Friday, July 21, 2017

Friday Foto Friends #881

One of my special pleasures is sharing my photos. I am glad and honored to share with you all on Friday Foto Friends.

An evening visitor. She comes in and eats her way through the garden. Fortunately, I didn't get anything planted this year, and we can just enjoy her company.
 One of our resident bunnies. In 26 years living here this is the first time we have even seen bunnies. Now they are everywhere. But they are so gosh darn cute.
An evening snack. I think she is going to be adding to the bunny population. She looks sort of chubby.

 The blackberries are coming along. About a month to go. With the heat we are having this summer it should be a good crop. These are wild. I will have to race the birds for them.
 Just because I really like this photo.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Wednesday Hodgepodge #314

I am glad to be joining in for the fun with the 314th Hodgepodge this week.

Hodgepodge Questions-Volume 314

From this Side of the Pond

1. Growing up, were you close to your grandparents? Tell us one or two specific things you remember about them.
My mom's mother lived with us when I was a very small child. What I remember is a very stern German woman who would speak in German when she got angry. Which was most of the time. She got mad at my mom, moved out, and went to live with friends.  Eventually she went to Colorado to live with my aunt.  On my father's side the grandparents only made an appearance once a year at Christmas. He would drive her over and wait in the car while she brought the gifts into my brother and me (or is it I? I can never remember). 

2. What's an item you were attached to as a child? What happened to it?
I had a ratty old blanket with silk around the edge. I carried that thing with me everywhere. I was like Linus that way. I think my mom had to wait til I was sleeping, and pry it out of my arms just to wash it. I think it probably just disintegrated over time.
I also had a doll. A Thumbalina doll. She has a knob on her back that if you turned she would move her legs like a baby. I think she got lost somewhere in a move. I am now looking for one. But, lordy she is expensive! The lowest price I have seen was $50 and the highest was $175. She was from the mid 60's and made by Ideal. If you have one or know of one that you would be willing to sell please let me know.
3. When you look out your window, do you see the forest or the trees (literally and figuratively)? Explain.
Living in the middle of 10 acres that are trees I do see the trees. Hard not to. Figuratively, I often get so focused on the work at hand that that is all I see. I think for me it is a defense mechanism.

4. Do you like sour candies? Which of the 'sour' foods listed below would you say is your favorite?
I do like a sour candy once in a while. I guess my favorite would be a green apple taste.
grapefruit, Greek yogurt, tart cherries, lemons, limes, sauerkraut, buttermilk, or kumquats 
I love grapefruit with a bit of salt. This summer I am really into making fresh lemonade. and I love sour kraut with pork ribs. I have never had a kumquat. 
Have you ever eaten a kumquat? What's your favorite dish containing one of the sour foods on the list
I have never eaten a kumquat. I probably never will just because of the name.
5. July 1st marked the mid point of 2017. In fifteen words or less, tell us how it's going so far.
Fortunately, 2017 has been pretty mild compared to last year. Last year brought the first signs of my husband's dementia and hallucinations.  I have researched and am in overload, and have spoken with his doctor to the point of becoming a pest. I don't know if I am dealing with it any better, but I do have better understanding. I mean how do you deal with a hallucination that never goes away, but only gets worse. This latest one has been going one for a couple of months now. There is a big story involved.  If it weren't so sad I would laugh.
6. Insert your own random thought here.
A conversation with my son:
Him:  Mom, do you have any of Grandma's jewelry?
Me:     Yep, I have all of it.
Him:  Did she have any rings?
Me:    No, unfortunately she never wore rings. Why?
Him:  Mom! Why do you think I would be asking about rings?
Me:     Well, Kiddo I am sure I won't know until you tell me.
    My photo is in the dictionary by the word dense. Yes, yes it is a true fact.  He and his GF have been together 5 years. He is going to give her a ring. I am beyond thrilled. She is the best of the best. They are so good together.

An evening visitor
 Mommy bunny. In the 26 years we have lived here this is the first time we have ever seen bunnies. And have we seen bunnies! I think mommy looks like she will be bringing more into the flock. Are rabbit families called a flock? I have seen 3 different sizes of bunnies recently.
 Just because.

Friday, July 7, 2017

If it's Friday it must be time for Foto Friends #86

Last Thursday I met up with my cousin, and we went and visited an old family friend. This lovely woman is 95 and just as sharp as she was when I was growing up. She and my mom grew up across the street from each other. When D married she and her husband bought property on a lake and opened a resort. They also rented boats and motors. He has been gone a while now, but D is still there. She doesn't rent out anything now, but loved sharing our memories with us.

It was a wonderful place that I have so many memories of.  My family, which consisted of my mom, brother, and myself would go to the lake with my uncle, aunt, and cousin.  We would bring the cane poles, lawn chairs, and picnic baskets. Yes, us and all of the accouterments for the day went in the little VW bug.  We got some really strange looks form other drivers.
I would love to show you D's sweet face, but I forgot to ask permission. I don't know how she would feel about it. You will have to settle for photos of the lake.

Everything about the lake was as I remembered. The boat house was even the same color. There are a few more weeds than 30 years ago, but that just makes for good fishing.
We had a wonderful visit, but time passed quickly and soon it was time for us to leave. We left with promises of not staying away for so long, and also of promises of a boat and motor next time we/I come. A fishing licence is on my must buy list.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Hodgepodge Questions-Volume 312

The time really does  fly by. Especially during the summer months. To me the 4th of July has always signified the middle of summer. I know technically it isn't, but it feels that way.
 I now go to Hodgepodge celebrating the 4th of July.
I could not get the Hodgepodge symbol to my blog this morning. Sorry about that.
Here we go-

1. When and where were the best fireworks you've ever seen? Speaking of you know your hot buttons? The things people can say and/or do to set you off? When was the last time someone pushed one of your hot buttons?
I think the best fireworks I ever saw had to have been in 1986. My son was 2 years old, and it was the first time he had seen fireworks. He was thrilled and amazed and excited the way only a child can be. Of course, when it was all over he was heartbroken, but we moved past that. Then he wanted to know how they were made and why they disappeared. 
My HOT BUTTONS are pushed when I am told I can't do something. Not anything illegal just something I want to do. I don't think I should have to ask permission to do what I want so being told no is a real button pusher. I see red when I am called an idiot. 
I get very angry/upset when I see a parent mistreating a child. If they do this in public I wonder what it must be like at home. I have stepped in before things got out of hand. Animals left in hot cars.
2. Have you hosted any outdoor summer parties this year? Attended any? What makes for a great outdoor party?
I have not hosted any parties this summer. It seems as if our hosting days are over. I was just missing that activity yesterday. In August I will be a guest/ host at a family party. My BFF's dad and step mom are coming into town. Yes, I am an official non-family family member. Her dad is very, very special to me. I knew him in high school, but didn't meet my friend til a year after. Strange but true my own family is having a reunion and I won't be attending.

3. What does freedom mean to you?
Freedom is pretty much what our Founding Father's thought it was. I want to be able to go where I want and when. I want to be able to speak my opinion and  not be  fearful.  I want to believe in God and practice my religion without fear.  I want to be able to have conversations with like minded people, and with those of different opinions.

4. July is National Cell Phone Courtesy month...what annoys you most about people's cell phone habits?
I really hate to see people driving while talking on their phone. Holding it up to their ear. I talk and drive, but I either use the speaker part of the phone or a headset. It takes less concentration this way. Concentration I can use for my driving. Holding the phone means driving one handed and not paying as close attention to the activity on the road.

5. What's your current summer anthem?
I'm not sure I understand what is required here. So I will go with music. One of my favorite songs of the summer is "Drift Away", by Dobie Gray.
You may listen to it here I hope:
If by anthem it means how I am living my summer it is by trying to stay cool. Brief periods outside, longer periods in the A/C. Flea market, garage sales and back into the a/c car.
6.  Insert your own random thought here.
I never thought of myself as being the blonde that blonde jokes come from. However, the consensus is that I truly am. What a shock. Here is why.
 I have tried to be a vegetable gardener, but have failed miserably. After several tries I gave up, and only grow flowers. I have much better luck. 
I was with my BFF at a nursery while she purchased plants for her garden. I started talking to the Master Gardener about my vegetable growing problem. 
 He asked all sorts of questions. How much did I water, what nutrients did I give my plants, did I make sure to weed. I answered just fine right up until he asked if my vegetable plants got flowers. I answered yes and I always made sure to dead head them. Wrong answer!! And there is my problem. I guess everyone in the world knows that you don't dead head vegetable plants, because that is where the vegetable comes from. 
I became blonde in just those few moments. However, that day at the garden center I did give some comedy relief to anyone who happened to overhear our conversation. Oh, and everyone my BFF called to tell the the story. 
I really don't mind, but I think I will color my hair red.

And what would my hodgepodge be without a photo.

This was taken at Limestone Lake in Minnesota.  We used to go there fishing and for picnics. The husband and wife who owned the area had a resort and rented out boats and motors. The wife grew up across the street from my mom and uncle. The Mr. has gone gone a while now, but Mrs. is still there at 95. She doesn't rent out anything now. I had the privilege of visiting with her last Thursday, and am making plans to go back. This time to fish and to visit some more.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Foto Friday Friends #84

If it's Friday it must be time for Friday Foto Friends. This is number 84.

After months and months of computer problems I think, maybe, I hope, and pray they are all fixed. 

Here we go:

An uninvited guest. He came into the yard a few weeks ago. Took down my bird feeder. He tried to get into the porch. It is a bit disconcerting to see his claw marks on the outside of the door. I am very thankful that they are on the outside and not the inside.

 The quality isn't the greatest. I wasn't about to go outside and ask his permission to take his picture. These were taken from the living room window.
 The iris' were blooming in my BF's garden while I was in the city.

It looks like a heart giving me a glimpse of the sky. It is the first thing I look at when I go outside for my morning coffee. I'm thinking of taking a photo each and every morning to see the different looks of the sky. Isn't God great to give me this heart? 
This little dragonfly took a nice long rest on my car's antenna one day. Every once in a while he would flit away, but come right back. I love his wings.




Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Hodgepodge Questions-Volume 311

After months of computer problems I think, maybe, I hope, they are all fixed. I miss the Hodgepodge when the computer is down. I am happy today to join in on the fun!

From this Side of the Pond

1. The first day of summer rolls in later this week. What are ten things you'd put on your list of  quintessential summer activities? Will you try to manage all ten this summer? 
1.  Parades
2.  Picnics
3.  Fireworks
4.  State Fair
5.  Fishing
6.  Out of town visits
7.  Family Reunion
8.  Going to Flea Markets
9.  Window Washing
10.  Bear watching
I will more than likely go on a picnic or 2 with friends when I am in the city. While there we'll probably watch the Whiz Bang Parade. And, later the fireworks. I would love to go fishing, but it doesn't seem likely. I will be going out of town several times this summer visiting friends and relatives. In fact,  on the 29th of June I going to go see my best cousin. We will be visiting with an old family friend and going to the flea market in Detroit Lakes. I will not be going to the family reunion. My windows may or may not get washed. And,  YES I will be on bear watch (more on that later)
2. Do you collect seashells when you're at the beach? What do you do with them once you get them home? What's your favorite place to comb for seashells? I don't collect seashells. However, I do walk along the shoreline and collect rocks. Mostly agates. When my son was young we would put them in the rock polisher to shine them up. Once shined they would go into clear jars to show off their beauty. Nowadays, however, I bring them home and put them unpolished into jars. The rock polisher died an agonizing death from overuse many years ago.
How many of these 'best beaches for hunting seashells' have you visited? Which one would you most like to visit? Calvert Cliffs State Park (Maryland), Jeffrey's Bay (South Africa), Sanibel Island (Florida), Shipwreck Beach (Lanai Hawaii), Ocracoke Island (North Carolina), Galveston Island (Texas) and The Bahamas
I haven't been to any of those beaches. When I lived in North Carolina we did go to a beach on the ocean, but I don't know if it had a name. I've been to a beach on the Pacific Ocean but, again I don 't know if it had a name. If  I were to get the chance to go to a beach somewhere I wouldn't choose any of those listed. I would instead go to Maine to walk the shoreline there. Or to England to see the White Cliffs of Dover.
3. At a snail's pace, shell out money, come out of your shell, go back into your shell, drop a bombshell, happy as a clam, clam up...which 'shell' phrase could most recently be applied to some event or circumstance in your life? Explain. If I am waiting for something to happen I want it to happen quickly to be done with the waiting. But, usually things crawl along at a snail's pace. I don't have a shell to go back into. I am always out. Typical extrovert. Most of the time I have to clam up. I have always been outspoken. To the point of bluntness, but the last few years I have been trying to tamper that urge. Sometimes successful, sometimes not so much.
4. What summer activity do you dislike? Why? Does doing a tick check every couple of hours count as an activity? I know what Lyme's can do to a person so I am more than a little cautious about getting the buggers off  me. How about swatting mosquitoes? They are the unofficial state bird. We have more than our share. Wiping the sweat of my face (I don't shine. I sweat)? Killing ants on my kitchen counter? Seriously though I don't like the noise and litter that summer tourists bring. They buy up all sorts of firecrackers, and think nothing of setting them off at all times day or night. They think nothing of throwing an empty beer can out a car window. These are tourists or what we call summer people right in my immediate area. I know not all summer people are this way.
5. What's something you see as quickly becoming obsolete? Does that bother you? Compassion, tolerance, manners, respect, love of God. That loving God is becoming obsolete bothers me more than all of the others. I think if people do love God the other things just naturally  follow...mostly. It is my belief that we are getting close to end times, and to not love God places those people in a very precarious situation. So, yeah it bothers me.
6. Insert your own random thought here. I mentioned being on Bear watch. Every time I step outside I look around before I leave the safety of the stoop. I always wear a bear whistle when outdoors. Even if it is just sitting on the patio. We have bear in the area. Like in my woods! He/she has been here 3 times being nosy. The first time I got pictures which I will share. They were taken from inside the house (duh) so the quality isn't the greatest. He ruined my bird feeder and tried to get into the porch. It is disconcerting to see his claw marks on the outside of the door. I am just glad they are on the outside. My husband guessed between 300-350 pounds.

The dragon fly was having a rest on the antenna of my car. I love the wings. I had to share.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Friday Foto Friends

     I can't believe it is Friday already. However, I am very pleased. I love nothing better than sharing my passion with you all. This week it is all about birds and bird feeding.

Mr. or  Mrs. Mourning dove
Not Woody, but another type of woodpecker. Not sure of it's kind.
An Indigo Bunting. Tiny and Elusive
Male Rose-Breasted Grossbeak
Mrs. Grosbeak

Male Oriole
Mommy Oriole. Even in the rain the other day she came to eat. Look just how soaked she is.  I wanted to put the umbrella up for her.
We have polite birds that wait their turn. Sometimes.
Just a peak down our driveway. The leaves aren't fully out yet. I will show another one when they are out.

I hope I didn't overdue it with the photos. I had a difficult time just choosing these few.

Next week I am in Minneapolis. A very different group of photos from there.