Life in the A-Frame

Life in the A-Frame

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Blue Heron research

BLUE HERON.[Little Blue Heron.]
ARDEA COEPRULEA, Linn. [Egretta caerulea.]
I found out that what I've always called cranes are Blue Herons. The blue ones are the mature birds older than 2 years, and who are of mating age. The white ones are the younger ones who haven't matured yet. They can get very large, with a wing span of around 41 inches.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The tale of two cranes

Two very large cranes hang out by what is left of our tank. They have taken to perching on the railing of the bridge. There is one white crane and one blue. They have also learned to ignore my dog Amos, who is about 1/3 of their size. They just look at him while he barks and they wait until he is about 10 feet away before they move. I, on the other hand, scare them as soon as I come out my front door. They fly off immediately, looking like miniature pterodactyls in the sky.
These pictures were taken by opening the front door just a tiny crack, and sneaking my hand up to the camera, quickly pointing and shooting.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

My Daughter Sews

We gave her a sewing machine for Christmas when she was 11. I taught her how to thread it and sew a seam. She started out making little pillows that she would stuff and personalize. Now, at 19, she alters her own clothes, and makes garments with or without a pattern. This is a pretty creamy pink skirt with pink flowers on it that she made from a pattern.

This is a cute button down cotton blouse that she made by cutting apart an old blouse and using it as her pattern. It is a white background with red cherries on it and she used red buttons. She even made button holes.
She has turned her brother's room upstairs into a sewing room. She just came downstairs to show me what she had done to a light purple shirt that she used to wear in 8th grade. She made it into a tank top with a drawstring neckline that she wants to wear under a white sweater. Creative!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Remember This Fellow?

Ace was smaller than Amos in this picture. He was about 6 weeks old here.
Time went by. Three months later here he is-about 40 pounds.

He used to be scared of this bridge.

Nice sit! Good boy!

Good ideas!

Thanks for the ideas on how to display these carvings. Let me see what I can find at the craft store and maybe I can show you a picture soon, Thanks again~

Thursday, January 15, 2009

How to display the tiny carvings

The carvings I featured yesterday were kept in a large glass jar in my in-law's house. There may be about 50 of them altogether. Each family member received one in their Christmas stocking a few years ago and recently we picked out another one from the jar. I don't know how to display these. Do you have any ideas? I thought about keeping a few of them on display and donating the rest to some museum or organization-maybe our Uncle's alma mater. I haven't talked about this to Mike, so he and his siblings can discuss it later. It would be a shame to keep them in a drawer, in a closet- never to be seen by anyone. If anyone has a suggestion, drop me a note, please.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Artistic heritage

I am fairly artistic and my daughter is very artistic. I think she got her real talent from Mike's side of the family. Mike's dad and Uncle were both accomplished architects and artists. Mike's uncle became a recluse before I married into the family, so I never got to meet him. I learned that after he retired, he spent his time alone, making knives or doing carvings. These are pictures of some of the carvings he did from peach (and other) seeds. Mike said that he would spend hours carving with tiny tools, and polishing the seed carvings. We now have inherited some of his knives and art.This is a tiny elephant who is fairly simple in designed compared to the other carvings.
An owl who has tiny talons curved in anticipation of perching on a limb.

This unknown creature is an example of one of the more intricate designs. I wish I were a better photographer so that you could clearly see all the detail. He has long fangs, long claws and a ridged back.
Each of these little creatures are perfect in symmetry. Amazing.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Waiting patiently

Granny can make any animal behave. She comes outside with a snack for the dogs. They come to her excitedly. She walks to the edge of the porch and tells them to sit. She allows Amos to get on the porch because he is so small and doesn't do any damage. The other dog, Tank, has been trained to stay off. They both sit and wait patiently.
My dog, Amos, gets a bite. Tank, who belongs to one of my nephews, is a full grown pit bull. He waits patiently.

Tank gets a bite while Amos waits, and wishes for one more turn.

Sunday, January 11, 2009


Mike's dad has been critical since last Sunday and doesn't seem to be improving. They are trying different treatments today. I hope to update with better news later. Thank you all for your prayers.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Saved and recycled

Someone asked me where I got the bottle for my limoncello gift. I save all kinds of glass bottles and try to recycle them. The bottle pictured is a recycled amaretto bottle. I forget what brand this is but I just scrubbed off the label and re-used it. I also used an empty wine bottle, maple syrup bottle and balsamic vinegar bottle. This particular bottle was the prettiest, so I used it for the picture. If anyone knows of uses for gallon wine bottles, let me know. Our trash collection center has stopped taking glass for recycling and I hope it is just temporary. I cannot just throw away glass!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

My sister's "bright" idea

I'm wearing a Christmas gift from my sister-can you see it? Can you? It is an apron covered with green leaves and yellow parrots and she made it herself. She made all the women one. Actually she made all the men one, too. She also gave the men a BBQ brush and BBQ sauce-hint, hint. It might not be bright outside, but just look at me inside!

Almost gone

The cool front came in Sunday morning and I think we have a pretty good chance of rain soon. That would be great because my poor tank is almost dry. We did have catfish in there but I haven't seen any in a long while. The big cranes are able to walk all the way across now and they come daily to eat the fish. We need about 3 or 4 inches of hard rain to put some water back in the tank.
Since the cool air came, my mood is much better and I apologize to those coping with ice. Also, I know that there are places in the world without any water. Things are back in perspective for me, I hope. The house is closed up again and my first priority is getting rid of the flies! White chicken chili for supper.

Texas Brown

I know it is January now and I know that tomorrow it is supposed to get down into the 40's, but for today it is 80 degrees and so dry. The house is hot and I am not turning on the air conditioner. I am just going to be cranky for a while. Most everything is brown and brittle. This pasture across the road should have some kind of winter grass growing but it is too dry. I do feel for those who are in drastic cold right now or are snowbound and I should be glad that I am in short sleeves, with the house wide open and that I was just outside sitting in the sun. If there weren't so many flies, maybe I wouldn't be so cranky. Or maybe, if I just looked around outside some more, or sat on the deck and watched Mike BBQ some chicken wings, I would stop being irritable. I'm done complaining. I just looked at the weather forecast and Monday is supposed to be really cold with a good chance of rain. I'm going out to enjoy this while it lasts.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Southern New Year

We had a traditional Southern meal on New Year's Day. The legend is that if you have salt pork and black eyed peas then you will have good luck in the coming year. That's a good enough reason for us to eat this very delicious meal. You boil the pork, slice it up, dredge it in flour, then fry it. You also put chunks of it in the black eyed peas. I added fresh greens and cornbread to the meal. Top with chopped onions and a little mustard if you wish.

Liittle Chapel In the Woods

Mike and I attended the wedding of one of our nieces last week. It took place in a beautiful chapel with huge stained glass windows. I didn't take pictures at that time but got some good photos of our family at the reception. Here are Mike and I having refreshments. Best wishes to the bride and groom!