Monday, March 10, 2014


A few years ago, I snagged this chair from a garage sale for a steal.  It served me well, but time has now claimed the seat area and it is need of repair.  Since garage sale season is still a few months away here in the PNW, and funds are too tight to just go out a buy a new chair, I knew I needed to get my creative juices flowing.  Or, better yet, "put on my thinking cap," as my grandma use to say.  

Having limited tools at my disposal, I set out to, first and foremost, remove the old seat area.

This part was the easiest.  And seeing it was so easy, I convince myself that the following steps would also flow without a hitch.

I gathered a few simple tools and sat down to work.

The seat was made of many layers of thick cardboard.  However, in its prime, the simple cardboard had a very detailed design that was quite stunning....barring the red paint.  I imagine it was quite a lovely sight at some point it its life.

After removing the fragments and tacks, I brushed and cleaned the surface.

As I "shopped" the articles in my home, I came across a great metal sign that I was not using.  It was sturdy and had horses on it which made it all the more desirable to me.

Being nice and thin, I figured I could whip some holes in it and use some decorative tacks to adhere it to the chair.  What a simple fix this would be!  I smiled smugly at my cleverness.

Well....turns out a drill bit needs to be made for metal before one can drill a hole.  I broke the first bit in half.  But hey....that didn't stop me.  No sir, I just boldly went back to my case of bits (not knowing what bit was for what job) and picked another candidate.  The next bit drilled the hole a bit deeper into the thin metal, but ended up frayed on the tip. was at this point that I knew I was beat.  Refusing to be discouraged at my lack of funds to purchase the right bit, I once again, "put on my thinking cap."

Duct tape!  Of course....why didn't I think of that before!  I even had the right color!  My how smart we farmgirls can be when push comes to shove.  The old saying is true: Necessity is the mother of invention.

THERE!  All duct taped down and ready for my rump to once again find comfort in my old chair.

There you have it.  The final product.  And am I proud?  Yes, yeas ma'am I am.  And if I get any Redneck comments they will be terminated.....hahahahaha!

Saturday, January 11, 2014


Last night we were under a severe weather alert with possible gushing rain and strong winds.  Upon awakening this morning, I could see that we escaped the damaging weather by the skin on our teeth.  However, the lack of a severe storm did not hinder the animals in any way, as they took naturally to spending a wet and dreary day indoors.

Savannah never misses a moment to plop herself down on the sofa for a long winters nap.

Billie, not to be outdone by her sister, decides to snuggle in also.  At least she is on the dog bed.

Stella, our boarder for the weekend, decided the chair looked pretty inviting.  Monkey see, monkey do.

Even the rabbits are lazy.  And I don't doubt that if they were running around the house, the last chair in the living room would be occupied.  *Sigh*  Now where do I sit?

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Happy New Year Everyone! 

As the rest of the country struggles to get out from under the grips of a polar vortex, here in the Pacific Northwest, we are having much of the same ole same ole.....rain.  In December we had quite a lengthy bout of freezing weather, but nothing earth shattering.  And we were able to enjoy a frosty Christmas with just the right amount of nip in the air to make spirits bright. 

Coming upon the New Year, I had one pressing issue that I wanted to incorporate in my daily life come January.  I wanted and desperately needed to carve out some time with Mom for a daily devotion.  I am not one to make "resolutions" per say, however, I do believe in the constant renewing of our daily lives with new ways to reinvent ourselves as our lives change and grow.

I chose to begin our mornings with the devotional "Jesus Calling" by Sarah Young.  It is the most fabulous book out there for quick and life changing times with our Lord.  I read the daily devotion and corresponding scripture out loud to Mom while we enjoy our morning cup of coffee.  This sweet little moment sets the mood for our day and gives us strength to face the challenges that may be ahead.

Also, on New Years Day, my baby girl, Savannah, turned 12 years old.  She is quite worn out in this picture from being terrified all night from the fireworks and bombs that exploded at midnight and before.  Since then, I have secured some tranquilizers from the veterinarians to help her be calm should any more neighbors decide to be heavy handed with the explosives.

Be well, my friends, and may this New Year bring you peace and many blessings.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013


Ever since Zoey's surgery, the rabbits have come indoors to stay.  I knew they couldn't have run of the house with Savannah around, so I made them a play area to romp in.  I purchased a dog playpen that I configured into a rectangle and then place some essentials in it like a litter box, food, water, toys and an igloo to hide in.  Needless to say, they both love it. 
It looks small from this angle, but it's really quite roomy.  As you can see, they do poo in their potty box, but they also poo in the play area as well.  We are still working on the potty training.

Peek A Boo....I see you Zoey!  She is such a little pistol.  She growls like a dog when she is disgruntled with life.....LOL.  I think her spunk is what got her through such a lengthy difficult surgery.  I am happy to say she is now 100% healed!

Saturday, January 5, 2013


I know what you're thinking....everyone under the sun begins a new "diet" when the new year roles around, so this one won't be any different.  First of all, I am happy to say: this is NOT a diet.  Instead, it's a way of life....not only for better health, but for better financial help as well.  As time marches on, my budget is not growing.  So I decided to try this program I found through Dave Ramsey.  Yes, Dave.  The guy who tells you to sell your new car and cut up all your credit cards.  His suggestion for the budget weary who is sick and tired of eating the same old junk is eMeals.  And since Dave is not one to throw money around, I decided to sign up.  Yes, there is a small fee.....a very small fee.  One that fits even my screaming tight budget.  If you want to check it out for yourself, you can find it at:
Now on to my story about my first eMeal.  I have never eaten eggplant.  No, I did not just crawl out from under a rock.  I am the product of a mother who has never had any interest in trying new things and just sticks with the basics.  And I mean real basic.  Think turkey, rice, potatoes and a veggie.  That's about the size of it.  So now, as an adult myself, I have always struggled with menu planning and/or trying new foods.  All that is going to change this year and I'm dragging mom with me through this wonderful new adventure!  Tonight the meal called for Beef and Eggplant casserole.  I began with great trepidation, but soon learned that my fears were unfounded, as I whipped up quite the tasty meal.
I was quite proud of myself as I gathered the ingredients and began browning the meat.  The unfamiliar eggplant was still on the other kitchen counter, as I sat stirring at the stove, so I was doing OK at this point.  As I mixed the tomato sauce with the meat, things were starting to smell familiar.  I stalled as long as I could over the simple act of browning the beef until I gathered up the courage to tackle the infamous eggplant that was awaiting me on the other side of the kitchen.
I peeled the purple giants and sliced them lengthwise like the recipe called for.  Then I dipped them in egg and coated them with the panko crumbs.  So far, so good.  The baking took some time, so I prepped the rest of the meal during the extra time.  Soon, things were smelling really good in the kitchen and I became excited at this new adventure.
After the initial baking, I had to layer the eggplant and meat mixture and return it to the oven for a short heating and melting of the yummy cheese.  My pita halves were now brushed with olive oil, sprinkled with garlic powder and a were awaiting their time under the broiler.
When all was said and done, this is the plate that was dished up.  I eat off of a salad plate in order to keep my portions under some kind of control, but I couldn't help myself and had to partake of two pieces of the crispy pita bread.  The whole dinner turned out great and mom even had seconds!  That, in and of itself, is a miracle.  Mom is a very tiny English woman with nary an appetite.  So to get her to take seconds was a sign unto me that this adventure was worth taking.  Stay tuned for more great recipe adventures as I take my elderly mother on a culinary trip she won't forget!



Thursday, October 4, 2012


It was several weeks ago that I went out to put the flock to bed, only to find my golden sex link, Sienna, waddling with what looked like a long hot dog dangling from her vent.  Upon closer inspection, I realized that it was tissue from inside her vent that was hanging out!  I would say that a good four inches of protruding innards was now outside her body.  But to make it even more strange, the long mass of tissue was being pinched in the center by some kind of egg/fecal matter, which gave the long tissue the appearance of the number eight.

At this point I thought Sienna was on her way out of life on this earth.  Things looked bad, so bad that I asked my neighbor if he would do the "deed" of putting her down.  Since he was just sitting down to dinner with his family (happy eating Reece, hopefully your not eating hot dogs....ewwww) he said he would attend to the hen later.  In the meantime, I researched this problem online and found it to be called a "prolapse."  It was suggested that some honey be poured over it to shrink the tissue back up inside.  But I knew that this fleshy hanging tissue almost four inches long was not going to find its way back up inside the vent! 

I did, however, find a bucket and filled it with warm water.  I could at least clean the protruding tissue off and see what, if anything, I could do for her.  By the time I got back out to the coop, about ten minutes had passed.  By this time, much to my horror, the egg/fecal matter that was acting like a sphincter around the long hanging tissue, had totally clamped down causing the bottom part of the tissue to die.  I rushed to clean her off, as by now the tissue was dirty from being dragged around on the ground.  I gently immersed the prolapse in the water and began cleaning it off.  Then came the second horror.....the bottom clump of tissue, now deprived of blood, fell off!  And the rest of the upper tissue sucked like a vacuum back up inside the vent!  I stood there, a clump of dead tissue the size of a golf ball, resting in my hand, and expected to watch my hen bleed out right in front of me.

I waited and waited.  And waited.  Sienna ruffled her feathers back into place and hopped on up to the highest perch and settled down for the night.  I walked under her, looking for any sign of the horrid tissue that seconds before had been hanging out of her body, and saw nothing but a normal vent and fluffy feathers.  Scratching my head, I went back in the house, convinced that she would be dead by morning.  But by morning, there was Sienna, the first bird up for breakfast.  She ate, scratched around and went about her day as if nothing had happened the night before.  Well, surely when she tries to pass fecal matter or an egg, that missing tissue will have caused something to go a wry.  But nothing ever did.

It's been over two weeks since that horrifying night.  Sienna is showing no signs of illness or obstruction or bleeding.........NOTHING!  Oh, did I mention that I prayed that night to Jesus, to heal her?  I did.  Oh, and did I mention that the King of the universe heals chickens?  He does.  If He cares that much for a backyard much more does He care for us.  Be encouraged, my dear friends.....God has your back!  And nothing is too small for the Almighty to tend to.

Saturday, August 25, 2012


Yes we have done it again.  Meet the newest member of the family, Gabby.  This sweet little rabbit is only fourteen months old and has had numerous litters.  The gal who bred her didn't want her and her babies anymore and sent them packing to our local feed store.  We are very close to the people who own and work at the feed store and so they approached us to see if we had room to give Gabby a home and a new life with no more breeding.  Well, one look at this sweet face and my heart melted.  So home with us she came.

The initial introduction (with a fence between the two) with Zoey didn't go swimmingly to say the least.  Much growling and jumping around proceeded as the two sniffed each other for the first time.  The introduction is a lengthy process, but I am not convinced that these two girls will ever be BF F's.  As long as there is a fence between them, they are civil to each other.  I'm not in any hurry for these two to become roomies and in fact, I doubt they ever will.  With that in mind, we will be looking at creative ways to house them come winter.  And if they do end up getting alone, then great!  But I'm not holding my breath. 

This is the temporary housing situation.  Desperate times, called for desperate measures and we had to use Zoey's old hutch in a pinch for Gabby.  This will not be a permanent set up as I already have a hutch on layaway.  Isn't layaway great?  No interest and time to pay in installments.  Love it.  Especially for someone like me who is on a tight budget.  I figure by the time the cold winds start to blow, the hutch will be paid for and both rabbits will have a proper home.

Savannah has much to say about all this activity, but her language is not proper at this time.  I told her such language is not appropriate for a Christian lady to speak, but she just looked at me and said, "Mom, you've lost your mind."  She washes her paws to the whole ordeal and begs me to close the door on our Ark.  Silly know mama can't promise that!

Monday, August 6, 2012


It has been very warm here for the past few days and Zoey knows what to do to survive the heat wave.  She heads for cover under her hutch.  Her 6'X6' wire enclosure that houses her hutch, is covered in shade cloth that is suppose to lower the temperature 15-20 degrees cooler.  But it still gets warm to where I have to take special measures to keep her cool and safe.  First, she gets frozen bottles of water.  She loves to scratch at them and lick the outside of the bottles and when she has played with them enough, she pushes them into the right position and then lays her body in between them. 

It is on these hot days that I indulge her in some juicy fruit chunks.  Pears, peaches, grapes....not too much, but just enough to increase her fluid intake.  But I think one of the best ways Zoey likes to keep cool is in direct flow of the giant fan that I have perched outside her run.  She can't get to it to be hurt by it or chew a cord.  But she gets the direct benefit of its cool breeze.  If anyone thinks rabbits are simple animals with not much going on upstairs, I encourage them to discover the truth behind those doe eyes and large ears.  These animals are true smarty pants.

Saturday, July 28, 2012


It doesn't take long for a coop to show signs of wear and tear.  I have been having problems with the door sticking and not being able to open it all the way.  With my brother unable to assist me, I sat down to tackle this job myself.  I am not, mind you, a carpenter in any way, shape, or form.  However, I knew that I would need to remove the door and sand down the bottom to get it free flowing again.  So that is where I started.

With the door off (it is heavier than it looks) I was able to get a better look at the bottom.  Since I don't own a planer, I figured my sander would have to do the trick.  I sanded and sanded and sanded.  I fixed the stripped screw holes that held the hinges in place and figured I was good to go.  Putting the door back up single handed was more of a challenge than I had originally intended.  But I propped it on my foot and that made it a reasonable height to begin putting it back on the frame.

Pleased with my accomplishments I considered this a complete success!  However, the hens had a nervous breakdown the whole time I was working.  As you can see, they stayed far away from the project.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


What a glorious day it is here in the great Pacific Northwest!  The sun is shining, birds are singing, the hens are clucking up a beautiful chorus, and my garden is growing.  In fact, it is ready for some harvesting of the spring greens.

The hens would like to know what all the excitement is about.  Well girls, let me tell you.  First, these greens are as pure as the driven pesticides or chemicals of any sort.  They have grown of pure water and sunshine.  And the results are delicious!

See?  A masterpiece of garden goodness.  These greens will give any salad a little bite of sharpness.  Yummmm.....

However, there will always be some critics that don't agree.  Savannah is clearly not impressed with the show of the fruits of my labor.  Now if this was a basket of beef we might see a different reaction.

Zoey, on the other hand, has given her paw of approval.  I know she is happy when one ear is up and the other is down.  In fact, she believes that this whole basket of succulent greens are for her and her alone.

This is her "Go away" face.  She is done with me and would like me to exit her enclosure.  Leaving the basket of greens with her, of course.  That is a hard face to say no to, but I want some of those greens too!  Have a happy first day of summer everyone!