Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Christmas Break

Christmas is closing in fast and I have decided now would be a good time to shut down for the season. In a few short days my son will be here and I will want to spend my time with him and other members of the family. I'd like to wish each and every one of you a blessed Christmas and a Happy Hanukkah! (Also every other special day in the season)

I am having a giveaway of The Storyteller's Dusty Trunk II. In the U.S. The winner will get the physical book, but if by chance the winner is outside the U.S. of A. - I will email the PDF, which can be read on your computer. If you would like to be in the drawing, let me know in your comment and I will put your name in the hat. I'll have my son pick the winning slip on New Year's Day, before he leaves. I'll put it on my first post of the year and have you send me your address or email, if I don't already have it. This is open to anyone who reads my blog - anywhere.

Have a Merry, Merry, and a Happy, Happy!
From our house to yours!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Busy week ahead

I suppose it goes without saying much about it - I should have thrown the Steam Buggy in the trash today, but that sneaky fellow came before I woke up.

I took this picture of a Downy in my fig before the storm and big freeze Saturday night. You could still see the tiny figs that hadn't matured and the green tips of the new growth buds - I'm pretty sure they are frozen now, it was 14 F this morning. BTW, the bird feeder was totally obliterated during the storm.
 DH bought me some of these truffles - best I've ever had! Too bad there were only 20 of them in that tube. Doubt he will buy more - seeing that I bought 4 different boxes of jellied chocolates for the holidays.
 Progress report on Tom's produce. The fruits are ripening faster now, no matter the size. The lower sun shines directly on them for about 3 hours in the afternoon, I believe that's helping. Will have another sandwich before long!
 I'm anxious for Christmas now - DH ordered me a footed planter to put in front of the window and I've ordered some Tiny Tim cherry tomato seeds. Tom will have to hurry up and finish so I can start my little 'garden' by the window. Ha Ha.

There is one little glitch in all this ordering (Dog treats, dog toys, batteries, computer battery, and garden stuff. Son says not to open anything before Christmas. He has ordered gifts for us from Amazon too! With no way to tell what he sent ... we will have to wait to open anything unless we can devise some sort of plan. So glad that my chocolate jellies came today and I tracked it - was the only thing that came today!

Friday, December 16, 2016

Steam Buggy, part of one anyway ...

Last night, when I should have been going to sleep, I switched on the tube and sat dumbly watching some fool using what looked like a cheap steam cleaner and it looked like it worked. Hmm, I thought, I wonder if it would do a good job on my 'looks like a gas station restroom' bathroom. Then it hit me. I own one of those steam cleaning machines ............... somewhere .........

This afternoon, I tore into the back hall, which serves as our laundry, pantry, and storage space. I did find the old familiar Steam Buggy! I did not, however, find the nozzles or the brushes. I remember having a measuring cup for the water, no sign of that either. Soooo, I spent some time looking for something on the net that might lead me to the company so I might find out about getting new attachments. I couldn't find it. Found some on ebay, but the whole thing, not parts. There are other steam cleaners out there, just not my model. Can't even find a manual on line for it. I didn't think it was that old.

Wonder if it will work at all without attachments?
 I'm too tired out now to even try it out. (Plus I have to restack and repack all the junk I had to move, to get at it.) Hey! I did find my medium sized crock pot - so the day was not lost.

Rain is coming in, then thunderstorms, then when that passes, the temperature is going to drop 40 to 50 degrees with a chance of that wintery stuff. Oh, goody, I can hardly wait.

Last weekend for the shopping, folks. I hope you are all done with your preparations. Poor DH is going to have to get groceries in that awful weather, sigh. That song going through your head yet? You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout, I'm telling you why ...

Monday, December 12, 2016


The big bright three are now history! DH and I couldn't stand it any longer and they were sacrificed for our lunch today. We each got 1 and a half BLT! (Plus extra bacon) Not sure if they were worth all of the expense, as the experiment was quite costly for a few tomatoes, but the experience is one I and most of my friends will not soon forget. The balance of the tomatoes are smaller and seem to be ripening anyway, so I imagine the plant will be out of here by Christmas. 

I have been looking into aqua and hydroponics. Hmm. Interesting ...

Sunday, December 11, 2016

My last book

I got an email from the copyright people a bit ago, seems I had forgotten to include the pictures for one of the short stories I had in it. They wanted to know where and what they were or I would have to start all over with the copyright process. I didn't want to do that - it costs more for a compilation of short stories than for a single story, even if there aren't as many pages. It had been nearly a year - and I had to look them up again. I admit that I am not the most organized person in the world.

I finally have it all done and can relax - nobody can steal my pictures, although I can't for the life of me understand why they would want to. I haven't sold a single copy of The Storyteller's Dusty Trunk II. Nor for that matter the first one, no, I may have sold one of the first one, I don't remember. I gave a bunch of various books away. Sigh.

Thought I would post the pictures from the short story Back to the Land. I'm sure some of you remember my posting a version of the story - way back when.

Summer '83

Me & Nipper Easter '83

Buddy and Rooster Summer 84

J and Gerty summer 84?

My last Christmas there '85, I'd lost Nipper and 20# or more.

Oh, to be that young again!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016


Don't mind me ...

I guess I woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning, or maybe I am just plain worn out from the trip to the doctor. The new doctor is fine, he let me off the hook as far as testing etc goes. Maybe because I told the nurse that this visit was 'it' and I didn't want to come back for games. I don't know. He did order the steroid that I should have been taking ... I have to go back in 3 months (spring) if I'm still around.

Do you ever wake up crabby? I used to when I had hormones ... For some reason I feel as if I am having PMS. Everything is bothering me. Last night my media tower came and I barely had the strength to get it into the house. I thought to have the UPS driver bring it into the back hall, but the dogs were in their 'Hounds of Hell' mode and I didn't feel up to the battle. It's still in the back hall ...

Seems there is a mini disagreement over the value of fruitcake. Hmm, I love fruitcake and I hate fruitcake - or what some companies call that dry, bouncy, bleep they pass off for it. If I had the energy, I would make a batch and ship a loaf to the nay sayers. I read an article that said ladies made fruitcake for gifts to save money. Fruitcake (the real good stuff) is not cheap. It's also dry, because somebody doesn't take the time to wrap and soak their loaves in some fine rum or brandy at least once a week for a month.

My tomatoes seem to be ripening, no matter what their size. I already had one and it was FINE! (As in worth the wait)
I am also, ready for the feast, and then the plant to be out of my room. It simply is taking up too much space. As I said - I'm crabby.

Christmas shopping is at a standstill, after the debacle over the clunky wind chimes. I just can't seem to find anything that isn't a tin of popcorn and call it good enough. I sent one (1) package in the mail (not Christmas) and I am a bit disgusted over the fact that the package took a tour of Texas before they found the place. I am more impressed by UPS and the cost was probably about the same.
I'm sure Jack will appreciate when I get this stuff off the bed!

Waiting for it to be over! 

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Doctor visit

I have a doctor's appointment today. I suppose it's about time, but I do avoid them like a plague. I don't know about you, but I am so tired of "Let's try this," only to have worse side effects than the problems. I am a bit cantankerous anymore when they say that. When my mind goes completely, I imagine I will be the old lady that no one wants to take care of in the nursing home. I'm always cold, I believe it it not just poor circulation, I think it's having cold air pumped into my lungs 24/7. I remember when I worked at the nursing home years ago, one particular old lady stole the toilet tissue from others bathrooms and stuffed it under her covers. She walked around complaining, "I'm cold, I'm cold!" I sure hope I don't end up like that.

Sparrow Hall and extension.
 I took this last week before the leaves finished falling off. If summer had held on a little longer, I would have had some ripe figs. Sigh, that would really have been pushing it. Not sure if you can see the tiny figs on it or not, would have made a nice bowlful. At least Sparrow hall has been rebuilt by nature and the birds have been enjoying it for quite some time. I'm glad I didn't have DH demolish it completely and fill it in. I do enjoy watching the visitors! (Mostly sparrows, house finches, and cardinals)

I need to get my act together - I really hate going ...

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Letter from home - December 2016

Dear Friends and Family,

Where to start? I guess I better just jump in. It's the first of December already. How odd, even with a chill in the air, the days are flying by! Winter is definitely here, judging by the forecast for my area. It's time to check the light bulbs under the house - we don't need any frozen pipes.
 I received my new blanket and it isn't as warm as I expected. Sigh. I'll need additional something by the end of next week. I guess I should have bought a sleeping bag.

DH has been going to the doctors. Multiple. He's had this painful thing going on in his chest and back. It was suggested that he had pleurisy although nothing showed on his x-rays. Separated ribs was the next idea. No treatment. Went to chiropractor, twice, came home more miserable. Next trip, they did a CT scan, which showed a kidney stone and spots on his kidney and a couple spots on his lungs that they figured were nothing to worry about. Then he had an ultrasound on his kidneys - he is supposed to go in in six months to be checked again. He still hurt. By now, he had been having this horrible pain for almost 3 weeks. I noticed some spots like bites on his side, chest and back. It didn't really look like the rash I had when I had the shingles, but I mentioned it to him. Back to the doctor's office. SHINGLES! He got some pills supposedly for shingles. 3 days later, (yesterday) he went to a different doctor in a different town. Yep, shingles! He now has some ointment and pain pills. He is some better today. Seems some people don't break out as bad as others and the pain is more inside than out. Doctors! I just don't trust them.

I tried doing a little Christmas shopping online. I thought I found the perfect gift for my SILs at Teleflora and when I was filling out the information, the site had me check the dates - seems as I was ordering - they ran out! I can kinda tell that shopping isn't going to be a picnic. Good thing I started early. Now, to think up something else.

Either my puny tomatoes are ripening or rottening.
 I was surprised when I looked at the 'trimmings' from a couple of weeks ago. I had stuck them into a bottle of water with idiotic thoughts of sticking them into another pot of dirt. 
 Yes, there are five tiny tomatoes growing, I was sure the blossoms would be shocked from the cutting and fall off. Tough tomato plants!

As some of you know, my printer gave me grief over the new ink and refuses to print with it. My little dream of actually making and sending out a few Christmas cards, went down the drain. I have yet to get a different printer. DH bought me a few cards to send out and I sat on the bed making them out while watching the newest DVD of Poldark

Yes, the last Poldark for the season was broadcast. No more Call the Midwife for now. Jewel in the Crown finished, as well as Indian Summers and The Durrels of Corfu. Sigh ... I checked December programming - it isn't my kind of stuff. January looks promising.

I am getting excited about Christmas - because our youngest son will be flying in for the holidays! I hope I don't go overboard and get sick. I normally don't 'Do' Christmas, but with him coming and how bad I've missed him, well, I just can't help myself! I may even do up my little trees. I have no idea what to get him, or his dad for that matter, so I search the internet in hopes I can spot the perfect gifts.

All for now, sorry this is so long. Have a great day!