Saturday, June 5

It was another beautiful morning with the sun rays streaming through the clouds. We headed to the porch with our second cup of coffee and I immediately went back in to grab my camera to try and capture the moment.

That moment happened to capture a hummingbird at the feeder. We’ve not had the amount of hummingbirds we typically have for some reason. I have heard others mention that their numbers were down as well. I wonder why.

As we drank our coffee and stared at the weed-filled garden rows we knew that tackling the weeds would be a priority today. While CountryBoy whipped up a breakfast of our girls’ eggs, local bacon and homemade toast with butter and homemade jelly I sowed some more radish seeds and finished hoeing the row of tomatoes I had started yesterday. After breakfast CountryBoy grabbed the hoe and started in on his rows of corn. He got two rows of corn done and the cucumber row before calling it quits. Meanwhile, I dug up and relocated another asparagus that had come up in the old bed, planted my green pepper plants as well as another partial row of lima beans and a whole row of sunflower seeds.

As I was working in the garden I had a flash of some of the gardeners and homesteaders I follow on Instagram and had to laugh. Many of them include photos of themselves in the Instagram squares and I have to say they look fabulous. I couldn’t help thinking that they must be staged because here I was looking the complete opposite. My hair, which had been wadded up in a bun, was coming undone and falling in my sweaty face with dirt all over me and my soggy shirt – I was a far cry from looking fabulous while working in the garden. I wonder how they do it, hahaha!

When we called it quits in the garden we split some wood CountryBoy had stacked by the wood shed. We now have about five days worth of wood in the wood shed. It’s a start!

We finished around 11:30 a.m. and it was now too hot to be working outside so we sat on the porch for a bit to cool off and to doctor a flesh wound on CountryBoy’s leg. A large piece of wood fell off the splitter and hit him on the leg just above his ankle leaving a nasty looking road rash and a few deep cuts. We cleaned it up and bandaged it.

After a relaxing afternoon I decided to get some exercise before jumping in the shower so I walked up to check the mail. I strolled through the garden and discovered several more of the first lima beans we planted weeks ago that have germinated. Yay! I’m really hoping to harvest a LOT of lima beans so that we can eat them fresh and still have plenty to put up for winter. Have you ever eaten fresh lima beans straight from the garden? I simply rinse them and cook them in a pan of water with a little bit of salt and that’s it. They will taste like a whole stick of butter was added while cooking. SO good! I proceeded along the driveway causing quite a raucous as I passed the chicken paddock. ‘Ol Popcorn, one of the roosters, was warning his girls that something was amiss. He quieted down when he saw it was just me. After I crossed our bridge I decided to walk along the creek bank by the peninsula. A rock caught my eye so as I tried to find a way to get through it without getting all caught up in poison ivy I discovered a rather large snapping turtle taking a siesta on the creek bank. After checking out the rock I decided to leave it where it was, said goodbye to the turtle then finished the trek to the mail box. There was nothing but junk but at least there were no bills.

Tonight we’re whipping up a special supper – baked potatoes and steamed crab legs. You can take the girl out of Florida but you can’t take the love of seafood away!

Sunday, June 6

This morning was quiet and relaxing. With morning chores done we sat on the front porch and drank our coffee listening to the birds singing their tunes. There were no dogs barking, no lawn mowers, and very few cars driving by. It was a drizzly morning which might explain the extra peace and quiet.

I took the time to tend to my fingernails before church. It was long overdue. I like the look and feel of my nails right after I’ve given them a little TLC but for some reason I still have to make myself make the time to do it. What can I say?!

After church it was time to go to work. The shelves of sheet sets were about empty and there was quite a pile of sheets waiting for me but since the laundry was caught up I was able to continuously iron and I was finished in three and a half hours.

Throughout the evening the thought would flit through my mind that I didn’t have to go in to work tomorrow and I would grin. I’ve not made any plans for the extra time at home. I’m going to just let the days unfold however I’m pretty sure it won’t take me long to get into a new routine and… there’s always something that needs to be done ’round here.

Monday, June 7

Even though I don’t have to go to work today there is no sleeping in. Promptly around 6:15 LizzieBell woke up and started a bout of coughing. I took her outside to do her business then put her back in bed. She coughed for a while then eventually settled down and went back to sleep. Meanwhile I got the coffee started, fed the cats, soaked LizzieBelle’s food and got her morning meds ready. After she eats she’ll have another coughing spell before settling down for a good long nap.

The day started out with no plans in particular other than doing laundry. While having coffee on the porch we talked about going to town and had started a list but by the time our guest checked out we decided we really didn’t want to go anywhere on this drizzly day. Perfectly fine by me. So instead, I finished the book I was reading, scrolled through Pinterest looking for inspiration while eating a bowl of popcorn then decided to wash and sterilize some jelly jars CountryBoy brought back from Arkansas where he was visiting his Mom at Thanksgiving. They’ve been sitting in a box in the greenhouse ever since. It was one of those projects that was on the back burner until necessity or time permitted. Well, time permits now, (wink). We ended up with two dozen jelly jars and two tall pint jars. There’s still a few quart jars and some oddball jars that I’ll tackle another day since we don’t really need them at the moment. Upon seeing them CountryBoy got a bag of blackberries out of the freezer to thaw. He’ll make the jelly and can it tomorrow while I’m in the former dining room turned bedroom and office working on page layout for the paper. It’s gonna be great working from home for a few weeks!

Speaking of berries, I spotted a black raspberry vine down by the creek the other day. I’m so excited! We had a mess of vines when we first moved here but they’ve been mowed over a few times too many and haven’t come back until this year. I’m going to place a tomato cage over it so that it doesn’t get mowed down. I’m hoping they will spread. Black raspberries – so good!

And speaking of back burner projects I probably have a lifetime of those lying ’round the house. I’ll tackle those bit by bit but I’m also wanting to start a new project. I don’t know just yet what that will be but two thoughts are flitting in and around my brain – making something to use up some of my fabric stash and the other is writing a book. At this point, they are just ideas. What type of fabric creation? I have no idea. What type of book? Again, I have no idea. I don’t have any clear direction on either project so I’m going to continue to mull them over until inspiration hits or the thought fizzles out.

Tuesday, June 8

Being able to be at home yesterday was pure joy. It was the kind of day that I had anticipated enjoying since the day we moved in. However, it took six years to come to fruition. The first year we were here we tackled one major renovation project after another – both in the ‘ol farmhouse as well as the grounds. The second year, as funds were getting low from all the projects I started working part time at the B&B to bring in a little extra money. The third year I added another part time job at the newspaper. The major projects slowed down but there was still the fact that there was always something that needed fixed, improved, or added on ’round here. The fifth year we built the cabin and listed it with Airbnb. With the cabin doing far better than we had ever anticipated the time was right to slow down a bit and yesterday, I slowed down and enjoyed the fruits of our labor from the past six years. It was wonderful!

This morning I logged into my work computer a half hour early even after enjoying my two cups of coffee, watering the house plants, brewing some iced tea, and gulping down a slice of toasted artisan bread with crunchy peanut butter and a glass of orange juice. It was a smooth morning and we had the approval from the printer that our pages were good by 2 o’clock.

While I worked CountryBoy had his own work to do – finishing up the cabin for tonight’s guest; mowing the lawn at the cabin; washing the side-by-side; and making a batch of blackberry jelly. He’s now napping on the couch!

Wednesday, June 9

It’s been a non-stop day. CountryBoy dropped me off at the B&B a few minutes before 8:00. We left early to avoid the road closure that began at 8:00. The state road department is repairing a section of road that has shifted and they’re to the point where they need to close both lanes to get the work done so from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. no traffic can get through. Since we are about six miles from the B&B and the road closure is about 2 miles from the B&B that means that if I don’t get through before 8 o’clock then I have to take the long way around which is about triple the miles and triple the time to get there. With gas at almost $3 a gallon, I’ll get going a bit earlier and stay at work until after 2 until the road work is complete.

CountryBoy and LizzieBelle picked me up around 3:30 and we headed to town. We stopped for a bite to eat then we went to three different stores to get the few things we needed before heading home. It was almost 8 o’clock before we were ready to sit down and relax. The day FLEW by!

Thursday, June 10

Today was one of those hot and humid days that didn’t know if it wanted to rain or have the sun shine brightly. Nevertheless, we managed to get a few things done. One of the items we picked up in town yesterday were new gutters for the back of the house. The old ones leaked like a sieve and had become wonky after the ice storm earlier in the year. In a matter of a few hours CountryBoy had the old ones off, the new ones on and he moved the rain barrel from the front corner of the house to the back…

I have to say, it all looks much better. Having the rain barrel at the back of the house rather than right outside the greenhouse/sunroom door will add a few more steps when watering plants but it looks so much better as far as curb appeal.

Speaking of curb appeal, I have GOT to re-do the walkway. It’s a mess. The gravel has become overrun with weeds and I didn’t space the pavers very well. I thought I had spaced them for a normal stride but I find myself taking odd, uncomfortable steps when trying to walk on them. As I get rid of the weeds I’ll move the pavers around and hopefully I can get them spaced out a little better.

I spent the day piddling. I filled the bird feeders; refreshed the hummingbird feeder with new nectar; got a few things out of the greenhouse/sunroom/catch-all room and put them where they belong; repotted the basil and cilantro I started from seeds I had saved last year; washed the cabin sheets & towels; organized my stash of essential oils; checked the garden & pulled some weeds; assisted with hanging a section of the new gutters; and in between I crocheted a few rows of a dish cloth here and there.

I’ve been pondering the two previously mentioned projects and I still don’t have a clear direction on either. Maybe after I chip away at all the other projects that have been on the back burner for the last couple of years the direction will become clear. At any rate, I certainly have enough to keep me as busy as I want to be. For now, there’s a whole lot of relaxing going on in between projects and piddling!

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The garden is showing some promise…

Just about every seed we put in the ground has germinated and the ever-present weeds are doing their best to take back control. Weeds are a never-ending battle. However, my tomato babies are doing well. There are even a few over-achievers that are already blooming…

Even though everything is doing well there’s still a ways to go before harvest and anything could happen – weather, pests, wildlife – so Lord willin’ and the creek don’t rise the garden will continue to thrive and we’ll have a good harvest.

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I know Summer is just around the corner when the Orange Day Lilies are opening up…

It won’t be long before we’re wishing for cooler weather. Isn’t it funny that during the Winter we want to be warm and during the Summer we want to be cool. What’s up with that?! A happy medium sure would be nice!

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The day has finally relented to rain at the 5 o’clock hour. That’s OK. Short of locking the girls up for the night the evening chores are already done.

Friday, June 11

We had a gully-washer of a rain during the night which washed out our driveway and the road to the cabin. Before his second cup of coffee CountryBoy hopped on the tractor to grade the roads while there was a break in the rain. After he finally finished his coffee he got the cabin ready for today’s guests then worked on the rain gutters some more and installed some leaf guards. While he did that I made some homemade chocolate bark with almonds. It’s super easy and super yummy. It’s a healthier way to curb our sweet teeth with coconut oil, cocoa powder, pure maple syrup, pure vanilla and a touch of salt. I added chopped almonds and stuck it all in the freezer. Yum!

Other than that it’s been a do-much-of-nothing day. We watched a movie while having some lunch. I weaved in the ends of four dish cloths and salvaged the zipper from the recently purchased mattress cover’s packaging. I didn’t want to keep the plastic ‘bag’ but at the same time I hated to just throw it out. With a seam ripper in hand it only took a few minutes to detach the zipper from the bag. Now I have a perfectly good zipper that can be used on something else.

The rest of the day was spent reading and a nap was had by all (wink).

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