Sunday, September 3, 2017

Before and After...







I decided to "paint"  my swing...
I actually used solid color stain to coat it.
Here is the before.   Looks rather "weathered".





Here it is  "after".
It is a very light grey.
I like how it came out!


Now,  I need to get some darker grey 
for the part that holds the swing.  
It is too weathered,  too!
I'll do that once my back heals 
from doing the swing!
I keep forgetting that I am getting old,
 and I need to do things a little at a time,  
not like I used to do them.  haha

See the purple ball on the side?  
I call that my Redneck gazing globe!
It is my Great Grandson's play ball,  
and he uses it when he comes to visit.  
It just adds a little whimsey to the back corner.

Always something to do,  something to improve,
or something to fix!  That's life and life is good!
Praying for the victims of Harvey
 and hoping that their recovery
 is speedy and complete!

'Til next time,
Love ya,  Jean

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Lavender cookies...








I've been wanting to try these Lavender Cookies 
for a long,  long time...



The perfect accompaniment is a cup of tea...


I picked this teapot up at a thrift store many years ago...



 It is English china... I love it so...



 I like to use my "Tea Rose" 
Pfaltzgraff to serve on...


So here are my cookies...

I was not disappointed...

They are so good!

You can see the little pieces
of lavender flowers in the cookies...

I have two small lavender plants...
I planted this one last year...

This is a different variety...
I planted this one this year...
It seems more robust than the older one.
I've read that if you cut it way back in the Spring,
 it'll flower more freely.
 I will try that next Spring.

So,  here is the recipe for the Lavender Cookies...

5/8 Cup butter
1/2 Cup sugar
1 egg
1 Tablespoon Lavender flowers,  chopped
1 1/2 Cup All purpose Flour

1/4 Cup sugar,  for sprinkling on top of cookies

350 degree oven 15 minutes or so

Beat butter,  1/2 cup of sugar 'til creamy.  Add egg.  Mix 'til fluffy.  Add Lavender flowers and flour.   Mix 'til incorporated.  Drop by teaspoon onto greased cookie sheet.  Sprinkle with sugar.  Bake 'til lightly brown.  Enjoy!

'Til next time,  Love ya,  Jean  



Sunday, August 20, 2017

Banana Jam...








I made some Banana Jam the other day...
I gave it all away to my family, 
and the little boys who live across the street.
They all love it!



It is very easy to make.

It is bananas,  sugar and lemon or lime juice.

The recipe is as follows.

Ingredients:

2 cups of mashed bananas (about 5 small)
2 cups sugar
2 tablespoons of lime or lemon juice
(This recipe makes about 2 1/2 to 3 cups of jam)

Instructions:

1.  Fill the water bath canner with water and bring to a boil.
2.  Wash the jars, rings,  and lids.
3.  Fill the jars with very hot water to sterilize.
4.  Put all ingredients in a pan and stir occasionally.
5.  Let the jam boil for 5 minutes.  Keep lowering the heat as it thickens,  so that it doesn't scorch.
6.  Ladle the jam into the jam jars.  Leave 1/8 inch head space (clear space) at the top.
7.  Wipe the rim of the jar to make sure it's clean.
8.  Put the lids and rings on.
9.  Using the jar lifter,  lower the jars into the boiling water and process for 10  minutes.
10.  Remove from the water bath canner using the jar lifter and allow to cool completely on a towel on the counter.  

Note:  If you don't want to water bath the jars,  you can refrigerate them and just use it within a few weeks.

This is delicious!  Especially good with peanut butter on a sandwich!  Try it,  you'll like it!

'Til next time,   Love ya,  Jean


Friday, August 4, 2017

Hummingbird Moth...






I saw this Hummingbird Moth 
in my garden today.
I had a hard time getting a picture of it,  
it flew around so fast.
This is the moth that grows 
from a tomato horn worm.




I feel lucky to see this little beauty in my garden.  I'm sure they must help with pollination of crops,  they move around so much! Just thought I'd share!


'Til next time,  Love ya,  Jean

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Keep those wasps away...







This absolutely works!



It's a paper bag hung in an area where you don't want the little buggers!  It is filled with plastic grocery bags,  the top  is stapled together and a piece of twine is added for a hanger.  Here's how it works:

The wasps see it and think it's another nest and avoid the area.  So simple!

And a great solution.  I've been using these for 4 years now and have not had one single little nest anywhere on the deck roof.  Amazing!  So simple--so good!  

If you are bothered with wasps,  try this!  It really works!

'Til next time,  Love ya,  Jean

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Meet Jamie...







I have reverted to my childhood!
I saw this doll on the internet 
and I just had to have her!
Her name is Jamie!
She is part of a collection called
"Maru and Friends".
I love her and I think she is so beautiful.
She is 20" tall and the perfect size
 to make and design clothes for.
I will probably have to make my own 
patterns for the clothes.  
I have not found many patterns 
for clothes that will fit her.
Actually,  that's part of the fun for me!
I love doing this.
So,  let me show you more of her.


Jamie is well balanced
and stands on her own.

I love her beautiful jacket
and the cute T shirt underneath.

These boots are to die for!

I love her beautiful hair!

She will be warm this winter!

I love her eyes,  she even has eyelashes!
And if you look closely,
she even has some faint little freckles.
So precious!
I am in love!
She brightens my day
just by looking at her.

Let the fun begin!
I will keep you updated
on the progress of her wardrobe.
Do any of you out there
have some dolls that you play with,
or is it just me?

'Til next time,  Love ya,  Jean







Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Water Lilies...









Had 3 Water Lilies open on Monday.
 Raining yesterday and today,
 so they are probably closed up now.
This one is growing on the bottom of the pond,
  not in a pan,
so it gets lots of nutrients from the soil in there.
They are so pretty!

I love my little pond!

'Til next time,
Love ya,   Jean


Sunday, July 23, 2017

Glimpses of the garden...



















Short on time today...  Here's what's bloomin' in my garden...   

Love the American Lady Butterfly,  I chased her all over the yard, trying to get a picture.  She finally decided to drink from the Liatris.

'Til next time,  Love ya,  Jean

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Mushrooms, of sorts...







These are growing on the roots of a maple tree that we had to take out.  The tree was leaning over my neighbor's house and I was afraid that it would fall on it.  These fungi are very large and look different from each other.  There are more different kinds scattered around.  I think they are pretty and very interesting.





I will leave them where they are.  
I am interested to see just how big they will get.



I found this little guy on a geranium plant yesterday.
So happy to see him/her!

There is always something happening in my garden.
Every day is a new day!

'Til next time,
Love ya,  Jean

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Allium...








Still beautiful even when "in seed"...

I am hoping that I can save these seeds,
plant them, and that they will grow into bulbs.
Everyone says it will take a long time... I can wait!
 I'm going to give it a try!
I love the beauty of them!
P.S.  I don't have a picture of them in bloom.  I'll have to wait 'til next Spring to show them off!  Lol

'Til next time,  Love ya,  Jean

Friday, July 7, 2017

More beauty...








My garden attracts a lot of bees...
This is a good thing, 'cause without them,
 we would have no food...
The bees pollinate the flowers 
to grow our crops,  
a good reason not to use pesticides 
or herbicides in the garden.
I am trying a more natural approach 
to insect and weed control.

(Click on the pictures to enlarge.)
My jungle on the left side
of the Hastings St. side garden...

The only lily I have left this year.
 The bunnies ate all the others.
 Note the tall cage that I put
around it to save it!  

A double Coreopsis.  See the little bee on it.
So cute!

A little red,  white,  and blue touch here.

I kept some Milkweed for the butterfly larvae.
They are for the Monarch butterflies.

A daylily...I don't know the name of it!
It sure is pretty and very large!

My Privet that I've trained into a tree.
The bees love it when it blooms,
 they are all over it!
It smells so sweet.

Close up of a bee on the flower of the privet.

So this is a small tour of my garden today,
it changes daily.

Stay tuned for more to come!

'Til next time,  Love ya,  Jean

Monday, June 26, 2017

Roses...








A rose is a rose...

I love them!!!

so romantic...

'Til next time,  Love ya,  Jean

Friday, June 23, 2017

Backyard side garden...







I redid my backyard side garden 
the other day...

It had been a few years 
since it really got any close attention...

(Click on pictures to enlarge)
So,   first,  I edged the grass...

And concentrated on getting the weeds out...

I had planted some strawberries and the water was running off onto the walk instead of staying at the plants.  So I made a little terrace effect with the grey bricks and filled it in with some soil.  It works now and looks nice.  I then added some pine bark mulch to top it all off.  I love how it looks now.

Ahhhhh... gardening...  my passion,  my love!

'Til next time,  Love ya,  Jean