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Flowery Friday…

I was going to post photos of this and other plants in my garden blog, but we are in the process of putting our house up for sale and I’m debating what to do with all my plants.  If I end up not being able to take a lot with me, I’m not sure I want to see photos of everything I’ve left behind, it may be a bit painful…

The flower in the photo is the single bloom on a hydrangea that my husband purchased several years ago as an Easter plant.  While I know many plants that are forced into bloom don’t always survive easily, I always try planting them in the garden to see if they will thrive. 

This particular plant has not done well,  would grow less than a foot and then die back.  I’m not one to baby plants, they either thrive or they eventually die or find new homes and are eliminated from the garden, but this one did neither. Finally, I gave up, pulled it out and temporarily placed it near the River Birch simply cause I wanted to give it another chance.   Occasionally, I’d throw some discarded coffee grinds in that area.

I noticed about a month ago, that as usual the plant was about a foot tall, then a few weeks ago, I could see that it was actually going to have at least one bloom.  On Monday I took this photo.

Yesterday I took this photo ….. The color is stunning!  It seems to love the rather unkempt area under that birch.   I’m adding this to my list of plants that I’ll consider taking if we move.

As for selling our home.  We hadn’t planned to sell our home till next year.  But, we found a simple ranch we like. It is smaller than this house, but easy to care for, less time consuming and gardening area that is pretty much a blank canvas.  However, the purchase of that house is contingent to a quick sale of this one.  Rather than stress over selling and moving, I’m just handing it over to God. I’m ok if we move or stay, after all, a home is more than just a house. But, it seems most friends and family are all hoping we don’t sell the house, because they all love this house,  I find it very interesting and rather amusing.


I took this photo from my deck just as the sun was setting.  I’m used to seeing rainbows after a rainstorm and during the day, but I can’t remember ever seeing one this late in the evening.


Anyone remember that show where someone would try to finish a project in a weekend? 

This weekend we had things that needed to get done.. mowing, trimming, and moving some furniture. We also wanted to go see a house that is for sale. Now normally, these things wouldn’t have been a big deal, but the kids were catering a wedding and so grandson Connor was here most of Saturday and till after noon on Sunday.  *G*  Does anything get done quickly with an almost 2 year old is helping?  And to top it off, it was hot and humid which means we move a little slower. We did what we could with him around, but left the house visit and furniture moving till he was gone.  

What you are seeing in a small room off our bedroom. I believe at one time it was a sleeping porch. It hasn’t really served any purpose the last few years.  Even though we are thinking of moving in the future, I decided it was time to put that space to use. At the same time I needed a place to set up a library.  We moved one of the bookcases out of a guest room and then wrestled the other one up the stairs..  If you have ever moved furniture up the stairs of an older home, you know what fun that is.  Anyway, it all turned out well and I have been collecting books from all over the house and putting them in this room where I can sort through them, decide what I want to keep and what needs to find a new home.  My legs hurt from going up and down stairs.

We also moved the matching desk into this room, added a desk chair, another armchair and footstool and it is very cozy, a great place to sit and read, listen to music or get some paperwork or pc work done.  We already have an office/den to work in, but if we do sell our home, an extra space for parents might be a good selling point.  It has a large window in each of the short walls.  You can see the edge of the desk in the first photo. The second photo shows our garage from the opposite window… its a long way down!  And the reason why we are considering moving… stairs…

Oh and here is our little helper, working very hard…

In 1983 we purchased a home on a hill at the edge of a state forest in NY state.  After moving in, we realized there were several hundred raspberry bushes on the property.  I never really liked raspberries up till then, but I quickly learned to love them.  In that area,  red raspberries are red caps, black raspberries are black caps. Along with those we had blueberries, wild blueberries and blackberries. 

   We lived there for almost 10 years and the berries became the kids summer business.  They would pick the berries early in the morning, then set up a table at the end of the driveway, keeping the berries cool in a cooler.  Neighbors and small local markets quickly became regular customers, often putting in orders for large amounts, days or weeks ahead knowing we’d have ripe berries by July 4th each year and again in late summer or early fall.   I would often keep a lot of the late berries for our own use, stocking up the freezer and would take some to the nursing home for my residents. 

  When I realized we might be moving, I transplanted some of the berry bushes to mom’s yard and then the 3 years later moved them to our current home.  Only a small number survived, but enough that by July 4th each year, we can count on at least a pint to a quart of berries a day for almost a month.  

  Photo of berries picked today… they are darker than they appear in the photos.  The ones in the bowl will be eaten fresh, the ones in the tray will be frozen for later use.   I like to freeze them in a single layer, using small trays that can be stacked, giving the trays a shake occasionally so the berries don’t clump together. Once frozen, I can pour them into a bag for loose packed, easy pour berries. They thaw out quickly this way, retaining their shape better.  My favorite way to use the berries is to make a simple raspberry sauce and drizzle it over ice cream, pound cake or other desserts and I also like them in pies.

  Grandson Connor has discovered the blackcaps and quickly learned the very dark ones are the sweet ones.  However, he hasn’t learned how to avoid the raspberry thorns and so we help him pick berries.  To him all the berries are simply ‘backberries’ and he would happily make an entire meal of them.  His parents are catering a wedding today and so I’m babysitting him.  Lunch was a simple sandwich as he’d been snacking a little while before lunch.  Actually the only reason he was eating lunch was to get him to sit still for a few minutes… *G*  When he only had 1/4 of his sandwich left, I gave him some berries, the sandwich was immediately abandoned. 

That refrigerator that died last week and caused me a bit of work and stress, moving or giving away food. 

Well… its not dead. 

We contacted a used appliance store that will pick up fridges that look good, repair them and then sell them at a very good price.  The lady that Ruben spoke to asked if we had tried turning off the fridge for a day or so, letting it sit and then turning it on.  Are we the only ones that have never heard you should try this?  So, we did and of course it was roaring along rather nicely, cooling just fine.  

If Mom were still alive, she would laugh and say …  A Dios No Le Gusta Feo …  which means…  God Doesn’t Like Ugly.

I have complained about the noise that fridge makes, I could hear it a floor above or below.  And while I like listening to music and such, I also like quiet, very much dislike the constant sound of a loud motor running.  To me, it is the same as having a TV going all day.  Of course, whenever I complained,  I would stop and think that I should be grateful for a fridge that works. 

That is the ugly part.  Mom would have told me that I should be on my hands and knees Thanking God for providing us with the means to have things that other people would love to have. To be ungrateful is ugly.  

So, now we have two fridges.  The one inside hums and the other, in the garage for now, still roars and there is no guarantee that it  won’t continue to have problems.  We haven’t decided what to do with it.   Every time I stop and think that we could have used that money for needed home repairs, I remind myself that I got exactly what I asked for. 

The 3 days I spent running around dealing with moving food and finding a new fridge were days I’d really needed to catch up on studio work and customer orders, orders that I’m just now, a week later, working on. 

Reminder to myself:  Don’t be Ugly

Actually my birthday isn’t till later in the month. However, not one to wait till the last moment, I already have my birthday gift, a green IPOD.

  I’m not one to buy a lot of gadgets and so this is a bit of a splurge for me.  But, I listen to music … a lot!  I listen to music while working, relaxing and in the car.  I find myself constantly rotating my favorite cds from the house, studio and car.  The IPOD allows me to load them and then dock it into the base where I am, or listen to it using the headset, only one little thing to carry with me instead of multple CDs.

Another reason I wanted one was so that I could subscribe to devotional, fiber related and other podcasts and listen to audiobooks.  I enjoy reading as much as I enjoy listening to music, but often I forget to take a book with me when I’m out and about and if I have to sit and wait somewhere for long and there isn’t something decent to read, I get twitchy. *G*

So far, I like it…  I’ve got a variety of English and Spanish music loaded, classic, jazz, opera, salsa and more.   

BUT …..  while I can easily load music to the my pod, I have been unable to load any podcasts… I just don’t know what I’m doing wrong.  And I don’t have a lot of time to spend on playing around with this, there is house painting, garden work and grandchildren to play with in what little free time I have.   Any tips on how to load podcasts would be appreciated.  Otherwise it will have to wait till gardening season is over and I have a bit more free time to figure it out.

Oh.. and any podcast suggestions would be appreciated.    

This is Krystal the Princess (although I have been called other things, some of them not nice) using mom’s pc while she is busy.   

This is what I look like when Mom lets my hair grow long and keeps it neat for me.  Aren’t I gorgeous?

This is what she did to me today…. Is this the way to treat a Princess?  I look like a boy dog! hmmmpf!  She says she doesn’t have time to take care of long hair. How is that my fault? You think she could have at least evened it out so that I wouldn’t look like I fell in front of the lawn mower.

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