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 51years.

Friday, July 12, 2019


It's raining today and I'm so glad because the ground was so dry, making it difficult to weed and I needed a day to run errands in town and pay my car insurance, get some banking done, get grocery and to post on my blog and a good day to rest...

 I was praying for good haying weather and the men finished cutting, baling and storing over 400 huge round bales before the rain came.  Now they have to wait for good haying weather to do the other fields. Today, they worked inside the barn, cleaning pens.

I've been doing much of the same,  weeding and repairing and if the weeds just could stop from coming back, it would be great. Where I used mulch, it keeps them at bay but I don't have enough mulch for all the beds.

I still find time to do a bit of baking but not every day.

I made a large batch meatballs and flattened the mixture on a large piece of parchment paper and cut them into small squares with a knife. A serrated knife doesn't cut well I found out. Then I roll them to about an inch balls.

I baked them in the oven and after they cooled I packaged them in portions and put them in the freezer. When I need some in a hurry, they are popped in the toaster oven to warm up and they are ready in minutes.

I guess we were hungry. I forgot to take a photo before cutting it. I bake pie shells and freeze them and use them when I need them.  It doesn't take long to make a quiche. Today we had homemade pepperoni pizza but no photo as the men arrived early for lunch. It was raining so hard, they were hungry and a bit wet.

These are big pieces of logs that were in the hedge and I managed to move them there to be cut with a  chainsaw. They were too heavy to lift when they were wet but they have dried in this hot weather.  My husband will cut them when he has time. Can you see my Yaya carrots growing in the small raised bed at the top of the picture? We had some in a salad a few days ago and they were so flavorful. I save spent coffee ground and sprinkle some around the stems to keep the rust fly away so they won't get wormy.

One of these straw bales floated as far away as the barn in the flood and I brought it back with a wheelbarrow after it dried up enough so I could lift it in the wheelbarrow. I still have to recover another one that settled in the treed area in the back.  On Friday, I finished weeding the long border by the hedge and replaced some lost soil and spread the straw under thorny rose bushes to keep moisture in and weeds out.

I know that this doesn't look like much but close up, this was a huge pile of compost and soil that I wheelbarrowed from my flower beds all the way by the shed and I've used most of it to replace where the soil has washed away, here and there.  And that's what's left of it but I'm not done yet... It was all hauled out of my flower garden by the shed. I had another pile but that one has been shoveled in where the soil needed to be replaced. It's a slow process because I have to weed first, replace the lost soil before I can plant or reseed and I can only work on one area at a time. plant.

Right next to the pile of compost and soil you just saw, I've fixed the big hole left from the flood damage and reseeded that part of the lawn by the road where the currents were so strong during the flood. The water was up to about one inch of the top of that rock. The grass is just starting to grow and has to be watered morning and evening in this heat.

This is the place where my compost piles used to be. I pulled all that tall couch grass and removed the roots and planted some pickling cucumbers,  next to the hedge, in full sun.  They are starting to grow...

At the bottom of the photo, I also removed a big piece of black plastic that was buried under the turf, on which we had put bulk lime for the lawn some years ago and also some cedar branch mulch when we clipped our cedar hedge but over the years, the weeds grew over the lime and the mulch and became part of a weedy lawn that we mowed.

 I've been wanting to remove the plastic for quite a while but I never seem to get to it as something more pressing comes up. I shoveled the lime in pails to use on the lawn and reseeded the area, now I'm waiting for the grass to grow again. It was heavier work than I had thought and I did a lot of sweating but I'm happy now that it's finally off my list.

This is my wood chipper that toppled over in the flood and now the motor will have to be repaired or replaced. There is a flat tire on the other side and it may have caused it to topple over. A mechanic friend of my husband is looking into it but there's no rush on this. Water got in the oil. Not a good thing.

This is the section that I reclaimed by weeding tall Burdocks, Angelica, Couch Grass and Dandelion, Creeping Charlies and Butterfly Weed and planted eight blueberry bushes. They are still very small.
I need to prune the dead branches. I also planted two types of rhubarbs, one called Canada Red and the other is called German Wine. I have put some of the soil and compost that was displaced in the flood in this area as the soil was quite compacted.

I've been deadheading my many tall bearded irises, here and in the back but as you can see, I took the photo before I deadheaded these and weeded especially on the other side.  Now we can see the brick border.

We are so lucky to have a couple of resident eagles near our farm. They have been here for a long time. They had their babies and I'm glad that they have rebuilt their nest after hurricane Arthur destroyed their tree and nest in July 2014. I wish I had more time to take photos of them.

The Roma tomatoes are starting to appear on the plants. The plants were mulched with daylily mulch and so far it's working well to keep the weeds at bay.

Mr. Basil is doing well,  growing next to the tomatoes in the daylily flowerbed.

We have been eating peas. These are the early ones.

We have had deers coming in the garden and munching on my peas, beets and knocking down my broccoli and other brassicas. At first, I thought it was cutworms but when I dug them out, I didn't find any worms, except on one plant, I found a very tiny maggot but it wasn't a cutworm. I quickly put up some supports to make some kind of barrier and hung up some old socks and poured some Lever 2000 scented shower gel and it's doing the trick. So far, they have not returned to the garden. Every night, I go and pout some shower gel on the socks to keep them away.

The deers also chewed up the tips of the budding hydrangea on the front lawn. So far they have only chewed on one bush and left the other one untouched.

Now for some pretties. I'm lucky they bloomed at all because they had about 6 inches of soil over them. Peonies that are buried too deep will not bloom. I removed as much soil as carefully as I could and used a water hose to remove the soil closer to the buds.

These were the one I replanted last year. They were also buried with about 6 inches of soil and compost.  The tall one on the right was self-seeded and there are two different types in there. One has still not bloomed. They are much taller than the ones on the left but still very pretty.

This one will have to be dug up in the fall and moved as the sprawling white rose bush is moving in its space and shading it from the sun. So it didn't get many blossoms this summer.

This one had lots of blossoms but not enough support to hold the heavy blooms from falling. 

One of my rosebushes planted in the memory of my parents.

The Sundrop flowers lighting that part of the yard. It's 9:52 pm and still raining.

Again, sorry for the many photos and long post. Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment.  I may have offended some bloggers by mentioning that I get many"lurkers" who visit but don't leave comments and I hope I didn't offend any with that comment. It's just that I have been getting something like 193, 148, 134  visits each post and sometimes more, but not a lot of comments in ratio to the visits. I just wondered why they like to visit my blog but don't like to leave comments. I really don't mind people who visit without leaving comments.
Stay safe and enjoy the summer. Keep the people of southern California in your prayers. They are still having so many aftershocks and are fearing a bigger earthquake at any time.
Hugs, Julia

Wednesday, June 26, 2019


It's been a beautiful several weeks and I've been living in the gardens with the mosquitos. I spray my thin long sleeve shirt and my straw hat with Deep Wood repellent and it keeps them away without smearing that stuff on my skin. The mosquitos seem to come out in the morning and in the evening. When they get too bad near the hedge, I sometimes smoke them away with smoldering egg cartons. I keep an eye on the carton as they can catch on fire if there's a breeze.

Today is a rainy day so I did things indoors like soup and biscuits for lunch, and I took some garden photos in between raindrops for my poor neglected blog. I went to church for mass and devotions and went to visit my aunt in the hospital, made a nice salmon dinner and uploaded my photos on the computer then my i-library didn't want to cooperate. I despise those external drives on my MacBook Air.  Occasionally, they play hide on and seek on me... Grrr... I lost some great flower photos. Oh well...

I've got a lot of work done in the yard but still, I'm not caught up as usual. The weatherman announced showers every day for a week. I moved tones of soil left by the flood, reseeded the damaged spots in the backyard, weeded, planted, pulled out old clumps that overtook the garden, etc. My to-do list is being checked off but somehow, it keeps growing every day. I like to check things off so I can see my progress.

I babysat my little great granddaughter while her mama took her brother to an award ceremony at his school. He received a Citizen Award for being such a sweet helper to his classmates and the teacher. We are all so proud of him. I don't have a picture of this happy event.

My little great granddaughter had a great time at my house but she moves faster than a mosquito and kept me on my toes. I got her to laugh for a picture. After a few hours, I was exhausted... Like her big brother, she is so polite.

These daylilies are usually the first to bloom. This year, they will be later because my husband built a carport and they have more shade. This one on the end is getting more sun than the others.

This spring before the weeds started growing, this area was covered with about by about 6 inches of soil and compost from my son's garden that migrated here in the flood. Free fertile soil for me but so much hard work to remove and spread in my garden.

There were a lot of big weeds like Angelica, Burdocks, Creeping Charlies,  Milkweeds, Couch Grass, Dandelions, and other weeds growing at the end of the back garden that I cut down this week. This is the third year in a row that I reclaim a little bit more space for my vegetable garden by getting rid of the weeds by digging them out totally. The burdock has big long roots and is difficult to pull. Pictures don't do it justice but I know how hard it was to remove the excess soil and compost. These weeds are beside my shed and my son's shed in the back.

Early this spring after I planted my blueberries, at the end of the newly reclaimed space I put an old strip of jute carpet down to keep the Creeping Charlies from spreading in the garden.  The carpet was to keep the creeping Charlies from going to seeds before I could get to them.   I'll remove the carpet and I will plant some rhubarbs there. I have bought two varieties, one is called Canada red and the other is called German Wine. I wanted some red rhubarbs. I have an old heirloom variety that I will transplant next spring or this fall. They didn't do so well after my husband tilled them under by accident.

This is the end of the garden after I weeded and chopped down the tall weeds.
Two of my broccoli plants were attacked by some worm eating the roots.

One variety of peas are started to blossom.

My spinach is doing so well this year. The leaves are bigger than my hands. This is one big leaf under my hand. We had so much rain, everything is growing well.

This is Couch Grass and it has taken over my old compost area. It is in seeds now and I will have to tackle them sometime this week between raindrops. The roots have to be pulled out or they will root all over again. They are difficult to get rid of but not impossible.

My seat swings are in dire need of cleaning and repainting from the flood damage but it will have to wait. I still enjoy sitting in there for a rest and a break from the sun in my dirty garden cloths. I look like a hillbilly in my old silly straw hat.

My Lady Kim late blooming Lilac is starting to bloom and one of the hostas is getting some buds.

With the anticipation of all the rain we are supposed to get this week, I had to reinforce my peonies. They are growing so tall this year with all the rain we had.  I'm afraid they will all droop before I can enjoy their beauty. I have more by the shed.

The tall burgundy and yellow bearded irises are on their way out while others are just starting to bloom in the background.

These mauve irises behind the big rock were given to me by my daughter Jackie. My daylilies in the front are just beginning to bud.
I know this is a lot of photos but I lost some of my best from my photo library when my external drive hickupped because it wasn't ejected properly.

I'm thankful for my faithful visitors  who leave comments. I have so many many visitors who are lurkers. I would like to read even small comments from you.

Enjoy the rest of the week.
Hugs, Julia