10.28.19 Christmas Cookies

Roy and I were at the grocery last week and saw a Blue Bell ice cream called “Christmas Cookies.”  We passed on buying it but after reading Chris Field’s delightful 2017 review of Christmas Cookies ice cream we will definitely be trying it our next trip to the grocery!

This young man, Chris Field, is so much more than a great writer. In a future blog post, I hope to write about his non-profit that helps rescue kids from slavery.

Here is my independent review of Blue Bell Ice Cream’s Christmas Cookies ice cream which was rolled out this week as a seasonal special. Please note: I am in no way affiliated with Blue Bell other than being a Texan that eats (a lot of) their ice cream.

Christmas Cookies ice cream is described by Blue Bell as being “Sugar Cookie Flavored Ice Cream with Chocolate Chip, Snickerdoodle, and Sugar Cookies, Red Sprinkles and a Green Icing Swirl.” What Blue Bell should have said was “if you love baby Jesus, Santa Claus, puppies wearing Santa hats, or the sound of children laughing on Christmas morning–you need this ice cream in your life.” It’s just that good.

Let’s start with the sugar cookie flavored ice cream. Are you kidding me? We could hard stop here and still have a very Merry Christmas. Starting with sugar cookie flavored ice cream is like finding the perfect Christmas tree. You don’t even need to add ornaments. You can. But you don’t have to. But Blue Bell sure did. Hallelujah, they sure did.

The proverbial ornaments here are the bits of chocolate chip, snickerdoodle, and sugar cookies in every bite. Every. Bite. In other words, every bite of this ice cream is the hark that made the herald angels sing. Biting into it feels like the moment when Clark Griswold finally gets all 25,000 of the Christmas lights on his house to come on. And we’re not even done yet.

The red sprinkles are honestly a little forgettable, but the green icing swirl is the star on top of the tree. It is the giant handmade bow on the most beautifully wrapped gift. Imagine a jolly grandmother, with an apron covered in flour, who smiles and hums jingle bells and makes homemade icing all day. This is what Christmas tastes like.

Buddy the Elf is probably involved somehow in making this flavor. Kevin McAllister eats this when he’s not fending off bad guys. And the only thing the Dad in the Christmas Story likes more than his leg lamp is a big bowl of this next to the fire.

I will not be surprised if Santa’s note back to the kids this year is to ask for a bowl of this next time he comes down the chimney.

This ice cream is probably why Rudolph was running. And mouths full of this may have been the reason the night was silent. And while I can’t say for sure that a half-gallon of this was one of the gifts the wise men brought to the stable that night–I also can’t say for sure that it was not.

So get on over to your local freezer section and grab a half-gallon or two to try for yourself. Because Christmas Cookies just came to town.

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Image may contain: 1 person, standing

More from Chris: Two years after writing the most viral ice cream review on the internet, my friends at Blue Bell have sent me 12 coolers worth of Christmas Cookies ice cream to go disrupt for good and bring smiles to some faces. This is so fun!!

Ya’ll have a Blessed Week!

10.25.19 Beautiful weather and two crazy old folks working outside!

Parts of today’s blog post were written to help us remember what and when we did some things. Many times we’ve come back to search through our blog posts to find out what and when we did something, went somewhere, etc. Please read it with that in mind.

Southern Louisiana’s summers are long and painfully hot. We’ve worked outside on our property during the summer but mostly for just an hour or two at a time.

Last week we had two days with lows in the 50s and highs in the 60s!  We worked hard outside all day both days.  This week every day has been nice and cool as well. Our windows have been open all day the last few days! Open windows weather is my favorite time of the year!  Fall has finally arrived here in Southern Louisiana!

My projects this past week were all about pulling weeds!  First I pulled them out of our gravel driveway and our renter driveway. On my butt I scooted up and down the driveways to pull all the weeds out by their roots. Many large piles of pulled weeds were thrown away!

Roy regularly sprays weeds with weed killer but there is always a dead weed left there.  I don’t like how that looks so when I can I pull those dead ones and pull the fresh living weeds up!

These are some of the weeds growing in the gravel.  These type weeds are also scattered throughout the grass and I’ve hand pulled a lot of those as well! Each of these groups of weeds is around 30 individual weed plants with individual roots. Lots of picking and digging around in the rocks and dirt!

Other than the weeds project in the driveways I crawled around on the grass at the new picnic area and pulled several hundred weeds. Getting rid of those weeds will help the St. Augustine back there spread better.

The weeds below are the same as the ones above but since they were in the grass they have gotten cut each time the grass was cut and their roots and stalk got tougher and tougher.

I bet you didn’t think you’d be seeing two pictures of weeds in today’s blog!  Well maybe, knowing me, you are not surprised!

I also raked gravel from the middle of the driveway where it tends to pile up, to along the edge which had been missing rocks for a while. That was a massive project and while doing it I found a couple hundred great rocks for painting!!! The rocks were bleached and are now being painted!

We started out with two spider-like plants when we first moved here. Over time I’ve been able to divide those into sixteen separate spider-like plants. On these two workdays, I used four of them to pretty up more places around our property. I raked pine straw from the driveway and several places around the property. They were used around several bushes and plants. Our vegetable garden desperately needed some work so lots of weeds were pulled and several plants were pruned back and cleaned up!

Other than spending two full days pulling weeds there has been a continuation of our “Creating a Picnic Area” project!

Only one out of the five dying azaleas, that we talked Chip into not throwing away but giving to us, is still living.  They must have been truly dead when we planted them but I had to try! Roy dug up the dead four and last Tuesday we purchased eight Azalea Encore Autum Empress from Bracy’s Nursery, the company I use to work for in Amite.  Encore azaleas are the ones that bloom spring and fall instead of just spring like regular azaleas do. We also purchased one Desirable pecan tree and one Santa Rosa purple plum tree. Bracy’s Nursery is a wholesale only nursery so I am very happy that they still allow me to purchase from them!  Thanks Bracy’s Nursery!

 

Roy’s new garden cart, that he pulls behind our lawnmower, filled with our new plants.

He dug 10 holes and planted the 8 azalea bushes along the fence leading back to the picnic area.  After he planted them I fixed them up with pine straw all around the bottom.

The first photo shows two of the dead azaleas that were pulled up and some of the new azaleas.

The plum tree is in this photo and the azaleas are along the fence on the right-hand side of the photo.

The plum tree is a Santa Rosa Plum. It’s about 6-7 feet tall.  Roy planted it near the satsuma tree that we believe will not produce so it will be removed in the next year.

The pecan tree is perfect and is planted in a perfect location. Every now and then something makes Roy and I really happy and this little pecan tree does it! It’s behind our house a little bit down and to the left of our vegetable garden. It is a Desirable type Pecan which is a paper shelled long pecan.  The type Roy and I grew up eating and loving!

When digging the hole for the pecan tree Roy hit rock hard ground halfway down to the depth the hole needed to be.  He filled the hole up with water to help soften that hard ground.

He filled the hole with three bags of tree planting material around the plant roots.

Ya’ll know how hard my husband works around here.  He went to the orthopedic doctor last week because his left knee hurt.  They did x-rays and gave him a cortisone shot in his left knee. The good news was that the x-ray shows his left knee is not in the same condition his right one was when he needed knee replacement surgery. He got a shot in his left knee where he thought the pain was originating from.

The next day was when he dug the ten holes for the plants.  He had to go back to the doctor Tuesday because the pain was worse from his back, hip and down his leg, so they did Xrays of those areas and he got a shot in his hip and back.  He was given pain medicine and a muscle relaxer.  If he’s not better when the medicine is all gone they will do an MRI so we’re praying for him to be better before anything else needs to be done.

He is now required by his wife to stop all that work and get rest. He’s right in the middle of repairing our back door but that project is stopping also until Roy’s back, hip and leg are better.

So on a lighter side, the weather here is magnificent right now and every day is an invitation to work outside all day.  We’ve been too busy lately to do a lot outside but today I got back to pulling weeds and Roy cut the grass. That’s about as strenuous as I’ll let him get for now!

Next blog post will be about Bo and Peep! Come back to find out who they are!

Ya’ll have a Blessed weekend!

 

 

 

 

10.19.19 Weekend fun for Madisyn, Chip, Misty, Grannie and Samson!

Last weekend I was blessed to spend time with Chip, Misty, and Madisyn.  Lots of love in that hug between Madisyn and her daddy (our son) Chip.

Saturday morning Madisyn climbed in bed with me and we had a wonderful visit! There is nothing better than one of those Madisyn and Grannie talks!

Roy came in to open our bedroom windows because the temperature outside was a beautiful temperature in the 60s.  We loved it!

Here she is while making cinnamon rolls for breakfast. They were delicious!!  That’s Madisyn’s “Grannie’s taking another photo, look.”

Here’s our beautiful Madisyn, growing up way too fast for this Grannie’s liking!

We saw the new Addams Family movie. I was so surprised by the renovation Hammonds AMC Movie theater has undergone. One of the big changes is their new comfy fat recliners for chairs!

Before the movie, we went shopping at the Fuller Shop in Hammond. Lots of second-hand goodies there! Roy and I will have to go sometime when we are in Hammond.

Meet Misty and Chip’s new teacup Maltese puppy, Samson. Quite a big name for a less than 2-pound puppy! Look at how tiny he is all wet.  He’s really loving this! 

Here he is having his hair blown dry! 

Madisyn immediately fell in love with her puppy brother and he fell in love with her!

Madisyn baked brownies for us Saturday evening.  She’s quite a good cook!

We decorated the front of their home and the mailbox for Halloween. It looks great!

Best of all, our weekend ended with Madisyn coming to church with us at Trinity. Lots of people remember Madisyn from when she came here in her younger years.  They were all glad to see her!

I love these weekends with Madisyn.  My brain on Monday and Tuesday was mostly mush but Grannie keeps on going!

Ya’ll have a Blessed weekend!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10.14.19 Pretty Ugly, by A. Shoaib

Our inner talk and how we feel about ourselves is very important. Take a moment to think about how you are treating yourself on a daily basis.

Read this brilliant poem written by A. Shoaib top to bottom.  Then read it again bottom to top!

I’m very ugly

So don’t try to convince me that

I am a very beautiful person

Because at the end of the day

I hate myself in every single way

And I’m not going to lie to myself by saying

There is beauty inside of me that matters

So rest assured I will remind myself

That I am a worthless, terrible person

And nothing y

ou say will make me believe

I still deserve love

Because no matter what

I am not good enough to be loved

And I am in no position to believe that

Beauty does exist within me

Because whenever I look in the mirror I always think

Am I as ugly as people say?

Now read it again bottom to top!

Isn’t the second read through a lot better way to think and see yourself?!

Ya’ll have a Blessed Week!

 

10.11.19 Dear God, by Jean O’Brien

Jean O’Brien has dementia.  On the Facebook Group “Being Patient: Brain Talks” Jean wrote a personal public letter to God about her life with dementia.  A lot of it rang so true in my life. However, I’ve never been mad at God about me having dementia, like Jean has. I believe He gave me dementia for some purpose of His. I have begged him to help me get through it and to let me live as long as possible in a good state of mind. Jean gave me permission to share this letter with ya’ll.

Dear God,

I’m not gonna go through all the, “why me’s?”, which, in the end, is not important and quite frankly, won’t do any good. You know why and that’s just something I have to deal with. It is what it is, something I have come to believe and live with.

I must admit that sometimes, I can get really mad at you, especially on those bad days when everything and anything seems to go wrong, like banging my face with the lid of this big garbage can or getting into the car and smashing my head against the side of it. How could that even happen? I’ve been getting into cars my whole life, I’m a professional, in fact, I even drive one. I shake my head in disbelief! No wonder I’m going cray-cray!

Or how about today that it took me so long to get a prescription authorized by the vet, to lose it just an hour later. Thank you, God, for that young lady who told me that if I lost it, not to worry because I’m in the system. I giggled when she said that! Lose stuff, who, me?

Now I look for things in the strangest places instead of in their “normal” spots, which can literally drive you crazy. Oh, I forgot, no pun intended, that’s what this is all about.

You did go a little too far God, and I’ve been meaning to talk to you about that. You gave me (I don’t know if that’s the right word), all these other physical issues, like having to wear that darn Darth Vader mask at night or arthritis inherited from my mother, rest her soul, at the same time that I’m losing my mind.

That’s really a messed- up combination, God, and now I find out that the emotional side of me is crumbling too. Well, I already knew that, but now I’ve earned the label! It’s like one of those Girl Scout badges! I don’t blame you, God, but you’ve got to cut me a little slack once in a while.

Thank you, that there isn’t much more that can go wrong with me, but then again, I better keep my mouth shut! I’m not mad at you for that, but on those sucky days, I’d just like you to give me a break. You’ve heard me yell at you – well, not AT you, To you, along with some other choice words- sorry about that, God, but I know you understand. Sometimes, I think you’re so busy with the world’s problems that you don’t have time for me or is that I’m just not listening. I know you’re always there.

It’s been almost 3 years since I was diagnosed, and I think I’m dealing with it pretty good, until I’m not. I can accept that one day, I’ll die, like everyone else, and I’m not afraid. I know you’ve got me, or that I’ll grow old and have those moments that everyone just shakes their heads and smiles.

Well, that’s already happening and only you know, God, where this is going to go. Thank you for giving me a sense of humor, although my wife thinks she’s funnier – that’s so cute, along with that spark of hope during this difficult time. I’m not hopeful for a cure, but I am hopeful that this will progress slowly and I’ll live forever and a day, and drive everyone else crazy!

I know it’ll be ok. But I’d like to ask you a favor and give me a head’s up when crazy is about to happen – like whisper in my ear or something. I don’t get any warning with this one, I don’t get to grow into it slowly and anticipate the craziness of my disease before it happens. It just happens, out of the blue, like driving to the wrong doctor or rehearsing in my mind, when it’s time to turn at the light. My memory has weakened but it’s my confusion that paralyzes me and that’s probably the scariest part of this.

Dementia has a mind of its own, how absurd is that, and it has no heart. It robs you of everything you are and everything you have built during your entire life, without your permission-quite frankly, it doesn’t give a crap who you are, where you’re from, how much money you have in the bank-nothing. If it’s gonna get you, it’s gonna get you.

Thank you for teaching me to go with the flow of my new life, to “embrace” it, sorry God, but I hate that word, it just ****** me off, as well as the word journey. I’ll embrace my granddaughter and take the journey of a lifetime- but not this. You’ve got to think of another word – I say Walk, but that’s not enough to describe this.

But please help people understand that this really messes with your mind and that we can easily fall into a deep, dark depression. Please have them learn about everything that can happen to us so that they can handle it better at the time.

Please send us good, supportive people who will lift us up, make us laugh and help us accept this disease, while respecting the fact that we are grieving our old lives.

So anyway, God, I have a couple of things I’d like to ask you for – I figure while I have your attention, I should take advantage of it. So here goes:

Please don’t turn me into a mean old lady, making everyone’s life impossible.

Please give my wife a second chance at love. I don’t want her to be alone.

Please continue to build my kid’s relationship so they always have each other to lean on.

Please put good people, like my wife, in their lives, supporting and loving them just as if I were “here”.

Please guide my kids in their careers so wonderful things come their way that they use to contribute to this world.

Please take good care of my granddaughter and whisper in her ear every night, that Gammaw was blessed to be loved by her.

Please take care of all the babies that I may not “know” or that I may never get the chance to meet.

And finally, God, please watch over and protect my family until we meet again.

Ok God, it’s late, and I know you’ve got a bunch of other people who need you.

Thanks for listening,

I have thought a lot recently about sharing how I am right now in this dementia journey. Jean’s letter to God sounds like my journey in some ways. Jean can still write and communicate fairly well like I can which is what drew me to share her thoughts initially.

I will share it soon. It always helps me to share and I’m always hopeful it helps you be able to care for someone you love better, and for my family to care for me better.

We’re going to have a family weekend so please pray I survive. If surviving on happiness is possible that will be us!

Ya’ll have a Blessed Weekend!

 

10.09.19 1950s Home, Oh the Memories!

I recently put together the post “Name One Thing Kids Nowadays Will Never Experience.”  Yesterday, a young family member shared with me pictures of a 1950’s House they toured last week in Kansas.  Lots of things in the pictures brought back wonderful memories from my childhood. I did some research, found more cool pictures of rooms in that house, so this post is a follow up to “Name One Thing Kids Nowadays Will Never Experience.”

In 1954, Kansas City Power & Light created this ranch-style house as a model home. It was gussied up with all of the latest and greatest technological advancements, which now amuse and delight the nostalgic visitors passing through.

Our home wasn’t as snazzy or had as many electric gadgets as the home in the pictures, but we did have many of the things in the pictures. I thought you all would enjoy seeing some of the pictures from that museum even if those things are not from your era. I had a lot of fun writing about the items in the pictures that I remember in my childhood and youth! And had fun looking through our pictures to find things from when I was a baby and child!

This first one is Christmas in the 1950s. My grandmother Mimi always had a tree like this with the rotating colors projected up on it! As a little child, I loved watching it every Christmas.

We had outdoor chairs and a small table like this and those colored “tumblers” that we drank lemonade and iced tea from! Roy’s family had a BBQ pit like this one.

The bike with the banana seat was all the rage and I had a baby doll stroller just like that.  All of us kids had metal skates that we put on our shoes like the one in this picture.  We used a key to tighten them on our shoes!

Our bathroom wasn’t like this but we did have the lights and the medicine cabinet like this!  Roy and I chose to have medicine cabinets like this in our current house.  Ours do look a bit more stylish than these old ones! Our granddaughter Madisyn was very surprised to see that you could open the mirror to the ones in our house and put things in there! The colored tiles (especially that aqua color) were pretty standard in all bathrooms.

Oh my goodness, this kitchen! Our phone, yes the only one in the house, sat in a little nook in our hallway, this one sat in the kitchen. Every cook wore an apron in those days! Look at the pink countertops! The insulated tall glasses may have been Tupperware.  Some of those were pretty much the same in everyone’s home.  This kitchen is, of course, all-electric because this is a 1950’s electric house.  Our kitchen had a gas stove and was not a countertop type.  It wasn’t until we were married a few years that we ever had an electric range.

Everyone had a square folding table that was used mostly for playing cards or outside parties.  I remember growing up that if we played cards we always put them away on Sundays because the preacher might come by and see us playing cards!  We weren’t playing poker and smoking cigars, we mostly played Rook!  The decorations on the walls look like ones we had!

The wooden salad bowl with matching tongs and the round lazy susan with individual bowls were pretty standard in our friends’ homes!

Look at the ashtray next to the chair!!  People read a lot of magazines back then and I guess smoked while reading! It’s hard to remember when people would smoke inside but they did all the time!

A bread box (I’d love to have one now!) and standard pantry staples in old time cans, etc.!

Inside the refrigerator!  The green stuff in a fluted Tupperware mold on the middle shelf was quite fancy back then! My mama made a pistachio cool whip concoction in one of those.  That’s what the green stuff was! The fridge opens via a foot pedal. This was a very fancy sewing machine for the 1950s.  Mine worked with a pedal on the floor, not like this one!  Everyone sewed back then.  I took sewing in Home-Ec in school and even sewed some of my own clothes back then. The old fashioned radio was very popular as televisions weren’t really plentiful back then!

The baby’s rooms were usually yellow and green because we had no idea what sex our baby was before the moment they were born.  Baby beds back then were so hazardous. We didn’t know any better so we didn’t worry about things like that back then!  The baby bed our two sons (in the late 70’s early 80’s) used had several layers of paint on it and one of the things they played with, in their beds, was a long curly telephone cord.  I’d be arrested today if we had a bed like that!  Crazy isn’t it! When I saw this one at first I thought “nothing odd here.” Then I remembered I used one of those scales to weigh our sons when they were little baby boys.  It was actually what Roy previously used to weigh his fish!!!

Several of these things are still used today, just in different packaging.  Remember flashbulbs, photo corners for putting them in photo albums, metal bandage boxes! We haven’t been able to figure out what the items are in the white box to the right.  Click on the photo to enlarge and see if you can figure out what it is.  Let us know if you do!

I don’t think I had a modern hairdryer until I was in my 30s!  The hairdryer we used when I was young was like this.  We’d put curlers in our hair and put the bonnet on our head, then plug the hose to it to blow hot air in there! We also ironed our hair back then on our ironing board and rolled our hair on large orange juice cans!

My young family member pointed out to her children the old vibrating exercise machine.  She had to find a YouTube video so they could see it in action! I used one of those at the fitness center after both my sons were born!  Chenille bedspreads were what everyone had on their beds!   Bathrooms in these fancy houses had a separate area where the ladies could put their make up on in front of a mirror sitting on a comfy chair. 

To wrap this up, here are a few of my 1950s pictures that include items from the 1950s!  Yes, the baby and little girl in these photos is me!

A baby swing from the mid-50s

Two childhood toys, Dolly’s First Aid and Kid-O.Little girl baby doll playpen, high chair and kitchen appliances as Christmas presents in the 50s

My 1957 baby doll stroller

Every photo I found of our outside chairs had someone sitting in them!  This was the only one that was empty.  Doesn’t hurt that me as an adorable little blonde child was in it!

A real baby’s stroller in the 50sBaby bed in the 50s.  The blanket my Aunt Betty gave me survived and was used by my sons when they were born, and my granddaughter Madisyn with her baby dolls!

Our TV with rabbit ears for an antenna.

Okay my naked baby picture, but it also includes a 50s toaster, coffee percolator, and canisters.

The contact information for the1950’s Electric House is: Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center at: 8788 Metcalf, Ave., Overland Park KS 66212 | 913.826.ARTS (2787)

Ya’ll have a Blessed Week!

 

10.04.19 Creating a Picnic Area – Part Three, Maybe the Final One – for now!

I’ve been sharing with ya’ll the steps we’ve taken to create a picnic area in part of our property we haven’t used for anything before now. This will be the last in this series about “Creating a Picnic Area” until next year when the grass has covered the ground and all the flowers and plants start blooming – hopefully!

Back when we first purchased our property here in Amite it had to be cleared and if we wanted to get to the other side of the ditch, a culvert had to be laid to replace the ditch back there. These first pictures are from way back then.  The circled area is what we are now calling our picnic area.

  This one is looking back from the new picnic area to where our storage building and house were under construction.

What I liked about this photo was that it shows how small our pine trees were when we first moved here compared to how much they have grown to now!

The pictures I am sharing below aren’t going to WOW anyone.  The grass runners and flower/plant clippings don’t look like anything great.  A lot of it is covered with pine straw to give the little clippings a better chance of taking root and flowering.

We’ve done a lot of runner transplanting over the years and since moving here.  I’ve learned the most successful transplant works when the runners are clipped into small segments and any dead blades removed before planting.  It’s so hot outside that I do the cleaning part with a big blanket over my lap, a container with the original runners, a pan to put the new small clean segments in and one for the parts cut off.  In the past, we’ve planted the whole runners and they’ve had a difficult time getting established and survived.  All of these new clean smaller segments are rooting and surviving! Here’s my setup for cleaning and clipping the runners!

This is one of the bare areas that I planted the small runner pieces.

   You can’t really see the little grass pieces in this second bare area but there are at least a hundred of them planted here.

A third small area where grass pieces were planted. We will be planting ryegrass back there to keep the soil in place since there is a slope in all directions.  We have to wait until it is 65 degrees during the day and since it’s still in the 90s here right now, it may be a while!

A hundred or so clippings were planted from lilies, lantanas, hostas, red sister (Florica Cordyline Plant), ferns, Gerber daisies, creeping daisies, spider plants, and other types of green ground cover. I purchased the spider plants and some of the hostas but the rest were transplants. Here’s a bucket of a few transplants.

This is where those plants and more were planted. Mostly all you see of those plants is pine straw on top and all around them!  Next year I’m hopeful we’ll have a big fern, nice lantana plant, and lilies blooming along with the hostas, spider-like plants and other Lillies!!

.Another area where clippings were planted. This area includes a hydrangea plant, marigold seeds, lilies, spider-like plants, hostas, and creeping daisies.

Next to the plants above is a beautiful shaded pathway into the woods between our home and the neighbors across the pond.

Creeping daisies that I am hopeful will grow up the metal trellis.

We’re hoping by next year the grass will have covered the dirt and the flowers will all be blooming.  The two large oak trees back there provide shade there almost all day.

I’ve been working a lot on pulling the pine needles off of all the pine branches Roy cut down. I had some help this weekend from my precious granddaughter Madisyn who is 10.  We spent some time sitting back there in the shade, pulling and pulling.  Some of the pine needles have turned brown and I’ve been distributing them among the gardens and around the trees.

Needles off of the branches. This is about 1/20th of the needles!

While Madisyn and I were plucking pine needles Roy was busy hanging the new hammock.  This one has a pillow and is sooooooo comfortable. Didn’t quite expect this but even though we purchased the hammock on a drastic price cut sale but the chains from the hammock to the pine tree cost twice as much as the hammock!

These five azalea plants came from Chip’s house.  They almost died in this heat. Chip and Misty replaced them with some beautiful gardenia plants. We took all the plants they dug up..  We cut them back as much as possible and belive these five have a chance of living. They are planted along the fence line.

In between two of the azaleas, we placed our little swing that used to be white and now is a Saint’s swing! It holds some fun rocks!

We used the area around the two huge oak trees to plant lots of clippings.  Around this one, we also placed rocks our grandchildren painted for us. One is a baseball field, one is a dance studio, one is a pumpkin patch and one is Madisyn’s school.

Too many different plants to name again are planted around the other oak tree. A lot of the clippings are covered with pine needles here. I painted three rocks that say Happy Fall Yall to welcome people to the picnic area. Of course, there is an LSU and Saints rock and a Southeastern rock is being painted right now! I found metal flower stakes at Dollar General on sale for 50 cents each so you’ll see them throughout the area.

Roy bought an LSU bucket to haul water from the pond to the plants before he put in the water line.  It’s now our official trash container back there!

Fast forward to today and this is what the picnic area looks like from the top of the hill near our house.

Here are some pictures from various angles of the finished area.  Like I said originally the plan is for it to be pretty next Spring and I can’t wait to share that with ya’ll.

 

And now the best part, in my opinion, is the startlingly beautiful view of the pond from the picnic area. If you don’t click on any other photo to enlarge, do it with this one.  I remember when we first went over there to work and after working for a while I turned around and saw this view. I immediately thought, Thank You God for this amazing blessing!

I thought I’d end with this picture of Roy sleeping in the hammock nearest our house.  We’ve spent a lot of time in that hammock while creating this picnic area. I have a video of him snoring while in the hammock but I like being married to him so I decided against sharing that one!    

Ya’ll have a Blessed Weekend!

 

 

 

10.02.19 Name One Thing Kids Nowadays Will Never Experience

I’ve seen this on Facebook several times and you probably have too.  You may have even added a response from your life experience.  I gathered a bunch of responses to share here.

We had it pretty great back then.  Maybe not in all things but I can have selective memory can’t I! Lots of these brought back wonderful memories I hadn’t thought of in a long time.  I hope it brings wonderful memories to you!

  • The happy carefree summer days when (after our chores were done) we felt safe and free to wander around our neighborhoods, farms, communities, etc. without our parents having to worry or fear for our safety.
  • Something we use to do a lot was lay a quilt out in the yard and look at the different cloud formations. We would also lay a quilt out in the yard at night time and look at the stars.
  • Christmas Wish Book catalogs
  • The speakers at the drive-in! Remember those speakers? You had to park “just right” and hope yours worked!
  • Telephones that had a telephone cord, only so long, try to get some privacy, I remember stretching that cord as long as I could!! The struggle was real!! 
  • Milk delivered to your door every other day and placed it in the freezer box by the door. The gallon glass jug had a paper twist lid.
  • Manners, and respect for others.
  • Riding in an open bed of a truck, with my brothers and our dog, on the freeway (highway). And other people just smiled and waved at us!
  • Having to lay on the floor or sit in a chair to have a long conversation on the phone because the cord was so short.
  • Walking or riding a bike to and from school.
  • To be able to play outside and walk the streets without fear. Knowing all your neighbor’s and didn’t have to worry or even have to lock your doors. Respect for family and people in general.
  • Using the card catalog in the library to look up books for term papers.
  • Walking to the neighborhood store to buy some candy all by yourself or with friends. You knew your neighbors and they knew who you were.
  • Muscle cars, big motors with 4 barrel Holly carburetors.
  • Windows open at night because of no air conditioner.
  • Moms being home.
  • One family car
  • The thrill of that most important letter finally arriving in the mailbox!!!!
  • Playing jacks on the auditorium hardwood floor at school when the weather was too bad to go outside.
  • Telephone booth where the door closes and live operator on the line if you want to call collect.
  • Changing the channels by hand on the TV (and there were only THREE channels to watch…if the President came on, your night was shot!)
  • Gas station employees pumped our gas, cleaned our windshield, checked our oil, and the air pressure in tires.
  • Putting on your roller skates on your own shoes and tightening them with a skate key!
  • Being able to play outside safely until 10 pm.
  • Reading the “Burma Shave” signs traveling down the highway.
  • The smell of mimeographed papers at school and big jars of white paste.
  • Checking the phone booth coin return to see if anyone left a dime in it.
  • Returning pop bottles for deposits to get spending money.
  • The taste of an ice-cold Nehi Strawberry Soda that really tasted like strawberries.
  • Catching fireflies in a glass jar as darkness descends.
  • Getting up early to watch cartoons on TV every Saturday morning.
  • Rewinding a cassette tape with a pencil.
  • Mom gave us a quarter for the payphone to call home when an event was over.
  • Returning empty pop bottles to the store for penny candy
  • Reading the cereal box and hoping the toy in the cereal box was found and was cool.
  • Encyclopedias..Saturday morning cartoons..board games..hula hoop..kickball..hide and seek..double dutching..skating..skateboarding..chalk writing on the sidewalks..monkey bars..seesaws..bike riding..popping a wheels..naming things in the clouds..being respectful..using a rotary telephone..or pay phone..no air conditioners ..steel blade fans..turn dial on the Television..washing board ..writing to penpal..etc..etc..etc..
  • Listening to 78 records on a turntable.
  • Ironing handkerchiefs…black and white TV….no garbage disposals…
  • Waiting for someone on your party line to hang up so you can make your call.

I’m sure ya’ll can think of more.  If you do send them to me and I’ll add them to this list!

Ya’ll have a Blessed week!

 

 

 

 

09.25.19 The tree limbs came down, and the pine needles are coming off!

I’ve said it before but I must say it again.  My hubby is a B E A S T!  He’s an old frumpy Beast but nevertheless, he is one!

We usually talk about what our plans are for the next day before we go to bed.  I do best when I have a productive plan, even if it’s just one thing to get accomplished.  Sometimes Roy is like that and then other times I have no clue that I’m going to wake up to the sound of his chain saw running and when I look out the window he is 20 feet up into an oak tree cutting off the bottom branches.

I only caught one photo of him cutting down all of the bottom branches on all of these oak trees.  He doesn’t just cut them down, he cleans the area all up dragging the branches away.

The large pine tree in the front yard by the road had branches that drug along the roof of the UPS and Fed-Ex trucks so they had to park by the road.  He didn’t want them to have to do that so he cut down lots of branches from that tree.

  For the biggest  branches he tied them up to our lawnmower and hauled them all the way to the back of our property where we are creating our picnic area. He can only go so far with the lawnmower so he had to drag the branches the rest of the way.

Here is the mound of pine branches I am working on right now.  I’m removing all the pine needles to create pine straw mulch!  Free! It may take days to finish this project but I’ve already made good progress!After Roy got all the big branches hauled off he picked up limbs, and everything left behind.   This was his first use of his new lawnmower cart. He’s very happy to have this new tool to play with (oops I meant work with!)Since no cows were around for the photos above I wanted to share one that shows what we see out our front window! I love it!

UPDATE ON:

I now have a new used phone which is actually a little nicer than my old one was. It’s really just in better condition since I’ve been known to drop and lose my phone in unsavory places and it had been through a lot before I cut it apart. 🙂 Roy did a lot to put the same things on the new phone as I had on the old phone.  Each day now I’m finding something I don’t have on the new used phone and am working on getting it set up.  I hope this is the only update ever on the phone massacre!

Ya’ll have a Blessed Week!