Monday, May 30, 2011

Not in the Mood

I'm just not in the mood to write for the blog because I have nothing but complaints.  Since September 15, 2010, we have had 4 and 3/10 inches of rain and our most dry season - June through September - is just ahead.  Instead of winter gray outside to spring green we went straight to late summer brown and high winds since March.  In my experience, you can water your garden with a watering can, but there has GOT to be some rain to really make things grow.  Except for a few tomatoes, the garden is a no-go.

Okay, enough of complaints, but wanted to let people know that I'm still around.  lol

Until next time, God bless.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Time Flies When You Are Having Fun

When I was at the dentist's office last week, my blood pressure was taken.  I've noticed an increase over the past couple of years but ignored it until I saw the reading:  158/89.  Yikes!!  In addition, no matter what I cut out or include in my diet, I slowly add a couple of pounds a year.  If I go down to about 900 calories a day, I'll lose weight.  Need I mention how unpleasant I am when hungry 24/7? 

I know what to do to lower the blood pressure since we were in the fitness business for 16 years.  In fact, I taught aerobics for 16 years -- 12 years at our gym and then 4 more years at a health facility here in Dripping after selling the gym in Austin. 

However, to be on the safe side, I visited the doctor's office to have everything checked out as there is an elliptical in the hobby room in the barn.    Before television broadcasting switched to digital, I'd watch local television to distract me or try to balance a magazine or book to read while listening to aerobic music on an MP3 which required constant charging.  It was barely tolerable, but I was at least regularly working out on the elliptical.  After the switch, I had two choices:  1) run the satellite out to the barn or 2) buy a converter.  Neither choice appealed to me since I can think up more excuses as to why it is inconvenient to exercise which is why, if the truth be told, I taught aerobics. I made a commitment to teach and did not allow excuses.  :D  BTW, the gym thing was hubby's passion.

The blood pressure reading scared me into finding a way to look forward to using the elliptical. 

I bought a CD player and attached velcro to the bottom.

There is no balancing act with the Kindle!  And, I'm always looking for extra time to read.  :D  The time flies by.

As of today, I'm doing about 35 minutes in the morning and about 25 minutes in the evening.  I haven't decided the final workout times, but each day I increase the time and the work load.  Blood pressure is already decreasing along with heart rate.  I calculate that twice a day on the elliptical will help me lose weight without resorting to a 900-calories-a-day diet.

Until next time, God bless.

PS:  The Kindle is the next best thing to a piece of sliced, warm, homemade bread and butter! 

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Garden Chores

I've been in the process of critter proofing the big garden.  Last year I wired about 80 feet of the 4x4 wire panels with about 24 inch chicken wire.  Chicken wire is rough on the hands and did not finish wiring the other side because it got too hot.  At first I thought there was only 60-70 feet left until I actually added the remaining perimeter which came to about 120 feet.  Time wise it comes to about 10 feet every 45 minutes to an hour and I finally learned to wire with gloves on.

This is a 50 foot side that needed the chicken wire.  I did have a bit of a start when I came around to this side.  I had just finished wiring the 30 feet at the end and to the left.  I had been working on the short side for about 3 hours, moved the wire, milk crate stool, and tools around to roll out the wire for this 50 foot side.  I was all concentration when I sat down on the milk crate when I happened to look into the garden:   a skunk was nosing around the veggies!  How it got in and how long Mr. Skunk was mosing around was a mystery.  lol  His tail was down and can only assume he did not consider me a threat.  I picked up my tools and left the area.  I was tired and my hands hurt anyway.  

I came back a few minutes later to see how he was going to get out.  It was then that I discovered that Mr. Skunk could wiggle around and get out through the smallest of openings left unblocked with a landscape timber and unwired near the gate!  In disgust and since it was time for one of my favorite TV programs, Gun Smoke, I retired to the couch with a glass of cold lemonade.

This is the last 11 feet of the chicken wire to be done plus that little space next to one of the gates!  Hallelujah!  

Next, I'm going to fire up the weed whacker to clear around the fence to see if there are any holes under it that are suspicious.  The wildlife camera is attached to a milk crate so it can be moved near veggies where the leaves are showing signs of nibbles. 

Could this be what is eating the radish and blackeyed pea leaves down to the stems?  If Mr. Sparrow and his sisters, brothers and cousins are dining on the leaves, well, have at it!  I'll plant more. 

BTW, pray that we get rain.  Texas is in a horrible drought.  I'm sure you've seen the news that over a million Texas acres are burning.  We've had cloudy skies for weeks but no rain.  Ok, since January 15 of this year, last week we had a little less than 2/10's of an inch. 

Until next time, God bless.


Monday, April 18, 2011

American Heroes Weekend

Luc and I joined Denise and Peaches of Penny's From Heaven for the American Heroes Weekend at Camp Mabry in Austin, TX.  The two-day event included soldiers staging military reenactments, demonstrations by parachuting guardsmen, hands-on lessons in military vehicles, weapons displays, and an air show.  Saturday was a beautiful day filled with American heroes with their families.  It was such an honor to just be around men and women who have pledged their all for the rest of us.

Peaches and Luc in front of the Penny's From Heaven table.

Since I was helping with manning the Penny's From Heaven table, I wasn't able to get up close to the helicopters as I would have liked.  I think the green and white copter was giving rides because it was taking off and landing all during the day. 

Camp Mabry has a replica of the Vietnam War Memorial. 

There was a variety of services represented that are available to American heroes and their families, one of which is Soldiers' Angels,'s From Heaven has a program called Train A Dog, Save A Warrior (TADSAW).

Until next time, God bless.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Brenda Photo Challenge - Spring

Spring is the theme for the Brenda Photo Challenge

When I hear noise coming from a bathroom window, I know this creature has arrived.  A couple of years ago he attacked just about every window in the house for months.  The next year he did not attack as many windows as the previous year.  This year he only made enough noise for me to know he was back.  We can now sleep late instead of being awaken at sunrise by constant tapping on the windows.

I'm glad Mr. Cardinal has matured.  :D 

For more Brenda Photo Challenge, go here.

Until next time, God bless.

PS:  The window needs a cleaning, but I do not particular relish the idea of rummaging around and in the huge southern jasmine to get to the window.  The jasmine blocks the setting sun and I have no desire to trim it up.  lol

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Straight Out of the Camera-Sunday

It's Straight Out of the Camera Sunday again.  There are two rules:  1)  photo must be taken by you, and 2) no tweaking but cropping is allowed.

My camera was busy when I made a trip to The Natural Gardener this week.

For more SOOC, go here.

Until next time, God bless.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Plant Protection for Nippy Springs

The Natural Gardner had wire cages wrapped in a frost protection material for an early start on plants that cannot take cold weather.  The material looked like this found at Gardener's Supply.

Any wire fence will do, but this is probably wire used when pouring concrete.

This is one type of clip which can probably be found wherever fencing materials are sold.  Some cages had only one layer, others two and three layers.

In this instance bamboo polls were used with heavy clips.

Just thought I'd pass along some ideas for you  in the north country.   :D  In fact, I'm will have this fabric on hand next year when I plant the bare-root strawberries.  I only have to lose 40 plants to a hard freeze one time to learn what to do the next year!  Our planting guide said to do the bare-root strawberries in late January or early February.  The two-week hard freeze in February was unusual for us in Central Texas and I just didn't think to cover the strawberries.  Duh.

Until next time, God bless.