Monday, June 27, 2011

Now and Later

Guy's I'm sorry, but I'm going to have to put the blog on hold. Until we have a faster internet connection it just takes too much time to put up a post.

And when I say too much time I mean around three to four hours. I don't have that much spare time. Hopefully, soon I will be able to come back but until then, thank you so much for reading.


Friday, June 3, 2011


I know I haven't posted a lot and I apologize, but something has taken up most of the time in my day.

We got a pool!!! Maybe this isn't as significant to you as it is to me but I am a water baby. Always have been and always will be.

I promise to post a longer post soon. Probably on a rainy day.

I have a recipe for the baby shower that will blow you away. And I have lots more pictures.


Sunday, May 29, 2011

Renaissance Festival

Yesterday was so much fun. The TN Renaissance is in it's last weekend here and we decided to play hookie and go. Our neighbors went with us and we all had a ball. The only downside is that it turned hot.

On one hand I wish I had dressed up, some of the costumes were great. On the other hand, I'm glad I didn't have to walk around under five layers of clothes in 90 degree weather. Maybe next year.

There was a joust. It was ok, but a little disappointing. I guess asking for an actual joust is too much in this day and age. I did take pictures, but my camera leaves a lot to be desired. It does not capture motion at all.

We also took a tour of the castle. What is so impressive is that the castle is a private residence. The man who built it actually lives there.
This is part of their actual kitchen.

Another pic. of the kitchen

 One of the tapestries. Isn't it beautiful

 Chain mail shirt

A rock formation outside the castle.

The vendors were great too. We stopped at a lot of them but we didn't actually buy anything. It was tempting to but some of the handmade soaps though. If they hadn't been so expensive I would have. Six dollars is too much. Even for homemade soap.

We arrived at the fair when it opened at ten and stayed til two. By then it was just too hot. So we came home and worked on the house (of course).Next year we will probably go in early May when it is cooler so we can wear costumes. 

Maybe by then I will have a better camera.

Thanks for reading,

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Plan B

Ok, well soaping fell though today. I wanted to but it just wasn't happening. Planning and shopping for the food I want to make at the shower took priority. Visiting my neighbor was also great. Then there is planning the pool area and making raised beds for more herbs.

So, I just didn't get to it.

But the Farmer found something cool. I mean really cool!

Disclaimer: the Farmer is not Jeff Corwin or Steve Irwin or Crocodile Dundee. He has lived in this region for many years and knows the wildlife. Please DO Not go around picking up random snakes. Many are venomous and can be deadly.

I think it's gorgeous. It is an eastern milk snake. When I asked him if he was sure that was the type of snake it was he said, "I hope so, it's bitten me like five times."

Isn't he hilarious?

Thanks for reading,

Monday, May 23, 2011

Oh My!

My Brambleberry order came in today!! I feel a little bad for the delivery guy though. I don't know why they won't drive up our driveway, but every time I have a package (which is way too often; seriously, it's like I have a birthday every month) they park in the street and walk all the way up our drive.

But my order came in!! What did I order? I'm so glad you asked. Here, I'll show you.

 Baby blocks mold for the shower. I love the little feet!

 This is one of their "oops" molds. It was on a sheet of molds that were imperfect. Rather than recycle them, Brambleberry sells them at a discount. It was hard to stop at three.

 Another "oops" mold. Can't wait to use this one.

 This will be great for 4th of July. Wish I had more than one.

 I'm going to blend this fragrance with honeysuckle as soon as they get more in stock.

 You wouldn't think this would smell good but it is amazing.

 Every order gets a free fragrance sample. Tropical vacation. Mmmmm!

 This is the fragrance I am going to use for the baby shower soaps.

 Three natural colors for me to use in CP soap.

Five un-natural (but awesome) colors that will be used in both CP and MP.

I will probably make some of the soaps today. More pictures will come tomorrow.

Thanks for reading,

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Baby Shower

In about a month my sister-in law is having her baby shower. A fun monkey themed party to celebrate the arrival of her little boy James. I, myself have never been to a baby shower. So, what do I do when she tells me about it? I say "can I do the food?"

What possesed me to utter those words? Because I love to cook and so far nobody has let me cook for a party/get together/holiday/shindig.

So, I do what I always do, I research. Yesterday we went to Books-A-Million where I bought four cookbooks. Then we went to Wal-Mart to get the supplies. And last night I made two of the recipes in the book.


They were both just bad. Not being one to give up easily, I'm going to tweak the recipes and try again in a day or two, after my confidence comes back.

I'm going to try for lots of variety. Nothing too fancy but nothing too dull. In trying to fit in with the theme of the party some of the desserts are definitely going to have bananas in them. You know, frozen bananas covered in chocolate, banana ice cream (drool worthy), and so forth.

The biggest problem I see so far is that most of the dishes on my "maybe" list have either chicken or cheese or some combination of the two. Variety...yeah.

Oh yeah, not to mention, this baby shower is composed of about 30 people. So, I'm going to cook appetizers for about 30 women and men.

So, I turn to my few readers. Should I prepare lots of just a few varieties or just have a sampling of lots of different varieties?

Sunday, May 15, 2011


Well, the chickies are still alive. It would be my luck to decide to put them outside during the one week that a weird front moves through and makes it cold. Two week of beautiful weather and then freezing.

Ok, not actually freezing, but it feels like it after 90 degree temps for a week.

But, they are moving around and eating so I think they are going to be ok. *breath sigh of relief*.

On another note, I spent lots of money yesterday on two splurges. I ordered a large amount of kefir culture from Leeners. What is kefir?

Kefir is a milk product made from cultures. It is similar to yogurt. Now I could also say it is fermented milk, but to most American palates, fermentation just doesn't sound good.

But Kefir is very very good. And it is very good for you. My favorite way to drink kefir is in smoothie form in the morning. I blend it with strawberries, bananas, a little honey and ice. Yummm! I haven't had it in almost six months but I placed an order with Leeners yesterday and I can't wait til they deliver it.

Of course, I won't be able to drink it right away. What I buy from Leeners is the live culture. When I get it, I take a gallon of milk. I use store bought milk for now but I'm hoping that will change in the future. You could use any type of milk (cow, goat, even coconut I'm told,even though it technically isn't milk). I then heat the milk up to 86 degrees. Once it's there I take it off the heat and pour in the powdered culture. Once the culture is all mixed in I pour the milk into half gallon ball jars and wait.

It's really up to you how long you wait. I'm told that the longer it sits the more sour it gets. I let it sit between 18 and 24 hours and then stick it in the fridge.

It can last for a couple of weeks but mine never make it that long. The really beautiful part about kefir is that you can re-batch it. Theoretically, you can re-batch as many times as you want but the taste does change. I usually re-batch once and then start over with a fresh culture.

You can use it in baking as well. Just replace any buttermilk with kefir, I think on a 1:1 ratio. Although if you're going to try it I would do a little research. I've never baked with it, I just like to drink it.

So, that was one splurge yesterday. My second splurge was from Brambleberry.

I absolutely love to make soap. I started almost a year ago after doing an embarrassingly large amount of research. Now I make a large batch ever other month or so and it's all we use. We don't buy shampoo or conditioner either. The soap I make works so much better than any shampoo bought in the store. For conditioner, I use a mixture of water and apple-cider vinegar. No, my hair doesn't stink.

I buy all of my soap making supplies from Brambleberry. The stuff I bought yesterday is mostly for the soap I am going to be making for my sister-in-law's baby shower next month. After I make everything I'll post pictures. Or maybe that will be my first tutorial! I like that idea.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Mother Hen

Well, the chicken house is finished enough for the little darlings to start staying outside. Now, I know this is better for them. They were starting to outgrow their brooder. But I'm still freaking out a little. I know they are going to be safe inside their coop. Doors will be locked to keep out predators and they will cuddle together to stay warm, but I'm still worried.

What if a big storm comes and knocks the coop over. Or maybe lightning strikes and sets the whole thing on fire. Ok, probably not going to happen, but it's their first night outside.

I'll update tomorrow on tonight.

Thanks for reading,

Monday, May 9, 2011

Internet and Pictures!

We finally got internet here at the house and I gotta say it has been a relief. Not only can I get the news and the weather updates(which is good considering the devastation that has been going on in TN) but I can also research more about the adorable chickens and make sure I don't kill them.
Aren't they just too cute. In two weeks I would say they have more than doubled in size. We have let them outside a few times to try and harden them up and when the nights get a little warmer we will be able to put them outside permanently! I'm told that after having chickens for several years, that the cuteness will become irrelevant, we'll see.

I mentioned before that I had lots of pictures to share and I do. Some of them are relevant to the farm and some are just for fun.

Isn't this neat?! I had just gotten out of the shower and was trying to make sure I didn't drip on anything that wasn't supposed to get wet when I noticed this. How cool! A heart in my footprint.

We planted a total of maybe 12 rosebushes early this spring. In lots of different colors too. White, pink, red, blue, purple, and yellow. This is the fist bloom!

I've posted pictures of fire here on the blog before. And I'm going to do it again. Maybe I'm a pyromaniac and don't know it. These pictures were a result of us burning off some of the rubber from the wire we had collected. I had seen different colors of flame before but never so many all in the same fire.
                                                    Just another picture of the pretty flames.

And another.

Just one more.

Ok, last one. Promise.

This year is a very important year for Middle Tennessee. 13 years ago the cicadas came. And this year they are coming back. The closest I ever came to a cicada was seeing the shells stuck on the trees. I mean, 13 years ago, not only was I not in middle TN but I was 12 year old. Bugs were gross.

While I'm still not too terribly fond of them. I'm also not 12 years old anymore and I can see them for their usefulness and yes, sometimes for their beauty. 

I cannot take credit for these pictures. The Farmer took them. They are his. I was sitting in the living room, reading when he came rushing inside and then back outside saying over his shoulder, photo op. Well, ok. Then he came back in and showed me this picture. It begins.

 A few hours later. It's kinda cool.

 The next day. Isn't it pretty? The new one, not the shell.

Our garden has started. We've had so much rain though, I think our peas have rotted. We'll have to replant them.

We didn't plant this tomato plant from seed because we are impatient for fresh tomatoes.

And here is our first one!

The lettuce is coming up nicely even with the weeds that we haven't pick because we haven't had a dry day in ages.

This is only a few of the potato plants, but they are coming up great. I'm so excited!

We also have carrots, beets, and three kinds of peppers. We have a whole box of seed packets that we have yet to plant. We just haven't had a chance, but hopefully if it stays dry we can get some more plants planted. It's still kinda hectic around here. We are living here but we are sleeping on an air mattress in our closet. We don't have a washer/dryer, so every week the Farmer has to go to the apartment after work and wash clothes. But it'll get better. 

He did bring most of my baking supplies to the house for me so I can start baking again! I love it and I've missed it. I'll even do tutorials!

For the rest of the day I'm going to paint the master bedroom. Once it's done then we will move on to the guest room. Then we'll carpet! 

Thanks for reading!

Friday, April 29, 2011


A few days ago I found out that I had become dependent on the internet. Not for work or anything but just addicted to browsing. How did I find this out?

We moved.

That's right. We moved into our house and left a lot of things behind at the apartment. For now. Things like my computer. And of course, for once, I had my camera and was taking pictures of everything. These wonderful pictures will come into the next post.

So, posts might be few and far between for a week or two until we get internet connections set up. Since we are so far out in the country we are going to have to go satellite, which is new for both of us.

For now, I will post when we visit the apartment to pack up boxes. They might be a bit on the short side and I apologize for that but I will try to make as frequent and as jam packed of news as I can.

In the meantime I will leave you will the most exciting news of the month: we got chickens!!

Nine of them to be exact. Three Plymouth Rocks and six Rhode Island Reds.

So cute! We bought them as pullets so we can get eggs faster. We should be able to put them outside in a few weeks.

Well, back to the house!

Thanks for reading,

Sunday, April 24, 2011


Most of the blogs I read on a daily basis have one thing in common. They all use lots of pictures. I'm so jealous sometimes and then I feel guilty and then determined. So, here are a backlog of pictures I have been meaning to show you.
We finally painted the master closet! Yay!! Now we have to finish dry-walling the master bedroom and guest room, then we can paint those and put carpet down.
We also began tiling the bathroom. It is fairly simple except for the fancy tile. But it's purty.

Just a closeup of the fancy tile. I thought it looked like a four-leaf clover. Maybe it'll bring us luck.
We are also putting in sub floor heating! That's going to be fantastic come this winter. Now to the outside.
 My white crocus!
And my purple crocus. We also had some yellow ones come up but I forgot to take pictures of them.
 This is my tulip and daffodil garden. We planted them late and so I wasn't sure any would come up this year. But they did!
Just a close up. My tulips have all disappeared now but the daffodils are still going strong.
 My first strawberry!
Same strawberry but a little more ripe. I was going to post another picture of the fully ripe strawberry and me eating it but the bugs got to it before I could :(
I will end today with a very cute woolly caterpillar. Isn't it adorable? I thought so.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Old and New

I've always admired people who can stick with things. Not just going to work day in and day out (I'm a stay at home wife) but with their hobbies as well.

For instance: bloggers.  I thought it would be easy to start a blog. I read several of them daily and they update almost everyday. Surely I could do it to. What I didn't see is the time it takes to take the pictures, work with them, write the blog, try to make it readable and fun, edit it, edit again and then I add an extra step and check my stats like a madman and fret because nobody is reading this yet. I am writing for future readers. It takes a lot of work. Lesson learned.

The Farmer told me that nobody would ever read it if I didn't write it. And he's right. Same goes for my novel. Procrastination is, I think, one of the hardest habits to break. But I'm going to try.

Blogs are supposed to be about our lives and our interests. An online diary. Keeping a diary never worked for me, I usually lost interest. I'm going to work hard to see that the same doesn't happen here.

So, this blog will be a little bit of history, maybe a little boring but hopefully not too bad.

When the Farmer and I met I was working at Books-A-Million as a barista. I worked with his sister Jessica and told her one day after he came in that her brother was hot. I'm not going to tell you about our initial meeting yet, maybe one day. It's one of his favorite stories though so if he hijacks my blog again you may get to hear it.

Anyways, Jessica loved the idea of her brother and I together. Long story short, he came to my apartment to put a new lock on my door ( didn't trust one of my roommates) and he brought the movie Titus to watch. Have you seen Titus? Not everyone's idea of a first movie for a couple to watch. I loved it though. He asked me out, I said yes and a few years later we decide to get married.

Neither of us wanted to waste money on a big wedding. So, we went to the courthouse, paid $95 for the license and said our vows with my friend Vanessa taking pictures.

It was so nice not to have to deal with all the chaos and stress in dealing with a "real" wedding.

So, we got married, then he got a promotion and we moved to an apartment in the Nashville,TN area. And now we've bought a house and I started a blog about my life out in the country and the work on our house, which will continue next blog.

Now, a month or two ago my little brother sent me a text message informing me that I was to become an aunt. Not really a big deal. Everyone loves his girlfriend. Sam is fantastic and very good for him. They might be a little young but at least they aren't still in high school.

The family began making noises about how they weren't married. The Farmer and I talked about it and concluded that Nick and Sam didn't have enough money to have a big wedding. So, we told them that if they would do what we did, elope to the courthouse, we would pay for it.

They thought about it for a few days and then accepted our offer.

It wasn't really eloping since they invited the family and it was a little more stressful but it was beautiful. And now my brother is married. What a weird thought. I will definitely be posting pictures when the baby comes in early August.

So, that's a little bit of my history and now I can talk more about my family without you getting confused. New pictures of the house are coming Wednesday along with a much overdue update.

Thanks for reading,

Friday, March 25, 2011

Kinda Lame

So, I didn't update Wednesday... or Thursday. Why? Because there isn't much going on. I wanted to post pretty pictures of completely finished rooms and flowers all around the yard but there is a problem or two.

1. We don't have any finished rooms. We have three rooms that are drywalled and partially mudded, but those pictures are actually really boring. But we are hard at work on the bathroom now. The floor has been taken up and now all we have to do is put it back down and connect all the plumbing. We are looking to move in around mid April.

2.Only a few of my flowers have bloomed. And I keep forgetting to take pictures of them. I am working on having my camera with me at all times but it is a harder habit to develop that I'd anticipated. But when they do bloom, I promise you that you will get tired of all the pictures of flowers.

Back at the apartment I haven't been doing a whole lot. I like being lazy occasionally. Playing Final Fantasy and eating bad food. My lifestyle is about to change drastically in a few months and so I'm enjoying my last chance to be the irresponsible and lazy young adult.

I did put in an order at Brambleberry though. It is my favorite place to buy soap-making materials. I am going to try my hand at making liquid soap very soon and I want to do lots of research first. I am also going to make some soaps for a baby shower I'm going to in June. My brother's fiancee is having a little girl and Brambleberry has onesie molds that are going to be so cute decked out in pick with lots of glitter.

Truthfully, not much else has been going on. Short post I know, but hopefully I'll have more later. We are going back out to the house tonight when the Farmer gets off work so hopefully I'll remember to cart around my camera and have some pictures when I get back.


Monday, March 21, 2011


My morning tea, well at least this morning: chamomile and mint in my favorite tea mug. I usually save the chamomile for my night tea but I since I have been sick, I drink it when I feel the need to.

When I say sick, I don't mean anything serious. Just a little cold that the Farmer brought home from work. He got sick and thought up some ridiculous ideas like not kissing me so that I wouldn't pick it up.

It didn't work. Not because it wasn't a good idea but because I can't not (great english i know) kiss him. I considered it worth the risk. And then I got sick too.

Like I said, it wasn't bad. The sniffles, coughing, and a headache. I'm just a big baby when I come down with something so I didn't feel like posting a blog. But I'm on the mend now and I will try to catch you up.

The store delivered my tub!

Wonderful, big, fantastic tub that it is! Right now it is sitting in the living room because the bathroom is not yet ready. Not yet but soon. They also delivered some drywall and with it we finished the spare room.

So, now the master closet, master bedroom and spare bedroom are all drywalled!

We also splurged again.

You see, the Farmer wants a garden. I want a garden. I want to make homemade spaghetti sauce, and marinara sauce, salsa, pickles, and soups with the best ingredients. So, we needed a garden.

But our land had never been tilled. And we live in Tennessee. There's a reason the favorite song is Rocky Top. The Farmer attempted to dig the garden with a shovel but there were so many rocks...and big big roots. So, he decided we needed a tiller.

We looked around and realized that this was going to be a big expense. So, if we were going to spend the money anyways we might as well get a good one. So, we did. And it hurt.

But seeing the ground almost ready for the seeds to be planted just two hours later didn't hurt. It felt wonderful. So, it was a good splurge.

We also planted lots of flowers. I can't wait til they all bloom!

Back at the apartment the Farmer informed me that we were running low on laundry detergent. So, we made some more. Yes, we made some.

When I realized a few years ago that I was going to be living in the country one day I started reading blogs, just to get a feel for what I was getting into. One of my favorites made her own laundry soap which was cool and all, but I didn't need to learn to do that. The stuff in the store worked just fine.

Then, quite recently, I just got on this kick of seeing what all I could do. I think it happened when we moved and I wasn't in school and wasn't working. I was bored, so I learned how to make laundry soap.

It has saved us so much money. All we need is a soap(we use Fels Naptha), borax, washing soda, and water. It's that easy. I doubt we will ever buy laundry detergent from the store again.

We also need to make another batch of soap to wash our bodies with soon. When we do, I will post pictures.

We are off to the house tonight so hopefully I will have some cool stuff to talk about Wednesday!

Thanks for reading

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Texas, Tubs, and Soap!

Well, I'm back at the apartment after almost three days at the myself. I must admit, it has been a long time since I was out in the country alone. Long enough that it was a little nerve racking at first.

But I survived. Not just being alone and surrounded by woods but also the Farmer's trip to Texas. Why was he in Texas? He has to go once a year for his job. At least this year I wasn't at the apartment. I was free to go outside and play if I wanted to.

Did I? No. For two reasons. One) because I was too gloomy. Honestly. I just didn't feel like doing anything. And yes, it was like this last year too.

Two) it was raining most of the time.

He did come back with some good stories though.

Like: the store called him as he was on the plane and told him that our tub had arrived. Remember that tub? The one that wasn't going to be in for a month because it was on back order? Yeah, that tub. So, as soon as he got home and I fed him a decent meal, we went to the store and arranged for a delivery! YAY!!

And: the hotel store soap was awful. Why is this funny. It's not really but it did put a smile on my face. The reason being is because almost a year ago, I started making our own soap. We haven't bought soap, shampoo or conditioner for almost a whole year. And I have to admit, I have sometimes wondered if it was the right choice.

Apparently "normal" soap is slick and snotty. And it coats your skin. My soap washes off quickly and clean, but the soap at the hotel took awhile to wash off. It made me feel good. We made the right choice.

The Farmer also came back with freebies. I got a new jacket and sweatshirt. It amused him that they were giving away winter things when it was seventy degrees outside but he took them anyways.

He also went to the Alamo while he was there. As soon as I can, I will post pictures.

House updates have been slow in coming because we have had other things to do. Later this week we are off to Chattanooga to celebrate my Grandaddy's birthday!! However, we did manage to put some tile down in what will be the laundry closet.
That is the kitchen floor in the back, by the way. Yes, it matches the bathroom floor. It too is being redone. Soon.

We are almost finished with the master closet. One more coat of drywall mud should do it.
Looks like Heaven's light is shining down doesn't it. It's not, we just bought a pretty light that looks like water on the walls.

It feels like it has been raining forever. If it doesn't stop soon, we may not get our garden done. When it rains, the Farmer spends time down in the creek. Before we came it was a dumping ground and now when it rains hard, the creek actually overflows and floods the entry bridge. So, the Farmer is trying to get rid of some of the pile and get the creek flowing more freely. He says it will help.
Not a great picture but since it was raining, I couldn't get closer. But you can see how high the water is. And you can see the pile on the left side of the screen. He wants it gone.

He did find a treasure out there though.

Fantastic. Apparently they are down in the creek quite a bit. Just never when I go to look for them. Oh well.

I suppose that's it for now. I'll have more pictures soon, hopefully of my new bathtub. And, as I keep reminding the Farmer, we can actually move in after the bathroom is done. Our lease is up in June but I don't think it will be that long til we are in the house!

Thanks for reading!