Monday, December 30, 2013

Happy New Year! And Happy Reflecting on all the Years Past.

The excitement of Christmas is past, to me it's always so funny how even the lights on the trees and houses seem to lose that magical glow. Oh they still look pretty, but it's like the spirit of Santa has returned back to the North Pole, leaving us in the afterglow. But a bit of spark is left to get us through the week, just enough to rally for the last fling, The New Year Celebration! Mom and Dad always had a great New Years Eve party, fabulous food, fun guests, Dad tending bar, making me my favorite White Russians! The neighbor down the street , Mr Luke, would always bring a big bag of fireworks to set off in the front yard at the stroke of Midnight. Bottle Rockets galore, Lady Fingers going off like machine guns, Huge Fountains shooting a mountain of sparks that would make a loud whistle, small Tanks that would run in the street that shot little sparks out of their canons.But my fave was the Roman Candles. Oh man getting to hold that wand, shooting out bright balls of sparkling fire in the night, seeing the colors shoot out, winging their way down the street in a high arch, now that's what I'm talk'n about!! Makes my heart leap just thinking about it! Thanks Mom and Dad, that is a memory that will never be repeated.

It has been some years since we went out to celebrate New Years, usually it's a quiet evening, grilling in the back yard, now Wayne makes my White Russians, he'll put a fire in the fire pit.  I love to watch the ball drop in Times Square on the telly and we toast at Midnight, usually with Evan Williams Eggnog, another favorite! I don't see any change this year, but maybe we'll use our gift card from Carrabba's for dinner that we got LAST YEAR!! it still even good?? Well anyhoo.
I usually don't make any resolutions, I always hope things will be better, that we will have good health, that I will be more productive, that some fun will enter my life everyday, that I'll find something to really laugh about, that I will watch my diet, prosperity will come our way, maybe I'll get a new kitten, maybe not, that I will clean the garage, pressure wash the driveway, reline the kitchen drawers..hey! hey! what in the hell am I talking about?? Wow I must of had a moment! whew..
Happy New Year! Holy Cow it's 2014!!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

I Hate Change! But I do Love Me some Christmas!

I hate when things in life forces change on you, but this has been the year that has probably changed mine forever. Families grow up, move on, grow not apart, but away from each other. It's like the saying
"Life Gets In The Way". Each one has their own agenda, their own needs. Oh yeah we all try and make time for each other, but there seems to be less and less to talk about, all are so out of each others loop, that the conversation comes basically down to the weather, what you made for dinner or what they are all planning to do, and it has nothing to do with You. Now I am not crying in my soup here, I am just stating a fact that is true, in all of our growing families.They say if you Love Them Let Them Go, but.... This is the same with Friends, even ones that have been in your life for more years than you can put a number on. It can only take one thing to change the whole dynamics of your relationships. So you start to wonder about the meaning of it all. Families grow up and out, Friends let you drift away, it just seems to be a fate we just can't get a grip on.

It was with the Saddest, did I say Saddest? thing to do, but we had to call off our (My) Christmas Party. This would have been the 13th Annual. Such a wonderful gathering of Friends and Family, so much fun, all the food, laughter, the beautiful decorations I put up in my home for all to enjoy, right down to the 99 Bananas Shooters, right before I gave all the women bags of Christmas or Hanukkah Ornaments. This was always my gift to all that mattered to me in my life, I would forgo everything just to have this party, this was My Christmas.

Well at first I thought that I wouldn't put up any decorations this year, but as the days got closer to Christmas, I knew I would have to feed my Heart. I got a skinny little tree at KMart, just big enough to fit in a small space in my family room. I didn't even have to bring out any of my collection of ornaments that always went on the big tree in the living room, I just used what was in the basket from last years party. All would bring me an ornament, so I used those. I missed going through all my own old ones that have  been with me since I was 22 years old, the ones that my  Daughter would pick out every year, from the age of one, then the ones the Grandkids would make, the ones from my Mom, and ones that I just couldn't resist buying. That is 45 years of collecting!! Acckk! Wow time does fly! I've done only about a third of the usual decorating, but things have remained festive, and I am glad I made the attempt.

As usual I started with my Mantel, you do know I have a Mantel Fetish! You can see all my Mantels on Pinterest under Rena Designs. But it is a scaled back version, but I did not sacrifice beauty! LOL

Went to Lowes and Home Depot to get all the free tree trimmings and used them on the Mantel with Deco Mesh, Glitter Poinsettias, Red and Gold Ornaments, Beaded Garland, Lighted Topiary I got a Goodwill last year, and a Red Glitter Reindeer as the finishing touch. Not as Deluxe, but nice.

Top of Kitchen Cabinets got a change up too, just enough to satisfy my judgmental eye.

Kitchen is painted Terracotta so all my decor is Glitter Copper! I'm covered in it!!

Added the Christmas Tree in the Family Room.

Loaded up the tree with the Red Berry branches I usually put on my Mantel, added a Deco Mesh topper, Red Ribbon Garland and all the ornaments from friends. I love how you can see the Mantel in the Mirror. Oh my goodness that Mirror! When we lived at the condo I saw that Mirror at an Antique store for $350! I wanted it for my Kitchen, but was not going to pay that amount!! Just weeks later I went to a garage sale and yep there is was, side keys and all for...wait for it...$3.00! OMG MINE MINE MINE! lol

I decorated the Large Mirror in my Living room, added the Glitter Peacock with feathers, long glass ornaments, and the Mask I got in Venice 5 years ago. Ahhh Venice...ok ok I'm back!

 I am Truly Wishing You All from My Heart, a Beautiful Christmas Filled with Love..

Thought I would include a Recipe that I would make every year for the Christmas party. It's a good one, so hope you enjoy!

                                                  Beef and Broccoli Wellington 

1 lb. ground beef
9 oz. cut broccoli thawed /drained/ cut in to small pieces
2 cups mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup med chopped onion
1 jar of sliced mushrooms
1 8oz. sour cream (plus extra container to be used when serving)
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 8oz cans Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
(or now that they have out the solid sheets
you could probably use those.)
1 egg beaten

preheat oven 375 degrees

In large skillet brown meat and onion/ drain off fat
Add broccoli, mushrooms,cheese, sour cream, salt
 and pepper. turn down heat and mix all well, let simmer
for about 10 min.
While skillet is cooling off, separate dough into 4 long
rectangles. On an ungreased cookie sheet place 2 rectangles,
overlap the long edges by about 1/2 inch. press perforations
to seal into one large sheet. about 13 x 7 inches. spoon meat mixture
in about a 3 inch strip down the center of the dough. bring long
sides up to the top and pinch to seal all along the long length.
Repeat with second tube of dough, same thing. Take the beaten
egg and brush, using as a wash all over both Wellingtons.
Bake for 18-22 minutes till deep golden brown.
Serve slices with a dollop of Sour Cream on top.

This makes two Wellingtons. 

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

It's Fall Y'all!

Well hang on folks, the Holidays are on their way! All of a sudden it's like the Bullet Train, Halloween bam! Thanksgiving bam! Christmas bam! Wasn't this an early start?? I mean with all the postings on Facebook, Pinterest and other Bloggers all putting the pictures out there, it's hard not to get caught up in the whirlwind! I just started this week getting all the Fall and Halloween decor out, I don't have kids at home anymore, and  with the g-kids now in their late teens, I still  like to have a few of my spooky things sprinkled around the house.When I think of Fall I automatically have the colors of the season running through my head, golds, browns, oranges and terracottas, sage greens and burgundy, so with that being said, what is the deal with all the white pumpkins?? It all looks so sad in the homes, I mean a display with them added is fine, but to go all white? It just negates all the things fall has meant to me, where's the warm colors? Well I'll tell you where there at, right here at Renas! Oh yeah baby, I've gone Fall Color Crazy! LOL

My Halloween Mantel 2013, I morphed 2011 and 2012 Mantels and this is what I came up with. Well I just didn't want to have to buy anything new, so I just recycled! Well I did add the birds nest I found on the front walkway after a storm, and my little terracotta pumpkin that I've had for so long. The Bike Rider is a sculpture that I found years ago at Goodwill.

I think my Moss Angel is keeping the Witch in check!

I've had the pumpkin candles for about 20 years! Love my Raven with the bird nest.

Dining Room is all ready for Fall too, gave my Egret a new fall Do, and added a small table scape at the end of the Dinning table.
After Halloween I will take away all the Spooky stuff and add my Thanksgiving accoutrements!
Isn't this just the best time of the year, cooler temps make it such a great transition in to all the Holidays, with Halloween just about here, I've gotta get some Candy!  Have Fun!,  Trick or Treat Y'all!

Monday, August 19, 2013

An Old Passion Making a Comeback!

Do you sew? I do. Not so much clothes anymore, but I do love adding a pillow project, or make a quick handbag. I used to make all the Halloween costumes for my Daughter and then for my Grandkids, such fun! And all the cute little sundresses, shorts, and jammie pants, so many memories of when my Daughter and G-kids were small, wow it all went by so fast. But have you noticed all the new sewing sites that have popped up lately, and especially on Pinterest. Love to see the younger generation getting into this "New" fad! LOL And the knitting and Crochet sites too, all the new ideas are just wonderful! You know my Dad was a Tailor in the Navy for a time, making the uniforms on the ship, which led him to make things for me. There were three things that I remember him making, My Angel costume for the School play, (when there could be angels in school plays) and a green skirt for another school play that we danced the Virginia Reel , and then the most beautiful Grey Wool Box Pleated skirt that was so full, I loved twirling in it. It was just something so wonderful. When I went to graduate from High School, I needed a half a credit, so my counselor said I could take Home Ec! Ahh the begining! Home Ec was split into three sessions, the first was sewing, the second was cooking, and the third was decorating. Do they even have this in schools anymore? Probably not. Well the sewing class began with two projects, we had to make an apron with the front bib, and then we were going to learn to make a simple A-line dress, sleeveless. I guess it was in the Genes I inherited from my Dad, but man I caught on to this sewing thing so fast, I was done with my apron and the teacher said for me to go around and help the others. When it came time to make the dress, I asked the teacher if I could choose a more complicated pattern, one that was fitted with long sleeves and ruffles, my reason was I was a Senior and would not get another chance at this.She agreed and at the end of the sewing session we had a fashion show and I won top honors and my picture in the local paper! Fun!

Yep that is me at 18 years Class of '65', I chose white with navy polka dots, a ruffle at the neck and sleeve. I used the same pattern for my Graduation dress, in white with a plain neck line.

Oh yeah I was bitten by the Sewing Bug!
After High School we moved to Florida and I started working at Sears part time, as I rode the bus everyday to work, the drop off point was in front of a beautiful shoe store called LaRose Footwear. I would look in the window everyday, wishing... his shoes were so expensive. One day Mr LaRose came outside to talk with me and invited me in the store to try on a special pair he had selected just for me! Well I could not afford them of course, he said that he had never extended credit to a teen before, but if I came by every Friday to make payments, he would let me take the shoes!! I came by every Friday like clock work, Mr LaRose and I became such good friends along with his wife Trudy, he said if you ever need work Rena you are welcome here. Come to find out after Christmas Sears laid off all part time help for a month, well not being able to be without a pay check for a month, I went to Mr. LaRose and asked for a job. That is when I started Modeling shoes for LaRose. I was a Model for him for two and a half years. The most wonderful job ever. My sewing continued all along, and when it came time to go the Midshipmans Ball, I designed my own formal dress. Back in the mid sixties you had to be invited to this formal affair. The LaRose's had submitted my name.  For my formal I chose a material that was shimmery gold and pink, with a pink organza overlay I added pink Ostrich feathers around the neckline.It turned out fantastic!

This is a picture of the dress taken at a USO Valentine Dance, I was 19.
Sewing has been such a fun part of my life, I never look at a pattern for what it is, I always see it the way I design it in my mind. Here are two more looks that I've made, One a jumpsuit ( I still have the bracelet), and a A-line dress with a bow. I used to love to sew with Kettle cloth or Voile.

Sorry for the blur, had to take pictures of old photos.

When it came time for me the Marry, I made my own Wedding Dress from a Vogue pattern, I was 22. The dress was of a fabric called Candlelight, it had a slight shimmer, the front of the boatneck dress had a cotton lace panel that ran down the front, wide at the shoulders and narrow at the hem. The Train was made of the same heavy cotton lace, in the shape of a bow. A little pearl crown that I gathered tulle on to form my veil.

I have tons of projects to show, but these are pictures of the "Beginning"
I often think of my Home Ec classes, it was such an influence on my life. If I'd only known I would have loved it all so much, the sewing, the cooking, the decorating, I would have started taking it in my Sophomore year! I say that because the Senior girls that had done this all along, were learning to make Mens Suits!! Holy Cow!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Summer Summer Summer!

Judging by the heat and humidity (humiture as the weathermen call it) we are in the early throws of Summer! We have already had so much rain, that now with the heat, it's like a sauna when we walk outside. But here at the Beach, we are so lucky to have a sea breeze! Our saving grace! My yard is in such a state of Blah, I mean the plants are doing well, but there are no flowers, I only have three things blooming at this time, Canna Lilies, Alamanda and Princes plants. Some of the Crepe Myrtles have started to show, but the huge tree on the corner of the yard, has not opened yet, oh my goodness it is so beautiful when it blooms, all lavender. We also have watermelon and white Crepe's too. Ok Ok, maybe I do have flowers , but just not like I usually do, no Petunias spilling out of pots, no Marigolds standing erect in the sun, and most of all NO IMPATIENS! Impatiens were my saving grace in my shaded back yard. We still can't get the good ol regular Impatiens, only the New Guinea ones, (and they just don't grow like the "Regular" ones did).Oh, and no Zinnias, with their bright Mexican colors, all the rain caused a mildew to form, and out they went, wilted themselves to death. Just seems like a lot of healthy green is going on right now, you know Tropicals love this weather!
See what I mean, nice, but just no flowers.. and vines upon vines are growing everywhere! I pull tons every week to put out for trash pickup! If I didn't they would cover everything like Kudzu, and if you are from Alabama you know what that is! Going to my Grandmoms for the summer, we would pass so many abandoned farm houses that the Kudzu had totally taken over, I mean they were still in the shape of a home but totally encased in this retched vine! Miles upon miles of everything covered in a rolling sheet of Kudzu!

Now this is what I'm talk'n about! Flowers, this is how the back yard used to look, Impatiens galore!

I guess cuz  it's summer, everybodies creative juices are flowing, (or is that sweat?) but I have seen so many different tutorials on making Cement Leaves! As you can see in the top picture, I made one about 7 years ago out of an Elephant Ear. It has been in the garden all this time, I think when I first made it I sealed it with Thompsons waterproof, but have not touched it since, and it is still beautiful to me.

For some reason Dixie Boy, our fluffy guy, before I placed the leaf  in the garden, used to love to sleep in it, must have been the coolness of the cement.
There are so many tutorials on Pinterest and Youtube, on making cement leaves, please take the time to try this more than fun and easy project! I used Quikrete to make mine, so easy .

Friday, June 28, 2013

A Blast From the Past!!

Surfing my pictures today, looking for the ones I took of my Mom's Tea Pots, I came across My collection of Ephemera, yes I know I'm always surprised to realize I'm a secret hoarder, but honestly I really never planned any of it! Everyone wants to know where I keep all this stuff, but my attic is totally empty, and I do have closet space yet to be filled! The collection I am about to show you, is from my time as a teenager, when we lived in England. I lived  there from the age of twelve thru sixteen, 36 miles south of London in Maidstone Kent/NAS West Malling , and I can't tell you how much my Family enjoyed our time there. When I was fourteen, Me and all my girlfriends would ride the train into London and spend the day shopping, visiting Tea Houses, looking at all the Teddy Boys,  (hoods) they were always the cutest!! Oh God with their Stove Pipe Pants, (skinny jeans), Winklepicker Shoes, (looong pointed toes), great pompadours and black leather studded jackets...I'm telling you they were visions to us! This was in the late 50's early 60's, Mini skirts, Beehive Hair, High heels, and White Lipstick, oh yeah, we were rock'n it! We would go to the Granada in London to see all the Rock shows, and I mean when you saw one, it was a loaded show, at least five top performers, Cliff Richards, Billy Fury, Adam Faith,Chubby Checkers, Bobby Vee, Little Richard, on and on, I saw them all! Can you imagine today letting your young teens  get on a train and traveling somewhere to go shopping??? Gods you can't even let them ride their bikes around the corner! So glad I was born when I was, I don't think anything can beat growing up in the 50's and 60's, ahhh the music led our lives, Rock was bust'n out just like we were! I would go to the store every week and buy Boyfriend Magazine, oh this was a great teen mag with all the scoop on the stars and great hair and makeup tips, and a romantic cartoon series, that you just couldn't wait to read each week! Then the piece de resistance was their centerpage foldout!!! Usually a Male Movie Star or Rock Star! Well I saved a couple of the mags, but all of the centerfolds! I bet I've got pics of Elvis you've never even seen!! Oh and don't get me started on the two scrap books I have filled with clippings from the Mirror News Mag. I don't know what the English News Papers are like now, but they used to be wonderful! Well let me get back to my collection, I keep it all in this little suitcase, and it is filled with all kinds of great stuff! I mean I even have the Menu's from the Ocean Liner USS United States (first class) that we rode over to England on in 1958!! Geesh so much I want to talk about, I get side tracked....

The treasures unfold...
All my programs from the Best Rock Shows Ever!! Dion (Run Around Sue)(got his autograph) Bobby Vee,(Bounce'n Ball) The Shadows and Gary U S Bonds ( Quarter to Three)!! Brings a tear...
Words to two Great Songs!!!
Lord the Stones when they were young...and The Rocky Horror Show, when it was The Show!! Paul Anka (Lonely Boy) oh and I was drawing then too! Oh and the cute little picture one of my English school mates drew, she named it Brigitte ! sniff..
Boyfriend Mags, Richard Chamberlain (Dr Kildare), Young Elvis (got tons of his pics) and George Hammilton.
Troy Donahue, God did you see the Movie Summer Place??? Swoon..George Chakiris and James Daren, oh and in the back, Michael Landon (Bonanza)
Isn't this a trip!  and I mean a good one down memory lane! I have so many many more, but I think this is
enough to show, but I just had to add in my picture of Jayne Mansfield (late 1960' s)
When I was 19, I modeled shoes for the Great Shoe Designer Joseph LaRose for 2 1/2 years, and when Jayne Mansfield came to Jacksonville, just to buy his shoes, I got her autograph!!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Like'n My Lichen!

After my moment of forgetting, I decided to go through the pictures I have stored on my computer, and came across some unusual shots I'd taken in the back yard. This is the picture of a Market Umbrella that we've had for the last 12 years! I mean this umbrella has never been brought inside, and we only close it if there are high wind warnings from Tropical Storms or God Forbid Hurricanes. Usually when I close it up, I am busy look'n around the yard to see if there is anything else that might blow over in the storm. But this one day, I just happened to notice the actual umbrella itself, it was covered in the most beautiful Lichen, kinda like a bluish green color, or what I call Verdigris Green, one of my favorite colors in the garden! There were some of the most beautiful shapes, and it was kind of like look'n at an underwater reef.

Now this is 12 years of rain, sun, shade, humidity and heat, ok throw in a couple of freezes too! Here at the Beaches we really don't get the hard freezes too often. But isn't this like a cool Science Experiment!

I mean it's like a Moon Scape! I just love all the ruffles and fuzzy bits. I have this same type of Lichen that grows on the branches of the old Oak Trees that hang over the back yard. Nature at its best!

A Moment of ....

Today I was looking through my Facebook News Feed, and I saw a dress that reminded me of a friend. Well I wanted to share the picture on her Facebook page, because I just knew she would love to see it. The thing was, when I hit the share button and went to type in her name, I couldn't remember it, I mean I could see her face, but her name was gone!! So I thought if I think of her husbands name, surly it will come to me. You know like Dick and Jane, or Bob and Mary.But then I couldn't think of his name either, so sitting there with both of their faces in my mind, I started to panic! I stood up and went to the front door to look outside, thinking if I just take my mind off of the situation, their names will come to me, then I walked to the dining room, and circled back through the kitchen to my computer, still seeing their faces, but their names a total blank! I'm telling you, it was the most scariest moments I've spent, well..ever. I started to cry, and I walked back to the bath where Wayne was taking a shower, he was now at the sink brushing his teeth, he turned to look at me, and saw the tears streaming down my face. I said "Wayne what was the name of the couple we went to the auction with"? Now these are friends that we have known a long time, and all I could use as a reference was an auction we attended together.He said their names, and I just started bawling, I said "Oh God Wayne, I couldn't remember their names"! "I mean I truly could not remember"! "I saw their faces, but that was it"! He said "Rena you just had a moment of forgetfulness, everybody has them"! and he started laughing and kinda gave me a noogie. But it felt so much more than just forgetting, I mean there was no recall at all!! It has taken me all day to shake that feeling. I was so thankful to hear the front doorbell ring, and see my Granddaughter standing there in her cute bikini! She had just come from a friends pool and decided to stop at our place to shower and have some lunch. Seeing her at the age of 16, all young and fresh looking, and with that sweet smell of youth, it just lifted me up! Wow don't you wish...well, you know..

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Collections You Didn't Know You Had Part Deux!

After finally discovering My collection of Jewelry Boxes, imagine my surprise to find another collection! Frogs! Some indoors, but mostly out in the garden, they just add so much to the whimzy that I love. When I started documenting with photos, that is when I realized, ok it's for real, a collection! Oh my gosh I just remembered two more collections I have, the birdhouses and the 50's handbags, both of which I have shown in previous blogs. Ooops and 80's earrings...geesh..well at least I don't have 30 cats!!

Ceramic Frogs, now these are large and are in my front flowerbeds. I especially love the one with the dragonfly.

 The Metal Sculpture is so old, I can't even remember where I got it. The small Sprinkler Frog was my Moms, I made the little glass covered orb.

The Frog peeking out of the grass was one of those things with the stiff brushes on its back, that you wiped your shoes on, well the bristles rotted away and I couldn't toss him, so I put him looking out over the yard. I call the standing Gardner Frog "One Eyed Jack"! cute huh.

I love the Frog fountain at the little pond I made, I found him at Goodwill and he is perfect here, don't know if you can see but there is a little fairy off to the side, she lives at the pond too! While I'm not going to show all my frogs, I just had to add in my Frog Prince, look'n mighty fine with his little turtle and bunny keeping him company. Notice the cement Elephant Ear I made a couple years ago. I know it must seem like I have my yard cluttered with all this stuff, but I have all in my garden arranged in such a way that you just happen upon them. They are part of the plantings, it's like finding a hidden Gem! My Friends tell my my Garden is Magical...and it is!

Collections You Didn't Know You Had!!

Are you like me? You see something that appeals to you, so you get it. Well that is what I do with Wooden Jewelry Boxes, don't know why, but I can't seem to pass them up! How can someone part with a perfectly good one?? They seem so sentimental, as it's something you don't tend to buy for yourself, they are usually received as gifts. I didn't know I was a collector until I found myself stacking them! I've found all mine at Goodwill, if they are scratched, I stain them, or like the little one in the picture below, inside the table doors, it was brown wood, I painted cream, added gold edging and painted some leaves, glued on some little macrame wood  beads as feet, and it changed the whole look. That was my first Jewel Box. My faves are the wood ones with all the drawers, like little chests, you can see one on the floor under the table. The tall one on top, with another Goodwill find, my little Spool Doll, was one my Granddaughter and I found, she just had to have it. Enough Said! We brought it home and I re-stained it and she now has treasures left in it.

The picture below has a Jewelry Box that I received when I was 19, it was given to me by my Dearest Friend, Mona Martin. It has a Magenta Velvet top and drawers, but the best thing is, it has sliding padded doors that cover the drawers to the oval shaped box. Honestly I had never seen anything so fancy! Now I ask you, how could I ever part with such a wonderful gift?? Oh did you notice the picture of Jayne Mansfield, autographed to ME!!

I won't show all, but I have some of them incorporated in the rest of the house. The one shown below is on our Television Credenza, but they are mostly in my Shabby Chic Guest Room.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Easter 2013, It's Ever Changing..

This Easter was so different for me, I mean I still did a little decorating, a little cook'n, and quite a bit of reflection.

You know when my daughter Tiffany was small, her Daddy and I would go all out for Easter, just like I know ya'll did when your children were small. It was a Holiday that started the day before, getting the house ready for the relatives to come over, which were both sets of her grandparents, such fun coloring the eggs, making potato salad, getting the baked beans ready for the oven, and making my famous lemon cupcakes with lemon icing and just the right amount of pastel sprinkles. Oh those were such happy days. Easter morning, it was a fun ritual that we did with Tiffany, her Daddy, would sneak out the back door with her basket slam full of goodies, and put it on the front porch, ring the door bell, and jump into the bushes with the camera ready to get the money shot!! I would be ushering her to the door, "I think it's the Easter Bunny"!! gasping surprise! She would open the door and bam! Daddy got the picture! Those days are all gone now, ending when Tiffany was 4,  and I'm sad to say, along with that marriage. But now with Wayne, my hubs of 30 years, we kept things moving along with our own memories. Then the most wonderful thing happened...Grandkids!! Yeeehaa, first Evan and then 2 1/2 years later, Kingsley! Such joys, we would do the same things basically, except we would be loading the car up for our trip to their home. Wayne would spend the night before loading all the plastic eggs with candy, and certain ones with $5.00 bills,and we would get there so early, before the kids were even awake, and hide a bazillion eggs in their back yard. I'm telling you is there anything we won't do for the Grandbabies?? I think not!. Well  Evan is now 18, and spent Easter in Puerto Rico, surfing with friends, my Granddaughter Kingsley  went with her friends to the beach. So this year,our Daughter and Son in Law set up tents on the beach, and that is where we spent this Easter. No more small kids running around, but we were among friends and family, and it was such a relaxing day, 81 degrees, tons of sun and the most food you've ever seen! Change is inevitable, both sets of Grandparents are gone, the Grandkids are grown, but now the holidays are taking on a meaning that is so much deeper. Remembering all the moments we treasured, and all the people that we miss and loved. I truly thank God for all the Blessings he has allowed me to share with my Family. I hope you enjoyed this Easter with your Family and Friends, and didn't forget to reflect on all of your Blessings.

Monday, March 18, 2013

He Called Me a "Fish Murderer"!!

When my Grandmom passed I inherited her iron cauldron that was kept at the barn, just outta site of the chicken coop. I got stories about that for another day! Well we keep the cauldron in our screened room with a St. Frances of Assisi statue, that has turned it into a fountain. Wayne brought home some tiny, what they call feeder fish from the pet store, he started training the fish by tapping on the side of the cauldron each time he went to feed them. So cute, they would just come running. Over the months those fish grew to be about 3 inches long, we had about 5 of them. While adding water to the "Fishing Hole" , which by the way had that battery operated fish plaque that sings "Don't Worry Be Happy" hanging above it, I accidentally slopped some water on the cords that the fountain part was plugged into. I ended up electrocuting Wayne's cute trained fish. Oh God they were all floating, and when I reached in to pick up one of the floaters, I received a shock too. Now I had to tell Wayne. He took the news better than I thought and proceeded to cover any exposed plugs with electrical tape. Back to the pet shop he went, more feeder fish and more training. Soon these little guys were coming up at the first sign of a tap to be fed. Wayne was pleased again, and again months passed and they grew to be about 3 inches long. Sooo one day I decided to clean out the "Fishing Hole", I scooped some of the water out of the tank and then netted the fish and put into the water in my bucket. Took the cauldron outside and cleaned out all the old fish poop, and washed all the rocks, filled it with fresh water and returned the fish to their home. Later that night as I was putting the dog out in the back yard, I looked down at the sparkling "Fishing Hole" and Holy Shit! They were all floating!! When Wayne heard all my commotion he came running out, looked down and and started yelling "Why are you Murdering all the fish"? "That's it, I'm not buying you anymore fish, ever again"!
So now we have a "Fishing Hole" sans Fish!
As time went by I told Wayne I wanted to build a little pond in the back yard, and you know husbands, they always have a million excuses why you can't do something. Not having the word never in my vocabulary, I went to the garage and got one of those blue tubs that have nylon handles on each side, that you might store kids toys in, and cut off the handles. It's about 2 feet across and 26 inches deep. I took it outside and measured around it, dug a hole up to the lip of the tub, sunk it in the hole, filled it with water, put in a pump and There you have it...a pond. I took a ceramic fish off my garden table, knocked a hole in the bottom and put a tube up through the fish and out its mouth and made my own fountain. When I showed Wayne what I had done, he was so impressed he took me to the Rock Yard, and bought me about 100 lbs of flat rocks to put around the lip of the pond. It turned out so pretty! I was well pleased with myself!
See how cute! It wasn't long before Wayne came home with a surprise for me, a bag of fish for the pond!! Well ok, here we go again, of course Wayne trained the fish to surface when they heard the tapping and he would feed them, he was soo happy!
Months went by, and over the winter with all the leaves falling in to the water, it was like a black hole, you couldn't see the fish at all. The leaves I guess had dyed the water such a dark brown. Well to me what was the use of having fish in the pond if you couldn't see them??? Right?? So I decided to clean out the pond, but having learned my lesson, I was not going to touch the fish, I took the hose and ran it to the bottom of the pond slowly filling it so that it would overflow, sending all the brown water out into the yard, leaving clean water in the pond. It was now so pretty and all the fish could be seen and were swimming around so happy! Ta Da!
UNTIL...Wayne went out to feed the fish...THEY WERE ALL DEAD AS DOORNAILS!!! Wayne didn't say a word, we fished them out of the pond, put them in a plastic bag and threw them in the trashcan. I have never asked for, nor has he ever mentioned getting fish again, What is it with me and fish?? I don't understand, but for now there will be no more, I just can't take the carnage! I now have a cauldron with no fish, and a pond with no fish..Truce..