Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year

Taking a moment, this morning, before 2014 sets in to reflect upon life this past year.  

I hope you all remember those moments of beauty......

and those moments of rust.  

Those times of surprise when you walked out the front door.  

I hope you recall your own moments of sheer grace in those unexpected times of life.  

And, mostly, I hope you appreciate the everyday circumstances of your own life.  For it really is the enjoyment of the small things that makes for a life well lived.  

Wishing all of you out there the very best of 2014.  Thank you for taking time out of your day to read about my humble, farmy kind of life.  

Happy New Year!!!!!  

Sunday, December 29, 2013

O' To Be a Squirrel

"If I were a squirrel, this is where I would live."  

Words of my husband....

Last weekend, while we were enjoying the sublime Florida climate at my parent's house, we took a walk at a local nature trail.  

I was hoping to see birds, but it was eerily quiet.  Instead we saw a few squirrels darting around the woods.  

My husband proclaimed the area, "squirrel heaven", and I suppose he was right.  

Food, freedom, and friends reign in the woods.  

"You can't be friends with a squirrel!  A squirrel is just a rat with a cuter outfit!"  

Sarah Jessica Parker  

Friday, December 27, 2013

Random Five Friday

Yet another old house in the Smalltownland vicinity.  Taken through the windshield, this shot certainly doesn't do it justice.  

I am not much of a sports fan, but I must admit that I like watching Highly Questionable, on ESPN2.  Love you Papi!  

For all you Rolling Stones fans out there, they have been nominated for a Grammy for best rock song 2013.  You can check out their work right here.  

Hesper, at Prairie Rose, gifted my with the most amazing set of tea, socks, and Badger Balm products to help me get through the winter.  

If you need something a bit more mellow than The Rolling Stones, then I suggest you check out this trio.  True talent!!  Thanks Dad for the link!

Linking up with Nancy......

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Thankful Thursday

Sir Bert, my brother's cat.

Thankful this week for time in Florida with my family, safe travels, and the ability to make an easy exchange because Santa didn't pay attention in the first place.....

I will be catching up with everyone in the next couple of days!  

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas

I have been out of the blog loop for a few days while I enjoyed some time with my family.  So much to be thankful for this year!  A recovering father, healthy children, and a farmy kind of life, round out my list.  Best wishes to you, and yours, for a very Merry Christmas.  

Friday, December 20, 2013

Random Five Friday

I did it.  I finally got a photo of the life-sized plastic snowman in the back of this gentleman's truck.  I have watched him drive around Smalltownland for a number of years and never snapped a picture.  Thanks go out to my daughter for taking this picture with my cell phone.  

Although this house is not in the warm climate that I often fantasize of, I could still see myself living in it. 

Our weather keeps making wild swings from toe numbing cold to approaching the seventy degree mark.  

I discussed The Nutcracker with my class this week and showed them the Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy.  Their faces were awestruck as she danced around the stage.  

These celebrities in classic works of art are worth a preview, as they will certainly give you a chuckle today.  

Linking up with Nancy today, who is back from her hiatus!  

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Thankful Thursday

A Christmas wish displayed on my Hoosier Cabinet.

Today I am thankful for Christmas Break!  (I mean really thankful.)  I am also thankful for time......time to read late into the night, time to spend with my family, and time for walks on the farmette.  

"Time you enjoy wasting, is not wasted time."  

Martha Troly-Curtin 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Wind is Chill

Heap on the wood!  
The wind is chill; 
But, let it whistle as it will, 
We'll keep our Christmas merry still. 

Sir Walter Scott  

Sunday, December 15, 2013


"Friendly cashiers and 
sweet overhead music, 
short check-out lines and 
uncrowded aisles" 

"These are a few of my favorite shopping things"

My apologies to Julie Andrews....

I did survive my shopping adventure.  Though I enjoy time with my daughter, shopping is not something I like to do anymore.  

Not for Christmas gifts, groceries, or any sort of thing.  

We did score this fine gingerbread house kit and my daughter spent some time putting her artistic stamp on it.  
Now onward with gift wrapping, Christmas card mailing, caroling, family dinners, exchanging of gifts, etc......

I am tired already.  

Friday, December 13, 2013

Random Five Friday

This is a frosty view on my way to work.  Just a couple of minutes from my old farmhouse, it proves to me how lucky I am to live in the country. 

Southwestern Vegetable Soup was for supper this past week.  If you like Chili's version, then you will like this one.  

Gift ideas for the book lovers on your list right here.

Or, perhaps the person on the gift receiving end would like this sugar chest instead.  I know I would....

Christmas shopping with my daughter this afternoon.  Y'all say a prayer for me......

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for English Pointers who pose for Christmas cards, wood stoves to keep out the chill, and hot, hot coffee. 

"Dogs are our link to paradise.  They don't know evil or jealousy or discontent.  To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring - it was peace."  

Milan Kundera 

Linking up with Madge today......

Rurality Blog Hop #43

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Jack Frost

Jack Frost used a heavy hand on Sunday, here at the farmette.  

A light, freezing rain coated everything in sight.  

Even the forgotten apple couldn't escape nature's icy touch.  

Though we awoke to ice, it didn't slow down too much activity around Smalltownland.  

As we progressed through the day the ice melted and rain washed it all away.  

"Life is only a flicker of melted ice."

Dejan Stojanovic 

Sunday, December 8, 2013

It Never Fails

There are times when my husband travels for business.  This has been going on since the dawn of time, so it is quite typical in our household.  


It never fails that when he leaves the state, something happens at the farmette.  Be it sick kids, runaway cows, dead car batteries, it never fails that something happens.  At this point I have just come to expect it.  

So, last week we had made it 'til Wednesday with no event of any kind.  Really, I had been waiting, essentially expecting, something to happen.  I was beginning to think I was off the hook.  

I woke up that morning and went in the kitchen to fetch my cup of coffee and I heard a noise.  A noise at the edge of the refrigerator that could only mean one thing....I had a mouse on a sticky pad.  

Victory was mine.  

But, then I heard another noise.  Something strange and hissing.  And, I took a second look.  The tube that feeds water into the ice maker was stuck on the mouse pad.  When I moved it off the pad water started spraying everywhere.  

That mouse had chewed a hole in the line.  

Although the mess was cleaned up in due time and I repaired the line when I came home from work, I learned one important thing.....

Mouse Karma is real.  

Friday, December 6, 2013

Random Five Friday

With this photo I am recalling the boiling hot times spent in the desert, all the while temperatures outside are  plummeting to the thirty degree mark.    Good Times!  

I teach 2nd grade and during my career I have had students call me, Mom, by mistake.  This week was the first time a student called me, Granny.  It was funny, mildly disturbing, and sweet all at the same time.  

Societies on the brink of extinction are the subject of Jimmy Nelson's photography.  His work can be viewed here.  

These Snickerdoodle Blondies will be making their debut at the farmette this weekend.  

Several of you have asked if we eat the wild game my son and husband bring home.  The answer is yes, as we don't feel right about wasting an animal that has been taken during a hunt.  I would like to tell you that I am an expert wild game chef, but maybe the rabbit pie didn't turn out quite as good as I had hoped.  

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Thankful Thursday

Thankful this Thursday for daughters who like to decorate Christmas trees, mousetraps, and unseasonably warm days. 

"Be thankful for what you have; you'll end up having more.  If you concentrate on what you don't have you will never, ever have enough."  

Oprah Winfrey 

Linking up today with Madge.....

Rurality Blog Hop #42

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Suzy Snowflake

This snowy shot, taken a couple of years ago near our farm, is something that just might happen here later this week.  

I am all for it.  

As long as it doesn't cancel school.  

This teacher can't be working come June.  Let's not get crazy.  

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Spirit of the Season

My vintage, aluminum, tabletop pom-pom Christmas tree.

The first of December is upon us, ladies and gentleman.  

Just how are you showing, and sharing your Christmas spirit?  I confess that the stress of the season often dilutes my spirit, but while on an errand this morning I spotted the gentleman with the most holiday spirit in this town.  

He drives around with a life-sized Frosty the Snowman in the back of his pick-up truck.  

Yes, he does.  

It is my quest, this season, to capture this on film.  Seeing him never fails to bring a smile to my face.  

"I wish we could put up some of the Christmas spirit in jars and open a jar of it every month."  

Harlan Miller 

Friday, November 29, 2013

Random Five Friday

My son, and his friend, on a successful pheasant hunt last weekend.  Though pheasant is not a native species to Kentucky, there are farms here where they are raised and hunted. 

Nancy, from A Rural Journal, is on an extended holiday break, but I still can't help myself from posting Random Five Friday.  

Love Border Collies?  Then, you will like this video clip with these sneaky canines.  

The new Girl Scout Thin Mint coffee creamer is my new favorite morning habit.  

I am not participating in any Black Friday shopping.  Just too crazy for me!  Shopping on Etsy is more my style.  

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

Thankful today for so many things.  Life is abundant, even when we think we need more.  Sending out my very best wishes for a happy, and blessed, Thanksgiving. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

It's About That Time

Thanksgiving is looming before me and yet another holiday tradition is right behind it.  

That's right....dragging out the holiday decor from the depths of the spooky closet, located underneath the staircase.  I think this storefront has the right idea.  Minimal, yet classic, all the while allowing the gas pump to take center stage. 

Gas pumps really rule my world here lately. 

"Christmas, children, is not a date.  It is a state of mind."   
Mary Ellen Chase  

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Share and Share Alike

A tiny, retreat cabin behind a home here in Smalltownland.

Living in a small town can be a funny thing.  On one hand it is great.  On the other hand  it can be odd.  

The other day it was just odd.  

My daughter and I had left school and stopped at a gas station on our way out to the farmette.  This gas station is more like a local hang out for folks who live in my area of the county.  It is not fancy by any means, but it provides gas, hot food, and the essentials of daily living.  Each morning, after the school bus run, the local bus drivers meet here for coffee and breakfast.  

I pulled up to a gas pump and went inside to prepay.  When I came back out a man, who had pulled up behind me, was filling two gas cans.....on my pump....with my funds!  

I think my mouth fell open when he said he didn't know I was using the pump.  


I went inside and told the owner, Gary, that the gentleman had started filling his gas cans.  He smiled and said it was okay and he would reset the pump.  

Gary is an Indian gentleman who owns said station.  I think we all know his real name is not Gary, but he takes pity on us country folks and makes it easy on us.  

All was well and I am glad to help a neighbor, but I can't share my gas.  

The End

Friday, November 22, 2013

Random Five Friday

It rather strikes me that the pumpkin in this shot doesn't look real.   Seriously, it is.....

These girls can SING!  Check out their A Cappella version of, "Royals".  

I made this to take to our pot-luck dinner at work today.  Just buy a container of chocolate frosting to use on top.  You can thank me later.  

Anyone have a book recommendation?  Anyone....

Blogger has been giving me trouble lately.  Not always able to access blogs on my list.  What's up with that?

Happy Friday!

Linking up with Nancy!  

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Thankful Thursday

Thankful this Thursday for for fields of random wildflowers, even if they are temporarily gone with the frost, an upcoming two-day work week, and hot coffee in the morning.  

Linking up today with Madge.....

Rurality Blog Hop #41

Now go forth and be thankful. 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Full Beaver Moon

This past weekend marked the Frost Moon.   

Also named the Full Beaver Moon because it arrives during the time beavers are preparing for winter.  

Also, traps can be set before swamps and wetlands begin to freeze.  

These photo were taken Monday morning, really as the moon was beginning to wane.  

"The moon is a loyal companion.  It never leaves, it is always there, steadfast, knowing us in our light and dark moments, changing forever just as we do.  Everyday it's a different version of itself.  Sometimes weak and wan, sometimes strong and full of light.  The moon understands what it means to be human.  Uncertain. Alone.  Cratered by imperfections."  

Tahereh Mafin, 
Shatter Me

Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Dream Is Free

Stated for all in my household to see, this announcement board hangs in my kitchen.  Sometimes it contains something silly and sometimes it is serious.  

Today it is serious.  

Often we have a dream, do we not?  I have plenty, but having the motivation to bring your dream to reality is another matter entirely.  

Growing up an Air Force Brat, I came here to Kentucky each summer to spend time with family.  Staying at my Grannie Lucille's farm made me want one of my own.  I can't say it was one particular thing that intrigued me.  Possibly, it was the whole lifestyle.  The quiet, the creek, the cows, and just maybe how different it was from my own life made it so desirable.    

And, so here I am, living on a farm in Kentucky.  

Not perfect, but always interesting.  

Tell me friends, what is your dream come to fruition?  

Friday, November 15, 2013

Random Five Friday

It seems the small lady of the flower bed needs some surgery before spring arrives.  

If you are interested in photography, check out this link.  The professional photographer is challenged to take photos with a toy camera in interesting situations.  

My daughter keeps changing my cell phone ring tone from Green Acres to the vintage Batman theme song.  Now it is Batman talking in my purse, "To the Bat Mobile!".  

Snow this week and looking toward a 75 degree day on Sunday, with storms!  .  Welcome to Kentucky!  

Inger left a comment inquiring about my dogs taking care of a mouse in the farmhouse.  Well, I do have a sassy Jack Russell Terrier, but she apparently has other things to do.....like relax in front of the wood stove. The Border Collie is too busy rolling in burrs.  And yes, I even had to clip some of them out of her long hair.  We both survived :) 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Thankful Thursday

Thankful this Thursday for old smokehouses, snowflakes, and three dogs who know better than to roll in cockle burrs.  Dog number four doesn't know better.....

Linking up with Madge today.....

Rurality Blog Hop #40

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Hedge Apples

 Take a moment and peer into this five-gallon bucket.  Full of hedge apples, it is the receptacle of the all natural pest repellent that the check out lady told my husband we needed for this old farmhouse.  

You see, as the colder months approach we always seem to get a mouse in the house.  My theory on this is.....there is never just one mouse.  When hedge apples were  suggested to my husband, he thought it a great idea!  Yes!  His twin brother's farm has an Osage Orange Tree with the apples on the ground.  Our son was dispatched to bring some home after school.  Some of you may know them as horse apples, monkey brains, or bodark.  

It is said that they repel insects, spiders, and mice.  You can eat the seeds, located in the center of the fruit.  I decided to place some around  this old farmhouse in strategic areas and some just for decoration.  I have used these before and confess that I picked them up behind our church while I was attending a family reunion.  

Obviously I was more interested in the hedge apples.  

The bark of the Osage Orange Tree was prized by Native Americans for bow making.  The tree was also used by FDR in his Great Plains Shelter Belt WPA Project in 1934.  

Merriweather Lewis even sent slips and cuttings of the tree to then President Thomas Jefferson.  

What do you know....a little history right here on the front porch.  

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Veteran's Day

Take a moment to think of all the veterans in your life.  Even if you don't have any, the work our servicemen and women do on a daily basis keep our country running as a land of freedom.  

In my own family, my father made a fine career out of the Air Force.   My husband served in the Army, as did his twin brother and their father.  My grandfather served in WWII, as did great-uncles.   

Thank a veteran and appreciate our active men and women in service for all they have done.  

"In the beginning of a change, the patriot is a scarce man, and brave, and hated and scorned.  When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot."  

Mark Twain 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Random Five Friday

This cabin, built shortly after the land was purchased in 1796, remains intact in our tiny hamlet of Smalltownland.  

Nancy is taking a hiatus from the Random Five Friday hostess duties, but I am addicted to the randomness of it all.  Thus, I shall press on!  

If you are tired of hearing, "What Does the Fox Say?", then just listen to the farmer......

I admit that I don't like pumpkin flavored anything.  I believe I am in the minority here.

Next week the weather forecast is calling for rain, some snow, and even a chance of ice.  It is way too early for this kind of nonsense.

Be well, my friends.....

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Thankful Thursday

Thankful this Thursday for old barns, healthy kids, and dogs that will sleep through the night.  

"Everyday I've got to be thankful that I'm alive, and you never know - the cliche is, I guess, you could get hit by a bus tomorrow, so you'd better be at peace with what you've got going at the moment."
Joseph Gordon Levitt

Linking up with Madge today.....

Rurality Blog Hop #39