Wednesday, August 31, 2016

August Finale

This last day of August is always special to me.  It's our anniversary...42yrs ago I married a really cool, fun, hard working, smart, handsome guy... and my best friend!  Happy Anniversary Babe! Wow, time has flown!

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Very Filled Up Week

This week and weekend certainly have buzzed by quickly.  We've been busy doing normal, everyday things.  You know, work, home, work, home....Oh,  did I mention a birthday was celebrated this week?  I  kept telling Jack that this was his birthday week. I made his favorite dishes for dinner all week and on Thursday we had his usual bday dinner of Shrimp Creole followed by Texas Sheet cake.
Big cake!  Most of the cake ended up going to work with me the next day.  They were very glad Jack had a birthday!   I posted it on Facebook.  Jack doesn't do Facebook and when some friends texted him  birthday wishes he finally figured it out that I told the whole world!  Hey, it's a celebration right? Happy Birthday Babe!  Saturday brought us the opportunity to do a little service for a very worthy cause.
Associated Charities feeds hundreds of hungry folks and also helps cloth them and make sure every child has new school supplies and backpacks.  Christmas brings many out for help with food and gifts. To accommodate  all the needs a new location was needed.  This building was in much need of repair and funds were raised to make it happen.
The original, historic front of the building was kept, but the inside and back were all remodeled and updated.  What a wonderful place for families to go for help.  Saturday we went over and helped unload many boxes of food and get it ready to be organized on shelves.  Most of the work will be done this week and be ready for the public open house.
This is just a small section to show where foods will be kept shelved.  There's also a room with coats, gloves, hats and boots.  School supplies lined another area and there's a Christmas room that already has gifts that have been donated.  Sometimes it's easy to think there is no good going on in the world, and then you realize how generous a community can be for those less fortunate.
The truck arrived with the goods.
We were ready to start unloading.
A fun group of Ashland University students loaded up the boxes from the old area and brought them to the new facility.  They were the nicest kiddos!
Sorting and shelving.
Jack just observing!  He really did work too!  All in all it was a good day.  It was hot but we weren't too uncomfortable in the building.  It's amazing how much work can be done when many pitch in.  A few final thoughts for today.   I went out and picked the very first apple we've gotten off our very first apple tree here at the Pines.
I'm sure it will taste even sweeter knowing we grew it ourselves...well, with the help of the tree, the weather, and of course God!  Less we forget, it was National Dog Day this week too.
We don't regret getting this guy into the family! He's been a good buddy, sweet friend.  I love the sign that said "We were rescued by our shelter dog"...Thanks Chubbs!  Now for the real final thought.  Ashland schools start the new year tomorrow.  Some of the surrounding areas started last week.  I found this pic of my first day of Kindergarten 58yrs ago...1958.  I remember it clearly.  I really wasn't excited to go!
Can you tell?

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Summer's Bounty

Summer has many good qualities.  Yep, it's much warmer and much lighter outside later in the evening.  It's time for vacations, family reunions, class reunions, camping, swimming, and many other activities.  We're into the heat of the Farmer's Market offerings.  All the area Amish are selling produce and the orchards are ready with peaches and early apples.  Down in the southern part of the country many gardens are already done.  Ours is just coming into the "check every day for some more stuff" phase.  We struggled, along with the area farmers as we've had a very hot and dry Summer.  The rain has finally come and my lawn is green again and I've been able to mow and not feel like I'm kicking up more dust than grass!  But we've been disappointed with our little garden and fruit offerings this season.  My raspberries were dried up before I got enough to make jam this year.  The green beans had only one picking before they too just didn't produce.  We even were diligent with watering, but still it was a struggle.  We've had better luck with okra and tomatoes.   Green peppers also have been a disappointment.  Well, thankfully the Farmer's Market on Saturday mornings has been a blessing to go and get yummy, homegrown veggies at a good price.  We combined ours with theirs for some nice meals.  Yesterday I took this:
And made this:
Mmmmm...Salsa anyone?  Just the right amount of fresh and heat to put with some chips for a delish snack.
All gone! We enjoyed fresh corn, green beans, and red potatoes for a vegetarian meal.   All of Summer's bounty enjoyed!  The weather has turned....low humidity and cooler temps. Chubbs and I walked into the Creepy Woods this afternoon.   I was on a bit of a scouting effort...just a peek to see if any spot would make a fun cemetery for a Halloween party.  Never too early to think about Fall and Halloween is it?  A few spots caught my eye:
Down this nice trail...
To a clearing that wouldn't be hard to spook up a bit.  My wheels have been turning and I think Jack is nervous I'm serious about holding an outdoor shindig for church, family, and friends.  Maybe because this beauty arrived this past week...
Be very afraid!  But we still have a few weeks of Summer left.  I plan to enjoy the last days of sun, fun, swim and mostly it's wonderful bounty of blessings! 

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Get Me A Knife!

Yes, a knife is just what is needed around the Pines these days.  For what you ask?  Just to cut the air!  It's been a very hot and humid week. The air is thick as butter.  We have had a touch of rain here and there but not nearly as much as we need.  I feel bad for the folks down south that are getting slammed.   You would think with all the humidity we would be raining daily.  The forecast calls for some each day so I guess we'll just have to do a few rain dances to draw it our way!  As the week draws to a close I'm realizing the month of August is almost half over.  Kids will be back in school soon and the other day I saw candy corn on display.  Isn't that Halloween candy?  The fact that I actually bought a new Halloween decoration today doesn't mean a thing...hehe!  I'm on call this weekend and you all know how I just love that..(throwing sarcasm here!)  I'll be connected to my call phone from Friday at 3:30 to Monday morning at 7.  It's the one time I look forward to Monday morning when I can turn the phone off for a bit.  One last thought:  The other day I opened up the umbrella on the table on our deck and I found this little guy.
Don't you sometimes feel just like this?  In a spot you don't want to be, hanging on for dear life?!  Have a wonderful weekend!

Sunday, August 7, 2016

PAWZ For A Cause

Yesterday we went over to the fairgrounds to support our local chapter of PAWZ and donate to the Humane Society.  There were pet parades, contests, vendors with lots of cute pet accessories, many of them homemade.   I didn't bring the camera but we did take Chubbs with us.  He was happy for the ride and exploring the fairgrounds and seeing lots of other dogs.   However, one of the reasons we went was so he could get a nice bath from our groomer...the Barker Shop.  We donated toward the Humane Society and poor Chubbs had to pay the price! He's not overly fond of baths.  He would probably have a few choice barks if he were that kind of guy.  But he's a good sport, a kind old soul, and a very good boy.  When we got home he immediately did his ear rubbing ritual.
Rub the ears, roll on the carpet, shake his head...then he was ready for his pose with his new necktie.
Which I took off ASAP after the shot!
He just gave me the look.   Then we had to get ready to go to a birthday party for our Grandson, Cameron.  When we took Chubbs to the car he really didn't want to go!  I was forgiven however when he realized no bathing was in store!   It was fun to celebrate with Cam and see the other kiddos.
He opened gifts...
Blew out a candle on some cheesecake..his favorite dessert..
And took a flying leap into his pool!
His cousin Addy was there to help celebrate.  She's a little fish!
Happy 9th Birthday Cameron! We sure love you!  The weekend weather has been glorious.  The temps were a bit cooler and the humidity was down.  We were even able to open up our windows last night and let in the cool night air.  I love it when I can hear all the night sounds and feel the breezes!  Jack and I sat outside until around midnight looking at the stars in the very clear night sky.  We even saw what I call "shooting stars" but I'm sure they were meteorites.  Whatever they are called,  that always makes me smile when we get to see them.   I wished upon a star, then headed off to bed.  Since I couldn't get a shot of the stars,  I'll end with a pic of a bouquet from the garden...
This weekend went way too fast!  No time to really PAUSE!