We dumped our land lines earlier this year after Mama died. She was the only one who used them any more. Gordon and I conduct more business on our cell phones than on the land lines, and Unc could not hear well enough to talk on the phone if Gordon or I were not around.
Unc was nervous about NOT being able to hear well if we were not around to pick up the phone. That nervousness translated into hearing even less on the land line. If we were around for him to hand the phone to us to interpret what he might not be able to hear, he could hear better.
That probably makes no sense if you've never witnessed the indignity of aging, but I hope you know what I am trying to express.
We just opted to drop the land lines, keep our cell phones charged and with us 24/7, and spend the money saved on some other bills. More and more we are running across folks doing the same.
Anyway, while acquiring my personalized Facebook Internet address (url), I could not help but remember the time when keeping up with someone was just the matter of remembering a pager number.
Mama and Unc used to talk about the many advances in technology in everyday life that they had witnessed. Imagine what Gordon and I will be able to list as technological advances in our lifetime when we hit our 80's!
What is your Social Networking footprint? Does Social Networking make you more sociable?
Here are some of the pretty flowers that have beautified the farm this spring.
has been so rainy for so long, and I have had this ongoing
bronchitis-like stuff, so Gordon or Unc brought flowers inside to cheer
of the rain-drenched flower shots that Gordon snatched between rains
are my favorite flower pictures from the first five months of 2009.
Now, looking back at these pictures from the past five months, as I
share them with you, I realize how just a photo of flowers can brighten
For a good while we thought this bronchitis-like stuff might be
triggered by allergy, so the only flowers I received from the yard
(since I was house-bound by the chronic coughing) were photos of
flowers blooming in the yard.
Each of these flowers in these photographs come with memories. Most happy, some bittersweet.
remember one particular afternoon, about 18 years ago, when Unc, Mama
and I went to Kay Emmon's homeplace in Carroll County to buy starts of
this antique rose. (first two photos) That was quite an adventure
finding her stately 1870-era farmhouse.
"pegged" rose bushes to make baby plants. That method calls for pulling
a rose branch down to the ground and putting a brick on the branch to
hold it in contact with the soil so that new roots can form. After
about a year, you can sever the branch and transplant the baby rose
Other types of plants she started under quart jars around her yard.
There were small battalions of little quart jars stationed at strategic
places. It was quite a visual experience of color and little armies of
quart jars and bricks.
That was a magical afternoon, and we bought a number of antique roses and lillac and fragrant violets from her.
What are your memories of special Green Thumb Ladies you have met
through the years? I have a cousin in California who sends photos of
the roses cut from
her yard. LaNelle Renfroe Johnson must have roses in bloom 12 months
She sends her rose pictures to various family and friends. Those
pictures are really a day brightener!
As for this bronchitis like stuff, the doctor put me on a different
course of medicine yesterday, and it seems to be working. As soon as I
now, I will share with you a very suprising cause of chronic
bronchitis-like cough that has grounded me for well over three months.
Jenny B came to live with us here on the farm March 21, 2009. She has long since captured our hearts, all three humans. (Heck, she captured my heart in the first five seconds.)
Jenny B is busy being Jenny B these days.
She and Mackie have formed a very close bond. Anywhere Mackie goes, Jenny B is right behind him. Anything Mackie does, Jenny B is his shadow.
Sometimes they look like a tiny team of furry white horses the way they run together, as if they were in invisible traces.
Every morning, Jenny B wakes me up by licking my face, especially my nose. I've GOT to find a resource that tells why a dog wants to lick around a human's nose and mouth.
I don't want to stop her licking, but I do not like the face licking.
She is so cute when she licks away my tears. They must taste very different because she stops and studies my face before resuming her self-appointed role as tear-annihilator.
Jenny B is a Mama's girl, but she also flirts and plays with Gordon and Unc. Gordon has discovered that she can't stand for him to lightly blow in her ear...like he might blow over my ear...light and ticklish. Those two have turned it into a game of hide and seek among the pillows on the bed.
Gordon blows across her ear. Jenny B hides among the pillows. Gordon finds her and blows. Jenny B wriggles all over and scurries around on the bed to hide behind me or burrow under another pillow. It is quite a delight to see them play like this.
Jenny B patrols the back yard with Mackie, every time. During all this rain, she has come in soaked and muddy, just like Mackie. She brought in just as many seeds in her fur during those weeks it would not stop raining enough for Gordon and Unc to mow. I'm sure she wonders why the Westies here get so many baths!
It's past time to give her a little trim, and I am deliberating whether to cut those adorable little tufts of hair around her eyes. They look SOOO cute. We have been brushing her every day and working with her to get her more accustomed to being groomed. We don't want to create any anxiety in her sheltered little life.
Jenny B is so tender and trusting and loving. As I mentioned before, she was hand-raised by a breeder who knows how to prepare the vibrant terrier personality for loving homes. Jenny B would be fabulous around children, and terriers are not always recommended for households with children.
You know there will be more photos and blog posts about Jenny B and all of our Westies! Until then, here are some Jenny B posts you may have missed:
It's raining today. A pretty, gentle, summer rain. I would normally enjoy a rain like the one we had today, but my "acute bronchitis" has been getting worse all week, and we have an appointment with the doctor tomorrow, hoping she can end this three-month saga.
Anyway, I need cheering up, so I have been editing some photos I took last week of pretty yellow fabrics. Here follows some pretty pictures and prattle.
First, I will confess I have a problem with this out-of-print "Sunshine" by April Cornell for Moda. I'm obsessed with it. If a fabric could represent the complexities of a human's existence, THIS fabric is how I would want to be as a human. Don't ask me to explain that. I cannot.
The fabric was introduced to the consumer in 2007, I think. Of course, I did not discover it until late 2008. I ordered my first yard. I even prattled about it in this blog.
Then I started looking for more of this fabric. I wanted enough for a backing of a king size quilt, 9 to 10 yards. I found the almost-six yard length that I snatched up.
Browsing around the Internet late one night recently, I stumbled across this beautiful eight yard length ON SALE! AND the shop accepted PayPal, meaning I could pay for my "fix" straight from the bank account...forget some little bill that might need to be set aside for a while...I needed a Fabric Fix!
Well, my fabric shopping has been greatly curtailed this year, so I get even more excited when a package with fabric arrives! I've had to do a little fabric shopping for a special commissioned quilt that I'm currently working on. You will see it when it is all finished. *grin*
While sorting and organizing my fabric stash, I decided to take a photo of some of it. This Tower of Happy Yellow represents most of my yellow fabric stash.
Another piece I bought long ago I was delighted to find a similar piece recently. It is the yellow batik pictured in this post.
While I was enjoying photographing yellow fabrics that day, I shot this favorite yellow print by Sue Penn. I cannot remember the name of the fabric line or the manufacturer. I had cut off that info from the selvage to look for later. That little piece of selvage will show up. I have a little collection of them since i am always looking for various out of print fabrics.
The mulberries are coming in. Have you ever eaten a mulberry right from the tree, warm from the sunshine? It is like a very mild, sweet, soft blackberry without the tart and without the seed.
The heavy rains earlier this year probably washed the pollen off of the trees, Unc told me, resulting in a very sparse crop of mulberries this year.
We have one large mulberry tree on the west side of the farmhouse. The birds and deer eat most of those mulberries, so there are very few mulberries left for us humans. I also love the tree for its fall foliage also, so we continue to plant baby mulberry trees around the homeplace, knowing the wildlife will feast on the berries.
One year we even had a family of skunks come to visit and gorge themselves on mulberries every night.
That was back when we used window fans in the bedrooms to pull in cooler air at night. Skunks travel in a cloud of their infamous odor, even if they have not been startled. I can still remember waking up to the pungent, undeniable odor of skunk in my bedroom. It is a rather alarming way to wake up! One does not go back to sleep easily while breathing eau de skunk!
Plus, in those days, our border collies lived outside, so I was always afraid the dogs would wake up and decide to chase away the skunks! Fun memories!
I love Mulberries so much, to eat and for the tree's beautiful fall foliage,
that I sculpted an ornament and a brooch of the mulberry leaf. The
angel is darting between the mulberry leaves in this sculpture. Her
wings and skirt are made of mulberry leaves.
Unc caught up with the orders for his wood carving, so here are some new pieces that he has available.
The wood is all from trees that Hurricane Katrina uprooted in August, 2005. It has dried slowly and naturally. That means the wood won't crack in the future.
He oils his primitive kitchen utensils with olive oil, several coats to seal the wood.
These Salad serving sets are new designs for Unc. I remember how many years I searched for something hand-made by a Mississippi or Alabama artisan to add a little drama to serving salad. Why did I not ask Unc to make a pair for me 20 years ago?
The bread board was a special commission for a special friend. The special wood grain, the natural organic shape of the board (following the shape of the original log) and the size make it truly one-of-a-kind!
He has started making little cutting boards again as well.
Here is how we use his little cutting boards. They work marvelously when trying to keep little pieces from scattering all over the counter or table or floor!
Another new primitive kitchen utensil Unc has started making this year are potato mashers!
All of Unc's primitive kitchen pieces are hand carved and hand finished.
Several of these pieces pictured in this blog post are already sold. If you are interested in some of Unc's primitive kitchen items, just let me know, penny(at)pennysanford.com. Unc accepts Paypal or checks.
I prattle about Unc all the time on this blog. For those who are new readers, Unc is my 83 year old uncle Charles K. Hamer. He has lived his entire life and is the fifth generation of this family to live and work on this Historic Centennial Hamer Hills Farm, established 1837.
I found this little treasure while recently cleaning out a drawer in the house.
Back when I was a little bitty tyke, like age 4 or 5, I found this little treasure on a playground in Jackson. We lived in Jackson during the week for Mama and Daddy to work, and we came home to the farm every weekend.
I vividly remember opening my grubby little hand and showing my little found treasure to them that afternoon. I'm pretty sure they checked with the other parents to see if another little child had lost it. They taught me ethics like that, so I feel sure they practiced those ethics as well.
All I know is that I was allowed to keep this Australian penny, from 1943. It was a special treasure since my name is Penny.
All these years, I have wanted to have this mounted in a finding that will allow me to wear it as a necklace. There is not enough room to thread a chain through the curled lip of the hat. I've tried numerous times.
You can see there are solder marks on the underside of the little hat that hint this may have been soldered to something...a belt buckle?
Is this a real coin for Australia? It would have been a rather large and thick penny.
I've seen real U.S. penny coins flattened with the imprint of some tourist destination added. People collect those. I've never seen anything like this little hat.
Please share any information you might have on this type of coin art. Sharing my little "treasure" with you has been a fun mini trip to Memoryville!
Gordon has fixed the Subscribe by Email feature to this blog! YEAH, Gordon!
Apparently, Feedburner was bought by Google, and there was an email (that I totally missed) instructing me what to do to tweak things the Google way. I hope the tweaks will restore the email delivery of this blog to those who are subscribed that way.
If you have changed your email address, or if you want to subscribe to this blog for the first time, just look for the subscription thingy over on the right of the page. Enter your email address into the little space, and click on Subscribe.
I just subscribed to my own blog so that I could share with you what steps are involved.
After I hit the "Subscribe" button, a window popped up, and I had to type in the letters of the squiggly non-word.
Then I got this message: "Please check your inbox for a verification message from “FeedBurner Email Subscriptions”,
the service that delivers email subscriptions for Penny Sanford
Designs. You will need to click a link listed in this message to
activate your subscription."
Hope this helps. Some of you have asked lately about subscribing to this blog via email. Even more of you have asked why you were no longer receiving this blog by email anymore. Now you know why...and how.