

A year later, I've finally completed my project of painting some of the brick on the exterior of the house. My husband, the Bear, is a brick mason, so we had to have a brick home when we built. I, the one who makes things complicated and difficult, wanted some contrast. The solution was to paint the walls on the porch. Break up the red brick pattern a bit. This is the inspirational house that my brother found to create my vision. Keep in mind that painting brick is against all law and code in the brick mason world.
The picture below is my house, after the brick was painted. My husband suffered quite a bit of trama, but I think he's getting used to it now. He said it was like graffitti or defacing art work. But I just had to do it!
Now I have to decide whether to paint the doors a deep red or keep them white.
I'm happy with decisions to paint, maybe because once you paint brick, you can never go back to the original. But seriously, I do think it "breaks up the brick" and gives me the contrast I wanted. I'm so trying to achieve the look of an "old house".
Saturday we traveled to the farmer's market, oh what a treat. We came home with all sorts of goodies. Tiger melons were a new fruit we tried. We bought vegetables to substitute what we didn't have from our garden to make vegetable soup to freeze. I made 7 quarts, and it's lovely, but I have no pictures. Then we finished off the night with steak and fresh vegetables. Also fried the beet greens with little onion in bacon gease. Yummie!
I would have found a more photogenic plate, but was not planning on taking a photograph, until I saw those beets and greens together! Thank you to all who participated in providing this food!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Salsa with fresh vegetables from our garden

The time is here. Time to harvest the many blessings from our garden. This is my first batch of salsa this year. The tomatoes are from our garden, pepper, onion and garlic purchased. We have some really nice jalepeno pepper plants, but not enough peppers for salsa yet. I hope to make at least one more batch this summer. Our weather is so hot and dry, I'm afraid we may not be able to water enough to keep the garden going very long. We have already watered the pear trees, when they started dropping their pears. I've never watered the pear trees before.

Aren't these tomatoes just a lovely color of red? So grateful for this bountiful harvest!
I love the vibrant colors of fresh peppers!
Here's the final outcome. I didn't get the picture downloaded of it all mixed together in the pot.
Yum! Now for some warm salsa on tortilla chips!
It's a little warm with peppers.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

What a beautiful night for a sled ride!

We finally received some rain. We have been in dire need of rain on our lawns, gardens and pastures. All the grass is brown, and the roadways have been catching fire nearly every day. Then it rained. We were so blessed. We got about three inches. This also gave me the opportunity to move some thorn bushes that had been cut down to a burn pile to burn, since we got some rain. We've been under a burn ban for awhile. This is my low budget operation to transport these thorns to a suitable place to burn them. Drag a 16 foot 'cattle panel' behind the four wheeler, and pile thorn bushes on the panel, then drag to the fire. The Bear actually thought of this idea. It wasn't without glitches, but after a few minor adjustments, it worked just fine.
Here are the thorns after their sled ride to the fire! I heard a piece on NPR about someone had invented a competitive sport of eradicating some vine (probably Kudzu) in some southern state. I must think up something like that to get rid of these thorns. We've let them go for several years, and they are threatening to take over.
This is the worst lightening strike I've ever witnessed. It blew the top of this tree all apart and shredded  the trunk down to the ground. See how far the large pieces were blown away from the trunk. There are even large pieces of the trunk hanging in trees.
Mr. Green Snake. He is very large for a green snake.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Another shady project

I began my project, that I've put off for over a year now. I like to think I had good reason to take so long in finishing this part of our house. But breast cancer does have a way of taking some of your time and energy. So now that we're past all that, I got back to my brick painting. I wanted to give our house a little contrast and paint the interior walls on my front porch. I didn't want the paint to completely cover the brick. I wanted it to have a light, washed effect. So here is the wall with all the windows.
I began by power washing the whole porch. Then the prep work, covering the windows, ceiling and floor. I'm a little distracted, the Bear says I've got ADD. So I tend to start projects before the prep work is complete. Just to see how it goes. I suspect that I inherited this trait from my father. My mother would agree.
So this is the paper covering the ceiling. And we have this nifty little tool that was well worth the money. It attaches the tape to the paper as you roll it out.
There's my chigger bitten hand and the wonderful tool. The Bear talked me into that when we painted the interior of the house.

This would be the point in my preparation that I began to anticipate what it was going to look like. So I decided to start painting before I had all four windows covered. I had a strategy, not a very good one, as it turned out, but I had one. This would create problems for me later, but it all worked out in the end. My eagerness usually creates extra work for me. But hey, I like hard work.

And this is how the first wall looks when completed. Next I'll turn the corner. I have two more walls to paint. I've watered down my paint, 3 parts water/ one paint, and am spraying it from a hand sprayer.

And here's a shot of the house, just a little too far away to see the painted wall, but you get an idea of where this is going. The color matches the siding on either side of the chimney. Next I'll paint the front walls on either side of the chimney.  My husband, the Bear, is quite apprehensive about this project. He's a brick mason, laid all the brick on this house, and it's against brick mason law to paint brick. I hope he forgives me when this is done!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Another shady day

I try to stay out of the sun. But I love to get out and work. So I spent a little time today under another of my favorite trees on our place. This is an old hackberry. A large tree, with hugh limbs. Though it's rather large, it's not very sturdy. They splinter and break easily in wet or windy conditions. Our large tasks today were cutting down a couple of other hackberry trees that had broken and become a problem. But this is one of my favorite trees on the place.
Not a very good picture of the tree, but you can see the enormity of the branches. It doesn't have the thick leaf coverage to provide the deep shade that the oak has. Notice the hole on the trunk to the left. I wonder whose home that is?
This is my son's dog, Oakley. Another nice feature of this tree is the pond beneath it's branches. Oakley is preparing to go for a swim.
Here's Waylon. One of my son's three dogs. I missed the picture of all three of them together. So you have to see individual pictures of the dogs. See how large the shade is? Waylon, watching his mother swim.
And there's dog number three, Trigger. He's a sweet heart. He seems to be a watcher, he's usually sitting and watching. I'll not have a photo of the tree from outside the shade. I don't know why I didn't take a picture of the tree's profile.
And here is what we do under our favorite trees, we bury our dogs. This is Aussie's grave. We loved Aussie for fifteen years. He is the reason my son has three Australian shepards. He loved that dog! Aussie died Nov. 17, 2007. Ah, to live like Aussie. What a life. He made every step across that valley that I ever made during his 15 years here. He never barked unless it was absolutley necessary. If he did bark, you knew it was important. He was quiet, respectful, patient and loving. He rests under the shade of this beautiful tree.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Afternoon under the shade tree

Here sits Dixie under the very large, very perfect oak tree, that we refer to as Jesse's tree. You can see the large area of shade ending in the very bright sunlight. It was a hot day. I decided to work on cutting the thorns out from under the tree this afternoon, and Dixie or Dickety Doo, made every step right behind me.
I tried the black and white version. Not sure which I like better. Maybe the color photo. So we call it Jesse's tree after my son, whom we lost ten years ago this coming August. He loved this tree, and would often come sit under the tree. I have pictures of him in front of this tree.
As I was cutting the thorn bushes down under Jesse's tree, I heard a Waylon Jennings song come on the radio. It was not turned up nearly loud enough. So as I walked to the truck, I stepped over a rusty pipe wrench. Probably one of my son's tools. What a gift for me. To find something of his under his favorite tree.
And then before I left, this most beautiful butterly appeared.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Just checking in

I began this blog in December. I participated in BlogHer's Nablopomo for three months. I have missed the month of April. Am undecided about May. I enjoyed and benefited from the daily discipline. But had to make some decisions about my daily activities. I just wanted to come back and post some pictures from this month.

Saturday, March 31, 2012


So someone was telling me a story the other day. This is how it went.

Sunday night, after a long week, preparing to go back to work, after getting two children into bed and the  ready for the next week of school.

She, let's call her Val, received a call from her neighbor, ahhh....Lisa.

 Lisa says, "Val, I've started my period, and I don't have any feminine hygiene products, will you please walk over and bring me some?"

Val gathers up the needed items, and tells her husband and children she walking over to the neighbors house for a minute.

When she arrives, Lisa greets her and begins telling her, "Girl, let me tell you about my boyfriend. We've been seeing each other for awhile, and we spend every Sunday night together. But he was acting really strange this morning. He got a phone call from his ex-wife and tried to hide it from me."

Val interjects with "Didn't you suspect he was still seeing his ex-wife when you started dating him"?

Then Lisa says, "Yes, but he quit seeing her. I started keeping his one year old some and we were spending every Sunday night together. Then he was just acting really strange this morning, when he got that phone call, and now he won't answer my texts."

After a brief pause, Lisa continues, "when I drove by his house tonight at 9 PM, his car is gone. Where could he be? He has a one year old, where could he be at 9 o"clock?"

Lisa stares intently at Val.

Val continues to remain silent, in a good listening stance.

Then abruptly Lisa begins pointing her finger at Val, and adamantly insisting, "YOU KNOW YOU KNOW! You know you know he's cheating on me!"

Val met Lisa's insistent demands with, "No, I don't know where he is." Lisa continued with her rant of "YOU KNOW YOU KNOW".

Consequently, this was our phrase of the week and we used it appropriately every chance we got.


Friday, March 30, 2012

What I'd do

What would you do on a day that has perfect weather?

On a day of perfect weather, I'd like to spend the day at home.
And never go anywhere.
I'd drink coffee on the porch and smell the breeze.
I'd run around the house as long as I could in the pj's.

Then I'd like a late breakfast, bacon, eggs and cat head bisquits.
With a little pear preserves on the side.
A tall, cold glass of milk to wash it all down.
These are things I'd do on a day of perfect weather.

Most of the rest of the day, I'd dink around, wherever I could.
Mowing some grass, pulling a few weeds.
Sweeping the porch and watering some plants.
Go down to the pond, and cast around, see if there are any hungry fish.

The day of perfect weather would end on the porch also.
Rocking and watching the sun go down, sipping on some sweet tea.
Reviewing the events of the day, and planning for tomorrow.
Hey, what's for dinner? Who me? Cook?

Thursday, March 29, 2012


Describe your idea of perfect weather.
I'd like to say that any day the weather is perfect, because every day is a gift. The weather must be perfect for every day. Now, it might not be perfect for our desires and plans.

The type weather I prefer is about 75 degree temperatures, or a little warmer, but not too hot. Spring weather is great. Every thing grows, and is either vibrant green or producing blooms and flowers.
Check out these beautiful bachelor buttons.
They looked like a carpet of pink! Now this is nice weather that promotes blooms like this, and it's still nice enough that you can get outside and enjoy nature!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Would you rather have it be very cold or very hot outside?
It is easier for me to get outside and be active when it is hot. I love the outdoors and all the activities that go along with the outdoors. When it's warm outside, we stay outside until late in the evening, and then once we get inside the house and get cleaned up and fix something to eat, then it's almost time to go to bed. Warm weather will make it difficult for me to get to the computer to blog.
I'll post pictures later of our garden project that we worked on today.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Snow Resentment

How do you feel about snow?
I have a snow resentment this year. This is about the greatest accumulation we had in our area.
I managed to get a snow day off work, but it didn't last very long, and there just wasn't enough to have fun with. The wild life and livestock appreciated it, I'm sure. But I'm always wishing for some good snow every year, I guess because we only have a little snow occasionally.

I like to stay home and not go anywhere. If I don't have to work, my goal is to stay at home as much as possible. So to have a snow day, and be "trapped" in the house, is bliss for me! Where I come from, since we don't have much snow, we don't drive very well on snow or ice. And we tend to get more ice than snow usually.

Bear laughs at me and says that I have a "snow resentment" when we have snow forecast, and then it doesn't snow enough to miss work. He says that I'm worse than the kids. He might be right!

Now the winter before last, we had several good snows of several inches. It was just lovely here.
Love this tree. It stands outside the bedroom window of the old farm house, overlooking the pond.
Another great scene from the old farm house.
Love this barn in the winter! Love this barn in the summer!
Here the cow girls line up to eat hay and try to stay warm during the snow.
This is a scene from where I work. Can you believe I had to go to work with this much snow on this bank? This reminded me of a Bev Doolittle painting. There's nothing "camouflaged" in this shot.
Was nice to remember my snow memories, especially on the eve of an 80 degree day ahead!
Thank you!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Where it begins

How do you feel about rain?
I feel very passionate about rain.
But not very vocal tonight.
The Bear says I wasn't too passionate about the rain when it rained all through my Spring Break.
But I didn't complain.
I really didn't mind.
I felt like the rain was so needed, and it washed some of the nasty yellow pollen away.
It nourished the green grass and the trees.
There's been so little of it the last few years.
I try to never complain or criticize inconvenience of the rain.

I love a wide open space, where you can see the rain travel across the horizon.
There's nothing better than to see it coming.
I have one memory of being caught in the rain on horseback.
I was on the back of the property, and could see the rain approaching me.
I know why they call it driving rain and sheets of rain.
That's how it falls, in sheets, when you can see where it begins and ends.
I'll never forget that experience.

Sunday, March 25, 2012


So, the Bear was right, I was wrong.

He made a prediction last Saturday, the beginning of Spring Break, that I would be frustrated and exhausted by the end of the week.
Oh, he's only partly right.
But don't tell him I said that part!
I am exhausted, but not totally frustrated.
I'll not bore you with the details of what I did accomplish, though that would be the "healthier" approach for me to take.
See, I have this problem, yes, another one.
 I try to fit ten gallons of "stuff" in a five gallon bucket, as my husband refers to my "problem".
I get it from my father, he's the same way.
I have ten hours of daylight, so I plan a thousand chores!
Then when the day is done, I have trouble appreciating the things that were accomplished, because I was unable to complete all my tasks.
Is this a pessimistic attitude? Half full/half empty kinda thing? Hmmmm.
I hope not, because I think I'm actually rather optimistic for the most part.
But I like to get things done.
So, just to indulge myself at the end of my week off work, here are some of the things I didn't complete in relation to blogging:
  1. A picture of the Italian Cream Cake from my dad's birthday party, that went very well.
  2. The taxes, not related, but bothers me as April 15th approaches!
  3. An introduction of myself on my blog. I've never finished setting my page up!
  4. I didn't get to read all the blogs that I wanted to!
  5. I have no pictures for today, nor any of the events I have in mind to blog about.
So, I'm feeling better, as I reflect on all the accomplishments we did make.
Looking forward to a new day!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Waylon, hay bales and fiddle heads

Today was a beautiful day!
Blue skies, nice breeze, and comfortable temperature.
I spent most of the day by myself.
That was a good thing.
I did make a short trip to recycle and pick up a birthday cake for my dad.
 Italian Cream Cake from Ambrosia, I'll post pictures tomorrow.
I made the Pioneer Woman's White Chicken Enchilada's and Restaurant Style Salsa.
I also stopped in down at the hay barn to meet my husband and son, who were hauling hay.
I got to see Waylon. He's a sweet boy. His daddy is Trigger. But he looks more like his momma Oakley.
These are the hay bales they were hauling.
We found a good deal on fertilized hay from last year that had been kept in the barn.
We decided to buy them because we had a really difficult time growing and buying hay last year.
Our area has been in a drought situation for a couple of years now.
Though not as severe as Texas and Oklahoma has suffered.
I needed a "hay smuggler" last year.
Do you know, that I actually spoke with someone that knew a "hay smuggler" from New Jersey.
So, I can't imagine how you smuggle hay. I guess I don't have a criminal mind!
On to the sweet little fiddle heads!
Aren't these sweet? The Bear thinks I'm crazy!
Maybe I am, but when I cleaned out around this fern in the ground and saw the new little babies coming up, I just had to get a picture!

And this is why they're called fiddle heads.
Off to bed I go, it's been a long day!

Friday, March 23, 2012

No clothes

When is it good to have no alternatives?

The best time to have no alternatives is in the morning for me. Not just any morning, but on the days that I get to go to work or I have an appointment or deadline to meet. I'm actually thinking of my closet, my clothes and the choices I have to make every day regarding what to wear.

I've found that what works best for me, is to leave myself with no alternatives in the morning.  Hmmm, how can you accomplish this? Well, I began going to the gym several years ago. I tried to go after work in the evenings. But it seemed that it was often easy to convince myself that I was "too tired" to go and work out or too busy that day. And often it was difficult to find the time in the evening after work to go to the gym, then get home, cook dinner and get ready to do it again the next day.

 I began going to the gym in the mornings. This was not an easy thing to get into the habit of doing, if you're not a morning person already. I was never a morning person, I prefer to stay up late at night, and sleep in the next morning. When I awake, I'd prefer to eat cereal and drink coffee, watch a little news on the TV. In case you're wondering, I'm still trying to get to the point of no alternatives!

 My largest obstacle, and most time consuming daily task was making a decision about what I would wear to work. Remember, I said I was not a morning person, so here's what happened in the mornings, I would stand in my closet, with a cup of coffee in hand, and stare at my clothes. Still kind of in a sleepy haze. I would finally make a decision, then change my mind. If I picked out a pair of pants or a skirt, then I'd have to choose a blouse or top. Then I'd second guess myself, and start looking for a better alternative. This could go on long enough that I would end up being late for work or having to rush to get to work on time.

In order to meet the six a.m. exercise class at the gym, I had to streamline my routine at home. Since I am not a morning person, I wanted to stay in bed as long as I could. I began choosing my clothes the night before, and this is not something I have ever perceived myself doing! I always wanted to wait and see how I felt that day when I chose clothes. Back to picking out my clothes at night, this was a great motivator to make a choice, because by the time I was in the closet picking out clothes, I was tired and ready for bed. So it became easy to make a decision, because I could then go to bed.

The best part of going to the gym and getting ready for work there is that I have no alternatives regarding my clothes at that point. I have what I have to wear. Not to say that I might have to make a mad dash to the store for a necessary item, because it's too far to go back home.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Would you rather make decisions alone or try to work them out with another person?
If I have enough information to make the decision, I'd prefer to make it myself.
I'm just kinda stubborn in that way.

Here's what's been happening on the farm:
This is Trigger, my neighbor dog, belonging to my son, sits patiently outside. He's keeping an eye on my grandsons, just waiting for them to come out and play.
Out in the field you can see a tree has fallen. The boys were out on the porch when the tree fell.
The ground was saturated, and it just fell over.
My son said that we were lucky, our firewood fell practically at the front door.

 While we were rained out, there was a multi-generational war taking place in the house, with the major battleground on the desk.
Here we see the army snipers on the roof shooting at the cowboys, Indians and civil war soldiers.
Notice on the left, we have an Indian in full head dress mounted on a Charlois cow.
This was a tough battle!
Here the cow girls gather around the fallen tree to strip the new, tender green leaves from the branches.
This was one day I could say I had cows in the tree tops!