Wednesday, August 30, 2006


I cannot even begin to get across the beauty of this morning in my yard. the light is just absolutely amazing, everything is glowing. there is a stillness in the air, and the the smell of finally-cut grass too.

Monday, August 28, 2006

what the heck is this?

so yesterday i was out for a second, and i caught a flash of something in the phlox was moving really really fast. for a second, i really thought it was a hummingbird, it was a couple inches long and seemed to have a "needle" that it was inserting into the plant to extract nectar.

i ran into the house to get the camera, but he was a little too quick for me. when i uploaded the shots, i see that he has antennae - hmmmm - anybody know what this IS?

a hummingbird impersonator moth? if so, just like watching fake Elvises in Vegas, i enjoyed the show anyway :)

Sunday, August 27, 2006

day of rest

I had a busy day yesterday, chopped up some more tomatoes in the morning, lunched with a friend, then went to Montrose for a "benefit" that my friend Carey helped put on for a friend of hers with cancer.

small town SD is different... in a good way, mostly. i took the gate money for the event, so i got to see almost everybody for a moment. mostly young families with small children, from the looks of it, lots of harley and racing tshirts and cute cute little kids. but there were older folks too, sitting in their lawn chairs watching the festivities, and a ton of people in bright yellow shirts who had volunteered their time and efforts to work at the event.

the coolest part of the day was when a truckload of Hutterite women, accompanied by one sweet Hutterite man, brought boxes and boxes of vegetables and homemade items to donate to the honoree. it seems she worked at the colony last year, and made some friends. they serenaded her, and her pastor prayed over the event, and she cried.

and now, she will go about the business of living again. something it appears she has a pretty good handle on, from the looks of the people who came out to cheer her on.

Friday, August 25, 2006

colorful Friday

Yesterday was a fine day for a birthday, i had a lot of warm wishes, and a couple of surprises too! My friend Rhonda told me she is PG, which was a great birthday surprise! congrats to you Rhonda!

So, it's nice to be ending the week on such a nice note. I went out to the garden this morning, and just decided to pick all of those silly banana peppers, not sure what i will do with them...but, when i dumped em into a bowl, i did not really care because they were just absolutely gorgeous. this is probably why i garden anyway, because vegetables are pretty. hey, that could be my next blog name!

have a blessed day everyone!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

getting along swimmingly

good day so far, here are my 2 little birthday buddies, no names yet! i want to get a peace lilly to put in the top of the container(s) but so far, they seem to like their new digs.

16060 days

I woke up this morning to my 16060th day*

You do the math :)

have a happy one!

* not counting leap days because that is too hard to do.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

A tale of two kitties

It's becoming a daily occurrence, the cats wandering around the yard. This morning it was our neighborhood "bad boy" - not the same cat as yesterday in the alley! i call this guy Loco, because his behavior is kinda silly. He's like one of those bad a** teenagers who cuts through your yard and doesn't really care. but he is starting to come around. i talk to him, and he rubs against me, then rolls around on the ground for awhile. I really think he is a sweetheart.

This morning, he walked right by the door to the porch, and neither he nor Been seemed to notice the other was around. i guess they were both looking at the pretty garden :)

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Size matters

I have waited all summer for my morning glories to bloom. obviously, i should have planted them somewhere else ... but yesterday i was so happy to see a bloom!! you had to hunt for it, but there it was, plain as day. well, sort of.

then this morning my friend Kirsten posts HER photo on HER blog.

nuff said.

Woo hoo!

I switched over to a Firefox browser this morning (what's not to love about a name like Firefox?) and it seems to be more friendly with blogger! The back forty lives on...

Tuesday morning

Well, this morning was another great pre-fall day. Still no photos, blogger has quit working with me on that. i'm on the hunt for a new blog spot, not sure why but i am tired of trying to upload photos and having to reboot my entire computer! I will not be defeated :))

The most interesting thing that has happened so far today would not have a photo attached anyway, i did not have my camera handy. Been and i decided to go outside for our morning ritual, then i remembered that i forgot to bring my coffee along. when i came back outside, there was a standoff in the alley, two tomcats face to face. First was a young orange cat, not the same one that is usually around, but a really pretty boy. He was shaped in the traditional "halloween pose" of a large upside down "U" and looking at Been like he was Osama Bin Laden.

Then there was Beener. He was shaped in a "u" also, kind of like the old horses you see in cartoons, whose backs have given out to a permanent sway. His ears were kind of perky and he was looking at the other cat like "hmmmm, what are you staring at me for?"

he he. Been never ever did have an aggressive bone in his body. Luckily, i was just able to walk up to them, pick up Been and end the whole deal as quickly as it began. Schwew.

I also got to witness the pilgrammage of lots and lots of kids to school, with one day under their belt. Hawthorne Elementary is just down the street from my house. I just hope and pray that all of those little kids have parents at home whose hearts are already missing them, and are having a hard time letting them go, just like my friend in Montrose....

happy day.

Monday, August 21, 2006

blog blues

happy new week!

alot of the time, blogging makes me feel like i am a crack addict in a rehab clinic or seems like blogger fails to work quite abit... i guess you "get what you pay for" but mostly i am frustrated because there is seemingly no rhyme or reason to when i can and cannot post. now that i have a rare "go" window, i have nothing interesting to say!

anyway, i am looking forward to a nicely paced week. i have no big projects due, just lots of little ones to keep me occupied. funny how drastically things change from one week to the next, i never really know til i get up and look at the calendar (and then i pretty much need to take it day by day). i remember the old days, of having to sit in a huge monday morning "planning" meeting, yawning all the way thru and trying not to think about all the crap on the "job sheet" - now my job sheet consists of walking around the garden and asking the Lord for help, because i am not really ready for Monday!

oh, it must be the changing season, because i abandoned my resolution to let the professionals color my hair, and gave myself a lovely shade of red orange last night! hmmmm. i will look good standing next to my orange zinnias, but that is about it. i'll have some "splainin" to do next time i have an appointment to get a haircut :)

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Thoroughly modern technology

i love "modern" technology. not sure why, but i bought this little gizmo on a garage sale last summer, somehow i guess i just knew it might come in handy. it kind of reminded me of my gramma, that too.

then, this morning, with too many tomatoes to count on hand, i needed a plan of attack! as you can see from the photo, it's kind of a messy process. you cut up and cook the tomatoes, leaving the skin and seeds and everything in the pot...then, you just pour the cooked "goop" into the fancy gizmo, and roll the triangle shaped rolling pin around, til you force all the juice and pulp from the tomatoes into the container underneath. the seeds and the skin stay - whalla - in the gizmo!!

you know, whoever invented this was totally ahead of their time. i cannot imagine anything working better than this, and it was really pretty easy to use, even without an instruction manual...

The results? 5 quarts of perfectly smooth tomato juice :))

Looking back to May 22nd

It's all in the perspective

Today is not the day I hoped for. After a crazy busy week, i looked forward to lounging in the sun porch with a beverage and a book, maybe pulling a few weeds, going to farmers market, and pouring over canning books for ideas of what to do with the latest crop of tomatoes.

When i stepped my toes out the door, i realized somebody forgot to tell me it was going to be crappy outside today. it's cold!! late september cold, get-ready-for-winter cold. actually, i kind of like this kind of weather, if my fantasy is a sweatshirt and hot chocolate and a football game with friends. but (see above) that was not today's plan in my head.

I went out to the sun porch anyway, and contemplated a new kind of day. Beener was cranky, and i did not have warm enough clothes to stay out long. then, when i got up to leave the scene, my eye was just drawn in to the overall picture in front of me. This messy, haphazard, shabby chic world is truly a picture of every fantasy i've ever had about how i hoped my life would look. God in His infinite wisdom can take overgrown, half dead stuff and arrange it into perfection, without even half trying.

Thanks Lord, i needed that. Happy weekend!

Friday, August 18, 2006

Ahhh. Back to the garden

better day. i got up and spent some garden time, which is my time to pray and find a meaning for the day. i love morning!

anyway, today i just sat and stared at the beautiful little "stray" flower that somehow popped up in my garden. i noticed it earlier, but i have no idea what it is, i think i saw somewhere that it might be wild hibiscus, or wild cotton. but where did it come from?

the thing that is drop-dead COOL is the seed pod. it's like one of those rice paper lanterns you buy at pier one, only translucent and so very very neat. The pods are pretty small, maybe 5/8" for the big ones, but they are very long lasting - i really plan to save some of that seed, hopefully can have a whole bunch of this next year! The flower is pretty too, today there was not one in full bloom so you cannot really see how pretty it is.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

One of those days

See, i knew this day would come... the day that i would have to be totally honest in a not-very-flattering way about myself, right here on my spanky clean spotless blog.

And although i'm not entirely ready for it, today is that day.

I am a mess today, and i don't like it when i'm a mess. Between lost computer disks, and needy clients, and dinging emails and a computer that is still "poofing" and too darn much work to get done by Friday (my zen day), and just general disorderliness, i realize what a sham my life is! See, the thing is, most of it could be avoided. but i procrastinate in EVERY area of my life, and every once in awhile (okay, far too often) it bites me in the butt.

Today my biggest stress is that my good friends in St Paul want to stop by and stay over here in SF with me in a couple of weeks. Not a big deal, right? I mean, i totally miss them (the whole family of five!!) and they hardly EVER come this way! Well, it kind of IS a big deal if you consider that my "guest room" in the basement is riddled with year-old cat pee infested carpet, mounds of size 5 and above clothing (last time i was a size 5? 1999...) and too many other piles of unidentified junk to mention. i don't think about it too much, i just avoid going downstairs. Which usually works pretty well.

Til today, when my whole nice tidy little world of denial comes falling around my ankles.

There you have it - the real, blogorific me.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Should I be afraid?

I know it's generally not a good sign to find grasshoppers in the garden. For some gardeners, i think that's even a pretty good sign of bad things to come. But gosh darn it, they just look SO COOL. This little guy totally watched me while i was crawling around and fumbling trying to get the best shot. And he never moved, i'm pretty sure he has his eye on the big tomato right out of frame. Okay, since you're so cute, you can have it :)

One thing i'm very pleased with is my new "flower find" this summer, my blackberry (i think that they are also called "candy") lilies. I got the orange one at a fantastic nursery in St Paul (Highland Nurseries) and the other two i have, i got on clearance at Lewis Drug. For the record, they all seem nice. Someday i want to have a "clearance" garden filled with all of the cheap stuff i've saved from death at the end of the season. Some are duds, but some are awesome!

Enjoy, happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Cmon, you can do it!

I have 4 giant peppers that are turning red right now...about 5 bucks worth, according to the going rate at HyVee. I only planted one red pepper plant, because eventually ALL peppers turn red if you leave them on the vine long enough, a bonus if you are a procrastinator like me. anyway, i seriously want these to turn, because i have a recipe for roasted red pepper spread i am dying to try. thanks to my ball canning book that i bought at menards!! bet you didn't know menards had gourmet stuff, did you? :)

on a completely different note, my 10 year old computer monitor is making a weird clicking noise, and then the screen "poofs" for a second. this is the second day it's been doing that. i wonder if that means anything?

Monday, August 14, 2006

This one? Or this one?

I'm always redoing something in my head. Either i'm at work redoing somebody else's stuff, or at home redoing my own. I always tell my boyfriend I like him cause he's a "fixer upper" - not sure he likes that analogy.

Anyway, the latest thing is the bathroom. I'm in the mood to paint! I'm kind of limited because i have atrocious 1950s grey/green tile in there that i have to match for now, but still, lots of colors out there to choose from.

In fact, i sort of want to repaint every room in the house. i started in the spring with the living room. Now the office is shabby and the kitchen is just too persimmoney for the rest of the house. So, i'm going to lighten it up.

Phillip says I'm finally leaving my dark side behind. ha.

Sunday, August 13, 2006


Oh, how funny to live in SD...what was a crunchy brown lawn is now a breeding ground for a little crop of mushrooms, makes me remember the days when i grew em myself in the back of my chevy cavalier (that's a whole nuther story)...anyway, they seem to like their home by the sidewalk.

yesterday was huge ... I made my very first canned salsa, my friend Jane's recipe from about 20 years ago. 12 pints, that's a pretty good haul. My hands burned from cutting jalapenos for about 3 or 4 hours, yikes. Funny story there, my friend Jane recounts often of how the 1st time she made this recipe with her buddy Wayne, he unwittingly decided to go to the bathroom in the middle of cutting the jalapenos, and had to go to the emergency room! ha ha ha. God should have put a caution sticker on those little guys :)

Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted, "Hosanna! " "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!" Mark 11:9

Saturday, August 12, 2006

High wire act

I remember from growing up that caterpillars (the monarch kind) love it wasn't a huge surprise when i found this little guy munching in the garden last night. In fact, the garden has kind of become a training camp for butterflies this time of the year. I have bunches of those little white guys that love cabbage, lots of brown moths, and of course that spectacular swallowtail (i had to look that up) that i found a couple of weeks ago!!

One of the best parts of a garden is the creatures that come along with it!

Friday, August 11, 2006

There must be tomatoes in Heaven

There is something about looking at my tomatoes that just makes me so happy.

I feel sorry for people who don't like them much, kind of like i feel sorry for people who don't like pets, because they drool and poop in wrong places and get fur on the furniture.

Tomatoes are meant to be enjoyed, to be relished (ha!) and to be beheld :))

short and round

Of course we've all heard that old adage about people often resembling their pets. What i'm also beginning to suspect is true, although far less talked about, is that people may also carry a strong resemblence to their vegetables.

Kiss me over the garden gate

This morning i found a new little treasure in the garden. this flower was given to me by a new friend, a woman from colorado whose in-laws live down the street. Anyway, it's called "kiss me over the garden gate" and evidently grows up to 6 or 8 feet tall...mine is little yet, only about 30" tall, but looks like it's about ready to kiss me anyway...

:) happy Friday!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Ah, the sweet sounds of ... a beer fight?

James Taylor is magnificent. He opened up last night and the first thing i thought is "his voice is like gold." He started singing "Something in the way she moves" - one of my fave songs of his, because he sings "i feel fine anytime that she's around me now, and she's around me almost all the time" - i just like him.

The crowd was old. i guess that we were mostly HIS age or a bit younger, he is 58. Oh well, it was pleasant enough to see various local "socialites" out for the night, dressed in their silver glittery belt buckles and crop pants. Whatever, i guess.

The thing that concerned me was the people in front of me, OF COURSE. Just like in the bar brawl days, the worst ones are always right in front of you. I really tried not to pay attention, but the seriously frightening little lady swilling beer with her friends (looked like she stepped right out of 1988 in her "fashion sense") was kind of bugging me. Since i'm a christian now, i just said a prayer that she would catch a mental glimpse of herself and settle down.

Which seemed like a fine plan until the lady IN FRONT of her asked her to please be quiet (meanwhile, James is in the background, i'm not really paying much attention at this point). Anyway, said "drunk lady" DID sit down, but she was clearly peeved. Her other drunk girlfriends rallied around her, and the mortified husbands just sat there like logs, staring at JT...hmmmm. I thought it was probably over as JT went into "Carolina in my mind" except for the drunk lady decided to whip the remnants of her 5th beer at the lady in front of her (who is a local business owner, OMG, i would NOT throw beer at this woman!!) At that point i did start to think about the fact that i was missing Project Runway.

Ah. Good stuff. i don't think the affronted lady really noticed the beer whipping, she kind of felt her back, but she never turned around again. James was in full boat action with "steamroller" at that point, and the arena was rocking. So, not exactly what i expected for my night of entertainment, but entertainment nonetheless.

Today, i will listen to a James Taylor cd.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

bring it on

Wow, it's been quite a day. although this blog is not about my "other life" as a designer, sometimes i just cannot deny that my work is a pretty big chunk of my life. After a great summer of part time work, full time blessings, i am starting to get busier...

And i am glad. I have several clients right now who are just so darn fun!! One of them is opening their store here in SF next week, and i swear, i would do this project for no money, i am enjoying it so much!!

but alas, it's alot of work too. good thing i am planning on going to see sweet baby james tonight, if THAT doesn't relax me, i don't know what will :))

i'll let you know about it tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Bumper Crop

I don't know what a bumper is, but maybe this is it. Somehow the tomatoes know to want to be picked during the work week, rather than the weekends. I'm hoping this batch lasts til Friday afternoon, so that i can give salsa-making a try! The only thing i'm lacking at this point is jalapenos, i planted those too late and they are not ready to pick yet...but plenty of peppers and onions, and a nice array of tomatoes.

The thing i love is the variety. I about died when i reached down into the mass of plants and pulled out a neon orange tomato!! Too bad the plant markers are too buried to find, but i will definitely take note and try to buy that variety again, i've never grown yellow/orange tomatoes before! I think most of these are heirloom variety tomatoes, but that must have been something my grandma missed out on. I thought of her yesterday, i wonder if she and the Lord are watching me with pleasure, that i really am not so far from the vine after all :))

Sunday, August 06, 2006

ahhh. clean is nice.

Well, 4:13 and i am finished with the office. I still have alot of things to do in here, like paint the walls...probably that butterscotch pudding color that i rejected for the living room, and antique the furniture black. and get a new rug and maybe new window treatments and recover the foot stools.

But, the closets are clean and not ONE PILE of crap on the floor! wow, that is a feat.

My most favorite element of the room is a giant collage board i made today of some of my favorite design projects. Good thing i had that giant picture frame in the basement!! oh yeah, and the notorious filing cabinet (shown far left) is pretty nice too.

For a $1 investment, i think i did pretty well...

Sunday project

I can tell the thrill of the outdoors is starting to wear down a bit in myself, lately i have been dreaming about all the stuff that needs to be done INSIDE of the house. Last week, i looked at a new living room rug at World Market (gotta love that place!!) and today i saw that it's 30% off, so i ordered one this morning. it's slightly different than the one in the store, i hope it really IS that mustard color with sage green, since i just painted my walls green. fun, no wonder i love the ups man so much.

in other news, at 9:30 last night i started tearing apart my home office and rearranging furniture. It all started when i bought a filing cabinet for $1 at a rummage sale yesterday. One filing cabinet sparked a whole new office :))) seriously, this place needs any type of organization i can add. Something must be in the air, i notice my friend Kirsten is in "cleanup" mode as well!

happy Sunday!

Friday, August 04, 2006

Just In Time

Well, it looks like some of my weekend plans are coming together. My backordered food dehydrator just showed up on my doorstep, courtesy of FedEx!!

I am excited, it was quite a big purchase, but i have always wanted to try dehydrating! i will also probably can some salsa here as the tomatoes come in, but this will be a nice thing to have as well. I am going to do some tomatoes, and maybe even buy a lug of peaches if they look nice - yummy!! Hopefully my mom and dad will have some apples for me this fall too, i want to dry some apple snacks for those winter "sweet attacks"!

I love being a farmer!!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006


Okay, i admit that i am extremely happy right now. I spoke earlier in the week about a mishap involving a dead bunny and two boys in my alley. i cried over this bunny almost all day, i just had such an attachment to him. When i told Phil the story about him, the first words out of his mouth were "babe, there's probably more than one bunny."

I was fairly peeved that he thought i might not know my own darn bunny, but he's a guy and they have to problem-solve so i let it slide.

Then this afternoon, as i rounded the corner by the garage on my tomato-picking tour, look what i found!! He's baaaaack :))

Junk Mail

I was checking out my "comment box" this morning, and even though i have only shared this blog with 3 people, i see that i had some spam in my comments!

It's kind of like the world, no matter how hard you try, the junk mail always finds a way into our lives! I'm not really sure where this blog is going yet, but i imagine i'll encounter more weird stuff as it gets more widely read (if i keep going!)

Anyway, it's a great Wednesday here on the BF, i just got done with a great prayer walk around a refreshed, happy-from-the-rain neighborhood. What a difference that rain makes, in our attitudes and our spirits!!

Otherwise, it's a good hump day. i am starting to get busier now, but just in the nick of time, before i become to comfortable with my part-time lifestyle!

Be Blessed!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Accidents DO happen

oh boy, i am not real proud of my actions in this post...

Since Been is old now, i need to help him with some of the basic grooming techniques he used to take care of himself. I brush him, and snip off any matted fur when it gets out of control. Sometimes, i get a little snip-happy. For instance, most of last summer, his hind quarters were kind of bald.

Yesterday i spotted a big old matted fur lump near the back of his ear, and it HAD TO GO. Luckily, i got it pretty easily. Unluckily, i also got almost ALL of the whiskers on the left side of his face! Doh. Do those grow back?

new month, new attitude

Oh, so glad to wake up this morning to rain!! Been and i ended up getting "stranded" out on the patio for awhile this morning, it was fun to watch the rain and thank the Lord for how He takes care of us just when we need it most!! The plants seems to be just "drinking it in" - hope it continues for awhile.

Yesterday was stressful. Not only did i lose my baby bunny to some boys in the alley, but the neighbor next door (see yesterday's entry) decided to call the police and tell them that I LET THEIR DOG OUT yesterday morning. of course, it's not true, but somehow i have entered into the dysfunction and aggression that is going on over there...

Thankfully, i had bible study last night. Oh, and thankfully I had Phillip, who called about 15 minutes after the whole "ordeal" went down! His perspective was wonderful. And God's is even better, i am not going to enter in and "play" with them, i am just praying that the real problems will begin to show, or maybe the dog will miraculously adjust to his new life.

Oh man. So glad it is a new day!! Hope you are enjoying it in your own way as well.