Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Fall Update and Midwest Gardening: Mid October-Windows, pumpkins and MIni's.

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WELL, after my episode with the Epi-pen at the beginning of the month,  I have been wary of even walking to the car when we still had the high 80 temps and the wasps and bees were buzzing around. Our temperatures finally abated this week, and we  got some much needed measurable rain! In fact it continues to rain each day.

Our trees are so stressed...they aren't turning colors, just an occasional one here or there, the rest are just dropping their leaves.

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Hubby is in the middle of replacing our front wall of windows. They have been cloudy with broken seals since we moved here in 1984. But, 109"x 84" is a lot of window to replace. $$$$$$$$, hence why we are installing them ourselves. Every window and door has been replaced in our 1973 house by my Hubby, as well as cement siding...so we can sit out our senior years with little to no maintenance.

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Well, almost they are almost replaced. We opted for three smaller windows with two cranking out.
Hubby found out why our windows were always cold and frosted, the wood plate covered a void space of no insulation between the foundation, brickwork, and windows! NO WONDER!.
Anyway no Fall decor as the front porch and living room are all ripped up, we are shooting for Thanksgiving to actually have it all done. 
Of course it's a dominos project: upgrade the electrical, new trim...new drywall---(PAINTING),  drapes or blinds. I'm waiting until everything is done before making that decision.

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I did purchase one large pumpkin and one smaller one. Our garden pumpkins looked terrific, except I think they boiled themselves hollow/rotting from the heat. The sun and temps were so high from July through the first week of October.

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This potato vine is turning from burgundy to green...and it's so pretty. It's coming into the house before the weekend.

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The Zinnias have not stopped, and now they don't want to dry with all the rain..I want to save seeds.

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I forgot these sweet ladybugs were in the middle of all those flowers.

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The pot planted marigolds gave up---but the vinca vines are still going!


Here is the in oldnewgreenredoground marigolds...yikes these are supposed to be 8-10" and they are twice that or more!

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The mailbox planter is really done.

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The front flower bed, is a mess---the Giant Sedum plants are turning...I need to spread the seeds from the Liatris stalks in hopes of getting more plants. I need to bring in some more colored foliages to this area. And probably some marigolds for later color. 

I did not buy any mums this year... it was too hot, and now they are all dried up and ugly at the stores---and in two weeks we will have a hard frost---thus, killing them anyway. Such is this MIDWEST Fall season!

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The Giant Sedum is gorgeous. These are one-year old plants, I put in last year. Glad they survived our wicked summer, many of my new perennials really struggled.

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The Day Lily leaves are limp...but the mint is thriving because we watered this area heavily to save all the plants.

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This is three days of Walnut balls dropping on the front lawn--it rained immediately after I took these photos---so they will have to wait until tomorrow to be picked up as walnuts kill anything they land on or next to.

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Still a Fall success are my three Mandilla I have to bring into the house by the COLD weekend. Last year I had blooms until Christmas.
Now on to the Vegetable Garden!

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Our Fall Garden would  be a success if this was a 16" sauce---lol, but it was only a 10" saucer and everything is miniature. The Butternut squash are ripe inside, the turnips are under 2", and I picked 4 green beans that weren't hard as rocks.

Here's the 12" strainer...we only got total 9 peppers out of 6 plants this year...sigh.

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I just scrubbed them...and trimmed off the dried stuff and the tops, tips.

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The heritage red carrots are really ORANGE inside...some of the turnips had spoiled spots inside.

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The mini Butternut squash was perfectly formed, seeded and sweet. Everything else went into a chicken soup base and it is in the slow cooker and simmering away!
This is all there was for this year---
I give 2021 gardening a D+ for the year. 

Clean up begins next week! All the leaves, grass clippings, vines,  will be tilled into the garden---if it isn't still raining! We also have to clean the greenhouse and finish the insulation to be ready for next year!

HOW"S YOUR FALL GARDENING GOING?

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Friday, October 1, 2021

Midwest Excursions: Fishing, Peril and Being Prepared!

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This week we have had cool nights and blistering days---we are still in summer here in the upper Midwest.


Idyllic isn't it? 

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Son and DIL camped in Shabbona (Illinois) State Park Campgrounds for a week. They rented a trailer and a boat to get away, safely. The campground in the middle of the week was quite empty. Perfect Covid Vacation. People wore masks in buildings, it was lovely.

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The restaurant/services building at the dock station had this great info on Chief (Shab-eh-nay) Shabbona, a Potawatami Indian Chief from this area. He was also Peace Chief to the "Three Fires Nations": Ottawa, Chippewa and Potawatomi Indians during the Midwest Indian wars. The town of Shabbona (pop.1200) is roughly thirty miles west of Aurora, Il. Out in farm country, this damned up river/artesian springs lake and the surrounding area are a Forest Preserve as well as a State Park. 

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The pontoon boat was huge, the lake is 315 acres-long and skinny with lots of created structure and fully stocked. The crazy weather has put a damper on fishing, but we were out in the middle of the day.

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There was much discussion on where to try and fish. 

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There was a healthy breeze, so you didn't realize how warm and sunny it was.

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Here are remnants of the trees lining a road that actually crossed this lake bed before the damn was built. There is a submerged farm and many man-made cribs, rock falls or what fishermen call structure. The lake is well stocked by the DNR and some huge 
Muskie and Bass have been taken out of here.

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My daughter-in-law relaxing and getting 'burned'.
Luckily we had a canopy, bug spray-which I used all over me, water, minnows, worms and great company.

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After a few hours and barely any bites on anything we went in for lunch. All farm freshly made in the restaurant up from the dock.

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The docking station where we were assisted by the owner of the Park services.

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All those boats and kayaks are for rent. Great facilities and services. I loved all the kayaks lined up...the colors.


Now, for the Peril and Being Prepared.

Fifteen years ago, when I was working for a Big Box craft store, I was bitten by something in the neck five times. Either a spider, bee, or wasp and I immediately hit the ground and was caught by a coworker. I passed out clutching the skin around the bites. Paramedics were there quickly??? and I was given a shot and told to sit up and let go of my neck. I did, and the venom pulsed through me again and I was out.

Four hours later I woke up in the ER...after multi-courses of medications with my husband staring at me with concern.
Since this serious episode, I have carried an epi-pen...I limit my time outside this time of year because of the aggressive yellow-jacket wasps. Our yard is full of flowers and I do my gardening very early or very late. Or hubby does it!

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THIS DAY--I CARRIED TWO PENS for the first time and FOR SOME REASON....
I suppose because I subliminally knew we were some distance from medical services, and since I still don't know what I was stung by the first time.

After lunch we walked back to the boat to take a tour around the entire lake, Away from the dock I put my hat on....a wasp was in the lining of the brim...I was stung at least twice on my ear...thank goodness not in the neck where the main veins and arteries are that can rush the venom to your heart and lungs.

I wavered waiting to see if there was a reaction---also to confirm that I was bit, and my ear started to swell in less than 30 seconds.
I gave myself the shot in the thigh, hard,  less than a minute after fifteen years of waiting and being prepared...

the Epi-Pen WORKED immediately. Swelling and sting went down, but
I felt disconnected and woozie for the immediate ride home (2 hours) and then slept for 6 hours and then another 12. 

IF YOU HAVE EVER HAD EVEN A SMALL REACTION to an UNKNOWN BITE, Be PREPARED

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It still was a beautiful day even though we were all skunked (Midwest for no catch)---my son caught 6 fish the next day....and we will certainly go back again...
Prepared!!

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This will be my Midwest Gardening view for now....until frost!
Hugs to all, be prepared, and stay safe!
Oh, Hubby did pick an entire garbage can full of huge Hubbard Squash and some sort of cross-bred pumpkins. We lost the two biggest pumpkins to Critters!!


What Critters are you feeding in Your Garden?

(I am in no way recommending any medications. If you suspect you have an allergy--or have a bite episode...consult your doctor on the best medication to carry.)

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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Antiquing....and I found my Marbles!

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Hi, this is post is lots of fun and OLD stuff! 

A few weeks ago, my friend and I went to a real antique mall, one of our favorites now in McHenry County, Illinois. Woodstock is the town from "Groundhog Day" with Bill Murray. 


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There has been an antique mall here as long as I can remember in the last 30 years or so. New owners have upgraded the building and the dealers. Excellent selections of everything from vintage to OLD, very OLD goodies. Lots of furniture, but of course it's the smalls and items we searched to fill out our own collections.

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One of the first stops is the bathroom...lol, it's a ride aways from our home.

There, a large room is dedicated to Vintage---mostly 40s-70's. A great large area is filled with vintage clothes, poodle skirts, and petticoats. My friend has bought two dresses there. I always look at vintage jewelry because I wear clip earrings. Loving this old jewelry box in pristine condition.

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Along with poodle skirts---every hometown soda bar had one of these for mixing malts. Hamilton Beach was a big employer in my home town of Racine, Wi. I dated a fellow whose Mom was the Home Economist for Hamilton Beach. While a great housekeeper, their home did have holes in the walls, for they had 3 sets of twins with one lone girl and four of the boys were wrestlers...hence the holes! 

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POODLEs---I keep an eye out for these at thrift stores, but it is fun to see them in PERFECT condition.

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I loved the Haeger three-maids vase. Pierrot Clown figurines were quite the rage for several decades going back to the 20's.

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Speaking of maids, I have a moratorium in picking up anymore tins,  enamelware, roasters in particular, none of them fit in my new oven, as well as stoneware anything and vases. 

But, that doesn't keep me LOOOKING and enjoying!

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This booth was extraordinary in the quality of their enamelware. 
From the 1800-through the 1970's.Great pieces at fair prices for their condtion. 

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Wow...huh?

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Item I do look for---an enamel funnel....yet to see one I can afford.

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Look at the blue double boiler over to the left...
I have thirteen roasters...hence the moratorium. The  blue tub at the bottom would be great for babies!! Lovely oak child's chair.

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I also have to think long and hard on kitchenwares...but BLUE----sigh!

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This rack of  yellow ware bowls are fab, and so is the pieces of McCoy...but I wanted that stand...LOL> NFS...not for sale! 

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Reminiscent of Torquay pottery these pieces are Haag Pottery. Lovely and a great lesson. 

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This mall has juke boxes, records, billiard tables, pinball games, cars, trains, to keep the guys entertained.
In the 1950's, tin toys were finally banned because of lead in all the paints. I remember this airplane and tower that cranked up and spun around in the air from my older cousin's. Awesome example.

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We were actually looking for Halloween, but very  sparse. This booth was from the queen of Christmas. Gorgeous and pristine examples. Everything you might have had or seen for Christmas as a kid.
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Look at all those original ornament boxes---FULL of 20's-50's ornaments. Everything your grandparents or great-grandparents might have had. She had more showcases and displays filled with holiday goodies.

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Even with 20% off, I couldn't justify buying  this beautiful Mandeville seed display box. OMG, it was gorgeous and priced accordingly.  After over 2 hours of poring over all the displays and hundreds of dealers...I felt like I had lost the few marbles I have left.

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But I even found those.....LOL. 
What a fun day---and I only bought one item ---
this trip and stuck to my moratoriums!!! 
If the Haeger vase is there next time---it's mine!

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Back into the heat at the exit of the
 Roscoe Woodstock Antique Mall in Woodstock, IL. Great selection, wonderful building, knowledgeable staff and dealers, and really a great fun center. For more info, here is their FB link


What have you stopped buying, something or category, because you have TOO MANY?

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If You enjoyed this post please FOLLOW IT in the upper right hand corner, to get just one email of each new post.

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All the opinions and photographs in this blog are my own, unless noted. I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway for my opinions, posts or any products shown or anywhere I shop.

 Please do not use photos without linking back to this blog without my permission. 

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