Thursday, November 25, 2010

I'M DONE!


The shop addition is FINALLY finished. We have been painting since early September. The outside and the interior of the new part was easy. After finishing the painting of the new part the old part looked so yellow and dingy, so we tackled painting the old part. We had to move all the stuff off the walls and on the cabinet. It was like an explosion in a mattress factory. It has taken us weeks, but it has been well worth the effort.

Now there will be many hours spend working on more projects. Hubby keeps saying over and over, "I love my new shop." He working a workbench, but before that project is finished materials for the next one has arrived.

Yesterday lumber was delivered for a wood shed. Do you ever finish with projects around the house?

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Honoring our Veterans, especially one

My hubby served in the Army National Guard for six years the first few years we were married. Yesterday we were eating at the best barbecue place in Georgia and a gentleman came in wearing a Vietnam Veteran's hat. My dear hubby got up and went over to him to thank him for going to Vietnam in his place. The gentleman was so stunned he was speechless. He did manage to utter a thank you.

I want to honor my dad here today. He served in the Army during World War II in Europe. He fought across France, Belgium and Germany. He was in that horrible Battle of the Bulge and was wounded twice. The last time he was wounded was after the war had ended when he stepped on a land mind. He was issued one of the last Purple Hearts during the conflict in Europe. My Mom says it was the LAST Purple Heart issued, but I can't document that statement.

I was shopping one day and found a book, "US Forces in Europe" by Ian Westwell and Steven Smith. Anything about WWII, especially Europe, always sparks my interest, so I picked it up. I opened the book and there at the beginning of the book was a double page photo of soldiers. The descriptions reads, "Previous Page: Armour--M10 tank destroyers and M4 Shermans--and infantry--men of the 'Big Red One' await the order to advance. The date is 1 March 1945 and US troops are deep in Germany. US Army via Real War Photos."

There stood my Daddy. I'm positive the fourth man from the left is my Dad. My brother thinks it our Dad as well. Unfortunately, our Mom has lost her vision and can't see the photo. My brother saw him in a documentary on the History Channel one day.

My brother told me one day, that our Dad marched a hundred miles in three days across Europe and THEN had to fight a battle. We don't realize what hardship and sacrifice these veterans of World War II did for our country. They surely are the greatest generation and I will forever be grateful to all of them for what they were willing to do to keep us free.












This last photograph includes a photo my Dad (standing alone with his arms crossed) sent to my Mom with a handwritten note on the back that reads, "Limback Germany June 1945" next to the photo in the book.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Retirement in the Fast Lane

I thought retirement was a slow pace of life. WRONG! We are living in the fast lane. Stop! Let's slow this buggy down, so we decide to do another project. This time it's more than a couple of days, it's major.

Hubby has been squeezed in his work shop for years. He could hardly turn around and had to use his table saw as a work bench. Sad, I know. So, we decided it was time for an addition to the original shop we built with our very own hands in 1973. Well, it actually took us years to finish that project. How many? I'll never tell, because it's just too embarrassing.

His 12' x 20' shop now has a 12' x 16' addition. It's kind of sad, changing the looks of the little building, but well worth it giving Hubby all the much needed space.

As you can see from the photo he has really been cramped in the old space.

The best part of this new addition? We didn't have to drive the first nail, but it was very frustrating watching the carpenters struggle to get the siding matched to the old part and level. Just a minor detail that drove me crazy. It took them three days to finally get it right, only after Hubby stepped in and told them what they needed to do to get the siding level. It was a long two weeks getting the structure finished. However, we did do the painting outside and inside. It took FOUR gallons of paint to cover that new drywall, two gallons of primer and two gallons of regular paint and a week of labor. The outside was a easy, we were painting primed Hardiplank.

The new addition makes the old part look really dingy, so now we are going to paint the walls/ceiling and trim. Oh my gosh! Look at all that stuff that we are going to have to move off the back wall of shelves to paint! The dark brown trim will be painted the lighter "bisque" color to match the new part. I'm sure it will help make the old part brighter doing away with the dark trim. It just occurred to me that it will probably take two coats of the light paint to cover that dark brown. Oh no! I convinced Hubby that the goldish color would better match the saw dust. You can see every speck of dust on that dark brown trim.


The new look seem strange to me still, but I'll grow accustom to it, eventually. There are still a few little things that need to be done outside before we are finished. The underside of the soffit has to be caulked and the windows scraped and cleaned. I just sloped the paint on those windows, because it was about about to rain, so I have to scrape the paint off now. I hope it won't be years before we get around to them.

Hubby is so thrilled. He wants to build a work bench and has been searching for plans. I think he will end up with a combination of several taking the best features from the plans he has found.

Oh yes, there are now tab curtains up in the shop. They actually add a bit of coziness to the place.

I would like to get this project off the to do list before Christmas. Do you think we'll make it?

Monday, August 2, 2010

CAMP MEETING 2010


Several weeks ago my best friend from high school invited us to camp meeting. So we drove to Dawsonville for the day. If you know anything about NASCAR you have heard about awesome Bill (Elliott) from Dawsonville, this is the same Dawsonville.

This camp ground was established in 1838. The church tent is surrounded by at least 50 smaller tents. Actually, these structures aren't really tents, but wooden structures that appear to have been there for a very long time. Families have been coming to this location for a week in July of camp meeting for almost two centuries.

Church services are held three times a day, 11:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m., and 7:45 p.m. During services the occupants of the tents (houses) can't sit out on the porches that face the preaching tent. The preaching tent is a huge tent open on all four sides, but is equipped modern items like ceiling fans and hanging light bulbs for lighting. The floor is dirt, but covered with wheat straw. It was extremely hot the day we were there, but surprisingly comfortable under the tent area with all the fans going.

The family tents (houses) are all very similar, long and narrow, with only basic necessities, like kitchen and bath facilities. There were a few new tents that looked like they were really fancy with substantial doors and real windows and a few had air conditioning. Our friends' tent only had fans, but despite the heat it wasn't unbearable inside, which is surprising considering the fact there is no insulation in the walls or ceiling and they all have tin roofs. They had a very basic kitchen, and a very old table cover with an oil cloth cloth that would seat at least 12 people. In addition there were two "bedrooms" down stairs with curtains covering the door openings. The entire second floor was nothing but mattresses and could accommodate at least 20 for overnight and a bathroom with a shower and toilet. It was a very charming place in it own unique way. This is the side of the tent that faces the church tent.

My friend's family has been going to camp meeting all of her husband's life and he's 65 and I'm sure his parents were going when they were young. It is hard to realize families just like my friends have been doing this one week in July for 172 years. We told my friend we want to come back next year for the 173rd year.

The driveway side of the tent. Despite the brutal heat this was a fun day.
video

Thursday, July 1, 2010

IT'S HARD WORK













I love having a garden, but when the produce from your garden is more than you can eat or give away you have to do some thing with the stuff. We couldn't eat all the green beans we have harvested from our three rows of beans, so I had to preserve them for future consumption.

We don't like frozen green beans and we don't care for the tin taste of green beans you purchase at the grocery store, so I can those delicious, tender beans in glass Mason jars. The past week I've canned 30 pints of beans. It is really hard and very hot work, but it will be so worth it this winter when we are eating out of our garden.










We have also had lots of cucumbers, but we are eating those for breakfast, lunch and supper. I remember when we went to Israel we were served cucumbers for breakfast and they were so refreshing. Actually, it was one of the few things we would eat, but anyway, when we have cucumbers for breakfast we always say we are having a Jewish breakfast. We aren't real crazy about pickles so we will just enjoy the freshness of this vegetable right off the vine.

Unless we get some rain the green beans are finished, at least they aren't blooming because of the hot dry weather. We do have okra that is blooming and our tomatoes are about to ripen all at once. Just what we have been waiting for so we can have BLTs, the only time of the year we eat bacon.

It was really hot on our porch. I didn't think anyone would believe me if I told them it was 110 degrees on our porch, so I took this photo. I've never seen it this not before, at least on our porch. June had some record highs, so I suppose this is one of those days.



Sunday, May 16, 2010

WE HAVE BEEN VERY BUSY

When you are have fun time flies. The past month has been extremely busy. We have been to Florida twice. Our first trip was to Ocala to see Hubby's cousin and her husband. The next trip was to St. Augustine to see a close friend. Both trips were great, but different.

We visited a horse farm in Ocala, which was really a cool experience. This farm raises thoroughbreds and trains them to race. They have had trained several famous horses that have won big. This farm was 460 of beautiful rolling pasture land. We met the yearling trainer who gave us an excellent tour of the entire farm. We met the training manager and the birthing manager. That's not what he is really called, but that will have to do for now, because I don't recall his exact title. He is the manager of the area of the farm that over sees the mares that are waiting to give birth and then cares for the colts and mothers after birth. We also visited the cemetery. Our guide told us they only bury the horse's head and heart. I was going to ask what happens to the remainder of the horse, but was distracted and never had an opportunity to ask, in other words, I forgot to ask. Maybe that was a good thing. We did ask why only the head and heart and he said, "that's what makes the horse run, their head and heart, if they don't have it there they don't make it as a race horse."

We had a great time in St. Augustine. It has been a very long time since we had been in that old city. Our dear friend took us on the grand tour. We visited beautiful old churches, rambled along ancient streets and allies and we ate at great restaurants. We had great shrimp at a place called "Osteens". If you are even in St. Augustine be sure to stop there to eat. It was very cold and windy at the beach. We only left our vehicle long enough to take this photo to prove we were in Florida.

We had a family of Carolina Wrens in our bird bottle on our porch column, but for some reason they abandoned the nest. I know for sure one egg hatched, because I saw the baby bird pop it's little head up to eat when one of the birds flew in to feed him. We have no idea what happened to the one that hatched, but after two weeks Hubby took the bottle down to clean out the nest and we found four other eggs in there. One was broken, but the other three were still okay. We are hoping another family will build a nest in there. We so enjoy watching them.

I'm posting random photos of our two trips, the birds and the quick project.

Hubby was volunteering at Historical Jonesboro yesterday and said he needed a haversack for his keys, wallet and cell phone. I asked him what type of fabric would have been used during the 19th century and he stated, probably canvass. Well, I just happened to have some left from his wool vest project. So I ran upstairs and whipped out a haversack for him and he was a happy camper. This is probably the equivalent to a briefcase. Haversacks were in use even in the early 18th century and were a vital part of the soldier during the American Revolution.

The garden has been planted and most of the vegetable are up and thriving. Well, except for the corn the squirrels dug up. We have declared war on the squirrels, especially after we had one on the side porch, up on the hand rail and then was climbing the post the bird bottle is on. They might be the reason our little birds left their nest. Squirrels are rats with fluffy tails.

Hopefully, we are going to get to fish before it gets too hot. We are too busy if we don't have time to fish.

We still miss our Oscar Snuggles terribly. He kept the rabbit and chipmunk population down. Yesterday we saw four big rabbits down in the back yard and the chipmunks are digging up my flowers. The squirrels are trying to take over, and I almost stepped on a big snake in the side yard. Not good. I never realized how our kitties helped keep so many critters under control. We may have to rent us some cats.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

OSCAR SNUGGLES, KING OF TIDEWATER

















































OSCAR SNUGGLES, KING OF TIDEWATER
August 25, 1994 - March 5, 2010

In mid August 1994, a small young female kitty appeared at our house. We thought she might be pregnant, but we weren’t positive. She was sweet and loving and I managed to talk Hubby into letting me keep her. After all, we had an old, sick male that we had had for almost 12 years, Buster. So, we kept this sweet little female. We named her Mollie, but we call her Mollie Moo Cat, because her markings looked like a cow. She was white with gray cow marks. Soon after Mollie arrived we lost Buster of kidney disease. It was a slow, painful illness and we soon had to put him down.

It wasn’t but about two weeks before we realized Mollie must have had kittens. We scooped her up and took her to the vet to see if she had in fact delivered kittens. The vet confirmed she had and was probably finished. So the great hunt began. We looked and looked and looked for those kittens, we looked under neighbors’ decks, under out buildings, under storage sheds, we looked every where, but we never found Mollie’s kittens. We look for a solid week. We finally gave up, but I prayed, “Lord, you know we have looked every where we know to look for those kittens, so please move on Mollie to bring them to us.”

It was Labor Day weekend and we had been out on Sunday night. The house was hot when we arrived home, so we just left the back door standing open. I had gone from the kitchen into the bedroom to after something, but couldn’t remember what I went in there for, so I went back to the kitchen to try to remember what I was after in the bedroom. I looked up and Mollie ran in the back door with what appeared to be a rat, but I soon realized it was a KITTEN!!!!! She put this plump little gray kitten that was to be named Emmie Sweet Pea, down on our kitchen rug. This little thing was so tiny her eyes were still not open.

Mollie was ready to eat, by this time she was eating really well and was demanding food. So we fed her and then I put that little baby in a shoe box. Mollie soon wanted back out, to retrieve more kittens, we thought. We left the back door open most of the night. While little Sweet Pea and I “slept” on the sofa waiting for Mollie to return with her siblings. Finally, I closed and locked the door around 3:00 a.m.

I awoke suddenly after daylight, jumped up, ran and opened the back door. Mollie dashed in. She went straight to that kitten, fed her and then demanded more food for herself. In the meantime, I was off to Wal-Mart to buy a storage container to house this little family in our back hall linen closet. I had no idea how much of a mess they would make, so I wanted them contained. When I arrived home with all the gear (storage bin, litter box, litter, etc.) I inquired to Hubby about Mollie. She had wanted out and had been gone for about 30 minutes. I had unloaded the van with all the stuff and was in the process of putting a nice soft bed in that storage bin when Mollie ran in the back door again with yet another little kitten. This one was also gray, but he was not at all plump, he was skinny, frail and his fur was fuzzy looking. This little fellow was our Oscar Snuggles. We put those two little kittens over in the nice bed we had made for Mollie. She jumped over in with her two babies and never wanted out. So we concluded she had brought us her kittens, just like I had asked the Lord to do—He moved on Mollie and she brought the kittens to us.
We had Mollie about a year, but lost her out on the road. We were heartbroken, but we still had those two kittens.

Those two kittens brought us so much fun and joy. We had Emmie Sweat Pea for 12 years. She had gotten really fat and slow and a couple of the neighbor’s dogs killed her in our back yard. It was possible she had a heart attack trying to get away from them, because there were only a couple of marks on her. Again we were heart broken.

Then there was Oscar Snuggles, King of Tidewater. He was king, for sure. You know dogs have owners, but cats have staffs. That is certainly true. He had two servants that faithfully took care of him, babied him, pampered him, spoiled him rotten and he loved it. He slept with us most of the time, especially in the winter time, because he would get cold, even though we faithfully covered him up on the sofa, but he would always join us a couple hours after we went to bed.

We lost our sweet Oscar on Friday morning. I was going down the driveway on my way to my Mom’s, Hubby had taken the trash to the can and to open the gate for me. When I saw Hubby running to the road I knew it wasn’t good. Our Oscar Snuggles had to hit and killed on the road. We have had him 15 and one-half years and to our knowledge he never attempted to cross the road. We don’t know if he was chasing something or was just going to check out the other side of the road. Who knows? He had the beginning stages of kidney disease and had already exhibited symptoms of that horrible disease. I was already grieving over the fact that he was headed for a slow, painful death. It kills us that he was hit, but we are almost positive it was an instant end for him.

To say we are heart broken is an understatement. This happened Friday morning, early and I still can’t stop crying. I know this terrible hurt will heal in time, but right now it is almost too painful to bear. Sweet Oscar you will always be in our hearts, because you and Sweet Pea have left paw prints on our hearts. We love you, little Buddy Cat.







Monday, February 15, 2010

AND THE SNOW FINALLY ARRIVED


The weather man warned us. A dusting of snow for the metro Atlanta area. Well, we got a tad more than a dusting, it was a little over three inches of snow. It started snowing around 1:00 p.m. Friday. We were in Chick-fil-A having lunch with friends and there was only a flake or two, then as we started to leave it started to snow people. By the time we got home the ground was covered. This is a lot of snow for us. By Saturday noon the roads were mostly clear and by Sunday they were completely clear. That is really good since most of us don't have a clue how to drive on snow.


Monday, January 25, 2010

FINALE--On the clothes












Before Thanksgiving I started on another 1860's vintage vest for Hubby. Only did I manage to finish the thing recently. If I had made this one first, it would have been the only one. The linen vest was a challenge considering the fact it has been years since I have made anything, so the wool one was, shall we say, a bit more difficult. The interfacing was canvass, which made it much thicker than the linen vest. I broke three sewing machine needles making this wool vest. Hubby is thrilled and he says it is really warm, which is nice since it has been soooo cold here this past month. Well, it's cold for the south.

I don't know how it happens, but I manage to get involved (suckered) into Hubby's projects. He had me over at the history center splitting fire wood. Don't get too excited we had a gasoline splitter, not a manual wedge and sledge hammer. I would have been out on that project if we had not had the gasoline splitter. Actually, it's good exercise and it was great just to be outside. We split all the wood behind me, plus another half row behind what you can see.













The painters have FINALLY finished painting the exterior of the house. Thank the Lord! They started before Thanksgiving and didn't finish until about a week ago. It was a long hard job, even though we didn't paint the first thing. We are still in the process of replacing some rotted wood with PVC, but hopefully that will soon be finished. Hubby is putting primer on the last piece of PVC we purchased to replace the fascia boards around the back porch. AND we still have to clean paint off some of the brick and the copper roof over the bay window. The painter didn't understand why we were upset over the green paint on that roof.

Our builder's son, Kenneth, has done a wonderful job replacing the rake boards and the gable vents with the new PVC products. We won't have to worry about rot on those places ever. We have decided as the trim has to be replaced because of rot we are using the PVC. We have found a source in Atlanta that has just what will be needed.

It will soon be time to turn the garden.