Sparta , TN(Zone 7a)



The Front Porch has No Boundaries drawn in the sand, by the North and South or Any Place in Between.

Spring has sprung,and it is getting warmer in most places. However,it is still cold in some places, Everyone is welcome to keep the fireplace stoked and warm up. Until the cold wet weather is gone.

The Front Porch only has one Rule ! ~~~~ Be Kind and get along with other Folks round here !

Everyone is Welcome to come on in and chat. Pull up a chair and Make yourself at home.

Best Regards To All My Friends

The Sarge & Family

Thumbnail by Ret_Sgt_Yates
Sparta , TN(Zone 7a)

this is where we come from:


I hope everyone has made the Move easy and found us ok .

Sparta , TN(Zone 7a)

I thought I would show you a bit of camera magic that we have been working on for a while .


(forgot the caption)

This one is showing the Moon, Sun, lapping and a sea gull .
This message was edited Mar 25, 2011 11:25 AM

This message was edited Mar 25, 2011 11:26 AM

Thumbnail by Ret_Sgt_Yates
Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

Nice pictures!

I posted the nightly lamb report at
http://thegatheringplacehome.myfastforum.org/ftopic3999-0-asc-0.php Have to get over to the Oregon cube it, (there, wasn't that sneaky) and paste it there as well. I just went down to the barn to see what was new, the lambs were getting shots, ear tags and etc (for the boys). One ewe had retained her afterbirth, she got a shot of something to make her have contractions. 24 hours after delivery is considered to be retained. Infection can set in if it stays in too long. She'll be kept in the barn until it drops.

Sarge, you're right, it isn't so warm in some places. This one for instance, we have a brisk wind and snowflakes in the air. I'm glad spring has sprung for some of you. No porch sitting for me today, I'll just put another log on your fire and stand next to it, turning myself like meat on a rotisserie.

KC Metro area, MO(Zone 6a)

Spring has disappeared for awhile. 37 degrees right now and dropping. Expecting 3 to 5 inches of snow tomorrow, then again on Monday and Tuesday. And just as I was enjoying the warmth of spring finally!! Sheesh!! LOL. That's Missouri weather for you!! lol

(Zone 5a)

Sarge, your camera magic is beautiful!

Mary, I'll be over to read the next story!

DD raises the Boer meat goats. Sometimes you wonder how much trouble these animals have when there aren't any humans around to give them a little help.

Pepper, I haven't had a chance to enjoy any warm weather at allll! I just want to go out without a coat and see some sunshine. I've never seen such a sunless year. Last year we were awful cloudy too. It's spooky!

The jeep battery held a charge so I got a nice country ride yesterday. It felt so good to see the great outdoors!

Sparta , TN(Zone 7a)

Good Mornin My Friends,

Here in Tennessee Maw Nature has reminded us that she still knows best with the weather . She did give us plenty of time to get the ground turned under and tended along with a bit of seed started outside for the ones that need the cold shock to get them started. Then told the whole lot of us it was time for the rest of the winter season and her to finish up with what she had started (Maw Nature knows best) as we still have Dogwood Winter, Blackberry Winter, and Indian Winter to endure .

While they may not be extremely cold like the regular winter season we do hit the freezing / frost marks and it stays there for several days along with the rain, cold ,wet ,and damp weather the ground has a chance to “weather properly” for the planting season to come if one has done it correctly you should not have to work your backside off to fight the weeds yet , your veggies and other plants will be bountiful and produce plenty .

The “Camera Magic” is done with a very simple / non-expensive camera . And a bit of craft transparent color sheets and a few wooden rings that we made instead of buying the expensive lens filters for a high dollar camera. My camera is a digital one and has most of the “bells and whistles on it . However, it is less than a $100.00. most every one has a small one by now and enjoys shooting photos on vacation , you too can take it to the next level by pointing and shooting things you like .

The best part about digital cameras is that you are not wasting film like the old days and you can tweak them at home now . Even my girls like to point and shoot things with their lil cameras . Listed here http://cubits.org/PlaypenGraphics/thread/view/25042/ at a very close friends web site named Zany, she has several free photo software programs to help fine tune your pictures and there is several folks that are willing to chat with you about using the software if you need help I use several of them depending on what I want to do . However I like the “Picasa Photo Software” myself as it is very easy to use and does not alter your original photo at all , it makes its own copy of the photo for you to work with and lets you save it as a new photo.

If anyone needs help or wants more info just let me know I am always happy to help. And remember never be ashamed of your photos you take someone might think they are pure art and like them more than you . Just look at some of the very high end abstract art that sells for Millions of dollars .


Thank you for such a wonderful story about the lil lambs it seams as if one can go on the adventure with you each night as you describe your outings to look for them.


While my weather is cold and wet at this time it is not quite as bad as yours but I do not envious at all. Maw Nature is being nice to us here just below you and we are not getting any snow thankfully. I will agree with you Pepper I was so enjoying the warm weather of Spring just as it was! Lol . Even the my father-in -law was happy with it due to the fact he has been in FL for the winter months , it was a bit cool when he got here mid 60’s lol we were happy with that also but he was not to cold for him ya know . But as it started to warm up he was much happier until the cold snap hit. Welcome home Poppa , LOL.


Goats back in the day were used for more of a fence & pasture cleaners some were kept for milking and food use but not much interaction from humans . The ole sheep / goat dogs were used and are still are round here they stay with them all the time and are good guard dogs for the farm animals. With the weather still bad in many areas folks do have to be careful not to get sick from the weather changes from warm to cold snaps round this time of the year. I do wish you well soon.

Best Wishes My Friends

Sarge & Family

Thumbnail by Ret_Sgt_Yates
Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

No adventure last night as the sheep were taking the night off. Actually, according to the barn chart, they took the day off as well. And of course, the weather was pretty nice, no wind, rain, fog, snow, or hail. We had all of that earlier in the afternoon/evening. So, I rode the 4 wheeler around to check the corners in the pasture, looked at the business end of the ewes, admired the lambs in the barn, and came home early.

Menifee, CA(Zone 9a)

Hey Sarge,
I've been feeling kind of like you lately. Just can't drag myself out of bed and into the cold. Brrr!
I've been wanting to use picasa for making albums to share with friends, so may take you up on your
offer of help, Sarge.
I've been sorting through seeds while I've been in bed. Kind of messy, but DH is pretty understanding.
I just have to clean it up before bed time.
I've been working on the RU we'll be hosting out here, and I was behind on listing seeds. I still have to go make a new thread on the B.fly forum too, of the B.fly farm in Penang. I just don't have the energy to do all that today.
I have to agree with you about the difference between digital and film, Sarge. Digital makes it so much easier. Sweet photo, my Dad would have liked how you made your filter. : - )
Mary, I love your lambing stories and will try to find my way to the other site, although I get hopelessly lost over there. I'll try though. : - )
First, though, I'd better get something to eat. I'm trying really hard to remember to eat, especially since I lost more weight than I can afford on that trip to Malaysia. : - |
I miss you all! And even if I didn't mention everyone by name, it was good to read your posts. To see how you are doing in your part of the country. : - )
If it is any consolation, it's been raining off and on, mostly on, for more than a week. Which is the main reason I am in bed. Took sick last Sunday, standing out in the rain, directing folks to Gma Oak tree for my friend Shaun's Memorial Service. She had a great send off! : - )
Hoping all my friends out there are doing well! Sending you all positive thoughts and prayers.

KC Metro area, MO(Zone 6a)

We got snow but it didn't amount to much and didn't even last that long. Was supposed to last til midnight. lol

Nilwood, IL(Zone 5b)

Love that moon shot Sarge. Morning all. BEV

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

The (almost) nightly lamb report:


SW, sorry you are sick. LOL sorting seeds in bed. When you go to that other site, think of each cube as a separate little website, and when you want to go to another page within that cube, use the menu on the righthand side of the page, or your back button. Only click the banner at the top if you want to find another cube. It's really quite simple, just different from here. I'm computer challenged, and if I can, you can!

Gotta get dressed and go feed my horses who are making nose furrows in the snow trying to get nibbles of grass. Poor starving things!

Hanceville, AL(Zone 7a)

Sarge, don't forget persimmon winter!!! Luciee

Sparta , TN(Zone 7a)


persimmon winter for us is in the late fall to the first of winter . in this thread i was letting another DG member know about the later Spring / cold snap winters that we have in the Eastern United States http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1166846/

they too were puzzled about them and how the three came about.


Sparta , TN(Zone 7a)

Singing Wolf,

Welcome back ! Sorry you are still under the weather and not feeling well . Picasa is much more than just an album maker you can correct photos and do all kinds of things to them . One thing I too have to do is make myself eat even if it is small meals. I eat ten times a day due to my metabolism being so high I get the shakes all the time and have to eat a very high protein diet so my body does not cannibalize the mussels that I have and that is a constant fight for me Not a blessing .


I do hope your areas weather gets too see some sun shine soon and things thaw out as well .


Good to see you again and thank you about the moon photo being much of a night owl I love taking shots of the moon and night photos.


It is good to see you and the lambs had a brake after many nights.


Sparta , TN(Zone 7a)

Hello Folks,

Just to let you know , I am listed on Face Book some folks do have it and some don't.

My page is Closed to Everyone . However, you can send a request and let me know who you are by adding a message to it, & I will add you as a friend. you don't have too just letting folks know.

I have received request from DG Members and refused them because I did not recognize the name or the person, please let me know by a D-mail Pryor to the request so you are not refused friendship .

Best Regards


Nilwood, IL(Zone 5b)

I too like to take moon shots but am no a night owl.

Thumbnail by dragonfly62
(Zone 5a)

Sarge, I've heard of your other winters thru other threads. I think they're pretty neat. We just need the last hard freeze in late April to slide into Spring. I am glad my fruit trees are still dormant here. Too many times they blossom out and the last hard freeze finishes any chance of fruit for that year :o(

I'm not a very artistic person and will just enjoy the photo tweaking others do :o)

Sarge, I agree with the change in weather going with the change in health. I can feel cold wet weather and know it's full of sinus infection just waiting to get me. And it does, no matter how healthy I've been eating or how much I'd been exercising.

Now that's a beautiful midnight-blue moon shot!

Mary, it's nice to get a break from lambing. I think it's funny that they instinctively go to the fenceline to give birth. Do you have coyotes anywhere near? DH heard one about a half mile North of us the other morning. We used to hear them more often and then they kind of disappeared.

Singingwolf, no hurry on the butterflies. I haven't had time and felt guilty that I didn't even pop in to have a peek. I guess I wouldn't have found them yet, LOL!

I too had to list all my seeds this Spring. I gather more than I buy now, but I'm sure you have boxful!!

I've had a hard time making myself go outside too. The wind is like ice.

I'm sorry you got sick. I'm not suprised. A long plane ride takes a lot out of you and no, the rain did not help. I'm so sorry about your friend. I'm glad she had a great send off.

Since being on Prednesone and the Tamiflu, my appetite has been too good. I'm trying to get a lot of vegetables in and watch portions, but food tastes good right now!

Mary, I love the lambing stories! If I wake up in the middle of the night, especially in the Summer, I have to look out the windows or sit on the screened in porch and just listen to the night noises. Any excuse to wake up in the night is good for me. It's the best time to hear, or if I'm lucky, see an owl in the tree or on top of a pole.

Hi Luciee!

Sarge, are they done doing tests on you yet? How are the Government dealings over your health and benefits coming along?

Are you listed on Facebook as Sarge? I'll be under my own name, Sally Hazen, with my picture. I'm not on regular, but do try to keep up. I'll be glad to be your friend :o)

We took the truck for a longer ride yesterday, but I saw no wildlife or anything interesting to take pictures of. It's pathetic! We are promised plenty of sunshine today. It's been so cloudy and windy since the beginning of the year and we have not had any rain or snow since the last half inch weeks ago. Yep, I'm going to be using the pitcher pump this year!

Thumbnail by billyporter
(Zone 5a)

Good Morning BEV! Nice shot of the moon! I like day shots :o)

Sparta , TN(Zone 7a)

Good Monday Mornin Folks,

Our weather low temps started out in at 33 degrees this mornin and will only be at 50 degrees as a high for the day . At least the rain looks like it will be moving out early this week giving us a better week to look forward to and bring the temps up into the mid-60’s and then to the mid 70’s for the week to come . I hope everyone is having a good start to their week.


Nice moon picture at sunset, I like the colors you captured .


We have had a few odd snows in late march that curb the trees and bushes as well as anything that was planted . But that was a freak storm, the worst was in 1993 that I remember and one a few years ago but it was not that bad here thankfully .

As for being artistic with photos and taking them you can point and shot anything as a subject mater but like you I don’t do much of it any more as I use too . Except when the youngens want me to help them .

I am finished with test for a while or at least until the weather gets better me and cold weather don’t get along at all and recovery from test is slow so the last few are put off until it is very warm ! LOL . And I can get out side and get some sunshine , I am a sun shine person and that helps me get over / heal faster so to speak then staying cooped up in the house. I am in the last stages with my cases so to say I will be going before a judge sometime in the next year and a trip to Washington DC for the VA to have a Congressional Review due to the disability and my young age . This is the biggest issue with me not being approved right now , even with All the medical documentation and proof that I am unable to do much with help or everyday.

Yes I am listed as Sarge on FB , (I sent you a request)

Be Well Folks & enjoy your day!

Sarge & Family

(Zone 5a)

Sarge, I am usually so happy with the picture I took, I don't want to change it :o)

I am a sunshine person too. If it's out, I want to be too! But, it's easier to work outside on a cloudy day, so, as long as it's warm, I'll take both!

The red tape is disgusting. As you said, you've complied and the point is, you need the help now. Not a year from now. I sincerely hope you get what you need after being forced to wait for it. I for one salute you.

I shall accept your request :o) Thanks!

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

Good morning. The sun is out, a light wind from the north, last night's little bit of snow is almost all melted, and here is where to find your lamb update

Yes, we have a lot of coyotes. They are a big problem here. Ranchers loose many calves to them, and sometimes also the cow because if she is having trouble giving birth the coyotes see the opportunity and move in for an easy meal. It's gruesome. So the ranchers hire a heilicoper and hunt coyotes from the air. I hear coyotes singing nearly every night.

Wolves are moving in from Idaho, and last year in one night a pair of them killed 23 lambs at one ranch about 15 miles from here. Yes, we do know it was wolves, the state set up a camera, the wolves were photographed on a return visit. One of the pair was trapped and collared, released, tracked while it killed calves on an adjoining ranch and then came back to kill more lambs. Game wardens hunted down the pair and killed both of them. We expect a lot more wolf problems in the future. They have millions of acres of designated wilderness in the mountains between us and Idaho, but they won't stay there.

Menifee, CA(Zone 9a)

Thanks for the well wishes, everyone. Still cold and gray Monday here, should start warming up by mid-week according to the weather people.
MaryE, So sorry to hear about the wolf/coyote problem. The dept, of game & fish will move animals that are preying on livestock, but the wolves know their territory, and will come back if they can. It won't be long before they start issuing permits to hunt wolves again.
They are just being themselves, and their job in nature is take out the weak and the sick herd animals. Which angers a lot of people who are trying to make a living.
I don't have an answer, having experienced living with wolves, and having all my livestock wiped out by the coyotes, and on a few occasions by my own wolves. It's not a pretty sight. : - (
Wolves are a lot like cats, temprementally speakiing. They go where they want.
Get a good herd dog and keep the rifle full of rock salt cartridges.
Sarge, what kind of diet do they have you on? I've been trying on my own to figure out a high protein diet, (I've asked SIL the nutritionist for help, but it hasn't been forthcoming). I should be eating about 5 small meals a day, with lots of fruits, nuts, and veggies. I'm okay on the nuts, but am having trouble with the protein part. I can eat some fruits, but not anything citrus, I love veggies, especially raw veggies. I don't know if my metabolism is high, or if I'm just high strung, but I can't keep the weight on.
At least I'm holding even pretty much at 100 lbs. I'd like to get back up to at least 115, but am happy I don't weigh in at 92 lbs. now. Took a long time to get back up to 100 lbs.
I hope I'm getting better. I'm going to do a little work, and take long breaks. : - )
Pepper, glad that spring is finally approaching.
I will have to figure out Picasa. I know it's on the computer, but haven't fingured it out yet. Will wait until my brain fog isn't as bad.
Billyp, and Sarge. I haven't done much playing with my photos. The most I've ever done was to crop them or straighten them, if they are crooked. I am looking forward to playing with them. : - )
I'd rather be out in the garden than inside the house any day that is sunny. : - )
Hoping everyone is well. I for one am tired of being stuck in the house and can only imagine how hard it is for you folks back east with the cold snow. I don't do cold. : - )
I admire all of you who do survive the cold.
Well nothing will get done, unless I actually start working.

Nilwood, IL(Zone 5b)

Sarge, That is the sun on a cloudy morn in the East about 10am. Sorry about the mistake. We were talking about the moon. My bad.

KC Metro area, MO(Zone 6a)

Woke up to snow on the ground this morning but about an hour later it was mostly all melted off. lol. Supposed to have more snow tomorrow but I think that will be more up north. Fine by me!! lol.

I haven't done anything outside this spring because it's cold and the ground won't dry out. But I try to walk around on nice days and see what's popping up and getting ready to bloom. I'm waiting on my daffs, tulips and deutzias to bloom right now. Don't know when the deutzias will bloom for sure but I know it's a spring bloomer. I can't wait!! lol

(Zone 5a)

Mary, how neat to think of your sister doing cattle 60 miles away. More good stories and all happy endings! I'm sure enjoying them!

That's a pity about the coyote and wolves. I can imagine it is a gruesome death. It sounds like they kill more than they are going to eat. That has to be dealt with quickly. At least the State does something about it.

Singingwolf, I wish I had an answer too, but keeping the livestock in barns and safe, is not possible :o(

If you don't like, or can't eat enough meat, beans are a good protein and fiber source. Raw veggies are good, but cooked carrots are actually healthier and vitamins are more easily available to the body.

But, you do need the meat for muscle. Your metabolism must be high. Have you had your thyroid checked?

I'm doing cold less and less each year. I feel like such a whiner when it's 30* and the wind is like ice. It's not 0* or 5-*, but it's COLD!

Pepper, same weather here today. The temp is right on the edge of melting and the little snow shower is done, again. There is still grass and dirt showing thru. My flowers are also just growing slowly, but that's ok. It's not nice enough to enjoy them.

My neighbor has Deutzias and Carolina Allspice. Yum! I just go look at her shrubs and sniff the cinnamony smell when they bloom!

I do have the Flowering Current, Ribes odoratum and it smells good! I really have to get a lilac back!

In between answering and reading posts, I browned a roast for Swiss Steak in the crock pot. I have been so hungry for tomatos! I had juice and tomatoes left over from the canned one's I had opened, so it worked out well. I had a leftover onion and browned it and garlic in the meat grease and got all the browned bits out of the pan. YUM! Swiss Steak is always better as it ages. Today we'll finish the spagetti, and tomato casserole I made the other day. I told you I was hungry for tomato, LOL!

Menifee, CA(Zone 9a)

Hey billyp,
Nice to hear some suggestions from you. I love beans, and eat them often, much to the kids dismay. I try to eat meat, but some is hard to chew (I'm due for more dental work), and I refuse to eat most fish. Take the fish pills instead. Blaming my Mom for that one. I had to learn how to cook in self-defense. To be fair, Mom always tried to make her meals nutritious, and we always had our own kitchen garden, and even if she couldn't cook tasty food, she made some really good bread & butter pickles.
I have a hard time forcing myself to eat tomatoes because of Mom's nortorious tomato stew. She'd toss in whatever veggies she had, and the cheap ground beef and lots of her stewed tomatoes. I used to stick them in the fridge over night, and scrape off a layer of orange fat the next day. Yuck.
Then I find out have have all these food allergies. and I can eat a small amount of raw tomato, but not much. I usually get my vit. C from Rose Hips that I grow myself.
My problem is small meals at least 4 to 5 times a day. I usually eat a couple of handfuls of sunflower seeds or some kind of nut. (Don't like the flavored ones.) But it's hard to make just enough for one person, since DH and the kids can eat just about anything. Trying to stay away from processed foods, and I do eat salads, and fruits, but ever since that trip to Malaysia, I'm hungry! There is always half a PB & J or a PB & H sandwich.
You are so clever to pick up on the possible Thyroid connection, billyp. My SIL sent me some info on a few days ago about Fibromyalgia, which suggests that it may be a Thyroid problem, not in the Rheumatoid family of auto-immune diseases. I plan on forwarding the info to my Dr. before my next visit. The Dr. who wrote the article says that it's his belief after years both treating people with Fibro, and his lab work, that the current Thyroid tests may not be sensitive enough. That certain people may not be able to process the hormone (?) production or some receptor (?) is blocked. I don't pretend to understand all of it, but if you compare the symptoms of Fibro to those of Hypo Active Thyroidism, the symptoms are the same only there are more of them for the Thyroid condition. I'm definitely going to ask for another Thyroid Panel.
The Dr. also said that some people need more medicine than the standard dosages. Most Dr.'s won't want to give you more than what they deem is necessary. I'll keep ya posted and we'll see what happens.
Does anyone know anything about Australian Tree Frogs? I have a young friend that wants to build a terrarium to house them in. He want's to make it look like a jungle. It's only a 30 gallon tank though. I said I'd ask. : - )
Hoping everyone is doing fine. We finally got some sunshine, and I went and soaked up a bunch, and it makes me feel a whole lot better, although I still don't have any energy. Then again I seldom do this time of day.
Wanted to get this off before Jake came to pick up some plants for his terrarium. He's here and I'd best get moving.

(Zone 5a)

Singingwolf, I found I liked the tilapia, till I found it came from China. They've sent enough tainted things here I refuse to eat their food. So, I don't do fish either. I look at our rivers and really won't eat any fish my Dad catches! Farm raised catfish is about all I will eat. I take the fish pills too.

Poor you! My Mom was a good cook. Her Mom was terrible! How do you ruin macaroni and cheese? Don't drain it before you add the milk!! But she was Grandma and we ate it :o)

I love raw sunflower seeds and get almonds with no salt. Planters finally came out with lightly salted peanuts. I love peanuts!

I am betting it's your thyroid. We were a skinny family when I was a kid. Dad is a natural beanpole and my Mom was small and trim. But, we all had high metabolisms and burnt off all calories. When I quit smoking I packed on the weight and now I have the sluggish thyroid. Just diagnosed last year. I haven't lost a lot of weight like I was hoping, LOL, but I am now middle age and over menapause too.

It would be great to not have the fibromyalgia. My Mom thought she had it, but her body was just not healthy and she lost a lot of muscle mass from being to sick to get up and move. She did stay on her feet as long as possible. She was tough.

If you are diagnosed with thyroid it's also possible that the synthetics won't work for you. I can take them, but my Daughter can't. She's too sensitive and her levels are really erratic, so keep that in mind too.

I know nothing about frogs, LOL! I don't know if Tropicbreeze is still here at Dave's, but he lives there and works with crocs. If anyone would know it would be him. He is on the ''other'' place and writes a lot of articles.

Hope all is well with everyone! Have a great day! I'm hoping mine will warm up some :o)

Lambertville, NJ(Zone 6a)

Good morning!

I have spent the last week at work stuffing envelopes for a 3000 piece mailing. I get soooo bored doing this kind of work, that it makes me cranky. I need to be more challenged. We used to have someone come in and do these mailings, but due to cutbacks, it's my job now. Yuck!

Tonight is my class finally. I think I have everything ready. There are about 10 people attending so that is a nice size. As long as I don't get nervous and tongue tied, I'll do ok.

I was tested a few years ago for Thyroid problems. I did a little reading up on in and was amazed at all the problems a thyroid conditions could cause. Had an appointment on Monday night to go over recent bloodwork and my Cholesterol was 2 points higher than normal and blood glucose was at the highest end of normal. So, Dr. want's me to watch carbs and sweets and try to take off about 10 lbs.

Weather during the day today is nice, but tonight it's supposed to get windy and rainy. Over the next 3-4 days they are throwing that "S" word around too. YUCK! The greenhouse was 80 on Saturday and it was only a little above 40 outside. DGS thinks we should put a little pool in there since it is so warm, lol. Don't think it's quite big enough for that.

Ok, back to envelope stuffing. This should be done today. Yipee!

Have a great day everyone!

Menifee, CA(Zone 9a)

We used to have a mailing list for our customers. Got a bulk mail permit. Hated having to sort the cards by zip code, for mass mailings. You have my sympathy suzieq. It is a boring job.
I'm definitely going to ask about my thyroid levels. My cholesterol is great. Until Mom started drinking she was thin, and most of my sibs are too. Come to think of it now that YS's baby fat is gone, he's skinny too. ES has been drinking beer and we tease him about his pot belly. So he bought that trampoline. He does use it too.
Well good news for CA's. The Drought is officially over! Until next year anyway.
It's a nice warm, sunny day, and I have a lot to do out in the gh. I'll check in later if I can.
Have a great day, everyone!

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

Good morning, or afternoon, whatever you have. Wet here, not raining now but overcast. I looked at my vegie garden and decided where I will plant the onion sets this year. The garden didn't get rototilled last fall, and the clay is sticking to my boots and shovel, so no tilling is possible until we get a couple of dry weeks. My options are limited. However, I do have last year's potato patch which of course got dug up thoroughly when I harvested them, and next to that is the tomato area which had a black plastic cover on it all summer, so this is where I can plant early things. It's enough to get me started.

Have any of you been able to start vegies? I need to get my tomato plants going in the next day or two so that they'll be nice big plants to set outside after June 1. We could still have a frost after that, but I can cover them if I need to. With our short season it is hard to get them to ripen on the vines. Our nights are cool, so something that should mature in 60 days takes 80 or more. There are some things that are marginal at best here, winter squash for instance, I have a hard time getting them to ripen enough to taste good and be stored for several months of winter eating. Butternut is a "short" season variety, about 80 days they say, well, I've got news for them. I don't even try anything longer.

Sorry to hear about the fibro, thyroid and other metabolic problems. They are tricky to figure out, tricky to treat, and oh so much fun to have as life challenges!This morning I got into a low blood sugar episode when I was finishing my outside chores. I had eaten my usual breakfast, but I think I need to add an extra item of protein. It always leaves me feeling kinda funny for the rest of the day. I eat lots of little snacks of nuts, cheese, crackers with peanut butter, etc, and usually do ok.

The lamb report is in the usual place. Scroll back up the page to find the link if you're interested. It's in my March 28 post. I was going to copy and paste it here but will loose this post if I do. And of course, I was yakking away and didn't think about copying the link before I started to type. Planning? yeah, what's that?

What's everybody having for dinner/supper? I think it's going to be stir fry with shrimp, served over rice, and I need to get some beans out of my big bucket to soak for Thursday. I get the second part of the root canal done Thursday morning, and I think I will be wanting something nice and soft. Plus, Thursday (sometime in the afternoon) that produce truck will show up at the co-op which makes it tricky to cook anything that isn't in the crockpot. Yep, good plan.

Last week the truck was late, again, this time because it was broken down on the road. Fire in the engine compartment will do that. Must have just toasted some wires because he was only delayed about 3 hours. Could have been worse, like the truck I saw last fall that was completely burned, just metal with blackened oozing plastic residue, engine block, wheels, chassis, big problem for that driver. It was at the top of a mountain pass, and I'm guessing something got seriously overheated climbing a 6% grade for 6 miles. Not a good day!

KC Metro area, MO(Zone 6a)

No veggies started here. It won't quit raining or snowing and won't stay warm enough to dry stuff out. I need to get potatoes and onions out along with radishes and can't yet. Too wet.

Eating tacos for dinner. My dad and I were both late getting home so my mom couldn't make biscuits and gravy as planned. lol

6% grade? Yikes!!

Menifee, CA(Zone 9a)

Gosh Mary,
I forgot about the cheese I like to nibble on. I'm as bad as a mouse when it comes to cheese. Sounds like you've walked this road I'm on yourself.
I'm thinking of soaking some beans myself, for dinner tomorrow night. Kids won't like but I don't care. They'll eat it and they will like the corn bread. : - )
Gosh a root canal, Mary? Yup, something soft and filling, to eat is the right way to go. I had soup after mine, good old Campbell tomato soup with the crackers crumbled in and all nice and soft. Of course I make it with milk and a pat of real butter, and I usually add a couple of spices I like too.
As for dinner tonight, well I can smell something burning right now. I'm not too worried because it's ES's turn to cook. He's making chicken breasts. His and his brother's are getting some kind of Asian shake and bake, I'm hoping he uses the recipe I taught him to make from scratch for my chicken breast. He probably will. He knows that I like my Gma's recipe best. He's also going to make some Rice-a-roni (LOL), and some canned corn, oh and let's not forget the canned biscuits. The boys need to learn how to cook so I make them take turns. My ES is a much better cook. My youngest would just as soon go out for fast food.
I would love to plant some veggies, but am waiting (still) for DH to disc up the ground for me since he went and moved my garden. For that matter, I'd like some fresh fruit and veggies that I can eat. Our local Farmer's Market isn't until Sunday, but I plan on making it over there this weekend.
Finally found out where the closest Trader Joe's is. I'm going to make DH go with me so that he can see what kinds of foods we should be eating vs. the fast food & pre-processed stuff that he buys when he goes to the store for me.
It was a lovely day today, and even if I didn't get everything done that I wanted to, I am so grateful that I didn't hurt from the cold, and it was a lot easier to move.
Tomorrow though, I have to really bear down and get back to work.
A 6% grade? That's pretty steep all right. Hope there aren't any more problems with the truck.
ES just came in to report Dinner is almost Served. LOL! : - )
He is so funny. He is trying to help me out more. I should go give him a hug and tell him that I do appreciate it.
He just realized that there is no canned corn, so he came in and suggested mixed veggies. : - )
So I caught him and gave him a hug and a kiss and told him I do appreciate him cooking dinner, and isn't it fun trying to get every thing timed to get done at the same time. He's catching on though. : - )
Hope everyone is well, and that you'll get to start some veggies soon Mary.
Pepper, I'm going to see if I can talk ES into making veggie tacos for us on Friday. He learned from MIL, and she makes the best veggie tacos around. : - ) Good supper idea!

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

SW, I think it is great that you are teaching your kids to cook. It's becoming a lost art with all the fast foods and frozen stuff available. If most of today's kids had to make a meal from basic raw meats and vegies, they would starve. Talk about a helpless generation. Oh they can take pictures with their cell phone, post on fb and twitter, understand computers, but food? nope. I taught my boys the basics, and the high school had a cafe in their lunchroom, cool, huh? They got a few more skills there.

After they were 16, they got jobs as buss boys in a local restaurant, a high class place where the buss boys were almost waiters! They got 10% of the tips + one meal a day, everything from prime rib and steaks of every kind to some very fancy seafood and other stuff. They said they ate steaks and mistakes! They lined their stomach and pockets at the same time and my grocery bill went waaaaay down! And from there they went into the kitchen and really learned a lot. One even thought about going to chef school, but they both had a talent for building things, so the oldest now owns a housing construction company, the younger son has worked as a long haul and short haul truck driver, and for the past few years as lead carpenter on a construction crew.

I've got tomato and squash seeds soaking to speed germination, 4 packs are filled and wetted down, ready to put together tomorrow. I'm pushing spring!

Gotta hit the sack, lamb check at 1, have to be at the dentist at 8. Might sleep after that until it's time to go do the produce at the co-op.

(Zone 5a)

I hope I didn't offend with the China remark, but I'm upset about the toys they sell our kids with toxins in them.

Suzieq, stuffing envelopes would be sooo tedious, but it keeps your job.

You wil have gone thru your class now and I'll bet it went well!

Your Dr. appt is about like mine, but they never told me to take off weight. I am trying to do that anyway. I don't lke the glucose being on the high end.

Laughing. A pool! That would feel nice!

Singingwolf, I hope thyroid is your problem since it's an easy fix. I'd like to see you get your energy back!

Drought scares me. There are too many big deserts in the world. We don't need any more, LOL!

Mary, I'm always amazed at a person's short growing season. I think Alaska really opened my eyes to it. Ours is about 160 days. April 19th to Oct. 6th. Give or take.

We finally got to eat our Swiss Steak. I think it's the best I ever made! I threw in spices and will never be able to make it the same way twice.

Singingwolf, love the taking turns cooking! I love chicken!! The Sons are learning a valuable skill with cooking, not to mention the favorite recipes.

Mary, what a great opportunity your kids had being bus boys. It's very cool that they found their calling in building!

We have the Grandkids today as DD has a Dr. appt. Then we get them from school tomorrow and get groceries. They'll spend the night Friday and go home Saturday. I'm back to being busy!

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

The sun is just far enough north to be shining through my kitchen window, through the office doorway and on to my face! It may have been doing this for a few days but this is the first time I have been up so early in weeks. Not by choice, mind you, I have a 8am dental appointment. Ugh. Gotta be out of here in 20 min.

Lambertville, NJ(Zone 6a)

Billyp - no offense taken here. I agree. I won't even step up on that soapbox.

Mary - Good luck with your dentist appt.

SW - Good job teaching your kids to cook. Mine can cook, he just doesn't like to do it. He can make some killer mashed potatoes though. Yum!

Class went really well last night. 8 people showed up. Making the TP seed tape was a big hit. We also did some cuttings of a Euonymus shrub. I took a couple containers of my winter sown seedlings that were sprouted. No one had ever heard of winter sowing before. I think everyone had a good time.

Chilly and rainy hear today. They are still talking about possible snow overnight. All depends on which way the storm tracks.

Envelope stuffing is done! Yay! Going to be a good end of the week. Weather for the weekend is forecast in the mid 50's and sun.

Enjoy the rest of the day!

Menifee, CA(Zone 9a)

I hope your mouth isn't hurting. I can barely function at 8:00 am. I am so glad I no longer have kids in school.
Everyone should learn how to cook. ES even said he'd make tacos for Friday night. Of course I'll have to go to the store first, but it'll be worth it. : - )
I don't think anyone who can read has an excuse for not cooking. I was passed down my Gma's recipe's and Mom gave me her olde recipe books. Man oh man, if there's an EMP (electro-magnetic-pulse), and we loose our ability to use all of our modern conveniences, we'll survive. That book even tells you step by step the best ways to slaughter, and cut your beef, sheep, goats, chickens and even squab (pigeons). Wait I forgot rabbit and possum, but those were G.ma's recipe's.
Food just tastes better when it's made from scratch, and doesn't come out of a box or a can. The Olde Cook Book also has a whole section on canning your own veggies. Gma is buried in the family pressure cooker, and I won't buy one. Mom gave hers to my SIL. : - ) I really hate canning. Especially tomatoes. So I hope we never have an EMP. While I can do it, and have done it (well the chickens any way), I don't want to do it again.
Momma told me she got so mad one Sunday when the Preacher Man decided to come back to their house for dinner and she had to sacrifice one of her few chickens to feed him Sunday Supper! It wasn't the making of the food, that bothered her, it was loosing one of her laying hens. She did sell eggs for money to buy sewing needles and the little extras. I don't think she much liked that Preacher. Normally, she'd come home and feed the family something she'd made the day before and rest after church. She and G.pa were just scratching by, and raising five kids on nothing much but dirt is how Gma described it once.
After she moved to CA, I don't think Gma ever went back to church, and she did put her sewing skills to use. I think she kind of liked living in a city, instead of on the farm. We always laughed because my Gma would feed you if you showed up at her door. Didn't matter if you were invited or a door to door salesman, if you were invited in, she made sure to feed you. She said it was a southern hospitality thing.
G.pa wasn't wild about moving to the city, but after he broke his back, farming was too hard for him. So he took up truck driving. Gpa wasn't looked down on for being a half breed here. It paid better, and he still went on his hunting trips for deer. It occurs to me that Gma fed our bodies, but Gpa fed our hearts, and made us feel loved. He didn't talk much, but he was a shrewd observer. Either out in the woods, (he'd go hunting up in the Tehachapi's out here.) or watching the politicians on TV, ever so often he'd come out with a comment that was so on point. You'd kick yourself for not seeing it yourself. I really miss my Gpa. He was always my favorite teacher, and I would much rather be hanging out with him, than learning how to cook with G.ma.
Then again Gma was always trying to get me to wear shoes, and Gpa would laugh because I wouldn't leave 'em on. : - )
Aren't Grandparents wonderful!
Before I forget, congrats on surviving your first class as a teacher, I just knew you'd be fine, susieq. : - )
Glad all them envelopes is stuffed. I'd have been happier about those post cards if I'd been paid for the work. LOL! When you are your own boss, you get paid last or you go out of business quick!
It's been such a weird day. Saw a truck driving up the hill out back and didn't recognize the driver. So I meandered on over to see if she was lost. She wasn't, she had Jayme Snowfly, who is organizing the Pow Wow we'll be hosting in Nov. She had to get photos and some measurements for the city permit. While I was driving her around I found a bunch of Boy Scouts fixing the troll bridge, and further down by the kite eating tree, they were fixing the 2nd bridge over our little creek. : - )
I love the Boy Scouts. Those kids are great. Jayme talked to the adults about having the Scouts volunteer to help out at the Pow Wow. So I'm bragging about how much I appreciate our Scouts. They've been very good to us, and since our community loves our farm, it's considered a public service for them. As long as people are respectful, I've never had a problem with them coming out to visit Gma Oak or hike on the trails. We are truly blessed today. It was so nice and warm and sunny today. I hardly hurt at all.
I am bummed that my so called hard lacquer fingernail polish started peeling off this morning before I even did anything. I called my friend whose shop did the work and told her about it, and she's going to redo them on Sat.
Gee, the ones I got in Malaysia were good for the entire time I was gone, without any flaking or chips. So I'm glad that Bonnie is going to make it right. It's just awkward when you have to tell a friend or acquaintance that one of their employees did a bad job. She said that it was my nails having too much oil in them. Okay, but since everyone tells me that I need to moisturize more I don't believe it. Besides she'd washed them in soapy water, then she used nail polish remover to prep the nails, (I remember that part, because she hit the bit of skin I wore off yesterday morning and I screamed. That was worse than alcohol hitting an open wound!) I knew I should have worn a band aid, even though the wound is between my first and second knuckles, and I even told her to be careful of it. She was distracted and trying to figure out her schedule for Friday. Or should I say her kids schedule?
I'm just glad they are going to make it right. That is good business, and even though I felt bad about complaining, if it was my business I'd want to know, and I knew Bonnie wouldn't take it wrong. So we're good and it just occurred to me that I won't have to cook on Sat. either, because I will have just gotten my nails done, don't ya know! Giggling like a loon.
Drat, I swear I'm going to start charging my ES's best friend, for peanut butter. He eats all my peanut butter, he works at a grocery store, so I don't understand why he can't buy his own. Mine must taste better? LOL! Kids, ya got to love 'em.
billyp. it's on my list of things to talk to the Dr. about on my next visit. : - ) I'd like to have my energy back to, but I'd really like to have some muscles too.
I just haven't been able to build muscle. I miss my muscles, and don't like being flabby. You can be skinny and flabby you know. : - (
So let's all think on the bright side and I'll get those tests done, and we'll see what's up with the thyroid. : - )
Thanks for all the reassurance and prayers you've sent my way. Right back at ya all!
Been missing Sarge, hoping he is well.
Got to go check my beans and mix up a batch of cornbread for supper.

(Zone 5a)

Mary, LOL! Our house sits facing WNW. The Spring sun finally came thru the back door just right. I either have to get off the computer, or close the blinds. I would rather let the sun in and get off my duff!

Suzieq, thanks. I usually don't try to get ''worldly,'' but sometimes you just get mad.

What a good seminar! Congratulations!! I figured it would go well. When is your next one?

Singingwolf, tacos sound so good! We used to have them all the time and I got away from it. I even mixed up taco seasoning I found in one of the cooking magazines. It wasn't bad. I like heat with mine and it was mild. That's ok. That's what hot sauce is for. I always said I got more hungry for hot sauce than the taco!

We bought DD a grinder to do deer meat and I also ordered a juicer attatchment. I'm really looking forward to trying it with tomatoes, as I have to make juice this year. I found I love to can and I did get a pressure canner a couple years ago. I didn't trust Mom's old one, or my Grandma's even older one. This will last my lifetime!

You have the cookbooks I like! One sounds like the book I have. The Farm Journal Freezing and Canning Cookbook. 1963. It's got the basics of after the slaughter :o) I used it a lot before I got the Ball canning book.

I understand your Grandma and the Preacher completely. It's very hard to remember God will provide when you need what you have.

Grandparents are wonderful, even if they didn't do a lot with me, I remember when they did.

What a cool day you had! I don't remember you saying you were hosting a Pow Wow. Do you have to do anything special?

Boy Scouts ARE special and it's heartwarming to hear how much you are appreciated.

I am so glad you hardly hurt!!

The girl should have washed your nails properly. It's not your fault. It is awkward, but if there are no hard feelings and she gently tells her nail girl what might work better.... Win win for all.

ROTFL over the peanut butter!

Muscles. It is hard to get them back. I couldn't believe how much I lost just being sick for almost a month. I am back on the treadmill and walking around town, but using the weights are slower. I feel weak, yet I defeat myself by not lifting at all. I will tho. I just have to make time. I use 5#, but after a while will use the 10# They say heavier is better. I sure don't have to work as long at it and there's nothing wrong with that!!

I really hope it's the thyroid. Being on the pills have one drawback. You take them with a full glass of water, first thing, and can't eat for at least a half an hour. I do drink a cup of coffee right after. I figure they have to set the levels by my habits. I only have one cup, but the cream will absorb some of it. I also threw up one pill and missed one with the flu. So, my level might be a tad low. I'll find out next appointment.

We had a great day with the Grandkids yesterday. It was only 50*, but nice enough to be out without a hat, and coat if you were running in the sun. They ended up spending the night because DD's ultrasound was rescheduled for today. That worked for me! Good thing we just bought clothes to keep here :o)

Lambertville, NJ(Zone 6a)

Brrrr. Happy wet, snowy Friday! Snow is not sticking thankfully. Just cold, damp and yucky.

SW - I had to laugh at your son's friend eating your peanut butter. One time I was cooking some deer meat in a skillet, it was done and I shut it off for a few minutes to take my youngest to his job a couple miles up the road. When I came back, there were only a couple little pieces of meat left! My stepson and his friend thought we had already eaten and those were the leftovers. So, they helped themselves. I was ticked at the time because I had to find something else for dinner. We laugh about it now though. Boys and their endless appetites!

The Boy Scouts is a wonderful organization. DS was in it and now the 2 oldest DGS are in it. They both just did their pinewood derby.

Billyp - No more classes scheduled. I only did this one as part of our fund raising efforts for Church. I really don't have time to do another one this spring. I need my time for my own seedlings and garden.

Tomorrow I'm taking a class at Rutgers on grafting. Always fun to learn new things. I will actually be going from one side of the state to the other. Tomorrow evening we are going to Atlantic City to a rodeo. DS's friend asked us to go. Should be a fun night even though we will get home very late. It's about a 2 hour drive down.

I'm looking forward to a sunny, somewhat warm weekend. Hope you all have good weather also!

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