Thursday, December 27, 2012 This Spartan is absolutely beautiful! Check it out if you love classic RV's like I do.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Turn a Trampoline Into a Greenhouse! | How Does She...

Turn a Trampoline Into a Greenhouse! | How Does She...

Got an old trampoline and a yen for a greenhouse? Are you thrifty and willing to DIY? Then check this out!

Saturday, December 01, 2012


Today was one of those gorgeous, warm, days that you get in the deep south during the late fall/winter quite regularly. It gives you a lot of energy to do things outside as well as inside.

Today was spent raking some leaves up for my compost piles. We don't worry about "getting rid of leaves" on our property because to us it is pure "gold". As the leaves decompose they make all the ground more fertile as every year passes. 

This is the time of year that I spray an organic horticultural oil on my fruit trees to smother any over-wintering bugs. I will spray again in the spring once the leaves are out as this spray can be used all year round.

Stay busy till God calls you. That is my motto!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012


If you are a hot pepper nut like me you will want to check out this site. They have every pepper out there.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

An Awesome Artist!

Please check out these awesome Christmas cards from my dear friend, Cathe in Tennessee who is almost totally blind. She lives alone on her mountain and visits her husband who resides in a Veterans home because of an incurable brain injury called, Frontal Lobe Dementia. I really admire her for many reasons.

Christmas Cards by Artist Cathe

Friday, November 23, 2012

Our Bamboo News from Lewis Bamboo

Our Bamboo News from Lewis Bamboo

Do you love bamboo but not sure where to purchase? Lewis Bamboo is highly recommended by me. Check out their marvelous website with more pics and information than you will find at any other bamboo nursery that I am aware of. They have been around for a long time and can be trusted to do right by all their customers.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Why Do Some Cats Give "Love Bites?" | The Smart Living Network

Why Do Some Cats Give "Love Bites?" | The Smart Living Network

I have had more cats than I can count over the years. I've had cat rescues with up to 30 cats to care for and I've also fostered cats for others when they were unable to care for their cat. During this time I have learned a lot about cats but this one was always a puzzle for me since not all cats do this. Interesting read!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

backyard cottage blog: backyard cottage workshop next week

backyard cottage blog: backyard cottage workshop next week: Would you like to learn more about backyard cottages, meet others thinking about building a backyard cottage and talk to experts in the desi...

A very good thing for those with aging parents or to rent out for extra income. You could get your own home paid for this way!!!! 

Saturday, November 10, 2012


It's that time of year when I plant Pansies to get us through the boring days of winter. Having  a short winter is nice, but still...winter is winter.

Since I need to stay away from germs this time of year, Db went to Lowes and bought me three flats of mixed colors for all the pots and hanging baskets I need to replace. From late spring to this time of year I grow Impatiens in those pots and baskets. We haven't had a frost yet so they are still blooming but are straggly looking from being so rootbound. You can see how they looked in earlier posts after I had them planted up in spring.

Yesterday I planted up ten containers but I have at least another ten to do today. I always re-use most of the potting soil by taking a bulb planter and cutting out three holes in the rootbound potting soil. I then take a sharp knife and slice through all the roots left to help in the decompostiton. This saves me a lot of expensive potting soil which I buy in 50# bags from our local feed and seed store.

After the pansies are planted I water them well with lukewarm water with Bach Rescue Remedy added to help them recover from the shock. I always gently rip the roots apart before I plant them as well as remove all flowers and buds so that they will immediately start to spread out into the potting soil. A bit new soil is added to the holes and all over the top.

A week after planting, I water them once a week with my "Magic Elixir" and they begin to take off like a rocke!. If the temps are going to fall into the twenties I will cover all of them with a small piece of frost blanet and take it off after the sun rises. 

These will grow on till mid April when I replace them with Impatiens once again. I used to switch off every year by using Wax Begonias which also do well down here all through the spring/summer, but I have found that the Impatiens give a much bigger "punch" for the money.

I will add some pictures later tonight or tomorrow after I have finished with the planting.

Friday, November 09, 2012

50 Crafts and Projects Using Recycled, Repurposed, & Upcycled Cans {Saturday Inspiration & Ideas}

50 Crafts and Projects Using Recycled, Repurposed, & Upcycled Cans {Saturday Inspiration & Ideas} 

This is something I am always looking for...what to do with my emtpy tin cans. I use them for many things but always looking for more. I hope you will enjoy checking them out as much as I did.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Austin's Tiny Open House

Austin's Tiny Open House This young mans hard work and determination are a good example for all American youth. Kudo's Austin!!!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Chocolate Babka « Relishing It

Chocolate Babka « Relishing It

I had to to send this to y'all! I've been looking for a recipe like this for years and I bet you would like it too!

Saturday, October 13, 2012


This is the time of year when I start thinking of planting a lot of lettuce. My son and I are big salad eaters so I try and plant as many different varieties as I can find and have room for. I always plant in pots so I can easily cover with some landscape fabric if a hard freeze is expected and have never lost a pot of lettuce yet with this technique. I am sure it would not work in the north, but it will in the deep south.

Lettuce really detests hot weather so October is a great time for me to grow. I start seeds from middle Sept. throughout the fall, winter, up till March when I finally stop till fall again,. 
I use a good potting soil mixed with my own compost and a bit of sand to give a loose, free-flowing mix that will stay damp but not water logged. I never pull the plants but instead just cut enough leaves for a salad with my scissors. The lettuce will keep growing this way for months. 

If there is one thing I never run out of in the cool months it is leaf lettuce!

Friday, October 12, 2012


There really is nothing more frustrating that beginning dinner and discovering that you are out of onions! UGH! Onion powder or onion salt just doesn't always cut it when it comes to the flavor you want for certain dishes.

I live quite far from any supermarket and certain times of year I have no onions growing. I have no good place to store them here in the deep south where it stays warm much of the year so I had to think of a way to have some on hand when I needed them no matter what.

That is when I came upon the idea to sprout my own onion tops from the root end that I was always throwing into the compost bucket. 

It is so easy to do that you are going to be asking yourself, "now why didn't I think of that?"

I save a few of my tin cans for starting seeds and cuttings and this is what I use although you could use a pretty pot if you want. Just fill with a good, loose, potting soil, water well and then place a root end of any onion on top of the soil and press down. Allow the slice to dry out for a day or two before doing this.
In about a week or less you see some green shoots pushing their way out of the center of the slice of onion. You can use these as you would any scallions or chives in your recipes. Have fun with it!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Flu Shot Being Forced on Health Workers | The Alliance for Natural Health USA

Flu Shot Being Forced on Health Workers | The Alliance for Natural Health USA

If I feel strongly about something I will post it here on my blog. Since everyone is entitled to their own opinion you may feel free to post it in the comments section.


I have so many plants to put up this time of year that it takes me a week of hard work. Between cleaning off the back porch and bringing the most tender inside,not to mention cleaning off two glass tables, chairs, sweeping (you get the idea)

I have finished half the porch but this is what I have left to do! UGH!
At least this part makes me smile. ;-)

Every year we put 6mil. plastic all around the back porch to use as a passive solar collector and to save on our electric bills since we heat with electric. Ever since we started doing this our electric bills dropped by half in the winter and we couldn't be happier. It is not a lot of work for Db and I to do without any help and we have a lot of fun as we do it since Db is a jokester and always will be. 

This is some of the cuttings I take every year. They are left on the back porch but I cover them with bubble wrap so that they are sort of in a greenhouse within a greenhouse. I've never lost a plant or cutting yet doing this.  Beware though, I am in zone 8 in southern AL and we don't have horrific winters here. Also, this porch faces southeast and is right next to a pond which also helps with moderating the temps. On top of that we are in a grove of giant bamboo (Moso) which cuts any wind, which we seldom get anyway since we sit in a valley.

This is a balcony that we built off of the middle of the back porch for barbecuing. It looks out over the pond, and a dock with a gazebo on the dock. Db and I have done everything ourselves to this place with the help of our son, Chad.

Well, break time is over so I better get back to work! Have a great day!

Monday, October 08, 2012


Suncast Tiered Raised Garden Kit - Gardens & Flower Beds (Google Affiliate Ad)

Every November or late October I plant tons and tons of pots and all manner of containers filled with colorful Pansies to get me through the winter with a smile.

Living in the southern part of Alabama our winters are quite mild so gardening of some sort or another is always possible 365 days a year. Cool winter veges like Turnips, Collards, Spinach, all manner of lettuces and other greens sit right next to the pots of Pansies. They not only make me smile they also fill our bellies on a chilly winter evening in a pot of homemade vegetable soup with either a pan of cornbread, biscuits, or muffins.


When people are looking for affordable housing during these trying times in our economy, they now have a new form of DIY housing using shipping containers. Shipping containers can be had for around $1000.00-4000.00 each not counting the cost of getting it to you and the land to put it on. It would seem that this is a steal until you start to add up all the costs of turning this piece of steel into a home. First off is cutting openings for windows and doors as well as vents, etc. This takes a special cutting torch which very few people just happen to have on hand so you will either have to see if you can rent one with instruction on how to use it, or hire the work out. After you have the openings cut you have to find a way to frame them for your doors and windows which may not be so easy. Windows and doors are funny things and the slightest millimeter off in size or square can mean your window or door will not go in. Next you have to do your wiring, plumbing, insulation, drywall or paneling...believe me it can add up if you are not experienced in doing these things for yourself or cannot do them due to code laws in your area. If money is no object and you have your heart set on living in a revamped shipping container then I say, more power to you!

Keep Brown Sugar Soft

Keep Brown Sugar Soft: Brown sugar will get hard in a heart beat if you don't do something to keep the moisture in the container or bag. Here is a tip I use that really works and is pretty much free. 

I posted this to recently.

Saturday, October 06, 2012

CAKE. | events + design: cupcakes in a cup

CAKE. | events + design: cupcakes in a cup: This would be a wonderful idea for a ladies tea or party!~ Just make sure that you use oven proof mugs/cups. Then smile when you get the compliments as if you thought of it all by yourself! LOL!

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Wednesday already???

Hard to believe we are in mid-week already. I have not accomplished as much as I had hoped what with a rainy weekend and now Db getting sick yesterday with what appears to be the flu. Thought I had enough time to get the Homeopathic Flu Nosode I buy every year but it started early this go-round. At 68 you can't be too careful with things like this so I am doctoring him up with all my alternative remedies. He seems to be better. Our son, Chad is helping Db's employee,Henry until he is up and around again. Thank God for this! No one ever said getting old was going to be easy now did they? I guess it is a lot better if you are rich. LOL! I'm taking cuttings of shrubs and getting the planting room and greenhouse ready for the January race. Some things have to be started very early. Well, I better get off my duff and get some lunch ready for our son when he gets in. Hope everyone has a great rest-of-the-week.

Sunday, September 23, 2012


About  This was a print magazine for a few years but seems to be re-vamping to an online zine. You can read all the print magazines on this site for free; just click on the "ARCHIVES" link. lot's OF INFO 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

How to Make a Recycled Paper Rolled Magazine Balloon Bowl

How to Make a Recycled Paper Rolled Magazine Balloon Bowl: Pictures of bowls made from recycled, rolled magazines have popped up all over the internet, but available instructions frequently leave something to be desired. This is an in-depth tutorial with step by step instructions on how to recycle paper from magazines, catalogs, old homework assignments, or anything else into a cute bowl.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Holder for Charging Cell Phone (made from lotion bottle) | Make It and Love It

Holder for Charging Cell Phone (made from lotion bottle) | Make It and Love It I thought this was a great craft idea for keeping your cell phone out of danger like the kitchen sink or potty! Easy to make!


This is the time of year when I make up any herbal tinctures I am running low on. I just finished one for my husband who leans towards skin ulcers on his ankle and now it is my Yellow Root (  xanthorhiza simplicissima ) that keeps my once outrageous cholesterol levels normal.

Yellow Root grows wild in the southeast around streams and rivers and any place that is damp, like my wetland acres. It has been used for multiple physical problems over history, but for me it is it's ability to lower my cholesterol level to a normal reading. After a huge amount of Lipitor almost killed me, my husband started telling his friends/customers the story and one long time customer had a grandmother who swore by Yellow Root for anything having to do with the heart. She was in her 90's then. He ended up bringing Db a huge bag of yellow root and I made up a quart of tincture and planted some in pots to experiment with it.

Here is how I made the tincture:

1 quart glass canning jar
Inexpensive Vodka
Yellow Root (I used the whole plant)

Fill the jar with the Yellow Root and fill to the top with the Vodka.
Shake twice a day for six to eight weeks and keep in a dark, cool, spot.
Strain through a strainer and then a coffee filter into another jar.
Remove enough for a medicine bottle with a dropper

Dosage: 4 drops of tincture once a day.

After taking this for 3 months and again having my usual test, my cholesterol was back to normal. I did not change my eating habits or anything else other than adding the Yellow Root to my supplement regime.

My doctor was so surprised he made notes in my chart about my experiment and said, "Well, don't stop then."

Friday, September 14, 2012

I hope everyone has a marvelous weekend! I will be spending it digging some holes for the new fruit trees that will be arriving in November. It is never too early to dig some really good "homes" for your babies before they arrive.

I like to add a lot of amendments to my planting holes to begin the composting process and have lot's of mycorrhiza beginning. The soil that the plants grow in is the most important part. Without good soil you will never have superior crops of any kind.

I planted two plum and two cherry this spring and will be planting two apple and two peach in November. Next year I will plant two pear and then I think that will do it for us here. We already have blackberries, blueberries and strawberries.  Ooooops, I forgot that I want to plant some Kewi vines!

I buy only from Stark Brothers. They always gave me the best trees for the money, even though they are far from cheap. I believe you get what you pay for and they do stand behind their stock.

OK, I'm off, so y'all take care but have fun! 

Welcome to the New World of Pickling

Welcome to the New World of Pickling  I only post those products that I would buy myself to my blog. (have no control over googles ads) and here is one I think is grand! There is nothing like fermented pickling. It is so much healthier than vinegar pickling and with this product it makes it easy peasy!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Come on in for a cuppa!

I took this pic yesterday morning while taking an early walk about. After downloading the pic I thought what a lovely scene this makes. When I placed it on my facebook page everyone said it felt welcoming and I had named it the above title. "Come on in for a cuppa".

In another six weeks it will be time to change all of the summer flowers for the winter blooms of pansies. There are a few others I could include, but it is an on-going experiment to see which ones are the toughest. Pansies are definitely tough!

Our home is surrounded by bamboo, giant hardwoods, pines and tall shrubs so it is well protected from the elements. This area is particularly protected as it faces south, even though very shaded by a grove of bamboo and Oaks that you can't see from this angle.

I water everything by hand twice a day in the summer and use my "Magic Elixir" once a week. This is a completely organic fertilizer I make up myself. It keeps everything beautiful throughout the long spring, summer, fall season here in southern Alabama.

Thank you for visiting today and God bless! 

Monday, September 03, 2012

Sunday, September 02, 2012

Saturday, September 01, 2012


All these plants above were started over the late winter by making cuttings from "mother" plants that were just about finished blooming for the year.

I take many cuttings by just placing them in a glass of water, but my secret to real success is the use of activated charcoal powder.

Charcoal powder will keep the water free from bacteria all winter long while the roots grow away. Come spring or whenever I choose to pot up the cuttings, they will take off like a rocket just like these in the picture above.

There are many places where you can buy activated charcoal online but make sure that you get a good price as it can go from very reasonable to outrageous. When I have the time I will put up some links to my favorite places to buy.

Here is how to do it:

Fill a tall container of some kind like a drinking glass or jar with non-chlorinated water and add 1/2 teaspoon activated charcoal to the water. Don't worry about stirring as it will dissolve on it's own and settle to the bottom.

Take your cuttings and add them to the jar and just wait as long as you wish. They will root pretty quickly but you can keep them in the water almost indefinitely.

A trick for potting up cuttings started in water is to make sure that you keep the potting soil very wet for the first few weeks until they become acclimated to a normal soil condition. Otherwise they may die on you. DO NOT ALLOW TO DRY OUT!

That's it for today! Good luck!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Been a long time...

It's been a long time since I wrote on this blog. So much has been going on in my personal life that I just have not been able to find the time nor the energy to write. I also was so thwarted with my slow dialup connection that I had just about given up all internet use except to keep up with email. Even that was difficult with my connection.

Then one day a few weeks ago Excede satellite came into my life and took me out of the dark ages and into the light! I now can do most everything I want on the internet including keeping this blog up. The best part is I am actually saving 20.00 a month since having my home phone turned off and getting rid of Netzero for my dialup service.!

Last summer Db moved into his new shop and has been working ever since. It was a rough year but he is so glad he moved from town now that it is all said and done. I love having him here, too! So do the furbabies who look forward to his coming and going for breaks and lunch.

The picture above was taken a few weeks ago of my front yard by the chain link fence we had installed last summer due to a new member of the family; Louie the Beagle...he refused to stay put so we had to grit our teeth and have the fence installed. Then he would dig under it so we had to connect some of our farm fencing to the bottom about 2' out and pin it down with cut up coat hangers bent into staple-like shape. Well, it worked finally and he can no longer escape our compound. 

I will try and get this blog caught up with picture and news as my energy allows. Until then, God bless and have a great weekend holiday! bamboochik (deb)