small sample of my crazy quilt embroidery

About Me

I am a consumate crafter. I knit, quilt both sane and crazy, scrapbook, bead, mosaics and any other thing I can think of along the way. Someday I also hope to do real glass jewelery and stained glass but those have to wait until I have room and more time.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Some say, "Boots on the Ground"...I say, "Hands in the Dirt"

Boots on the ground. Used to be a military saying to indicate that the planning stages of an operation were over. That soldiers would now be out getting the job done. Now everybody uses it for everything. But I digress :).

For me, winter is filled with gardening catalogs, filled with all kinds of new inspiration for spring. And my head gets filled up with all kinds of new veggies to grow, ways to grow them and then what to do with them after harvest. I drool and dream over all kinds of new flowers I want to use in the landscape to make my world more colorful. But mostly, us gardeners just impatiently wait for the first time we can go out and plant something and get it all going once again. We just hang in there barely, until we finally can go out and get those hands really dirty for the first time of the new year.

And I did that today. Planted peas. Peas need cold and can even tolerate moderate freezes once up and growing. I presprouted my seeds to help them get up and going even faster. I watched the weather reports and knew we have an entire week. at least before the next frost. So today, the presprouted seeds went in and hopefully, they can finish the sprouting process in this next week and be off and running before we have any more seriously cold weather. I do have my beds set up to be able to cover the plants if that old silly weatherman suddenly tells me that we are dipping down into the low 20's or even below. If it really got cold, 15 or below, I would probably loose it all. But that package of seeds cost just over a dollar. I think my pocketbook can handle that. Not sure my spirit will do as well!!

But I do have some nice things growing as we speak. Growing enough to even harvest some. This last fall I took my chances and planted some lettuce and spinach. I got them in very late and had serious doubts as to how successful I would be. But the weather has been pretty mild so far this year and I have been pretty religious in covering the beds when it did get down into the lower 20's. So, so far, so good. And tonight we get a salad to celebrate.

I also have a bed of garlic, planted this fall, that is growing very nicely. We should have all the garlic that we need for the next year!

So, now out of the garden and onto the wilder side of the yard. The pond. I have had 2 really cool frogs living in my pond, almost from the beginning. Whenever it is even a little bit warm out, they come out onto this rock and sun themsselves. Of course, if I get anywhere near, they immediately jump back into the water and hide under the rocks. But today, I almost got him. He was there with the camera trying to focus and he jumped away just a hair too soon. But he only got into the water and I still was able to at least get this picture of one of them.

Here's a picture of last week's birdfeeders from outside the apartment door. Thought you might want to see what it all looks like from this angle. For now. Till I change the feeder poles out for a new easier to use one.

Last, but not must see the chickens as I see them every afternoon about 2. They know they get to run free about this time everyday and they get so wound up and ready that it is quite humorous. Especially the boys. They just can't wait to get out and be boss of the bigger barnyard.

The more that we let them free range, the less they eat the food that we have to buy for them. So the cheaper our eggs are and probably the healthier they are for us. But we could never let them run loose all the time, out here in the country with all the predators that lurk about. Including the one that lives in our house. Holly, the fox terrier/chicken terrier/cat terrier/skunk terrier/squirrel terrier..........and so on, and so forth

Monday, January 16, 2012

Who Knew, I might actually BE a morning person?

I have never been a morning kind of person. Normally, I am not a great sleeper and what sleep I do get tends to be late in the sleep cycle and by morning, I am just not all that ready to put boots to the ground.

But all that changed when these came to live with us.

That beautiful rooster above goes by the name Hamlet. He has a brother, Horatio. They don't find any need to be extra quiet in the morning. And as soon as they sense the slightest bit of light in the sky they start crowing to be let out of the coop and down into the run.

And if the weather is particulary cold, I must take the waterer back in the house and refill it with warm water because chickens really must drink a lot and often to be healthy. If you let them drink really cold water, it chills them from inside, and that's not so good.

So once I get all that done, there are 2 very hungry house cats to be dealt with. Most mornings, my old grey kitty is awake and on my upper chest just about the same times as the first rooster crows. He is not all that happy about being 2nd in line but he doesn't get a choice. So as soon as I get back in, that can of cat food gets popped open and that makes them happy campers til evening.

Next up, 2 doggies. One who sleeps in the house and one out in a kennel in the garage. Both are very ready to go outside. Not as much for a nature call, as one to observe what the outside world has to offer them today. So poor tired, sometimes cold me is out trying to get both of them to stop nosing all around and get the necessary potty business done.

Then finally I get to pay just a little attention to me. I get to pour a cup of this.

And I get to take it and another bowl of cat food out to the guest apartment and feed Finn who is also waiting anxiously. Not for the food, but for the company. She has already watched me go make my morning runs out to the coop and she is also not happy that she was not first in line!!

I knowit looks like she could miss a few breakfasts, but actually, she is still a kitten and not all that plump. It was just this position she takes on the floor when she knows I am on my way in the door. She wants her belly rubbed immediately. Before the cat food, before I can sit down to drink that coffee and start the most peaceful part of the morning.

Bird watching. Right outside the french doors of the apartment is a wonderful garden, now with bird feeders positioned for the best view from indoors. I pull the chair into a prime spot, and sit with that coffee in such blissful quiet. Sometimes Finn even bird watches herself, from a perch right by the door.

But much of the time, she thinks she can get those birdies if she really tries. And that involves several charges to the door. The doors, that she finds are very inconvenient for her birding instincts. Oh well, lots of much bigger predators live outside, including one of my dogs. So she will eventually get used to the fact that she can only sit and watch the show.

None of these pictures can come close to capturing the experience I am getting every morning. I find that just getting near the window with the camera sends all the pretty birdies scurrying away. Many times I have as many as 10 adult male cardinals and their mates, 2 or 3 tufted titmice, 2 to 3 blue jays, numerous Carolina Chickadees, white crowned sparrows, white bearded sparrows, towhees, juncos, house finches, ect. Also one very gorgeous red bellied woodpecker. Then of course, the squirrel. Soon I plan on getting one of those really good feeder pole systems with the various add on arms. And a squirrel baffle. But once I do that, I will also buy a squirrel feeder cause, heck, if they already live in my yard, I should get to watch how cute they are. Yes, some call them tree rats. So what, I got ground rats too and unless they come inside, I happily let them live their lives.

But I guess the whole purpose of this post is to let you live my morning, vicariously with me. The peace and serenity that I get from these small hours is amazing. This morning, as I was ready to come in, Finn decided momma's lap was the softest, warmest, bestest place to take a morning nap. Allowing me even more time to watch those awesome birdies.

Hopefully I will start blogging a bit more. Now that I have found So many great ideas to do for the garden this spring. I am already working on several of them and should have reveal posts soon. See you then