Friday, November 28, 2008

Partridge in a pear tree?

Thoughts of sugar plums....

Dancing in Belles head???( OH NO! Not that time of year again!! I hate it when my Mom puts that crap on me and then she laughs!!)

Thanksgiving is over and the Christmas onslaught begins.
This picture is last years tree, and Belle sporting her "Christmas Antlers".
I just had to put it in. I can't wait to get Penny spruced up for this year!

My neighbors all went to Walmart at 4 am. Really. At 4 am I was into a good sleep. Fact is, I didn't get up at my usual 6 am. I went back to sleep. My hubby knew I was tired after the prep and actual Thanksgiving meal, so he fed the cats and then fed the dogs in the tv room, and shut them off with the slider. I didn't get up until 8 am. We decided to go get our Christmas tree since Bobs Mom has never in her 73 years even seen a Christmas tree farm ! We went to the same place just off the Parkway in Floyd, got our tree picked, cut and wrapped in record time, then headed north up to the Peaks. Enroute, I saw my first partridge here in Virginia! They are my favorite game bird, and if we had them here like we did up north, I'd have to take up hunting again!( I think you know them as ruffed grouse.) We took a left down 43 to Gross's Orchards for apples and peach cider and some peach butter (Moms favorite) and then made it home to feed the horses and ourselves with leftover turkey and all the trimmings! So I too went shopping on Black Friday. No lines anywhere.....

Thanksgiving was so nice with Michele and John and baby Caine, and our neighbors and friends, John and Becky. We really enjoyed the company. Thats what any holiday is about. Family and friends. I am Thankful for both...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Out houses Sears catalogs and sunbeams

These are pictures of the wall paper border in my laundry room.
I really like outhouses.

This website has pictures of outhouses taken from real outhouses, not drawings...

I have been thinking about outhouses lately. I had a conversation with my friend Becky about a relative of hers and the use of the old time Sears Roebuck catalog for toilet paper. She said the child loved to rip pages from the Sears Catalog, so the mother would set the child down with the catalog in the house, while she tended to farm chores, and when she returned the child would have nicely torn pages from the catalog, which the mother would then put in the outhouse to use as toilet 'paper'.
I was thinking about the outhouses back where I am from in Northern New England. We actually built one on our property in New Hampshire, and I got to design it. Well, almost. I wanted a '2 holer', but my then husband wouldn't go for it. His reasoning was, "Nobody wants to sit beside you during that process."( That wasn't my idea, but then...he's my X.)
My idea was to put a smaller and a larger hole side by each, one for smaller butts (ie; children) and one for bigger butts, (ie; my husband.) My friends Grandpa's farm had a series of run in 'sheds' that attached to the main house, stringing a long set of buildings ending in the barn. Most New England farms were set up this way, because the amount of snowfall sometimes made it impossible to get through the heavy snows to the cows. Near the barn in one shed was the 'winter' outhouse. Grandpa Proctors was a three holer. Small, medium and large size holes cut side by each across the seat area. This was important because there were always children of varying ages in the family. This outhouse was used during the winter months, and there was a regular one outdoors, which I never got to experience, because it had been torn down long before I came to know the family. The 'indoor' outhouse remained, because the sheds all stayed intact.
I fondly remember using that outhouse, cobwebs and all, although I didn't have to. The indoor plumbing had been installed for years, but the outhouse appealed to me for some unknown reason.
I never used a Sears Roebuck catalog, and I was thinking that it must have been so rough ! Then my thoughts rambled on to old catalogs, and I realized that the paper used back then, was much thinner. I beleive it was close to the Scott Tissue type still on the market for septic concious users. It seems to break down easier than the soft cloth-like brand I prefer.
Some people would by now be saying, "EWWWWWW", to the use of catalogs and outhouses, but it really wasn't so bad. Lime was kept in a pretty container in my outhouse, and after the spring cleanout of nests built by squirrels and chipmunks and webs by the spiders, it stayed clean and odor free all summertime. I kept reading material there, and flowers in a vase. It had a diamond shaped window set just so the occupant could see out across the hills, and another user couldn't see in. The seat was an oak modern one attached to the board area where the hole was cut ...( the big one, remember?)... and in colder weather I had a styrofoam ring cut from that solid pink insulation board, and it was toasty! I liked going out to that outhouse, except in really cold weather. Nights were saved by the use of a 'chamber pot', but thats another whole story.
I wonder how many outhouses are still in use around these parts of the country, and I have decided that I will devote some time to seeking them out and photographing them before they are all gone.
This photo has nothing to do with outhouses.
It is the sun beaming down in streamers on my road. I took this on the way back from Beckys house where the whole thoughts of outhouses began while running the dogs at her place 'over yonder'. Sometimes when I see a sky like this, I am led to believe that the sun 'highways' lead up to heaven, where the great spirit is waiting for us all...
Probably with a really nice outhouse to use...


Monday, November 17, 2008

Sunrise, serenity, camera and gun shots

" Red sky at night, sailors delight,
Red sky at morning, sailor take warning."

I alway think of this saying when I see a sunrise or sunset. Sunday morning sported a beautiful pinkish sky, which looked so much like a sunset I got my camera and snapped a few shots.

This morning the sky was alight again, but seemed more gold and orange. Again I started shooting. The weather man says there will be snow showers today. My lawn is frosted over this morning, and my cats go out their cat door, turn around, and come back in to find a comfy place in bed.

The sun is coming higher now at 8:30 while I sip my morning coffee, and check my back yard for critters.
Then the loud shots ring out, and my heart squeezes. A succession of three loud bangs, and I know a deer has fallen, and I can only hope the hunter is a good shot, and the deer will die quickly. Thoughts come of a mother being hit, and then her babies. I hope not. I have a hard time swallowing my coffee now, and my serene morning spell is broken.
Back to reality.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

My trees..bottled,faced,flowered

When visiting me in my little hollow, if you are observant, you will notice that some of my trees have faces. You will also notice that I have bottles hung in my trees. And if you wander the paths through the woods, you may notice that there are little objects placed inside niches in trees...

This face has eyes that light up when its dark...

A closer look will find a blue jays feather has gotten wedged above his mouth..Does my big oak have a fondness for feathered creatures? I know he likes small children...

Robert Frost is one of my favorite poets........
INTO MY OWN by Robert Frost
One of my wishes is that those dark trees,
So old and firm they scarcely show the breeze,
Were not, as 'twere, the merest mask of gloom,
But stretched away unto the edge of doom.
I should not be withheld but that some day
Into their vastness I should steal away,
Fearless of ever finding open land,
Or highway where the slow wheel pours the sand.
I do not see why I should e'er turn back,
Or those should not set forth upon my track
To overtake me, who should miss me here
And long to know if still I held them dear.
They would not find me changed from him they knew
Only more sure of all I thought was true.

If you look closely at the trunk of this huge yellow poplar you will see a face...
Seek out the hidden treasures all around us.........

Now in November when most leaves are turning brown the Camellia at the left corner of my house is in full bloom. I relate to this plant. Although I am starting into the latter part of my years, I am also just beginning to bloom...

My little horses don't care if I bloom, if the trees have personality or if it rains..
They only want their hay.

They are stinky little mud balls...
and I love them along with all my furry critters!


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Raising Caine

This is my grandson,Caine.
Any wonder why he is the love of my life???
I try to get up to Bedford and see him once a week, and as he's getting older, I will take him here to my farm for an overnighter once in awhile.

I love to get him out whenever possible. This was Tuesday, and it was cold, but we bundled up and drove to Liberty Park in Bedford to have a walk. I didn't know there would be ducks and geese. The ducks are looking for a handout, so they come right close. Caine was actually laughing out loud when they quacked! We didn't feed them, but they stayed close for a long while, and he was absolutly fascinated with them!

There is a walk through the forest there, that has a paved path and a handrail. It is an exercise trail, but we were happy to swish through the leaves. I like Caine to experience nature, I like him to feel grass on his feet, and this was a good time for him to check out leaves. I filled his tray on his stroller with leaves, and gave him a pretty yellow supple leaf, that he did what all 9 month olds do. Put it in his mouth.....

Didn't taste so good....

He's learned the 'raspberry'....

His bibb says.."A little dirt never hurt!" Makes sense to me!
I let him experience the leaf tasting and touching and I intend to make sure he loves being outdoors as much as I do. Well, maybe he'll decide he doesn't like it, but he will be able to make a choice with some first hand knowledge!
And speaking of hands, check out the size of his mitt's!!! He sure takes after his Grandpa!Gosh, I'm such a Grandma!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Oh deer


I have a tree camera.I love to see what shows up when I take it in and check it.
Sometimes I see the same deer in the back yard during the day and I can recognize them.
I feel like I know them.

These are the babies with their Mom that I have seen through the summer grazing at dusk with my miniature horses.
It is always such a thrill for me to watch them.

I heard my neighbor shot a spike horn. I think it is one of these babies.
I hate hunting season. I don't feel safe running my land with the dogs.
I hate seeing a deer hung. I am past all that. Yup. I used to hunt with my family up North.I can't kill animals anymore. I have become familiar with them. Watched them play.
I raised a deer from 3 days old until it got the call of the wild, when living in Texas. Shiloh was the name I gave him, a buck.
He would run through the sprinkler like a child. When he was scared, he would bleat like a sheep, and he would fold up on my lap and suck on my ear lobe. I bottle fed him. He had a personality, and a joy for life.
I can't hunt anymore, not since I have looked in their eyes. I have seen fear, and joy and recognition.
Watch the movie POWDER, about the albino boy.
I won't hunt anymore.


Sunday, November 2, 2008



I am being bugged.
Lady bugs have taken over.
This is one corner of one room.

Bob has declared war on the critters.
He falls asleep in his easy chair and gets whacked awake by the bugs bouncing off the ceiling fan onto his face!

To the shed he went.
Back he came with his work vacumn, and he rigged up a hose to reach the high ceiling easily.

Open war on the bugs.
He has done this two times already, and it needed it again today!

Is anyone else being bugged by the ladies?
I know they are good bugs to have, but come on!
Enough is enough!!!!


About Me

My photo
union hall, S.W.Virginia, United States
Newly retired from Franklin County Public Schools.Prior to that I was a cosmetologist for several years.