Thursday, March 23, 2017

Time 'March's' On!

      And how it does fly! I'm so happy to be sitting here today, sharing with ya'll! There's a lot of growing and planting going on here at the homestead! I like to call it a homestead because to me, that's what it is. I know we don't have 50 or so acres. We don't have a barn, pigs, or cows. But we do have chickens, goats, and a nice garden. We also have an orchard with apple trees, pear trees, plum, fig, and cherry trees. Oh, and of course the grapes and blackberries! I love canning and preserving things I grow. I love cooking from scratch! I love learning how to utilize what we've got instead of spending money. Of course, I like to buy things that make our jobs here on the homestead easier. Such as the 2 wheeled wheel barrow. It was worth spending extra money for a wheel barrow I don't have to try and balance while moving to the desired location. And the list goes on.

      Recently, while watching a YouTube video, I was connected to a new friend. It all started because I've been trying to find Vardaman sweet potatoes. Gurney's doesn't ship them to Alabama, so I was on a mission to find some. Long story short, I was connected to a lady who lives in Mississippi, not too far from Vardaman. She graciously offered to send me some Vardaman sweet potatoes. So I sent her some day lilies. Ya'll know I've got a few of those! The sweet potatoes came in yesterday, and I'm planting them today. One, I'm leaving in water to see how it does. Danny, from Deep South Homestead, saves his smaller sweet potatoes from the harvest, and plants the whole potato in the ground. From there, he lets the slips grow 6-8 inches. Then, he takes the slips and plants them in the field. That's what I want to do. Except I don't have a field. Just a garden. But that's O.K.

      I just came inside from planting those sweet potatoes and it has gotten hot out there! I heard a loud truck close by after I had about 4 holes dug and looked up to see what it was. There was a fire truck, a rescue truck, and a tractor sitting in the road! It was down the hill from my house, but not too far. A tree decided to fall this very windy day and take the power line with it. My friend and I had just passed that way walking about 30 minutes before it happened. I had noticed the tree only yesterday when we walked passed, that it looked dead and I thought one day it would fall. But today? Yes, and I'm glad it's down. Now I can walk by safely without wondering. Thank goodness we are not on the same line! Our power is still on but that side won't be on for some time.

      I always think I will write a post sooner than I do. I'm just glad to get one written once a month! I will try to do better. Thanks for reading and commenting! Blessings from Bama!

I still enjoy drinking the green juice made in my Vitamix!

My 2 wheel, wheel barrow sure is handy in moving this mulch!

What I do with extra eggs? Pickle them!

Plants grown from seeds under grow lights. I am in the process of re-potting them.

These just need to grow more before going into the garden. Plan on getting them in the garden no later than April 15.

We had a pair of guineas. This is all that's left of him. Ms. guinea is still here, thank goodness!

I planted asparagus in this bed. A leftover kale plant also.
Red Norland potatoes coming up.
Kale and onions.

Ms. guinea always stays close to the chicks. But she like to peck at them.

These are Welsummers and Aracaunas.

I think this is a female. Here's hoping!
The green leaves are rutabagas. Further down by the fence and blue cover I planted kale, onions, and the sweet potatoes.

Just had to throw in a pic of Gavyn being silly!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Flowers in February!I

      Wow! What a winter! Or should I say Spring? One can hardly tell these days! One day its cold, windy, cloudy, rainy. The next day it's warm, sunny and 70! So many fluctuations in a week! Thus, the reason we have flowers blooming outside! Daffodils, shrubs, fruit trees, tulip trees, and so on. In town, there are a lot more blossoms. Out here, not as many. Things seem to bloom much later here on the homestead than in town. I'm not sure why.

      I've been battling sickness for almost two weeks! It's getting old! I don't want to go to the doctor for fear of catching more disease! I think I got this germ when I went to the emergency room to see my Dad. He was having severe pain in his side. It's not like my Dad to go to the emergency room! I don't think he's ever been! So I know he was hurting! They didn't find out what was wrong with him, of course. Our local hospital is not always the most efficient when diagnosing patients. It took my Mom's persistence in calling doctors to get him checked. Finally, a surgeon diagnosed him right away with a hernia! Now what was so hard to determine that? He will be having surgery in early March to have it removed. But I had to go and contact this crud! It has been nasty! I want so bad to be OVER it! I also had the privilege of caring for Riley and Gavyn last week. They are so sweet! I wished I  hadn't been sick while I was caring for them! But they were so good! I miss those little buggers!

      I want so bad to have a good garden this year! I ordered seeds from Baker Creek, Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, and Marie Seeds. These are mostly heirloom seeds that seeds can be saved from. Plus, varieties that can't be purchased at the local farm store or big box store. I also purchased seeds from them. The ones I planted last week have germinated! All but the pepper plants. The temp needs to be warmer for them. I am so excited to see the plants popping up! Now, to get the trailer of woodchips unloaded! I'm not up to that! I'm doing good to do a few things inside. I don't like resting! I want to be doing! Oh well, got to rest to get over this, I guess.

      I hope ya'll stay warm and well! And don't forget to get those seeds started! Have a great week! Blessings from Bama!

Feel better soon Dad!

My one and only daffodil.

Green juice drinkers!

One flower I lacked on the homestead was our state flower, the Camelia. Now I have one! It is the most beautiful flower I have ever seen! Thank you Randy, for my Valentine gift!

You can't see them, but the tea olive tree has little fragrant flowers all over it! Wished I could smell them!

Sprouted seeds!

Just planted.

A plum tree in bloom!
The other part of my Valentine's gift, eight raspberry plants! Thanks Randy!

The trailer that needs emptying. We will need about eight more loads to cover the garden.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

The Crazy Weather!

      I can only say wow! The first part of January was typical: cold and windy. Now, it's raining and warm! Especially the last couple of weeks. Very warm! The trees and shrubs are even starting to bud! I know winter isn't over. I'm concerned for the trees and shrubs! But I have no control over this. Only our Creator does. He knows what He's doing, so I trust Him even though I don't understand.

      I have been inspired by the Back to Eden way of gardening again. I've always wanted my garden to be that way. We found a place that we could get wood chips, but we have to drive a trailer and scoop them ourselves. We had such a long, hot, humid summer that we couldn't possibly do that. At least I wouldn't. Then came the cooler weather along right with the holidays and shorter days. Finally, yesterday we had the opportunity to go there with the trailer and fill it. The weather was pleasant: close to 70. Boy did we sweat! But we got 'her done'! Today has been raining all day. I'm not sure about tomorrow, but just as soon as I can, I will be unloading wood chips. Yay! Finally! They won't go far. And I don't know when I'll get anymore, so I'm happy for now.

      I'm patiently awaiting seed catalogs to come in the mail. I want to order things from Baker Creek and Southern Seed Exposure. I sure do hope they come in soon! I need to get the tomatoes started! I hope I have a better time starting from seed than I have in the past. The shelf and grow light are set up in the garage in a warm spot. I think that will work nicely.

      I hope to get back with ya'll later in the week. I'm embarrassed to do it, but I'm going to link to a video I've done. I don't think it worked! If you have any advice for adding videos, please let me know. Enjoy the blog and thanks for commenting! Blessings from Bama!

We actually got some snow!

Just barely enough to cover the trampoline.

This will probably be it for this year.
Ya'll need to add this to your winter arsenal for staying well. Works for us!
A cute wreath I made. It's for sale.
I'm almost through with this wreath. Just need to add the bow. It will be for sale too.

Here is a video of me.
And this is the second part.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

A New Year's a Coming!

      I just thought I'd pop in and say hello! I have not written in awhile because of so many things going on. But now that the new year is embarking upon us, I feel like I need to get back to blogging. Funny how I have pushed it to the back burner. I really enjoy sharing my life with ya'll! I've even been contemplating Youtubing! If that is a word. I'm not sure about that yet. I'll let ya'll know.

      The holidays have been nice. But we lost a dear loved one. My husband's father. He was 75, and died with lung cancer. He battled it for a long time. He smoked all of his life, but quit about 15 years ago. That wasn't enough. The damage had been done. We will miss you, H.L.!

      Since the drought has ended, although we're tremendously still in need of rain, the weather has turned cooler. It was quite cold the last couple of weeks, but this week has been quite warm! I wore shorts and raked leaves Saturday, which was Christmas Eve! Air conditioners were on Christmas Day, for awhile! We do have odd weather here in the South. I never really get used to it cause it's always changing! The heat this year, though! I still can't believe how hot and dry the past few months have been! But I'm ready to start gardening again! I lost total interest in the garden during the drought and heat! The cooler temps have gotten me outside and digging again! I turned up some large sweet potatoes in the garden today. One looks like some sort of animal fetus or something! It's huge! I probably won't do anything with it because it will be so hard to cut. The others are in my pantry, curing. I hope they will be edible. Time will tell!

      Speaking of the garden, I really hope to get wood chips brought in soon. I know where a pile is that is in the decomposing process. We can get it any time. There just hasn't been time! Randy has been re-doing our heat. We had a power surge in this area and it demolished our downstairs unit! Randy has been wanting to switch back to a heat pump, so that's what he works on in the evening. We're running strip heat, which makes the power bill very high, but at least we have heat when we need it. 

      I pray that ya'll will have a wonderful holiday season and a safe and prosperous New Year! Thanks for reading and commenting! Blessings from Bama!

One load of the many I raked Saturday!

My new 'Christmas shoes'! I just need to wear socks next time. Got a blister!

The tree has some of my homemade ornaments.

Our lovely 2016 Christmas tree!

Gold and silver wreath I made. The bow is on a  wreath on the other side of the door.

Another wreath I made.

A nice set of two from my sister-in-law.

The silly goats kept jumping into the wheel barrow while I tried to scoop their poop!

Santa brought a trampoline for the girls! I love it! It is the best baby sitter!

My sweet potatoes! I'm going to dig and see if there are more.

My new profile pic.

Sherry and Gavyn.

Three of my sweeties!

Smoky Mountains.

I love this man!

Smoke on the mountain!

I love the mountains, even if I got vertigo driving around in them!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Hey Ya'll! Happy Fall!

      In my area, it's late summer! As I write this, it is 91 degrees! Yikes! No wonder I'm in the house! We have been enjoying much milder temperatures the past couple of weeks, with the highs only in the eighties. And low humidity! It really felt nice! Then all of a sudden, the thermometer started rising again, as well as the humidity! I am so, not happy! I was actually able to go outside and enjoy being there! I can't work the ground because of the drought, but I can do other things like paint projects in the shade. Oh did I mention we're having a drought? It has been so dry! No rain since early September and that was only a slight drizzle! The ground is so hard! I won't even think about a fall garden! Or plant mums! What I've got will have to do. At least the leaves are finally turning pretty colors! I was afraid they would all dry up and fall off! The leaves on the trees I shared in the last post did fall off. Those trees are bare now. I hope your weather is better where you are!

      October is birthday month for our family. My baby turned 21 Saturday! I can't believe it! It just seems like we brought him home yesterday! Where does the time go? He's a hard working young man. He is training and learning how to be an air/heat tech. He seems to be excelling in his work, from what I hear. He also loves to do mechanic work on cars and trucks. He gets all that from his dad, who does the same. Happy Birthday, Skylar! 

      April and Amber also has a birthday this month. They are the Moms of all those beautiful little girls who spend time here. Happy Birthday Amber and April! Randy's Mom also had a birthday this month. Happy Birthday Helen! Michael, Randy's brother had a birthday this month. Happy Birthday, Michael! I'm sorry if I left anyone out. Happy Birthday just in case!

      I am enjoying learning more about my Cricut. It is an amazing machine! It is helping with my card making endeavors. I believe it will help me with much more than that in the long run! I am embarking on a new craft that I hope the Cricut will help me with. I haven't gotten started actually making anything, just buying up the items I need. I hope to have some things made to share with ya'll soon. 

       Ya'll enjoy your mild temperatures and the amazing color God has blessed us with this Fall! Blessings from Bama!

My brother, Cliff, is sitting in Sandy's chair. She's such a big pet!

The mums are getting taken over by a climbing black-eyed Susan.

I love the color of this mum!

I made this simple wreath.

I just wanted to show ya'll the beautiful ferns at the front door.

Too bad this isn't smell-a-blog! The rose smell is outstanding in aroma!

If I wasn't watering these flowers, they would be dead by now!

The beautiful and awesome smelling gardenia!

The dog wood trees are so beautiful this time of year!

More fall color.

Wrong time of day to see the beautiful colors! But they are beautiful!

I absolutely love this spraggling rose bush! It smells good too!

Little Riley gluing and coloring!

This handsome fellow is Gavyn!

Pretty Winterlynn and her great coloring!

I made the kids plaques with their names. Each one was different. I don't know what happened to the pictures of the others.