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Within the confines of this blog, you will find bits and pieces of the life and times of myself, my family and friend dear and near., far and wide, few and far between. You will find bits and pieces of my world, tho small to some, but huge to me. You will find everything from 'soup to nuts',; recipes, hobbies,crafts, gardenings,loves of my life, GrandLoves-a-Plenty, and even my pets... Sooo, if you can handle family life, enjoy the tour of my 'Stuffings'.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Blasted Anyway

How I am longing for days like this,
smelling the bluebells or dusting
my nose full of pollen from the lilies...

or swinging in the hammock while
gazing at the blue sky through the treetops.

Instead, it's presently only minus -15 degrees
but promising minus -23 by morning with
bitter cold arctic winds making it feel 
like minus -44...yes, you read that right.

We are getting Blasted !!!

Winter is here, the part no one likes.
I'd even rather be shoveling piles of snow
off my deck or playing in it with the grandkiddles.
But this???? ... not funny
Mother Nature.
It's not so nice when it's hard to keep 
the house warm or my achin' bones.

So what do we do in this refrigerator we 
choose to live in, you ask.
I'll be taking down the Christmas tree,
loading the branches with popcorn strings and 
cranberries, orange slices and tallow.
All for the birds so their bellies stay full and warm....
(after the cold snap!) but I will keep the feeders full.

I'll start a puzzle on the Stow n' Go felt
so I can move it off the table and make room
for card games and ' Farkle.'
How bout you? 
What do you do when the cold keeps you inside?
Bake something or roast something long and slow.
That'll warm the kitchen , at least.

No matter your pleasure,
Stay warm.  Our whole country is getting
a blast of cold, cold air that will 
frustrate some, please others.
Just do remember to bundle up if you 
' have to ' go out.  Don't let your nostrils freeze together, 
but do make the best of it.

Keep the little ones home from school
if their schools haven't closed.
Do not send them out where they can get 
frostbite in less than 10 minutes.

Keep on dreaming along with me....
of warm spring days.
Stay home and stay safe.

Blasted Anyway !!!
                                                     


Monday, December 29, 2014

That Time Again

During the fall and early winter we had a trail camera set up near where my hubby was planning to put his deer shack during rifle season.  About a month later, once the snow started to threaten to stay, this big boy was on the camera.  Bill's heart began to pump, but never to see the 8 point buck again.  He passed through during the rut, but that was it.
click any photo to enlarge  
 Hunting season had come and gone and another buck was never seen in real life or on his camera.  Before the next snowfall came with furry, Bill decided to move the camera closer to the cabin so we could watch the deer, turkeys, songbirds, squirrels,  as we keep them happy all winter with treats of apples and pumpkins and occasional hands full of corn.  
 Bill came in with the camera card, all excited to see if anything was still around after the annual deer hunts.
He got pretty excited to see the 8 point was able to outsmart all the hunters at least in the acres near and around our neighborhood., " but wait, Bill, that's not the first buck you saw,"  I told him.  This boy has a much taller rack and a darker forehead.

He was coming to the cabin at all hours of the day and night which was nice.  Maybe we would see him in the flesh if he comes in steadily.  As you can see, 
 By early Christmas morning, he came in sporting only half of his rack.  It's that time of year again, when the bucks shed their racks and put all energy into resting up for a new set of antlers come late spring, through the summer and early fall when they develop velvet to protect their new ' look.'   
Don't quote me on all my facts and fiction, but at least I'm close.  I do wonder each time I see one of these beautiful creatures, if we will see them again in another year.  The antlers will fall off, leaving a distinctive nob where they had been.  I will remember this fella by the dark, nearly black forehead and grayed muzzle he already has.  I'll watch for him, feed him and hope to see him again.
On the warmer days of winter, and before more snow, I will walk a few of the closer trails to see if I can find these antlers before the mice chew them for their calcium.
Enjoy the wonders of the woods around you.
You never know what you will see.

It's winter in our north woods where the air is crisp,
the shadows are long and the snow is icy cold on our skin.
The four seasons can be bittersweet !

Until next time ~
Stay safe and toasty warm
And careful of the deer in your headlights !

Thursday, December 18, 2014

We Wish You ~~~

A Merry Christmas is coming, 
and I'd best get my ' busy' on.
 Fall has come and gone when I wasn't looking,
Snow is making a spectacle of itself,
rather well at the cabin, our promise place of 
peace, quiet, and calming.

 The tree is up, decorated and being enjoyed.
Can you believe it took me a couple days to hang 
ornaments and hide a traditional Christmas pickle.
I know, but it's a German tradition in our home.

Logs of creamy, melt-in-your-mouth fudge have been cut and boxed, ready for the trip they will be taking as~
 our first Christmas celebrating will be with our daughter and her family.  Everyone else, our boys and their families will meet us there for fun, food and games.  There are always games., board games, snow games, who can hug Grandma most gently games and Scrabble, of course.  This Grandma can't wait.
 I also am anxious to do some cavity-craving therapy.  I have been getting feedback on who's bringing what so I know my sweet tooth will be more than pleased.  Remind me to make a dentist appointment when we return and to check my blood sugars and cholesterol.  These treats could do a person in....yikes !
 All of the goodies will be the bonus of our weekend.  The most important thing for us to remember about Christmas, is that True Love was born in a Stable
 (Thanks to a dear friend who sent us that perfect saying to remind us of the reason for the season.)
So, until we can get back to the comfort and warmth of our Cabin in the Wood, we wish you most joyful
preparations for Christmas.

My entries have been few and far between lately, but I still do some blog reading, just not commenting much at the moment.  Thank You for your patience with me.
So, until next time or year,
I wish you love and happiness 
and Christmas Joy all year round.
\o/
/\

Friday, October 31, 2014

Still Dreaming

all photos in this entry are borrowed from the internet, thank you.
 I've been dreaming again...
I'm still yearning for a, wait for it, wait for it,
 a SUNROOM...
just like the yellow one,...
still dreaming.
 One I can enjoy while basking in the sunshine
during our long, long winter days,...
one to bring a new year in with...
a place for that perfect Charlie Brown Christmas Tree...
still dreaming.

 Look, here's a dream of a sunroom for my daughter's
large farm house, wouldn't that be dreamy?

I'm still dreaming of the day I can curl up in my Crazy Quilt,
just like this one., while I carefully cut~
 Snowflake Ballerinas .
One can dream, can't she???
I'm reminded by my dear, once again ~
" Don't rush me," he says.
So I dream on.
Hmmm, shall I hire a carpenter?

Have a fun weekend  and
DREAM BIG !!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

' The Hunt '

Are you one that is driven by ' The Hunt?'
 This past spring, I had the honor of scouring throughout 
an old barn.  There were treasures everywhere like weathered old doors like the one leaning above, inside a barn stall.
There were a number of antiquated chairs, each with their own charm, barn charm, in this case.  I'm partial to the blue one.
 Look who caught the corner of my eye...
well disguised on a fallen leaf as I walked by him
trekking through the woods.  Was he hunting too, for a place to burrow into the mud for the winter?
 OK, back to ' the hunt.'  Lying on the loft floor of the old barn was half a round table top that will later be made into a side table.
 What do you think ~ a trap door or a hay hole cover?
One thing I knew for sure, I loved it, especially the handle.
 These are old piano panels, left to be re-purposed, I suppose.
The keys and inner workings of the piano were later found all charred on a burn pile.  What a pity.
 On another ' hunt,' this beauty of a woodstove was found.
Bill helped to lift and load it later, for it's trip to a new home.
Notice the door ~ angels or eagle's wings, mountains and trees ? 
Inside the door of this grand primitive stove was a thick roll, I mean thick, roll of money that went with the stove.  Hmmm.
  My guess ~ a test of trust.
Back in the barn were more treasures such as these 
cross-glassed windows. I'm in love.  
 Mirrors are always a great find., especially when they are
plate-glassed.  They still are the most treasured to me....
heavy, strong, long-lived.  This one came off an old dresser.
Even antique re-bar can be re-purposed into something useful.
Tho none of these items came home with me,
I know they will all be put to good use sooner or later.
I simply enjoy ' The Hunt.'

Thanks for hanging around while I turned a few antiques over and checked them for sturdiness, usefulness and charm.

Maybe, just maybe, 
my next hunt, I'll bring something home to work on.
For now, I have plenty of projects in my own barn
that need dusting off and enjoyed in our home.

Enjoy ' The Hunt ' if that's how you roll.
Until next time, keep it wonderful, fun and safe.
\o/
                                                     /\


Monday, October 6, 2014

Harvest's End

Late into Sept. and we were harvesting potatoes on a sunny day.  Bill dug them with his homemade digger that he pulls behind the tractor.  Next ~
 since my bender doesn't bend so well I can still handle the tractor.
I do the driving of Lil Blue while Bill fills the bucket with the spuds.
Back at the house, the potatoes are rinsed the first time while still in the bucket of the tractor. 
 The bucket is tipped slowly, that's my job, then poured carefully on the self-fabricated screen.  After they are sorted and the last of the dirt is sprayed off, ( we both do that ),

they are left to dry in the breeze before ~ we start

 sorting and bagging.  They are left in a dark corner of the garage until we finally move them to the cellar in the basement.  Normally, we store them right away, but this year, our basement is damp from all the fall rain we've been getting.  In the meantime, we have been warming the house on cooler evenings to help the drying process along plus fans.  
 This year's harvest includes German Butterballs, a few Yukon Gems, All Blues and Purple Vikings.
 The onions suffered some of the hail damage on their tops.  They've been sorted, brushed clean  of the garden soil and 
 braided for winter's many meals.  There are 5 braids all total and a small onion sack full of the one's without a stem long enough to braid.  The bruised ones were cleaned and salvaged what I could by chopping and freezing for hot-dishes.

I apologize for the length of this post, but I promise this is the end of our gardening and harvesting.  The apples too, were hail damaged so most of what we picked was sauced and made into pie filling.   

 Who needs an apple picker when you have~
 the real deal !  Bill trusts me to lift him as high as the tractor bucket will go so he can hand pick as many apples as he can reach.
 Sad, but most of these were so badly damaged that they became deer food.  I couldn't even make sauce out of all those bags of apples.  The basket and bucket were the best we could do....such a treat, at that.  
Our harvesting is nearly done.
Today I canned the saurkraut that was fermenting in the garage.  I only have last season's photo  ~ sorry, but we got the same amount.
Oh, and
we were blessed to save a total of a dozen pumpkins...mostly pie pumpkins that I baked off, pureed and stored for later use.
And that's it folks.  My pantry is full, the freezer is stacked to the top and I have no complaints.
We have no control over the weather so we are just very grateful for what we 'were' able to salvage.
Amen to that for God is Good !
Have a grateful week dear friends and family.
\o/
/\

Saturday, October 4, 2014

The ' S ' has Returned

I guess all I can say is...Dag Nabbit !!!
 Yes, you're seeing it, all right ~ that nasty white stuff.
Bill didn't even get his easy chair off the deck yet.
 Just a couple days ago, 
 we were enjoying the beautiful scenery across the road and
the gorgeous Sugar Maple in our yard around the treehouse and the barn.  Woe is me :/
 My favorite tree by the cabin no longer sports it's
Red Coat.  I'd much rather see these vibrant colors we've been blessed with the past couple weeks than ~~~
 THIS.  Go away ' white stuff falling from the sky.'
BUT, on the brighter side...
I've once again dragged out the canning supplies, 
 you know, all the things that make life easier for this domestic diva and her dear hubby.
 In the past two days, I've whipped out 51 pints of Raspberry Jelly, 18 pints of Pickled Beets,
5 pints of Pickled Carrots, 11 quarts of Canned Apples ready for pie, and another 7 quarts and one more pint of Applesauce.
Phew, I'm tired but it's a good tired...a feeling of accomplishment.  Next time I will show you what else we did this week.  We feel like little squirrels and the birds, storing food for a long winter...so we've been told.
THAT, I'm not quite ready for tho.
So it goes in our great north woods where we happily choose to make our home.  The changing of the four seasons is actually quite OK with me.

Have a great weekend.  I'm going to snuggle under the workings of a warm shawl with my crochet hook and some yarn.  What are you going to do?  Whatever it may be, may it make you happy.