Saturday, April 6, 2013

Landscaping, book review and "before and after"

 It was a gorgeous day yesterday with sunshine, blue skies and temps in the 70's.  I was trying to take a picture of a cardinal singing his little heart out but when I got the camera focused  he was gone!  A few minutes later there were several female cardinals that showed up and they were wondering where he went too! 
Here's a little part of my big landscaping project.........
 Those are lilies coming up.  I just laid cardboard and newspaper around them and I had a couple bags of mulch  leftover from last year so I do a little at a time else the paper blows away.
Here is my rosemary and oregano that doesn't die out in the Winter and do I love that!  I've got it in an old metal wash tub with a Southern exposure which I think really helps.  The sun heats that metal up and keeps the roots and soil warm in the Winter.  I used to have the same luck when I planted next to the dryer vent!
I bought this planter full of bulbs at Wal-Mart for $10.00 and it had some purple crocus and  another  purple flower that has since died out...maybe it was grape hyacinth and of course the daffodils.  Little did I know there were tulips too!  What a nice surprise when they opened up!  That was a great deal as I got 5 different types of bulbs and 5 of each type that I can replant.  I couldn't have bought the bulbs that cheap!
The regular hyacinths are so heavy with bloom they're falling over.  I had them in the house for a bit and my whole family room smelled like them.
Below is the book I just finished.  It was published in 1949, the year I was born and is a collection of essays that were published in a magazine or newspaper back then.  It's divided by the seasons and fascinated me because it was when I was alive!  Although some of the essays were about his childhood the photos were current and that's what blew me away!  Some of his memories jogged some of my own.  It wasn't a novel or a thriller but along with the photos I found it very enjoyable.  I learned about how they made dried apples and  apple pies from them and he explained "shovel sledding" like in the movie "It's a Wonderful Life" and many other interesting tidbits from the past.  I love farm life especially back then before pesticides and insecticides and corporate farming.  Those really were "the good old days"!  
This picture reminds me of where I grew up although I think the author was from the East as they talked of sugar maple season.
and this one.........I  miss the trees how they used to be everywhere and along the fence they get rid of all the trees so as not to waste one bit of land for planting.  I think they're greedier now or they just have to compete too hard to make a dollar.

Below really reminds me of how I spent my Summers.  Perish the thought that video games would have been around back then....I would've missed out on so much! 
See the kerosene lamp?  Many rural areas didn't have electricity even then.....yes, I'm old! LOL!  It took many years for the people living in small towns and rural areas to catch up to the big cities.  I can remember in high school, in the late 1960's that my Aunt and Uncle who I spent my Summers with, were just then getting rotary dial phones.  They had party lines and operators and you had to crank the handle to get the operator to come on and place your call for you.  The operators were much more than operators though.  They could confirm weather warnings, deny or substantiate rumors and even help you find out where your child was.  Party lines were not very private but it sure kept people connected whether they wanted to be or not~

The picture below reminds me of my Uncle's meat market except instead of sitting out front the farmers would be in the back where  my Uncle sat up on a high stool with a big counter in front of him making his bologna.  He ground his own meat and added the spices and smoked it himself in a smoker out back.  I could watch him stuff it for hours and in those days I think it was real "gut" they used for the casing.  Meanwhile, the farmers would sit around the cast iron wood stove back there and talk farming and I would hang on their every word!    
Okay, enough walking down memory lane....I have a before and after...a couple, as a matter of fact.  I ordered a sample packet of milk paint as I've been wanting to try it and here's the results.........



 I used milk paint from Miss Mustard Seed and I have not waxed it yet so it looks pretty chalky.  She also said you didn't have to use a blender to mix it but I definitely will next time!  The little basket was just one of those cheap baskets you see at garage sales but now it looks like a miniature clothes basket and I'm thinking it would look cute with some tiny little clothes folded up in it and sitting on a shelf in my laundry room.  The shelf needs a second coat but you get the idea.  Milk paint is a powder you dissolve in warm water and it only lasts a few days so you don't want to mix more than you'll use.  Since I'm just experimenting and had sample packets I chose little items.  Milk paint was used on many items, inside and out, "back in the day".  This color is Luckett's Green.  I did the clothespin so I can write the name of the color on own version of a paint chip! LOL!  I didn't have enough paint for the picture frame as you always need 2 coats of milk paint.  Stay tuned for the next color experiment and have a great evening!


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  3. That book looks quite interesting. I enjoyed walking down memory lane with you. And that milk paint sounds interesting, too. You certainly are a busy bee. Best wishes, Tammy


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