Monthly Archives: August 2013


Just when I thought it was going to cool off so I could get back into the yard full time, it becomes an inferno again.  But there is a promise of rain this weekend.  I’m gonna take them at their word and use my rain barrel water to water my newly planted stuff.  Hope it rains to refill them.

This morning I planted some of my fall garden.  First things first, I always say, so the rutabagas went in right away.  Collards will follow, with lettuce in a couple of weeks. I put in some tomatoes I had rooted from my old plants, and they are taking off.  Hope to have time to harvest a second crop before the first frost.

Took me two days and part of this morning to get all the rescued plants in pots.  I have about 150 plants to grow out for the native plant society sales.  Fly poison, tiarella, rattlesnake plantain, Jack in the Pulpit, native azaleas, native magnolias, and lots of others.  We’ll be having a plant sale at our September workshop, so plan to join us.  Ernest Koone, who owns a  native plant nursery in Lagrange will be speaking about native plants to use in the home landscape.  Also learn how to make a fairy house, a bit of whimsy for your garden.

And on a sad note, someone ran over our black racer snake.  He will be missed, but his passing will be celebrated by the chipmunks who will now proceed to burrow underneath my entire yard.


A life well lived…

Our dear Miss Winnie died yesterday.  She has attended Oak Grove church for most of her 94 years.  She was a lady through and through.  Also so calm and serene, with a lovely sweet smile on her face.  I know her family is missing her, as all her church family will miss her.

She died less than two weeks from her 95th birthday, but she passed peacefully after a few rough days.  God is good.


Scott snagged us two tickets to the first game of the playoffs.  I have my Braves shirt freshly laundered, my Braves cap dusted off, a green lot parking ticket, and my cooler ready to be filled.  October, here we come!

Saving the environment…..

I did my part yesterday in helping to save the environment.  I spent 4 hours in the woods with 5 wonderful people, digging native plants to save them from the bulldozer.  This is one of my passions.  I collected ferns, native magnolias, tiarella, rattlesnake plantain, climbing hydrangea, fly poison, and Jack in the Pulpit.  A few of these will find their way into my garden.  Others will be planted on the Buffalo Creek Trail.  And some will be sold at the Native Plant Society workshop on Sept. 21.  We may not be able to stop the progress (a new reservoir), but we’ll be doing our small part in minimizing the damage to our native plants.

It took almost 2 hours to pot up all those 200+ plants, but that’s a good way to spend my time.  It’s been over a month since our last rescue, and I was beginning to have withdrawal symptoms.  I’m planning to go on at least two more in Sept., so if you have a passion for native plants, why don’t you join me?


Something to think about….

Our Sunday School lesson last week was about how to deal with trials.  This week it was about resisting temptations.  Looking at Matthew 4 we learn that while Jesus wandered in the wilderness he was sorely tempted by Satan.  With each temptation, Jesus responded by quoting scripture.  Our week’s goal is to list those temptations that dangle like a fishing worm in front of a fish.  We can take a little nibble from the temptation without getting hooked.  But too many nibbles, and eventually we all get caught up in whatever is bad for us.  So this week, we’re all writing down those things that we encounter this week as temptations, then searching through the Bible to find just the right verses to call upon to help us resist those temptations.  Sounds like a plan to me!

And my first temptation?  Using my time unwisely all afternoon.  Gotta start searching for my verses!


Note to self….

I learned a valuable lesson last night.  We took the two dogs for a walk around 11:00 last night.  The lovely little Maggie decided it was time to go explore, so she lunged and jerked her leash out of my hand.  The lesson learned:  Never chase after a dog that has gotten loose when there’s a big dog who thinks its a game following right on your heels.

Just as I grabbed the collar, Chloe ran between my legs and I took a tumble.  I’ve heard of people saying things seemed to happen in slow motion, and now I believe it.  As I fell, I was thinking “Don’t catch with your hands, might break a wrist.”  So I took the brunt of the fall on my left elbow (in a patch of sweet gum balls, of course)  and my right hip.  I limped home while Scott split the woods hunting the little muffet who was howling cause her leash was caught on a branch.  Bad dog!!!

Figured I’d be totally “stove up” today, but surprisingly I’m not hurting any more than usual.  Just a little stiff when I got up this morning.  So next time I’ll let her have her run, get tangled up, then go find her.  Problem solved.


Oh, also learned to stay out of sight today so the neighbors who were already asleep when the howling started won’t throw daggers at me.



Decisions, decisions…

Okay, do I buy the $700 freezer, just because I’m lazy about defrosting the old one?  Or do I save that money to buy something else?  Well, this “Willow Mae Kemp” raised girl will keep the old one and spend this afternoon and evening cleaning out the old one.  I checked into the new models, and the frost free mostly have the digital readout for controlling temps.  I definitely won’t ever have that feature on my fridge or freezer again.  After a little over two years, the ‘mother board’ on our refrigerator  went out and it will cost almost $400 to replace it.  I’ll keep it as is until the temperature needs to be adjusted, then I’ll get rid of it and buy one without any bells or whistles and hope it will last a little longer.

Our front loading washing machine was also a real dud.  The plastic pull to open the door came off within a couple of months.  We had bought the extended warranty, but this was deemed ‘cosmetic’ so wasn’t covered by even the extended warranty.  Shortly after that, a piece of the plastic around the detergent dispenser broke and once again, it’s cosmetic.  No warranty.  I’ll never buy the extended warranty on an appliance, especially after I found out it kicks in at the same time as the manufacturer’s warranty.  So you have overlapping warranties, that don’t fix anything!  What a rip off.

Then I was told by one sales rep that the ‘platform’ for the life of almost all major appliances is 10 years.  That means they’re made to need replacement within ten years.  Whatever happened to appliances that last for years on end?  Does any manufacturer make a good reliable appliance anymore?  Is our whole world just going to be disposable?  What a waste of our resources, time, money, and my patience!

And for that matter, whatever happened to the pride in producing a good quality, great performing machine?  It’s not just appliances either.  Seems that everything is made cheaply while the prices just keep going up.


Okay, that’s off my chest, so I’m putting on my snowsuit and diving into the freezer.

My cup runneth over….

….along with every rain barrel, the gutters and the drain pipes.  We had several inches of rain in less than an hour.  But as Brandi reminded me, it’s just replenishing our ground water.  Tomorrow, if it’s not raining, I’m starting on some new drainage from the driveway cause our back yard is washing away due to the overflow from the current drain pipe.  Ah, the joys of home ownership never cease.

We enjoyed a lovely visit from Leslie today.  Had lunch together, sewed together, and watched the Braves together.  Then we went through the nursery and pulled out some really nice plants for her yard.

Brandi called to chat and said she was working on some new things for us to do when we visit in a few weeks.  She doesn’t want us to be bored.  I think a  trip to a monthly antique sale is on the slate.  Don’t know what else she’s looking into, but she always has great things planned for us.   I’m always thankful for the two wonderful young women ours girls have become.

One of those days…

I had a blah day today.  Doesn’t happen to me very often, but when it does, I make the most of it, getting all the sympathy available around my house.  Tossed and tumbled all night due to a pain that radiated from my lower back, down my hip and up into my ribs.  I laid around all morning, did nothing but feed my bees and hummers.  After a nice back rub with that lovely-smelling Ben Gay, I started feeling better.  So it was off to the Open Hands Christian Ministry to do a little volunteer work.  If you’re ever having a bad day, just visit one of our local shelters or food pantries.  It will sure put your life into perspective!  I had a little back ache.  So what?  Somewhere someone went to bed hungry, someone had an ache with no one to give them a back rub.  Someone was struggling to keep their utilities turned on.  Someone was homeless.  Thank you, Jesus, for reminding me I’m a lucky little girl!


those were the days

I see so many new school buildings with air conditioning, nice floors, pretty exteriors, and I have to wonder if the kids and teachers will ever know the joy I found in teaching those first years.  Refereeing pick up ball games, patching up skint knees, learning the Indian rain dance and then seeing the look of excitement on the faces the next day when it was actually raining.  No push for passing those mindless tests.  Just pushing them to learn to read, memorize times tables, learn some fun songs, do some riddles, play indoor games with blown up balloons on rainy days.  Oh, I ache for today’s teachers who have that inner child in them, but someone is keeping that side of the teacher tucked neatly away.  I wonder how many of them will be able to stick with it until retirement.  Musn’t let school be fun.  Musn’t ask kids to be accountable and responsible, musn’t ask parents to leave the teachers alone and let them do their jobs.

One of ,my favorite (and I think most effective) principals stayed in his office with his feet propped up, but we all knew he’d be there right beside us to defend us, right behind us to urge us on, and right in front of us to take the heat.  They just don’t make ’em like that anymore.  What a shame it all has to be about test scores and self esteem.  Your can’t make them care about their test scores. That has to come from within.  You can’t give them self esteem.  That has to be earned.  We’ve forgotten those two simple things.  If we would remember those, we’d be a lot better off.

And now I’ll climb down from my soapbox, and just say I hope all the kids and the teachers have an outstanding year  with memories that will go with them for a lifetime.