I just killed a COPPERHEAD!!

ALL BY MYSELF!  I went out to water my chickens.  I was pulling the hose out and turned around and noticed something moving about 6 INCHES FROM MY FEET! It was a Copperhead!  I must have stepped right over it it was so close.  Thankfully it was facing the other direction! I was afraid to let the thing go though because then I would always wonder where it was when I went out there.  It was moving towards the pasture so I knew I didn’t have much time to react or it would be gone.  I had to RUN to the barn and grab a shovel.  I snuck up behind it and smashed into the back of its head with the blade of the shovel.  I saw it’s mouth open and venom actually squirted out of it’s fangs a little!  It was SOOOOOOOO creepy!  Eventually it was dead.  I put it on the shovel and walked over to my MIL’s house where my hubby was. I went to the door and yelled to them to come see what I had got.  They both came out assuming I had found a barn kitten or something and couldn’t believe I had killed a snake all on my own!  Richie was SO proud of me!  My mother in law looked at me and said “Well, you really are a farmgirl!”

I wish I had taken a picture of it but I forgot and Richie had already thrown it into the woods!  Bummer!

A day at the Spa

I turned 30 almost a month ago.  My mom and dad sent me a certificate for a day at the spa!  Well, today was the day!  School started back on Monday and the first week of teaching is always pretty special so I decided to go ahead and book my appointment for the weekend after.  This morning I went to the Serenity Day Spa in Searcy to enjoy my treatment.  The morning began with a 30 minute hot oil scalp treatment.  My head was massaged with yummy smelling Nutmeg oil and then wrapped in moist, hot towels.  While the towels set, I was given a foot massage.  After my scalp treatment I was treated to an hour long swedish massage.  It was so relaxing. It made me so sleepy, which I fought, for fear of missing even a second of the massage.  After the massafe I got a brow wax, a manicure and a pedicure.  I was there from about 9:45 until 1:30! Wow it was great.  I still have a facial remaining but the girl who does that had a family emergancy and needed to be out of town. I have scheduled that for later.  It was a great day and a welcome relief after a stressful week!

My cat snorts like a pig!

We found four kittens in the barn.  Richiedecided to bring one into the house the other night.  Eggnog was happily minding his own business eating his dinner.  He sauntered into the living room where he would likely give himself a bath and then sleep for 326 hours before eating again.  About halfway into the room Eggnog noticed the tiny kitten (about 4 weeks old) and got MAD!  He was hissing, growling, meowing, coughing, and…oh yeah, snorting like a pig.  Richie and I were hysterical!  After about 5 minutes I thought, “HEY! I should make a video!” So I grabbed my phone and shot the video below.  We were nice to poor Eggnog and returned the kitten to it’s mother a few minutes later.  Eggnog took about an hour to recover! He rolled on the floor making an awful moaning noise.  If you tried to touch him he would JUMP and then hiss.  I hate to laugh at his misfortune but it was REALLY funny.  I love my cat and have vowed not to bring any more kittens in the house but I will still laugh at this video!

NOTE: You will need to turn up your sound.  I made the video with my phone and it was picking up a lot of background noise.

Back to School

School started back last week for the teachers!  The kids will join us on the 18th!  I apologize to those of you who frequently stop by that I haven’t updated in the last week.  I have a couple posts in the works and just need to get the finishing touches on them.  When I haven’t been busy at school I have be doing some Christmas sewing and watching the olympics.  I hope to get a few posts up over the next few days!

Until then here are a few sites you might want to check out.

http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/
http://www.sewmamasew.com/blog2/
http://www.burdastyle.com/
http://www.modkidboutique.com/cookitblogit/

It’s HOT!

We are in our 7th day of temperatures over 100º!  We also have that nasty humidity which contributes to the heat index which has been over 105º everyday for the last seven days and even as high as 115º!  This is nuts!  Even my husband, who loves the heat, has been complaining.  I’ve been living in a tank top and a pair of cotton shorts for the last week.  I don’t know what I am going to do come Wednesday when I have to go back to school (I teach) and I can’t wear shorts! UGH!

My nice refreshing swimming pool has heated up to a toasty 96º! It isn’t even worth it to get in until the sun goes down.  During the day it just makes you feel worse.

We managed about an hour in the gazebo today to read because there was a nice breeze.  Now we are relaxing in the house and while the air is only set to 81 it feels like a freezer compared to outside.

Of course the pets have the worst of it.  The dogs are knocking down the door to get inside.  When they are out they are hiding in cool places or hanging out in their pool.  The cats don’t seem to move much.  We have a half feral cat that won’t let us pet her.  Even she hasn’t left the porch in days.  The horses seem to hide out in the barn most of the time.  The chickens are actually quite happy because I installed a misting hose in one end of their run.  It really does a great job of cooling the area down.  I’m filling the humming bird feeders daily and the dragonflies are swarming by the thousands.

It’s HOT and everyone feels it!

Here are some pictures from around the place on this hot August afternoon.

Hagrid - lucky enough to have made it inside!

Hagrid - lucky enough to have made it inside!

Thunder - begging to get in!

Thunder - begging to get in!

Lily - emerging from her hidout in the bushes!

Lily - emerging from her hidout in the bushes!

Olive and Hazel - rolling their mist cover bodies in dirt!

Olive and Hazel - rolling their mist cover bodies in dirt!

Francine and Claudia - giving shocked looks to the childish hens behind them!

Francine and Claudia - giving shocked looks to the childish hens behind them!

Claudias mist covered feathers.

Claudia's mist covered feathers.

Eggnog - hiding under the gazebo.

Eggnog - hiding under the gazebo.

B.B. (front), Obama (back left) and Houdini (back right) - Relaxing under the truck.

B.B. (front), Obama (back left) and Houdini (back right) - Relaxing under the truck.

 

Traveler - looking for watermelon!

Traveler - looking for watermelon!

Traveler again (Buckshot and Baby wouldnt come out!)

Traveler again (Buckshot and Baby wouldn't come out!)

Dragonfly resting on a fence post.

Dragonfly resting on a fence post.

Christmas in July

I did a Christmas in July gift exchange on MaryJanesFarm.org.  I got paired up with StarMeadow from Michigan.  We emailed and exchanged ideas about what we might like but decided we would basically surprise eachother with a box full of stuff.  My box came from StarMeadow earlier this week.  All I can say is WOW!!!

Here is my box of loot!

Fist off the box itself is beautiful. It is one of those photo storage type boxes with an herb print on it.  Also included was a cute little bunny, a dishcloth hand knit by StarMeadow, a little handbag with a chinese fan pattern, a bar of handmade lavender peppermint soap (smells SOOO good), a little finger pincushion complete with some cute pins, a Rada Cutlery Pairing knife, a ball of Magic Stripes yarn, some fabric with different bluework designs on it, a bag of beads, a little book called Girlfriend Gumbo, and an antique ice cream/shortening spoon because I collect antique kitchen tools. This was such a great gift!  I truely enjoyed this exchange.  StarMeadow hasn’t gotten the box I sent her yet.  I hope it gets there by monday!  Thanks so much T.!  I really had fun!

July Reading List

Well this was an interesting month for reading.  I had some bummer books and some really fabulous reads!  After some reader suggestions, in this months reading list you will see a few changes.  First, I will give a little blurb about what each book is about.  Secondly, I will rate each book on a scale of 1 star to 5 stars.  Please keep in mind though that we all have different opinions and you may love something that I hated.

If you have any suggestions for books you would like me to read and review please leave a comment or email me.  If I can find the book at the local bookstore or my library I will give it a try.

**1/2 Drowning Ruth – Christina Shwarz

Drowning Ruth was an interesting and quick read.  Taking place in 1919 this book tells the story of a woman and her sister and the secrets that bind them together.  Love, death, lust, sorrow and happiness spin throughout this story and keep you wondering until the end what really did happen.  The story will keep you on your toes. 

I found the constant switching between characters to be a little confusing at times but it was an interesting story.

 

* While I was Gone – Sue Miller

Jo Becker has every reason to be content. She has three dynamic daughters, a loving marriage, and a rewarding career. But she feels a sense of unease. Then an old housemate reappears, sending Jo back to a distant past when she lived in a communal house in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Drawn deeper into her memories of that fateful summer in 1968, Jo begins to obsess about the person she once was. As she is pulled farther from her present life, her husband, and her world, Jo struggles against becoming enveloped by her past and its dark secret.

I did not enjoy this book much at all.  The story was long winded, predictable and just did not hold my interest.  I struggled greatly to get through this book.

****1/2 My Antonia – Willa Cather

The moving portrait of an orphan boy and immigrant girl who find hardship — and love — on the American prairie.

That really describes it well.  I can not believe I have not read this book before!  I love books about this American Prairie yet for some reason it never before occurred to me to read this American Classic.  The story is refreshing and well told.  Being told from the male perspective offers a different twist to many of the pioneer tales out there.  I loved this book and read it cover to cover in a day!

 

*** Stone Creek – Victoria Lustbader

In the small town of Stone Creek, a random encounter offers two lonely people a chance at happiness. Danny, a young widower, and Lily who has left her workaholic husband back in the city meet and find solace and respite in each other upsetting a precarious balance between joy and despair, between what cannot happen . . . and what must.

A well written and interesting story, although somewhat predictable.  I enjoyed this book as a fun summer read.  There were a few sexually explicit scenes and some language that I found unnecessary.

****1/2 Still Life with Chickens - Catherine Goldhammer

In this beautifully written and frequently funny memoir, Catherine Goldhammer, newly separated, along with her twelve-year-old daughter, starts life anew in a cottage by the sea, in a rustic town where live bait is sold from vending machines. Partly to please her daughter and partly for reasons not clear to her at the time, she begins this year of transition by purchasing six baby chickens—whose job, she comes to suspect, is to pull her and her daughter forward out of one life and into another. An unforgettable story filled with hope and grace, Still Life with Chickens shows how transcendent wisdom can be found in the most unlikely of places.

I found this book very charming!

 

***** Little Heathens – Mildred Armstrong Kalish

Little Heathens offers a loving but realistic portrait of a “hearty-handshake Methodist” family that gave its members a remarkable legacy of kinship, kindness, and remembered pleasures. Recounted in a luminous narrative filled with tenderness and humor, Kalish’s memoir of her childhood shows how the right stuff can make even the bleakest of times seem like “quite a romp.”
I LOVED LOVED LOVED this book! I think this was my favorite of the month and one of the best of the summer!  The stories were quick, cute and captivating.  There were so many great tips, recipes and ideas all mixed into this beautiful memoir.  The ONLY drawback was that the author assumes that the reader has never tasted home-grown veggies, used an outhouse, or slept in a bed made with sheets that hung on a clothesline.  I think with the current green/sustainable living trend a lot more people have done these things than the author gives credit to.  That being said it was a very lovely book.

Magazine

***** MaryJanes Farm Magazine

MaryJanes Farm magazine now comes out 6 times a year!  Each issue is jam packed with all kinds of green living tips, sewing and crafting projects, gardening ideas and etc.  This months issue even has plans to build a fantastic green house for less than $150!

Click the picture to find out how you can subscribe or to order back issues.

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