Life on a little urban homestead in the making, with ideas for self-sufficiency, Permaculture, DIYing, organic gardening, food preservation, Chicken keeping, cookery, crafts, thrifting and more...

Jun 30, 2017

A Bridge Over Troubled Water, Indeed

A Bridge Over Troubled Water, Indeed-
Listen to this entire song, by Sohyang, a South Korean Singer. Crank up the volume, watch on a larger screen. It starts off soft but really changes. Gorgeous orchestration, arrangement, backdrops and choir. With flawless English and multiple octave range, it made the hair stand on the back of my neck. This was from a classic song contest, but she was already a star when she sang it. No wonder! And she  won :)

Jun 26, 2017

Tour Of Our Flowers, Flea Market & Road Trip, Bumper Service Berry Crop

Tour Of Our Flowers-
It was hot this weekend! 95+ and today a storm blew in, lightning, a little rain and thunder. Things are starting to bloom and the flowers are really taking off! Sometimes I forget to take photos of the flowers in the yards, front and back. All the flower beds were empty when we bought the house. Over the years we've added lots of different pollinators and various perennials. Here's snapshot of the flowers. More will bloom in the next month, but it gives you an idea! In the shot above, there were three small Spireas in pots along the driveway when we bought the house. We ditched the pots and planted them. Now they're huge!

Cat mint, sorry for the blur

Yarrow, Lavender and Asters (not blooming yet)

Another Cat mint where we cut down the Nectarine tree, filing in nicely!

Lamb's Ear, Oat Grass, and Shasta Daisies will bloom soon

Love the roses!!! Pretty and amazing smell

Different view of front flower bed

Back deck, flowers still settling in

My geranium that survive the winter in the garage!

Mini roses for Rosie, the first hen I lost

Backyard volunteer sunflowers and lovely lavender

Getting ready to harvest some to bring indoors!

Princess Poesy keeping cool in 95 degrees in the raised bed garden

Idaho City Flea Market

Flea Market & Road Trip-
Dave and I took a short trip to Idaho City Saturday for lunch and a drive. Going into town I told to PULL OVER!!!! A flea market! Here's some of the fun things we saw... 

I spy farmy stuff!

More stuff

Vintage fun

Too much beige for me

Cast iron galore!

I wanted that red and white enamel cup set and kettle! Don't know where I'd put them, so I passed. I have gotten to the point of not wanting stuff to buy just to buy. I want to retire some day!

Lots of hand made scrubbers

Oil lamps

Old purple glass, reminds me of my Grandma's

More glass

Fun display

Cute idea welding tools to mailboxes!

While I didn't buy anything it was fun to look!

Bumper Service Berry Crop-
With our wetter Spring we've had a bumper crop of berries! That's about 1 Qr., which is more than we've ever had! I see a small cobbler in our future :) They're a little smaller than blueberries and have a unique flavor. Not juicy, but good. Native Americans ate them and dried them. Yummy! Our Choke Cherry is coming along as well. Looking forward to making jelly. The flavor is amazing!!!

Jun 19, 2017

Painting Projects Finished!

All done!

Painting Projects Finished! 
Finally they're done!!! I finished the chicken garden (thrifted years ago) sign yesterday. Dave and I hung it up tonight-

We used thin copper wire to hang it, and I think it looks great! The wire will age nicely-

Before picture

I painted with craft paint I have and added raffia. I used a similar green spray paint of the hanger piece, sanded and did 2 coats of paint-

I was able to see the outline of the original letters on it, so I used small brush to re-do. I free-handed the leaves. I used a stamp on the other side of the wood-

Zero cost re-hab!!!

Next I did my country magazine rack for Grand babies books, thrifted $4.00-



Blue paint I had on hand, did 2 coats


After other side

While my sponged stencils aren't perfect I'm happy! I just used what I had on hand. All in all time well spent...

Jun 16, 2017

Vacation Day Projects

Vacation Day Projects-
We had a crazy week in Boise, with almost 2" of rain in two days!!! It's been warming up gradually since then. Going into the 70's now, with 90's forecast for next week. I wound up being offered a "vacation" day today, due to lower work load. Since I had tons of little projects I jumped at the chance. Sometimes it seems like all those little things can add up being very time-consuming. So today was project day! I did sleep in, so I can't complain too much. And got lunch out at Sonic, love their Chicago dogs!

On the list of things to do today- 
Called my FSA (health savings account) card company for 30 minutes. I had to clarify why I keep getting emails over and over for the sme claim. Fixed :)

I finally found some small river-stone type rocks buried in my craft cart to finish off my lucky bamboo. I had moved it to a bigger pot-  

I washed our living room chair slip covers, pretty dirty around the edges. All clean and purty now-

Re-painted my $4.00 thrifted magazine rack for the Grand kid's books. It was a free re-do, I just used spray paint I already had. I thought about doing chalk paint on the ends (still may do) but I wanted a durable paint finish.

Before, a little scratched and faded

Little country scene

1st coat, 2nd coat will do tomorrow

Before picture, the other side was worse

I finally repainted my fave thrifted garden chicken sign. It took a real beating for 10 years outside, then we had really heavy snow this winter. It's been the cursed chicken trying to paint it! Every time I was ready to paint it rained! I won't match things exactly, but that's OK. It was another no-cost rehab, just used the paints I had on hand. I will give it a coat of polyurethane at the end for extra weather durability. I will use a foam stamp for the edging. I can't free hand that kind of thing! I used Dave's new nail gun to attach the one wing and strengthen the other. Maybe it will go for another 10 years! Rain was approaching this afternoon again, so fingers were crossed. A light breeze helped the drying time. I still need to finish painting tomorrow, just too humid today. I thought I'd gt all the painting done today, but Mother Nature didn't cooperate. Ah well!

Sign after sanding-

Cedar under there

I hung it on our bird feeder so I could paint all sides at once- 

First coat

I will do another coat tomorrow, since it's so humid, and sprinkling. I will re-do the welcome letter and add some edging. I found another fun chicken (spoon rest) yesterday-

$4.00 at Big Lots

I posted a few things on Craigslist for sale today. We've sold some biking gear in the last 2 weeks, and extra $60.00 for us! 

I'll be ironing summer work clothes tonight, boring but it takes time too.

I'll be taking down the Spring decor tomorrow and putting up some summery stuff! I can end the big projects with something easy and FUN! I'll post photos of the completed painted things this weekend.

Jun 13, 2017

Spicy Black Beans Cakes!!!

Spicy Black Beans Cakes-
I always loved this recipe from Katie Brown Entertains book. I got it dirt cheap at Ross discount store years ago when my kids were young. Published in 2000, it's a winner! I have always loved her shows, and she's still on PBS. She has a great website as well. Being too tired to type the recipe out, here's the recipes in two photos. The Tabasco sauce really makes it!

Serve with chips and veggies and it's a meal. Pretty in expensive and you can modify as needed. No meat required. The mixture keeps well in the fridge, and I usually make a double batch for several meals. Enjoy!!! 

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