Sunday, December 25, 2005

Christmas Is Over My Caboose Is Getting Fat....

Well our Christmas is over for another year. Pretty soon I'll be undecorating. I didn't get my outside lights up this year. Next year I'm doing it in November before Thanksgiving no matter what HB says.

Today was real nice all my boys were here early. Austin was a little sick but he perked up enough to open presents. We had French toast and sausages for breakfast. Poor JR had to go to 2 more places today so he couldn't stay very long. JAC and Hollie became engaged on Christmas Eve. It looks like I'll finally be getting some daughters. Maybe a granddaughter or two will come later:)

We had 2 big dinners yesterday so we just had soup and sandwiches today. My brother, Julie, my nephews and their girlfriends all came over and it was the first time we had a Christmas where all the boys had girls and were grown up and driving and having kids and getting married. Wow! I'm in for a whole new ride:)

I planted some Narcissus bulbs a couple of weeks ago. The instructions said they would bloom in about 6 weeks. I guess I got a Christmas surprise:)

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Merry Christmas Everyone! Posted by Picasa

Monday, December 19, 2005

Christmas In Derby, Iowa

We went to my dad's for Christmas this weekend. The trip down there was real nice. It was dark so we could see all the Christmas lights on the houses. There seem to be quite a few more houses than there used to be. All the way down you have to watch out for the deer and when you get into Lucas County you have to watch out for horse and buggies. There are a lot of Amish in that area.

When we got there the boys were already there and we had tacos and waited for my brother to show up. I found out he has started a blog of his own. I don't know the address yet, he wants to put more on it first. It's probably about Ren Faires and sword fighting and stuff;)

Saturday night we opened presents by the fireplace and ate lots of sweets and snacks. I cuddled up to a good book and had some quiet time. I also got to spend quality time with Michael. He is getting so big he weighs 18 pounds now. He's only got eight more to go to catch up with Austin. He is a very good natured baby.

The next morning I had to go to Chariton to get a disposable camera because I forgot both of mine at home. On the way back we stopped at Stephens Forest and drove around. The roads were solid ice so we had to turn around a couple of times so we wouldn't get stuck at the bottom of a steep hill. It was a very beautiful day.

When we got back I started taking pictures of the house. Every year my dad starts decorating his house around the end of October. He decorates every room in the house including the bathroom. Thats Santa taking a bubble bath at the back of the room on the radiator. He sings and makes splashing noises.

This year he decorated a room with my grandma's things. A tree with her ornaments some pillows on the bed, and her christmas dolls and angels.

In the southwest room is the tree that spins around it has lights on it that change colors. My cousin Amodeus was fascinated with it. He can't see very well so he would find a light and follow it around until we stopped him before he got stuck. He didn't try to take anything off he just wanted to follow the lights that change color.

One room in the house is completely emptied and thats where my dad builds his Christmas village. It has everything in it you name it and it's probably there.

We don't even buy him stuff for his village anymore. We just give him gift cards to Hobby Lobby now so he can get what he needs. He waits till after christmas when they go on sale.

He won't stop until after his open house the 7th of January. Everyones invited so if your around Derby Ia that day stop on in:) It's the last house after you go through town you can't miss it. Folks around town call it The Derby Mansion. We think that's funny so we tease him about it. TTFN and Merry Christmas.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Pretty Boy! Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Oh The Weather Outside Is Frightful...

Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!

They might have to get out the plows for this one. People are already having a hard time getting up the hill. They always seem to get stuck in the same spot about 3 houses up. Then they just sit there spinning their tires. HB couldn't find our shovel so they had to sweep the snow with a broom:)

Thanksgiving was very nice. Dinner was good, the kids were all here, and I didn't cry. I did get sick to my stomach the day before but it didn't last long.

My mother has come to stay the winter with us. Her furnace blew up last week. It didn't cause any fires but it made a sooty mess and she doesn't have the means for a new one. So she will be staying here till spring or until we can find a furnace that is affordable.

For 2 weeks I kept telling HB it's real nice out shouldn't we be putting the lights up outside? NO! There not going up before Thanksgiving! We don't have to turn them on until after Thanksgiving. No! There not going up until after Thanksgiving. I'll do it sunday. Sunday it rained. Then it got cold. Now its snowing. I hope he gets them up before Christmas.

Due to the holiday, the weather, and every day life. I didn't get to visit Iowa this month. I still have a week to wait for my camera or else I could have just taken some pictures around town. But next month we are going to Derby, Iowa in Lucas County for Christmas. The way there is kind of boring, but once we get there I'll probably need 2 camera's just to get enough pictures. My dad likes to decorate;)

Sunday, November 27, 2005

What Kind Of Flower Are You ?

You are an Iris:

You are logical, analytical, dignified, and wise.
You are studious by nature and may prefer books
to people. You tend to be a serious person but
are capable of making others laugh with your
dry sense of humor. Friends always benefit from
your advice.

Symbolism: Over the centuries the iris has come to
symbolize faith, wisdom, hope, and promise in

Which Flower are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

First Snow

It started snowing an hour ago and things are already turning white. I think this is one of the nicest first snows I've seen. It started out a little slushy but now it's nice big white flakes. I better go buy some food for the birds.

I finally found the receipt for my camera. I've been looking through all kinds of papers and other receipts for a couple of days now. Finally there was nowhere else to look except the file cabinet. DUH! For some odd reason I put it where it belongs. Go figure.

As soon as Austin wakes up I'm going to take it in and get it fixed. Yeah! Then I'll take some pictures of the snow, and Austie playing in the snow. And some pictures for JL's grandparents calendar. I also need to take some graduation pictures of JR. He keeps saying no; but in the end they always do what I want just to get me to shut up.

Well I better go find some warm clothes and dig out my winter coat and gloves. Hope I don't need a scraper. TTFN.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Missing Dustin

Cloudy and cold outside. The forecast calls for snow later tonight.

Finished the front flower bed yesterday. Going to go out and plant the last of the Iris. I lost a few things this year, the Bee Balm is gone and some lavender but they have been scraggly for a long time. The books said Bee Balm was invasive but mine never went anywhere. I lost a lot of Iris this year, but I have so many it won't make a noticeable difference.

The Christmas Cactus that I got from my nephew's funeral is blooming. Just in time for his birthday. He would have been 19 this week. I sure do miss his smile. I really should start taking my anti-depressants soon or I'm going to be an emotional mess for the holidays.

My camera is still broke so I'll have to put pictures in later. I'm using the regular camera for now. Hopefully it will be fixed before Thanksgiving.

I haven't decide for sure where I'll visit Iowa this month but I'm thinking a day in Madison County might be nice. We shall see.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

If At First You Don't Succeed...

Looks like my tree has finally put on it's fall colors. When the sun shines through the leaves it makes a peachy glow in my living room. Looks like this is the last picture for a little while. Austin climbed up on a shelf and dropped my camera off of it. And now it won't open.

The Ficus tree is still infested. I put it outside and gave up on it. But it won't get cold enough out for it to die. So I'm resorting to plan B. I'm pruning off almost all of the branches and washing it real good. Then I'll put it in a clean pot with brand new dirt and see if that works. If that doesn't work then I give up I promise.

Today is a perfect day to finish up the yard. Thank you JL for getting into trouble so I can work you all day in the yard :) Other than watching babies and organizing different things my week has been pretty boring . So till next time. TTFN.

I Fixed My Blog :)

Well I fixed it but I had to delete the post that broke it so now I have to do it all over again. I did copy it to Microsoft Word first, so all I really have to do is fix the picture and hopefully the comments can be saved.

I'm watching Michael this morning and he has a little cold. Right now he's sleeping in his swing. He will be 3 months old next week. And he's just a cute round little red headed angel baby.

Austin's grandma came and took him to get an x-ray. He fell down the stairs the other day and the Doctor wants to make sure he's not cracked or bent anywhere. Good thing it wasn't a serious fall since I'm not able to take him to the hospital because I'm not his mother. I can't even take him to get a flu shot without a signed paper from his mother. Since I only see her once or twice a month that's kind of inconvenient. Things are going to have to change soon. I want what's best for Austin and right now his mother isn't what's best for him.

It looks like Fall in the backyard and yesterday it started getting chilly. I even had to wear a jacket. The Moon garden is planted and waiting for spring. I had some extra bulbs and Iris so I'm redoing a bed in the front. I went to Home Depot and got more dirt and it was on sale:) Next year I'm thinking of starting a compost bin so I can make my own dirt. The only things blooming in the yard right now is some mums, one little white rose, and a few petunias that must not know summer is over.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

I Broke My Blog

The last time I posted it broke my nav bar. Does anyone know how to remove it? Does it look funny to you too?

Friday, October 28, 2005

A little bit of Iowa - Boone

A couple of weeks ago there was an article in the paper about a survey on what other people in the US knew about Iowa. According to the article not very many people know where Iowa is. And a lot of the people that do know where it is assume it is flat and boring with nothing but cornfields and farm houses. So I've decided to show everybody a little bit of Iowa each month. I agree some of Iowa might be boring, usually when your traveling on the Interstate. But hop on a side road or travel the Scenic River Road and you'll probably find something interesting.

Today we went to Boone County. We visited the Ledges State Park for a little while. It's a very neat park just south of Boone IA. It starts out on top of a hill and you drive one way down a winding road. Close to the top there is a lookout spot where I took this picture. When you get to the bottom there are very tall rock formations that your not supposed to climb but some people do anyway. A small stream winds through the valley floor so there are about 5 places where you drive through the water. The kids really like that part. There are lots of trails and lots of hills to climb. It's a real nice place for a picnic and a great place to take pictures. Of course I only took a couple because we had other places to go.

We hopped into the car and drove for 5 minutes to Boone IA. We went on the Boone Scenic Valley Railroad. The fall colors are almost done but the mighty Oak waited for me so I did find some color. The trip takes about 2 hours and some of the views are pretty cool. You can bring lunch with you and eat it on the train. If I could have gotten here a week earlier mother nature would have been showing off her best colors. But Iowa weather does have a habit of being unpredictable.

Other places in Boone that we didn't have time for was Mamie Doud Eisenhower's birthplace and the Iowa Arboretum which is south of Boone. My friend Jodi, Austin and I had a real nice day even if it was kind of spur of the moment. If you ever go be sure to check departure times beforehand. We almost missed the train.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Trees & Babies

Last night I went to bed thinking today I would plant all my bulbs and flowers that need to go in the ground. But of course when I wake up this morning it's raining. Not a lot of rain just a nice steady drizzle. I'm thinking well I could still plant some, the dirt's not even wet yet. But then JR & JM show up with Michael. I forgot I was babysitting. Looks like the garden has to wait again.

The leaves are finally changing colors around here. Before my dad sold us the house he planted 2 trees 1 in each yard. He has never been very clear as to what type of trees they are. Some type of oak tree he says. I believe it's an oak tree because the leaves don't fall off till the middle of winter. From the very beginning they were strange. The one next door grew really fast. In about 2 years it was a big tree. The one in my yard seemed to not be growing at all. We have lived here for 9 years now and our tree finally got as tall as the house 2 years ago. Now it's growing tall and pretty. But there is still something weird going on. The tree next door is aflame with color and my tree is mostly green. Go figure.

Austin spent the night with his mother last night so I'm trying to catch up on cleaning. My friend Jodi is helping us waterproof and paint the basement. That will be a relief to get done. I've been seeing a lot of spiders so it looks like I'm gonna have to break out the bug spray. I don't get spider bites but I don't want them around the babies.

Well here I am again many hours later. It looks like someone has been spoiling my grandson. He wants to be held when he sleeps. Every time I try to put him to bed he wakes up. Austin came home this afternoon and he wants to be held all night too. So here I sit with 2 babies on my lap and my legs are going to sleep. Guess I'll try to blog some other time. Maybe when I find the time to garden.

Saturday, October 08, 2005


We've been rearranging flowers this week. Dug up almost all the flowers in one bed. Some of them were in the way and some of them needed to be moved so they could grow better.

I put a path in the bed that wraps around the mystery tree and eventually will go up some steps along the fence line. I bought 3 variegated hosta's to put in the shadiest part. Added a cream colored mum and some white daffodils. I'm turning it into a moon garden. So far the only other color in there is yellow so maybe it will be a sun and moon garden.

I have a cute little trellis that has a moon on it. A moonflower would look perfect growing on it. There is white liatris, daisies, queens anne lace and a couple of white iris. So I have a pretty good start. I went to move some lavender plants but they had mold on the roots so I tossed them. That's probably one of the reasons they were not growing well. I'm about halfway done so it should be finished this weekend as long as the weather stays nice.

Took the awning off of the gazebo and doused myself with mold spores. Here's hoping the antihistamines work. Note to self; have someone who is not allergic to mold take down awning next year:)Well I'm finishing this post as the sun is rising so I better get to work. TTFN...

Friday, September 30, 2005

Your Personality Profile

You are dependable, popular, and observant.
Deep and thoughtful, you are prone to moodiness.
In fact, your emotions tend to influence everything you do.

You are unique, creative, and expressive.
You don't mind waving your freak flag every once and a while.
And lucky for you, most people find your weird ways charming!

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Story of a Tree

Sunny and 39 degrees outside.

Last night I was watching the weather channel before I went to bed and they said it was going to get down to 38. So I had to go dig out my robe and slippers in the dark (I didn't want to disturb HB) go outside and drag all the house plants into the house. I didn't grab the big Ficus tree because #1 it was dark,#2 it was heavy and #3 I just don't know if I want to continue fighting the scale that has infested it for 4 years. Of course once I decided to maybe give up, it started looking better than it had in years. Stupid tree.

My HB bought me that tree for my birthday the first year we lived here:) 4 years ago it started dropping leaves and whole branches just shriveled up and died. 2 years ago I cut out 2/3 of the branches because they were so damaged. I don't know if it's bug pee or what, but it leaves a sticky residue on the leaves and surrounding areas. Last winter some of my other plants became infected but they were easier to control because they aren't as big.

So far I've used dish soap, rubbing alcohol, Sevin, Eight, and some horticultural oil Hulub recommended. today I sprayed it with the last of the Eight and after that has a chance to work I'm going to wash off every leaf and branch on that tree. Then I'm going to repot it. Finally I'll spray it again with the oil and cross my fingers.

If this doesn't work I'm going to have to give up and maybe someone will adopt it. It would be very hard for me to kill it on purpose.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Whats Up!

Sunny and warm. Not quite sweater weather yet.

Until the mums bloom I have no flowers to look at. A petunia here and there, the Rose of Sharon and the rose moss are about it. So if Austin lets me I'm just going to concentrate on clean up and redoing a couple of beds. If I can find some dirt.

Sunday we had Michaels first barbecue. At his party he had 2 grandmas, 3 grandpas, 3 great grandmas, 1 great grandpa, 4 uncles, 1 aunt and 1 cousin, his mommy and daddy and lots of friends and family that love him:) He is one month old now and filling out nicely. Pretty soon he will be ready to start his baby blog. His dad is hesitating on the blog idea but his mom is all for it.

The veggie garden has a few giant green tomatoes and a couple of yellow squash here and there. I picked the last good cantaloupe today I might get one more but it looks little. And the watermelon is still growing. Austin went up there today and tried to play with it. Had to distract him with a squash and a little green tomato.

With summer coming to an end it's getting harder to post about gardening. Oldroses inspired me to look and see what I can do with Master Gardeners. Unfortunately the only classes are at least 2 counties away and gas is just too expensive. I did just buy a new book Llewellyn's 2006 Herbal Almanac. Last night I read about how to invite fairies into your garden. I could sure use their help;)

Right now I'm typing with two babies on my lap and one is getting out of control. So I guess I'm done now. (As Austin screams his head off in the background.) TTFN...

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Good Morning Glory;) Posted by Picasa

Rose Moss.  Posted by Picasa

Morning Visitor. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, September 10, 2005

What's New?

Sunny and hot!

A few weeks ago we discovered a watermelon in the garden. Not to be creepy or anything but I wouldn't be surprised if grandma didn't have something to do with it. So my watermelon plant is producing a fruit and I am satisfied with my sad little vegetable garden. Every thing I planted produced at least 1 thing.

The tomatoes are producing more than I can eat right now. My Beefsteak must be an hierloom yellow beefsteak or something. They are as big as beefsteak but they don't turn red. The Early Girl didn't come early but they sure taste good. And my favorite tomato that I planted this year is (drumroll please)German Johnson. (All my guys here at home are German so we had fun with the jokes this summer.) It is so juicy and yummy I will plant it again next year.

Most of my yard is looking kind of dead with a flower here or there. I've been trimming hedges and fighting a monster grape vine. The stalk was as big as my wrist it went over to the neighbors and grew so I didn't notice it until I found the stalk in the middle of the hedge. It filled up three yard bags and my arm muscles still hurt.

I planted some glads late in the season and didn't really expect anything but they are starting to bloom now. Which is nice because the only thing I have left to bloom is my mum's and it looks like the Hibiscus is going to give me another round of blooms soon. I just planted a Lysimachia ciliata (Firecracker Loostrife) it looks happy for now we shall see next year.

I haven't really been busy outside because I've been busy inside. JR and family have been moved into grandma's room minus most of the dolls. I left the special dolls in there along with some other girly things it's good for him to get in touch with his inner woman. Plus it's fun to hear his friends laughing when they come visit. He just got a job yesterday that doesn't interfere with his school. And JM will start working again in October so they should be doing pretty good by spring.

Right now I'm getting ready for the family reunion/Iowa&Iowa State game. GO HAWKS! All I have to do is wait for this last picture to download. I wonder how much I can write in the time it takes for that picture to load? Probably a lot. Average time is 5 minutes but sometimes it takes longer.

Since I have a cold I'm just taking watermelon, sliced tomatoes and green bean casserole. They wanted beef and noodles and I usually make a pie but I'm too tired. Well I have run out of things to write and the picture is still loading. Maybe it will be done when I get back:)TTFN...

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Nicotiana Posted by Picasa

Morning Surprise:) Posted by Picasa