Oklahoma Summer Livin’

Swimming

Swimming

Alex & Ruby cooling off on the 108 degree heat index day this summer. This activity can last for hours and then they invade the kitchen for jell-o, popsicles, mandarin oranges, cheese sticks, etc.  This weekend Ruby had already ate two popsicles and wanted a third, to which I replied “No, we need to eat something different.” I watched her little face and could tell the wheels were turning, she said “Can I have a different popsicle?”  My reply was “Good try, Rub!”

We had a Hawaiian Culture Day with grass skirts, leis, hula, pineapple tidbits! I bought the outfits at the dollar store. We read about Hawaiian culture, ate pineapple and looked at Pineapple Plants. We watch Lilo & Stitch (a good movie for their age). 

Hawaiian Culture Day

Hawaiian Culture Day

We have had to replace the pool because Alex decided that she needed to drive her bicycle into the pool; poked a few holes. She learned a lesson. After a talk about inflatable pools and sharp objects, a new pool was purchased on sale and will be inflated today. I developed a method of keeping the pool relatively clean this summer, which I will share with you.

Pool Cleaning Process:

  1. they step in and out of the pool in a plastic wash pan to lessen grass, etc.
  2. once a week I pour about 5 cups of bleach into the water (a day when the pool will not be used)
  3. the next day I top off the pool with fresh water
  4. about every 3 weeks I empty water out and clean and fill with completely new water 
  5. I use the old water for my flowers and garden ( be careful about the bleach amount)

We have lots of cool fun filled hours with a $10 pool! They have a canvas folding chair to lay their towels on for drying off and lots of pool toys.

This weekend I covered one set of my iron patio chairs while I watched the girls swimming, so I was able to multi-task. I will share the process and finished product this week. I hope you and yours have had some fun enjoying the great outdoors this summer.

Vintage Tupperware & Harvesting

Harvesting Green Bell Peppers

Harvesting Green Bell Peppers

 My set of three “harvesting” items, a vintage Tupperware Cutting Board, a handled red garbage bowl and a washing bowl.  My garden is small so I developed a method for processing small amounts of produce. I first put a small amount of produce in the green bowl and fill it with water to wash the dirt off of the produce. The vintage tupperware piece is fantastic for chopping produce and pouring into small plastic freezer bags. The red garbage bowl is for the bits and pieces from chopping the produce and the contents go in the compost heap.

Diced Green Bell Pepper

Diced Green Bell Pepper

My sweetie doesn’t really like green peppers, therefore, I only use about 1/4 cup in various dishes like chili, spaghetti, taco filling, etc.  I pour about a 1/4 cup into a small freezer bag and seal it then put the freezer. When the batch is frozen I put the bags of green pepper into a larger plastic freezer bag. When I need some diced green pepper for a recipe, I just grab a small bag from the freezer. Easy!

A Finished Batch Ready for the Freezer

A Finished Batch Ready for the Freezer

I process several veggies this way, onions, other peppers and various squash (zucchini for bread, yellow for casseroles). Just adjust this process to fit your garden and family size and likes. A combo of green peppers, red peppers and onions could be processed into one Southwest Seasoning combo for stews, soups, etc. I will share my recipes for Zucchini Bread and Squash Casserole later this month.

Flowers Today

I chanced upon a favorite poem of mine today while reading and thought I would share it with all my readers (one). This poem kinda wraps up my thoughts and feelings about friends, flowers, funerals and America’s ritual of decorating graves. If decorating graves helps the loved ones accept and cope with their loss; then so be it, it is just not my belief. 

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Flowers Today

I would rather have one little rose

From the garden of a friend

Than to have the choicest flowers

When my stay on earth must end.

I would rather have one pleasant word

In kindness said to me

Than flattery when my heart is still,

And life has ceased to be.

I would rather have a loving smile

From friends I know are true

Than tears shed ’round my casket,

When this world I bid adieu.

Blossoms bring to me today,

Whether pink or white or red;

I’d rather have one blossom now

Than a truckload when I’m dead.

…………..Anonymous

 

This poem has a few other names, like “Please Don’t Wait” and “One Little Rose”.

Anyway, I just wanted to share this bit of written wealth. Enjoy!

Wee Furniture for the Wee Folks

I chanced upon an estate sale a few weeks ago, of course, my van took over and drove down the street to the sale. I have been looking for a small table for my grandbabies, so they could eat or craft or color at their level. All the table sets that I have seen either are too cheaply built or just not appealing or too pricey for my pocketbook. However, I found several pieces of furniture for the grandbabies at this sale!

  1. A very sturdy red round table, which I added the three vintage metal child size folding chairs I had already purchase at a yard sale last year. $8.00
  2. A 60s vintage wooden doll highchair. $5.00
  3. A 60s vintage white doll cradle. $5.00
  4. A 60’s vintage green mod chair. $2.00
  5. A vintage woven basket with lid. $1.00
Wee Folk Furniture

Wee Folk Furniture

 

Vintage Doll Cradle

Vintage Doll Cradle

Recently purchased a scrap of pink quilted material (.25 cents) which I will use to make a doll quilt for the cradle. I plan on making a tie-quilt mattress and a pillow, maybe using pink flannel.

Pink Quilted Scrap

Pink Quilted Scrap

I purchased 4 $1.00 coloring books and a plastic pencil case for crayons and markers to put into the woven basket.

Coloring Book & Crayons Storage Basket

Coloring Book & Crayons Storage Basket

 $21.00 bought quite a few treasures for the grandbabies! Compared to the price and quality of new children’s furniture that I could have purchased, these things were fantastic bargains. I know that many of you have thrifted pieces of child’s furniture, etc. and fashioned children’s play space so leave a comment with a link to the great ideas.

 

1960s Mod Chair

1960s Mod Chair

 

Old Junque Art Gardening

Hen & Chicks in Old Enamel Pot
Hen & Chicks in Old Enamel Pot

I love using old pieces of the past in my gardening. I often plant perennial succulents or annuals in old chipped enameled pieces. Be sure and punch a few holes in the bottom before planting or the rain can stand in the pots and cause rotting to occur. Sometimes you can use a big nail and hammer or use a drill with a sharp drill bit to punch holes, this depends upon the condition of the enameled pot.  These old enamel pots and pans can be found in flea markets, antique stores or yard sales. The price can range from WOW to very cheap (a $1 per pot), just shop for those bargains. Gardening Notes: 1. Keep moist in winter. 2. If the temperature drops 20 degrees or below put the pots in a protected place, like a garage or shed.

Perennial Succulent in Green/Beige Enamel Pot
Perennial Succulent in Green/Beige Enamel Pot

I look for unusual items to place in my landscape to add interest and detail. In my new butterfly garden  I put a vintage hand driven cultivator and a red and white enamel dish pan. The cultivator adds some ambiance from the past and provides for a trellis for the recent planted Passion Vine. The dish pan provides water for the birds and butterflies, it needs a unique rock or something for the butterflies to land on to drink.

Butterfly Garden with Cultivator and Dish Pan
Butterfly Garden with Cultivator and Dish Pan

Old rusty iron pieces have a special appeal to me, the bits and pieces remind me of days gone by when they were used by the farmer out in the field or by the farmers wife in the milk house. I have combined a rusty piece (milk separator??) with a vintage tin watering can; both pieces have drought resistant annuals planted in them because of the intense heat of Oklahoma Summers. The rusty planter displays bright pink rose moss and the tin watering can displays multi-colored periwinkles (vinca minor); both are heat and drought tolerant.

My Junque Art
My Junque Art

Old junque art pieces not only add interest to a garden but it also recycles odd bits and pieces that would otherwise end in the trash pile. Our small towns have an abundance of junque art in the yards and gardens. I love to drive around and look at all the ingenuity of fellow gardeners. What a great one day trip! Just go to small towns and look for junque art, take pictures and enjoy lunch at a restaurant with local cuisine. I might just have to take a day trip soon! I know that there are many of you out there that also have found unique pieces of junque art and have used the great finds in creative ways. Please comment and leave a link so we can all share in this joy of junking.

Rose Moss
Rose Moss
Multi-Color Periwinkle

Multi-Color Periwinkle

My Passion for Coffee and Starbucks!

While it is not my usual spendthrift self to spend $5.00 on a cup of coffee, I do love Starbucks! Occasionally, I treat myself to a $5.00 mixed cup of java of the gods, but usually it is just a venti cup of the regular joe. Right now I am sitting in the local Starbucks writing this post and enjoying a lemon tart (Can I hear an amen!) and a venti pikes peak blend. Huge corporations are mostly evil in my view of a perfect world, not all, however, Starbucks seems to be trying to buck the norm. One of the things Starbuck’s offer is big sacks of FREE coffee grounds, which by the way are great for your soil. I try to pick up a sack every week. The bags at my local Starbucks are located by the pick-up area in a bronze bucket. This is great recycling of what comes from the earth going back to the earth.

Lemon Tart

Lemon Tart

 On May 11, 2009, Starbucks announced a comprehensive summit to attain their goal of 100% recyclable of all their single-use cup by 2012 in all the communities where the stores are located. There are many other environmental aspects to Starbucks vision, visit their site:

BTW, Starbucks have not endorsed my blog or given me money to advertise for them. However, if someone from Starbucks reads this blog entry and wants to send a few coupons my way, that’s okay with me!  I am just trying to share a little of my passion for coffee!! Often when it is my turn to take and pick up Alex at her pre-school, which is twenty miles one way from my house, I spend a couple of hours at Starbucks on the computer. I use the Wi-Fi there to blog, write, answer email, ebaying, etc.
See everyone at Starbucks soon! Until then have a blessed week.

Love Those Great Old Classic Movies? I do!

You do not have to have Netflix to watch movies online, although, I do lub my Netflix! I watch many of the classic movies on two fantastic FREE sites.

http:/classiccinemaonline.com

This site has a huge number of every genre of movie, such as family, comedy, drama, and of course my two favorites, horror and sci-fi. I like both old and new sci-fi, however, I rarely like the newer horror movies. I think the newer horror movies take the genre it to a whole new level of sadistic evil horror. The older horror movies are great entertainment without all the gross dark nature of human beings. Wonder what that says for our society!?

Our reality is so scary that our nightmares have to be scarier. A great topic for a Ph.D Candidate’s thesis.

Anyhow, back to those great classics.

http://monsterpiecetheater.blogspot.com

This site shows many of the monster/alien oldies but goodies.

Last Friday night my husband and I were watching the new “The Day the Earth Stood Still”. During one scene, I said “Don’t they realize that our weapons wouldn’t hurt such an advance alien race weapons!”, my husband replied, “Yeah, didn’t they watch the 1950’s movie!”  We had a good laugh over that one!

Hope you enjoy the movies.