Thursday, May 31, 2018


Sometimes you just gotta settle for less.

I'm in the excitingly fun process of turning some difficult grassy places into a shade garden.  This is located right beside the screened-in porch, and I've always longed for a bubbling fountain.  Wouldn't that be nice to sit inside the porch, hear the water, and see the birds come to it?

But the first disappointment came when I learned that most fountains use electricity, and our house doesn't have any electric outlets on the outside.  After considerations of how much it would cost to have an outlet put on the outside, that was voted out.  (I would rather have a water faucet at the front of the house instead, anyhow)

Then there are solar-powered bird baths.

But this is a shade garden, without sun.

The next stop was to learn that some solar-powered fountains have a solar panel with a very long cord, so that you can put IT in the sun while the fountain is under the shade.  And after reading and researching and looking at thousands of reviews and companies, there seems to be only one thing to say about these:


So I had another idea:  what about a small battery-operated desk/meditation fountain that I could just set inside the screened-in porch?  An ambiance thing that I could turn on and off whenever I'm in the porch--certainly not the ideal I had been nursing, but still:  beggars/losers and all that.

They're Junk.  Or really expensive.  Or don't even sound like "bubbling."


It's a very far cry from what I had in mind, but this is what I've settled for:

And it only cost $1.  The "Healing Sound of Water" is beautiful even when it's techno, I guess.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018


My flower garden is shaping up to becoming astounding this year. 

And in spite of the deer munching on the new hosta area, that place under the tree now has something special to make up for it:  a Fairy Ring.

I've never seen one before, so I am happy--whether I should be or not (these are often seen as dangerous places).  It means that fairies have been dancing there.

Ours is very small, but of course fairies are small too.  I would imagine.

Even though the center seems bare with mushrooms growing around it in a circle, the mushrooms are similar to the fruit/leaves, all attached to the main fungus "root" in the center (which isn't seen).

Nearby there looks to be half of another fairy ring?  Perhaps.  There is magic in the air.

Monday, December 18, 2017


I had an idea this year that seems to be working out well.  What could be better than sniffing yummy Christmas-y smells when you walk into the house?  I wanted my guys to be hit with goodness when they come home from work.

Here is a method for inexpensive, non-toxic air freshener.  I've done it before, but this time I tried to find out how LITTLE it would take to work, and I found out that it takes very little indeed.

1/8 tsp. cloves
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 apple core (or apple or lemon or orange peels)
4 C. water

Put this in a saucepan, bring to a boil, and let simmer without a lid.  Begin cooking it 15 minutes before guests arrive, and perhaps 5-10 minutes after.

The amazing thing is that this can be used over and over again.  For the past 5 days, I have just kept adding water (and perhaps throwing in some more peels when they become available) and boiling it some more.  If you are worried that it will spoil, keep it in the refrigerator; at this point, if mine spoils, I still got a lot of use out of it and I'll not regret the loss.

Dear Friend, 
Do not let it burn dry.  Then it doesn't smell very good.  
Signed, An Experienced User

Thursday, December 14, 2017


Snow is a great boost for Christmas emotions.

Saturday, November 25, 2017


Decorating the Christmas tree is always an exercise in remembrance.  When we go on special vacations, I try to buy something for the tree to remind us of that trip, or that place where we once lived.  Here are a few:

Tucson, Arizona



This is most certainly the ugliest ornament we have on the tree; a bit of kitsch.  It is a reminder of Gainesville, Florida--where the Gators are the team for The University of Florida.

The Netherlands 


Barnegat Light, Long Beach Island, New Jersey

University of Missouri

Disney World


Where No Man Has Gone Before--oh wait!  Not yet.

Monday, July 10, 2017


We are spending a week at our favorite ocean spot:  Harvey Cedars Bible Conference.

Every afternoon I have saved an ocean animal's life by grabbing a piece of plastic from the sea. Today, Gary says I rescued a fish from de-CAP-i-tation.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017


Yesterday I transferred 100 Lily-of-the-Valley plants from a 1 X 2 foot space to underneath this tree.