About Me

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I'm a mother of four grandmother of seven and great grandmother of one. I have many hobbies and interests but gardening and rug hooking are my main interest at the moment. I live with my husband in the house that we built with the help of my brothers and have been married for 49 years.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

GOOD NEWS OF GREAT JOY

My flight to Ottawa went very smoothly and a very pregnant wobbly Christine picked me up at the airport yesterday morning with little James in tow.

 This morning I was awakened by my son in law at 5:30 am to tell me that he was taking Christine to the hospital. She had gotten up for a snack and as she sat down on her chair, her water broke. It's quite a long drive to the hospital and the doctor was called. On arrival, Christine was examined and it was  determined that she was in labor and 5 minutes before the doctor arrived the baby was born on the bed. Two push and he was skyrocketed out of the warmth into a cool room. He was born at 7:21 am.



Baby brother weighs 8lb 2 oz and was 2 weeks and 2 days early. Both mother and baby are doing well.


My smiling daughter with her brand new baby boy.


I think that he looks beautiful even though he wouldn't pose for the camera.



Daddy is happy that everything went so fast and well.

James was having a little adjustment to do but he came around rather quickly.



 At first he was upset at his mommy and didn't wanted to look at the baby but before long he shared some soup with mommy and even said Bye bye baby brother as we were leaving.



James and I have bonded almost instantly and I'm having a lot of fun with him.

I'm off to bed and probably will not have much time to blogg. Maybe I'll manage a few comments so please bear with me. Being a nanny at my age is challenging but I'm getting her done.   lol...

I'm off to catch up on my Zzzs.
JB

Thursday, February 21, 2013

SHREDDING EVIDENCE

Who can pass on a great bargain? If I come across something I like and is in great shape and the price is right, I'll buy it. I've done that with books, cloths, household and hobby items, etc.  until the shelves are full and the drawers are full.

Now there are some items that I use a lot and I can justify getting it and I have no intention of getting rid of it... but I realized  that I've been storing a lot of stuff for future use like books I'll never read, or already read, things so I've been on a decluttering mission  and today I filled up my van and I mean filled it up with boxes after boxes and took it all to Value Village drop-off centre. It's amazing how much space that it  has freed and it feels good. Last Friday I cleared a whole bunch of ceramic bisque and that felt good too. I never took pictures of all the boxes I packed in my van today but it was a lot.

There will never be enough time to do all the things we would like to do and before you know it we are getting old rather fast. Man, it just springs up on you and then you realize that you'll never catch up. Too much stuff weighs on a person wether you realize it or not because it makes like less manageable.

I have an old paper shredder  that I bought secondhand when I had my ceramic business and I shredded newspapers to pack the fragile greenware for customers and it shred paper  so fine and I love this baby. This week  I've gone through years of personal papers, road maps etc and I shredded papers to my heart content.


See how fine it shreads. It's an old shredder used by the RCMP years ago. It's very noisy and very heavy duty.


This is just a sample. I filled three big clear bags today  and I ran out of bags. It will all go to recycle.I have many garbage bags filled with shredded paper but I'm not sure if they will take them in black plastic bags. They may have to be transferred into clear bags later.

We have run out of shelf space in the office and have to put boxes under the desk and table and that makes it almost impossible to clean the floor.

 We still have to go through office papers and oh boy, that's going to be a huge job. That's for another time.

After delivering my boxes today, I went to pay for the scratched paint repair job on the guy's truck fender and it cost me less than the guy had quoted me. He had quoted me a bargain because I was a customer for $395.50 tax included. When I went to pay the collision centre that did the work for the dealer and they charged me $349.99 tax included so I had a saving $45.51



In my rush to post I almost forgot about the thoughtful Valentine I unexpectedly got in the mail this week. It arrived at the right moment when I had been feeling down and it brought a big smile on my face. Kim from My Field of Dreams is such a sweet and thoughtful blogger friend and this is the second presents that she has surprised me with. Thank you so much for brightening my day. You are a real treasure. I'm sending you love and  hugs for now.

The wind is blowing and it feels colder tonight.
Stay safe and warm.
JB

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

CAN YOU TRUST YOUR CAR DEALER?


Can you trust your own car dealer? I used to trust  my car dealer but not anymore.  They are really after as much money as they can squeeze out of their customers.



Last week I brought my car in to have a diagnostic done on an engine light that kept going on and off and I got a new fuel valve replaced for $309.00 and I scratch paint from someone pumper when I pulled out of their crowded parking lot and they wanted me to pay $395.50 to have the repair done on the other truck.  I said that I would pay and I got the name of the owner and called and left a detail message on his phone with my name and phone number. I never got a call from the truck.

Today I got a call from the dealership and asked me to come and pay them by Tuesday as the guy's truck was going to be brought in to repaint the bumper.  Now I'll pay for the damage but it will be the last time I'm taking my car there.  I'm never going to bring my car there for repairs or to buy another car. I'll be done with them.

Not too long ago, my husband took his truck there  to get it checked and they told him that it would cost $1500.00 to have a new transmission put in. My husband took the truck somewhere else and asked them to check it.They checked it, they changed the oil filter and gas filters and my have done something else and they charged $150.00 and the truck well.  My husband is furious and also agrees with me that they have lost us as customers.

A friend of ours agrees with us also that their parking lot is atrocious with cars parked all over the place.
It's certainly not senior friendly. He's also a senior and not satisfied with their service.

Thanks for listening to my rant. I'm really annoyed with them.

I hope that you only have good news today.
JB

Saturday, February 9, 2013

SOME DAYS, IT'S NOT WORTH GETTING OUT OF BED

How was your weekend? Mine was on the hellish side.
I didn't take pictures because I don't take my Canon camera to work so you'll have to take my words for it. These are older pictures of the same pens that flooded. First the pictures and then my story of woes.


Those are the bigger calves in the pen that flooded. It's a long pen that is divided to suite the how many calves we have to keep separate by size.


My baby calves are along the back wall where those small windows are on the top of the pictures.


These two pens is where we keep the younger calves  and they are divided again by their size and age.


If you look closely, you can see the water bowl that flooded beside the ear of # 459. These pictures were taken last summer.



The calf barn is right next to the silos and run all the way to the back.  The milk house is not seen on this picture and is to the left of this picture.


Friday  morning I went to work and the first thing I noticed when I went to give the grain to the small calves was that the cows had tore the hinges on one side of the little gate that we open in order to clean a section of the little pens. It was a sturdy little gate but they still broke it. A cow must have mounted another cow and pushed against the little gate. Those cows weigh a lot. Luckily the little gate was still hanging although lopsided,  and no cows got out through it.

I thawed the copper water taps and that only took a minute and I gave water to the weaned  calves.

Next the water trough was badly frozen in the heifer barn in the back because the heifers have chewed the insulating foam on the water pipes and the warming cable was no longer working to keep the water from freezing. Heifers are so destructive.  I had to go get some very hot water and pour on the pipe and got the water going and broke the thick ice with a hammer so they could drink. They kept trying to lick my face and my glasses were getting all steamed up...

My mittens got all wet and my fingers were frozen. I had to go back and forth to the sink to get them warm up in hot water. Then I had to close the door in the back but it was rubbing on the floor because of the frost and it was hard to close and as I pulled hard the handle which is as old as Adam became detached on the bottom and is hanging from the top now.  Just not my day...

Last evening I noticed that two of the small water bowls were frozen in the smaller calf section. Just a thin layer of ice but enough to stop the flow of water.
I  went to thaw the first one and as my back was turned one of the calf mounted me from behind, yeah.... She put her two front legs on my shoulder and let me tell you, she was heavy.  I had just washed my barn jacket that afternoon... I got the water bowls going and  they all drank frantically and I left the barn to come home for supper.

This morning I braved the nasty storm to get to the barn and instead of going to the milk house like I usually do to warm  the milk for the little calf, I went directly to the calf barn to see if the taps were frozen. The first thing I noticed is the sound of water running. I went to investigate and I didn't had to go far to see what was the matter.

The water in the bowl I had thawed the night before had run all night because the float didn't go down to shut the flow of water when the calves were done drinking. It flooded the whole section where all 15 calves were bedded and it was one big mucky mess of poop, bedding and water in the mix...

 I called my husband who had just finished milking. "Turn off the water valve" he said and I'll be there in about 5 to 10 minutes...   that's a long time. ... I turned off a valve in the ceiling and shut off water to the whole side of the barn including the heifer barn in the back lol...  I don't know about these things...
One valve shuts down the calf section and the other is for the rest of the heifer barn, who knew?...

 Anyway, the water had overflowed the pens and was now running in the alley way  about 3 inches deep. It was deeper in the pens because the pens have sides ... It was one big mess of poop, bedding and water in the mix...

Since we have to keep the smaller calves separate from the bigger ones because they can hurt them, I opened the big  calving pen  on the other side of the alleyway to let all smaller calves in there. But one didn't want to go in instead she wanted to jump and run back and forth in the wet alleyway  and she slipped and got all dirty including her face. I got them all in there and closed the gate and my husband arrived.

In the process of moving the 8 bigger one, two got away because my husband didn't see that one gate was still open when he let them out of their pen and one of them bushed against this little gate and damaged the hinges.  Two little  gates damages in two days....

The boys cleaned off the  flooded pens after I went home and most of the water in the alley and put fresh bedding  but I still had lots of cleaning to do before I could feed the calves this evening. We don't clean the pens as often when it's cold and just keep adding bedding every day. It doesn't take long to accumulate.
So here is my blog post for today. Tomorrow is another day. Hope it goes smoother. I've got my share of Murphy's law for the last two days.

Hope that you all stay safe and warm. Thanks for visiting.
JB




Thursday, February 7, 2013

HEALTH BOOKS GALORE

When I turned 50, years ago..... the Rodale Press targeted me as if they knew that I was interested in shaping up health wise.  They started sending me tempting health books information to view and every month they had a new offer and I was buying their books. I learned a lot from them. Some I kept and some I gave  away. I eventually built up a health library. There are more not shown here...


I'm running out of room on my library shelves so some books are not in the right section.

Around 10 years ago I received a lot of health books and some other books from a friend who wanted to clean out her library after her husband passed away. I added them to my library but I had to buy shelves because my library was  already full.



Some of those I bought at the thrift store and the rest were given to me by my friend. The health books are on the bottom shelf.

Now yesterday morning I got a call from an elderly woman whom my husband and I met at a church breakfast last year and we chatted and learned a little about each others.  She remembered our conversation and had some books that she thought we might be interested  in as she was cleaning her library too.


These I got yesterday from the elderly couple. Now if I could get the time to read these...

She was a retired teacher who worked for the University Forestry Department. She called herself an outdoor teacher and her 93 years old  husband was a retired University Engineer professor. Both remarkable people.
They arrive with guess what... two big cloth bags full of beautiful health books.
My husband invited them in and we chatted for a spell and they were so interesting and knowledgeable.

I'll have to reorganize my health library now so that all the health  books are in the same place.

I finished filing year end  papers today and I also finished calculating the  three months of HST ( harmonized sales tax) for the farm last evening. My plan was to hook after supper but we got company so I didn't pull a single hoop again...

Thanks for stopping by.  I appreciate your visit and comments so much.
It's minus -21 C. right now, that's -5.8 Fahrenheit. It's supposed to go to -24C.  equal to  -11.2 F. I bet the water will be frozen in my end of the barn in the morning.

JB

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

GOD ANSWERS PRAYERS IN HIS TIME

In my last post I  mentioned that I was getting things ready to sell my bisque. I have boxes and boxes all labeled and  I wasn't even finished pricing them  today but I was almost done.  I was waiting to finish pricing and I was planning to advertise the bisque sale.


This is only one section of boxed bisque. This picture appeared in my last post...


On Saturday a lady who used to be a customer of mine 10 years ago, called me looking to purchase some ceramic glazes and acrylic paints as there are no dealers in our city and she had to order some from Toronto and the shipping is very costly for a small studio and the paint and glazes are pricy too. She wanted to start teaching ceramic again.

 I gave her an appointment for  today and she looked at all my boxed bisque and she bought it all. I never would have thought that she'd be the one to buy my bisque. She knew the quality of my bisque however and didn't hesitated. Her husband gave her his blessing and we shook hands on the deal. She was all smile.

It will be here for a little while until she can move it all to her place. I gave her a great deal that she couldn't refuse. We were both happy. God did listen to my prayers and he answers them in his time and I'm thankful.  Thank You Jesus.

If we ask and believe with all our heart, it will happen... not always in the way we envision but it will happen in God's time, with patience.

When my basement was full of  thousands of heavy plaster molds for ceramic and every studios had closed in my area, I was stuck with thousands of molds and no one was interested in buying. I asked Jesus to help me by sending someone to buy my molds. I prayed a lot always asking and waiting. I did not advertise as I was working everyday and didn't had much time to organize a sale. Then God send the big flood and thankfully the water seeped in the basement.... I know....

 If the water came up one extra inch higher, it would have come through the window and the insurance would not have covered the damage as we were insured for seepage only.

We had a sump pump keeping the water level to a minimum and nothing was in danger of getting wet until the power company turned off the power on our grid. The water rose to over 4 feet and the molds were damaged beyond salvage. Shelves buckled under the tremendous weight and all the molds came crashing down. They were totally ruined. It took weeks to let the molds drain so they could be taken outside to dry in the sun. Wet mold are very very heavy.

Heres comes God, with a big fat cheque from the insurance and my damaged molds were taken away. I was thankful to have gotten rid of the a great amount of molds that I wasn't using anymore and receive cash for them. All the ones up in the garage were spared however and I still have them. I need to pray some more but at least they are not in danger of being flooded.


 This is my beautiful daughter Christine overflowing with grace. Keeping little brother safe till he's ready to  make his appearance and meet James face to face... Big brother is waiting.

 James wants to catch or bust those  giant bubbles and he's having so much fun.



I think that Daddy has more fun playing with Play-Doh than James. Something with wheels is more to his liking.


I bet he wants to push the buttons on the camera or look at himself in the lense. He looks like he has something on his mind. Notice the pick up truck on his shirt.


James love anything with wheels. He love big tractors, firetrucks,  train, cars, buses, trucks and like I said, anything with wheels. I can detect a big smile in mommy's arms. I think he likes his boots too. They look like little tug boats.


James is playing with dadd's tablet. You can see the smily reflection on the tablet.


Daddy is reading him a bedtime story before putting James to bed. He's a little charmer.



James is ready for his big boy bed but still wants to play to the last minute....
 For those who asked when I was going away to my daughter... I'm flying to Ottawa on February 25th. I'm hoping for no storm or wind and for a smooth flight. The last time it was cold in the little plane and we had some turbulence and  snow in places and we were enclosed in a white mist for part of the way. I don't like flying in little planes.

I always love your comments and thanks for visiting.
JB

Sunday, February 3, 2013

MISSING IN ACTION

I've been very lazy about blogging lately, I've had the winter blahs, I've come out of it but I just didn't thought anything was worthy or exiting enough to bother blogging about. I've been working steadily but slowly on filing lots of papers for year end, getting them in order and matching invoices with statements. I'm not finished but this is what I've done so far, 6 inches deep. My fat kitty looks exasperated, lol... I found him at the thrift store and he was missing his whiskers on the right. I cut black bristles from my broom and glued them in the little holes so they match on both side. I love this fat quiet undemanding cat. He sits quietly in my office and keeps me company. Here he serves as a paper weight.



Today I've been working on pricing  my ceramic bisque boxes for sale. The contents of each box by categories and each box is numbered. I'm practically giving it away. I don't have time to go sell it at the flee market. I just need to get rid of it and hope that once the word gets out, it will go quickly before we get another flood in our basement. We had to tear all the walls down and removed wooden shelves over the whole basement in the last flood. I'm too old to start over again and I'm certainly not interested in being in business anymore. Maybe I'm ready for the rocking chair and some knitting needles. lol...


Starting on the far end I have animals, then plaques, then native pieces, then dragons, wizzards, dinosaurs, angels, cherubs and teddy bears.



Here I have some figurines, Santas, Christmas pieces and canister sets. You can see the sticker with box number and price.



More boxes to figure the price.

The buyer can tell me which categories they are interested in and I've got everything listed in a scribbler. The boxes are all carefully packed so there's no need to for them  pack boxes. It's cash and carry.
I'm not sure when I'll be ready to sell. Soon I hope. I have kept a little bit of bisque to paint at a later date for a pass time.


I've made a batch of pesto from my frozen pre-mix and just added the garlic, sunflower seeds (since I got an unpleasant reaction to pine nuts a while back with a very bitter taste in my mouth that lasted for days)  some parmesan cheese, salt  and a bit more olive oil



Here is the finished pesto from basil I grew in my garden last summer.



I sautéed some chicken and added it to the pesto and spaghetti.
I added a handful of garlic cloves in the last 5 minute of cooking the spaghetti and added them to the mix.
One thing about me, I see little faces everywhere I look and that big garlic clove in the plate  looks like it has a little face on it.  I see little eyebrows, eyes, nose and mouth. His head is bald and he has a manly chin. Am I seeing things? lol....  Can you hear what he says?... Oh God, I need to get away...


I ripped out my fishing girl on my rug and when I was to retrace it in another location, I lost the pattern and had to draw another one by looking at the picture on my computer, lol. I still haven't transferred it to my rug. I'm really dragging my feet on this rug...


I've picked up another charcoal wool skirt  at the thrift store and it had a few moth holes in the front so it went directly in the washer as soon as I got it home and went through a hot wash and in the dryer with a fabric softener sheet. I asked the clerk  to reduce it because of those two little holes and he gave it to me half price.

I made a batch of crispy oatmeal  coconut cookies but they are all gone and I didn't bother to take a picture. My husband wants me to make more...

Next post I will post some pictures of James.

Stay well, safe and warm. We are having 6 more weeks of winter thanks to Mr Groundhog who saw his shadow Saturday...
JB