May 29, 2012

Revamp A Lamp

Really quick - simple, in fact.  Revamp a lamp.  Make it suit your style & decor. 

Here's an example:

I found this lamp at a local thrift store for $5 (no shade, mind you)
Found a black shade at a garage sale for $1 (basic, no character, just blah, but will do)
Added a feather boa to trim the shade for $5 at a local party store....

Voila!  It sits on my sofa table & never fails - I always get compliments when others visit.  EVEN my husband, who is a no foofoo (I'm pretty sure that's just a southern word) kinda guy, loves it.  Best part about it?  It cost ELEVEN bucks.  So, don't go spend crazy amounts of money on lighting, Fancy Pants, go revamp a lamp!

May 21, 2012

Growing Vegetables & Growing Children-

Where do you get your inspiration for posts on your blog? For me it's primarily outdoors-strolling around the yard to determine who's winning-the flowers, the vegetables or the WEEDS.

When I am at a loss..nothing on my mind worth sharing with a friend, let alone the "world" via the Internet...I get outdoors. That newly installed backyard swing is a great spot. Just sit yourself down and let go of both important and trivial concerns.

That was my retreat early this morning. God's great outdoors and the 'dressing up' He has allowed us to do out there is enough to get me going..then the challenge is to grab hold of those thoughts and get them down before they become "fleeting"...never to be retrieved again. I think that is what many of us refer to as "senior moments."

As I sat quietly swinging "awhile ago" my mind began to wander [feet soon followed] from the swing and water feature over to our little garden patch. Noticing the tomato plants with some of them looking I think the word may be "spindly" other words thin remembered so often plants begin to strengthen from the bottom and fill out more healthy when we regularly pinch out "the tops"..less growth to share the nutrients etc.
Looks like we'll have a few butterbeans soon- note that we only have about 16 ft long raised bed..doesn't take a lot of vegetables for two people..this works for us. As the BB's are growing I noticed the heavy duty stock panel they're running on is giving way in the middle..needs a little more support..all these vegetable observations led me to considering an analogy of growing vegetables and growing children..many similarities.

Have you ever known a Mother who's parenting philosophy was: "JUST LOVE THEM" Some women we know as a Baby person..always loves them, always would love still to have another. Some women are often heard saying : "I hate to see them grow up." and yes I recall vividly one lady being described as a wonderful Mother who's parenting philosophy was "JUST LOVE THEM"

That sounds sweet...We mothers usually know how to LOVE THEM..We know what compassion is..we 'get' being UNDERSTANDING don't we?.
Just an aside: I have a grandson who loves all the Natural, healthy, fresh right from your own yard, raised bed or pots on the patio. He knows the value of good fresh fruits and veggies in a diet. But he often has trouble getting from the JUST LOVE THEM [ seeds in the ground] stage to the "done"...He doesn't give up he continues to learn and grow those healthy fresh veggies. He just loves them. [for purposes of illustration only/EMH-atwaba-'secret code' ]

Children, just like good vegetables need more than JUST the plants in my little times they need the right nutrients..more sun or less sun, some need more support, more space, some need the tops pinched out [the discipline, the hard choices, enter WISDOM here] the pruning..and any old kind of pruning won't work. That's why I often run to the Internet to search "how to prune..." various growing things in our yard. Some need just a pinch from the top [like my Mint] and others need to be significantly cut back perhaps close to the ground in order to come back healthy and robust. Then timing is also crucial. I shall always recall the season years ago when Hydrangeas were my new favorite thing in the whole world. Try as hard as I might to get useful feedback from gardening friends I failed. I needed to know when and how to prune. After more search and reading I learned that December and January is a good time and per my own understanding of my reading I pruned them down to the first buds above the ground..You guessed it..I had it backwards. The next season-No blooms..I say all that to reinforce this: The how and when are important. Couple both Knowledge and Wisdom here.

The education from the gardening books don't always come through for you. It's crucial where you go for your information.

Now, back to the "children" page: May I suggest perhaps three sources-The Bible , Holy Spirit leading, The Wisdom and Experience of another generation. I know that last one doesn't generally appeal to our culture today. That's okay, do what you will with it. Consider this like a "buffet"..take what you like but don't spit on the rest.

*this is a complicated subject..not complete or perfect, just a thought path to get us 'to thinking.'

~Gramma...thinking about things


May 14, 2012

Recycled Garden-

If you are new at this gardening thing don't make the mistake of getting in over your head-Keep it simple:
  •   Don't spend more money on establishing your plot than you would spend on produce in your grocery store.  This  defeats one of the main purposes of a backyard garden-Saving Money.
  •   Find plants that  are cheap or even  free. Any friend or neighbor will happily share a little snip or cutting. Root it, plant it-EASY! 
  •  Go to Lowe's and pick up their "dead or dying" plants for next to nothing..Now aren't you proud of yourself!? They often live for you in spite of the early neglect in the marketplace.
  • Don't be afraid to use other peoples ideas..

My husband suggested making  a trellis with this shipping pallet.  I had to share!  It really adds a personal touch to our garden, and I like it! 

Making your house a home does mean  work in the garden and yard. Its worth it! Don't make it difficult. Use what you have around the house, in storage, roadside/curbside finds and make it YOURS - don't buy something your Mother in law or neighbor would offer for free to a good home..Like yours.
Remember recycle, repurpose, reuse. We can do this girls. 

PS - Thanks to  "Like Grammas House" for asking me to share- Much more to come.

May 11, 2012

Mother's Day DIY~A girly post with a sense of humor-Enjoy the scene-

Mother's Day DIY~A girly post with a sense of humor-Enjoy the scene-

The breakfast in bed idea is always a fanciful vision-This works better for me. 
Set up a tray like this. & display in a safe location -
Go to the kitchen, start the Coffee-
Go to the bathroom - Brush your teeth .
There's no way I am going to sip on a cup of great coffee or tea in bed
without first brushing my teeth.

May 10, 2012

Gramma Was a Farmgirl-Imagine That!

It's Oldies Day Again...another re-run as I promised -

No, we did not eat Gourds..the photos are taken 2 or 3
years ago in our back yard. I'm using them to simply to
hold your  attention and I could quickly access them.

As a child growing up in  rural south Georgia  we always ate whatever was growing in the garden - in season.  We ate the same food all time except for the big holiday meals then we had more of it! No actually there were really special  holiday meals. We could always count on  southern dressings, fruits [ thanks to relatives from Florida] and our Mamas and Grandmas' fruit cake.. every one totally different.  I know we are not supposed to put down anything Grandma or Mama cooked but here goes.  I never like their fruit cakes. Today I do like fruitcake-specifically the Claxton fruit cake made in Claxton, Georgia. Their recipe is heavier on nuts and dried fruits and not so much cake/bread texture. 

When our efforts in the back yard gardening really pay
off that usually means we have an abundance of something
we cannot begin to consume...I ask neighbors to please
come get what you want..veggies or herbs/a few times
'I have forced it upon them, leaving a bundle of the good
stuff anonymously at their back door. 

When  I was 10 years old I was the official cook for the noon meal & that meant I got to prepare lunch while other family members continued with the farm work.  Summers were quite hot, the work usually meant hot and sweaty so needless to say I was eager to accept this assignment.  

We ate pretty much the same things every day [ in case you missed the first time I said it]. The menu changed if there was something ready to be harvested...field peas, butter beans, squash,  corn, cucumbers etc.  When fresh from the garden produce was scarce there was the basic pantry stock of dried peas, beans.

.  As the years passed and opportunity for new experiences came into my life I learned about  new and interesting foods like Broccoli, Cauliflower, Brussel Sprouts, Shrimp cocktail, Grilled Salmon, Boiled Shrimp. I discovered that people in different parts of the country grew different vegetables and fruits. My husband never did get  excited about these discoveries. His favorite diet still would be Steak, potatoes, peas, beans, macaroni & cheese-you get the idea. 

Funny thing as I have gotten older especially the past 10-15 years I crave the familiar food from my childhood.  That would be the fried conbread, lima beans, new potatoes w fresh green beans. I did "get over" all the southern fried chicken though. Many years ago we substituted baked chicken/breasts for the  less healthy southern fried entree. Even some of the foods I didn't like as a child I now claim as part of my heritage.  That would turnip greens, collards, rutabagas. Funny how we run back to Our Roots and embrace it with such eagerness and joy.  

Remember what so many have said: "You can take the girl out of the country but you can't take the country out of the girl."

This turned out to be a good Tomato season

May 04, 2012

May Flowers~

Cuttings from the Salvia [labelled hot lips salvia]
I think I finally figured out how to  encourage
continuous grow WITH BLOOMS so it doesn't
fizzle out mid summer

 New Butterfly Bush looks like it will not disappoint us~

May Flowers-I rejoice with each bloom on the
Hydrangeas..because it has been so hard to
find the spot for them to thrive in this yard