our view

our view

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Rain, Rain And More Rain

After spending two weeks away from the farm I heard we had missed a lot of rain but we got to experience the rain we missed yesterday.  What was weird is that it would rain when least expected. An example would be that it was sunny and I went down to visit Lisa and while I was at her house it just began to pour.  That was the pattern of the day.  So we ran in and out dodging the rain but we managed to get the little camper and car unloaded and four loads of laundry done.  So even though it rained we still had a productive day.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

We Are Back At The Farm

After a long day of driving, yesterday, we are back at the farm.  We pulled in just before dark last night and decided to just unload what we may need.  Today we will unload the rest of the car and little cabin on wheels, do laundry, and check out the farm to see what has happened around here while we were gone.  It will be a busy day getting settled back at the farm.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Returning To The Farm

Today we begin our final leg of our 3/5's GreatvLakes trip as we head for the farm.  We have not decided to do it in one day or two so we will either be back at the farm late tonight or early afternoon on Tuesday.  Only the road will decide and how well the drive goes.  Tennessee, here we come!

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Rain Delay

Due to a lot of rain happening at the farm not much else has.  The rain has stopped George from doing much outside and the garden only needs harvesting every six days so i guess you could say that the farm is on a rain delay.  i guess this is mother nature's way of making sure everyone gets a break at the farm.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Farm Happenings

So, what is going on at the farm?  That is a really good question and one that I will answer in a couple of days when we return to the farm.  Until then maybe I should make something up so here it goes:
A mass landing of alien ships have landed in the garden and have started to destroy producing plants. These aliens have dusquised themselves as squash bugs and have discovered that the stems of Zucchini, pumpkin, yellow squash, acorn squash and butternut squash are delishious and can feed the whole alien nation.
And that is what is happening at the farm!

Friday, August 11, 2017

The Food Saver

A few weeks ago on Facebook I saw a video on a new product that helps protect food.  I thought it was so great and shared in on Facebook; which is the only way to save things for later. Anyway, my wonderful, beautiful, talented, charming daughter (just in case she reads this) ordered me some as a surprise and it was and I love it.  They work great and they do keep the food fresher.  This food saver is great when you need half a tomato, cucumber, pepper or onion and don't feel like cutting up the rest.  Just place a food saver lid on the other half and it keeps it fresh until you use it in the next couple of days.  She ordered them from Amazon which ended up costing less then ordering directly from the food saver site.  Thank you Jenny for the great gift.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

We Have Tomato Sauce

We have tomato sauce thanks to Lisa making some the other day.  Last year we made quite a few jars but with the garden under producing this year our tomato sauce is slim.  The good thing is she will have some jars to enjoy. I know I said I would have the zucchini lasagna recipe today but I am having wifi issues so look for the recipe tomorrow or Saturday.  By postponing the recipe I have been adding up the ingredients.  We have zucchini and we have tomato sauce.  I know we can make cheese so; Lisa are you up to it?  Haha

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Zucchini Bats

I am not sure if I could make up a new game using zucchinis as bats but if I could we could grow them.  In a two day period we have had some zucchinis that grew from 6 inches to almost 15 inches long.  I have no idea why but we were shocked when we went down to pick them.  So what do you do with a huge zucchini?  Well you takes pictures then play with it a bit but then you make it into zucchini lasagna noodles and make lasagna.  Come back tomorrow for the recipe.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

An Anniversary Is Coming Up!

Lisa & George just celebrated their 30th Wedding anniversary last week and Tim and I will be celebrating our 34th wedding anniversary next Sunday but neither one of these is what I am talking about.  The anniversary I am talking about is this blog and Tim & I arriving at the farm; can you believe it will be three years?  During this month I will share some memories of the past three years at the farm along with our everyday tales!  Three years soon?  WOW!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Farm Flashback - The Bear

We now have three bears at the farm.  Are we concerned?  Not at all in a matter of fact we wanted these bears at the farm.  Now I know I said three but right now I can only reveal one.  Lisa's birthday present from George and made just for her; cutest bear ever! It hangs out by the back door on the porch welcoming all who comes and visits...or does he???

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Bread & Butter Pickles - Low Carb

While I am out seeing the great North Lisa has been busy making more pickles.  This batch of pickles  are Bread & Butter pickles but she made them low carb by replacing the sugar with Splenda.  She made 6 quarts and last night was the true test of how they turned out.  She said they were really good and George could not tell the difference from the sugar B&B's.  Last year we made some B&B's with stevia and they were awful; we threw them out. I guess this year we will be enjoying the B&B's instead of tossing them.  Way to go Lisa!

Saturday, August 5, 2017

No News Is Good News

I go by the old saying "no news is good news" a lot because I figure if I don't hear from anyone, like friends or family, that all is well.  In most cases it is.  So since I am not at the farm I cannot share what is going on so I am using the no news thing and report nothing for today.  Mean while, please follow my travel blog as Tim and I are having a great trip.  Travels With Ruth :
travelswithruth-ruth.blogspot.com.    We start our third leg of our trip!

Friday, August 4, 2017

A Nice Harvest

Since I am on vacation Lisa had to harvest on her own and it looks like it was a good one and she will be busy processing the harvest.  There is a good amount of tomatoes and cucumbers which means one thing...pickles and tomato sauce.  Our pickles, although not as many as last year, are good and The tomato sauce should be too if Lisa uses the same recipe.  We have done one substitution this year.  Instead of using sugar we are using spleda.  With Lisa watching her carbs this switch works well and the taste is still good.  Have fun Lisa!

Thursday, August 3, 2017

The Cantaloupe Is Great!

Even though we have been struggling with the garden the cantaloupe has been doing well and I have been fortunate enough to enjoy it.  I have had both kinds now; the regular size and the mini.  We even had enough before I left on my trip to take with and enjoy on the road.  There will a lot more cantaloupe before I get back but Lisa will make sure someone will be able to enjoy it.  Whoever does, they are the lucky ones. 

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Welcome Chance

While Lisa and our neighbor Cheryl were out walking the other day they came upon a tiny kitten that had been abandon along the side of the road.  This is the second kitten they have found in the last month.  The first kitten they found they gave to a neighbor.  This kitten has been welcomed into Lisa's home and joins Angel, their 14 year old cat and Roxie their 3 year old dog.  Chance is four weeks old and weighs about 1 pound.  He had been bathed to get rid of the fleas and is being dewormed.  He still need special kitten food because he is so young but with the loving family that has just adopted him he will be receiving all the love and support needed.  Welcome Chance!

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

The Dirt Has Been Moved

The backhoe has been at the farm for over a week now and  of  the dirt moving project has been completed but it took a real effort to get it completed.  The day after receiving the backhoe it broke down and it took two days to get it repaired.  Once the backhoe was repaired the dump truck decided to break down.  The good thing with the dump truck is that Tim was able to fix what broke.  With all the set backs the dirt moving project did get completed and the backhoe was picked up this morning. 
Now there is a big turn around area down by George's house so even if a semi truck comes to the farm it can turn around.  The RV pad has been expanded and will create a nice area big enough for the RV, the shed and a nice yard for the dogs.  Great job George and Tim!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Preparing For The 3/5's Great Lakes Trip

Tim and I are getting ready for the 3/5's Great Lakes Trip that starts tomorrow.  We will be taking the Little Cabin On Wheels and heading north to Michigan and Wisconsin where we will spend two weeks traveling through.  We chose Michigan because we have not visited that state during our travels and Wisconsin will be family visits.  It is called the 3/5's Great Lakes trip because during our travels we will be visit 3 of the 5 Great Lakes; Lake Huron, Lake Michigan and Lake Superior.  We spent some of yesterday and will spend all day today packing for the trip.  I will still be keeping up with this blog everyday but to follow along with us on our trip please follow my Travels With Ruth blog:  travelswithruth-ruth.blogspot.com.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Garden Time

The garden is slowly coming along and our harvesting is hit and miss.  As you know we have lost one pumpkin plant and two zucchini plants but we have also lost half of the corn, all of the green beans and the squash is getting iffy.  The culprits, well let's just say between the squash bugs, raccoons, and poor nutrients in the soil this year's garden is struggling along.  We have already been making plans for next year's garden and we know what we have to do to get rid of some pests.  George has a plan to get nutrients back in the soil so next year's garden should be a lot better.  As far as this year's garden we will appreciate all we get from it when we harvest.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Dunkirk

We went to see the movie "Dunkirk" yesterday and not really knowing the story I had to closely follow the movie.  It was an amazing feat that the British people did to save their own and it showed the cruelty of war.  What amazed me was some of the protocols of war and the handling of the troops.  Seeing 400,000 men standing on a beach waiting for the boats to come rescue them all while the German planes fly over head dropping bombs and taking target practice with them showed the bravery and the will to survive these men had.  It was a powerful story and depicted in a way to show what these brave men endured to stop Germany.  It has given me even more respect for the men and women who are serving or have served in our Military.  Thank you!

Friday, July 28, 2017

Rest In Peace Pumpkins

We had an emotional day in the garden.  We had to say good bye to one of the pumpkins plants and it looks like we may be doing the same to our other one.  The culprit or murderer?  The squash bug!  This is the second year we have planted pumpkins and this is the second year we have been defeated by the squash bug.  The pumpkin plant that was removed yesterday had six pumpkins on it with four looking really good, one had already been eaten by some baby squash bugs and one that was still green and growing.  After much research we do now know how to treat the soil for next year and what we need to do battle with the squash bugs.  So, this is a warning to the squash bugs.  Be afraid...be very afraid because we will be hunting you and killing you to rid you from our garden.
For now, rest in peace Pumpkins!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

The Relish Is A Success

We taste tested both relishes yesterday and they were both delicious.  The dill pickle relish had a great dill flavor and is going to be very good on burgers, hot dogs, sausages and added to tuna salad.  The zucchini relish is the star of the relishes.  It is sweet and delicious and will be good on anything and everything.  It was good alone too.  Last year we were at a craft show in Gatlinburg and purchase some zucchini relish.  The recipe called to mix it with cream cheese which we did.  It was a great dip or spread for crackers.  We will be doing this with our relish this week end.  The zucchini relish was so good we are making more today.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Making Zucchini Relish

It was another first for Lisa and I.  We made Zucchini relish yesterday and we will know sometime today how it turned out.  I tried zucchini relish last year for the first time and it was good.  It was even better mixed up with cream cheese as a dip or spread on a cracker.  It was not hard at all and it basically followed the same process as when we made pickle relish on Monday.  If both relishes turn out to be good we will have a dilemma of what to make...relish or pickles.  Check back and see how the relishes, dill pickle and zucchini, tasted!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Making Pickle Relish

Making pickle relish is a completely different process then making pickles.  I was surprised on how different it was.  With pickles you pack the jars, make the brine and pour it into the jars, process, cool and that is it.  With relish you chop up the cucumbers, thanks to the food processor it made this part easy, place the chopped cucumber in a bowl with salt and turmeric, add water, cover and let it sit for two hours.  After two hours you rinse and then add other ingredients to a large pot along with the chopped cucumbers and cook on the stove.  After the pickle mixture is cooked it gets placed in jars then processed and cool.  Later today Lisa and I will test out our dill pickle relish.  Today, we will try something new again- zucchini relish.

Monday, July 24, 2017

The Dirt Is Moving

George is making progress with getting the dirt moved dispite the fact that the backhoe that he rented has given him nothing but trouble.  Tim and George have had to do a lot of repairs to keep the backhoe going.  When calling the rental place they were of no help.  Luckily George has pretty much gotten what he wanted done but since he will be responsible if the backhoe breaks he has decided to quit using it before that happens and at the rate the backhoe is leaking fluids and tires going flat why take the chance.  The RV area has been beefed up with a lot more dirt and the pond is gone.  Also his driveway is bigger with a turn around spot.  A definate improvement!  Way to go George & Tim!

Sunday, July 23, 2017

The Slab Is Poured

The cement slab needed for the garage floor at George and Lisa's house was a three day project.  The first day a team came out and spent a couple of hours setting up the forms for the garage floor.  The next day, very early as promised, a big crew showed up and prepared the area and then the cement truck showed up and the slab was started.  It took two loads from the cement truck and about 6 hours work on pouring, smoothing and continual smoothing of the slab.  On the third day, again early, one guy came out and added cuts in the slab.  With that, the slab is almost ready to be built on.  It looks huge but when it is all done George and Lisa will have a great three car garage.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Happy Birthday Lisa!

Today is Lisa's Birthday and I want to take this opportunity to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY LISA!!!
There has been a lot going on around the farm these past few days and while George has the backhoe things around the farm will be busy.  However, there will be a break to celebrate Lisa's birthday today with dinner, dessert and presents.  First present today; not having to harvest!
Lisa, Tim and I are truly blessed to have you as our very good friend and we cherish our friendship so very much!  HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

Friday, July 21, 2017

The Backhoe Has Arrived

The backhoe arrive early yesterday morning and George went right to work.  He is filling in the pond that was created by his original digging a couple of years ago and making a cul de sac to make it easier to turn around down at his house.  He is also getting ready to build a three car garage.  He wanted to get as much done yesterday where the new garage is going because the cement truck showed up early this morning.  Things are happening at the farm.  Check back tomorrow for an update!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

In A Waiting Mode

Now that the two big projects are underway the prep work has been completed and now it is a waiting game.  The backhoe should arrive sometime this morning and the team coming out to pour concrete should also be here some time today.  If they all come at once this will be a busy place.  So we are in a waiting mode to see what happens next.  Meanwhile, Lisa will be busy prepping veggies (squash, green peppers and green beans) for freezing.  There is an abundance of yellow squash and she makes a squash casserole that I will share the recipe with you next week.  Maybe I can even get her zucchini lasagna recipe to share too.  She made it last night and it was delicious! Thanks for dinner Lisa!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Something New Is Going On

George and Tim are going to be busy for a little while.  Two major projects have or will begin in the next couple of days.  The first project is an ongoing one dealing with moving dirt and creating spaces.  Once the backhoe gets delivered George and Tim will be busy moving dirt and continuing to build up the RV spot at the top of the hill where Travis's place is.  If you remember that spot was created last fall but did not settle well.  After sitting all winter and spring it is ready for more dirt to build it up where it will then settle again for a while.
The second project is brand new and was just created over the week end.  George is expanding on his home building a two car garage.  To do so the existing deck, that has never really been used, needed to be removed along with the wood storage area.  Later today the emptyspace created will be poured with concrete for the pad of the garage then laborers will be here to stud the walls of the garage. 
So, as you can see there is a lot going on at the farm and that is not even mentioning the harvest that Lisa and I picked yesterday.  It is a busy, busy farm right now!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Visiting The Sunflower Fields

In Knoxville, TN there is an area of the city that has 331 acres devoted to wildlife development.  Each year the River Wildlife Management Area plants fields of sunflowers. The sunflowers are beneficial for attacting Mourning Doves, Gold Finches, Northern Cardinals, Indigo Buntings and other songbirds. It also attracts deer and turkeys.  When the sunflowers are in bloom they also attract thousands of visitors a day.  It is really something to see and to walk among the sunflowers towering over you is a cool feeling.  Lisa and I visited the fields for the first time last year but did not see all the fields.  Yesterday we went back to see the fields we missed.  Although we caught the sunflowers towards the end of their season we still loved walking all the fields and enjoying the sunflowers. The fields of sunflowers are still an awesome sight and seeing all the birds flying around and the bees pollinating the flowers is Amazing.  We will be back next year!

Monday, July 17, 2017

We Have Cucumbers

We have cucumbers which means one thing; there will be pickling!  We decided to let the garden go one more day before picking it and we are glad we did.  We were able to pick enough pickling cucumbers to be able to pickle.  Being pickle queens it means a lot to us.  We also got the first okra which all I can say is yuck!  The harvest was pretty good.  Unfortunately, we have raccoons so I will keep a raccoon counter, posted at the side, to keep track of what was trapped and released by the river. We are at five so far in our first week.  Look for pickles soon!

Look for the next chapter to the "Bowling Shoe Saga" later this week!  It will be a page turner!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Spider-man Homecoming

We went and saw Spider-Man Homecoming yesterday and it was good and the latest of the Marvel movies.  This younger Spider-Man was introduced in the latest Avengers movie and now, along with several other newer characters from that movie we get to know the story of Spider-Man.  This movie was good but a bit different from the other Spider-Man movies.  In the movie Tony Stark played a bigger role then expected but it helped the movie.  There is also a glimpse of what may come in the next Avengers movie.  If you are a fan of the Marvel movies then definitely go see this movie.  One side note with the audience yesterday that was so cute.  In the movie the work "porn" was said.  A little boy sitting behind us asked his mom what porn was.  She answered with corn, he said corn.  The other little boy sitting next to his brother said to his brother I though I heard porn and the father spoke up and said corn also.  Cute and the right way to handle it in my opinion.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Trying Hello Fresh

Tim and I tried Hello Fresh a new way of eating.  Hello Fresh is a mail order company that delivers fresh ingredients to your door to prepare dinner.  They call themselves the "farm-to-box" company that sends you fresh ingredients that inspire great meals.  You sign up and order the meals on line then you receive a box full of ingredients and easy to follow recipes to make the meals you chose.  I was fortunate enough to receive a free 3 night meal plan to try.  Once we received the box it is well packed, insulated and iced, to keep the ingredients fresh.  Each meal's ingredients are packaged separately except for the meat which is stored in a cooler area of the box.  UPS delivers the box to your door and the rest is up to you.  Our first meal was Carolina BBQ chicken with Mac& Cheese and green beans.  It was delicious, easy to fix - following the recipe, and I did not have to shop.  A three meal a week plan does run $59.95 a week so it is something that will not fit into our budget but if I could afford to I would subscribe for ease of meal planning, learning to cook new things and convenience.  If you get an opportunity to try this please do so.  Hello Fresh what a great way of eating fresh!

Friday, July 14, 2017

It Is Getting Better

The harvests are getting better.  Yesterday we harvested a couple of zucchini, some yellow squash, a cucumber, lots of green beans and tomatoes and a few green peppers.  It still isn't like our harvests last year but something is better than nothing.  We did lose the blueberries to either the birds or the deer. Either way, they are gone.  On the bright side the apple and peach trees are coming along nicely and this year we may have both apples and peaches!  So yes, the harvests are getting better!

Thursday, July 13, 2017

The Pickle Queens Are Back!

After an 11 month hiatus the Pickle Queens are back.  We had 5 pickling cucumbers to do something with so we decided to make Refrigerator dill pickles.  This was the first kind of pickling we had tried and now it is the way we start our pickling season making it three years in a row that we have done this method and it is very good and easy.  The process is simple: clean and slice the cucumbers, add some dill seed and minced garlic in the jar, add the cucumbers then make a brine and pour it into the jar.  Place the lids on the jars and place in the refrigerator.  24 hours later we have dill pickles.  We will test them out on Friday during our BBQ.  The Pickle Queens are back!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Wow, What A Difference!

The pickle Queens are still on vacation but are ready to get busy once we have enough picking cucumbers to pickle.  We did cut down by a couple of plants but we think the bed that we planted in lost a lot of its nutrients so it is taking longer for the plants to get going.  There are a ton of flowers on the plants which should eventually turn into cucumbers.  I will post a comparison picture of last year's picking compared to this year's picking.  Wow, what a difference!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Bowling Shoes Saga

Who knew bowling shoes would be so hard to get here at the farm.  Lisa is finding out the hard way.  She ordered bowling shoes for Dick's Sporting Goods on line because they do not sell bowling shoes in their stores.  I did the same thing and got mine without an issue but this is not the case for Lisa.  The first pair cane but they were a size seven.  She contacted Dick's which had her returning the shoes to a store for a quicker refund.  While she was at the store they ordered a new pair for her.  Well yesterday her new shoes arrived...in a size seven again.  Lisa spent 90 minutes on the phone trying to correct this situation. The outcome: new shoes were ordered at a reduced price,  she received 1000 points on her rewards card and she still has to return the wrong shoes to the store.  Returning the shoes to the store would not be a big issue if the store was just down the street but here it is a 45 minute drive to Morristown.  So the saga continues and now we all get to wait and see if the correct shoes will be delivered or not!  Check back and see!

Monday, July 10, 2017

It's Raccoon Season!!!

First thing this morning I got a text from George with a picture of a raccoon in one of the trapping cages.  This means just one thing...it's Raccoon Season!  Now this is not a happy season for us because it means we are back to battling the raccoons for our corn.  Last year 40 rows of corn was planted but we only got 12-15 ears of corn.  The raccoons got the rest.  So we are at war again and we are hoping this year to have more.  Raccoons really are bandits.  One down and who knows how many to go!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

The First Bountiful Harvest

Lisa and George picked the first bountiful harvest this year so far.  They picked more zucchini and yellow squash, cucumbers and the first batch of green beans.  We knew the beans were getting close to being picked but it was nice to see some that were ready.  We planted twice as many beans as last year so we are hoping that we get a lot.  The cucumbers are coming along but we are still not sure how much pickling we will actually do this year.  Once we get enough the "pickle queens" will be back in business.  Until then we may have to do something with yellow squash because that crop is doing very well.  Way to go Lisa and George on this harvest.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

An Easy DIY Decoration

Just before the 4th of July I came across a really easy project to do to decorate our 4th of July BBQ table.  Lisa helped and we made four decorative candle holders. We used 4 mason jars, we used the quart size, and purchased 4 small cloth U.S. Flags.  We also purchased some mod podge, colorful stones and some tealight candles.  We washed the jars and removed the flags from their rods.  We placed the flag in the middle of the jar then brushed a thin layer of mod podge over it and let it dry.  Once it was dried we put the stones in the bottom of the jar and placed a tealight on the stones and our easy DIY candle holder decoration was complete.  Try it!

Friday, July 7, 2017

We Have A Name

The puppy that found its way to the farm now has a name and a family.  Welcome Ajax, a six week old puppy that is flea ridden, needs to be de wormed and then needs to gain some weight.  The good thing is that Ajax is in good health otherwise and with clean up and loving Ajax is going to be great!  There was a decision that had to be made and that was who Ajax will belong to.  George & Lisa wanted him and so did Travis.  In the end Ajax is now Travis's dog and has two sisters now too; Nix and Gaia.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

The Farm Is Going To The Dogs

A little after 7:00 pm last night Travis had a visitor at his doorway,  A tiny puppy was sitting at his steps.  Now, we know none of the neighbors in the area have puppies so it was quite a surprise to see this puppy.  He is tiny, full of fleas and very hungry.  Travis took the puppy down to his parent's house, George and Lisa, and got the puppy cleaned up (after a flea bath) and fed.  The big question is what to do with the puppy or the bigger question is who gets the puppy? Will Travis keep the puppy or will George and Lisa keep the puppy?  I guess we will all have to wait and find out.  So check back tomorrow and see who the puppy will belong to.  Either way, welcome puppy to the farm.  That makes 5 dogs at the farm now so you see it really is going to the dogs!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

What A Nice 4th

We had a nice 4th of July watching movies during the rainy parts and enjoying a great BBQ with friends.  Thanks Larry & Linda, George & Lisa, Travis and Tim for a great day.  Even though the weather was not cooperative we had a great time anyway.  Tim grilled steaks that were delicious and all the rest of the food was great.  It did rain on and off during the BBQ but we were inside anyway so all was good.  We could not go see the fireworks because of rain and a thunder storm so we did the next best thing watched them on TV.  Thanks PBS, Channel 10 & NBC for the fireworks. It was a great 4th!  Happy 241 years America!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Happy 4th Of July

Happy 4th of July aka Independance Day.  It is hard to believe that 241 years ago today our country declared Independance from Britain.  Since then, the 4th of July has been a celebration for our great country.  We have had ups and downs but we are still country strong whenever someone or things attack us.  So on this July 4th appreciate what a great country we have and help it to remain home of the free and the brave!  Have a fun and safe 4th of July!

Monday, July 3, 2017

Trying To Celebrate The Fourth

Lisa and I have been trying to celebrate the 4th of July by sttending the activities in our local town of Parrottsville that held their July 4th celebration on the 1st.  We missed the parade by 10 minutes but to be fair we did not know what time the parade was going to be.  We went to attend the other festivities but it began to rain and we decided riding on hay bales in the rain was not going to be much fun.  Our BBQ got rained out and so did the fireworks.  So I guess Mother Nature was telling us no celebration this year which would make it three years in a row that we have missed it.  Well we will show you Mother Nature, we are having our own BBQ on the 4th and we will create our own fun with good friends, good food and whatever else we come up with.  Check back and see how we did!

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Chore Day

Before relaxing on this pre 4th of July week end some chores have to be done and Tim was busy doing them.  He cut and weed whacked the yard, fixed the steps leading onto the deck, they were the RV steps that were relocated when we built the deck onto the RV, and then painted them.  They look great! Tim also put rock guards on the little cabin on wheels.  He is getting it prepared to take the longest trip we have taken in it.  An announcement on that trip will be coming in the future.  With all the chores done Tim can have a relaxing week end.  Everything looks great Tim and thank you!

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Rib Feast

Last night we were treated to homemade BBQ Ribs courtesy of our neighbor Cheryl.  It was a thank you for helping with her hay.  She made and grilled 6 racks of ribs for everyone.  I heard they were delicious.  I am not a rib person so I enjoyed a couple of hotdogs.  Along with the ribs Lisa cut up and baked some zucchini spears which were delicious and  I provided the baked beans because what is a BBQ without baked beans.  It was a good evening with good friends, good food and fun.  Thanks Cheryl for the ribs and to George and Lisa for hosting us all!
An added surprise today...I can post pictures again which means I can stay with blogger.com.  I did report the issues but never heard from blogger.  I am okay with it since it is now fixed.  Thanks blogger.com!

Friday, June 30, 2017

We Have Direct TV

We had Direct TV installed yesterday.  It is going to save us some money each month especially with my new AT&T account for my phone.  By getting direct and AT&T together is will save us over $50 a month.  We loved DISH but it was getting too expensive having it for tv and Internet and also having a data package.  If DISH could of worked a deal minus the phone we would of stayed.  Of course when Tim called and canceled they were willing to work with us but where was that a couple of months ago when we were looking for options?  Anyway, so far all has been good!  Hello Direct!

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Sill Waiting...

Well, I am still waiting to hear something from Blogger, the host of this blog.  I have been with Blogger.com for six years and have been very happy until now.  I can still blog but, for now, I am unable to post pictures which I feel enhances my blog.  I have sent another inquiry and hopefully will hear something soon.  If not, I will be changing blog host sites.  There are several out there I just have to choose one and set it up.  If you have any suggestions for a blog host site please let me know by commenting on this blog, emailing me, texting me or by facebook, twitter or Instagram.  I have one requirement, it needs to be a free host site.  Fingers crossed I get to stay with Blogger!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Things Go On...

...things go on here at the farm but for now I can only share with you through words because I still am unable to post pictures and I have some nice ones too.  Back to the farm...it was a busy day around here.  George was grooming Quail Way by getting all of the weeds and grass and trees cut down on the sides of the road.  It looks so much nicer now, thanks George!  Lisa has harvested our first big harvest picking over 10 pounds of veggies.  Tim has been  sprucing up the yard with cutting the grass, weed eating and he even planted some wild flowers.  I have been busy in the Crafty Cottage working on door prizes for my sister's SAS in July.  Travis has been busy working and unpacking more boxes now that he has things the way he wants them in his home. The dogs are all happy running around playing and laying in the grass enjoying the cooler but sunny weather.  See I told you there is plenty going on at the farm.  Hopefully I will soon be able to show you too!  It is just another day at the farm!

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Troubles With This Blog

I am not sure what is happening with the pictures on this blog but as of yesterday I have been unable to add pictures to this blog.  I have sent in the feedback to the blog host site but have not heard back on it yet. I will be updating the blog daily and hope that a solution is found.  If it is not Just Another Day At The Farm will be moving to a new blog host site.  If you have any suggestions for one, please share!

Monday, June 26, 2017

Helping The Golf Game

Tim and George play golf in a Senior's Golf League where twice a week they have an opportunity to play a round of golf at several different golf courses in the area.  The golf courses are as far away as Kingsport and as close as Greeneville.  They don't play every week because they have the opportunity to pick and choose which courses they want to play.  Tim decided it was time to help his game out a bit by putting new grips on his clubs.  They are due and it is not a hard job but it does take a little bit of time.  Once they are all done hopefully it will help out his game with a better grip on the club.  The league they play in can be fun, frustrating, winnable, maddening, enjoyable, etc.  FORE!

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Got Mulch?

The Welcome fence or sign fence or whatever we call it needed some life or color to it besides our holiday decorations.  We have had several discussions on what to do to the area to make to it more colorful but because it does not get a lot of sunlight it makes some flowers or bushes obsolete.  We enjoy decorating the fence for the seasons or holidays but it just needs more. George has come up with a plan and has started to put it in place.  He mulched the entire area.  Now this did two things, made it look better and because of the color of the mulch makes the decorations on the fence stand out.  Phase one is done...we got mulch!

Saturday, June 24, 2017

My New Fitbit

Last August Jenny and Nate gave me a Fitbit Charge because my other fitbit was giving me issues.  I love the Charge because it has a watch.  I wore it every day but in the last month the band started to fall apart from the fitbit unit.  These bands are not replaceable and I was so disappointed but I decided to contact Fitbit and see if anything could be done.  Fitbit was excellent and was going to replace my fitbit because it was still under warranty.  They sent it out the next day but I never received it.  After waiting 12 days I contacted Fitbit again telling them my issue and they asked me to track it down with Fed Ex and the Post Office and I did but got no where.  Fed Ex said it was delivered to the Post Office and the Post Office said it never received it.  I believe it was lost by Fed Ex because the tracking number is still saying in transit.  So, I contacted Fitbit once again and asked what could be done.  They looked into my issue and sent me another Fitbit but sent it 2 day delivery.  I got my Fitbit Charge yesterday and while setting it up I had another issue and contacted Fitbit support again and it corrected it with me.  Thank you Fitbit for backing your product and for also having a great support system to aid your customers and their issues.  If you want a good step tracker that backs their product and has a great support center then buy a Fitbit.  You will not be disappointed.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Waiting For Cindy

A couple of days ago I kept getting texts from my daughter in Florida about Tropical Storm Cindy and that it was heading their way.  Yesterday while talking to Jenny she was glad it did not move that far East but realized that it was heading for us.  So yes, way up here in Tennessee we are awaiting the arrival of Cindy.  Now we will not have the damage that Cindy caused on the Texas/Louisiana border but we will get rain and maybe a tornado.  It rained on and off yesterday and it is suppose to rain on and off today but late tonight early Saturday morning is when Cindy will be arriving.  Hopefully it will just be rain but we will have to wait and see.  So, we are waiting for Cindy!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

From Full To Empty Nester

The second batch of baby wrens have hatched, as you know, and they seemed to have grown rather quickly this time.  The nest, when checked, was so full that there was not any room for the birds.  Once we saw this we knew it was just a matter of time before the birds would fly the coop and they did.  Shortly after the full nest pictures were taken the birds took off.  We even had one of the wrens trying to start a new nest inside our grill.  We caught it in the very early stages and took it apart then fixed the grill so the wren could not get back in.  Now with the nest empty we are wondering if there will be more eggs.  The wrens in this area can lay eggs this late in June.  I guess we will just have to wait and see.  For now, we have gone from a full nest to an empty nester!

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

A Patriotic Fence

On this first day of summer it was time to get the spring decor off the fence and make it festive for the summer.  We went with a partriotic theme.  We wrapped garland around the rails and bought some big bows to also place on the rails.  It looks so good and even better when you see it in person; pictures do not do it justice.  It only took Lisa and I about 15 minutes which was good because after 5 minutes we were dealing with gnats.  Did you know I dislike gnats? Anyway, we are ready for the 4th of July! Go U.S.A.!!!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

A New Addition To The Bird Sanctuary

Lisa and George have set up a really nice bird sanctuary and while we were in Dillsboro they purchased a new birdhouse for the bird sanctuary.  It is actually a church birdhouse and it is really a nice one.  When we got back from Dillsboro George got right to work to hang the new addition.  It really looks nice and helps complete the bird sanctuary.
Today is the longest day of the year for daylight and it is also my son-in-law's, Nate, Birthday.  Happy, Happy Birthday Nate!  We love you very much and could not be happier or prouder to have you as our son.  I hope you have a wonderful day!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Dillsboro, NC Arts & Crafts Festival

On Saturday we took a little road trip to Dillsboro, NC to attend their Arts & Crafts and Music Festival.  We have never been to Dillsboro and had no expectations of what to expect but what we attended was just that, an arts and crafts festival.  There were over 40 vendors selling pottery, sewn goods, bird houses, dog accessories, paintings, jewelry, furniture, candles and more.  Along with the vendors there were live bands playing all day and the local shops were also opened.  It was nice festival and Dillsboro is a nice small historic town in North Carolina.  For more on Dillsboro visit my blog Travels With Ruth this Thursday.  There is another festival in August that Dillsboro sponsors so we may be checking that out too!  It was a fun day!

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Happy Father's Day!

I want to take this opportunity to wish all the fathers a very Happy Father's Day!  A special shout out to some wonderful men in my life.  To Tim for being the best Dad to our girls, I love you very much! To my son in law Nate who is an outstanding Dad to our girl Rory, we love you Nate!  A special loving Happy Father's Day to both my dads, Warren Colley and Edward Winship who have loved  and guided me through life.  I love and miss you both everyday.  Happy Father's Day!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Planting Times Three

We planted the garden for the third time yesterday.  We are trying to make some crops grow longer and have staggered the growing times so we would not have so many of one item at a time.  Corn, green beans, lettuce and carrots are the main crops that we did this process with.  If they all grow the way we are hoping we should have these crops harvest well into August and maybe even September. I guess time will tell.  We did do our second harvest yesterday.  We picked some more blueberries, about 6 of them, and three cherry tomatoes.  I ended up just eating the blueberries and I am sure that is what Lisa will do with the tomatoes.  Later in the afternoon George was in the orchard with Lisa looking at the fruit trees and did pick the first peach.  It was not quite ripe but the parts that were tasted great.  Harvest time will be upon us before we know it!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Some Cricut Fun

Did I mention in this blog that I have a Cricut now?  Well, I do and I love it! My daughter, Jenny, bought a new one because she is starting a side business with a friend and wanted to have an updated Cricut for the business.  So, I received her old Cricut that she has had for a couple of years.  Well, needless to say, I am thrilled!  I have wanted one for several years but knew it was not in the budget.  So, with my new toy,  I have already been having fun learning and creating things.  My latest creation is my tea jar and tin bucket where I learned to layer vinyl.   The tea jar is simple vinyl and the images on the tin is done in layers and it was fun to put together.  Now that I have the Cricut I want to decorate everything!  The pictures posted are some of the projects I have created so far with my Cricut! 

Thursday, June 15, 2017

A Clear Phone

Yesterday Tim and I spent a couple of hours at an AT&T store in Morristown because we were switching my phone from Staight Talk to AT&T.  The associate helping us did a fantastic job handling us and about 10 other customers.  Straight Talk was giving us a bit of problem in porting my number but AT&T and the associate was persistent and got it done.  Now,  I liked Straight Talk but I did discover one thing after switching; my phone is a lot clearer when talking on it.  I can hear better and the ones I was talking to said I sounded clearer.  I guess having AT&T with the AT&T tower right near by makes a huge difference then using a third party through it.  Thanks AT&T!

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Old Mill Square

The Old Mill Square is a shopping area that surrounds the Old Mill Restaurant that is a mill that was built in 1830 and has been in operation since then.  The Old Mill has demonstrations daily as to what and how the mill works along with candy making demonstrations and pottery making demonstrations.  The Old Mill is a big restaurant that serves homemade foods like your grandmother use to make.  Around the Old Mill are more shops and restaurants that also feature items made at the mill and lot of other merchandise too.  There is the Farmhouse Kitchen store, the Farmhouse Candy store, a huge pottery store, along with jewelry, clothing, soaps, metal sculptures, blacksmithing, and wood working stores. There is even a distillery and much more.  It is a nice area to spend some time shopping at but make sure you go hungry so you can enjoy a meal at the Old Mill.  We did not get a chance to but we will be returning to do just that especially since the cross stitch store I like is located a block away from the Old Mill.  If you are visiting the Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg area make sure you take time to visit the Old Mill and Old Mill Square.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Girls Day Out

While the guys were off golfing and since Kaitlyn (Lisa & George's daughter) was still in town we decided to have a girls day out.  We headed to Pigeon Forge and to the Old Mill Square (more on that tomorrow) then headed to the Apple Barn for lunch.  After lunch we went to Old Time Pottery where we walked the entire store and down every aisle.  We then headed to Joann's and then Hobby Lobby before heading back to the farm.  We had a great time and I enjoyed spending the day with Lisa and Kaitlyn.  Thanks ladies!

Monday, June 12, 2017

We Have More Baby Birds

We have more baby birds!  The second batch of eggs in the wren nest has hatched and it looks like they are all doing well.  Lisa got some pictures yesterday and the birds are bigger that we thought.  They are probably not far from fleeing the nest.  The next question is will that be it or will our mama wren have one more batch?  There is still time to do so which means we will be doing an egg check of the nest for a little while longer.  Welcome to the world little birdies.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

A Twine Holder

I was able to purchase several rolls of baker's twine in several colors but storing them so I would not forget them was troublesome.  So I came up with a storage idea and I had the items needed to make it so I did.  I used a wood plaque, a wooden dowel ( cut into two pieces), a drill and some wood glue.  Tim and I assembled the twine holder together by drilling two holes into the plaque, cutting the dowel in two and placing them into the holes filled with wood glue.  It took all of 5 minutes from start to finish.  Thanks Tim for helping and now I have a great storage area for my baker's twine!

Saturday, June 10, 2017

A Gadget That Works

My daughter Carrie gave me one of the best kitchen gadgets that actually works really well.  It is a watermelon slicer that will cut a watermelon in slices easily and almost no mess.  It is a simple tool that has a strange look to it but it slices through watermelon with ease and literally only took me maybe 30 seconds to slice up a quarter of a watermelon.  I will be using this tool going forward.  The best thing each slice is the same size too!  Thanks Carrie, I love it!

Friday, June 9, 2017

Wonder Woman

I have never been a fan of comic books, with the exception of Archie when I was a little girl, but now that Marvel and DC Comics are bringing out movies I am becoming a fan.  I do like the Avenger movies along with Thor, Captain America, Ironman and Guardians of the Galaxy.  We went and saw Wonder Wonan and it was great.  So now I am looking forward to DC Comics Justice League.  Wonder Woman tells a story I never knew and it was well done.  The movie is action packed and the special effects are really good.  If you are looking for a fun and action packed movie with a good story then go see Wonder Woman!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Ober Gatlinburg

Ober Gatlinburg is an amusement park and snow ski area located in the mountains overlooking Gatlinburg, TN.  It was built in 1962 and it has a large mall with indoor amusements, a skating rink, restaurants and stores.  Outside there are ski runs, an alpine slide, a mountain roller coaster, some kiddie rides, a maze, miniature golf, a wildlife encounter and a scenic chairlift to the top of Mount Harrison (elevation 3590 ft). In the winter there are ten ski runs, a terrain park, three chairlifts and a multi lane tubing area.  To get to Ober Gatlinburg an aerial tram is taken from downtown Gatlinburg up to Ober Gatlinburg that is a 2mile ride and takes about 10 minutes.  The ride has some spectacular views especially if you get by a window. During the fires last fall in Gatlinburg it was reported that Ober Gatlinburg was totally destroyed but I am happy to say that is false.  The fires did surround the area but Ober Gatlinburg was safe and is in full operation.  The scenic chair lift to the top of Mount Harrison is a relaxing ride that leads to some spectacular views of the Smokey Mountains.  An added touch at the top, live music that is played all day. Ober Gatlinburg has so much to do in any season and is very family friendly.  This was our first time (Tim and I) and we will return.  It was a great day and a great place to spend anywhere from a couple of hours to all day.  If you are in Gatlinburg for a few day then visit Ober Gatlinburg and have fun!    To see more of our Gatlinburg visit please visit my Travels With Ruth blog.  travelswithruth-ruth.blogspot.com

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Happy Birthday Carrie!

I would like to wish my daughter Carrie a very Happy Birthday.  It doesn't seem possible that you are turning 33 years old today especially since I am only 32 myself.  I hope you have a wonderful day and wish we were with you to celebrate your special day.  From the time you were born to currently you stole my heart and it will be forever like that.  You have grown into a woman that can do anything and you have your whole future ahead of you.  Keep doing your best, make good choices and just live.  Happy Happy Birthday Carebear! ❤️

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Dead Men Tell No Tales

We went and saw "Pirates of the Caribbean 5 Dead Men Tell No Tales" and if you are a Pirates fan then you will love it.  Even if you are not it is good.  We are and so we throughly enjoyed it.  We all liked it better than Pirates 4 and it kind of wrapped up the on going story from the first three movies and still left it open for another Pirates movie.  I don't want to say much more than that because I don't want to spoil it for anyone but if you want to go to a movie for fun and action then this is it!

Monday, June 5, 2017

The Plants Get Fed

After planting all the seeds and plants in the garden some of the tomato and egg plant plants were not looking very good so Operation help the tomatoes & eggplants began. Lisa was reading about the impact of heavy rains on the nutrients in the soil and found out that the rain will wash away key nutrients such as nitrogen. George & Lisa decided to use tomato & vegetable plant food and George sprinkled the granules around the plants and Lisa followed him with the liquid food both hoping it would work and it did. The plants are doing much better and we are all pretty sure there will be a bumper crop of tomatoes and eggplants.  Sounds like some eggplant Parmesan will follow too!

Sunday, June 4, 2017

The Dump Truck Lives On

As you know the dump truck on the farm has had its ups and downs and most of the time it has been down so the saga of the dump truck was created but if you remember a couple of months ago Tim and George ended that saga and yesterday went even further than the saga.  When repairing the truck used parts from an old truck that George had purchased, to be used for parts,  fixed the problems on the dump truck and yesterday it had its maiden voyage and it did a great job.  The maiden voyage was to pick up horse manure from a local rancher and instead of using the pick up truck and make several trips George and Tim were able to make one trip with the dump truck.  One small problem is the battery was weak and as the manure was getting loaded they did have to jump start the truck.  Other than that everything went well and now there is a working dump truck on the farm and a whole lot of horse manure!  Basically the Dump Truck lives on!

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Catching Squirrels?

If you want to catch a squirrel just ask Lisa.  She has managed to create quite a squirrel trap and didn't even realize that is what she had purchased.  She thought she bought a bird feeder which is exactly what she did but. However, a squirrel thought it was its personal feeder and managed to flip open the lid and crawl inside getting trapped.  The squirrel got in easily but getting out was a different story.  George, Lisa and Tim tried a few things to get the squirrel out but eventually Tim, using thick gloves, took the bird feeder and placed it on its side on the ground and opened the lid so the squirrel could get out.  The squirrel got out and ran like its life depended on it. So, if you need to trap a squirrel get a bird feeder with a lid.

Friday, June 2, 2017

The Fruit Trees Are Showing

If you have followed this blog for the past couple of years you know that at this time of year I do a lot of blogs about the orchard and the garden.  There is one big reason for that and it is because a lot of our time and effort will be dedicated to the orchard and garden for at least the next three months.  Today is all about the fruit trees.  They are looking really good and if the trees keep doing their thing then this year should be a good year for all the fruits.  The grapes and pears have been good the past couple of years but we have not had as much luck with the peaches, nectarines and apple trees.  So far, they are all bearing fruit and we just hope we can beat the birds and insects to harvest.  As for now we just wait and see and watch the trees show their fruit!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Planting Time Again

More seeds were planted in the garden which is a strategy that we are hoping will work out with having crops last longer and not get too much all at once.  Corn and Green beans were planted again along with replanting cantaloupe, acorn squash, watermelon and cucumbers.  We had some visitors in the garden (cows and wild boar) that decided to walk all through the patch where the above items were planted.  They killed a some of the plants that is why they were replanted.  We may have beef and pork soon if they continue to ruin our crops.  This time when planting Lisa used a PVC pipe to plant the seeds.  It worked well and only cost $5 compared to the $600 seeder we tried earlier; the seeder was returned for a full refund.  So now we are hoping the plants will grow or continue to grow and we will be harvesting in about a month or earlier. 

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

The Wood Farm

So the farm may be renamed to the wood farm only because for the past few days, when it wasn't raining, Tim and George qhave been busy cutting up the fallen trees.  There were quite a few and they have all been big trees so there has been a lot of wood to be had.  George has a log splitter which makes it a bit easier to take care of the logs.  Along with the trees on the farm there has been a couple trees that have fallen on our road.  Tim and George have been responsible for those too.  Way to go Tim and George.  Check out the wall of wood!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

New Life At The Farm

Our wren is being very productive with its second batch of eggs.  The strange thing is that the same nest is being used. Wrens will build four or five nests then choose from there which one to use.  This year the same nest has been used twice but then again where the nest is located is a very safe place.  It is on top of one of the lights on the tool shed under the porch roof.  It will not have to deal with any weather, wind or predators.  I guess this wren is pretty smart after all.  Four eggs and waiting!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Happy Memorial Day

Today we honor the men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice that we may be free.  It takes a special kind of person who is willing to give their life for our country and its citizens.  Thank you, you will not be forgotten! To all those celebrating the holiday, be safe out there.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Happy Birthday Jenny!

Tim and I were truly blessed the day Jenny was born.  Today is her birthday and not only is it her birthday but it is her special birthday.  She has turned 28 on the 28th!  Not a lot of people care about "thee" special birthday but I have always thought it was special and celebrate it just a bit more. 
Happy Birthday Jenny!  You mean so much to dad and I and we can't love you enough.  You are fantastic, loving, smart, beautiful, and caring.  We love you and hope you have a wonderful birthday and I am extra happy to be with you on your special day.  We love you! Happy Birthday Jen!

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Preparing The Orchard

As the seeds that were planted, just about a month ago, there was some prep work that went into the orchard before planting could be done.  One major project that Tim and George worked on was taking down all the trellises that was put up quite a while ago.  It was there to help the Kiwi grow and kiwi did grow but never had any fruit.  George decided to take the trellises down since he was going to give up on the kiwi and it would make working around the beds easier especially for tilling and mowing.  Now that it is gone and just the pavilion was left up it looks good and it will make it a lot easier to work around the beds.  Nice job guys!

Friday, May 26, 2017

May SAS Door Prizes

It's Door prize time again for my sister's May SAS that happened last week end.  Now that it is over I can reveal the door prizes I made for her.  Each person that attends her SAS got to choose one of the four door prizes.  The most popular one was  the Birthday adventure (the ones with the little girl, baker, etc).  That is a brand new set from the new catalog that will be available shortly.  A lot of work and days goes into making the door prizes but I am always happy to help my sister out.  So glad the May SAS went well.  Way to go Pam! 👍🏻

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Designer Jeans - Farm Style

There was a story on the news the other day about high fashioned jeans that looks like they have been worked in at a construction site or farm.  The thing is to buy a pair it costs $200 to $500 dollars.  Well if you are interested in a pair I can get them discount or it could be a dyi project; your choice!  All you have to do is let us know whether you want a pair for $50 or do it yourself.  Tim is very good at creating these high fashion jeans especially the hard way; working!  Or you could come to the farm and put in a day's work and create your own high fashioned jeans.  Either way, you can have the latest style in jeans at a discount price!

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

After The Rain

Talking with Tim yesterday he said it was raining and had been doing it all day so it was a quiet day at the farm. Tim worked on a trip we are planning in August and watched television while the rain continued to fall.  In the early evening the sun peaked out and created a huge rainbow the filled the sky.  It was so big that Tim could not get a full picture of it and had to take three pictures to see the whole rainbow.  The colors were pretty intense.  So, after the rain comes a rainbow!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Crafty Cottage Got A Little Rehab

The Crafty Cottage got a little rehab or at least the screen door did.  Since the screen door was installed some of the screen on the door had some rips and tears that I repaired with tape.  The door also did not close tightly  but yesterday Tim took care of it.  He swapped out the hinges and rescreened the door so now the door is functioning correctly both closing tight and keeping the bugs out. He also added a handle to the door on the inside so I can shut it tightly.  I love the screen door on the crafty cottage because it allows great fresh air on days when I can have the door opened.  Thanks Tim!  It looks great!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Planting - Stage Two

Last week was the second stage of planting in the garden with more green beans, lettuce. Carrots and beets. The reason we plant in stages is so we will not get too many beans all at once.  Now the growing season has been expanded and so will the enjoyment of the veggies picked in stages.  There is one more stage to go before we are done planting.  The crops planted earlier are showing signs of life with little green sprouts growing from the ground.  Thanks George and Lisa for the second planting!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Throwing Hay

Tim and George had a great afternoon the other day throwing Hay.  They got home from playing golf and got a message saying the hay was being delivered, could they help.  So, they both got to go throw hay for a few hours.  They have done this once before so they knew what they had to do.  It took about four hours to put up over 155 bales of hay but they got it done and are waiting for the next delivery for the following day.  After waiting for a few hours for the next delivery of hay it ended up raining so it was cancelled to be delivered at a later date.  Way to go Tim and George!

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Another New Visitor To The Farm Orchard

When George was walking around the orchard yesterday he came across another visitor to the farm.  He took a picture and Lisa and I think it is a Tennessee snapping turtle.  Without being able to see its pointed snout we are not 100% sure but it meets all the other criteria.  Tennessee snapping turtles live around lakes, rivers, streams, wetlands, ponds and vernal pools.  They range between 8 inches to 18 1/2 inches in length.  Their mating habits are done in the water but then the females will travel over land to dig a nest to lay their eggs. To get to the right place to lay her eggs the female will even use roadways and several do get run over by cars.  The turtle that was in the orchard was about 12 inches long and we can only wonder where it came from although there are a couple of ponds near by.  Welcome turtle just don't touch the crops!

Friday, May 19, 2017

The Keys Go For A Ride

On Tuesday we celebrated Rory's birthday at Mellow Mushroom.  Since it was by Rory's school we decided to meet Rory and Nate there.  Jenny rode in our car with Tim and I and she had put her keys on the seat.  When we got to the restaurant she didn't need her keys and left them in the car.  Well, she rode home with Nate and still not needing the keys they sat in the car.  Tim left to head to Tennessee after the party and so did the keys.  Jenny realized it the next morning after we got a text from Tim letting us know he was home.  We then decided to have the keys overnighted, there is only one set of keys to the car, but then we remembered that Lisa was coming to Jacksonville the next day so she brought them down with her.  I met her last night to get the keys and now Jenny can drive her car again.  Thanks Lisa for bringing the keys!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

The Iris In Tennessee

The Irises are in full bloom right now and they are beautiful!  The ones at the farm are violet, white and yellow and the cul du sac is full of them.  The Iris is the state flower of Tennessee and when they are in bloom it is amazing.  Irises are only suppose to bloom once a year but every once in a while the irises at the farm have bloomed twice a year.  Last year it happened so we will have to wait and see if it happens this year.  Right now they are beautiful!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Fruit Trees On The Farm

Tennessee is a good state for several types of fruit trees to grow because of it's mild climate but still having four seasons.  There are some different soil varieties in Tennessee from clayish dirt in eastern Tennessee to a more sandy dirt in western Tennessee.  The best types of fruit trees that grow in Tennessee are pears, plums, apples, cherries, grapes and persimmon.  I think George has planted everything on this list and a few more.  This year the fruit trees are looking good and if they continue to grow we will have a bumper crop of peaches, cherries, apples, pears and grapes for sure.  Check back on the progress!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

It's Rory's Birthday

Rory turns three today and we are all together to celebrate.  I was there and watched her birth and I will be there for every birthday I can possibly be at.  I remember watching my friends when they were having grandchildren and thinking eh, what's the big deal.  Well, now I get it!  Having a grandchild allows me to be part of a child's life again and watching Rory grow has been wonderful.  She has brought new life to me and everyday spent with Rory is a great day.  Tonight we are celebrating Rory's birthday at Mellow Mushroom with family and friends.  The best part is Rory understands it is her birthday and she is so excited.  Happy Happy Birthday Rory; we love you!

Monday, May 15, 2017

The Granddogs Are Home

When we drove down to Florida on Friday of course we had all three dogs in the car.  Lily and Ace were heading home after spending a week with us and I think they knew it.  As soon as we took them to the car they jumped right in.  With the new car all three dogs were able to travel very comfortable and had the whole back of the car to themselves.  Lily and Ace are great dogs and very well behaved at the farm.  They never ran off and listened to us when they were called.  Shadow was very good with sharing his place with them.  We enjoyed the puppies and they are welcomed back.  For now, they are glad to be back home and with Jenny, Nate and Rory.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there and I would like to wish a very Happy Mother's Day to my daughter Jenny and my mom in law Mary.  Today I get to spend my very first Mother's Day with Rory together and get to spend it with my girls for the first time all together in 6 years.  I am one lucky mom and gamma. Happy Mother's Day!

Saturday, May 13, 2017

The Wood Pile Continues To Grow

Tim and George were once agin cutting up the trees that fell in the holler down by the orchard.  It has been quite a chore and for three days straight all they have been doing is cutting the trees, putting the logs through the wood splitter and creating a wall of firewood.  George and Tim will get a rest from tree cutting for a few days while Tim and I are in Florida which is good because they are really worn out right now. Come winter George will be ready; maybe for the three or four years.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Bowling For Fun

Now that the Coffee League is done for this year, it will start back again in August, I have begun to just meet with other Coffee Leaguers and bowl for fun on Thursday nights.  Whoever wants to bowl shows up at the bowling alley and we bowl with whomever shows up.  The first night we only had 5 but last night we had nine.  I think as word gets out we will have more and more show up.  It is fun and the only person you are bowling for is yourself.  I won't be there the next two weeks because I will be in Florida but I will be back after that.  The best part is the bowling alley is allowing us to bowl at a discounted rate and sets it up in league play for us.  It is just plain fun!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

More Trees Are Down

With all the rain and high winds we have been having over the past couple of weeks we know we could lose some trees but we had a bit of a surprise the other day when in the middle of the afternoon there was a huge crash that sounded like thunder yet there was not a storm in the area.  The crashing sound was actually three trees that had fallen in the holler just below George and Lisa's house.  At first George and Tim thought is was just one big tree but after going down to the area and looking at the tree it ended up being three trees.  They had rotted away at the base of the tree from ants tunneling in and living in the tree.  When they began cutting up the big tree they even discovered the queen's nest.  With the removal of a tree near us and now with the three trees in the holler and then four more to be taken down George and Lisa are going to have enough firewood for a few years.  Unless we get a fire pit then I think we could get rid of some firewood for them!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Another Widow Maker Comes Down

Yesterday another tree, aka widow maker, was taken down by Tim and George.  It was one that was suppose to be taken down last year but it was not a big threat so it was left.  Well now with the new car it is a threat.  Tim and George roped the tree and George started cutting.  Things were going great until the rope slipped off the tree. George could not hear us calling him so he continued to cut.  When he stopped the tree fell just where it was suppose to so it all worked out in the end.  The tree is down, the car will be safe and George has a whole bunch of firewood cut and stacked.  Good job guys!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

The Trees Get Fed

The Fruit trees are doing well and if they keep going like they have been we will have a bumper crop of peaches, nectarines, cherries, apples, plums and pears.  In order to make sure we do get a good crop the trees needed to be fed.  We have clay soil here and so it needs to be treated to make the soil better.  George has been adding horse manure to the soil in the garden beds to help but you really cannot do that to the trees.  Instead George and Lisa treated the trees with 10-10-10- fertilizer.  The numbers 10-10-10 refers to the composition of a particular mix of fertilizer.  The numbers are the percentage and the component parts of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium in that order.  So 10-10-10 fertilizer contains 10 percent each of these three main nutrients.  This will help feed the trees and hopefully make them grow and produce healthy fruits.  Thanks George and Lisa and great timing in getting it in down just before it started to rain.  Now we wait and see what grows!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2

I really liked the movie Guardians of the Galaxy when it came out a couple of years ago.  It was a different type of Marvel movie but still good, funny and enjoyable.  This past week end we we went and saw Guadians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and enjoyed it even more so than the first movie.  It is very funny and very entertaining.  These are some big names in the movie too; Kurt Russel and Slyvester Stallone.  If you want a fun movie that any age can see and just have a fun night then this is one you have to see!

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Dog Sitting

Tim and I are dog sitting for the week.  Tim drove down to South Carolina and met up with our son in law, Nate, who drove up from Florida.  They were meeting to swap the dogs, Lily and Ace.  We had Lily and Ace at the farm a couple of summers ago for a few months while Nate and Jenny were flying back to the mainland from living in Hawaii.  They are great dogs and they know us so well.  Jenny says she has sent Ace to the fat farm.  Last time he was here he dropped quite a bit of weight which was good because he needed to.  She would like him to lose some more weight while here.  We will see what we can do.  I am hoping if I do a good enough job with the dogs then she will realize I would do an even better job if and when we get to have Rory visit.  Jenny just isn't ready for her to go yet.  Tim and I keep thinking someday.  After all we raised her and she turned out okay! With Lily and Ace here this farm really has gone to the dogs.  There is now six!

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Cinco de Mayo - Farm Style

Last night we celebrated Cinco de Mayo the farm way.  I actually had not heard of Cinco de Mayo until 1983 when Tim and I were living in California; we were stationed at NAS North Island.  When May 5th came along there were celebrations everywhere and I was looked upon like I was crazy because I had never heard of it.  Of course, at that time, only California celebrated Cinco de Mayo until it became more popular Nation wide in the later 1980's.  Cinco de Mayo is a military celebration in Mexico.  It is celebrating the day the Mexican Army had beaten the French Army.  It was a major victory especially since the French Army was double the size of the Mexican Army.  In Mexico the holiday is not celebrated like it is here in the U.S.  It is a more serious holiday celebrated by a ceremony with speeches and maybe a military parade.  The U.S. version is a party. We celebrated with tacos and white sangria and a discussion of the real meaning of Cinco de Mayo.  It was a good night with good friends, food and drink.  Dessert was good too!

Friday, May 5, 2017

David "Davy" Crockett

David "Davy" Crockett born August 17, 1786 in Eastern Tennessee was a 19th century American folk hero, frontiersman, soldier and politician.  He was popularly known as "King of the Wild Frontier".  He was elected to the U.S. Congress twice and served in the Texas Revolution.  His reputation started early when he lived in Tennessee by his hunting and storytelling.  He was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1825 but lost in 1831 then to win again in 1833 but when he lost in 1835 he was so angry that he left Tennessee for Texas to join the Texas Revolution.  He was killed at the Battle of the Alamo March 6, 1836.  Crockett had become famous in his own lifetime for the larger-that-life exploits that became very popular due to stage plays and almanacs.  It continued after his death which later continued into the 20th century and eventually television and movies portraying his life.  All of this has made David "Davy" Crockett one of the best known American folk heroes.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Davy Crockett Birthplace State Park

We visited Davy Crockett Birthplace State Park Limestone, TN and had a really nice day.  Davy Crockett Birthplace State Park sits along the Nolichucky river and is a 105 acre park that is centered on the birthplace of David Crockett aka Davy Crockett.  Davy Crockett was a Tennessee frontiersman, soldier, politician and also fought at the Alamo in Texas. The State Park has a replica of Davy's cabin, at the time of his birth,  that has just been moved by the campground.  The park is in the middle of a small renovation to include a village  to show what life was like during Davy Crockett's time.  It also has a nice campground, pool, playground area, picnic areas, hiking trails, boat launch and rentals and a museum.  It was such a nice day that we decided to pick up some sub sandwiches and have a picnic lunch at the park.  There is one major renovation that will be taking place very soon; the name of the park.  The park, going forward, will be called David Crockett Birthplace State Park.  David Crockett never went by Davy.  The name Davy was due to Disney's Davy Crockett movies and song.  There will now be two state parks in Tennessee called David Crockett.  There is the David Crockett State Park located in Lawrenceburg, TN and the newly named David Crockett Birthplace State Park in Limestone, TN.  There will be more on David Crockett tomorrow so check back!

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

A Taste Of Greeneville

Last night we attended the 28th Annual Taste Of Greeneville in Greeneville, TN.  It was held at the General Morgan Inn a historic hotel in Greeneville.  This event is sponsored by the GFWC Greeneville Woman's Club and the funds raised allows them to continue their mission work around Greene County.  There were 18 restaurants from Greeneville and Greene county serving up their best dishes to be tasted and then voted on the patrons of the event.  This was our first time attending the tasting and we enjoyed the event very much.  The foods served were very good and we walked out full.  The event was well attended as we waited in line for over an hour just to get in.  We had to vote on best savory dish, best sweet dish, best beverage and best décor.  We voted but we did not all agree on the same food and drink which is good because we do have different tastes.  Thank General Morgan Inn for holding the event and to the Greeneville Woman's club for holding the event.  It was a  good evening after a good day. 
We visited Davy Crockett Birthplace State Park and will share our experience in tomorrow's blog.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

It's Planting Time Again

Now that we are in May we feel we are safe against any frosts so the time has come to plant the beds in the orchard.  There are five beds to be planted this year.  We are planting much of the same veggies that we did last year: three kinds of tomatoes, green peppers, eggplants, okra, sweet potatoes, green beans, lettuce, two kinds of carrots, beets, zucchini, three kinds of squash, two kinds of cantaloupes, pumpkin, two kinds of watermelon, cucumbers, pickling cucumbers and corn.  We did eliminate potatoes, peas and onions.  The onions were a complete fail the last two years, the peas did not produce as much as we wanted and the potatoes were too expensive to grow compared to what it costs to buy potatoes.  It was a group effort this year;  George and Lisa have planted by themselves the past couple of years but this year Tim and I were actually in town so the four of us were able to plant everything in a little over two hours.  George did buy this great seeder that was going to make planting all the seeds easier but the machine did not work with the kind of dirt we have in the orchard.  So, we did it the old fashioned way, with a hoe, a couple of spades, a shovel and our hands we dug, put down the seeds and buried them all with the hopes that everything will grow.  We are staggering some planting this year so we do not get a bunch of the same veggie all at once which means we will have another couple of smaller plantings to do soon.  Now all we have to do is wait!

Monday, May 1, 2017

The Road Has Been Graded Again

Quail Way is a long narrow gravel road that leads to the farm and since it is a private road, right now, the families that live along it has to maintain it.  Which breaks down to George having to maintain it with Tim and our local farmer friend Larry's assistance.  The road, once graveled and leveled is good for quite a while.  This has been the case with the exception of not using all wheel drive or four wheel drive on it.  What makes the road rough are vehicles not strong enough to travel up the gravel road.  Unfortunately when a car comes that cannot handle or know how to drive on a gravel road it creates ruts like a washboard that make driving for any vehicle tough.  George went to work and used his new tractor with a grader on it to smooth out the road and for now the road is good again.  Thanks George, you did a great job for the first time on your tractor!

Sunday, April 30, 2017

All The Baby Birds Are Here

There is a nest that gets built somewhere on or around the tool shed and for the past three years these nests have been well occupied.  This Spring we have 4 to 5 baby birds.  Since we cannot get too close to really see Lisa has gotten very good at getting pictures with her phone but she does it in a way that it does not threaten the nest, baby birds or parents.  With that said, she cannot really see what she is taking a picture of so it is hard to determine how many babies there are.  We know that we have counted 4 beaks but we also think we saw a fifth beak.  Anyway, the baby birds are doing great and we predict that within the next week they will be leaving their nest. 

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Cow Tails Saga Continues

A Cow Tails breakthrough has been found.  The cows came visiting once again and decided to walk through the blueberry plants.  The blueberries were looking so good until the cows came for another visit.  We will be planting the garden in the orchard in the next few days and we really do not need the cows to visit and take out some items so George and Tim got busy yesterday and went to find the area along the fence line that had been compromised and aided in the cows coming to visit here at the farm.  They found it and it was no wonder the cows came in with a herd; there were a couple of trees that had fallen down on the fence crushing it and allowing a nice opening for the cows to get through.  There was even a nice path created by the cows to ease in their coming and goings.  So George and Tim got busy in removing the downed trees and repairing the fence.  This should stop the visiting cows and protect our garden from being stomped on.  Thanks Tim and George: very nicely done!  So this should end the Cows Tails saga.  Now all we have to do is watch out for the gifts the cows have left us in the orchard...cow patties!

Friday, April 28, 2017

Preparing The Vines

Last year we had a pretty good crop of grapes and used the grapes to make a lot of grape jelly, which was/is delicious, and some grape juice.  The grape crop from last year was not as big as the year before but it worked.  This year we are expecting a bumper grape crop and since we are still sitting on several jars of grape jelly we are going to try and make wine with most of the grapes. The grape vines had to be tied up to the grape trellaces that help support the grape vines as they grow.  George and Lisa were busy doing it before the rain hit.  Now that the grapevines are tied up we are ready for the grapes to grow and harvest them. Some of the grapes harvested will still be used to make some grape jelly but most of the grapes will go into making wine.  We are learning that wine can be made from almost every fruit we are growing so we are going to be experimenting and will try to make wine from watermelon and peaches too.  We do know that with making wine it is a process that will take almost a year before the finished product will be ready to try but hey, we can wait...I think? 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

"Going In Sytle"

We all went to the movies yesterday and saw the movie "Going In Style" at the Newport Cinema.  It was a really good, cute and entertaining movie.  It starred Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, and Alan Arkin.  It is a remake of the same movie from the 1970's and just as good if not better.  It is full of comical moments that makes the movie fun and enjoyable.  If you want to go see something just for fun than this is a good movie to see.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Colors Of The Mountains

Last night the mountains were glowing with color that the setting sun was creating.  I have not seen this before but it was absolutely beautiful and of course I had to take pictures to share.  I even used my real camera and not my phone just to make sure I captured all the colors. The sun was putting on quite a light show highlighting the mountains.  Even the far off mountains in North Carolina were highlighted enough to show the ranges we normally don't see.  It made for a beautiful ending of the day.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

We Got A New Car

Tim and I have been discussing getting a bigger car due to traveling and needing room to seat more than four people.  Tim went to the Dodge/Jeep dealership yesterday to have our Jeep Compass looked at because it has a hum in the engine that was not there a couple of weeks ago.  He was gone for about four hours and when he came home he drove up in a white car but it was not our Jeep Compass.  It was a brand new Dodge Journey.  It is a V6 with third row seating and is all wheel drive.  It is really nice looking and now we have plenty of room for traveling and carrying passengers.  It was a nice surprise and it drives really nice.  Thanks Tim!

Monday, April 24, 2017

Time To Dry Out

We have just finished three days of almost solid rain.  It started Friday and did not quit until late Sunday night.  We even had over 24 hours of solid rain from Saturday night at 7:00 pm until 11:00 pm Sunday night.  With all the rain came a cold front so we went from 80 degree temperatures to 55 degree temperatures.  However, we knew it wouldn't last and today we woke up to sun and warmer temperatures.  It is going to be so warm that by the end of the week it may be in the 90's.  Gee, I hope it won't get that warm that soon!  The rain has made everything so green and you know the saying, "April showers bring May flowers".  If this is true we are going to loaded with flowers in May!  It is pretty outside even with the low lying clouds.  Welcome Spring!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Woodshed

Last night we went to dinner at a new restaurant in Cosby and it was really great.  The Woodshed restaurant opened a in late 2016 and so far seems to be doing really well.  It sits up on a hill and looks like a cabin from the road.  I think it actually was a large cabin or woodshed that had nicely been converted into a really good restaurant.  The food is good and almost everything we had was good.  We were a table of seven: Tim & I, George & Lisa, Larry & Linda and Travis.  We started with some appetizers, the onion straws were great, and when dinner came we enjoyed our dinner.  The only complaints were the carrots were not cooked quite enough and Linda's steak was overcooked.  Other than that I can highly recommend the chicken tenders, baked ziti, pulled pork, and hamburger.  Thanks Larry and Linda, George, Lisa and Travis and Tim for a nice evening at the Woodshed.  We will be back!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Healing Hands

Tim and I drove up to Bristol, TN to the Healing Hands Health Center.  Healing Hands is an organization in Bristol, TN that was formed in 1977 by the First Presbyterian Church of Bristol, TN to aid working uninsured people quality, charitable health care.  The Health Care center opened 18 months ago and it provides services for working uninsured neighbors at no charge.  The services include medical care and medications, dental care, chiropractic care, eye exams and spiritual counseling services.  Yesterday they were offering free dental care to Veterans so Tim decided to take advantage of it and had a couple of bad teeth taken care of.  He called in advance and was given an appointment which was great.  It is a very well run organization and Tim was well taken care of.  There were other booths set up in front of the center that could aid the veterans from banking to haircuts.  Thank you Healing Hands for sponsoring this event.  We both appreciate it.

Friday, April 21, 2017

We Have New Babies At The Farm

The other day while I was headed down to the Crafty Cottage I was passing the tool shed and saw a nest on top of a light on the shed.  The mother was sitting on the nest and while I slowly got my phone out to take a picture she flew away but I did get a picture of the nest.  The nest's location is not a new one and for the past couple of years the nest has been built and eggs have been laid in this same location and this year is no different. The nest belongs to a wren.  There are four species of wrens in eastern Tennessee and I am not sure which wren this is but am thinking it is either a Carolina wren or a House wren.  Wrens are very small birds with big voices.  Their song is intricate and distinct with a lot of volume.  You can hear them better than you can see them.  Last night after dinner Lisa got close to the nest without disturbing it and got a couple of pictures of the eggs and new hatchlings.  There were two baby birds and two to three eggs yet to hatch.  The two babies must of just hatched.  So we have new babies at the farm with more to come.  They will be in the nest for about 15 days then fly away.  The mom and day mate for life and stay in the area all year long.  There may be two to three broods for this couple each year so we may have more babies in the future.  They lay eggs from as early as March and as late as August.  Welcome baby wrens!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Bowling Banquet

The Coffee League is officially over for this year and will start another year next August.  We had our bowling banquet yesterday at a local restaurant, Janice's.  It was a really good breakfast that we were all treated to and I think we will be visiting Janice's again  because the food is good and the prices are great.  At the banquet we received our stats for the year, a cute little bowling pin with our best game and series printed on it and prize money.  I won three prizes, Handicap game, most improved and 3rd place in league.  I was surprised and happy with the money received for all three prizes.  Of course I don't bowl for the prize money I bowl for the fun of it and I really enjoyed the Coffee League and look forward to next year.  Through out the summer on Thursdays at 5:00 some of the Coffee Leaguers are getting together to just bowl and I will be joining them.  It should be fun and will allow me to get even more acquainted with the Coffee League crew.  Thanks to all who made my first year in the Coffee League fun!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

We Are Back But What A Ride

We have returned back to the farm and we had kind of an uneventful drive to get back. There were s few issues with some dump truck drivers.  Truck drivers are usually great on the road and I have the upmost respect for them and the job they do however yesterday was not a usual day on the highways.  There were at least three instances that a truck driver almost caused an accident right in front of us and twice we had to hit our brakes hard and avoid contact with the car ahead due to a truck driver's decision to merge when it was not necessary.  There were a lot of RV's on the road going a little slow and the trucks did not seem to appreciate it and made some dumb moves to get around them.  Even on a section of I-40 in North Carolina where trucks are not allowed to drive in the left lane there were trucks doing just that.  First time I had seen truckers purposely doing that. Even with the truckers we got home in good time and even though we miss our kids and our Rory it is good to be back!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Did You Know?

Did you know?  A new series on Just Another Day At The Farm blog.  This will be added from my contributing editors.  The first is this series is from Lisa who did some investigating and found out something about one of the bugs that are on the farm.  Check out the picture to the right...we thought these were male mosquitos but we were wrong.  Lisa found out that they are Crane Flies and they come from standing water.  The adults come out in late winter/early spring with the sole purpose of mating.  They drop their eggs which will become the adults next spring.  They don't bite, sting or eat.  They only have a 10-15 day lifespan and are in both dry and wet areas.  So what's their purpose in nature to be food for birds and other insects.
The crane flies are harmless insects that sole purpose is to reproduce.  They do not hurt anything and are considered the gentlest of insects.  So the next time you see one just leave it alone and let them live their 10 to 15 days.

Monday, April 17, 2017

A Cow's Tail Continues

The cow's tail continues with an update...the cows returned Saturday morning to the orchard.  Either the fence was not repaired correctly or the cows just decided to storm it. Either way they did return and this time we have pictures to prove it.  In doing some investigative reporting Lisa discovered who's cows they really are and where they belong.  Thankfully, our neighbor farmer got his crew together to help get the cows back to their pasture but those sneaky cows must of known and left.  The cows belong to a farmer who is leasing a pasture on the other side of our farmer neighbor's pasture.  This means the cows are breaking through their electric fence, crossing the corn fields of our neighbor and then breaking through the fence into the orchard.  The farmer who owns the cows has yet to be reached but our neighbor said he would let him know.  I say if the cows return then George and Lisa get to become a dairy farm too or they will have beef for quite a while. 

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Happy Easter

Today we get to spend our second Easter with Rory.  Her first Easter was in Hawaii and last year I was with her on Easter but this year Tim and I both get to spend it with her and our girls.  We have been having a great time and have kept fairly busy.  I hope you can celebrate this Easter with family and friends and have a wonderful day!  Check back tomorrow for a continuation of A Cow's Tail. Happy Easter!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Ode To The Steiner

The Steiner was a good piece of equipment on the farm and it did so many tasks before it simply just wore out.  It could be rebuilt but a new tractor was purchased and the steiner was retired.  Now in Tennessee no vehicle EVER retires some one else comes along and buys it.  The steiner was sold and yesterday was hauled off by the new owner to Ohio.  So here we go:

Ode To the Steiner a good working tractor
you performed your tasks well with mowing and moving
you built driveways and pathways and trails
that will be used for years to come
so now that you are gone you will not be forgotten
well, maybe
Thank you steiner

Friday, April 14, 2017

A Cow's Tail

I have a story about a cow's tail or tails but it really should be tales.  On Wednesday, as I was working away in my Crafty Cottage,  Tim and George claim that about 30 cows came into the orchard in the corn fields or where the corn was planted last year.  The border of the farm is surrounded by dairy farms and an occasional cow has wondered into the orchard.  30 cows have not.  George called the local farmer thinking they were his cows but when he came over they were not.  It turns out that the cows came from a farm that is next to the farm next to us.  That farmer came over and worked the cows back to where they had broken through the fence.  Here's the thing, in a world of technology and everyone with a cell phone was there one to be available to prove this story correct?   Of course not but they claimed it happened.  I guess the cow patties and hoof prints can prove it BUT I don't have any pictures.  This cow's tale did happened!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Headed South For Easter

This will be a short posting due to technical difficulties.  For some reason my wifi decided to play games with me this morning and just as I am writing the blog it goes out.  So, I have moved to my phone and it's data to write the blog.  I love my iPhone but not when I have to use it to write my blog it does add a level of difficulty to posting a blog.  With that said, or written, today Tim, Shadow and I are headed south to Florida to spend Easter with our kids and granddaughter.  This year Rory will really understand the Easter festivities so it should be a lot of fun!  Just a short eight hour drive and we will be there!  Here we come Rory!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Pin Busters Take Thrid!

I participated in my first Roll Off, the Coffee League Championship, and the Pin Busters came in third place.  We did not bowl to our full potential but we did pretty good.  I bowled well and stayed above my average all three games.  As a team, we bowled well enough to come in third.  We were bowling against the winning team and they were just unbeatable.  Way to go Billy's Crew!  The important thing is that we bowled well, we made the roll off and it was another successful season for the Pin Busters.  Next Wednesday is the Coffee League Luncheon which will be our last official get together for  the Coffee League until it starts a new season next August.  This was the first bowling league I have been in but it won't be my last.  Way to go Pin Busters! 

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Bowling Roll Off

Today is the last day of bowling for the Coffee League this season.  Today the four teams that won each quarter will bowl against each other for the championship?  I am not sure how it works I am just glad we made the roll off.  We actually won two of the four quarters but we can only win once for the roll off.  I have enjoyed bowling this year in the Coffee League and I hope I will be able to participate next year.  My only hope now is that I do not collapse under the pressure of the roll off and that we do well.  I can do this...we can do this...go Pin Busters!

Monday, April 10, 2017

The Cercis canadensis Are Beautiful

The Cercis Canadensis or better known as Red Bud trees are out in force and are beautiful.  This tree thrives in the Eastern part of the U.S. as far north as Canada and can live as far south as Florida.  It does not do well in the West especially with the arrid temperatures.  This tree can grow up to 20 to 30 feet tall and have kind of a twisted trunk with several branches.  The red buds, that are actually a dark pink majenta color, come out in spring and will last until early summer.  The tree is also known at the spice wood tree due to Native Americans using the the twigs and leaves to flavor their game while cooking.  It is a pretty tree and it grows well here in eastern Tennessee.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Another Great Saturday With Friends

We had another great Saturday afternoon and evening spending time with friends.  Larry and Linda came to farm and we all spent some time together.  It had been a while since Tim and I have been with Larry and Linda due to our traveling but we are all back and together again.  We decided to BBQ even though it was a bit chilly but when you are with friends and having fun you don't mind a little wind and chilly temperatures.  We decided to grill steaks and we had corn on the cob and a potato and green bean pack. Linda brought a great dessert, pineapple salad, and it was delicious.  Wow!  It was a great night.  Thanks Larry & Linda, George & Lisa and Travis for a nice time together.  I could get use to a friends Saturday nights!

Saturday, April 8, 2017

The Sun Did Come Out

After all that rain that we had the past few days the sun came out and stayed out.  It was cold, high of 45 degrees, but the sun made it seem warmer when the wind was not blowing.  We have had three days of high winds but today no wind.  By the way, the wind was so strong it took out all but one of my spinning flowers that I placed on the fence.  I am still trying to decide to replace them or not.  Today we will be spending some time with our friends Larry and Linda.  They are coming over later this afternoon and we will be grilling steaks!  Yum! Hey Sun, please keep shinning!

Friday, April 7, 2017

Rain, Rain Go Away...

Rain, rain go away...come again another day!  After the past several days of rain I am ready to have some sun.  I know we need the rain and it has really greened up around here.  The pastures are a really pretty green and the leaves on the trees are that really pretty spring green right now.  The later blooming trees are starting to show it blossoms but the rain has been heavy and came with colder temperatures.  The higher elevations are getting snow but we all know it won't last long.  Anyway, this week end is suppose to be warm and sunny and the sun it breaking through the rain clouds today.  Rain, rain go away...come again another day!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

The Wood Pile Is Gone

For almost a year there has been a large pile of limbs and branches from trees cut and or collected around the farm.  For some reason every time Tim and George tried to burn them there were several branches and limbs that just would not burn.  They tried everything and then burn season was over for a while so they had to wait.  Well in getting rid of the plum trees that were affected by black knot they needed to be burned.  What better place to burn them but on a pile of branches that also need to get burned.  Tim worked and worked trying to start the pile on fire.  Short of using a blow torch he finally built a small campfire and finally the pile burned and very quickly.  By the time George pulled the first black knot infested plum tree up from the orchard the pile was nearly gone but there were some nice coals that allowed the three infested to trees burn also.  Mission accomplished... the pile is gone!