June 28, 2012

Weekend Edition

F is for FINICKY~

Yes JENNY Matlock I confess:  I am a FINICKY grandmother,  I prefer to NOT be called that; favoring the softer Gramma and yes I can spell it this way if I want to and I do! I will be sharing at http://jennymatlock.blogspot.com/2012/06/alphabe-thursday-letter-f.html  and I hope you will follow there and read some of the other F compositions, remarks, poetry or prose, whatever.
The word FINICKY is defined thusly: adj. fin·ick·i·er, fin·ick·i·est
Insisting capriciously on getting just what one wants; difficult to please; fastidious: a finicky eater.

  • I refuse the tag of FINICKY eater but yes I have to admit to most of the remaining definitions.  As a FINICKY Gramma I do like things done my way, on my schedule etc. 
  • I want things returned to the exact spot where you found it..not ocassionally-every time. I want to be able to reach for it in the dark and find it in that same spot. Uh, why not?
  • It just makes life so much more  uncomplicated. I expect beds to be made in the morning, kitchen counters to be shiny, clean and uncluttered. Why not?
  •  I expect toilets to be flushed EVERY TIME, towels to be almost ANYWHERE except on the floor.  Why not?
  • And yes, I expect cups and glasses to dissappear INTO the dish washer when no longer being used. Uh, why not?
  • I know this may be difficult to accept but I even expect dirt, trash, mud and leaves & such to be left if not in the yard on/in the door mat. Yes, thats what that doormat is for.
Where ever and how ever did I become such a FINICKY GRAMMA? My four children are to blame. They trained me for the finicky role. The Three boys were 18 & 13 months apart then our daughter four years after the youngest of the boys. We had all four a few months short of my 26th birthday.  I recall silently talking with self and making the desperate, whining observation: "I know I shall never see the day when I can have a CLEAN HOUSE.." Enough said.

Yes, I have a perfect right to be a FINICKY GRAMMA..in fact I am on the verge of saying "And proud of it."

 [Note to Children and Grands: Love you ATWABA ]

June 25, 2012

Expect The Unexpected

 Happy Monday, everyone!  I hope you all had a wonderful weekend....How many of you are getting your home ready for the fourth of July?!  My husband and I are fervently trying to tie up a few loose ends that we have strewn around our home - for example, we were up until midnight last night tiling our kitchen floor.  Maybe I shouldn't call them "loose ends".  I should probably refer to them more as a freight train wreck of remodel projects we have to finish before company arrives!  I have found that when I have company visiting, fretting over the big stuff is pointless.  They tend to brag on the little things... the special touches you've put in place to make your home one of a kind.  For example,

I found this antique nail barrel at our home when we purchased it.  It makes the cutest umbrella bucket at the front door.  I've found versions of this barrel on etsy, as well.


my granddad's prized possession when he was alive were his boots.... they are sitting on the bottom shelf of a side table, nestled in a wooden orange box. 

Lastly, a completely unexpected kitchen decoration is a glass vase with vintage spools of thread from my great grandma's sewing trinkets.  It sits on top of my cabinets, and adds such a bright pop of color!

When you are staging your home, don't go to the local department store and compile a cookie cutter room... make it special.  Get creative.  Learn to expect & use the unexpected.

Until next week,

June 22, 2012

Cucumber Magic-from My Friend Jean

  • 1 gallon Cucumbers                                                     
  • 2 Cups Pickling Lime/or Pickling Crisp
  • 1 gallon Water
  • 8 Cups White Vinegar
  • 8 Cups Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Canning Salt
  • 2 Teaspoons Each of: Celery Salt, Pickling Spices, whole Cloves

Wash and slice cucumbers. Cover with lime and water. Let set overnight.

Next Day: Drain and RINSE WELL. Cover cucumbers with ice water and let set 3 hours. Drain and cover with sugar, vinegar,canning salt and Spices.

Stir together; set overnight. Cook 35 minutes. Let come to a boil the last 5 minutes. Fill clean jars & seal

  • Jean's secret: To each jar of pickles place in the bottom of each jar one small dried CAYENNE PEPPER before filling with pickles. Do not be tempted to add more peppers. One should be just right. Two is Too Many. We like the little kick from the pepper but not everyone will appreciate the extra zip of flavor.

June 18, 2012

Revamp A Lamp, Part 3: My Daughter's Lamp

Hello, all!  Sorry I missed you last week... I was on vacation with my mom & sister, enjoying some much needed girl time!

Anyway, the last of my "Revamp a Lamp" posts will showcase the lamp I have in my daughter's room.  It was an easy "revamp".  I purchased an old, 60's style lamp at an estate sale for $10!  The column was a gold leaf, and the shade was gold, as well.  It was dated, but definitely still had "good bones".  To redo the lamp, I simply sprayed over the gold leafing on the column, to make it a nice white base.  Then, I wrapped the shade with a beautiful brown paisley material that has great texture - a satin base with velvet paisley detail.  I added some burlap and mauve fabric roses, and vintage buttons.  Lastly, I added a pink grosgrain ribbon edging to the top of the shade for detail.  I love how pretty it sits atop a column side table built by my hubby.  It sheds just enough light on our rocking chair that I read "night, night" stories to her in. 

The Richest People in All The World-

So much in the news about who makes the most money, who pays no taxes and who pays the most in taxes and who should pay more or who's not making a decent wage. Who is rich, richer, richest? Who is really poor, poorer?

As my silver fox  and I ambled about the back yard in late afternoon enjoying the made to order weather day with just enough warm, pleasant if surprising breezes,  birds around & overhead, the ocassional  dogs barking in unison not far away and now and then a distant reminder of the trains acoming...we held hands, leaned in close one to the other  with silly little smiles-his aging sweetheart said: "You know we are so very  rich." His immediate reply: "You are right..We are rich."

Who are the richest people in the whole world? Without hesitation I submit to you the truly richest of humans on this earth  are without a doubt FARM FAMILIES. 
These 'close to the earth, closer to God" people awaken early in the day. They know how to make use of daylight hours..  They understand the value of honest to goodness physical labor. Then they appreciate the need for and  benefit  of adequate rest..sometimes by way of a daytime nap but definitely  enough rest at night to restore the body.
They grow fruits and vegetables, make their jellies and jams, produce their eggs and milk, meat for the dinner table and provide beauty for their environment with  trees and flowering plants  Their healthy vegetation attracts other necessary traffic like honey bees, butterflies, little green lizards etc. The farmer often makes his own feed for the livestock..fields of hay harvested and stored for use all year.  Farmers work  with their hands, hand tools,  or with the best farming equiptment they can afford  and they learn to care for and repair the farm equipment,  learn to adjust to the changes and problems even disasters that come with  weather events.
The farmer knows how to  make do, do without and keep on keeping on when everything is  beyond his ability  to control.

Gods Word tells us that His Creation speaks to us of the Creator. Who better than a farmer to  learn from Creation?  And who more than a farmer is so totally reliant upon this Creator?

*postscript from Gramma:  A few days ago as we sat on the front porch grading everyone's lawns, flowers & such.. I chose this time to share a very personal thought. "How sad  to spend one's days inside not being able to get outdoors. .If I am ever seriously disabled  please make sure I can spend time outdoors.

June 16, 2012

Carefree Moments~

2005 Reunion of Jackson High School class of 1955 with Ted's high school friends Dean & Peggy Ryser - Driscol

A little trip that included DeFuniak Springs & Bellengrath Gardens

Orange Beach the first time 

June 07, 2012

Inspiration or Conviction?

Conviction -  Inspiration - or just empty  unused  flower pots

They've been set aside over there for months I am sure but they caught my attention on this early morning as I enjoyed my morning coffee.  Those unused flower pots are like me-the Christian- a Vessel made for a purpose, intented to be used.  Those containers once held flowers and trees and were chosen for a special place. . As a Child of the King many years  I was always needed.  Summertime and VBS usually found me working as a teacher or more often VBS Director. As we get older  we o are often not needed and then we sigh with a bit of relief thinking.."Oh well it would have been an exhausting job anyway. Perhaps I'm not really up to it."  That's when  seemingly insignificant jobs come along and we realize it can be good for us.  Even 70 year olds  need  that old fashioned "character building"  as we become a bit rusty, slow or less confident.  Like the unused pots the original design is still in tact..they even  look  good with the new and the shine gone.  There is  another kind of beauty in faded and weathered vessels.  What an amusing thought-description.  That could be me- faded and weathered.  I like that. How often I have said about dried flowers. "They are another kind of beauty," to be enjoyed indefinitely.   This outdoors inpiration place is really working.

June 04, 2012

Revamp A Lamp, Part 2 - My Daughter's Chandelier

When planning my daughter's nursery, I combed through magazine, after magazine, looking for the PERFECT vintage inspired baby haven.  Her room is a compilation of everything that made me go, "aaah!".  I often found myself frustrated with the process, because everything that I liked, everything that editors were using to stage their nursery shoots with, were WAAAAYYYY out of my price range!  So, bound and determined to make it happen, I shopped ebay, craigslist, flea markets, and garage sales... and we made it happen.  This is the chandelier I found for the room on ebay for $20!  I was so excited, because at that price I was landing a chandelier for a fraction of what it would have cost me, even at a big box store!  To "fancy it up" a bit, I added crystals (so cheap at Hobby Lobby) and draped some of my great grandma's costume pearl necklaces around it.  It is PERFECT for a vintage little girl room!  Don't you think?! 

PS- I'm NOW working on covering shades for the bulbs - fabric flowers (found the fabric on sale for .50 a yard) covering chandelier shades (found them at a garage sale - 5 for $5.00). 

Have a great week, and GO REVAMP A LAMP!

June 02, 2012

Weekend 'Yarden" Report-

Yes we get excited over such little things...Like our first Summer Squash. Then there's the Mint by the kitchen door-Its looking great for Iced Tea on a hot afternoon.  And who can overlook the fact that in a few days I can have FRIED GREEN TOMATOES from our own back yard. Understand, we only have a little Patch of a Garden..one long raised bed plus a few tomato plants, a few fruit trees, an "add on" little patch w corn, squash & more tomatoes. Wait, I cannot forget the SURPRISE garden..no kidding the cucumber and pumpkin surprised us..popping up in very close proximity to the  [far corner of the back yard] Compost Pile. Then there are a few more herbs too. rosemary, parsley, chives and garlic. You know garlic does more than flavor our food..it makes Bee-utiful BLOOMS that dry to such perfection -and the price is just right[Our grandson Ethan would also be thrilled over this little patch of fresh and healthy!]

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