Friday, October 31, 2014

Bushes and the New Hedge Trimmer

I planted tiny bushes when we first moved in the house.
Tiny mostly because we are on almost solid rock so
digging down to allow for a large root ball was impossible.
Although many said that they would take forever to grow large,
it must be the magic spot for hostas and bushes because
they all grow like crazy with little or no maintenance.  
I rarely ever water them!

They go so tall that they blocked a great deal of
the view into the courtyard and left no room
between bushes and the porch to retrieve anything
that fell or rolled off the porch.
They filled out so well that they ended up a good deal
into the courtyard itself and became a worry in the 
heavy snow as the branches were weighted down.
I would have to occasionally brush off the snow
with a broom stick to keep the branches from breaking.

I mentioned to my Facebook friends that I think my husband it out to kill me.
I've been after him for years to fix up the porch and paint it again.
I think I'd have a heart attack if he ever finished it.
Every year I hear the same promise.
I've even gone so far as to ask friends!

Oh, is there anything I can do to help you?
Yes, paint my porch!

They look at me so oddly, I can't imagine why.
Although my neighbor said she WOULD come over and paint it!
Really, I'm just kidding, Tom can do this but if she wants 
to keep him company and bring over her famous
pineapple cookies, please do!!

As you can see, I can now reach all the little things that
fall behind the bushes and my husband has a huge space
for that ladder while he paints the columns!

It looks like it really might happen this year
(fingers crossed)
He has some boards to replace first which 
he is currently working on, until it unexpectedly
rained yesterday. So much for drying out the wood.

In the meantime, the burning bushes are all aflame!
I do need to trim these as well because the path to 
the hose bib is between two of them.  These seem
to do really well too and rarely ever get watered.
They get lots of sunlight and are against the white siding
so they stay warmer for awhile and really stand out 
in the fall when the leaves change.

When I walked out of the garage and saw the 
dead weed (wildflower) stalks, it really hit me that it's Fall.
We will have a frost this weekend and not much will be
left of coleus, hostas, garden stragglers or patio flowers.
I might just find another tiny pumpkin or two that trailed
out the woods though. I love a good pumpkin hunt!
The drawback is returning with those burrs that are like
little needles which pierce your clothing and poke at your skin.
My granddaughter decided to sled down the hill one year
and came back covered in hundreds of them which 
means I spent a lot of time picking, picking, and picking!

Inside it will still be summer while I babysit the orchid
which now has four open blooms.  There are two more
to go so I hope I can give it back while they are so pretty.

How's Fall treating you?
And Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Purina Farms- Haunted Hayloft

It was a very haunted weekend!

We visited Purina Farms on Friday 
and had a Pirate Adventure Saturday.
(select link to view separate post)

 My sister in law prepared an outdoor meal Saturday 
evening and my husband hooked up the trailer for an
 evening hayride up and down our road  Saturday night.
We hooted and howled as we passed the neighbor's bonfire
and on the return trip picked up a couple of hitch hikers
  wanting to tag along.  The poor neighbors at the bottom of
the road kept running up to their windows as we turned around
and headed back up the hill. They must have wondered
what the heck was happening!

We always take our annual trip to 
in Gray Summit, MO for their
VERY kid friendly Haunted Hayloft.

There are mazes, rope swings, a
"haunted house,"  movies,
magic shows, petting zoo,
dog trials and much more.

A highlight for us is the multi story Victorian cat mansion
 with a spiral staircase so you can view the
cats as they play or relax on the cat sized furniture.

This guy has the right idea.
Dogs with no shedding
and what a great diet.
These bones don't make him look fat at all!

What's a festival without festival food?
Taylor enjoys a corn dog on the patio.

My husband said you can save a bundle
at Christmas.  Just buy a sack of corn,
add some tractor equipment and the kids go wild!

We took a break at the movie theater that
spans the walk way between the main building
and the barn.  You can watch as you walk
or sit awhile and rest your feet while you
watch vintage cartoons on this curved screen.

The  patio hosts a center stage for magicians
or dog tricks, a relaxing snack or gathering
place to meet up with your friends.

It was a great evening with perfect weather!
 If you get a chance to visit Purina, you won't regret it.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Neighborhood Is Changing

Our neighborhood is changing.
Just when you find a place to put down roots
 so you can raise your children and grandchildren,
just when you think all is well, 
a bad element comes into town.

Now I'm all about diversity 
and kumbayaing with your fellow man.
I'm willing to try new things,
to open my mind to new ways of doing things
but then

 the pirates moved in next door.

Oh sure, at first it was all Yo Ho Ho Come Share Our Rum
  So we reached out and embraced them,
tried to celebrate their pirateness.

But I think I made a grave mistake!

We started noticing little things
that were just not right.
   You know how it is, you get that tingling feeling
like things are a little off but you just can't put your finger on it.

 I should have known.
This guy tried to warn me to RUN!!
 Really, what does he know,
he doesn't even have a leg to stand on.
So I shook it off.
For a while.

Then I began to have the feeling they were watching my booty.
HEY, get your mind out of the gutter ! Not THAT booty.

You all know I have a veritable fortune in dehydrated tomatoes.
And tomatoes are full of what??? Vitamin C
And what happens on a long sea journey?
YES, Scurvy !
And HOW do we prevent scurvy?
Right Again- with vitamin C.
Get the picture?  Booty!

It was about then that I really started feeling
  something was
Like I said, it's getting to be a rough neighborhood!
I have no idea what this guy did,
but whatever it was, I don't want to be next!

When I turned around, this guy was just hanging around 

right next to this "patch" in the asphalt.
Hmmmm, what sort of shape is that?

Ohhh, this sort of shape! 
TAYLOR, Run, Run, Run!


Decorations courtesy of my brother and sister in law.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

A Big Fish Story

I caught a fish in a wicker basket!
In the closet no less.

Now you must be wondering how someone 
catches a salt water fish in a fresh air closet.
Well, it was easy.

Way  back when, Dad went fishing in Florida. 
He loved to deep sea fish and always hoped I
would grow up to be a marine biologist.
After spending a couple of (expensive) deep sea fishing charters
with me laying down or hanging over the edge
about as green as seaweed, he came to the realization
it would probably not happen.

Well, mom said he caught this fish and really wanted 
to have it mounted.  It always hung in the family room
and inadvertently topped the Christmas tree during the holidays.
Tom and I are pictured here with my grandparents
sometime around 1974 - 1976 maybe?

It's a nice sized fish, coming in at about 24 inches.
 There are some condition issues but I still think it's pretty cool.

But back to how I caught it in the closet.
I was looking for a spare pillow when I opened the 
closet in Mom's back guest room.  There, 
sitting nose down in a wicker basket, was Dad's fish!
This was two houses and 40 years later.

I asked if I could take it home and without hesitation, Mom agreed.
I don't think the fish fits into her decor!
It will be perfect for me except my living room is pumpkin colored
and the fish will blend right in!
A Camo Fish!

No, I'll put it upstairs, maybe in the girl cave for now
but if the man cave gets fixed up some day,
it would be perfect there.

So, that's my Big Fish Story!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Blooming Again- Orchid flower 3

It is a blooming good time here in Robertsville.
Our little orchid visitor is really being a good guest,
gracing us with yet another bloom.
If all goes well, there are a few more blooms
yet to open, and the buds are growing daily.
The poor thing will be all tuckered out 
by the time I have to return it.

I don't know if it likes the diffused Northern light
that seeps into the dining room window - that
sits behind a nine foot deep porch.
Or does it like the well water?
I have no idea but something is right.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014


There is absolutely nothing I'd rather do 
than shop for my jewelry at Boll Weevil Pawn!
With a name like that, what more could you ask?

"Girls, he proposed!" she exclaimed with hearts sparkling in her eyes.
Ohhh, what a beautiful ring, did he get it at Jared?
"Oh no, right here at Boll Weevil Pawn!"  Isn't he sweet?

Just wait a cotton pick'n minute.
I know it's not about where he got it, or how much it is
but I don't know if I can get past associating my 
ring with Boll Weevils!

Perhaps they could have the reception at the French Quarter
All Adult Entertainment!  
This one killed me  (Don't look kids)  Strip Karaoke.

We were there during the Documentary Film Festival
that brought crowds to the downtown bath house district.
Beautiful buildings, most of which are restored.
Tall magnolias line the sidewalks where shoppers
can browse boutiques of all kinds and of course
the typical tourist attractions.

Attractions such as the Duck Tours!

No, not this kind of duck.

This sort of duck.
They tour the city and drive straight into the water
for a tour of the lake.  We have  followed them 
in town and if you open your windows you can also
enjoy the guided tour over the (quite loud) loud speaker.

It may sound like I am making fun of Hot Springs, AR.
Well, I am making fun of some of the signs but
it is a lovely town with a lot of history.
 Hike, ride or drive up the mountain road
(in the middle of town)
   and ride to the top of the tower for an amazing view.

If you ever have the chance, put it on your Places to Visit list .


Monday, October 20, 2014

Mr. Whiskers

He looked at me in disbelief, 
I could see it in his eyes, 
"Why are you here?"

It's my act of mercy.
My husband has been wonderful and he deserves
something special, over the top special.
So I agreed to eat at a fish place. 

When we visit my mom I like to eat at
On The Border  
because they have these absolutely wonderful
Mango Margaritas !!!!
Now, I'm not much of a drinker but these are SO tasty.

On day 2 I received a message from my husband
with a link to Mr. Whiskers so I thought it was a hint.
It's FISH!!
OK, some chicken but still meat.
I'm not a vegetarian, I eat a little meat.
Especially bacon.
But this is mostly meat and FISH.

I agreed so we set off for this little fish diner up the
road from Mom's house. I get up to the counter to order
and I stop in my tracks.  Fish, fish and more fish.

I tell the person taking the order that I need a minute.
I'm trying to figure out what I want that isn't meat.
Well, you saw the beginning of this post.

I selected Shrimp, which I do like
but which is so often poorly deveined that I get--
for lack of a better term--
all grossed out.

The plate arrives with six HUGE deveined shrimp,
two hushpuppies and fries.  I cautiously cut open the shrimp,
which are beautifully breaded, and I am amazed.
It's almost like lobster.
They are cooked perfectly.
And they taste good!
The hushpuppies are the best I have ever had!

Before we left I had to find the person who took
the order and tell him how wonderful the food is.
He broke out in a big smile.

We'll be back.

You can enjoy the menu at this link  Mr Whiskers

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Fall Garden Finds

While something ate my elderberry, all is not lost.
I have found some garden treasures, 
some hidden away and some in marvelous display.
This sweet little pumpkin developed on the vine
that trailed out into the woods.

Then I found this orange sized green ball.
An undeveloped pumpkin?

It's a watermelon from the vines I thought had died off.
Here it was hidden in the weeds.
I cut it open, obviously not good for eating,
but took a small taste just to see what might have been.
Delicious!  Maybe next year?

There are several other small pumpkins that 
I doubt will turn orange but I'll bring them in
soon, just in case.  If nothing else, they will
make fine decorations.

Another little treasure.

We had cool temperatures,
hot temperatures, then
cool and wet temperatures.
Nature couldn't make up its mind,
so typically St Louis!
I have roses reblooming

at the same time the burning bushes are beginning to flame

Bees are flocking to the honeysuckle that 
decided to bloom again as well.

While the nearby mums start to open.

Of course you all have seen my short,
late season beans.

And the crazy potatoes that started to grow.

I wonder what could be next?

Sunday, October 12, 2014

They Ate My Elderberry- And That's Not All

They ate my elderberry!
Just the other day it was covered with leaves.
My husband reminded me it's about time for leaves to fall,
but that doesn't explain the footprints
or should I say hoof prints
in the damp ground!

They didn't stop there.
This patch of late green beans may look OK from a distance.

I might even be getting a healthy amount of beans,
considering I planted them a month late, well at least a month late.

But take a good look.
See all the snapped off vines?
That's what they did all summer long up at the big garden.
Now they found the little one. 

I think the potatoes are confused.
I was just about to dig them all up
and they started growing again!
It must have been a spell where it was
cool, hot, cool and wet.
I'll see what happens, maybe I'll just leave
them and get them later.

In the meantime,
Deer Beware!