Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Raising the White Flag

Well, I'm back from another unintended break, but only temporarily. In fact, just long enough to say, I'm gonna have to take a little break. I didn't want to, but since I haven't been blogging much, I decided to make it official. Hence, the raising of the white flag. I surrender. Oh, how I hate saying that! 

But, before I surrender, you may be wondering what I have been up to. Well, last week, during the hottest week of the summer (so far), Hubby and I were up on a rooftop. A two-story high, steep roof. Not a fun place to be. He spent most of the time on the roof, while I sprinted gingerly climbed the ladder carrying a myriad of supplies that were needed. While I was climbing the ladder I wondered which was worse, to make 1000 trips up and down, or to be perched up on the top of a steep roof. But, when I was perched on top of the steep roof, I decided that I would much rather be drudging up and down the ladder. My job was to cut the shingles to size to make the process go faster. I'm getting really good at it. We should be able to really fly when we do our roof this next week! After that roof job, our single story roof job will seem like a piece of cake!

And speaking of cake, (wasn't that a nice transition?) this is what I am going to attempt to make for the 4th of July:

I found this on Pinterest. I'll let you know how successful or unsuccessful my attempt was. I'm hoping it slightly resembles the flag, but we'll see. 

Son, JT, and Sweetie Pie will be arriving on Saturday. Between now and Saturday I have to get ready for a yard sale (Wednesday thru Friday),and get the house cleaned. What the heck am I thinking??? Well, it must be done, otherwise there is no place for Sweetie Pie and Son to sleep, because all of our yard sale junk treasures are being stored in the "living room". 

I'm not even going to discuss the garden! Sigh Everywhere I look there is work and more work to do. Next year, HOPEFULLY, we won't be so overwhelmed.

I've also be editing two books, not mine - are you crazy? Amazing Daughter is getting ready to publish her first book. I'm so excited for her. Her dream is coming true. 

Also, one of my SILs has written a book. She passed a copy (rough draft) out to all the family members to read, to get everyone's opinion. I'm having a hard time reading it without being in "edit mode". She assured us that she wants honest opinions. So, she will either hate Amazing Daughter and I, or love us. But, when someone says, "Give me your honest opinion", and you do, you discover they really didn't want honesty. And, bye-bye friendship. I like her story, but...what do I say now? Let's say it needs more development.  I hope it doesn't make me sound judgemental, because I could never begin to write a book.

I'm reading another book, no editing needed! Remember that little contest a few weeks ago over at Craziness Abounds? Well, I won first place, by default. The first place winner already had her book, so she graciously said someone else could have it. I came in second place, so I recieved not only the just released book, "More Nonsense", but also the first book, "Just Nonsense", by my wonderful friend, Melynda Fluery. And, they are great, entertaining books. I'm loving them. You can get your copy by clicking on the book at the top of my    blog.

Well, it is time for me to start carrying stuff out of the basement and out of the living room to get ready for the yard sale tomorrow. Hubby is busy scraping off shingles as I type this, so I will be setting up the yard sale by myself. At least I'll be on the ground!

I am missing you all, my bloggy friends, and hope to be back to visit you come mid-(or late-) July. To all my American friends, have a wonderful Independence Day, and celebrate by reading the "Declaration of Independence".

Oh, in case you are wondering, we now have a full and functioning bathroom! YAY! Pictures will be forthcoming when I return!

I hate to say good-by, so I'm dragging it out. I do the same thing when I'm talking on the phone. It drives my kids crazy. Finally, they will tell me, "Are you going to say good-bye or not? You said your first good-bye 30 minutes ago!" 

OHH-KAAAY! Ta-ta for now. Talk to you again in a few weeks! 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Discombobulated Again

Dontcha just love that word? It is such a fun word to say, and describes my mental state quite well.

Just thought I'd give you a little tour around the place, and you will understand my discombobulation. We are still in disarray from moving (back in February! sigh) but we are making great progress. With every move we've made (hey, isn't that a song?) Hubby and I have always done some kind of remodeling and tweaking. And, with every remodel and tweak, we've said, "The next time we do this, we are NOT going to live in it while we are 'tweaking'." ROFLMBO!! That has never happened. Ever. 

So, here we are, again, living under construction. And, to make matters just a smidgen worse, we are also trying to get the outside in order. So, if it rains, we work inside, if the sun is shining, we work outside. 

This little picture is hanging in our hallway. It's rather appropriate for us at this time. It was made by my artsy-fartsy creative daughter

Oh. One more thing. You can only visit if you promise not to judge us as pigs living in squalor, (even though it might look like it.) (Is this small print hard on your eyes? Because I can hardly see what I'm typing!)

Did you solemnly swear? OK. You can come in.
But first, here what the house looked like when we bought it. It had been empty for 18 months or so and needed some TLC.

The fields were also in very tough shape.

 This is the dining room going into the living room.

Now, everything is painted, but it still looks a bit (ok, a lot) like a storage garage. 

This is the sight that greats you as you walk through the front door. Garage sale collections - except for the flag. We're waiting to get the house painted before we hang up the flag.
 Then you work your way in through the narrow pathway
Now, if you turn around, you will see another view of the living room/storage for the bathroom/storage for the garage sale stuff. Back on the far wall is a queen size mattress, waiting for a new home or to be dragged out to the trash. Continuing clockwise is our new toilet - can't wait for that to be installed. Then the couch that no one sits in, because #1 - the TV died, and #2 - why would you want to sit and look at the bathroom furnishings? And, then we have the bathroom cabinet. Very comfy, huh?

Behind the cabinet, more garage sale junk amazing one-of-a-kind items. Where do you put all that stuff to get rid of? The garage? Nope. Ours is full of man stuff.
 This is the dining room, (I use the term loosely) with all the tile for the bathroom threatening to takeover the hallway.

And, here is a collection of tools on what some people might call a dining table. If you look carefully, you will notice a small arrangement of sunflowers in the midst of chaos. At one time, for a brief moment, this piece of furniture was actually used as a dining room table. Weird, huh?

Another picture of our almost finished kitchen, just to show that I do have a place that is clean!

 Ahhh, let's move outside and get a breath of fresh air, shall we? This is the view from my kitchen window, with one of our redbud trees in the background.

 I transplanted some of the wild raspberry bushes (far left) from our last place. They are doing quite nicely and are loaded with lots of berries. In the center, we're planting 10 blackberry bushes (said to produce 1-2 bushels per bush!), and to the right is our garden/weed patch. We started planting at both ends, working toward the middle. Don't ask me why.

 Another view of our garden. The green parts are weeds, 90% of which are thistles! The other 10% is some kind of vile weed with a root system that reaches to China.
So, we have been quite busy the past few months. And, still have a lot more work to do. Hopefully, by the time the snow flies, we can take a breather and relax.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Tasty Tuesday - Rhubarb

Rhubarb. The name does not sound appealing. Ruuuuu-barb. When I was young, many moons ago, I remember hearing my Grandma talking about rhubarb pie. Now, I liked pie, but rhubarb always sounded disgusting to me. I turned my nose up at it and walked away. This behavior is highly unusual for me.

However, over the past several years I have been the recipient of large amounts of rhubarb. I chop it up and stick it in the freezer and forgetaboutit. Recently, a big tub of rhubarb has again found its way to my kitchen.

 But, I also found a recipe that sounded kinda good. Oh no. It has happened. I am old. Because it seems only old people like the stuff. Well, I won't say I'm a huge fan of rhubarb, but, I can eat a little now and again. And, with the supply that is now in my freezer, I need to start accumulating some good recipes.

This is what I made:

Oma's Rhubarb Cake

Prep Time: 30 min.
Cook Time: 45 min. 
Servings 12

1 1/4 cups sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups flour
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup sour cream (I used 1/2c vanilla yogurt & 1/2 c. sour cream b/c I was low on sour cream)
3 cups diced rhubarb

1 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup flour
ground cinnamon for dusting
(I added 1/4 cup old fashioned oats - should have also added a little more butter)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 9x13 baking dish.

In large bowl, stir together 1 1/4 cups sugar, baking soda, salat and 2 cups flour. Stir in eggs and sour cream until smooth, then fold in the rhubarb. Pour into the prepared dish and spread evenly.

My batter was not very spreadable, just so you know.

In a smaller abowl, stir together the remaining cup of sugar and butter until smooth. Stir in 1/4 cup flour (and oatmeal, if you like) until the mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle the mixture on top of the cake and dust lightly with cinnamon.

Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes. (Much longer if you like the topping a little crispy.)

This was rather tasty - especially with whipped cream and white chocolate drizzled over it. Not bad. Not bad at all.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Contest begins today

My good and crazy friend is having a contest today. The prize is a copy of her book. Just glance over to the right, and you will see a picture of her book.

The contest is of other crazy-loving people, being crazy while reading her book. Alas, I do not have her book...yet. But I do have a crazy picture. I'm wearing a purple hat and holding a knife. That's all I'm going to say. The competition is fierce. Cute kids. Cute animals. A woman wearing Depends. Heroes. Then there's little ol' me. So, pop over there, and by "there" I mean here. And, vote for #4 - if that's the one with the purple hat and knife weilding goof-ball. (The last time I was in a contest, I gave the wrong number.)

Voting is today and Tuesday. Hope to see you there!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Awesome Day for Crazy!

If you like crazy like I like crazy... that sounds like it could be a song. But, I digress. Today is a very special day for a very special crazy lady, who I am happy to call my friend. Did you know that if you google "crazy" her blog is the first thing that comes up?

Melynda Fluery is having her second book , More Nonsense, released today. If you check over there to the right, you can see a picture right there! 

She is an amazing woman with a great sense of humor. Check out her book today! She also writes a great blog.  Really. Check her out. You won't regret it!

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