Aug 31, 2009

Sunset on the Beach

Last night I attended a memorial gathering for a good friend who passed in July. The gathering was held on the shores of Lake Michigan at sunset. It was very chilly but beautiful.

Balloon release in my friend's honor.


Aug 30, 2009

October Blog Party


Autumn happens to be my favorite season. I love the crisp mornings, the smells of leaves and earth, dressing in warm colorful sweaters, bonfires and everything there is to this glorious season. Autumn is so beautiful here in Michigan. Also, the beginning of autumn means my favorite holiday is right around the corner, Halloween. This has always been my favorite, even as a young girl. It is the one night you get to dress up and pretend to be someone or something different. Now it has more of a spiritual nature to me but I still dress up and I still decorate like there is no tomorrow.

Naturally, when I heard that there was an October Blog Party going on over at the Domestic Witch blog, I had to sign up. Here is how it works. I had to pledge to do is something holiday related everyday of the month of October and blog about it. I do not have to blog everyday, just tell you all what I've been doing on each day. If anyone has any interest in participating there, is more info at or you can click the October Blog Party button on the right hand side bar of my blog.

We will now return you to the regular blogging program, at least until October.


Aug 27, 2009

Lucas Turns 5 & Give Away

My nephew, Lucas, turned 5 Monday but we celebrated on Sunday. Here is a recap of his birthday party. At the bottom of this post is a give away :)

The Birthday Boy and his laser tie. I am not sure where he came up with that but boy is he cute.

Opening presents. That's my son, Allen, behind him.

My brother, Dave, and his friend, Andy, manning the grill.

Lucas blowing out the candles on his cake with the wind helping.

Funny story behind this photo. Lucas wanted sprinkles on his cake and Daddy didn't put enough on. He told him "No Daddy, Let me do it!". So Dave handed over the sprinkles and Lucas promptly dumped half the bottle of sprinkles on his slice of cake. Wow did we ever laugh!

Lucas and Aunt Jessie (me).

My brother and his friend, Jeremy, juggling beer bottles.

My brother, his girlfriend Crystal and Lucas. Aren't they all adorable?

Ready for another give away? Mrs. B. is having a fabulous giveaway at her blog! She is giving away a PDF novella called "Prey for Mercy" by AE Rought. If you are into paranormal romance, check it out!


Aug 26, 2009

Semi Wordless Wednesday

This is the story of what happens when a 70 year old* Maple tree decides to split in half and fall on the garage. The rest of this post is wordless.


*Corrected from initial post.

Aug 19, 2009

Poultry Judging

Today's post has gone to the birds. It is all about the kids and our poultry. The county fair has been keeping us fairly busy. Haha Did you get that pun? Yeah, I know. It was a groaner. Today was Judgment Day, at least in the Fancy Poultry category. The Market category was yesterday. The results are as follows.

Jeremy got an A+ with an Honorable Mention ribbon for Amber our Rhode Island Red pullet. He received an A for Miss Queen, the Ameraucana hen, and Winifred, the Pekin duck.


Miss Queen

Allen received an A+ with an Honorable Mention ribbon for Checkers, the Barred Plymouth Rock pullet, and Goldie, the Buff Orpington hen. He received an A for Row, the Rouen duck.



Clockwise starting with the dark duck: Row the Rouen, Missy the Pekin, and Winifred the Pekin. Missy belongs to a very nice family that we met just this year. Row eagerly added her to his harem of females, even though she is NOT going home with us. Ahh, young love.


Aug 15, 2009

Fair Preparation & Gnomish Find

We have had a very busy day. Most of which was and is still being spent on last minute preparation for the county fair. I am just taking a break. Entry day is tomorrow. We still have to finish rehabbing the duck crate tonight. We are replacing the wire top with a hinged plywood door. It was originally intended for rabbits and the opening is way too small for our fat duckies. In the morning, all the poultry going to the fair are getting a light bath before being crated. This entails holding them down, spritzing them with a water bottle, drying and a gentle feather buff. After that we need to pack up food. Then it is off to the fairgrounds by 6:45 AM. Once we arrive we sit for an hour. We get there early so we can get the best pens with plenty of ventilation. It was a balmy 90°F today so imagine the poor critters cooped in the middle of the barn. Next the birds get a health inspection, we set up the fair cages with bedding and food, cage the poultry and lastly go to the entry office. Phew! I am tired just thinking of it. Needless to say, this night owl is not stay up until midnight even.

On an unrelated topic. I managed to get to my next door neighbor's house. I am watching her little Jack Russell terrier for the weekend but her good friend is also using the garage for a yard sale. She had the cutest little gnomes that had seen plenty of wear and tear. I thought they would be perfect for the garden. They ended up in the pots on the back patio. Are they not adorable?


Aug 14, 2009

Blooming Friday and Give Away

Over at My Mother's Garden, there is a fantastic give away going on. She has a cute handmade ceramic toad abode up for grabs. Just follow her comment instructions and it could be yours. Hurry, the contest ends Monday Aug 17th at midnight EST. This is open to residents in the USA and Canada.

Now, on to the blooms.

Itty bitty tomato blossoms. This is a Spoon tomato. They are even smaller than grape tomatoes.

More Butterfly Bush and Hydrangea blooms.

I am not usually a big fan of Impatiens but I love these. They are called Fiesta Ole Peppermint.

Fuchsias that are not quite open. I took this later in the evening so they were already shut.

Not technically a blossom, but the fruit. This is a developing egg on our Easter Eggplant.

Queen Anne's Lace in the yard.

Sunflowers across the street at the school garden.

Gourd blossom and developing gourds at the school garden.

Sunset through trees on a side street in our neighborhood.


Meme Award for Me

Centria at Opening the door, walking outside from Michigan's Upper Penninsula passed along a MeMe blogging award to The Magical Mundane. Here are the instructions:

In accepting the award, you have to reveal 7 things about yourself and pass the award on to 7 other bloggers. Since my blog is mostly focused on nature and garden photography, my choices will be as well.

Here are my seven reveals:

1) I am really a geek at heart. Some of my less commonly known interests are astronomy & archaeology. If there is a science, nature or history program on the television, chances are I am watching it. I love science fiction and fantasy books. I have probably watched close to every episode of Star Trek ever made. I am into digital photo manipulation. I am fairly versed in computer coding.

Digital manipulation of our last kitty, Phantom. Still miss you princess.

2) I am very crafty. I scrapbook, rubber stamp, card craft, create altered items. I also love embroidery and counted cross stitch. However, knitting and crochet elude me. One day I will conquer these crafts but not today.

One of my favorite cards. I just love using that little chick stamp!

3) I am a night owl. Some of you may have noticed that most of my new posts come up between 1 and 3 am EST. That's because I am sitting here in the middle of the night typing. Usually my husband is not far behind asking if I am ready for bed yet. It is 1:30 am as I type this.

Moon photo from 2007.

4) I have two jobs outside of the home. My Jan - Apr job is an office manager for Jackson Hewitt Tax Service. It is an exhausting job but I am fortunate to work with a wonderful group of people, all the way up to the franchise owners. My May - Dec job is as an independent skin care consultant through the direct sales company, Jordan Essentials. Again, I work with another set of wonderful folks and couldn't be more blessed.

Working the Jordan Essentials booth at the local fair. Left to right: Jessica (Me), my aunt Rachel, and my cousin Heather. It's a family affair.

5) I love animals of all types. There isn't an animal I don't like. I love spiders, snakes, bats and even skunks. While I am not a hard core PETA type, I do donate both my time and money to ASPCA and HSUS. I am a firm advocate of spaying/neutering as well as adopting rescue animals.

6) I love tasteful tattoos. I only have two but I am planning more. Most people don't realize I have them unless I am wearing shorts or I am showing them off. On my right leg I have an Asian dragon that is still a work in progress. My left leg has a chili pepper and its blossom. My wonderful artist actually drew it up from the photos I provided.

My pepper and dragon tattoos.

7) Alright, here is the mushy moment. This may come as a shock, but my best friend is my husband, Dave. I have quite a few friends that have told me spouses don't count but I think they are wrong. I can confide in my husband and I trust him to keep my confidence. And he knows the same is true with me. He attempts to listen to all my crazy interests and I do the same for him. We aren't perfect but we are definitely good. It is so nice to have a spouse that is my soul mate, lover, provider for our family and best friend all wrapped up in one wonderful package.

Dave and I being exceptionally cute, Halloween 2008.

Here are the seven blogs I am passing this coveted award to:

1) Sunita at The Urban Gardener, located in Mumbai, India. Her blog has some beautiful photos of her region and her blogging style is like having your own personal tour guide.

2) Kanak at Terra Farmer, located in India as well. Her blog is a visual delight with a large number of butterfly, dragonfly and other gorgeous insect photos mixed into her flora photography.

3) Katarina at Roses and Stuff, located in Gothenburg, Sweden. This is the home of Blooming Friday. There are just not enough words to describe her rose photos. I think I am having a moment of Camera Envy! Here is a bonus, her blog is in both English and Swedish.

4) Rosey Pollen at Dung Hoe, located in Colorado, USA. Beyond the fact that her blog name makes me giggle everytime, I enjoy her topics, light writing style and of course fabulous photos.

5) Autumn Bell at My Nice Garden, located in Malaysia. Another spectacular blog that focuses on garden blooms but still adds in highlights of the region. Another tour guide in training.

6) Karrita at My Mother's Garden, located in Florida, USA. This blog combines art and garden photography. For a crafty gardener this is Nirvana.

7) Meredith at Great Stems, located in Texas, USA. With blog post names like "Cantaloupe Sex Ed" and "Toadally Frogsome Rescues, Dude" what's not to love. Meredith's posts are witty and her photos superb.

Honorable Mention - The following blog is the one that passed on this award through the circle of blogshpere I am on. It is worthy of being repeated for the award from me. But I think that Amy probably needs a break before she's up to writing another 7 x 7 post. So please go visit Flandrum Hill and enjoy her beautiful writing and photographs. It is inspirational.