"Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands........" 1 Thessalonians 4:11

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

The beginning of a country cottage garden

is forming in the back corner of our back yard
When we first moved out here........I was creating large gardens far out 
away from the yard.  It was a lot of work to drag watering hoses
and to keep varmints out.
Plus......I could never actually enjoy the garden's beauty sitting out on the back porch in the afternoon because the gardens were
too far away to see.
I started the garden around the already existing roses bushes. They grow 
and bloom so well here.
I want to grow more roses, Lantana, and Chrysanthemums as well as
Zinna in this space. 

My husband's building is the perfect wind block and this section of the yard can
be seen from the back patio

I dragged the ornamental iron archway from the back garden and 
am using it for the entrance to my cottage garden.
I have a Queen Elizabeth Climbing rose......in the container....
hoping for soft pink roses to soon grow up and over the entrance.
My husband also placed the antique fencing that we found a while back
at a junk store. We had just enough to go around the garden area!

I have been busy removing the grass and weeds.
I plan on making a cement/stone path that winds around
in the grounds

and I have also planted a few lantana.


I had my first visitor.....this large horned toad.......
it has it's eyes closed........playing dead.

Speaking of visitors......the yellow headed
blackbirds have made their annual visit to the 
grounds

They make their loud squawking noises and give us a wonderful
show as they enjoy the feeders.

And we have a temporary house guest......this is Ellie.
She is my daughter's cat.  Ellie will stay with us for 
about a year until our daughter returns for her.
Our daughter has taken a job in Afghanistan......
please keep her in prayer......as a parent......
I worry for her safety.
I hope this finds you all safe and out of harm's way 
from all of the storms that are crossing the country!


Saturday, April 22, 2017

UPDATE: on damaged meadow

at the risk of sounding like a broken record, once again I am posting about the
meadow on our property that was damaged  in January 2016
by a utility company
here is the previous post on my blog at this link
bloggers, beware this is not my usual post

and the damage looked like this

and this after the crew left.............
after a long year of phone calls, emails back and forth, 
meetings...........damage payment and negotiations accepted and agreed upon, 
the land now has a fence around it

and Mother Nature worked her healing hand across it all
and now it is more full of wildflowers than I could 
have ever imagined!

Wildflowers of every color has presented themselves in 
the most cheery way

The fragrance is heavenly.

This year the wildflowers have taken over every area of
our acreage......even in parts of the thick mesquite woods

in the backyard..........there are wonderful thick patches
 in every kind and color of wildflower.
and flowers I have planted are also blooming in vibrant colors.
This Hollyhock survived winter with a blanket put over it......
and it is now in full bloom.

The Larkspur I planted in beds around the house have sprouted
in the beds.........and also traveled into the woods 
to bloom!


Thankfully, the mother cat Belle

and her 6 cute kittens will be traveling a 100 miles with us 
in the next few days to be placed in a "no kill" sanctuary for cats
which are adopted out!
I spent days researching and pleading with groups to take these sweet cats......only one place at this time was able to help me.  
  Belle will be spayed
and the kittens will receive their shots....then
they will be seen in the "adoption week"
segment coming up. Whoever adopts them pays a fee which 
will ensure that they will be spayed or neutered when the time comes.
I am so relieved , especially for the mother cat, Belle.
She deserves a good loving home as much as the kittens do.
But I have had to make a decision......in the future........ to get a trap and to trap any
cats that are dumped on me, and to take them to the animal shelter before they
start having kittens.  I have to keep my heart out of this.......sigh
I simply cannot afford the feed,  the cat litter, and the travel expenses  to take
care of them all......
I wish everyone would just simply research and find a rescue for their pets
than to heartlessly drop them out in a scary wild area hoping that 
I will take care of them.  
(sorry to start a rant)......but this kind of thing really upsets me the most.
And if you can...........donate whatever you can to organizations like these.
Any little thing from food to $$ helps in the care of the overwhelming amount
of dogs and cats that need home placement.




Friday, March 31, 2017

In my hand.......soft and warm......new farm babies have arrived



I was able to only take a couple of photos of these sweet 
little kittens
until Belle, the cat I have told you about in recent posts,
caught me......and did not approve.  
She had 8 in all!!  One died from her accidentally lying on it,
but still there are 7, that I need to find homes for.
And after she caught me taking photos.......she moved them all
and I have still not found them!  However,
she now has gained trust in me and allows me to pet
her.  I hope she will soon bring her kittens so that I can tame 
them for new homes.



Spring is upon us.....with my daffodils making the announcement first

The bluebonnets....Texas state flower.......fill the roadsides in their
brilliant blue and white waves

The woods here have turned green and the floor of the mesquite woods
is full of white miniature daisies

so full and white 

in little bouquets. 
then, there is the ox-eyed daisy......much larger with a pretty scent...
growing in bouquet clusters


on the other side of the woods.........in the prairie/meadow
it is a full carpet of yellow daisies that one can smell the fragrance from
yards away.  
These daisies are large headed and rugged enough to grow in almost any 
kind of ground

There are actually a lot of different yellow daisies here......
pretty dainty petally ones

long skinny and bright ones


the only red vibrant flower here is the Indian Blanket.
It is such a lovely flower

most abundant here is the Prairie Aster, growing in thick rows along the grounds

this little dainty purple flower has the prettiest leaves

and most would call this flower a weed.........
but for me.......it is a flower........
they all will always be a flower!
So tell me.........what is growing in your backyard!
I would love to hear!

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Sometimes, the best decisions.......hurt the most...........

as most of you who read my blog know.........this is Homer.  He was dropped on me over a year ago.
Since then, I feed and taken care of him........as best I can.............and he is such a sweet gentle cat........and a good mouser.
Homer does not get along with other cats.  So he cannot come inside of my home because my other two cats are house cats.  Along with Homer.......someone dropped a female cat on me as well.  Of course Homer went for her like Romeo.  I took Homer to the vet in January to get him neutered.
I had mentioned to the vet clinic staff that he had been dropped on me.  The next day when I went to pick Homer up, the receptionist told me that everyone there at the clinic just loved Homer and if I did not want to keep him, they would give him a good home.  
I appreciated her telling me this, but rejected the offer because I have fallen in love with Homer.
However...................... 


although it stopped his spraying and moaning after the female........it did not stop his aggression towards other cats.
A few days ago.........Taboo.........my inside tom cat......accidentally slipped out of the door and ran out to the back yard. In an instant Homer attacked him and had him pinned on the ground by his throat. I like to have never gotten them separated.   
Then again, the other day, Taboo slipped out when my husband opened the door. I was quick enough to grab up Taboo.........but Homer was so furious to see him........that he jumped onto Sophie's back........my dog........and attacked her.  I pulled him off. 
Not only is the aggression worrying me.........it is now rattlesnake time and I always worry about Homer getting bit.  He also has to sleep out with the chickens at night to stay safe.
So I made the hard decision and called my vet's office.  They remembered Homer quite well and told me to bring him in...........they would love to have him.
I felt blue the whole day after giving Homer away.  I let a day pass and just could not take the 
worry any longer and called the vets office to see if Homer was doing okay.  The receptionist told me that he has quite a winning personality.........grabbing at everyone as they walk by............playing.......loving to be petted and held.........and eating well.  He will now have a comfortable , safe home, at the vets office........being king of his new kingdom. 
I feel better about this decision.........but still slight regret lingers in my heart. 

The female I mentioned earlier............well.........I did not get Homer neutered quick enough.......
she is now going to have Homer's kittens.  She is scared and at first would not come to me. Now she comes and allows me to sit and watch her eat..........but I cannot touch her..........yet.
As much as I do not want her around.........I cant take her to a pound.  Several people have giving me numbers for places to call to take her..............but they all refer the pound........where she will be put down I am sure.
So I am now trying to tame her..........so that she can have her kittens here.......and I can make sure they are tame and try to find homes for all of them .
I have named this cat Belle...........but I still do not want to keep her and I cannot afford a spay bill. I am hoping I can find someone who will take her after her kittens are weaned.
And even though, I know that Homer will always have a safe , warm and happy home.........
my heart still hurts for him . He is dearly missed and probably will always be....... 
All I can say to anyone.............please don't drop your animals on someone else. It only makes more problems for them and for the animal you drop.
If  you keep your animals........please, please......spay or neuter!
by the way............does anyone want a kitten in about 10 weeks??


Thursday, February 9, 2017

Build muscle...........with cactus!!

if not muscle.........I promise your arms will be very sore if you use the
method I am using!
The house sits on 13 acres of wild , untouched prairie land.
Among the wild flowers, grasses, and crooked mesquite trees I love so well.........
is cactus.  Cactus is pretty.......in it's own way,
it blooms and attracts bees

and adds color and beauty to the prairie.

However, if left un-controlled, it is very invasive and takes
over and destroys natural prairie land. It harbors large numbers of rats and mice,
which attracts large rattlesnakes. 

And the cactus plant can grow 6 ft high and several feet around. 
We at first did not have a cactus problem , but when the wind blows, the cactus
seed scatters and takes roots. So for the past few months, I have been whacking down 
and picking up with a large fork this never ending cactus. 


Where does the muscle building come into??  After whacking the large paddles off,
they are full of water and very heavy. I use a heavy pickaxe to knock the cactus down,
which wears out my arms, 

then I load it all with the big pitch fork into a wheel barrel.....
"instant sore arms and one day muscles. "

The wheel barrel is very heavy to push and I carry all of this cactus
to the very edge of our property .......where the dirt from the cotton 
fields blow.  Cactus will not burn, and where ever it is left, it will resprout and 
take over that area. So I decided that since I have no other way to dispose of it.....
I would make a natural fence on our back property line.  It will be beautiful in bloom, will feed the bees, and hopefully will be easier to control .......no more cactus problems for me!

I am not destroying all of the cactus here on the grounds.........as I say, 
it does have it's place and it is pretty..........this is that large plant
I showed in the fourth and fifth  photo............after I whacked and pruned it .......a bit


It had a heart shaped paddle, which made me smile........
I hope this will stay and it will bloom.

The days here have been so pretty and fair........my daffodils have
awakened and are sprouting . I cant wait to see them bloom!
So tell me all..........what invasive plant do you have to deal 
with in your back yard? I would love to hear!