Visions of the Waning Fall

“Exotic Tree” – Paul Militaru Photography



“Fir Tree” – Paul Militaru Photography



“Magic of Colors” – Paul Militaru Photography



“Tree Listens to You” – Paul Militaru Photography



“Willows” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Winter is Here

In about 45 minutes my husband and I will go to Lunch Bunch – our long time, every-possible-Friday lunch with good friends. We’ve been doing this for years and I really miss it if we don’t go for some reason.

It’s 21 degrees F out there right now. I’m not even sure if I should just leave my lettuce covered up with a sheet until it gets above freezing or not. The high is supposed to be 42, I think. This may be a moot point, since my sweet lettuce plants may have croaked last night – sheet or not sheet. When it gets this cold, it’s beyond the frost or light freeze stage. If it’s gone, I’ll be a bit sad, but we’ve had a really nice crop this year and I shouldn’t be over-greedy. I’m looking forward to the spring when – hopefully – I’ll have some robust, healthy plants grown in my greenhouse ready to go into the garden.

I’ll see what the temperature is when we get back from lunch and errands and then make the decision whether to uncover the plants today or not.  I’m looking forward to seeing what mischief I can get into the rest of the day.

Stay warm and dry!


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New Way of Walking

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Towel Critters – Take 15

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Thread Art – Take 6

Lace Portrait by Pierre




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“Dance of the Leaves”

“Dance of the Leaves” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Albert Einstein via sungazing

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We’ve had two pit bulls and they’ve been the best pets, so when I see a cute pic of a pit, I just melt into a puddle.

We bought quilted “coats” for our pit, Bambi, and Molly a couple of years ago. They look cute, but the dogs didn’t seem to like them much, even though they weren’t restrictive in any way. Amber is finally not panting when she comes in. This seems to be the weather she loves. They go out as many times as they want during the day. At night they sleep in the utility room – Amber on one side of the gate and Molly on the other – so both can rest.

It got down to 29 degrees F last night/this morning. I had the lettuce covered with a sheet, but it was looking a bit stressed when I uncovered it this morning. The high is supposed to be 38 today, so I’m hoping that the sun will make the difference in keeping the poor lettuce going.  I’ll look at it this afternoon to see if I can harvest some of it today.

I had a glorious massage this morning!  I bundled up in a new jacket (one that is quilted, but very light and warm) plus a new white knitted hat with a pom pom on top.  My wonderful massage therapist is a friend, as well as therapist, so we exchange gifts at Christmas time. She gave us a beautiful assortment of nuts (since we can eat that with our low carb lifestyle) plus a gift certificate to the restaurant we go to each week for Lunch Bunch!

I’m very lucky to have such a kind, caring friend who is able to find sore places I didn’t even realize I had and make them go away. I look forward to my massage all month, knowing that I’ll feel pampered and wonderful – ready to tackle what life has to offer.

Have a fun, warm day!




Filed under Amazing Animals, Family, Mother Nature

Amber at 9 Months

Amber is 9 months old today. “The Baby,’ our yellow labrador retriever, weighs 81 lbs and is the proverbial ‘bull-in-a-china-shop’ lumbering through the house, running over sweet Molly (our cocker spaniel/schnauzer cross) regularly.

Amber is learning to respect Molly – at least somewhat – especially when Molly has decided she likes one of the toys. Molly doesn’t want to play with it or chew on it. She wants to guard it. Ferociously. When anyone comes close, she growls. I will put up with this for a bit because I’m pleased she is no longer trying to be invisible in her own home, but a little bit goes a long way. I’ve actually had to swat Molly with a newspaper when she snapped at ME about the toy.

Amber has learned a lot and has become a real member of the family now. She minds pretty well – particularly when she knows we have the shock collar remote in hand. We hardly ever have to even make the warning sound anymore, much less shock her. She anticipates us on many things now, so we don’t even need to give the command.

We’re pleased at the amount of words she knows: NO, OUT, DOWN, SIT, COME, NO, TREAT, BALL, CAR, STICK, NO, AMBER, OKAY, PLACE, GOOD DOG, NO!... :0)

She sits and waits for us to put her food bowl down and say, “OKAY” before she eats. She goes to her PLACE when we’re bringing plates into the living room. She comes and stares at us, saying, “whine, whine, ” when she wants to go out. (as she just did)  We’re trying to teach her to bark when she would like to come in.

She walks up my husband’s front as he sits in his recliner, wanting to cuddle. Our chairs are just a few feet apart in the living room. I look over at her when she’s playing ‘lap dog,’ and suddenly there is a gleam in her eye and she’s sitting up straight, rather than cuddling. This is the signal that she’s thinking of jumping from his chair and lap to mine. Since I really don’t like the idea of an 81 pound dog landing on my lap and chair, I leap out of my chair and go sit on the couch. She now takes that as an invitation to crawl up on the couch and sit beside me. We don’t allow her on the furniture, but in this case, I give in and give her a good cuddle.

She loves the cooler weather (it’s 36 degrees F out there right now), and since she readily comes at our call or the shock collar warning, we can let her out by herself to romp, sniff and otherwise be a real dog.

All of these good words about how much she’s learning go out the window with a sucking sound if someone comes to visit. She is so busy trying to get close to the visitor that she no longer sees or hears us. I can imagine what our friends think after meeting ‘the maniac.’  They probably think we don’t work with her at all. We are arranging play dates with other dogs, taking her with us in the car when we have a short list of errands, and having people over, but this will be a steep hill to climb.




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Fun Afternoon

I wish I could say the painting of the tree above is ‘mine,’ but it isn’t. Some talented person painted it, then someone else tagged it to put on pinterest. I don’t even know who the credit should go to. :0(

I’ve had a fun afternoon finishing painting presents for Christmas.

I love thinking of my friends as I paint, trying to do something I hope they’ll like. It fills me with the Christmas spirit – the joy of giving.

Tomorrow, when the paint is dry, I’ll wrap up the last of the presents for our good friends. I’ll give them to people based on if I’ll see them again before Christmas or not. I love a month where you’re deciding when you’ll try to make your friends happy with something you’ve bought or made especially for them. We should do this many times a year, I think…


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Towel Critters – Take 14



Topsy Turvy Diaper Cake via

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sungazing via cathy ruggiero

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Thread Art – Take 5




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Your Awwww for the Day – Take 7

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Beautiful Birds

“A Singer” – Paul Militaru Photography



“Black Swans” – Paul Militaru Photography



“Pigeons” – Paul Militaru Photography



“White Swans” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Are You Addicted Yet?

“Last Sunrise on the St. John River, Florida” – Mary Lou Lewis


As all things do, the vacation has come to an end. My sister-in-law will fly home this afternoon. This was a great send-off for her from the St. John River in Florida, and she generously allowed us to share.  I’m hoping I won’t go into withdrawal tomorrow when I don’t get to share a beautiful sunrise on the water with her. I could definitely become addicted to this.

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Precious Hours

Maya Angelou via via Lisa Bearnes Richey

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“End of Fall” – Paul Militaru Photography



“Stars on Water” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Thread Art – Take 4

“Iris-and-Snowflake”-quilt-Jim Gatling’s Crazy Creative

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Wonderful Wooden Boxes – Take 1

I try to stay out of stores that sell office supplies, art supplies, baskets, or wooden boxes of any kind. I don’t know what it is about these things that make my mouth water. I want them!  So, I try to confine myself to drooling over them via the net, where I can ‘ooh’ and ‘ahh’ to my heart’s content without knowing the prices or even considering actually trying to buy them.  I know that in these cases, enough is never enough – I can always find an excuse to add more….



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A Beautiful Greeting

“Sunrise on the St. John River” – Mary Lou Lewis

I think – if I had the gift of this most mornings – I might actually get up early enough to wave at it and give it an appreciative smile. As it is, my sister-in-law (and good friend) is enjoying it for all of us and is generous enough to share.

Good morning!

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Good Mantra

The Master Shift via Bethany Kerr

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Thread Art – Take 3

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Common Sense

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I Love Your Face! – Take 10

Some faces are truly beautiful – showing lives fully lived, adversities overcome, love and character shining through.  I would love to be able to meet these people and would love to see them smile. I


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“Sunrise on the St. John River”

“Sunrise on the St. John River” – Mary Lou Lewis


My sister-in-law is enjoying a vacation on the St. John River in Florida. She took this picture this morning and shared it with me. The beauty of this takes my breath away!

Our weather here in Greenwood, Arkansas is still nice, as far as during the day goes, with highs in the low 70’s!

This evening, though, storms are forecast for the whole area, with a strong cold front, plunging our temperatures for the rest of the week. I’ll need to start covering my lettuce tonight and will continue for the rest of the week. I’m hoping it will live through this cold snap, as our temperatures are sometimes quite mild in December and even into January.

I hope you have a wonderful day.

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I Love Mums

“Chrysanthemums 1” – Paul Militaru Photography




“Chrysanthemums 2” – Paul Militaru Photography




“Purple Chrysanthemums” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Thread Art – Take 2

Elephant Quilt-Darlene Determan-Sassafras Lane Designs –



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We built a composter a couple of years ago. I finally made a good batch of compost this year!

I say this as if I won the lottery because even though I followed directions I found in books and on the net, I ended up with the wrong combination of ingredients and ended up dumping it out (holding my nose) and washing out the inside of the composter with a hose.

I’ve finally learned to add a whole lot more yard waste and much less food waste in order to come up with something that I hope will be a good addition to the composts for the square foot garden.

I cleaned it out today because I don’t want to leave it in there for the winter. In the picture above, you can see that we used a plastic food container type barrel we bought from the hardware store. We poured a concrete pad for the composter to sit on, with stakes coming up out of the concrete. We pounded the legs onto the stakes to make a good, sturdy support for the composter. We cut the opening in the front, making it so it opens wide enough to put new items in easily or use the tool my husband made for scooping the compost out. The barrel is on rollers. We attached handles on three spots around the barrel so you can pull the barrel, rolling it over and mixing the ingredients inside. This way you can be sure everything is mixed well.

This is the tool my husband made. It’s rounded to conform to the inside of the barrel, making emptying it really easy. It has a rubber grip, and the tool is plenty long enough to reach all areas on the inside of the barrel. The tool “lives’ on its side beside the composter.

You can see one of the three handles on the top of the composter. The metal ‘wand’ keeps the latches shut and the door firmly closed. My husband made the handle for it on the mill. The end slides through the parts of the latches, or pulls out if you’re opening it up. The end also helps pry the ends of the latches up.

After cleaning out the composter today, the trash can under it is a little over 1/3 full. We can mix up Mel’s Mix behind the shop, and then wheelbarrow some out to add our own compost to the mix next spring.

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Filed under Lewis projects, Square Foot Gardening - Raised Beds

Ready for Winter?

We’re pretty much ready for winter now.

I finished mulching the flower planters yesterday – finally.

We cleaned out two square planters in order to plant new Rio Samba rose bushes in the spring. We converted two brick planters to be square foot planters for tomatoes, so four of our brick planters didn’t need mulch. The other 10 did. I feel good that things are cleaned out and protected now.

I dug up the elephant ear plant, potted it, and put it in the greenhouse.


Same for the Purple Passion plant. (I put two starter plants in water beside the big one. It would be fun if I could get those to grow. )

The jugs of water are an attempt to keep the plants warm in the greenhouse during the winter. I’m hoping the water will warm up during the day and keep the plants warm at night.

The Bibb lettuce is still doing well in my square foot garden.


Here is the Simpson lettuce. Both are in the same raised bed box, so when we have a freeze coming, I just have to cover one box with a sheet and clothespins. I’m hoping I can keep these alive for at least another month, if not more, depending on Mother Nature.

I’ve started two celery plants in pots on the window sill. I’ve never tried this before, so it should be fun.


This tomato plant is also on the window sill. I’m hoping I can keep it alive for the winter and replant it in the spring. Fingers crossed!

I still need to clean out the plants on the deck, but these are much easier to handle. They can wait for another day.

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Filed under DIET!, Gardening, Healthy Eating, Mother Nature, Square Foot Gardening - Raised Beds