Thursday, July 2, 2015

An Up and Down Week, So Far



This photo of Callie was taken the year she was born...2013. 


My sweet Callie girl slipped out the door Monday afternoon
and we haven't seen her since.  I saw her run north of our
house and have called the neighbors to ask if they had seen
her.  No one had.   I've searched and called to no avail.


She loved to sit on my lap and with the new kittens occupying
my time lately, she hasn't had the attention she was used to.  I
don't know if that has anything to do with her disappearing
act or not.  I'm sad and worried.  You can imagine all the thoughts
that run through my mind.  Did someone pick up her up or did
a coyote get her?  At least she hasn't been seen on the highway.


We've had a couple of storms move through since Monday.  I do
hope Callie found shelter. 

Many farmers in the area haven't gotten all their soybeans planted yet.   And of course there is the water standing in some of the fields that has damaged some of the corn already planted.   I'm sure the farmers have much more to worry about than a missing kitty.


As the world gets more troubling and life gets busier, even worrisome at times, simple pleasures are all the more important to me.  Enjoying a tall glass of iced tea while sitting in the shade of my patio and gazing at the pretty flowers, cuddling a sleepy, purring kitten on my lap, reading a good book while listening to the rain fall against the window panes, or watching the sun set.  These are just a few simple pleasures I enjoy.  What about you?  What are some of your simple pleasures? 

 

Eating comfort food is a simple pleasure.  A meal of mashed
potatoes and roast beef is a favorite of mine.  I don't like to use the oven very often in the summer, so I will share a stovetop recipe that my dear aunt gave me a few years ago.  It has become my favorite way of fixing a rump roast.  



This recipe came from my aunt's mother-in-law and I call it Mammy's Roast.  Marie, aka Mammy as her grandson called her, was an excellent cook and baker.  She made the best angel food cakes with that delicious fluffy white icing.  I haven't ever forgotten how wonderful they were.   

Mammy's Roast

1.  In a heavy dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of bacon drippings or oil.
2.  Generously sprinkle a rump roast on all sides with Lawry's Seasoning Salt and cover with flour.
3.  Place salted and floured roast into the hot bacon drippings.  Brown on all sides, turning frequently so it won't burn.
4.  Remove the roast once it's browned.  Add 2 or more tablespoons of flour to the drippings and stir, making a good paste.  Add more salt, and pepper, as desired. 
5.  Add water to make a thin gravyIt will thicken as it cooks.
6.  Place the rump roast into the gravy and turn the burner down to a slow cooking stage.  Spoon a little gravy over the top of the roast and cook 2 to 3 hours, depending on the size of the roast, until tender.  Turn the roast every half hour.
7.  Remove the roast from the pan and let cool enough to slice.  The gravy is wonderful served with the roast and mashed potatoes!    

This is the best roast I've made and my daughter declares it her very favorite, too.  If you want a roast and don't want to turn on the oven, try this.  You'll love it or I'm not the Farmer's Daughter! 

Have Thursday to you!   
xo Cheryl 

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Bits and Bobs and a Birthday


Oh my!  I really didn't intend to be away for so long.  Is it just me or does time go by so much faster nowadays?  

I snapped the above photo out in the hot sun yesterday...yes, we actually saw the sun!...of my coneflowers now blooming.  This plant was new last year and really is doing well.  All my flowers are doing great with all the rain we've had.  Speaking of rain....


We went to Kansas City over the weekend to visit our son and encountered lots of rain, especially Sunday coming home.  The detour sign I saw through the windshield, when we pulled over waiting for the heaviest rain to move through, was perfect for the thoughts running through my mind.  Rain!  Take a detour...go to California where you're really needed!   

I recently read a news item that told how our area has had some form of precipitation every weekend, if you count Friday through Sunday a weekend, for the last 13 weeks!!  And when it isn't raining, it is very hot and humid.  

BG and I were gone a couple of days last week to a retirement seminar.  It rained both days we were there and I didn't take one photo.  The seminar was pretty interesting, but not enough to keep me from nodding off a time or two!   I wasn't the only one, I saw a few others having trouble keeping their eyes open, too. 



The bridgework is finished now and that means no more detours to take if I want to go to the lake and I went there as soon as I saw there might be a decent sunset Sunday evening when we got back home.  

Our son has a birthday coming up soon.  Happy Birthday, Brett!!  This photo was taken a couple of years ago, but he still looks just the same of course.    
I'll have to tell a cute story he told us when we saw him over the weekend.  His girlfriend was previously married and has 2 small children.  Her son, who is 4, was chattering away in the backseat while they were driving somewhere the other day.  All of a sudden he said, "Brett, I know what you're getting for your birthday".  Well, he was quickly hushed up by his mom and little sister and he went on chattering about something else when all of a sudden he said, "Brett, you know you just can't have too many watches".  lol  I can't wait to hear what he has to say when Brett gets his watch.  

The kittens have had tummy upsets the last 2 days, especially today.   I spent a good bit of time today holding them as they seemed to want to be close to me.  They have moments where they are romping around like normal, so hopefully it will quickly pass.  If not, we'll be visiting the vet.

I'm off to the Big Town for a little while today, but I'll be by to visit soon.  I've missed everyone!  Have a great day!

Cheryl

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

This and That


It's been so hot the last two days that even the lilies are perspiring!  Just kidding, that is actually rain drops leftover from the gully washer we had on Monday.  I stupidly bravely ventured out into the sweltering heat and humidity yesterday to go to the Big Town.  I really needed a haircut and had a few other errands to run.  I stopped by Lowe's and checked out their clearance racks and found several flowers for 50 cents and other packs marked a dollar.  I came home with enough to plant 5 pots that I had left over and the cost was just under 9 bucks!  Score!  I love to find a good bargain.  I went out very early this morning before it got too hot and planted everything.  Also watered the hanging baskets and those close to the house that the rains didn't drench. 


We have a strawberry thief.  Something is eating the ripened strawberries and also has nipped off several plants.  I suspect deer since we have plenty of them in the neighborhood.  The birds might be suspects but they wouldn't eat the plants, too.  


All the rains we've had this season keeps our garden, which doesn't drain very well, too wet to plant.  The exceptions being the 2 raised beds.  That means there won't be any sunflowers or zinnias planted and they will be missed this year.  I do have a few sunflowers growing up volunteer under a bird feeder.  It will be interesting to see how well they turn out.   


The kittens are growing by leaps and bounds.  They still sleep quite a bit, but when they are awake they are running all over the place.  Lots of fun to watch and lots of work keeping tabs on them and cleaning up their "accidents".     


BG and I have an anniversary coming up...44 years of wedded bliss!  All in all, it's been a good 44 years, which have gone by entirely too fast, and I think I'll keep him around for however many more years the Lord blesses us with.  He is a good man to put up with me that long!   
 
I want to thank each of you for your visits and comments even though I've not been online to blog very much lately.   My blogging friends are the best and I am grateful for each one of you!

Happy Wednesday to you!  Yes, it's still Wednesday...barely!
xo Cheryl  

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Winning, Whining, and Winery


The sun is hiding behind the rain clouds today, so the pretty golden coreopsis is here to help brighten the day.  Something happened last week that really put a smile on my face and brightened my day.  In fact, when I think about it now I still grin from ear to ear. 
 
Most of you probably read Susan Branch's blog and I know some of you, like me, have one of her calendars on your wall and perhaps one of her books on your bookshelf.  Well, Susan has been writing a new book titled The Fairy Tale Girl and last month on her blog she mentioned having a giveaway.  Her giveaway was going to be an autographed copy of her new book and she was going to give one to 10 lucky winners.  Guess whose name was one of the 10 drawn?  MINE!!!  I was so excited to see my name on her blog!!  If you want to see it, just go here.  I was doubly excited because I have entered numerous giveaways, but have never won anything so this was amazing!!  Now I will be anxiously awaiting my new book and it sounds like it will be a very good one.  I love Susan's blog and if you haven't read it, you are missing out!  Her calendars are works of art and her books are a delight, too.

 

Here are 2 of the sweet, simple things in life I've been enjoying.  Watching them play is more entertaining than anything on tv could ever be!  Yes, they have been a lot of work, no doubt about it...and still are a lot of work.  One of them is using the litter box but not the other.  Rainie is a bit behind Rambo...she is not eating solid food yet and hasn't figured out the litter box.  Life will be a lot easier when she catches up and I know it's only a matter of time before she does.  She is also my passive furbaby and Rambo the Rambunctious is very agressive.  He is a hoot to watch prancing around and doing his little side jumping.  Rainie is often content just to lay in my arms and curl up and purr.  When they start whining crying for their bottles and I begin fixing them, they will run and climb up the recliner where I usually feed them to wait for me like in the above photo.
 
  Daughter helping feed R&R in the kitchen.
It will be a sad day when they are old enough to be adopted, but I have enough kitties already and so I hope to find them a good home.  I will put on my brave face and be happy in knowing that their sweet little selves were saved from dying while out in the elements or starving after their mother disappeared. 
 

A trip to the winery on the Missouri river was on the agenda last weekend.  Our son was in with his girlfriend and my cousin, his wife and daughter, who lives in San Diego and was in visiting, met us there.   Our daughter fixed some food to take and everyone had a wonderful time visiting.  This photo of the river from the deck at the winery is from a few years ago.  I was so annoyed with myself for forgetting to put a fresh battery in my camera, so I wasn't able to take photos.  


I've decided to take the advice from some of you who suggested that I just blog when I can and not worry about commenting when I don't have the time.  I just can't stop blogging  and although the day will surely come when I will give it up, I just can't yet.  I'd miss y'all too much!  Hope to catch up on everyone soon.  Have a nice week!

Happy Wednesday to you!
xo Cheryl 

Thursday, May 28, 2015

This and That


I have such an exciting life.  Or not.  Here I am at 1:30 am sitting in my recliner while the little rug rats are playing.  Why am I up at this hour?  Well, it seems I fell asleep and missed the feeding that should have taken place a few hours ago.  After they are fed, I let them run and play for a bit before putting them to bed for the night.  I hope they will get used to the solid food soon and we can slack off on the bottle feedings.


 

We had a nice weekend and our daughter had a lovely birthday weekend, too.  Thank you so much for all the sweet comments.  
 
As all weekends do, it passed by way too quickly.  One evening, BG and I drove to a nearby river town to take a look at the rain-swollen Missouri river.
    

We have had plenty of rain, but nothing like what part of the country has experienced.  And my heart goes out to those who are dealing with flooding and loss of lives and homes.


My hubby and I went to the Big Town yesterday for his appointment with the heart doctor.  He said BG was doing good and that was wonderful news.  We celebrated by going to Home Depot and WalMart before going home.  Ha!  I had the bright idea to paint some terra cotta pots for several houseplants that need potting, but I had a change of heart.  I just didn't find time for that project and I don't know why I thought I needed yet another job in the first place.  So back to the stores we went to return the pots and paint.



I've been pondering yet again whether to give up blogging...at least for a season.  Life has just been too busy to do all the visiting I'd like to do and I feel bad about that.  I do love blogging as I've said many times.  So while I'm pondering, I do want all my friends to know that I appreciate each and every comment and I think of all of you often even if I haven't been able to visit as often as I'd like to.

Happy Thursday to you!
xo Cheryl

Friday, May 22, 2015

Blooms, Birds, Birthdays and Baby Kittens


It's Friday!  And it's been a busy week since I was here last.  
Rain has fallen, the sun is now shining....the
flowers are growing.


Birds are singing.  I snapped the bluebird while sitting on the 
patio one afternoon in between bottle feedings and chores.  
This photo is a happy accident and not clear like I wanted, 
but I like the way it turned out looking kinda like a painting.


Kittens are thriving.  And this is one of the reasons I've 
been too busy to blog.  They are both doing really doing well now. 
Rainie is eating much better as well as walking and is so sweet.  She likes to be cuddled and purrs a lot.  Rambo the Rambunctious loves to run around and explore everything.  It was quite an undertaking as I'm not used to feeding, burping and fixing bottles!  Not to mention the changing and washing of their bedding each time they are gotten out to feed and to play. 
But, it's impossible not to fall in love with them.
As my friend, Virginia, said in an email just the other day,
"Animals don't ask for much, just love, and they will
return it a thousand times."




Birthdays are happening.  Our daughter is having a birthday this holiday weekend.  One of her friends is having a party at their house with some of her friends to celebrate.  This photo is from last year, but she doesn't look any older!  
Happy Birthday, Kim!!
We love you lots and lots. 




BG and I picked up some fast food and enjoyed the lake view 
while we ate our supper last night.  I'll be happy when the 
bridge work is done so we don't have to take the detour.  
I don't go very often now and I miss my lake visits. 

While we were making plans for the weekend, we decided
to go this evening to the cemeteries and decorate the 
graves of our loved ones.  It is tradition here to not only
remember those who have died for our country but also to decorate
  the graves of our loved ones on this special holiday.

May each of you have a wonderful holiday weekend
in remembrance of those who died so that we might be free.

Happy Friday to you!
xo Cheryl   

Friday, May 15, 2015

Kittens, Muffins and A Conversation


We have had rain, lots of rain.  More rain is forecast from now until Christmas.  Just kidding about Christmas.  But it's supposed to rain through the weekend.  I want some nice weather and see skies again like in the photo above that I took the other day.  

I did get the planting of flowers in my pots finished this week in between feeding kittens.  One job crossed off the list.  Yay!
 


The kittens are still having a time getting used to bottles.  They might start out eating good, but too soon they act like they don't know what to do.  They do purr and are walking fairly well, but the female, Rainie, is not quite as big or eats as much as Rambo, the male.  I'm a little worried about her, I don't think she gets enough formula.   
 

I managed to get some blueberry muffins made yesterday.  I had heard about these delicious muffins at Vee's and the recipe for them came from Estelle's.  They were every bit as delicious as promised, but I will make them next time with fresh blueberries, I only had some frozen berries on hand.  If you like blueberry muffins you must try this recipe from Estelle's.

                                ~What did he say??  Yes, I lightened the dark circles.~
 
On Tuesday, BG and I drove to the Big Town for his doctor appointment, but the doctor was called away and BG had to reschedule.  He did get the blood work done.  After fasting all morning he was hungry so we stopped for a nice lunch.  After lunch and a stop at Lowe's we headed home.  On way home, the conversation went something like this.....

BG:  I really missed going into work today.


Me:  What??

BG:  I enjoy my job, as you know.  So I miss it when I'm not there.

Me:  You probably think the place would fold up if you weren't there.

BG:  Ha.  Ha.

 
Me:  You know I'm really glad you love your job.  Everyone should be so blessed.

BG:  I know I'm blessed.

Me:  Well, you know you could have added that you were blessed to have me riding with you to your appointment.  Or better yet, you could have said you were blessed to have me!

BG:  Sigh.  Were you just taking pictures of yourself?

Me:  They are called selfies and I didn't think you would notice.


BG:  Sigh.  Like I said, I really missed going to work today, but I did enjoy lunch.

Me:  If you want to work, when we get home you can mow the lawn.  It's supposed to rain tomorrow.


BG:  Pop in a CD and let's hear some music.


Me:  Sigh.  I know when to be quiet.  

Hope you have had a wonderful week.  It continues to be hard to get all the reading and commenting done that I would like to do.  Thanks for hanging in there with me...I'll be by as soon as I can! 

Happy Friday to you!
xo Cheryl


Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Food, Fun and Furbabies...


I hope all of you had a wonderful Mother's Day.  I sure did and I even got a Tour of Italy.  Well, that's what it was called on the menu!  


My sweet daughter took me to the Olive Garden for dinner.  BG, who isn't all that fond of OG elected to stay at home and babysit the kittens...more on that in a minute.  We really love their salad and bread sticks and the whole meal was delicious.  Thank you, Kim! 


My daughter also got me a beautiful card and red rose.  It was a fun day and the weather cooperated until we were back in the car and ready to head for home.  The rain began and just poured.  

I received 2 cards in the mail from my son.  The funny one said "If I had an extra $1000, you'd get more from me than just a Mother's Day card."  On the inside it said "You'd get a postcard from Hawaii."  lol!  He added at the bottom that he just couldn't resist buying that one.  He actually is in Hawaii this week for work, flying there a couple of days ahead of time to do a little sightseeing.  I'm trying hard not to be jealous.

The kittens I mentioned are the two little rug rats on the right.  lol!  I don't know whether to laugh or cry.  It's really sad because their mother abandoned them on our property and it was beginning to storm, they were soaking wet and starving, so we did what anyone who loves furbabies would do.  Brought them inside.  They are only around 2 weeks old or so.  We've looked for their mama but haven't found her.  I hope something didn't happen to her.  Anyway, to make a long story short, we I have gotten a new job.  One that I really didn't need, but the little ones didn't ask to be abandoned either and they deserve a chance at life.  So, I will be doing everything I can to give them that chance.  I did call the humane society in the Big Town, but as I'm not in that county I was put on a waiting list for a foster family to become available.  They told me they are bottle feeding over 70 kittens now, so I don't expect an opening anytime soon. 

I hope you, too, are enjoying this beautiful (and busy) month of May.  BG and I are headed today to the Big Town where he has his routine checkup with his heart doctor.  Our daughter will watch the furbabies and work on a grant for her center until we return.  I am behind on visiting, but I'll be by to catch up as soon as I can!     

Happy Tuesday to you!
xo Cheryl 

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mother's Day!


The spotlight is on mother's today and I want
to wish each of you a very beautiful day.

Happy Mother's Day!

Love,
Cheryl

Monday, May 4, 2015

Flower Planting Time


There is something I always seem to have to learn the hard way every spring.  And that is don't sit on your derriere all winter long and then fly into a cleaning and planting frenzy and not expect to hurt all over.  Ouch!  Ow!  Arrggh!  Where's the Advil?


The new entertainment center and mattress arrived Saturday.  Oh, I really love that comfy pillowtop mattress!  Of course, being the procrastinator that I am, I waited until Friday to do most of the cleaning in the bedroom where the new mattress was to go.   I store stuff under the bed, doesn't everyone?  And that stuff had to be moved.  Dust bunnies had to be rounded up.  The closet which didn't need to be opened even got cleaned out again.  How does it get so cluttered anyway?  The essentials were at least done by the time of the delivery.  More needs to be done yet, but now is the time for some outdoor work.  


It started to sprinkle today so that was enough to send me back into the house to do a little laundry, load the dishwasher and give the kitties some attention.  I will try to get more planting done tomorrow.  

I just wanted to check in this evening to say that I am still here even though I haven't been able to visit or blog much lately.  Unless the weather changes, I will be working in flower gardens and planting my flower pots for the back patio.  The front patio planting is done and looks nice, if you overlook all the seeds falling from the maple tree.  I'll take a photo as soon as we get the window painted.  The window needs replacing, but that is one of those things that gets pushed to the bottom of the list.  

We haven't forgotten The Project.  We're still awaiting someone to remodel the bathroom and a few other things before we get back to doing what we can do there.  It's too hard to find the right people for certain jobs around our small community.  

Hope your week is a good one!  I'll be by to visit as soon as I can.

Happy Monday to you!
xo Cheryl