Wednesday, January 14, 2015

What a fence! ~ Break time!

Here's what you can do with all your old pots and pans.  Just decorate a fence with them!

These were quick drive-by shots and I'm going to have to make a point of going by this farm again when the sun isn't in my face and get better ones.  Besides, I just want to see this again! 

I would love to be able to walk up to this and look it over closely and see just what was used besides pots and pans to make this one of a kind fence.  

This family is really into recycling because they also have a cobalt blue wine bottle garden in the yard in front of the house.   

Linking to Theresa's Good Fences

I'm going to be taking a blog break.  Everything is fine here.  We're all fine.  I just need to concentrate on The Project and many little projects around this house for awhile.  You know I will have to drop in and visit from time to time, but I won't be posting or commenting.  Thanks to all my blog friends for sticking with me even when I can't be online as much as I'd like.  I'll be back when I can.  Stay well and stay warm! 

Happy Thursday to you!
xo Cheryl   

Monday, January 12, 2015

A Quilt Barn

I took the photos of the quilt barn back in October.  Not sure what the quilt is called and I'm afraid I don't remember exactly where I saw the barn except it was in my area in mid-Missouri. 

Joining Amy at The Barn Collective.

Happy Monday to you!
xo Cheryl

Friday, January 9, 2015

Friday Randoms

The birds are keeping me busy filling feeders this cold, cold winter.  I have a dozen or more cardinals around jockeying for a space at the feeder I fill with sunflower seeds.  The woodpeckers are enjoying their feeders and the goldfinches and other little birds feast on the finch seed.   

Yesterday would have been Elvis Presley's 80th birthday.  It was a huge shock when I heard the news of his passing in August of 1977.  My mother had just died a month before.  I had a wee little huge crush on him back in the day and loved playing his music.  My mother didn't share my enthusiasm for his music, but I can remember watching him in concert on TV with her one night and noticed she was tapping her feet, too.  He had so many great songs that I would be hard pressed to name a favorite, but Can't Help Falling in Love and Suspicious Minds are two at the top of the list.  Do you have a favorite Elvis song?

I've been watching a few movies lately on the new TV.  I've seen them before, but it had been awhile...The Fugitive and Air Force One with Harrison Ford were the latest I watched.  Is it just me, or is the music on some shows extremely loud?  Both BG and I complained that we couldn't really hear what the actors were saying half the time.

Do you think the weather affects your pets behavior even if they are inside?  The kitties were all on a tear yesterday while it was so windy outside.  They usually are better behaved, but I could have cheerfully given them all away yesterday.

BG and I have a new favorite place to eat and that's where we'll be headed in a few minutes.  We both always seem to order the same thing each time and why not?  The food is delicious.  So, dinner is calling and I will bid you adieu and wish you a very pleasant evening.  Have a good weekend, too!   

Even tho this post is late I'm linking with Tanya's Willy Nilly Friday 5

Happy Friday to you! 
xo Cheryl

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Chasing Away The Winter Blues

I like these cold, gray winter days. Days like these 
let you savor a bad mood. 
 ~Bill Watterson

This quote made me smile.  The weather does play a large part in how we feel on certain days.

I can't say that I like winter.  The often sunless, cold days don't exactly put me in a cheerful frame of mind. 
Occasionally, a bad mood will sneak in trying to rob me of joy and I will entertain this thief for a short while until I'm tired of him and call on the good mood police to send him packing.

So how do I do that?  I'll fix myself a cup of cappuccino or tea and get out a good book.  Or call a friend.  Or watch the beautiful red Cardinals at the bird feeder.  If I haven't been out in a while, I'll hop in the car and go flea marketing or meander down some country roads in search of a photo op, weather permitting.

  I see you!  Got an umbrella?

I don't try to do much more than the necessary chores on these dark days.  Fixing a pot of yummy soup is not a chore.  Cleaning out drawers and closets is, so I wait for brighter days to do those things.

What do you do to brighten winter's dark days?  Or do you love winter...even the gloomiest of days?

Happy Tuesday to you!
xo Cheryl 

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

A Look At 2014

This year has gone by so fast it almost makes my head
spin!  All in all, it was a very good year, but there were some
sad times as well.  

What I've learned is to enjoy the sweet,
simple things in life and if my family is healthy and I'm
healthy, then I have much for which to be thankful. 

It is impossible to put a year in a few photos, 
but I've put together a few collages of some of my
favorite photos taken during the year.  
First up...more Christmas! 

We had a very nice Christmas.  We missed my
aunt and uncle who usually spent Christmas Day with us.
They both passed away in September, as most of my 
readers know.  

Our son came home last Tuesday night and was here until
Friday afternoon when he had to return to KC to see his new lady. 

Daughter and I were the champions this time at card games
so that was fun!  We are usually on the losing end.  lol!

We had lots of food and laughs.  BG and I don't normally
exchange gifts, but my son talked us into a new TV for the living room so 
he took his dad to the city where they found just the right 
one for us.  Now I need a new table for it and will have to do
some rearranging in the living room...later.  I plan
to read a few books and just relax for a while. 

I picked out a few favorite photos of my furred and 
feathered friends that I see out my kitchen window.  The
exception being the white-tailed squirrel that I saw one
day while driving down the street and the Bald Eagle that
I spotted not far from our town.  The deer was captured using my
zoom while he was getting a drink at our pond.

A few of my favorite sunsets of 2014. 

January saw the work begin on the foundation of our house.  I'm happy to report that nearly a year later, our basement has stayed dry.  Yay!

We had some snow, but all in all it was a pretty good winter.

I did spend part of the winter dreaming of flower gardens!

We planted strawberries in our new raised bed that BG built and hope for a good crop next June.  When the weather was nice, a lot of time was spent outside working with my flowers or trying to get a shot of the birds and sometimes even the moon.  I enjoy our patio which is filled with flower pots.  We do lots of grilling in warmer weather, too.

We put a bid in on a house that came on the market and the next thing you know...we are the proud owners of another house with a red barn included!  I always wanted a red barn.  The house will be rented to our daughter as soon as we get the bathroom remodeled and a few other things that need to be done.

We didn't get to take our trip out west in September as we were in the middle of house negotiations and also because of my aunt and uncle.  We did squeeze in a few trips to Branson during the year.  Also we went to St. Louis one weekend and made other short jaunts.  One of my favorite day trips is to the Amish country where I bought most of our Christmas candy last week.  I ended up putting a lot of it in the freezer!

The last photo of the grandfather clock is a reminder to me of a new goal (I don't like to make resolutions) that I'm setting for myself in the new year.  And that is to get to bed earlier and wake up before 8 am.  For one reason, so I can see more sunrises and capture the beauty of the early morning hours.  We'll see how that goes.  You know what they say about old dogs and new tricks!

My trees will stay up a few more days.  I'm really enjoying the new slim tree in the dining area that is decorated with cookie cutters.  I can see both trees from where I'm sitting in the recliner and they look so pretty at night.  

I hope each of you had a wonderful holiday and my wish for you is that you have a happy, healthy New Year filled with many blessings!


Monday, December 22, 2014

Merry Christmas!

My daughter and I went shopping Saturday.  She needed to finish her Christmas shopping and we both wanted to go to Clark, MO to the Amish community where we were looking for some Christmas candy and other goodies.  

We passed by a farm that had 7 corn shocks lined up by the fence.  I'm not sure why there were just the 7 or why they were by the fence.  I thought it made an interesting photo.  You can see that the day was overcast and a bit foggy.  

We started very early in hopes of getting to the bakeries before they were sold out.  The divinity I wanted was already snapped up, but we found plenty of other yummy candy.  I bought some fudge, ting-a-lings, chocolate covered peanuts, coated oreos, several fried pies (those are to die for!), a plate of assorted goodies, 2 loaves of bread, a pecan pie and a cherry pie.  Who counts calories at Christmas?  I also bought a bag of oranges and some eggs at the Amish store.   I put the pies and one loaf of bread in the freezer until Tuesday or Wednesday.

After we left the Amish country, we headed to the city (Columbia).  We stopped in at our favorite diner for lunch and an old-fashioned ice cream soda.  Yum, yum.  No, we hadn't touched the candy or fried pies yet, although we were tempted!  They made it home intact.  lol!

After a full day of shopping, in which we also had stopped in at the Candy Factory for some divinity, we decided to drive around and see a few Christmas light displays.  One we had heard about was a house called the Candy Cane Crib.  It is fantastic!  

This home which is beautifully decorated is called the Candy Cane Crib.  Folks are invited to get out of their cars and take photos.   My little camera doesn't quite do justice to the beautiful scene, but you get the idea.

As heaven and nature sings in celebration of the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ, may this Christmas bring you much love and happiness and fill your hearts with joy and peace. 

Merry Christmas from my home to yours!!


Friday, December 19, 2014

Here Comes Christmas!

Ready or not...Christmas is now less than a week away!  

It is now or never today as I finish up the wrapping and cards.   I've had lots of help with these 2 projects as my herd of kitties all have a need to be in the middle of whatever project I'm working on.  Tomorrow I have a little day trip in mind that I'll share in my next post.  I'm trying to get as much finished today as I can.  The first part of next week will be spent cleaning the house and cooking and just enjoying the season! 

It's a challenge to get some jobs done with too many sweet furkids around.  When my back is turned, I might find Callie on top of the refrigerator watching the rest of the herd kitties chasing each other around or playing with a scrap of ribbon on the floor.  She is usually a pretty good girl, as are the rest of the kitties....when they are sleeping! 

Did you know that a wadded up ball of aluminum foil makes an excellent toy for kitties to play with?   I needed something quick to keep the kitten occupied yesterday and he loved it.   If I'm working at the kitchen table, he will leap upon to my lap and then on the table!  He wants to be close by, so I just let him nap.  At least he wasn't getting into trouble!

I bought a new slim 6 foot tree             
to put in the kitchen and retired the trio of aspen trees with the colored lights.  I will use them somewhere else another year.  It was time for something new in the dining area.  It looks good, but the kitten loves trying to bat the ornaments out of it.  I see lots of aluminum foil balls in his future.  lol!


See the help I have today?  I have the paper out to
finish wrapping and the youngest furkid goes from the
table to the tree in search of some fun and games.
My Christmas joy is being tested as I write this because
I just took this photo a few minutes ago!  lol!  

I was looking through some old photos and saw Stormy when she was a kitten.  That was 5 years ago!  How can that be?  And it really boggled my mind when I realized it was 15 years ago yesterday that my son graduated from college.

Time is marching on, but if I could just slow it down a little the last week before Christmas, I would!! 

I made my favorite sugar cookies yesterday.  They are
       so good that they don't need icing, only a sprinkle or two of
colored sugar crystals, and best of all, they are quick and easy!  
I got this recipe one year from the hostess of a Christmas
tour I went to.  I think she used almond flavoring in her cookies
but I prefer vanilla.

 Home Tour Sugar Cookies

1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 1/4 cups flour
1 egg
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
Mix the butter and sugar together, then add the egg and vanilla.
  Stir in the flour, baking soda and salt.  
Roll into 1 inch balls and press down with a fork
or the bottom of a glass dipped in sugar.
Sprinkle with colored sugar.
Bake on a lightly greased cookie sheet
 in a 350 degree oven for 8 to 10 minutes.

I'm going to have one or two along with my cappuccino 
because I love them to keep my energy levels up 
while I'm wrapping those presents!  I hope it goes
better than my posting did.  Blogger just doesn't want to
cooperate photos and writing just won't 
go where I want them.

And that is what's happening at my house!
Hope you are having fun, too, getting ready for
Christmas.  I'll be back sometime next week.

PS  Send sunshine our way, we haven't seen much

of it the last couple of weeks.

Happy Friday to you!
xo Cheryl

Friday, December 12, 2014

Are You Ready?

Tree decorated......check

Gifts bought.........check

Gifts wrapped.......nope

Cards bought........check

Cards sent.............nope

Let's see.  What else needs to be done before Christmas?  We only have one full week left, you know.  Are you ready?  Do you get stressed out or do you just do what you can and forget the rest?  I tend to fall into the latter category.  Christmas should be a joyful time, not stressful.  The most important things always get done.   

I have always loved an old-fashioned Christmas.  The tree is filled with ornaments (and sometimes a kitty) we've collected over the years and have meaning to us.  The ornament with the cardinal in the first photo was one that belonged to my sweet grandmother and I think of her each year it is hung on the tree and how she, even tho she lived alone for many years, always decorated a small, tabletop tree and put out her gumdrop tree and Nativity scene each Christmas.  I am so happy to still have an ornament that belonged to her!   


We love to take a drive around the neighboring towns and look at the decorated yards and houses each Christmas.  When our children were little, that is what we did while Santa always came by the house when we were gone.  Mom, of course, always forgot something and had to go back into the house before we headed out for our drive to put out Santa's gifts.   

While shopping the other day, I spotted a kiosk in the mall that had calendars by the dozens and stopped by to ask if they might have a Susan Branch calendar.  They did and I happily took one home with me.   Do you buy yourself something while shopping for others?   I also spotted this little tree while shopping that looked pretty indestructible for the table.  You know, when Mom is away the kitties will play!  The tree is metal and I put flameless tealights in the candle holders.

I met my daughter after she got off work last night for a little shopping and we stopped for supper at the Golden Corral.  We hadn't eaten there in a while and, believe me, I didn't need to eat so much!   But it was good and what fun to see the Cotton Candy!  It was even more fun to eat it.  ;-)  Daughter found herself a new coat and I was pretty good and only bought a set of Pfaltzgraff Christmas dishes at the resale shop that was marked way down.  I think I'll give them to her for her new home, even though it won't be ready to move into by Christmas.  Work there has slowed down a bit...we've decided to take a long Christmas break.  

Our son just called to say he was back in KC from a few days business trip to sunny California.  I wish he could have brought some sunshine back with him!  We haven't seen the sun but once in many, many days.  While others may be wishing for snow for Christmas, I'm wanting sunshine! 

Happy Friday to you!
xo Cheryl

Monday, December 8, 2014

Stormy At Breakfast

"Oh, oh.  Did I just hear Get Off The Table?"

"Maybe if I pretend I'm sleeping, I won't have to move."   

"I see she's getting out the place mats and using the Christmas mugs for the cappuccino.  This must mean a photo shoot at breakfast.  Guess I better scram before I get banished 
to the basement...again."

 "Do you think she'll mind if I take a quick peek before I go?  That pumpkin roll is really good.  I got to have a little taste yesterday.  But what I'd really like is some of that whipped topping on the cappuccino.  Yummy for my tummy."

Happy Monday to you!
xo Cheryl 
(and Stormy who
got to have a wee bit of whipped 
topping at breakfast.  Spoiled brat.)

Friday, December 5, 2014

Here's What's Happening....

Such an original blog title, isn't it?  I have to say that coming up with a clever title these days is just taxing my poor brain too much.  I used to love to name things or come up with titles.  Not so much lately.  Can't say why that is....after all I'm supposed to be retired and just kicking back with my books and bonbons and blogging.  Right.  Life here at Pond Hollow just recently got a bit busier...not that it wasn't already.  
And why is that?  
Because he's baaack!!!  

The kitten we had found a home for was brought back to us.
It seems that the couple that had him said that he was too
afraid of their dog and hid all the time.  

We each other...but to tell 
the truth, I don't see little Tuffy afraid of a dog 
or anything else.  I do believe he would go bear hunting 
with a the saying goes.  He will run up to 
our bigger cats and just jump
on their backs and chase them all over the house.  

He's also fascinated with the Christmas tree and it is a chore to
keep him out of it.  He likes to rearrange the tree skirt as well 
as batting the ornaments off.  Have I also mentioned how 
sharp his little claws and teeth are?  I know this because I 
often used to go barefoot and he loves to attack my toes 
when I'm least expecting it. 

 We hope to find a new forever home for Tuffy.   Soon.  Whoever gets him will need a lot of patience.  He's a sweet little boy and cute as a button, but very rambunctious!  When he runs out of steam, he will settle down by me if I'm in the recliner and snuggle up under my arm and sleep.   He gets locked in the bathroom where he can't get into too much trouble while I'm out of the house.  

So what else is happening?  So far this week, I've shopped for and found a razor edged scraper that will hopefully get the tightly stuck carpet backing off the floor in the spare room at The Project.  That stuff is stuck on like glue and is a real pain.  I also found some new window locks.  Remembered to get bulbs for our light fixture that hangs over our table.  Looked for something new to put atop our Christmas tree.  I got my hair cut which was badly needed.  The laundry is piling up but it will have to wait another day or so.  I'll be heading out to do a bit more shopping today.  This time for some Christmas gifts to wrap and put under the tree to hold the tree skirt in place.  lol!   The week is flying by as always and I hope you have had a good one.  I'll be by to visit as soon as I can!
Happy Friday to you!
xo Cheryl