Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Work, work, work,,,,,,,


Work, work, work, I am enjoying my yard work.  It has been so nice to see a few days of sunshine even if it is really hot and humid.  I have been getting yard work done early of a morning the last few days.  I still have some more pruning to do today but the yard is finally taking shape and looking like it should.

We are suppose to get more rain later today and of course be hot and humid again too.  So, right after I hit the send button on this post I am going out to get some more pruning done.  Not much left to do and I want to finish it up.  I was actually weed trimming and mowing the lawn after dark last night, LOL.  I had also trimmed and pruned yesterday morning before it got too hot.

I have about an hours worth of pruning yet to do this morning.  Then I will come in and take a nap before making salads and doing laundry.  I am hurting from yesterday but am determined to get done all that I have planned.

Tomorrow morning I hope to get the rest of the garden planted.  I still have corn, beans, beets and cucumbers for pickling to get in.  The tomatoes and potatoes are looking awesome except for the potatoes that rose up to the surface with all the hard rain.  They need to be poked back in the dirt a bit and then covered up with some hay or straw.  My friend Tom is going to get me a bale or two from the pig farmer that he works for part time.

Tomorrow I will be getting things ready for bible study Thursday night as I am preparing the refreshments for it.  I want to make a cheese ball and it is better if it sits a day to meld in all the flavors of the seasonings I use.  This certainly is the time of year that I am busiest, but I do love it.

Well, I am off to get my work outside done.  The temperature is already rising and the humidity is climbing.

Until next time,,,,,,,,,Blessings!!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Memorial Day!!


Already have part of my yard work for the day done.  The battery ran out on my weed eater so I am in for a little break while it is on the charger.  Having a cup of coffee then grabbing the pruners and heading back out again.  It is already hot and humid here so I want to get the bulk of the work done before the worse heat hits.

When I was a child Memorial Day was for EVERYONE who had passed on before us.  We remembered everyone that we loved who passed, many we did not know personally but had an impact on our lives and of course the veterans who were lost.

We went to the cemetery in Eldred, NY where my mom was raised and my grandparents along with many other ancestors were buried.  The cemetery was suppose to have perpetual care but that had stopped many years before I was born.  So we packed a picnic lunch and spent the day cleaning up the cemetery and placed flowers on graves.

My grandparents, great-grandparents and even great-great grandparents on my mother's side are buried in that cemetery.  My mother is buried in the "newer" one across the road.  Many aunts, uncles, great and great great aunts and uncles are also buried in the older cemetery.

We also put flags on the graves of any we knew were soldiers whether they served in war time or not.

This is an old cemetery that dates back to colonial days, pre-revolution.  It can get kind of spooky when you are a kid, LOL.  It sits out in the country on a hillside surrounded by woods.  The further back you walk the further up the hill you go.  The sounds from the woods adds to the mystic of the cemetery, especially when you are a kid, LOL.

We used an old reel mower to cut the grass and an old hand trimmer to clean up the edges.  No such thing as gas, electric or battery operated trimmers back then.  (Yes, I am old, LOL)  It was an all day job.  About half way through we would break for lunch.  There was a picnic area down by the road.  It was quiet and peaceful there.  There was a place down the road a piece to get natural mountain spring water.  We would usually stop there on the way to the cemetery and fill up several gallon jars.  The water was nice and cold and a welcome treat on hot days.

I never knew my grandparents as they had passed long before I was born.  But I had a step-grandfather who was a wonderful man.  When he passed in 1977 his nephew had him cremated and I had the honors of burying his ashes in this cemetery.  I do not know of many who were buried there after that year.  The newer side was already in use.  I imagine there were some that were added to already existing family plots but not many.

I remember as a small child I would walk around talking to them as I worked, as if they were all just sitting there and listening to me, LOL.  Maybe I was a little crazy, but somehow it made the work easier and made me feel closer to them.

Today, Memorial Day is more about celebrating an extra day off and cook outs.  We seems to have lost the true meaning of the holiday.  Then again we seem to have lost a lot in this country.  Our high standards, morals, and even thoughtfulness of others.

My wish for today is that you take time to really remember those folks who have gone on before us.  What impact did they have on your life?  What impact did they have on our country.  Think about how our country was started, where its been in this world and where it is headed.  If you are old enough, think about days gone by where neighbors really knew each other, cared about each other and helped each other in time of need.  Think about the principles this country was founded on.  We sure need to get some of those principles back, but it starts with you and me.  We can not change a government if we are not willing to change ourselves.

May you have a happy and safe holiday!!

Until next time,,,,,,,Blessings!!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

In everyone's life a little rain must fall,,,,,,,,


You know the old saying, "In every one's life a little rain must fall" ???    I agree with that statement but they didn't tell me it was going to pour down buckets, LOL.  Enough already!!

We are in for more rain again today.  I looked out at my garden and am going to have to do some repair work from the last storms.  The tomatoes made it through OK but the potatoes have actually floated to the surface from all that rain, hard rain.  The garden had flooded and the water stood for quite a while before draining down.

That tells me a couple of things, one it rained very hard for quite a while and two, that soil was not tilled enough or deep enough as it did not drain down very well or quickly.  The weather report tells me that after today it is suppose to be dry and very hot for a few days.  So I will be getting out in the garden early in the mornings before the worse heat of the day and getting some much needed work done.  My computer schedule time will have to be altered and I will probably be posting in the afternoons or early evenings instead of first thing in the morning.  But that's no biggy.  Just wanted to give you early birds a heads up.

Sometimes the rain coming down in our lives are things that are happening that are just not pleasant.  That seems to happen in my life all the time.  I need some sunshine in my life for a change.  Seems there is always some sort of trouble brewing, personally, I wish it would stop.  I just want a quiet and peaceful existence.  Life can be hard enough without others adding problems.  Perhaps I feel this way because of my PTSD, but I am getting to the point I really don't like people around me.

Maybe that is why I like my Internet friends so much.  Its nice to chat online but then you go live your life and I live mine.  Its safe.  If someone ticks you off you just click them out of your life.  You have more control over what you will tolerate and what you won't and its not messy or a hassle to just click and poof they are gone.  Does anyone else feel like this from time to time??

Until next time,,,,,,,,,Blessings!!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Onward and upward,,,,,,


I have been thinking about things I could do to make my ceramics page a bit more interesting and I have decided that in the near future I am going to make a video of glazing ceramics.  Perhaps seeing the steps that goes into making ceramics, especially the glazing part might be of interest.

I do all the glazing by hand.  I do not use a machine or an air brush.  Some folks might think it is boring but I love what I do.  And I especially love how the pieces come out when they are completely glazed and fired for the final time.

I will be back in my shop full time soon I can't wait!!  I will also be pouring molds again hopefully by July if all goes well.  I can do a video on that too.  I have a lot of wonderful plans for the business this summer so watch here for announcements and some special sales!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,Blessings!!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Determined or stubborn, one is good the other can be bad,,,,,,


I have discovered there is a real difference between being determined and being stubborn.  If I am determined to see a project that I started through that is a positive thing.  For example, I have started my garden and I am determined to finish planting and tending the garden through the year to reap the rewards of the fresh produce.  That is a good thing.

If a person needs help and is too stubborn to ask for it and appreciate it when he gets it, that could be a bad thing.  At some point they are going to find themselves alone and with no one to help them when they need it.  If a person loves someone but is too stubborn to admit it, the relationship will eventually fall apart and that stubborn person will be left alone and wondering what happened.

I have been both stubborn and determined at various times in my life.  But from my new perspective being stubborn gets you no where in a hurry and only brings about negativity in one's life.  I have decided to be more determined in the things I need to accomplish in life.  I am also determined to remain a person of integrity and dignity no matter what others might throw my way.  I have only myself and God to answer to.  And I am determined to keep my self respect even in the worse of situations.

I have seen in my own life and in the lives of others that being stubborn can wind up costing many things and all to often the stubborn one is not even aware of it until it is too late.  Will your stubbornness cost you everything you value??

Until next time,,,,,,,Blessings!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Illinois Medicaid and fibromyalgia,,,,,


Recently I was told that Illinois Medicaid in their so call infinite wisdom has decided to stop paying for the prescription Lyrica used to treat fibromyalgia.  In my case I am not on medicaid as they decided to stop allowing any new fibromyalgia patients to get medicaid as it was "too expensive an illness for them to pay for."  However those that were on medicaid prior to this decision were allowed to stay on it.  Now it seems you can be on medicaid with fibromyalgia but we are not going to pay for your medicine!

I personally can not take Lyrica.  It stops my metabolism and I have horrible weight gain.  In just a few months I had more than doubled my weight.  That is the unusual case but it does happen.  But I am concerned for those who can take it and now the state wants to stop paying for it.  Lyrica is not a cheap medication.  If one is on medicaid they already have low finances or they would not be able to get it, along with the fact they are disabled and can not work.

So, in this state's infinite wisdom they are going to take away their only chance of living a life with less pain.  Perhaps one that would help them eventually be able to work again.  How smart is that?  I wish some of these folks in the government would have to live with the pain of fibromyalgia for just one week without any medications.  Perhaps that would change their minds.  But of course that won't happen.  I realize this state has huge financial problems but they want to cut all the wrong programs.  And they want to spend money in all the wrong places.

Today I happen to have a doctor's appointment to try to find some sort of pain medication that will help me to just be able to continue to put one foot in front of the other.  But it has to be a medication I can afford because I have no income and have not been able to work in 11 years.  I have no medicaid or financial assistance.  This is one of the reasons I am trying to make some money making and selling ceramics.  Working for myself is my only hope of making a living.  I can pace myself and when my pain is too high to do anything I can lay down.  Try telling an employer, "sorry, I can't do the work you want me to right now, I am in too much pain".  That won't last long before you are handed your walking papers.  Most won't even higher you in the first place if they know you have fibromyalgia.  Believe me, I know, been there, done that, could write a book about it.

Our state also wants to cut funding for mental health.  That means many people will not get the help they need, will have no chance of getting back on their feet and will more than likely get worse.  And they wonder why people go postal!!  The "haves" have more and the "have nots",,,, well they have even less.  Good going  government, and I do mean every level of government from local, to state, right on up the federal ladder.  Perhaps its time for us "have nots" to start taking a bit of what you have!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,,Blessings!

Monday, May 23, 2011

The storms came rolling through,,,,


We had some very strong winds, thunder, lightening and even tornado watches and warnings last night.  Luckily in my neck of the woods there was no severe damage or loss of life.  My prayers go out to those in Joplin, MO who were hit very hard.  The report this morning was 89 lives lost and still counting.  They were hit by the same storms that rolled through here later.

When last checked we will get more of the same tonight.  I sure hope not!!  Folks that were born and raised here say we have been very lucky and are over due for a big tornado to hit us.  Praying this is not the year or the night that will happen!

Last night was a wild enough ride for me in my old age.  I watched the skies and knew there would be tornado warnings long before the sirens went off alerting us to impending danger.  Luckily the tornadoes missed us.

This is a common occurrence in the spring here in Central Illinois.  So common we become complacent and don't really heed the warnings.  I am just as guilty.  I sat here on my computer while the storms were rolling through, not giving them too much thought but also wondering if this would be the time they would hit.  Not much I could do to stop them I reasoned with myself so why worry?  Making myself a note that I should pay a little more attention and perhaps heed the warnings more than what I have been.

Long gone are the days that I used to go out and chase these storms.  I used to be a volunteer weather spotter for ESDA.  I have had a car plummeted with large hail leaving dents, millions of dents in the car.  I have had a car lifted up off the ground by a couple of feet and dropped back down again.  All the while I am calling my report into ESDA and snapping pictures.  Oh to be that young and foolish again, LOL.

Actually, I had enjoyed volunteering.  But times have changed.  I have grown older.  My health is deteriorating and I just don't have the energy to do it any more.  I am only 52 but with my health I feel like an old lady most of the time.  I guess it is time for me to rest and let the younger generation take it over.

Again, my prayers go out to those in Joplin, MO.

Until next time,,,,,,Blessings!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

A little bit of dis and dat,,,,,


Its Saturday morning and it doesn't look like the world came to an end unless maybe I was left behind?  Nope, I don't think so,,,, it just didn't happen and Mr. Camping was proven wrong once again.  Shame on him for thinking he knows more than what the Lord does!!

The garden is tilled and we did not get much rain last night.  They are calling for more rain today and I see some on the radar but it does not look like it will amount to much either.  I might be able to start planting later today.  That makes me a very happy gardener, LOL.

I have other chores to do first before I can get started.  Laundry being the first thing this morning.  And I really need to run the vacuum and get garbage out, both are a bit over due, especially the vacuuming.  Rusty is shedding his winter coat and there is fur every where!  I try to keep most of it outside by picking the loose stuff out every time I take him out or bring him in.  That has helped a lot and the birds love the fur for their nests.

The city showed up to mow the yard at the house to the south of me that I have told you about.  They did one swipe through the yard, rain over a garden hose and messed up the cutting blade on the bush hogger and had to take it back to the shop.  I had warned them when I called there was a lot of junk in the yard and they needed to walk through it first so they would not run over anything but I guess the word never made it to the guy doing the mowing and his common sense did not kick in and think to check it.  Who knows when he will be back now?

I think I will head out to the porch to finish my coffee before I start getting busy for the day.  Hope you all have a wonderful day!!

Until next time,,,,,,Blessings!!

Friday, May 20, 2011

I wish I could get my garden tilled,,,,,


Yesterday afternoon we tried to get in the garden to till but it is still too wet.  My friend Tom came over late in the afternoon but we checked the ground out before lugging out my little mantis tiller and it was still to wet.  That would have clogged my tiller up big time.  And that would have been bad.

We are going to try for this afternoon.  The rain is suppose to come rolling back in tonight after midnight and rain for several days.  If we don't get it tilled today it will be well over a week before we can try again.  It is getting so late in the season to get a garden going.  But I have tomato plants on the porch waiting to get in the ground.  I have potato and onion starts waiting also and a bunch of various seeds.

Some people managed to get their gardens in early only to have them flooded out.  Many are like me and still trying to get in to till and plant.  Oh how I pray I can get it tilled today and at least get the tomatoes, potatoes and onions in.  I might wait on seeds as I do not want them rotted in too much rain.

With the cost of living, especially the cost of food going up and up a garden is a necessity to help stretch the food budget.  I also want to try to put back as much food as possible to help us get through the winter when higher utility bills drain money from the food budget.  Its hard living on a fixed income and making ends meet.  The cost of living keeps rising but the income does not.

Unlike most people who want to blame the economy on the current president I will not.  This has been going on for decades and getting worse with each passing year.  Depending on your income level will determine when you first started feeling the pinch in the pocketbook.  Those on fixed incomes felt it from the beginning.  We have learned how to stretch a dollar or just do without.  Now that more people are feeling it they want to say it just started happening.  Not true!!  You just started waking up to what has been going on for a long time!!

No matter who holds the office of president or which party is in control it will continue to get worse.  Everyone must be prepared and do the best they can to survive.  If you don't know how to "put up" food for the rough times I suggest you learn.  I taught myself how to can by using the "Ball Blue Book of Canning".  The step by step instructions are very clear and easy to follow and the recipes in the book will help a great deal.  Buy a little extra non-perishables at the store whenever you can and put them back.  Someday you will need them and be happy you have them.

Until next time,,,,,, Blessings!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Will this be the end of the world???


In the news the last few days is Harold Camping's predictions of the end of the world.  According to him it is suppose to start this Friday night.  I have one question for Mr. Camping,,  "what makes you think you are better than Jesus"?

In the bible when Jesus is talking about the end times he says that no one knows when he will return but only the Father knows.  Jesus says, he does not even know.  So how come Mr. Camping thinks he knows something more than our Lord and Savior does?

The bible does give us signs to watch for that will show the end times are near.  But no one knows the exact day or hour.  I believe by these signs, the end times could be near, but not necessarily Friday night.  We are to go on about our business but keep a watchful eye.  The bible says we are to be prepared but that does not mean, stop what you are doing and pack your bags type of prepared.  Be prepared in your heart, know that you are right with the Lord.  Have your salvation!!

Will I stop my plans for this weekend just in case Mr. Camping is right?  Absolutely NOT!!  I still plan to get my garden tilled and planted before Friday evening if the weather co-operates.  I am still going to bake today for bible study tonight.  And I will still plan on being in worship services on Sunday morning.  I still plan to continue working on my business and taking care of my home.  Life will not stop for me.  I will not sit and stare at the sky based on the predictions of another human being.  I know what the bible says!!

If Mr. Camping's predictions should be right, wonderful! I am ready to meet my Lord and Savior.  But I have a strong feeling an awful lot of people are going to be very disappointed when it does not happen this Friday night.  People who have followed Mr. Camping blindly without verifying what the bible actually says.

The bible tells us to beware of false prophets and teachers.  Not all false prophets and teachers mislead us intentionally, some are mislead themselves and without verifying they take what they are told as the truth.  We must always remember to verify everything we are told with the bible.  The bible IS God's word.  It is the truth.  Always check what you are told with what the bible says.  Even if it is a well loved and trusted Pastor.  After all, they are human and can make mistakes too.

Some do mislead intentionally, but I won't go there today.  I can save that topic for another day.  But the bottom line is always do your own checking.  Keep your face in your bible every day and do not let someone mislead or fool you, whether intentional or not.  You are the only one who is responsible for your own salvation and your own walk with the Lord.  It is up to you to seek first the Kingdom of God.

Until next time,,,,,,,Blessings!!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

On the fly,,,,,,,


I am on the fly today.  I managed to get the garden uncovered and cleaned up a bit and am hoping to get some tilling and planting in before the weekend.  But there is a possibility of rain in the forecast for later today so that might throw a monkey wrench into the plans.

I have to pay bills and run to the grocery store this morning first thing.  Then back to try to get as much yard and garden work in as I can before the rain.

I wrenched my back a couple of days ago so moving is very slow.  Any movement or bending sends horrific pain shooting through my back and down my legs.  Ouch!!  I had bought groceries for Frank and I but now need to go back and get pet food for Rusty and Faxon.  I have learned to split up the shopping because it is just too much for me to lug into the house at one time.  Didn't matter, still hurt the back anyway.  Ugh!

The back yard needs mowing today too.  I did the front yard the other day.  I now split that job up as well.  But yesterday I worked out a deal with my landlord, such a wonderful man,  I am going to use his riding mower and will take care of the yard here and the yard at his house next door.  That saves us both a lot of work.  He is remodeling the house next door and will not have to take time from that to keep the lawn up.  And I will no longer have to use a push mower.  Better yet, I won't have to lug the mower back and forth between Win's house and mine as we have been sharing one mower.  Praise the Lord for opening this door and making things a little easier!!  I am blessed indeed!!

I need to make a couple of phone calls then head out the door to get these errands done.  Have a great day!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,,,Blessings!!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011



Is your relationship with your significant other a loving relationship or a business relationship?  What would you do or think if you found out that while you thought you were in a loving relationship your significant other viewed it as a business relationship?  How would you feel if that person viewed everything in dollars and not love?  And what if your significant other felt the things you did such as cooking, laundry, cleaning, shopping, mowing the lawn or shoveling snow, etc. had no value?

Lets say there was no "business agreement" made prior to the beginning of the relationship or at the beginning of it.  Your partner tells you he or she loves you.  You are developing what at least seems like a loving relationship but then wham, one day you are told you are of no value.  Nothing you do holds any value.  They are getting no return on their money.

How would you feel?  What would you do?  Would it hurt your relationship with that person?  Would it destroy your trust?  Your love?  Could you ever feel the same way about that person again?  They say there is a very fine line between love and hate, would you hate that person for degrading you in such a way?

Then again I even wonder, would the person understand they were degrading you?  Would they even understand that is a form of domestic violence?  Are they so self centered and self absorbed that they even consider you have feelings?  I also wonder if a person who treats another like that is even capable of loving someone?  Do they just love themselves?  Or are maybe they so insecure they have to put someone else down to make themselves feel better?

Degrading another is a need to control and controlling is a form of domestic violence.  As a past victim of domestic violence I know all these signs too well.  I have been through them.  My self esteem and self worth was stripped away from me little by little until I was just an empty shell going through the motions.  For me, I will never let that happen again.  But too often we fall into a pattern and it happens over and over again.  Its time to break that pattern and start a better life.  I know you can do it!!

Until next time,,,,,,, Blessings

Monday, May 16, 2011

Getting very frustrated,,,,,,,,


Last year some of you might recall me posting pictures of the house to the south of me where the lady had groundhogs and kept them as pets by feeding them.  The groundhogs had babies, 2 of which my dog killed when they wandered into my yard.  There was also a huge problem with garbage and grass getting way too high after she abandoned the place.

Well, the grass in the back is up to almost 3 feet this year.  Groundhogs are numerous, I have counted at least 5 different ones thus far.  This is not a healthy situation.  I have made several phone calls to the maintenance company whose sign and number are posted on the house and also to the city.  Nothing is being done and the situation is just getting worse.

Twice someone has shown up to mow the grass but then decided it was too high and left without mowing.  I have been told the animal control officer can not trap wild animals.  What the heck do we have her for then?

Last year I got a permit to trap them myself, on my property only.  OK, well then the groundhogs seemed to have disappeared.  She had them hid in her basement!!!  Besides that someone stole my live animal trap right from my yard!!  I can not afford to buy another one nor do I feel I should have to.  This is a city and county problem defined by their own ordinances, yet they do nothing!!

Today I will make phone calls again.  If there are no positive results by Wednesday I will post photos all over the net.  That seemed to be what got some results last year.  I don't know our new Mayor but she is going to get an earful today.  Like it or not!!

If things should dry out here, there will be a risk of a major grass fire as high as it is and I imagine it would take out the houses on both sides of the property.  At the very least do some damage to them.

Why is it that some folks ignore the ordinances and seem to get away with it but others miss mowing their lawns one week and they get a ticket with a hefty fine?  According to the lady who is in charge of enforcing these ordinances they have already been warned twice.  The longer this goes on the harder it will be to get that lawn mowed.  I also told her about the groundhogs and she told me to trap them.  Sorry, that is not my job, I suggest you get animal control in there to trap them.

Ugh, I am so losing my patience and am getting very frustrated!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,Blessings!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Finally got some sleep,,,,


Last night I finally got some sleep!!  Before going to bed I took 3 muscle relaxers.  I never take that many at one time but I was desperate.  I slept hard but my body still wants and needs more.  I am heading for a nap after I finish this post and get Rusty back in.  Its a rainy day so there will be no working in the garden today.

I only know of Faxon climbing on me and licking my face once last night.  I was barely awake.  I pushed him off me and without missing a beat was back fast asleep.  I stayed in bed till 7:30am very late for me.  But I still feel very tired.  It is a good day to rest.  If he climbed on me other times it did not wake me up.

I'm still half asleep and can't really concentrate so, I am just going to finish this up and go get Rusty in and nap.  Hope you all have a good day!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,,,Blessings!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Could it be ???


Sorry for the delay in the post, blogger has been down for a while.

Yesterday I went to a meeting, lecture, seminar,,, not sure what they called it.  But it is designed to help people get back to work.  They also said they have programs through the state, Department of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) to help folks like me start a business.  Even with funding.  Could it be?  Could it really be?  I have banged my head against the wall for a long time trying to find the funding I need to really get my ceramics business going again.

I had spoke to someone from DRS a year ago about funding for a business with no results.  I had been told that I need to "go get a regular job" first.  Why?  This is what I want to do and I am good at it!!  I really hope things have changed.  I want to be able to get this business off the ground and make a living.  I have the knowledge and the ability, but I don't have the finances.  I even have a lot of the equipment and only need a few supplies.

I worked on my web site this morning and got a pretty good amount done but there is still much work to do.  http://aber-ceramics.com  Check it out!!  I hope to keep working on it over the weekend.  I need to add more pictures and information and then link all the pictures so you can open a larger view in another window.  And I have to create a "How to Order" page.  But it will get there.

I have a meeting with the employment specialist next Friday who will help me make contact with the folks at DRS to find out about business assistance.  This week is gonna take forever!!  I am so anxious to move forward with my business.  I feel like I am at a stand still now but financing would change everything.  Lord I pray the financing is really there.  Could it be??  Oh, please let it be so!!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,, Blessings!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

My cat Faxon and buy American,,,,,


That sounds like a heck of a combination doesn't it?  I got an email from Frank's brother in law Jim I want to share with you but first a little story about my adorable but pesky cat Faxon, LOL.

For months now Faxon has decided mommy doesn't need to sleep at night.  Generally Frank comes to bed around 2am and you can bet within a half an hour Faxon is sitting on my head pawing and licking my face trying to get me up.  I have no idea why!!  I get up and check his food bowl, plenty there  but I give it a stir.  He doesn't even look at it.  So I walk around the house to see if something is amiss.  Nothing out of the ordinary!  I tromp back to bed.  Yup, within 15 minutes to a half hour, Faxon is back on my head pawing and licking again.  I push him off me.  He is right back at it.  This goes on until I finally give up and get up.

I thought it might be because we recently lost Missy.  But this has been going on for much longer than that.  Even before Missy started to fail.  Currently the little angel boy is asleep at my feet as I sit here at the computer.  What's up with that???  I really hate to have to start caging him at night but I might not have a choice if this doesn't stop soon.  I am exhausted.  Months without quality sleep is taking its toll.  If you have any ideas what might be causing him to do this please let me know.

Now for the email.  This should have been posted before May 1st but I just got it this morning.  I think we can all pitch in and do our part.  I realize American made products do cost more the the quality is well worth it.  As you all know I make ceramics.  I use American made glazes and paints.  All of which are certified lead free and non toxic.  Think about that the next time you buy dishes made in China.  Are you sure you want to eat off of them?

Here is the email,,,,,,,,

Did you see that Diane Sawyer has a special report coming up this week? They removed ALL items from a typical, middle class family's home that were not made in the USA .
There was hardly anything left besides the kitchen sink. Literally. During the special they are going to show truckloads of items - USA made - being brought in to replace everything and will be talking about how to find these items and the difference in price etc..
It was interesting that Diane said that if every American spent just $64 more than normal on USA made items this year, it would create something like 200,000 new jobs!


Are we Americans as dumb as we appear --- or --- is it that we just do not think while the Chinese, knowingly and intentionally, export inferior and even toxic products and dangerous toys and goods to be sold in American markets? 
70% of Americans believe that the trading privileges afforded to the Chinese should be suspended.

Why do you need the government to suspend trading
 privileges? DO IT YOURSELF, AMERICA!!
Simply look on the bottom of every product you buy, and if it says 'Made in China ' or 'PRC' (and that now includes Hong Kong ), simply choose another product, or none at all. You will be amazed at how dependent you are on Chinese products, and you will be equally amazed at what you can do without.

Who needs plastic eggs to celebrate Easter? If you must have eggs, use real ones and benefit some American farmer. Easter is just an example. The point is do not wait for the government to act. Just go ahead and assume control on your own.

THINK ABOUT THIS: If 200 million Americans refuse to buy just $20 each of Chinese goods, that's a billion dollar trade imbalance resolved in our favor...fast!!

Most of the people who have been reading about this matter are planning on implementing this on May 1st and continue it until June 1st. That is only one month of trading losses, but it will hit the Chinese for 1/12th of the total, or 8%, of their American exports. Then they might have to ask themselves if the benefits of their arrogance and
lawlessness were worth it.

Remember, MAY 1 TO JUNE 1st !!!!!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,,,,,Blessings!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011



I have always dreamed of having a small homestead.  A place in the country where I can live as self sustainable life as possible.  Raise a good sized garden and put up food to get me through the next year.  I do that now, but want to do it in a much bigger scale.

I want to raise some farm animals for milk and meat.  I think Dexter cows would fit the bill unless I decided to sell off some of the milk.  Dexter's are miniature cows.  They produce about 4 gallons of milk a day instead of the average 8 a full sized cow will produce.  Dexter's are also good for their meat.  So when the cow is past producing milk it can be butchered to supply your beef.  They also need a lot less land and hay for feed.

Chickens would be a must also.  Not just for the eggs but again, butchering for the meat.  And of course a hog or two a year.  Probably one would be more than enough for me.

I'd raise a couple of turkeys a year too.  I love turkey,,,, yummy!!!

I know how to make butter, cheese, yogurt and other dairy products to make good use of that milk I would have.  I have a book on making sausage and have tried a few recipes from store bought pork and don't think I would have any problem making my own sausage.

I have researched "homesteading" for years and believe knowledge wise I could handle most anything on a small farm.  But I wonder physically what I could handle with the fibromyalgia.  Even so, I still want to try.  I am still dreaming of that small place out in the country.  I'd probably have to start out slow.  Maybe just add on a few things I want on my farm each year until I got it to where I would want it.  More than likely I would have to hire some help.  But that could be done too.

I'd have a big enough garden so I could sell off what I did not need for myself for the year.  That would help bring in some money to pay bills.  I would still do my ceramics or some other work part time to help with the bills as well.

I don't know if I will ever get to live out my dream but it sure is fun dreaming. LOL.  Do you have a similar dream?  I would love to hear from you if you do.

Until next time,,,,,,, Blessings!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Summer has arrived,,,,,,


It never got below 70 degrees last night and the humidity is currently at 92% according to my weather bug.  The high for today is to hit 88.  I would say summer has arrived!!  Now if the rain would just stop for a while so we can get our gardens in that would be awesome!!

It was so hot and humid last night I had finally cut the air conditioner on.  I really didn't want to have to this early in the season but it was unbearable in the house.  I do have it on "energy saver though".  What that does is shut the unit off when it has reached the temperature I have it set for, 70 degrees, and will kick it back on when the house temperature rises so many degrees above that,  I think  about 2 or 3 degrees.  It does not let the temperature in the house fall below 70.

70 degrees seems to be a comfortable temperature to me.  Not so warm you feel like you are out in the heat.  You definitely feel cooler when coming in from outside.  But its not so cool you feel like you are freezing either.

Last year we had to run the a/c almost non stop night and day the entire season.  I am hoping we do not have to run it that much this year, but I guess time will tell.  We have rain in the forecast Wednesday through next Monday.  The temperatures will gradually drop a bit again so, we won't need it on everyday.

Last year was rough, it was so hot and humid for so long things were just rotting in the garden.  You couldn't get out to work it even early in the morning.  So I am praying for a milder year this year.  At least mild enough to do the garden and yard work in the mornings and not have to run the a/c   24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  That's not good on the pocketbook and it sure is not good on the body either.  But especially with Frank's health and mine, we will do what is necessary.

Hope you have an awesome day!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,,,,,,Blessings!

Monday, May 9, 2011

I am the vine, you are the branches,,,,,,,


Yesterday we had a lesson in church regarding trimming away dead branches to produce better fruit.  In gardening, we call that "pruning away the deadwood".  It was an interesting lesson and really hit home with me.

Jesus said, "I am the vine and you are the branches".  The branches produce fruit, but sometimes they need a good pruning so they can produce more fruit and/or better fruit.  Of course Jesus is speaking on the spiritual realm.  We as Christians can not produce "good spiritual fruit" for the glory of God if we have deadwood choking us and keeping us from doing our best.

Sometimes that "deadwood" is a bad habit like smoking or drinking heavy or gambling.  Sometimes that "deadwood" is people or a person.  Ever get with a crowd of people who do not have the same faith structure as you do?  Do you tend to "go with the crowd" rather than stand up for what you believe because its just easier than arguing?  Have you gotten away from reading and studying your bible because people you have around you look down on it?  (Its so easy to give into peer pressure.)

If you answered yes to anyone of those questions, its time for a pruning.  Cut away the deadwood and get back to the Fruit of the Spirit!!

I find myself in that situation where I need a good pruning in my life.  A major overhaul you might say.  So Lord, let the pruning begin!!  Take control of my life and make me the person you want me to be!!

Jesus said, "Seek ye FIRST the Kingdom of God and all its righteousness."  To me that means we must put HIM first.  FIRST before ANYTHING else!!  FIRST before our loved ones here on this earth.  FIRST before jobs, material things, homes, cars etc.  Everything on this earth is temporary, but we must work towards a higher goal.  One that lasts for all eternity!!

Lead me, guide me and use me for your glory Father God!!  I want to do your will in my life!!  In Jesus name, Amen!!

Until next time,,,,,,,, Blessings!!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Happy Mother's Day,,,,,,,


Tomorrow is mother's day and I would like to wish all the mom's out there a very Happy Mother's Day!!  I am mom to 4 legged babies.  I lost my beloved Missy just two days ago.  She will be greatly missed.  But I am still mom to Rusty and Faxon whom I love very much.  :-)

Its hard to believe I lost my mom 18 years ago on May 4th.  She is much loved and dearly missed.  Happy Mother's Day Mom!!

The picture I have posted in the background is from the early 70s, possibly late 60s.  My mom is the one on the right.  She was a waitress and worked at the Minisink Hotel in Port Jervis, NY.  I chose this picture to post because this is how my mom is remembered best by most people who knew her.  Mom was a professional waitress.  She took a great deal of pride in her work and always put forth the best effort to give the customer the best service possible. 

I learned a lot about taking pride in your work when I worked with my mom for a short time at the Minisink.  Mom always felt it didn't matter what you did for a living, just be the best you can at it.  She was right!!  Today you just don't get the kind of service you did back then, in anything.  Back then folks really cared about what they did.  It wasn't just a pay check, it was a way to build character and reputation.  I would have to say most people today do not show good character or reputation in the way they perform their jobs.  How sad!!

Mom, thanks for teaching me the same values you were raised on.  Your word is your bond, lying is unacceptable, have integrity and dignity in everything you say and do.  And so much more!!  You are missed and never forgotten.  Happy Mother's Day, with love,,,,

Friday, May 6, 2011

In loving memory of my Little Angel Girl, Missy


My Little Angel Girl, Missy passed away last night about 9:15pm.

The background today is a picture of Missy and Rusty.  They were best friends and adopted brother and sister.  Missy was a very loving cat and very special.

Nearly 10 years ago she was "adopted" by Rusty and my other dog I had at the time Teddy.  Teddy was older and starting to fail.  I always believed Teddy got Missy to come in to the house with him and Rusty so she could be there for Rusty when he passed.  The three of them would play and wrestle on the living room floor.  Teddy would tire quickly and come up on the couch and lay with his head on my lap as Missy and Rusty continued to play.

Missy was a "street" cat at the time.  We lived next to a corn field and you would see her chasing mice from the field.  When Rusty and Teddy were out in the yard she would come by to say "hi" and off she would go again.  She was not afraid of those two big dogs at all.  Then one day when the "boys" were coming back in from being out in the yard, Missy walked in with them.  She was standing between them and had this look on her face of, "well, I am here, get me something to eat."  LOL  So many hours of joy watching her play with these two big dogs!!

About 6 months later Teddy past away.  Missy stepped in and took care of Rusty who was still young then.  They became the best of friends, and brother and sister.  They played, ate and even slept together.

About a year ago I thought I would lose Rusty first.  The vet had told me he has out-lived the normal life span for his particular breed by several years.  He has slowed down a bit but it still quite healthy.  When Missy started to fail she went down pretty fast.  I am grateful she did not suffer or seem to have a lot of pain.  She will be missed tremendously.

I always told her she was my "Little Angel Girl" and her ears were her wings.  Now she has spread her wings and soared off to heaven.  She is up there playing with Teddy again along with all the other 4 legged babies that went on before her.  She will never be forgotten!

Until we meet again Missy, I love you!!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Spring cleaning,,,,,


It is spring cleaning time for me.  Well at least a good start on it.  Yesterday I spent the day doing a thorough cleaning in the bathroom and kitchen.  I want to start on the dining room today.  But first I need to run out to the store when Frank gets up and pick up some things to make salads.  I want to make potato salad, macaroni salad and good ole fashioned cabbage salad.

I know, what is cabbage salad?  Well, in my family we ground our cabbage, onions and celery instead of shredding it.  Add a little cider vinegar, salt, sugar and mayo and you have cabbage salad.  Its really like a creamy cole slaw but we never put carrots in it when I was a kid.  I do now sometimes.  I also add a little celery seed because that is a natural diuretic and is good to help promote kidney function.

I have some left over cooked chicken in the freezer that I will pull out and grind up for chicken salad as well.  I think we will just eat light the next few days.

I'm also over due to make home made noodles.  So, I am hoping to have time to get out my rack I made for drying the noodles and make up a few pounds of noodles.  I'll let them dry over night and then bag them up for future use.  I use semolina flour, olive oil, eggs and a little salt.  Makes yummy noodles!!

Then back to cleaning.  The next room I really want to tackle is the dining room.  Its always a mess.  Currently I have my computer in the dining room, as well as two office desks and table and chairs for eating at.  I have tons of paid bills that need to be filed and put away.  The office desks have been a catch all for just about everything and its well past over due to get organized so that is my goal for the next couple of days.  Yes, with the cooking I need to get done as well, the dining room will be slow going but well worth it when it is done.  Then the master bedroom will be next.  Except for some stuff Frank has piled up it won't be so bad and should only take a half a day to do even with shampooing the carpet.

Little by little I will get it all done.  It is suppose to start raining again later today so this is a good time to get the cleaning caught up.  I still have not made it in the garden to get that caught up.  Hopefully soon!!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,,, Blessings!!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

How wasteful the older generation was,,,,,,,,


I got this story in an email and thought it was well worth posting here.  The older folks out there will get a kick out of this story and the younger ones could learn something.  Enjoy!!!

How Wasteful the Older Generation Was ........
 In the line at the store, the cashier told the older woman
 that she should bring her own grocery bag because plastic bags weren't
 good for the environment.
 The woman apologized to him and explained, we didn't have the green
thing back in my  day.
 The clerk responded, "That's our problem today.  The former generation
 did not care enough to save our environment."
 He was right, that generation didn't have the green thing in its day.
 Back then, they returned their milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles
 to the store.  The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and
 sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over.
 So they really were recycled.
 But they didn't have the green thing back in that customer's day.
 In her day, they walked up stairs, because they didn't have an escalator
 in every store and office building. They walked to the grocery store and
 didn't climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time they had to go
 two blocks.
 But she was right. They didn't have the green thing in her day.
 Back then, they washed the baby's diapers because they didn't have the
 throw-away kind. They dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling
 machine burning up 220 volts, wind and solar power really did dry
 the clothes. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or
 sisters, not always brand-new clothing.
 But that old lady is right, they didn't have the green thing back in her day.
 Back then, they had one TV, or radio, in the house  not a TV in every room.
 And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief, not a screen
 the size of the state of Montana . In the kitchen, they blended and
 stirred by hand because they didn't have electric machines to do
 everything for you.
When they packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, they used a
 wadded up old newspaper to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble
 Back then, they didn't fire up an engine and burn gasoline just to cut the
 lawn. They used a push mower that ran on human power. They exercised by
 working so they didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills
 that operate on electricity.
 But she's right, they didn't have the green thing back then.
 They drank from a fountain when they were thirsty instead of using a
 cup or a plastic bottle every time they had a drink of water.
 They refilled their writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen,and
they replaced the  razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the
whole razor just because the blade got dull.
 But they didn't have the green thing back then.
 Back then, people took the streetcar or a bus and kids rode their
 bikes to school or rode the school bus instead of
 turning their moms into a 24-hour taxi service.
 They had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets
to power a dozen appliances. And they didn't need a computerized
gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in
order to find the nearest pizza joint.
 But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful the old folks
were just because they didn't have the green thing back then?

Until next time,,,,,, Blessings!!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Calling all Christians,,,,,,,


I woke up this morning with a million things on my mind and really wasn't sure which thing I wanted to write about the most.  On the forethought was an old saying, "keep your friends close but your enemies closer."  Not very Christian minded is it?

Well,,,,, God hit me between the eyes for thinking that way, LOL.  I went to a blog that I read daily called Amish America and God had left me a message.  There was a 40 minute "teaching video" posted and I watched the entire video.  If you are a Christian and strive to do what Jesus taught, you will most likely find your heart convicted over something you have thought or done at some point in your life.  That is what happened to me today.  The video is also a lesson in history during the French and Indian wars, that anyone should find interesting.

I was intrigued by the title, "Did Jesus really mean what He said?"  This is a true story about The Hochstetler family, settlers in Pennsylvania during the 1700s.  Some were massacred, some taken captive and how their faith in Jesus got the survivors through this great tragedy in their lives. 

I encourage you to go watch the video.  You will be blessed.  The site address is  www.amishamerica.com 

Feel free to leave a comment too.

Until next time,,,,,,,,,,Blessings!!

Monday, May 2, 2011



Its gonna be a busy day today.  Here it is May already.  My garden is not even uncovered never mind having even one thing planted.  It is finally suppose to be a dry day without rain, yippeeeeee!!!!!

Just before noon we have to be at the Decatur VA to check Frank's blood levels.  But once we get home I am going to change and get out to work in the garden by hook or by crook.  I need go get it uncovered, the stuff put away that I covered it with and the very least raked up and the edges trimmed with the weed whacker where the mower could not get into.  If time and body allow I will start to till it.  Otherwise, when we get back from the VA again tomorrow, I will get the tilling done.

The yard also needs the cut grass raked up.  So that will have to happen either today or tomorrow as well.

I might not get everything in the garden this year that I wanted to but I will still have quite a bit in, I hope.  I sure wish the weather were a little more co-operative.  We have had a lot of rain this year.  Everything is soaked through.  And for some of it, the season is getting late to get planted.

Sometime in between yard work I have several phone calls to make.  So much to do every day.  Yesterday I got absolutely nothing done.  Faxon, the younger cat, kept me awake all night and I was just exhausted.

Faxon has this very annoying habit of climbing up on me while I am trying to sleep.  He sits on my head and licks my face and paws at me.  I get up to see what is wrong.  Is he out of food?  No!  Are the litter pans dirty? No!  Is someone around the house? No!  While I am checking all these things out, he goes and lays down!!  Ugh!!!  He does this about every half an hour to 45 minutes all night long.  This has been going on for several weeks and I just can not figure out why!!  I love him to death but I am just about reading to start caging him at night.  I hate to do that for a lot of reasons but I really need to get some sleep, quality sleep!!

This morning when he got me up for the final time he decided to go take a nap in the bathroom sink!!!  He is a cute little bugger even if he is a pest, LOL.

Below is a picture of Faxon.  He is now weighing in at 20lbs.  Not so little, LOL.

Until next time,,,,,,, Blessings!

Faxon was posing when I was taking pictures of my ceramics, LOL