THE FIRST TIME I TRIED TO DIE (no, not on purpose!).

To this day I cannot keep my hands off baby animals.  Don’t care what kind of animal it is, just as long as it is in baby form.  Adults, not so much.

On a farm, there is always some type of babies being born.  If it wasn’t my 4-H rabbits, it was the cousin’s pig.  Well, one fine year we had a Welsh Pony, her name was Dolly.  She was a booger!  The meanest pony I ever met.  Once you got the bridle and saddle on her, she was fun to ride.  Trying to get them on without her stepping on your foot or trying to nip you was another story.  I don’t know where or when it happened, but she got pregnant and had a colt.  A beautiful black and white spotted thing just like her.

dolley and baby

I can’t tell you how many times dad warned us NOT to go near Dolly.  She was very protective of her baby, as a mother should be.  Did I listen?  Nope!  I would go out there for hours and try to get close enough to touch the baby.

There was a small shed out in their pen with the door and window blown out.  Dolly would hide in there with her baby, and I knew it.  I would crawl up to the side of the building and try to reach in to get to touch the baby.  Never worked.

One day I decided I was just going to do it!  Just who did this pony think was the boss anyway?  So, I put on my little cowboy boots, grabbed my coat and off I went.  I marched right into that pen, right up to the pony and that was the last thing I remember of that encounter.

Apparently, she knew she was the boss and the moment I got too close, she decided to show me.  Swung her butt around and planted a hoof square on my head – knocked me out cold.  I was lucky for two reasons:

  1.  Dolly did not want to come after me for more damage once I was down.
  2. Dad saw the whole thing.

He managed to get me to the house (back then you didn’t just rush off to the hospital or doctor, you tried to handle it at home first.) where mom took over and eventually I came around.

Now, I’m not going to say I was okay.  As far as “ok” – that is still left to be determined (sure hope not)!  However, I was an idiot back then, and I will continue to prove this to you in my future family stories. (FYI – Dad’s nickname for me was “Dumb Shit” for a reason.)

headache dog

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There is just something about a rainy day that I just love.  I can’t quite pin it down to one single thing.  Maybe it is because I hold so many great reasons:

  • Rainwater is best for all the plants.  Veg, flower, bush and tree all look and act so much better with rain water.  Even more so than our well-water.
  • A steady rain (like what is going on now) makes me feel major creative!  Writing, sewing, knitting, crocheting, even cooking (SHOCKER – for me anyway, I normally do not do the cooking here, and it is not one of my passions – love the eating part, but my Sis does the awesome cooking in our household).
  • Something calming for me in the sound of the rain falling, especially on a tin roof (our outbuildings all have tin roofs).
  • The sound of the wind whipping up, rain pouring down, throw in some lightning and thunder and I can fall right to sleep (hee hee- I know, it keeps most people up but not me – so weird).
  • Then there is the childhood part of it.  When I was young, we couldn’t wait for the rain to come.  It meant fresh fruits and veggies to pick and eat, mud puddles to stomp around in, and the added benefit of hot cocoa when we finally came into the house soaking wet and cold.  It meant something warm and comforting for me.  Snow does the same thing.

I am much older now; I also have osteoarthritis (in all my joints) which can mean some painful moments on these types of days.  I believe my contentment overrides the pain.  Maybe it is also seeing something accomplished.  I used to work in offices and factories.  At the end of the day, I always felt like I didn’t accomplish anything.  There was still a pile of work left to be done on the next day, and it all looked the same.  Now I can work on a project and actually see that it is complete.  The next day will bring a new project.  Sure, I have some projects that take more time than others, but the overall feeling is of accomplishment.

So, this morning is time to finish a sewing project for a friend’s horses:

8-25 sew proj

Then vacuum seal some meat:

8-25 vac sealer

Maybe work some more on knitting projects:

8-25 knit work

Then later I have to fry up some chicken and cook some rice to put on zucchini boats to be grilled this weekend (notice, the least fav thing to do is last – hee hee).

Then I usually end my days by sitting in my recliner and working on the yarn projects again.  I never have just one going at a time.  Right now I am working on 5.  A couple of these are birthday gifts; a couple are going to be sold in my Etsy shop, and the other is one that I am actually doing just for me – woo hoo!

Tomorrow is supposed to be warmer and sunny (boo hoo), so I guess it’s time to do the “real work” – PROCESSING HARVEST  yum!


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I hate cell phones!  Having said that, I have come to rely on mine way too much.  I get notices on EVERYTHING about everyone – ridiculous!   But this is now a fact of my life.

One of the notices I get is of value.  I get breaking news information – local and the world (don’t care about national right now due to politics – another thing I hate!).  Well, the text I received a few moments ago was really exciting.

The Winter Park Ski Train is trying to run again. WOO HOO!!  (9 News Winter Park Train)

This is even better because I am not a skier.  Not anymore anyway.  I was back in the 70’s to 90’s, but you get to a certain point in your life when you realize that the fun is not worth the broken bones or joints (my case – joints).

I do love winter.  I love the mountains.  I love train rides.  I love sitting in the lodge with my hot toddy next to a huge fireplace watching someone fall on the slope.  I also have a great excuse – my 7- year old grandson!  He has never been on a train, and we really want to give him the experience.  If they decide to run it the full season, we may have to book tickets.

If you are coming to Colorado in the “snow season” I highly recommend using the train.  So much better than trying to drive those slopes with that amount of traffic.  Winter Park also has a ton of fun other stuff to do.  (Side funny: I caught news anchors on National Channel this morning singing a Christmas song – – – guess it just shows how desperate we all are to get rid of all the political B.S.!)

winter park snow scene

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I find it funny how sometimes I don’t even have to look at a calendar to know what time of the year it is.  It’s not the flowers or the trees; it’s our peacock.  I know, peacock?  Time of year?  This farm gal has gone off the deep end of a shallow pool – ha ha, not!

When it is very warm or very cold the peacock looks like this:

DSC_0022  DSC_0020

Full, beautiful bunch of tail feathers – definitely something to be proud of (and he is).  F.Y.I., they are very vain birds.  We catch him constantly sitting, staring at his reflection in our windows.  So wrong!

They also make great guard dogs.  Nothing gets close to or in our yards without this monster spouting out (if you have never heard one, go to the Denver Zoo -it’s loaded with them, and they are noisy).  The downside to that is we live next to an interstate highway, and on/off ramp for it, and a railroad track.  If any one of those makes an unusual sound (huge bang from train starting up, jake-brake from a semi trying to slow down, etc.), he squawks off.  During the day I don’t mind, but one a.m., I’m looking for a shoe to throw at him (he perches up in the tree outside my window at night – jerk!)!

Well, all I have to do is look for the tell-tale signs in the yard:









And I will know EXACTLY what time of year it is…

It’s peacock humiliation time – WOOO HOOO!!


Notice how even he does not want to show his face when his tail looks like this – LMAO!  All of the feathers will drop off before the temps get much lower.  Then he will start to put on new ones before winter.  In the spring we go through the same process – PEACOCK FEATHERS EVERYWHERE!

We had hundreds of them before the fire (boo hoo, all gone), and I was worried.  Silly me!

p feathers 1-yr 8-16-16

This is what we have collected just this year.  The last two years we just let them fly.  This is the feathers of two molting’s sitting there.  Going to have to get a bigger pot to put them in soon – eeek!


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Make Erie Ooo Sound Here!!

Thursday, June 23, 2016, approximately 5:00 p.m.

Phase One: The wind (from hell)-

DSC_0003 (1).JPG

(duh me – next time I really should do a video of this to show the wind – LOL).

The trees were all being sucked toward the northwest (this storm).  Whipping around really good!

Phase 2: Moving Fast –


Clouds were swirling in all directions, but luckily not in any circles! Phew!! (wipe brow here)

Phase 3: Moving Closer (too close for comfort)-


The tree line in the background is the back edge of our property.  The heavy/dark gray streaks are the tons of rain heading our way.

Phase 4: Ah – what – huh?

6-23-16 WILD STORM 2

The rain was now falling, but from the other direction (I didn’t notice the clouds behind me to the south)?  Apparently, that was the first wave that came through when I ran out to shut everything down and close up.  So while taking these pics, my back was getting drenched – oh joy (yes sarcasm)!?!

The storm I was chasing was now almost black up in the clouds.  I got right up to our tree line and then – – – disappeared???

It was almost like someone had a huge bucket they had dumped up in the sky and it just ran out – that quick.

I shouldn’t be so surprised by Colorado storms anymore.  Several years back we were sitting out on our front patio watching the storms and cars go by.  Then we noticed that it was raining fairly hard across the street, but not a drop on our side – how wild – and fun!

When I was about eight years old on our farm in Wisconsin, I watched a tornado dance across our back yard.  Saw it take out the tree house before my older sister grabbed my arm screaming at me that I was an idiot – so true (hee hee and very proud of it!).  Just love watching the skies!





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By George, I Think We Got It – Maybe?

Well, we finally got to it.  Cleaned up the first major plot (it’s about 20’ long, 2-1/2’ wide) using the “weedless gardening method”.  Corn, beans, and cucs (The Three Sisters) are in here.  We are about a month late on the corn, so it will be interesting to see how it grows.

corn beans cucs weedless plot.jpg

The high grassy area next to this one is actually 2 more plots and two more walkways.  I still find it amazing how fast the weeds can come back.  The posts to the east of that area mark where the raspberries are.  We just started them a couple of years ago, but they are also filled with weeds.  East of that is three more walkways with two rows of field fencing (for those that do not know – that is fence about 4 feet high made up of 4”x4” squares, non-electric) which once held dozens of heirloom tomato plants.  We have the plants safe in the greenhouse, but they must come out soon – getting too big for their britches in there, sneaky buggers.

The potatoes that I started the weedless gardening method on are doing outstanding, even by the horseradish:

horseraddish n tadders 6-2-16.jpg

There are weeds around the plot, but only a small amount actually in the plot.  The potatoes are about 10” high already- woohoo.  Oh, and, yes, that is our horseradish at the top.  It is getting ready to flower, which is a first for us.  We have had it for several years now.  IT decided where “it” was going to be planted (true story).  We had it about 10 feet to the east of this spot originally.  It began spreading to the west all on its own.  Not as bad as the mint, mind you, but moving non-the-less. (Hee hee, maybe I should write a scary movie based on this? Lol).  It finally settled here, so we created a plot just for it.  Happily, it has not tried to run away to another spot since settling here.

Then we have these wild beauties:

widdows tears 6-2-16.jpg

We call them Widows Tears.  The pinkish/purple stems explode open first, looking like they are done – but wait – a green pod forms on the ends of the stems and this beautiful blue flower with yellow center opens up.  They do not last long, but the bees love them.  There are not thousands of them, but they do manage to scatter about a lot.

This is one of the bee favs:

catnip mint 6-2-16.jpg

It’s catnip mint (also a fav for our barn kitties when I am not in the garden).  Can you spot the bee?  There were several bees at that corner of the plant (stands about 2 feet high), but they would not stop moving about – grrr, ha ha!

This amazing thing (amazing that it is alive) resides in the front yard:

orange bush 6-2-16.jpg

A local hardware store was going to throw away some end-of-year stuff a couple of years back.  We happened to be there and made an offer on several of the bushes.  Most looked like they were dead, but we managed to salvage several.  This wonder is one of the saved.  Have no clue what it is, but it is about 4 feet high, and it gets these beautiful white/yellow flowers about the size of a quarter.  They smell like oranges?!  One of the others that we saved was the blue sea mist that all the butterflies loved last fall (here is the post: Where did they all come from?. If you want to see our little miracle bush.)

Well, here are my wishes for you all today:

  • No more severe storms, pretty sure we are all fed up with them (time to do our naked dance around the fire pit in the middle of the night – eeek, oh no – no one wants to see that!)
  • All the plants that you are putting in late like ours, will grow excellently (is that a word?)
  • You get just enough rain and sunshine to stuff your pantries with your own food in the fall.
  • And, most important, you have fun doing it all!

Well, I’m going back out now to try to tackle the other ½ of our 5 acres – me and my “Knight in Shining Armor” –  riding John Deere mower – woo hoo!  Nothing runs like a Deere, especially me!

Happy Green Thumbing!

burgandy bearded iris 5-30-16.jpg

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Yes, it is a maneuver (For anyone that has ever watched Eddie Izzard stand-up comedy – this is perfectly stated here)! Someone somewhere has decreed that you must gain weight back quickly after it has cost you great time, pain, and effort to get it off! Jerks!!

I do not normally give a flying monkey butt about what people think about me or the way I look. I have fun!! When I dig in the dirt, I get dirty. When I clean the house, I get dusty. When I build or tear apart something for the farm, I get hot and (yes girls) sweaty. You would think that with all of that going on I would be the size of a twig – Nooot!

It is my birthday today! I now have the following:

  • Right shoulder – complete reverse replacement.
  • Left shoulder – gut/clean-up for bone spurs.
  • Right and left shoulder both – front tendons cut due to arthritis pulling them too far forward. (can lift things to a point, not as much weight and not at a certain angle – unfortunately, coffee pots are at the angle so now it takes two hands for my morning boost – boo hoo!)
  • Both knees – complete replacements.
  • Half my left foot – replaced with a metal plate, pins and joints.
  • All of the above due to osteoarthritis – oh lucky me!

Oops, almost forgot

  • Left index finger – half amputated from a severe infection (never try this one at home kiddies). The only bummers with this one are my typing (used to be over 100 wpm, not no more) and my yarn work (though this part is sometimes fun to watch – pick up the yarn with your left index finger and maneuver it over the needle – ya right?!). Luckily can still dig in the dirt!

All of the stuff bulleted above happened within a 1-year time and began just a couple months after our fire loss of 2014. Oddly enough, I am in a happy, happy, joy, joy mood today – what’s up with that?

peanuts happy dance

Before all of this hit, I had lost over 40 pounds doing physically hard work and my new jobs, which was the biggest thrill of doing them! It took over two years to get it down that much.

Well, I thought I was smart (idiot!), having the left foot done as soon as I was able to tolerate the left knee pain, but was semi-bed ridden for 3+ months for healing time. I was not allowed to put ANY pressure on the foot at all. I tried crutches – oops, not that coordinated (help, I fell and couldn’t get up because I couldn’t stop laughing at myself on the floor), then bought a “knee scooter” – BEST INVENTION EVER!!!

knee scooter

(you can see why he just had to fly around the house on it -p.s. love the basket!)

I got pretty good at the end of my 2nd month at whipping around on that hummer – weeee! My grandson loved it too, except he could actually sit on it and ride it around. Didn’t care until I needed to go to the bathroom, then somehow it was always out-of-reach? (little bugger!)

During this “down time,” I managed to gain back all the weight I worked so hard on getting off. My big question here is – why? I tried hard to watch what I ate, but the body decided it just did not like the idea of me lazin around.

It was a painfully long haul maneuvering (there’s that word again-grr), the metal and plastic parts. One of the first dumbest stunts was opening a door too fast and too far back! Swung that sucker wide and popped my right shoulder right out of socket – now doesn’t that just look pretty??!!! It sticks out like a 2nd head popping out of my shoulder. Can you say OUCH! Oh and here’s the other kicker – it doesn’t just “pop” back in – nooooo – I have to maneuver it around – gently – to get it to slide back in. Hard lesson learned real fast! (my father would be proud – “you dumb shit” – flew out of my mouth instantly, for those of you that don’t know, it was his pet name for me – and yes, I am laughing hysterically writing this!)

shoulder reverse replacement

(hee hee – picture that plate sliding right off that ball toward your chest – “dumb shit!” – LOL)

Yes, Mo (my outstanding Therapist, and he even knows how to guilt me like a dad – lol), I am doing my therapy! However, with two years of neglected gardens screaming at me, I can’t wait for my mess to heal. Throw on my shorts, head sweat band, grab my tools and to the gardens I go! I think I have subconsciously taught myself to watch how much I pick up, how I pick it up and how I maneuver (that wonderful “m” word once again attacks). So me, my metal and plastic parts, my wrinkles, and lightly graying hairs hope you all have such fun birthdays as this! (Oh, and it’s raining with a chance of snow – grr!)

cake silly face


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I love getting, what I like to call, left-field information! This is the stuff that you would not normally dig up, or even think to dig up. Such is the case of a recent email from my family – – -“ April 20th, 2016 will be a night of the “GREEN MOON”…this appearance only happens about every 420 years and will only last about 90 minutes.

green moon

So, being the OCD researcher that I am, I went digging for more information and found this on the website:

There are several versions this (completely untrue) story, and we’ve gotten many questions about it from within our community, from people wanting to know if it’s true. Here’s the main version: the moon will appear green for the first time in 420 years on April 20, 2016. True? No, not even kinda. Snopes called it:

… entirely humorous in nature.

And it is pretty funny when you think about April 20 (4-20) and 420 years, and realize that 420 is a code word for marijuana (invented, according to Urban Dictionary, by “dozen pot-smoking wiseacres” at San Rafael High School in 1971) and that the date April 20 has special meaning to some as Weed Day.

All of that notwithstanding, many appear to be taking April 20, 2016, green moon literally.

And we repeat … it’s not true.

pot moon

Sad but true – it’s not real – boo hoo hoo! I love watching the moon, especially on a perfect fall evening. The crispness in the air, maybe a distant owl hooting, calm (or no) breeze, the smells of the fading harvest starting to diminish, and that big glowing moon up above. We have a couple of fire pits so, of course, at least one would be crackling. It feels like my younger camping out days, but now with the modern conveniences (mainly indoor toilets – what a relief! – yes, pun intended, sorry.)

I have seen bright white ones, ones that appeared so HUGE that you could almost reach out and touch it. Blood moons (ahh, brings out that little-hidden witch in me – hee hee), Blue moons, and, of course, Circle moons.

Blood Moon   Blue Moon

Circle moons are the type of which my mother would swear a storm was coming soon. She has me watching for it to this day. If you have a big bright moon, bright enough with all the right conditions to bring on what looks like an outer ring around it – that is your circle moon. Now check and see if there are any stars in that space between the moon and its outer circle. Count the number of starts and that is supposed to be the number of days until your storm. See – left field information – gotta love it!

Circle Moon

Silly me forgot to check it last night. According to actual weather people, we are in for a wild one over the next several (yep – several) days. It is supposed to dump two months of wet on us in just a few days. Not real sure how I want to take that. We can always use more moisture here. Since all the spring sprouting is going on, it may be perfect timing. Then again, with the weird winters we have had, (and they hint this may hold snow in it) this could be the totally wrong time of year for a wicked freeze. Not really unusual here, just another year of bad timing on Mother Nature’s part.

So my Fellow Dirt Dwellers, hang around for a few days, and I will share with you what messes we can get into. Hope for at least a few puddles to jump in when it’s all over and the sun comes back?!

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This morning was a wakeup call for me and my attempts at taking pictures.  There had to be a couple of thousand Snow Geese flying north over out little farm and these are my shots:

3-3-16 snow geese 2

snow geese 1

3-3-16 snow geese 3

Pretty pitiful – but there are 2 major things wrong pertaining to these pictures:

1)      Winning a great Nikon D3200 Camera with extra DX lens does not make one an instant expert photographer

2)      All the Snow Geese flying north on March 3, 2016 is way abby-normal!

The first one I can fix by actually taking classes (I think they even have some online under Nikon?) to learn how to take better pics.  I could also splurge on a neat little video camera (Walmart has several to choose from, at pretty reasonable prices), then I could have also shared the cool sounds they were making with you.

The second one is the thought that worries me a bit.  This winter has been way to different, and I don’t think it’s just here in Colorado.  It’s normal to get 70 degrees one day and 30 the next from October through January, but to get 60+ and stay there IN FEBRUARY – and no Freeze at all –  now that’s just not normal.  We prep all year for the one to two week period of below freezing day and night, not this year.

Have I also told you that I am an amateur Nature Enthusiast?  I say amateur because I have never taken formal classes on the subject; however, I have lived on a working farm most of my life (My folks purchased the family farm when I was about 2, and my sister was born after we moved there so she has been at it since birth).

I am fascinated with all things nature and natural.  The critters that show up unexpectedly in our yard (can you say opossum!).  The deer that come out of the woods almost every sunset to frolic in the lower pasture (especially love watching in spring as they chase each other all around till dark).  The increasing numbers of good bugs that are showing up here every year (Praying Mantis, Ladybugs, Monarch Butterflies – and some are endangered species).  We do not use chemicals of any kind on our property, so maybe we have become the Favorite Bug Restaurant for the good guys (I can only hope!)?  Who knows why they come, I’m just glad the come.

The numbers of sightings have increase about 10-fold since we purchased our little property in 2000.  Then again we cannot take all the credit, the first 3 years we were here were the worst drought years Colorado had seen in 100+ years.  That may have been a contributing factor (oh sure, blame the drought).  However, all I know is that they are here now and in growing numbers.

So the geese flying north in masses makes me wonder what old (yes she is “old”) Mother Nature is up to now?

Mother Nature 1

Is she in a playful mood and deciding to bring a nice early spring?  Is she in a vengeful mood and going to trick us into thinking it is nice, then zap us with a wicked deep freeze in April (after everything is in bloom of course – happened before and not long ago.)?  I cannot blame her for wanting revenge, we the people have abused her for too long.  Some of us (wish there were more- boo hoo) have actually been trying to help her all our lives. 

I guess there’s no way to predict what she’s up too, so we will just keep doing what we do – garden naturally, and hope for the best! 

Maybe I will put a totem up for her in the gardens to try to appease her – how’s this?

totem 1

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Doug from UP(click here if you don’t get the Squirrel bit)

I maybe oldish but there are many benefits to age these days. One of the biggest benefits of my age is memory. No, I am not joking here (but it is funny – LOL), the adage is as you get older you lose your memory. Well, yes and no on that one.

I subscribe to MNN (Mother Nature Network), and one of their recent articles made me think: 7 Signs we are too dependent on technology. The sub-headline is the question: Remember when you actually knew your friends’ phone numbers? What remember? I still do know most all of my family and closest friends phone numbers, and even some addresses. Maybe it’s the math geek in me (or my OCD on lists of all kinds), but I have always been good at numbers. Who would have thought that I had any space left up there? (Hee, Hee!)


They then go on to talk about how much we depend on our internet, buy things through it blah-blah-blah…same old stuff. The other items on the list were also things that I had heard before and knew… BUT… the 3rd question really hit home for me. You don’t live in the moment. It was right! I have been so worried about getting the “picture” I was actually missing out on a large amount of other things going on around me.

I needed that shot of the bird in the bush, but missed the silly walk day my grandson and sister were doing. Those types of memories only happen in that rare moment of time, and then are gone forever.

silly walks

Now, just today 2-29-16, I went so cleverly to the local Post Office to mail a simple package to my other sister in Aurora – and what dummy put the wrong zip code on the label – yep, that would be me (yes, I am laughing hysterically at myself as I type this)! Got the name, street address, city and state just perfect – no cheating with an address book for me. Then slapped on MY zip code without even batting an eye. Took getting it all the way to the very smart Postal Lady to figure out just how “duh” I had been. At least, we both got a great laugh out of it (she had to point it out to me twice – double duh, for not paying attention).

So my Pre-Saint Pats day resolution (yep ½ Irish and proud of it – not sure mom would be right now – ha, ha, ha) – LIVE IN THE MOMENT – YA IDIOT! Stop my swirling brain long enough to get what’s going on right in front of me.

Funny, I still remember a time when I used to be proud of thinking and doing several things at one time – Multi Tasking – not no more, apple core – who’s your friend – ME! (Yes, that last bit is a Disney reference – check it out here! Hee, Hee) OH SURE – I remember the quote from a childhood memory, but can’t tell you what I had for lunch yesterday? Ok, I watch too many cartoons, so shoot me!

chip n dale

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