Inventory and Improvements

As winter hums along, I find myself daydreaming about the things I’d like to do outside in my sunny back yard. I’m going thru ideas at rapid fire, and it’s hard to decide what will work out best.

I have tentatively decided on making a raised flower bed with cinder blocks, and then in the holes of the cinder blocks I’ll plant herbs. Cinder blocks will last a lot longer than wood, and the holes on top give me the extra growing room. I’d like to do two flower beds, but I’m afraid things will start getting a little too pricey. I keep looking at Pinterest for inspiration.

Like my mother before me, and her father before her. I really enjoy plants! I don’t know that much about them yet. I’m in the process of learning, but I’m interested in growing herbs (culinary and medicinal), vegetables, flowers, and maybe someday fruits. I got all my seeds out of the fridge, and made an inventory of all the seeds I do have. I have joined a couple of seed swapping groups on Facebook, and I’m hoping to get some new things to try.

The straw bale gardens will make a repeat appearance this year. If we can afford it I’m going to do two rows of 5 bales each with trellises. Either way, we’re going to build a support structure with wood for when the bales try to topple over from internal decomposition. I’m on a couple straw bale gardening groups on Facebook, and I’m learning a lot.

I will have a wooden plant stand in my craft room. It has three levels, and MrB bought a light fixture to clip onto the side of it so I can have my grow light going. I’m hoping to have houseplants mostly on it. MrB got me this Purple Passion plant yesterday.

Purple Passion

He bought me a couple ceramic pots that I can pot some of the plants that are starting to outgrow their current pots.


My craft room continues to be a happy place for me. It still needs a lot of decluttering, but I think it’s starting to come together. I’ve been spending a good bit of time in there cuddled up under an afghan that my mom just made me a few weeks ago.

I had wanted something over the doorway to look at, and feel inspired by. One day I was sitting here, and I thought of a quote that I’d heard, “Bloom where you are planted”. I searched on Etsy, and found the perfect vinyl decal. It arrived yesterday, and MrB put it up for me. I was so pleased with how it turned out.Bloom

The back wall is painted with as an accent wall. It is sort of a strange reddish-orange color. I’m not that fond of it, but I’ll keep it. That back wall will be where many family photos are displayed. I’m taking it one step at a time though, and just keeping all my ideas on a Pinterest board. It is turning into a sanctuary slowly, but surely.

 

Is It Spring Yet

Snow Jan 22
As seen off my back deck

By the looks of things, spring won’t be here for a little while. I like looking at snow, love watching it come down and pretending you’re inside a snow globe. However, I do not like the cold. I usually stay huddled under an electric throw.

The winter does give us time to plan to-do projects for the spring. I want to make a flower bed close to the back fence. I keep going over it in my min to decide how I want it done. A lady that works with MrB gave him some seeds for “Purple Angel Trumpet” flowers. Then I found a guy on Facebook who is willing to send some flower seeds from his garden for free. All you do is send 3 stamps and a SASE. I’m so excited for spring.

My vegetable garden is going to be more organized this year. Last year I had a foot injury and then surgery that prevented me from getting down to our back yard. I tried to supervise what MrB was doing. We did the garden using 4 straw bale (not hay bales) which are usually about $5-6 a piece. I’m going to go for 5 bales this year, have really good trellising, organic pest control, and the main thing we’re going to do is stabilize the straw bales with wood to prevent them from collapsing.

My goal is to try to do all organic gardening, but boy is that ever expensive, but we are a family of 2, and I think that it won’t cost as much as it would for a lot of people.

Right now I have my seeds from last year in a mason jar in the back of the refrigerator. I’m very much a novice gardener, but I’m going to keep at it. My dad told me that I was like my grandfather, because when I got a seed catalog in the mail, my eyes began to twinkle.

For now I’ll keep dreaming and learning about gardening and herbal medicine.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Procedures and Snow

Brief history on some medical stuff that I’ve been dealing with. I’ve had migraines for well over a year now without any relief from medications. I started going to Vanderbilt University, and they began giving me Botox injections. On January 6 I had my second session. They tell you not to massage for 7 days, so at day 10 I was having a very stiff neck. I put a TENS unit on my neck to try to help. Almost immediately after doing that I started having trouble swallowing. Liquids would go down ok, but food felt like it was stick at the bottom of my throat, and the top of my chest. I paid my primary care doctor a visit after talking to Vandy over the weekend. They had recommended a barium swallow.

My dad is visiting, so he went with me to my appointment. I had the barium swallow first. Basically you just drink this chalky liquid and they take some x-rays  while your swallowing. After that I had an ultrasound done of my thyroid and the surround tissues. The radiologist said that my barium swallow looked totally normal.

I’ll be waiting a couple of days to hear results of the ultrasound. I honestly think my use of the TENS moved the botox causing the swallowing trouble. If that is the trouble then I should get better in 4-6 weeks

 


The afternoon started out with rain, and before we knew it the flurries started flying. It stopped snowing a little early. We got a light dusting, but it was beautiful to watch thru the windows.

We have a bird feeder that my dad built for us several years ago. It holds a suet cake on each end, and then a container filled in the center. The bird feeder is shaped like a house. I really enjoy watching the birds come to my feeder. MrB refilled the feeder this afternoon, and left a little trail of food along the railing of our deck. Those birds went wild.

I don’t know how the roads will be in the morning, but MrB is supposed to go in at 10 so maybe he’ll be able to go.

 

 

Crafting and Reviewing

MrB helped me with some of the organization of my yarn. I have this shelving unit that MrB got me. It used to be used to store wallpaper samples, but now the gigantic piece has its place in my craft room. We went thru some of the junk I’d been storing on it, and MrB put all of my yarn that wasn’t in the closet in the shoe rack into the shelves of the monstrosity of a shelving unit. It still needs some work, but I like how it looks so far.

Yarn yarn

I acquired most of this stash over the span of several years. Once, MrB and I went to an estate sale, and I bought so much yarn it’s crazy. Some of the colors were obviously from the ’70s and ’80s, but that’s ok.

I have received two very generous donations of yarn from people who saw my add asking for yarn online to make hats for the homeless population here. I met one lady about 30 minutes away from my house, and she gave me a 13 gallon sized garbage bag absolutely stuffed with yarn. Then last week I received a box that was nearly bursting at the seams. I feel very fortunate and blessed to have received these donations. I’ll be making lots of hats, and as soon as I can nail making a scarf, I’ll start making scarves for the homeless as well.

As far as personal projects with the yarn I’m wanting to make some dishcloths, socks, scarves, a prayer shawl, and maybe an afghan. We’ll see how much I can practice, and learn.


 

I’ve still been getting a ton of products to review, and I’m a little overwhelmed because I’ve been a bit under the weather for a while. I’ll start posting some of the cool things that I will be testing.

I got some really cool purple lights that have different selections of twinkling. I plan to decorate the craft room with them somehow.

PurpleLights

I will have a shelving unit by the window which is west facing. I have my herbs that I started this summer, and I’m hoping to get some more plants. Since I will be doing that I jumped at the chance at reviewing this grow light.

Grow Light

I’m not exactly sure how I’m going to mount it yet, but the shelving unit won’t be done for  a little while. We’ll have to sand the wood down, prime and paint it, wait for it to dry, and then get the room clean enough to get it set up.

Where Do We Go From Here

 

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Manatee Tea Infuser

So, I let my poor blog go off the rails. In fact over the holidays I must admit I let everything go off the rails, but the past is the past so now we’ll look forward.

We’re trying to get re-established in our budget habits. It’s amazing how quickly bad habits can sneak back into our lives, and how hard they are to break.

So what have we been up to? We had a wonderful Christmas with all of our family get togethers. We were blessed to receive some wonderful gifts. I loved the presents, but time with family is the most precious thing of all.

MrB had some time off for a vacation. We spent that quality time together just enjoying life, listening to old Christmas songs and watching Christmas movies. We discussed some of our plans for our future. I’m always glad to find out that we seem to be on the same page in most aspects of things.

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I’ve spent some of my time recently reviewing products from Amazon. I get a chance to get a product for a deep discount or free in exchange for an honest review. I’m going to try to restrain myself or the whole house will be full of junk. I am enjoying it though.

I’ve been working on some loom knitting. I’m planning on making knit hats for our local homeless. I’ve actually gotten a few really generous donations. My mom is trying to teach me to use a long loom where I could make scarves too. I’m slowly learning.

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I’m also working to turn my craft “junk” room into a true sanctuary for me to do many things. I want the space to be used for loom knitting, reading, and surfing the internet. I’m doing planning on how I want it to look. I went to Big Lots after Christmas and found a comfy recliner, and believe it or not, there was enough room to put it in there. Enough junk had been removed. I bought an end table off of Craigslist that has a small drawer. I went to Hobby Lobby with my dad to spend some of the gift card he got me. I bought a small lamp, and a decorative drawer pull for the end table.

I made true progress the other night while cleaning, because I actually threw away a stack of magazines I’ve been hanging onto for several years. I only saved a few important (to me anyway) magazines. I still have a little ways to go, but I’m confident I can do it. I will take some pictures as I make some progress


So the purpose of this blog from here on out is to follow all of the things that encompass my life. Like many others, I have a very wide array of interests. I may not write every day, because I put too much pressure on myself to come up with something to say. I want to write all kinds of different material here, and I hope it is interesting. Hopefully from here we’ll have a blog that is consistent and will be something that I can do for a long time.