Friday, December 07, 2012

It's The Most Busiest Time of the Year

I can't believe it's been over a month since my last post.

I've been doing a lot of things, nothing really very interesting to blog about...I was still shelling pecans, making/canning applesauce, and making/freezing cubed potatoes, french fries, and twice-bakeds.

In my last post I'd mentioned finding the great deal on the Green Giant potatoes and bought 5 bags (50 lbs) worth. I was cubing some up for potato salad, and slicing a lot into fries. We love french fries.
But they were such big, fine, nice potatoes it seemed a dang shame I couldn't make some of them last to have baked potatoes over the cold winter months.

I wanted to find out if I could somehow freeze baked potatoes, and I found out about twice-baked, or loaded potatoes.
Basically you bake the potato, scrape the innards out, mix in some stuff like sour cream, bacon bits, cheese, put it back in, and freeze.

Mostly I used the Loaded Potatoes Make 'em and Freeze 'em recipe from Southern Plate, with a bit of a mix with the Twice Baked recipe from Pioneer Woman.

If you "flash freeze" things on a cookie sheet, you can put them in a ziplock bag and they won't end up demolished or making a mess in the bag.  (I learned you can even do that with frosted cupcakes!)

We had a pretty nice Thanksgiving, not as many in attendance as usual due to some unfortunate health issues, but there was still a house-full, and plenty of good eatin'!

Aunt Diane carving the Turkey
Speaking of turkeys, I still have one in the fridge I need to be cooking!  It's been  in my freezer since last year, when I got a good sale on it. We love left-over turkey, but there's usually not much left-over of the Thanksgiving turkey, so I decided I'd cook our turkey, for no special occasion, just to have to eat at home whenever we wanted some turkey.

I realized later on I don't know how to cook a turkey. I never have before.
I keep meaning to FB my Aunt and ask how she cooked the Thanksgiving turkey, because it was sooo gooood! but it seems I don't have enough hours in my days anymore to do everything I want to do!

The day after Thanksgiving, it was Black Friday and the Shopping was On!
Naw, I didn't go out and mix it up with the crowds at the stores. Been there, done that, too freaking old now! lol.

I did my Shopping online. Got some good deals, I think. I had in mind what I wanted to buy, whether it was on sale or not, and I did end up finding sales on most of the things, so that was good.

One of the deals I got was a flat-screen TV for our bedroom. We had an older tv in here, on a stand, that took up a whole corner of the room. I wanted a flat-screen to hang on the wall, and not take up space.

That ended up involving flipping the whole bedroom around. The bed had to be turned to go against the opposite wall, and my desk/computer moved across the room to where the bed used to be, underneath the tv on the wall.
But it wasn't just that easy. First, J had to install the electrical sockets he'd planned on installing, years, probably. The room is so small, we ended up having to completely disassemble the bed and take it out of the room before we could install sockets and hang the tv mount and move my desk. My vacuum cleaner ended up breaking a belt and Walmart didn't have a replacement so J had to go borrow his cousin's.

It ended up being a full, two-day, hard-work job.

It seemed that once the Shopping floodgates opened, there's been no closing them back. I was liking all the deals I was getting, and seeing a lot more deals being posted, I somewhat got back into my deal/coupon shopping so I've been out running my Shopping Route a couple of days.

Among my other deals, I ended up finding bags of 1lb bags of Cranberries and 3lb bags of Sweet Potatoes on clearance for 25¢ each at Aldi's.

I put the Cranberries in the freezer. I have no idea what to do with them, but I guess I'll be looking for recipes later, when things are calmed down some.

The Sweet Potatoes I need to get on the stick and figure out how to Can them, I guess. Or make Pie filling and freeze. Or something!

Oh, and in attempt to rid myself of some of my stuff and also to try to make a little extra dough-ray-me for Christmas spending, I listed several things on Ebay. Sold half of the stuff I listed. Fees and mostly Postage ended up eating me up.

December 1st came along...which is the first day I'll allow myself any Christmas decorating (or candy buying).
Well, here's what happened:

I've mentioned before how a lot of times some of the other FF's at J's station will bring stuff to throw away in the dumpster at the station, and it'll be - not perfectly good - but you know, fix-up-able, or usable, so J will fish it out and bring it home.

One of the things he brought home earlier this year was a "Gemmy 5 foot Singing Dancing Santa".
Apparently Santa didn't sing and/or dance anymore (don't know, didn't try), and his head wasn't attached to the body.
I didn't care if it sang or danced, and it's head sat back into place just fine and stayed there if you left it alone. I knew it would be a great display for my front windows!

For storage, the Santa compresses down to half his height and fits in a box maybe 3 feet tall.
I went out and pulled the box out of the storage room. It was bulky and big for me to carry, so I turned and sat it - maybe a bit too hard - onto the carport floor.

Next thing I know, Santa-man comes SPRINGING up out of his box, and his head flies off and goes rolling across the carport!

It scared the toot out of me, and I screamed like a girl - AHHHHHHHH!!!!! But it was the funniest thing ever, ROFL!

Saturday, November 03, 2012

It's Fall, Y'all

Fall in our yard means falling leaves, brush pile fires, and, sometimes, pecans. (That's PEE-cans, rhymes with BEE-hands.)

I don't know much about pecans...we've had these 3.5 pecan trees in our yard for the 12+ years we've lived here, but I've never really been a nut person. When recipes say *nuts optional, I use my option to leave them out. The squirrels liked them better than I did, so I left them to them.

A few years back sometime I discovered I enjoyed baking for the Holidays, but we wouldn't eat everything I made so I asked around and found out some of my family's favorite things and started baking/making things to give to them. A couple of the recipes called for nuts, and they liked me to not leave the nuts out, lol.
It was then we started battling the squirrels for the pecans.

I didn't know when the pecans were "done", so I waited for them to fall on the ground, and soon discovered that apparently the squirrels got to them first, still on the tree, and they'd nibble and gnaw on the nuts, then throw the rest of the half eaten nut on the ground.

Some years it seemed like the tree didn't make any pecans at all, or else the squirrels hoarded every one of them instead of some and wasting the rest.

So I was having to buy my pecans from the grocery store, which really sucked, when I should have been able to get all I wanted for free!  Last year I waited too long and my local stores were sold out of cooking nuts and I had to buy a can of roasted party pecans to top my sweet potato souffle.

This year our big tree was loaded with pecans. Maybe even more than the squirrels could deal with. We don't know why there were so many this year...not complaining, but if we knew why, maybe we could replicate in future years.

I saw the green husk or shell that the pecans grew in were opened, like a flower, and the pecans were just hanging there like they wanted to be picked. So, we picked.

J and I picked this little basket full one afternoon last week. I only meant to pick a few, what I thought I'd need for cooking, but they were just there, waiting to be picked, and we just kept picking and picking.

Sometime after that we were in the grocery store and I happened to see the prices of pecans. Twelve ounces of shelled pecans were running $7.00 at one store, and $9.99 at another! (Or maybe the $7.00 bag wasn't shelled?)  At any rate, ridiculously expensive!

I said then we needed to be out picking up all the pecans we can get while the gettin's good! I can freeze some for later, and maybe sell any extra.

A few days ago there was a weather system come through; we got an arctic wave something or other, while Hurricane Sandy skidded up the coast. At any rate, we were under high wind warnings for like three days straight.
We lost a good many tree limbs, and one hit and tore the power line away from the house again, but it also shook out a ton of pecans from the trees.

The boys went out yesterday and picked up another basket and some full.  I have been working on cracking/shelling them. It's a boring and tedious job so I can only stand to do so much at a time, but so far I've gotten two pounds shelled!
According to the web, that's just about $30.00 worth of raw Georgia pecans. That's so crazy!

Can't sell these, at least. Ryan's already requested a pecan pie, and I want to try the cinnamon/sugared roasted pecans. Plus what I use in making sweet potato souffle for Thanksgiving and in the loaf of banana bread I make my brother-in-law for Christmas.

Fall also means apples...should also be free apples, but my Dad's apple trees in his fruit orchard got "bit" by frost in the early Spring and didn't make any apples this Fall. (Or so he says.)  He stayed in Florida this Spring/Summer instead of coming up to his Georgia house like he usually does, and a lot of his fruit didn't do well or anything, and black bears ate the pears.

I need to learn about fruit trees, too, as well as pecan trees, so I can go take care of them myself - and fight bear for pears, lol!

Anyway, a few years ago, when the apples were producing good, I took Mom a recipe for crockpot apple butter. Ryan loves apple butter, and that recipe was easy, and Mom had a ton of apples to have to do something with, so she got started making apple butter, and made it every year for a few years after that. She gave jars of it to...well, everybody I guess!  We still have several around here we haven't gotten to yet.

We also like applesauce, so since everyone is apparently well stocked on apple butter, I thought we'd try making applesauce for a change. Only, there was no apples! Boooo :(

Aldi recently had a 3lb bag of Gala and Granny Smith apples for $1.99, so I got a couple bags of those. I had found a recipe online that only called for 4 apples, to be made as a snack or side dish, rather than a mega recipe for perserving. That was good for me to experiment with so if I messed it up or didn't like it, it wouldn't be a big waste.

At a suggestion from a friend in a chat group who also made some homemade applesauce, I used 3 Gala apples, which are sweet, with 1 Granny Smith, for a bite of tartness. Wasn't sure how it would turn out, if it was enough sugar, but it came out right about perfect.

I say right about, the only thing was I don't think I boiled it quite long enough, so when I mashed it, they were more lumpy than smooth, like we're used to, but the taste was just like out of a jar from the store, without all the corn syrup and preservatives.

Kroger had a 2-day sale at Halloween, 10lb of Gala apples for $10 so I bought some more of those, and still had most of the bag of Granny Smiths so I made 6 half-pints of applesauce today. It took 9 Gala apples and 3 Granny Smiths.
I would have made more but I got tired of peeling and cutting apples. I'll make some more in a couple days.

And, last but not least, Fall also means Homemade Vegetable Soup on cold, windy days. Mmmm!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Spent the Day With My Kid

Spending the day with Ryan isn't really unusual, he used to hang out with me, going shopping and stuff a lot. But since he started working night shift at 911 and sleeping during the daytime, it's hard for us to hang out together anymore. Even when he's not working he still wants to stay up all night and sleep all day, so he'll stay "on schedule".

 We (he) wrecked his schedule yesterday; he came in from work and slept a few hours then got up so we could run errands, mostly his. It was 8pm'ish when we got back home and he fell in his bed and went unconscious as he put it. He slept all night, 12+ hours, so ended up waking up about 9 this morning.

I wanted to go to Lowe's today to look for some paintable wallpaper to put on the ceiling of my laundry room.
I call it my laundry room now, but it's also part pantry/food storage. Currently there's some black plastic shelving in there, but my intentions were to build in vintage-style cabinets/shelves reminiscent of an old general store.

I wanted to put something like vintage-style tin ceiling tiles on the ceiling, but they are ex.pen.sive.
They have a Mineral Fiber version that was cheaper, but still not cheap enough that I didn't have to plan and save, and hope we could hang the things without royally farking it up. So I hadn't bought them yet.

Then, recently, I forget where now (but probably Pinterest) I saw that there was a paintable wallpaper available that is textured with a pattern to look like ceiling tiles.
There's even Martha Stewart metallic paint named "Tin".

Create a Faux Tin Ceiling With Wallpaper
The rolls cost less than $20.00 ($18.something) and cover 56sq.ft. so I just need 2 rolls to cover my approx 120sq.ft. room (we rounded up). It's already pre-pasted so no extra cost there, I don't believe.
The paint looks to be about $45.00 a gallon, so, if this works out well, I'm hopefully looking at around $100.00 for a tin tile ceiling! 

That would be too sweet!

While I was there I grabbed several rolls of the paintable beadboard wallpaper, too. I can think of a million places I could use this in my house to cover our natty messed up old walls. That's projects for later, but I grabbed it while I was there. 

On the way to Lowe's, which is way out on the skirts of town, we stopped in at the Goodwill store and I found myself a cute brown striped hooded-shirt and a dress. 

After there we headed to Big Lots, and found a new place opened called "Bargain Hunt". It's like a Salvage store with crushed boxes or opened packaging or whatever other reasons retail stores salvage off merchandise. The items are still good, and the prices are marked ~somewhat~ down. 

Why it's called Bargain Hunt, I guess, is you have to "hunt" for the deal. You look for the Date on the price sticker, and if Today is 10 days past that date, take off 10%, if it's 20 days past take off 20%, and so on and so on. 
I really didn't like that, since me and Math aren't BFFs, but it ended up not mattering because everything I saw I wanted wasn't even 10 days past the date, so weren't discounted anyway. 

They had DVD movies for $1.00, so I picked up Pirates of the Caribbean part 2 & 3, National Treasure, and Gettysburg, and Ryan found a Robin Williams movie, One Hour Photo or something like that. 

At Big Lots I found K some wireless headphones and a laptop cooling fan that I'm going to wrap for Christmas. By the time Christmas comes, I won't have a clue what they are and will be as surprised as he is, LOL. 

I also found for myself a wireless keyboard and mouse. I needed a new keyboard, the letters are rubbed off this one, and I like not having to mess with wires. 

Then we stopped by Walmart for Halloween candy. Holy shoot, candy is expensive!  

On the way back home as we passed Ingles (grocery store) I saw they had 10lb bag of potatoes for $1.98. No way I could pass up that kind of a deal, so we went back and I got 5 bags. 
I peel and cut them up into fries or cubes, boil them a little bit, then freeze them in freezer bags. Then later I can just bake fries in the oven or fry the cubes into home fries or boil for potato salad or mashed potatoes. 

As we were checking out R got a phone call from his friend saying they had a possible woods fire, so R said we were coming. 
Turned out, someone set the City brush-pile on fire. When the City collects limbs, trimmed brush, broken trees, etc. from around the neighborhood they pile it up in an area out behind the old Mill pond to burn or chip up or whatever they do with it later. With the winds like they were today, today certainly wasn't a day for burning such a large pile.  
It was threatening to get into the woods, so they sprayed water on it until Forestry showed up to plow a break around it with the bulldozer. 

When we pulled up and R got out to bunker up, he told me I could go home and he'd get his friend to bring him home later. I just laughed and grabbed my camera and followed him around the whole time. 

He hates having his picture taken, but I call Mom Privileges in this case. I have no pictures of him doing his thing, and very few otherwise, training and such.  I may never get another opportunity so I had to get my fill today! (No, not because I'm afraid he'll get killed or anything! It's just really rare that they have a call while we're out together and/or in this area. Usually they have them when we're off in some other county or still in the middle of running our errands or something. Otherwise, I don't go on calls with him if he leaves from here.)

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Halloween Playlist 3

Here's a few more, and of course there's about a million more songs that are fun for playing on Halloween day, but they just really don't get me as excited as the older ones.
Except the Archies, I loved the Archies!

I had planned to do a lot more Halloween posts this month, songs and crafts and ideas and such, but I've been distracted by de-hoarding Toys again. One of my projects over the summer was cleaning out K's room, and his and R's closets were both storage facilities for a lot of their old board games and toys.

I got both closets completely cleaned out and started with trying to decide what to get rid of. At first, I only got rid of one thing!
Later I went back and was able to part with a lot more. I bought some rubber storage for storing things like Legos and Hot Wheels and smaller games, but I don't have storage bins big enough for the larger board games or some of the larger sized Toys I don't want to get rid of, either, so Idk what to do with them. If I put them in a cardboard box in the attic they'll get ruined.

  Sugar Sugar by The Archies

Werewolves of London by Warren Zevon

Spiders and Snakes by Jim Stafford

Witchy Woman by the Eagles

Saturday, October 06, 2012

Halloween Playlist 1

Feeling Halloween-y tonight and thought I'd share some of my Halloween Playlist.

All these songs are classics, that I remember from my childhood. I don't think any of them were intended as Halloween songs at the time they were released (but I could be wrong).

I remember running around at home singing these songs at the top of my lungs as a kid. Such fun songs!

(I use YTD (YouTubeDownloader) Video Downloader to download YT vids and convert to mp3, but I believe there's also an online option you can use without having to download or install anything. My internet is currently on the blink and I can't get to some sites, so I will research and update when I can.)

The Martian Hop by the Ran-Dells

Flying Purple People Eater by Sheb Wooley

Haunted House by Jumpin' Gene Simmons

Witch Doctor by David Seville

Love Potion #9 by The Searchers

Thursday, September 13, 2012

The Dresser Re-do

Remember the dresser I found for $7.99 at a Thrift Store a couple of months ago?

It looked great and was in great condition, all except for this water damage on top.

We sanded it all down, primered with Zinsser primer, and then I had to debate awhile on what color to paint it.

I already had a gallon of dark brown paint I had bought to paint the trim in the livingroom so I just used that.

Oops, I should have dusted it before taking the pic! But as you can see, the water damage is fixed.

I did end up taking some things out of our bedroom and putting it in here. Strangely, once we got it in here, it shrank in size by like half.  I'm thinking there was almost more room in the chiffarobe. (Which is now in the livingroom, sitting in front of the french doors to the diningroom.) Sigh.

Friday, September 07, 2012

Home Sweet Home

Even though I wasn't born or raised here, I've always felt like I was coming home whenever I visited my Dad's home place. 
I guess it could be the deep roots the family has planted here. I can look out the front (back) windows and see both the spot where my Great-Great Grandparents house was, and my Great-Grandparents house that is still there.

I would say maybe it's just that deep down, I'm a farm girl at heart. But whenever I say that, my City-girl psyche pees herself laughing at me.

I do have such wonderful memories of the summers I spent with my Great-Grands on their farm, though. Straight out of Little House on the Prarie stuff; milking the cow, feeding the chickens, gathering eggs, hoeing the garden, digging potatoes, snapping beans and shucking corn on the big wrap-around porch, canning in the kitchen, fishing in the pond, slopping the hogs, and so on.

After my Great-Grands passed away, and after my Grannie's husband retired, they built a house here on some of the land she inherited from her parents, I think. I need to write it down because I keep forgetting which is what. She also inherited some land from her Grandparents and/or Aunt. I believe it was her Aunt, who'd inherited from her parents (Grannie's Grandparents, my Great-Great Grandparents.) (Confusing!)

Anyway, she built it facing (back) towards her parents old farm place (which was inherited by her younger sister), her older brothers place, and her other inherited property. Not to mention a lot of cousins and other relatives. At one time, everyone in this area was family.

The big mountain with the two humps is known as Eagle Mountain. 
It's hard to see, but right above my great-uncle's old barn on the right side of the picture you can just see the porch roof and one dormer window of my Great-Grands old house.

When it would come thunderstorms at night, I would cry because I thought it was really boulders rolling off Eagle Mountain and they were going to smash the house.

If you look down from the top of the right-side hump, or wing, there's a "hill"...I've also forgotten it's name, but Grannie always called it "Bob's Mountain". My dad is Bob, he owns that hill up to where the Chattahoochee National Forest starts, plus the square of pasture behind those two houses in the pic. 
A road divides the property now, but some 50+ years ago the old road ran through the middle of the pasture, and that land my Dad owns was a whole parcel that was originally a part of (my Great-Great Grandparent's).

Other than the square that my Dad owns, the rest of the pasture and the barn used to belong to my Grannie's brother, my Great-Uncle. His old house is hidden in the stand of trees beside the barn.
When he died, he left his whole spread to a cousin, who ended up selling/losing all but the house and about an acre, if that much.
So, all that I'm overlooking - except my Dad's part - now belongs to strangers :(

I really would have preferred my part of the inheritance to be the property, but my sister didn't want Grannie's house, and I wasn't going to fight about it.
Anyway, I don't have much to complain about. It's a nice house.

I/we call this the front view, but in actuality, per the house plans, it's the rear of the house. The front door is on past the carport in the below picture. I don't reckon anyone has ever gone to the front door for admittance.  Mostly they go to the carport door, which is most accessible, or at least, the "back door" on the "back porch", which everyone thinks is the front.

This is coming up the driveway to the south side of the house. (Or right side, in the first picture.)
Dad built the little garage-barn. The side under the Coke sign is an auto-shop, then to the left of it he added on a wood-working shop. To the left of that (not pictured) is a camper garage.

There's another garage-shed on the yard, I can't describe where from here, lol.
Where he keeps his mower and tractor and who knows what other mechanical gadgets that I'll never be able to learn to ride/drive on my own.

Down beside it is his fruit orchard, which I have got to learn to take care of.
I just barely know how to vegetable garden after 4 or 5 years of trying...I know less than nothing about fruit farming.
There's Peach, Plum, Cherry, Apple, Apricot, and Pear trees, Blueberries, Blackberries, and Muscadines and Grapes. I think that's all.
Except bears. Yes, real bears. Apparently bears like pears, lol.

This was my view of Bell Mountain when I was standing in the Orchard this evening. The sun kind of washed everything out, but it was a lovely view with the mountain, the old farm house, and the horse in the pasture.

Except that horse nearly scared the peep out of me earlier in the day.
Earlier I was out exploring around in the Orchard, and I was scared of running across a snake. I picked up some limbs/sticks and was carrying them to the brush pile, when one of the horses, which was up closer to the house then, started walking.  I knew the horses were there, but I was concentrating so hard on seeing a snake, when I heard the horse moving I thought something was after me!

Way back when my Great-Uncle owned the pasture out front and Grannie owned this land, she actually owned some of the pasture, but they didn't see the need to fence her part off, when my Great-Uncle could use it for his cows, and at one time, growing hay.

But now that the cousin sold it all off to strangers, Dad recently went and fenced his/our part off, so I would know what was mine, and also giving him/us two little pastures to do something with if he/we wanted to.

I wonder if I could put a hog pen and raise a pig or two in this one? They're pretty nasty, I know, but I loooove bacon. And ham. And bacon, and pork roast, and bacon, and pork chops, and did I say bacon?

I could see a little red barn with a milk cow and some chickens in this one.
(And barn cats, because I'm terrified of snakes, and snakes looove chicken eggs.)

Old Mel-iss-a had a farm, ee-yi-ee-yi-ohh!

Here I Go

You know when you first find out your husband is "talking" to another woman behind your back, you feel a lot of anger and hatred. Like your love and marriage was murdered, never to be revived.

But being married and loving someone for 23 years is a hard habit to break.
Or well, at least it is for the one of us that actually loved the other, rather than just our own self.

When I say he's self-absorbed, I don't think anyone can truly understand how extremely self-centered he really is.  Even I still have a hard time comprehending it, and I've lived with it a long dang time.

Apparently, he feels like he's the one being wronged here. That he didn't do anything wrong? Or that maybe he did, but since he had been going to let me read the messages, and that (he claims) he wasn't hiding anything, then I have no right being mad about it.

Even though I said, and really felt like at the time, that my marriage was over, 23 years is hard to just wave off.  For me, at least.

Apparently it's of no consequence to him. Que sera, sera, bitch. 

Oh, I'm sure if I apologized and made nice, he'd forgive me and we'd go on as usual.
Or, well, maybe not at this point.

This is what's confusing me. I can't figure out what's going on.
I do know for certain he's an affection leech. He needs someone to care about him. More than one someones apparently. But at least some one.

So I really feel like for him to be able to blow our marriage off so easily, he must have another affection source to suck the life out of waiting in the wings.

But if so, who?
He said he de-friended the Other Woman the night I caught him chatting with her and hasn't talked to her since. From what I can tell periodically checking his FB messages, texts, and our cell phone bill, this is true.
He has a new email address at the ambulance service I can't get in to, but I can't imagine them only limiting their cyber-romance to email and nothing else.
(They could possibly talking/texting by cellphone, if she's using a different number than she put in her message.)

Otherwise, his boss at the ambulance service whom he has a big crush on is, I believe, happily married, and to a better man. I think she's got enough sense to realize J would be a terrible choice to leave her husband for.
I could be wrong, though. But the FB messages and texts I read between them were mostly innocuous.

None of the other FB messages I read with other females were in any way alarming, either. Just friendly.

So then I'm thinking, okay, there's not another woman, he just feels like he's the one being wronged, because in his mind, he hasn't done anything for me to be so mad about.

Still trying to find out what's going on, yesterday I try to go in to his FB account to find out he'd signed out and the password was different from what it used to be.
Why would he do that?
Later yesterday evening I tried again, and he'd left it signed in, but had deleted all his messages.

Well, all the messages that weren't in the Archive. That's the reason I don't think he knows there is an Archive.

Anyway, I've already read the messages that were there, why delete them now, unless there was something new, that I hadn't seen yet, that needed deleting?

This whole thing has me a complete mess. Half the time I don't care if he is seeing someone else behind my back - good riddance. The rest of the time I'm suspicious and sneaking around looking for evidence and hurt and upset that he's not even trying to fix this mess that he caused.

Half the time I'm listing off the reasons that I'm glad to be rid of him - he never was much of a prize anyhow - but then the rest of the time I'm pissed off because I invested a lot of years in him and us, and this should have been our time. The best time of our lives. I had a lot of plans for us, eventually retiring to the mountains and Florida to spend our olden years.

I was such a mess yesterday, when I saw on the calendar he's not working and will be home tomorrow and Saturday, I decided I couldn't deal with it. I have to get out of here.

I packed a big load, several rubbermaid tubs of things like my Photos, Scrapbook things, kids' memory stuff that I'd planned to eventually start relocating to my parents place in the mountains anyway. My parents spend most of their time in Florida now, and the place in the mountains is part of my eventual inheritance, so me and J had always planned on moving on up there as soon as feasible. The plan had been for him to retire early at about 55 years old, which is only like 9 years away.

Now I'm starting the move up there early, and without him.
I'm afraid it's going to dawn on him what he's screwed up and done. He threw away a lot more than just me.
Then the begging and crying will start, and I'll never be able to believe it wasn't only for selfish reasons.

Because it's common knowledge he's done with working now. He's ready to retire now, and spend every day hunting and fishing. He loves the mountains and it's always been his dream to be able to live up there full time.

Dream on, asshole. 

Yes, as a matter of fact, he has always been that stupid.  It didn't matter at first, he had me to help him, and I knew every.freaking.thing.
Along the way I learned that I didn't know anything. But he never learned that about himself. He still thinks he's intelligent and knows what he's doing and makes good choices - they just always turn out wrong for some reason that is someone or something else's fault.

I am really lucky to be getting shed of him. Really lucky.
I just don't know why, even knowing that, it still hurts my feelings.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Nothing's Changed

Well, not really. Except maybe he's even more crazy/delusional than I thought.

Anyway, I just put those posts away so I didn't have to look at them constantly. I can still link to them if/when needed.

When everything went down last Monday, and I went off like Mount St. Helen's, he told me he "was done".
I quit talking to him, he quit talking to me, we avoided being in the same room with each other, didn't so much as look at the other.

The day before yesterday he was at the firehouse, and then the schedule said he was supposed to be on the ambulance yesterday, the clinic today, and the firehouse again tomorrow.
He texted R and said when he left the clinic, he was probably just going to spend the night at the firehouse.

Turned out he had gotten his days mixed up and wasn't scheduled to be on the ambulance yesterday after all, so he came home.

Started out the same as every other day over the past week and a half: neither of us acknowledged the other, and he went off into the livingroom to sit in the recliner and get on his laptop.

At one point I laid down on the bed for a nap (I'm not sleeping well at night), I was also coughing a little bit. Me and R both feel like we're getting a chest cold or something.  Anyway he came in here and put his hand on my hip and asked if I was sick.
I froze him out until he left the room with a huff.

He went back to the livingroom, and deactivated his Facebook account.

Later me and R went to the grocery store, where I bought about 5 family packages of chicken on sale.
I brought them in and started dividing them up into dinner size portions, putting them in freezer bags.
Out of the blue, J came in there and helped me with it.

I didn't tell him to eff off, but continued ignoring him, like he wasn't even there.

Later, while I fixed dinner, he hung around in the kitchen and cleaned off and straightened up his messy counter without me having to say anything about it.

Later, I was laying on the bed watching TLC and he comes in there and lays down on his side of the bed and watches tv with me. (I was watching stupid shows, and shows he don't like, flipping between HGTV and Toddlers & Tiaras. So obviously he wasn't there for the entertainment.)

He reached forward and touched my foot...I don't know what he was doing, I jerked it away and froze him out again.

But then a few minutes later he leans over near my back, like he's going to whisper in my ear or something.
I was like, What the hell are you doing? Get away from me!
He didn't, so I asked, "Don't you have a sky to look at and a whore to think about?"

He backed off then, but said, "I don't know what you're talking about."

That's the kind of crap he says that pisses me off ridiculously. SOB trying to make it out like I'm just making stuff up, twisting what he said.

But I didn't want the cops to show up at the door again, so I managed to refrain from saying anything else.

Then he said, "Well, I do, but I don't"..or maybe it was, "I don't, but I do". I can't exactly remember now.

I don't know what he meant by it, and I was afraid to ask, pretty sure his answer (excuses/lies) would infuriate me beyond limits.
But I have an idea that he's attempting to make an arguement for it being something from a long time ago, that I'm still just holding against him after all this time.

I was having a little chat with R the other day, trying to explain to him what had happened, and ease him into the idea that I'm leaving as soon as I can. He told me that when he asked his Dad what happened, he told him that I got mad for something he said to someone a long time ago.

Since July wasn't that long ago, less than a month at that time, it didn't make a lot of sense.
Thinking about it, though, I'm thinking he's going to try arguing that he was saying that was how he felt back then, but does not now.
Therefore, it's just me "taking things out of context", because, you know, I'm just "always looking for something to accuse him of" doing, because "the way I see it" he's guilty.

Only a couple things wrong with his logic, one being his use of word tense.
He said "I sit and look at the sky and wonder if you are as well."
Not, "I used to sit and look at the sky and wonder..."

But the most fatal flaw in his logic, the one that tore me so completely out of the frame, was that, back then, when he'd told me he'd been having an affair, he said it didn't mean anything. It was just sex. That he didn't care about her.
He quit his job to get away from her.
I didn't make him quit his job to get away from her. I didn't even know what was going on until it was already done.

So I spent all these years thinking it was just sex, and that I was still the only one he ever really loved, despite his tail-chasing.

Now, to find out they "had something special", "did a lot together", "shared a lot"...and that he still thinks so, and still thinks about her...

How he can have the balls to face me... to act like he's the wronged, innocent party here.... to make it seem like I'm some kind of deranged, jealous bitch....


I didn't ask what he meant by what he said, and continued to watch tv and ignoring him.

Then he jerked up off the bed, huffing "Oh, but I forgot. You don't give a shit about me anymore."

I'm serious! I couldn't make this kind of thing up!

The man is honest-to-goodness, completely deranged.

He went back to the livingroom, and re-activated his FB account.

I don't know what his thoughts were when he decided to deactivate his account.
I figured he blamed FB for his misdeeds. If I make him guilty, I'm sure FB made him talk with people he ought not have been talking to.

Or maybe he knew he was too weak of character to resist temptation, and thought deactivating it would save him from doing wrong again.
Nahh, that wouldn't be it. He's just fine with his character. He doesn't think he did anything wrong anyway.

Or, if he doesn't have a FB account, then there wouldn't be anything for me to "accuse" him of doing, nothing for me to "take out of context".

Apparently he thought it was in some way a good will gesture on his part, to help me be able to get back in his good graces yesterday.

I don't know. I think he's demented.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Drop Cloth Curtains

According my Stats, I get a lot of hits on the Drop Cloth Curtains post, which, of course, was a Project Fail.  My drop cloth panels were too short.

At the time, I hadn't gotten my sewing machine back out yet, and after over a dozen years of having not sewed anything with it, I wasn't/still am not really confidant in my ability to sew any kind of length onto the drop cloths to make them the right length. Nor did I have a clue what color material would match the weird color they'd turned out from half a dye job.

I considered dying them again to see if I could get the darker brown color I had been going for to start with, but there was still the problem of the panels being too short, so seemed like a waste of money. (The RIT dye is around $6.00 a bottle.)

So, while I meditated on the problem, I got my sewing machine out, cleaned it up, and attempted to brush up on my sewing skills by making a t-shirt blankett-shirt blanket. (Oh yay, a post full of Project Fails today.)

Anyway, the point of mentioning that being, once I figured out to use the iron-on Fusible Webbing, the project started going along better.
(Even though I'm still too scared to cut up my other t-shirts yet.)

Along about this time, I came across a Pin on Pinterest, where a lady was wanting to change the look of her plain cream-colored curtain panels, without permanently altering them. So she cut strips of (black) fabric and used Fusible Webbing to attach them to the panels.
She also used Fusible Webbing to attach (black) ribbon over the rough edges of the (black) material.

It occurred to me that I could add big stripes of material to my drop cloth panels, with one at the bottom and/or top to extend the length of mine. Easy, no sewing involved, and it wouldn't look like a drop cloth with a piece of material sewed to the bottom.

I had plans to try this new project and post how it went, if was easy, if it was a success (or not).
But things are not going my way this summer, and it's not really looking good for this project to ever get done, so I thought I'd go ahead and post the idea for any of the visitors landing here looking for ideas about this.

BTW, you can also use printed oblong tablecloths the same way in place of curtain panels.

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Plant Day Part Deux

I couldn't do this little project earlier because, all the crap I have in my house, I didn't have sponges.

So the truck battery died, so R was taking it to the auto parts place to get it tested, and it's in the same parking lot as the Dollar Tree, so while he was going anyway I rode along and got some sponges (and, yes, some other things: a new cookie sheet b/c my other one got rust, and some paint mini-roller-naps and brushes. They didn't have the mini-naps when I was looking for them before so I figured I'd better go ahead and get some while they had them.)

(We went to Walmart first - they like to get more than one opinion on auto stuff - and as far as sponges, they didn't have any cheap, generic kitchen sponges. Only name brand, or scrubbers, and all cost nearly $3.00 and up.)

The original plan calls for (4) sponges in four different colors, but blue and yellow is what Dollar Tree had, so that's what color mine is.

It also called for a large plastic food-storage container, which I do have one of, but for some crazy reason the top is missing. So, I used a cake container.

Cut up the sponges according to the directions.

Spray surfaces with water.

Sprinkle on grass seed.
This was the hardest part. The first time I did it, grass seed went everywhere! I had to disassemble and gather all the seed and start over. I left the roof off first and sprinkled seed on the "hedges" on the sides, holding the seed close to the target so it wouldn't bounce off.
The roof was harder on account of the slopes. I still got some loose seed on the tray, but oh well, if it sprouts I can pick it out.
Spray with water again - not too close, or you'll spray your seeds off.

Cover, but don't seal closed to prevent to mold. Keep warm and moist and hopefully we'll have sprouting in a week or two.

When I originally saw the idea to do this grass house, I wanted to make it for Kitty. Kitty lives inside, but apparently sometimes cats need to eat grass, Idk. We tried to grow a tray of grass earlier in the Spring, but it didn't do too well.
Anyway, this sponge house is just propped together, not really sturdy, so I don't think it would hold up to Kitty farming from it.

Plant Day

was actually supposed to be yesterday, until I went to visit our compost bins looking for potting soil. Without throwing a big, huge rant, I'll just say, they weren't good.
I got the boys out there and we shoveled (and pulled plastic bags out) and watered. Hopefully we can get them back on track again.

The main thing I wanted to do was start sprouting some Cabbage seeds. I want to try to raise Cabbage again this (Fall) - last year I think we planted too late, after Harvest of the Spring/Summer garden. I read yesterday that I should have already been sprouting these in mid-late July and planting in late August.

I tried making a mini greenhouse out of 2-ltr plastic bottles, and that didn't work out at all. So I just put some garden soil in one of these plastic plant trays and dropped in the seeds, watered and covered with plastic wrap. Hopefully they'll sprout pretty quickly.

Otherwise, my Aloe plant had some "pups" that needed to get out on their own.

This Aloe plant is actually a child of an Aloe plant my DIL gave me a couple of years ago. When they grow "pups", alls you do is pluck them out and stick in dirt in another pot. I can't remember how many "pups" I harvested last year, more than 20, IIRC.  I took them to my Mom's at Thanksgiving and gave everyone a plant (or several).

Today I got 6 "pups" relocated to their own homes. There are still 4-5 more with the "Mom" that I think need to grow a little more before I pluck them out. One of the ones I replanted today was really small, but it had pulled loose when I pulled one of the bigger "pups" out, so I didn't want to waste it.

Back in May, I had cut some pink miniature roses from the ancient cemetery across the road to attempt to propagate. I read online where some people just stuck theirs into the ground and left them alone, others stuck them into the ground and covered with a glass mason jar.

I stuck mine into dirt in a pot, and hope that's close enough. I don't expect to see results until next Spring, but I think it might be a good sign that both the stems (stalks?) of the rose clippings are still green, and I don't know if you can see it in this picture, but there are some green leaves growing up out of the soil from the uncovered rose.

I also wanted to try growing one like my Grannie used to do it, which she did nothing more than clip a flower and stick it in a glass/jar of water.
I stuck it in the water and more or less forgot about it. I mean, I could see it sitting there, and considered a couple of times maybe I should change the water, but usually lost interest before I got around to it. I did add some water once when it got low, but that was it.

Despite my kind of care, it sprouted some mighty fine roots.

I went ahead and planted it in a pot of soil.

The real test will be if I can keep them alive through the winter.  Plants and gardening aren't a whole lot on my mind when it's cold and nasty outside.

I also replanted my Rosemary plant into a larger pot. I know some plants grow by the size of the pot they're in, how much room they have, or something like that.  It didn't seem to have grown any since I bought it, so I thought I'd try a bigger pot and see if that's what it needs.

I still find it kinda amazing that I've been able to work with plants.  I used to have such a black-thumb, plants would see me coming and go ahead and die to save us both the trouble.
I'll never be a Master Gardener, or anything even near, but this little bit I've been able to do is such an accomplishment for me.
Especially keeping that Aloe plant alive. I mean, I killed a Cactus and Air Plant. No joke, I did. An Air Plant. You know what an Air Plant needs? Air. Yeah. So I have no idea how I managed that one.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Can I Just Say,

I was pretty disgusted when I cleaned out the storage room and found the ridiculous amount of Dollar Tree items I had bought and put away for "later".  By the time "later" came around, I didn't want the stuff anymore.

I remember when Dollar Tree opened and it was such a novelty, and all the neat toys and home decor and kitchenwares and everything was just.a.dollar!
If I had all those just a dollar's back, I think we'd be rich.

I was sickened when I realized the amount of toys around here. Because I rarely got rid of any of their toys, I'm confronted with the years and years of ridiculousness. Not the ridiculousness of me saving everything, which was pretty ridiculous, but how much there was to save.
Everytime we went to the store they had to have something. Birthdays, Easter, and Christmas were always big Toy events.
What the hell was I thinking?

But I am straight up horrified by my Beanie Baby and Pez collections.
I knew I had a good bit of a collection, but in reality I had no idea of the true extent of it.

No wonder J isn't able to drive around in a brand new truck with upgrades even though he works three jobs.

Ughhhh. I'm so sick of myself.

Well. The good news is, they are in plastic tubs and stored - hopefully safely - out of the way in the attic.
And maybe one day their value will come back, since - sadly - that is about the extent of our kids' inheritance.

Thursday, July 26, 2012


or Torture?
So as some of you know, I have a bit of a hoarding problem that I've been working on. The other night, during one of the periods the internet was down and I didn't feel like reading (!) I turned on the tv and - yay - found Hoarding: Buried Alive was on.  That show gives me hope, lights a fire under my fanny.

The past few days I've been walking around here at loose ends. I want to do something, but just don't really know where to start.
Eventually I decided a good place to start would be to work on my Collections. It's a long story, but basically I have several Collections of Stuff that I can't (won't, same difference) get rid of.
My Collections take up a lot of room around here, so I decided the best place for them would be in the attic.

We have a Hip roof, with a large gas furnace right in the center, so our attic doesn't have a whole lot of storage room. And, the last time I stored some things up there, squirrels got in and chewed and poo'ed and messed stuff up. But, I had that stuff stored in cardboard boxes and plastic bags. It occurred to me if I store stuff up there in plastic storage containers, maybe they'd be safe against pesky intruders.

I have several of the plastic storage containers around here, just filled with other stuff, so first I had to sort through some of those.

There were four of them upstairs that I knew were filled with "Memories": old t-shirts, school papers, vacation souvineers, personalized doo-dads, and so on and so on.

One of things I kept was the boys' old ball caps, mostly from their Little League years. There was a couple of caps that were Ryan's because he was more of a cap wearer (like his Dad) when he was little. But he's not sentimentally attached to his old caps, especially the baseball ones, because they never were that interested in baseball and only played because I encouraged it.
So, no problem, I think, I can get rid of the ball caps without remorse.

But then I see these. Personalized. My kid's names.
Ok, I tell myself. That's ok. There's other boys out there named Kevin and Ryan that would probably enjoy having a cap with their name on it. It'll be ok.

Then I see these! Our family name!

Then I found this Frog costume that my sister made for Kevin about a million years ago.
Had it been anything but a frog, I think I would be okay with it, even though she made it, but frogs are, like, our thing. (Croaker - frog - get it?)

Then I found Ryan's old "Goin' to Grandma's" bag. This came after he got too old for a diaper bag, but still had stuff to carry: drink box, snacks, clean outfit, small toys, paper and crayons. He carried that thing all.the.time. 
Then there's the bag he made at one of his Vacation Bible Schools. I keep thinking I'm not that sentimentally attached to it, but then I'll see his name wrote inside, or I'll think, but that's still a good, useful bag, I could use it for something, and it was his.

Then I came across a bag of my kids' old (like nearly 30 years old) baby blankets and crib sheets.
Sweet as they are, I decided any DILs I ever have will probably want New stuff, in whatever Matching Set they choose, and not my old, used, mis-matched stuff, so I might as well give to someone who might could use it, right.
I no sooner thought it, that the very next things I came across included MY pink baby blanket. And it is precious to me, and I'm glad to have it, and here I am standing there contemplating getting rid of my kid's baby blankets!

So, yeah, I'm having a pretty hard time with dealing with this this un-Hoarding thing.

You know what doesn't help at.all? J looking in the box of stuff I was able to get rid of and start asking "Why you gettin' rid of this?", or saying "I wanna keep that".
I was like, "I WANT TO KEEP ALL OF IT!!!!! BUT I CAN'T, CAN I??????"

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


is the reason I can't get 95% of the stuff I want to do done.

J and R primering the dresser I bought for $8 bucks at a thrift store with Zinsser primer. Thing is, I still can't decide what color I want to paint it.

I also can't decide if I want to keep it, or sell it.  Me & J could really use a dresser. All we have is an antique chiffarobe with a small closet and 4 really small drawers, but we don't have room in our bedroom for a dresser.  Both of the boys already have dressers so they don't need one. So it seems like the most logical thing would be to sell it.  But me & J could really use a dresser, and I only paid $8 for this one...
But I have no place to put it.

But I would have a place to put it if I could get rid of some of (a lot of)(most of) the junk around here.
I just can't decide what to do with it.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Homemade Poptarts

Today I decided to try making some Homemade Poptarts.
I've seen a few Pins on Pinterest, and checked them out, and basically, they were recipes for making crust, with some jelly/jam for filling.

Well, I had crust, and some homemade Peach jam my Mom made. I don't think it can get much easier than this.

The filling recipe calls for mixing the jam with some cornstarch and water, but I didn't have any cornstarch, so I googled "cornstarch substitute" and discovered I could use twice the amount of all-purpose flour instead.

I halved the recipe from the internet, so I used about 1/3 cup of jam, 1 Tbsp all-purpose flour and 1 Tsp. water. Mixed it all and put it in a pan and brought it to a boil for a minute or so.

I rolled the crust out by folding wax paper in half over it, then cut into retangles -ish.

The recipe calls for brushing an egg/milk wash on the bottom crust before putting on the filling. I don't know why you do that. (I'm out of eggs, so I used some egg substitute.) (I don't have a cooking brush, either, so I spread with the back of a spoon.)

Spoon on the filling and spread around to about a quarter inch from the edges, then put the top crust on and seal the edges with a fork. You can poke vent holes with a fork or a toothpick.

In some of them I used chocolate chips for the filling.

To make a glaze frosting, mix confectioners sugar and milk. (I used 1/2 c.sugar and 1 Tbsp milk.)

Bake at 350* for about 15-20 minutes until golden. Let cool on racks for awhile, then brush on the sugar glaze.

The boys said they were good, especially the chocolate ones, haha.