Friday, May 3, 2013

More tumultuous skies over here.

I was bound and determined to enjoy my first Spring cup of coffee on the porch swing.
So here's me doing that.  All bundled up.

(This also happens to be the last time I ever wore those Smart Wool socks...)

It's been the strangest Spring.
Clear blue skies then rain, clear blue skies then snow, clear blue skies then rain.  

I've been trying to get out in the garden, when the weather permits, to do some Spring clean-up.
Now that the snow cover has melted, things are finally happening out there.  The daffodils are still merely green leaves with a few buds, the Paper Whites are barely poking through the ground, and there was ONE crocus bloom hiding under some pine needles.
We're well over a month behind in the growing season so far.  Last year on April 11 we were celebrating the season's first fresh flower bouquet from the garden (there is a link to that post here).  

This week there were exactly four blooming things in the garden.
I picked three of them and made this year's first fresh flower bouquet of the season...

Sad, I know.
But at least it's something.
This week we enjoyed the warmest day of the year so far, it was in the upper 70s.
LOVED being outside in the fresh air.

Then more turmoil the next day...

I made this nest out of sticks and feathers I gathered while cleaning up the garden.
Got to BELIEVE it will warm up and stay that way!

But today we woke up to a sheet of ice covering everything!

Oh, did you see the full moon recently?
I kept hearing about the "red moon" that woud be appearing because of a partial eclipse,
so on the evening it was supposed to happen I set the camera on a tripod,
bundled up in a coat and hat, watched and waited.
After about half hour or so, I found out from my sister that we can't see it from North America.  Doh.
Oh well, here's a picture of the lovely full moon that night.

One evening after supper, we went for a ride and I was so glad I grabbed the camera on the way out the door. 
My husband has been scouting places to turkey hunt next week,
so we went out to see if there was activity going on in his hunting spots.

Maple syrup harvest is still in full swing!
I'd never seen a setup quite like this.  Here each maple tree is tapped, then the syrup runs through the tubes to a central spigot.  I'm more used to seeing the primitive method...a single plastic ice cream bucket hanging from a nail on a tree, so I was kind of fascinated by this contraption!

There was rolling thunder in the distance but we didn't get rained on; that came later in the evening.
We saw a double rainbow - hard to capture on camera - but it's barely visible to the right of the main rainbow.

Yesterday was a day I look forward to every year at this time...the Good News Baptist Church rummage sale!
It's such a fun sale to go to, as they clear out the large sanctuary, move in tables and hanging racks, and bring in shopping carts!  Yesterday morning a friend and I hit a couple sales in town.  I've been on the hunt for small flower pots and bowls to use as I split and transplant my miniature African violets.  
Here's a cup and saucer I scored yesterday.  This is the first time I've tried planting them in a container without drainage.  Normally I water the violets from the bottom, so this is a growing experiment.
Really hoping it works out because I think they are soooooo ca-uuuuuute in little teacups.

At the rummage sale I also bought a low-carb cookbook, and for supper I made chicken chili.  I had all the ingredients except for a packet of pre-mixed chili seasoning.  Online I found some recipes for making at-home chili seasoning, so I combined a few ideas and came up with my own spice concoction.  It was a hit!                                   

Auntie's Chili (& Taco?) Seasoning

4 TBS chili powder
2 TBS cumin
3 tsp sea salt
2 tsp black pepper
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp crushed red pepper (this is optional, I may try leaving this out next time)
1 tsp stevia or other sweetener
1/4 tsp ground white pepper
1/4 tsp ground coriander seeds
1/4 tsp ground cloves (sounds strange but give it a try!)

Mix everything up in a small bowl, and store the leftovers for next time.

Note:  I only added about a TBS of the spice mix to my batch of chicken chili.  I think a little bit goes a long way, but we don't like real hot or spicy food.  That's why I may not add the red pepper flakes next time.  It's just a matter of preference.  I'd like to try this as a taco seasoning too, someday.

Last weekend when we were in Milwaukee, I was able to run down to northern Illinois to spend a few hours at my nephew's First Communion, then see two of my nephews play in their first-ever Little League baseball game.
Hoping you don't mind a few bragging photos from this proud Auntie...

Middle nephew's first up-to-bat...

It's a base hit!

Youngest nephew's first up-to-bat...

Struck out...

It's a gloomy and rainy day, so I'm gonna spend it in brightest room in the house, my studio.
I'm struggling a bit with energy and inspiration, which happens like clockwork this time of year.

I'm so thankful to have this blog to think about and keep updated.
It challenges me to seek out the joy of little everyday things.
We all know about the terrible events that have been happening in our country, the quagmire of our government,
and all of those things over which we seem to have no control.
It's an energy drain to think about this stuff all the time.

I think what I love so much about blogging
is that it allows me to occupy the throne in my own little corner of the world.
I sure hope you enjoy reading about it.



  1. I love your blog. Keep it up.

    1. Thank you so much Judi! Sure love doing it. :)