31 July 2012

Friday, Saturday, Sunday


After work Friday, I finished packing up the kids and the car and we headed out to Oceanside, Oregon with one of my awesome coworkers, Erin, to spend the night at the beach.  Oceanside is teeny, with no cell signal, or wifi for internet, and it's gorgeous there.

We were sure to go see the sunset.
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Erin and I went to Garibaldi to pick up some tuna for her to can, the kids, Robert, and I went down to the beach again.  Of course. We took Erin's golden, Dealer, with us.

There was a little tunnel in the side of the mountain.  Robert went through to see where it went and when he came back, me and Carus went through.  We didn't go down to the beach on the other side, but it was still a nice view.
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We then let Leia and Dealer off the leashes so they could run and play, and that they did. Yoda had been off his leash, he gets let off the second we step on the sand because that's when he gets all silly.  He loves the beach. He walked through the tunnel with me and Carus, but he didn't seem to get in many of my pictures so none of him this time.

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Leia and Dealer
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Erin's chihuahua, Alpine.  Isn't he adorable?!
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We headed home shortly after lunch, Robert wanted to get started on building his shed this weekend and he had to started getting some supplies.

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And here he is getting started on the base/foundation of The Shed.
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I went out on my lunch break trying to get a 366.  I was expecting to use my lavender bush and one of the bees that hover around it.
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But then I noticed this little blue dragonfly and spent the next 20 minutes kneeling trying to be fast enough to get a shot of him.
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After work I went with my friend G to the barn.
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Wynston, my favorite Frisian.
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26 July 2012


... and yard and garden update, cause that's interesting to more than just me...meh, it's my blog so you have to suffer through!!  Muahahahaha!  (That's like one of those evil cartoon character laughs, by the way.)

ANYHOO! (Hi, Aunt Pam!)

On ward and up ward.

Walking the yard with the puggy dog.
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We've FINALLY finished putting in the new bark mulch. This has been like the second hottest week we've had all summer and of course we're working outside, after work, on the non-shady part of the yard.  We did one load a day for 4 days, which I suppose is better than 4 loads in one day.  Maybe.

Yard before.  All dirt (stoopid stoopid clay dirt)(I spelled stupid like stoopid on purpose. Say stoopid out load - more emphasis on the "oo" sound in stupid then when it's just stupid. See.  Extra stupid.)

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Yard after!

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Before :(

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After! :)

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Now for garden updates!

The peas have stopped coming in. And are covered in little grasshopper like bugs.  They don't appear to be eating any of the plants so I'm not convinced they're bad bugs. I think I'll pull them out and allow the cucumbers to take over their space cause the 4 plants that are doing great are DOING GREAT!

The other two, as well as the zucchini and squash are still fighting stoopid powdery mildew.  I've moved onto homemade solutions to get rid of it because I still do not want bad bad chemicals!! It's helped, but not fixed it. Yet.

We have volunteer carrots popping up all over the place.  I have NO idea how they got there cause I didn't plant them, but whatevs. I'll get like 5 carrots.
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Some squirrel(s) have planted some peanuts in our yard and we keep pulling up the starts.  I've allowed one planted in my garden to stay, and transplanted one from elsewhere in the yard to the garden.  They aren't doing much, and I doubt they will, but its like free plants so I'm cool with it.

I think I'm allergic to the straw, which doesn't bode well for me if we use it again next year.  I only get a little itchy where I touch it and break out with teeny tiny water blisters on my hands.  Or I'm allergic to something else and I don't realize it - either way, I'm not bugged enough by things to worry about it.

The potato tower!  I really hope lots of potatoes are growing in there.  Really, I do.  My neighbors' potatoes have flowered already. But she didn't plant hers this year; she apparently missed some last year. There is still plenty of time for things to get crazy up in there.
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Sooo, out of curiosity. Who is reading my blog? Wanna leave me a comment so I can see how awesome you are?

25 July 2012

206 and 207 of 366

Pretty, regal Simba kitty.
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I've picked up quite a few bulbs from the grocery store.  I've gotten tulips, daffodils, crocuses, and dahlias. This was the first dahlia to bloom.  I planted two and I couldn't remember which colors they were so I was surprised when it bloomed.  The other one has yet to bloom, so I get to have another surprise soon.
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Also, I need to work on photographing flowers... 

22 July 2012

Good dog

Leia usually starts out the night sleeping next to our bed on the dog bed next to Yoda, or sprawled out on the bathroom floor, and then she moves off to her dog bed next to my desk in the office or the couch in the living room.  The office dog bed is in direct view of the front door.

One time she woke the house barking like mad and when I went out to see why I found her barking at a dish towel that was sitting on the coffee table.

The other night I was woken at 3 a.m by frantic barking coming from Leia and the living room.  Yoda popped up and ran out there to join in the barking and I stumbled after him.  I found Leia barking at the front door.  

It wasn't her "I just saw a cat" bark. 

And it wasn't her "oh no that __fill in the blank___ is going to eat me, save me!" bark (which she uses for aforementioned dish towels and plant leaves blowing in the wind).

It was her "there's a bad guy and he better watch out" bark.

It freaked me the frick out.  I peaked out windows, but saw nothing. No one running away or driving away. Nothing.  It was quiet.  

Now granted, she could have seen a cat peaking in the little window by the door, or a shadow crossed it and she just barely saw it and/or was half asleep.  

But whatever it was, it was reassuring that I have an alarm. I was able to check the windows and doors, and go back to bed.

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Good dog.

21 July 2012


Neighbors' hydrangea flowers.
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We put down bark mulch today.  Well, Adam and Robert did most of the work as I had to work today (covering someone's vacation).  Can you spot the where the new stuff starts there on the left?

Tomorrow, we'll do the other half of the yard.
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19 July 2012


It's been cloudy and damp this week.  It's still trying to be warm too, but it's only succeeding it making it incredibly muggy and sticky outside.  Reminds me of Florida - though a little cooler.

But because of the rain showers moving through, we get the occasional...


Seen from my driveway. (Stupid street light, ruining my view all the damn time.)  Very gorgeous golden color coming from the sunset to the right (west).  I was facing southeast.
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The other end of the rainbow - with a bonus double rainbow on this side.
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18 July 2012

Summer pickles


Summer pickles - or refrigerator pickles.  Depends on what you call it.  Basically, sliced onion, a few garlic cloves, and lots of sliced cucumbers in a container of vinegar.  It has to sit in the frig for 2 days, but the slices I sneaked were good.

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17 July 2012

Did you know it was already JULY?!

No seriously, it's July already.

This year is going by incredibly fast.  Okay, I'll get on with the catch up.

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Sisters and a cousin.

I went to high school with two of these girls, the twins.  One lives in Idaho and was in town visiting so the other threw a little party so everyone could visit with her while she was here. They were already posing for a family shot so I grabbed one for my 366.

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Gramma picked up the kids Thursday afternoon and kept them until Sunday.
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Green bean heavy harvest.  With this batch I actually have enough green beans collected for a meal. YUM!
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LONG green bean - 7 inches!

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Bed time snack - peaches.  They were very good too; worth the itchy mouth. (I have an allergy to most fruits and occasionally vegetables.  Usually only raw fruits, and some worse than others. And it never keeps me from eating them.)
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(Instagram photo)

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Last minute camp out at a friends place.  We packed up some sleeping bags, the dogs, and had some fun hanging around the campfire.  Unfortunatey the air mattress had a slow leak and we didn't sleep well.
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(Instagram photo)

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I passed on my glider rocking chair from when Carus was a baby to a friend who just had twins.  They were born premature and are still in the NICU. They are doing good, though still have the problems preemie babies face.  There is a lot of promise that baby girl will get to come home soon, and hopefully her brother won't be far behind her.  I took the chair out to her Sunday and sat and visited for awhile; then I made her pose with the recently acquired hand prints of the babies in her new rocking chair.  If you can't tell, those hand prints are TEENY!
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I had Monday off and took the kids to the zoo.

Every time we go to the zoo the kids pose with this bronze goat statue.  They used to both fit on that statue, but now...

The zoo trip plan worked out well coinciding with a Facebook photography group I'm a member of doing a zoo meetup too. I actually got to meet a few of these photographers I've been chatting with for months, which was nice. The day was a perfect day for the zoo.

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I got many more photos of this trip, and I'm uploading them to a Facebook album.  I made it public so you should have no problems looking at it.  (Photos will be added to it as I get around to it.)

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Robert helping me water my garden.
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10 July 2012

Garden harvest

Garden harvest from today.  A bunch of peas and a zucchini.

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There are tons more peas that will soon be ready to pick, as well as so many tomatoes, a few more zucchini, a couple of squash, and lots of little cucumbers.  I might even be able to pull up a couple of the onions to get a little onion.  And I'm crossing my fingers that all that green coming out of the potato tower means lots of potatoes inside.

More YAY!

09 July 2012

Still no broken bones

Adam and Carus floating on the river (really a creek).

Sunday afternoon we went out to Robert's coworkers house to cool off and BBQ.  They don't live far from us and they have a creek running through their property, which was a welcome escape from our little heat wave.  Summer has finally arrived and it got up to the high 80s, low 90s Sunday. And yeah, I know that's nothing for most of you, but it's enough excuse for us to go cool off.
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We even had a little fire on the water.
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On my lunch break today I went out to the garden to check on things. And I slipped on some mud and fell.  My butt is okay, but the hand I put out to catch my fall was not.  The wrist, and especially the pad of my thumb hurt like a bitch and I became a whiny baby.

I ended up waiting until Robert got home to take me to get an x-ray because with the Monday I was having, I would not have been surprised if I had gotten in an accident if I tried to drive myself.

I didn't break it; and I'm feeling a little jipped.  With this much pain I expect a broken bone. I might have bones of steel or something.  With how much I fall or walk into things, how have I not broken a bone???

In related news, its hard to type one-handed.

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*This photo was taken with my phone and processed with Instagram.

07 July 2012

And then I got a week behind...

It started out as just "slacking" for the weekend because I didn't want to turn my computer on.  I was pouting about my mini vacation being up too soon.  And then I put it off until I finished a task, or chore, or or or...

And now it's been a full week since I've posted.

I've stayed caught up with my 366s though, so that's the important thing.  At least to me.

Now, let's get this party started.

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Technically this was the last day of the Reverb Broads, but I wasn't inspired to do the prompt then and I'm not inspired to do it now so I'll pass.  It's due to return in December and I'll decide then if I want to do it.

Had to make a trip to Home Depot. Again.  We walked from one end of HD to the other several times, always remembering something else we needed that "convienently" was on the other side of the store.  Here we were attempting to find a new flag pole for our flag without having to buy a full new set of flag pole, flag, and mounting bracket since our mount and flag were still in good shape - just the pole broke.  The copper pipe would have worked beautifully except that it was kind of heavy and very expensive.  We ended up settling on a wood broom handle replacement thing....that was too big for the mount.
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Robert is making progress on the reshaping of the yard project.  He is leveling it out at different levels since our yard is on a hill and then the big pile he and Leia are standing on will go away and his shop will be built.  We are also discussing adding more grass, some other plants, and maybe a stone path.  Not sure if this all will get completed this summer or if our funds will run out before our oomph does. We'll see!

Actually, the pile is on it's way out.  Robert has a coworker that came over and picked up 1/3 of the pile already and will take the rest too.

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Garden update!

These are the pickling cucumbers. YUM!  There are so many little bitty baby cucumbers all over those vines. I better start researching pickling recipes.  I have some other cucumbers - bush cucumber - that weren't doing great.  They got some powdery mildew because it's been so rainy (surprise surprise) and I almost lost one.  The mildew started to show up on these cucumbers as well as the squash and zucchini so I went to the store to get fungicidal soap.  I couldn't find fungicidal soup, but I found this Ortho organic fungicide and 95% of the mildew was cleared up with one application.  All the affected plants have bounced back and I've done another application to get rid of a few of the remaining spots.

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Pea tee pees!
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Pea pod!
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Bitty tomato!
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Itty zucchini!  (See some of the white spots on the leaf in the bottom right corner and stem bottom middle - that's powdery mildew. It was worse on the underside of the leaves.)
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Baby squash!
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After another trip to HD to return to the too big wooden handle, we found a metal pole with a little plastic rake on the end.  Robert just removed the rake and voila - new flag pole. Just in time for the 4th of July.
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Happy 4th of July!

We hosted our 3rd annual 4.O.J. BBQ with some of the usual suspects in attendance.  Here is Carus and her friend S.  We adore S and her parents.  We really need to work on getting together more often than the 3ish times of year we have managed.

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The spread.  Well, most of it.  The potato salad was getting mixed up - soon to be put in the black bowl, and the chicken were on the grill getting all yummy.
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Some of the main gang.  We had a few show up later, but for some reason I didn't get pictures of them.  I focused more on maning the grill and hanging out than taking pics.
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Getting my grill on! I make some really good BBQ chicken.  The secret is... don't over cook them! For legs and thighs 30 minutes in the oven at 375 degrees and then sauce them and finish on the grill.  I use propane and keep the heat about 400 degrees.  (You can do them completely on the grill or completely in the oven too.)  Pull them off when they are no longer pink and let them sit 10 minutes (or are just barely pink and then put them in an off but still warm oven for 10 minutes).  Don't overcook the chicken!  Actually, don't over cook any meat or food. Trust me.
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Instead of putting on our own show this year, we went and watched the Forest Grove firework show put on by the fire department.  It was great!  We had a few straggling sparklers left over from last year that we let the kids do, because it's not 4th of July without sparklers.  They didn't want to stay lit though.  Next year I'll have to get some fresh ones.
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Carus and I - okay mostly me - have been chicken sitting for our friends/neighbors (frieghbors? Neighbends?) while they vacay and have fun.  Chickens are so amusing.  I pulled this one out for a little pet which she wasn't too excited about, but she dealt with it.

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The other two chickens the next day.  I've brought down some scrap foods for them to snack on and they weren't able to break open the cherry tomatoes so I gave them a hand and had to encourage them to give them a try.
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While walking down the hill to check on the chickens Carus was messing with her shadow.  It looks like she has a hand growing out of the back of her head.  It made us crack up.
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My first harvest!  A handful of green beans.  I was expecting peas first, or that bitty zucchini that's been growing for 2 weeks, but nope.  The green beans rallied after a recent fertilization with steer poo and are growing like mad.  Steer poo is good poo!
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