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Sunday, June 23, 2013

Can I just rant and fuss today

I will try not to cuss but just rant about the dang blogger site. As most of you know I do not have ads on my blog and never have. I don't get paid for the stinking ads that keep popping up at the top of the age when I log into to blogger to do a post. This just irritates the snot out of me. So if when you check my blog ignore the ads at the top which are mostly singles sites or just something that will take you to a pop up ad of some sort. Sorry, nothing I can do about them to get them off here. I might have to move my blog or create my own website. I will see what happens in the next little while.

Dang I cant remember what I told you last time I posted so will just update from memory. We are getting plenty of rain to make the gardens grow. It also makes the grass and weeds grow too. The garden is doing good. Rodger said he needed to trellis the cukes but after he told me they had started to vine already I suggested he not mess with them. We have had rain and with adequate rainfall plants will be brittle and break easily. So at this point I think it best to just left them crawl on the ground. Makes them a lil harder to pick but better than breaking the stems an killing them dead. I think we will have enough produce to restock our food supply for winter and lots to eat too. As matter of fact we had canned green beans with new taters last week.

We were so happy to have Aunt Ann and uncle Tripp to visit this past week. Ann is still battling cancer and is getting ready to take some stronger chemo treatments. She is very positive and upbeat and we are still praying an holding out for healing for her. Aunt Ann looks great, her hair is back after having the radiation and it looks good on her. Uncle is his usual jolly self. Love those 2 bunches. Looking forward to working the hunting lodge with them this fall. She brought me some June apples to make applesauce with and a gallon of blueberries for the freezer. Gosh the blueberries were huge an so good. I love to eat them just fresh or after freezing them take them out an let em partially thaw an then eat em. Blueberry banana smoothies are awesome too. Makes a quick easy breakfast for me. And its good for ya too.

Our lil grandson is growing like a weed out there in Nevada. I would so love to see him in person before Christmas. Dang plane tickets are so pricey. I do get pictures and videos from his momma and daddy often tho and we sure do love those. So being a grammy I have to share the pics with ya.

I really love this pic of him and his momma. So precious and you can only imagine what is going on in that lil mind.

Love this one too, he is in a big hurry to get out of that car seat and into something else.

I think I want this one printed off and enlarged, matted and framed. He is a happy lil boy here and if you see the clock in the background it says 1:35 and I just wonder if  he is keeping his momma up. But who would not want to stay up and see that sweet smile. Cant wait to see that lil boy in December. But in the mean time we will enjoy him thru pictures, videos and hopefully Skype once I get my new computer. The one I am on now is old, about 8 years old, and is not capable of video chat. Today I had a warning pop up telling me to shut the computer down to prevent damage due to over heating. I know the cooling fan is not working properly and soon or later I will be puter less. So Rodger told me to go ahead and order a new one. So I did and it will probably be here this week from Amazon. Until then I will keep my fingers crossed.

I did get out and empty out the greenhouse today and move the pots that had plants in them to the herb bed for the summer.So soon as we get time and its not hot as blue blazes outside we can take the greenhouse down and store it away till next spring. I got in the herb bed later and got some of the weeds pulled out of there. I really need to add a good deep layer of mulch in there so I don't have to spend all summer weeding that thing. That gets to be a big job to keep up with. Not so bad right now but when I get busy canning it will get far ahead of me and then I just have to wait till fall and make the best of it. Maybe I can pull the other stuff out tomorrow and get the black plastic laid down in there to kill the weeds and then plant some stuff that I need to replant in there. Sure will make it much easier to keep up with. I already have a pot with some parsley and chives started and just need to make a place for  them that wont get over run with grass and weeks. I still don't have the old bath tub set in the ground to start my fairy garden yet. I am collecting ideas on Pinterest right now for that. I saw a big dried gourd that had the side cut away in a fairy garden for a house. I do have gourds so maybe that is an idea for my fairy house. Yeah like I need something else to tinker with. In this weeding process this evening I did find a lil Mexican cuke plant that had come up volunteer tho. So I will let it be and hopefully get a lil trellis put up for it to grow on.

Not much else happening here on the farm, so till next time, blessings from the McGuire homestead.


Thursday, June 13, 2013

And we keep moving along, slowly

Slowly is the key here, at least in my world. I did get my injection of OrthoVisc in my left knee last Thursday. Well it was no piece of cake goin in, the medicine is very thick which makes it rather uncomfortable in the joint. Not that much pain tho, I have had worse. It was rather sore for a couple days. The doc said it may take a month or more after the injections are finished to see any noticeable difference in the pain level. So we continue and pray they help some.

We have been having a good deal of rain lately. Enough to keep things growing well I suppose. The garden looks good from here. It is also very hot and I cant do hot no more so I have been grounded to the house by Rodger. I am tryin really hard to be good an not cause undue worry for him. But crap! its tough when ya want to get out an do things in the plants and beds and cant. This stinks!! Not sure if its just me or if I am really falling apart lately. I was making supper tonight an used my big big bowl that my sweet friend Blanche Waterbury had gotten me many years ago when I made bread by hand. It will hold enough dough for about 4 loaves. Ironstone is the material its made of. I made a chicken casserole for supper and mixed it in the big bowl. Well I had to hold it up to pour the last bit of casserole into the baking pan and pulled my left shoulder. And no I did not tell Rodger. Am afraid he might take my big bowls away next. I think I may have to trade them in for some light weight mixing bowls from the boys in the near future if this happens again.

Our garden bed we have out back looks pretty good considering it was just planted a couple weeks ago.

In the picture nearest is Lima beans, the thick row is leaf lettuce and greens for salads, then broccoli. It is a lil late to be planting broccoli in our area but I had plants in the greenhouse an ya know ya cant just toss em. So ya plant em an hope they do OK.

The next bed over has tomato plants in it. They are Gypsy tomatoes that I got as a freebie from Baker creek seeds with my order this year. They originated in Russia. So we shall see if they are good an if so will be able to save the seeds for next year. The far bed has my strawberry plants in it with one lone Egyptian walking onion in with em. They seem to be compatible neighbors so I leave em be.

My holly hocks are blooming and lookin good.

They have just gotten started blooming here and with the last heavy rain we had it knocked a few of them over on the sidewalk to the cellar. Also the momma cat has 3 kittens that love to climb the stalks and pull them over too. My old fashioned rose bush that is planted in this bed was blooming too when we had rain and I think I missed being able to cut the roses for potpourri. Once they get wet with rain fall they tend to rot before they will dry. I learned this last year when I cut some tryin to salvage them after they had been rained on. But these lil roses smell heavenly.

Not sure how long I will leave an flower beds if I keep encountering snakes. I walked past this area on the way to close the greenhouse out back and Luna started barking behind me and she had found a snake. I killed it with a shovel and she was having no part of the snake. Then just a few days ago I was inside an heard her barking an recognized the tone of her bark. I went out the front door an she came around the corner from the driveway end of the house then went back as if to say " mom come here". I went to see what she wanted and she had found another snake. I hit this one on the head with a piece of pipe and she grabbed it an shook it to death.  And every time I tried to get close enough to get the piece of pipe under it to toss it out of the yard she would grab it an take it farther from me an shake it some more. I guess she didn't want it near me. She is very protective of me but she hates snakes too. Most dogs will kill snakes but when she had the snake cornered and was barking at it, she backed up an touched a tall plant behind her and jumped out of her skin. So this year that is 2 snakes we have killed here in the yard. Both of them after the heavy rain so probably they got flooded out of their hiding spots. We live so close to the woods its a wonder we don't see more than we do. I just don't like snakes of any kind other than dead ones. Our mower had been out of commission for a couple weeks too an the grass had got pretty big and then we fixed the mower an Rodger had mowed the yard. Don't know where they came from but they need to stay away.

Remember my post a couple weeks back when I had trimmed the grapevines and decided to see if I could get some to start this late in the season? Well it didn't work out so well this time. It might have gotten too hot in the greenhouse for the starts. But even tho it has been hot I have maybe 3 or 4 that have lil green leaves on them. So I will keep them watered and see how they do. I might attempt some more in a few days, maybe this weekend, because I need to whack off some long leggy limbs on the vines again. I was surfing around the Internet last week and found something interesting. Aspirin could in a pinch be used as a rooting hormone. After all it is a derivative of the willow tree of which you can put twigs of in a jar of water to help root cutting. Just more of my useless knowledge to pass on. I also read that spiders don't like mint. So I have the brainy idea to cut some of my mint an toss it in the blender with some water and made a strong solution and trickle it around the house to keep them at bay. I know mice don't like mint either. This summer we have had lots of flys that just buzz around near the ceiling on our porch. They don't come down to pester us but its annoying to see them flying around up there. Lemon mint might do the trick on those. I will let you know. I have some growing all I need to do is cut some an hang it on the porch.

All kinds of things to do and not enough energy to do any of it. But I keep plugging along one day at a time. I get my injection tomorrow and will be off my feet an on my butt for 48 hours then see how much I can accomplish. I know I will have berries to take care of. Maybe get a few herbs harvested to dry to replenish my stock of dried herbs. I let my parsley go to seed again so it will come back up new again this fall and I will have plenty time to harvest lots before frost for our own use. I still need to move my plastic to the herb bed to kill out part of it so I can plant some new plants in there. Another project. And I think I have decided what I want to do with my big bath tub in the herb bed. I want to put in partially down in the ground so it is not so tall and fill it with dirt. I want to make a fairy garden in there and use herbs as the landscape plants in there. I want to plant creeping thyme around the edges to cascade over the sides. Not sure what else I will plant in it but want to do it just for something fun and useful. I have been looking on Pinterest for ideas of how to plant it. Maybe a lil water feature for the fairies. I need "fun".

Not much else happening here on the farm, so till next time, blessings from the McGuire homestead.


Thursday, June 6, 2013

And the battle continues

The battle with my well being that is. As most of you already know I struggle daily with Rheumatoid and osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia. Some days are far worse than others. But in all honesty there really are not many days at all that I wake up and can say I feel good. Matter of fact, I cant remember the last time. Yeah I know we always raise a big garden here and chickens and all sorts of things "homesteading" but you already know I do not do this alone. Rodger does the physical part with the help of Jason and his girlfriend when she is not working. Bless em. Without help no way could we get it all done. Not to mention if I have a good day, I always get out and over do it and spend the next week trying to recover. It is hard for people to understand when you look fine on the outside but people around you have no idea how much pain you are in. Little things that are difficult and painful. Simple things that most people take for granted. Something as simple as hopping out of the car at a gas station to run in and get a drink. Takes me a lil longer. I have to compete with the sore stiff joints then make sure I have my balance so as to not get arrested. Then you move a lil slower because your feet don't get the message from your brain fast enough to keep you from tripping off the curb. Embarrassing to say the least. So you learn to avoid doing these lil things that most people take for granted. Daily life is filled with struggles like this all day. Then there are the meds to help the pain and combat the Arthritis. You take immuno-suppressant drugs that suppress the immune system and IF you get out much at all you end up catching every bug out there with a lower immune system. The meds to manage the fibro make you dizzy, decreased pain sensations all over your body which can be good but also bad. You use caution clipping nails so as to not cut yourself because you cant feel the pain till you bleed and bleeding don't stop fast either with the arthritis meds. Fibro is not as simple as finding the problem and treating it. It is a multi-faceted illness. Effects so many parts of the person. Pain, soreness, stiff joints, headaches, vision problems, digestive problems , I could go on and on. Today may be one thing, tomorrow something else. So no one medication or self help method works for all of them. If only it was as easy as taking a pain pill and just forget it, gosh how nice would that be. But it don't work that easy. Then add in the work injuries from a few years back and the long and short is, I am a mess. My back is a pain in the back, my knees need replaced, surgery on both shoulders and both elbows and they still hurt really bad. One shoulder has bursitis according to the ortho doc who did the surgery. If my life involves stairs, it wont happen. My knees don't do stairs. Tomorrow I start the Synvasc(?) injections in both knees. Each knee gets a series of 3 injections. So 6 total trips to the RA doc for those. Even with insurance this crap is not cheap. But will be worth it if it helps the leg and knee pain and allows me to walk a lil better or longer without having to have knee replacement. I just sure hope the injections work and help. For some folks they work for a long time, others not as long. Life is hard, harder for some than others. I will survive. If you have a friend or family member with fibro and/or arthritis, be patient with them, its hard to cope when you cant do the things your mind still wants to do. If they don't feel like going out, be understanding and take time to just sit an visit and talk with them. Its hard enough NOT being able to live life as we did in the past much less feel rejected by friends and family because you don't feel well or are not physically able to join in social functions anymore. We may be sick but we still need our friends and family. Not many understand that tho, sadly.

I walked out back this evening when I went out to get the eggs to see if my lettuce and Lima beans were up yet. An behold the lettuce was up, the beans, not yet. A lil soon for them maybe. The tomatoes and broccoli we planted out back looks better and seems to have grown an inch since we had some good rain today. We got a lil wind and a good heavy rain for bout a half hour or so. The rain will sure help the big garden too and get the peppers and stuff off to a good start over there. After my doc appointment tomorrow, not sure about my mobility, but we need to pick strawberries again and freeze them. I had started out today to pick the bed by the driveway when the rain came and chased me inside. Rodger may be picking berries alone tomorrow evening.

Not much else happening here on the farm, so till next time, blessings from the McGuire homestead.


Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The garden is finally in.......

Finally , dang it seems we have been all summer getting things finished up around here. We do have out tomatoes, peppers, cabbage and broccoli all transplanted to the big garden. the beans and sweet corn are up and look great. Rodger is going to the garden after work tomorrow to get the grass and weeds out of the corn an beans an get the tiller ran in those. Our potatoes looks really good but we do have several bugs now. I will spray those soon as weather permits. I used the black plastic weed kill method in some of the beds here at the house and have since got those planted as well. When I ordered my few seeds from Baker Creek this year they sent me a free packet of Gypsy tomatoes that originated in Russia. I planted those here near the house in one of the beds so IF they turn out to be good tomatoes I can keep the seeds and if not, no worries. But at least they wont be crossed with anything else. I also had a handful of Lima beans that a gentleman from Rodgers work gave us that his family has raised for many years here in Ky. I planted those along one side of the beds out back. Got some broccoli out there and a strip of lettuce sown.

The one bed outback that has the strawberries in it has out done them selves again this year. You know how scatter brained I am most days. I had forgot to check on them and had lots of berries rot before I remembered to pick them. But they are still producing and doing great. As well as the bed out by the driveway. I will need to pick those again tomorrow evening. Between the 2 beds here at the house we all picked right about 4 gallon of berries last Sunday. Those went home with Tammy (SIL) and Barbara (MIL). Yippee I didn't have to clean those. I still have a good supply of berries in the freezer from last summer. I took my friend Rosie's advice and had Rodger mow the raspberries down last fall so they can come back and produce one big crop this fall instead of working us to death all summer picking them every other day. They have come up and look just beautiful. They look even better since Rodger got the mowing done and you can actually see them now. I do need to get the big weeds out of the row and spread the rotted chicken manure down the sides of the row really soon so it can feed the plants.

You remember last post when I said I was going to give it a shot tryin to start grape vines in mid summer? Well right now they ain't lookin too good. The leaves fell off but that don't mean they are dead. I will leave them be and keep them watered and see what happens later in the season. And so help me I think the grape vines did double time puttin on more grape clusters after I fruit pruned them. May actually have to fruit prune them again to get bigger grapes. I might wait till the yard is mowed to be out there trampling around. The grass is gettin kinda high, not outlandish, but still thick and tall. Our mower needs new blades and we wont get those till we go out of town on Thursday. And needless to say our yard has bloomed again. We have lots of white clover in our yard. More clover and weeds than actual grass. We don't have a lawn, we got a yard. We thankfully don't have an HOA out here in the country or we might be in some trouble. I guess thas why we out here in the country.

Not much else happening here on the homestead. So till next time, blessings from the McGuire homestead.