Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Something out of Nothing

Thanks to two vintage quilt squares for 10 cents each from the Catholic charities thrift shop, pillow stuffing for even less (another yard sale find), and our old discarded bed sheet,  I made this crazy quilt pillow. 

It took no time, since some kind lady had already done the quilt work. I just tweeked the two squares and came up with this pillow top. 

Fun to make something out of nothing.

Do I Dare Shoot (photos with my new camera)?

I received an ultimatum last night. Either use the new camera, or we are sending it back. 
Grrrrrrrr! No way, Jose!

So here goes. 
These are photos of my yoghurt straining this morning:

Fresh out of the fridge after cooling all night. Notice whey pooling on top.

Close up shot of clear whey. Slightly curdy underneath.

Set up of large colander and draining bowl underneath.

I add an upside down saucer to keep the strainer out of the wet whey.

Then I use a mesh paint strainer from Lowe's to line the sieve. Thanks to George G. for the idea of the mesh thing. He uses his to strain his compost tea. Yuck!

I spooned the set up yoghurt into the strainer.

Here is my saved starter for next week. Into the fridge it went.

I made three pots, so here is another view before straining.

Same setup as the other bowl.

Only smaller.

This one set up firmer for some reason.

See. It looks more like yoghurt!

Whey that drained out while I photographed.

Amazing amount of whey. I dilute it and use it to water my azaleas.

What's to cleanup!

Here is the results. Two large jars of Greek yoghurt and 6 1/2 cups of whey. Note that I started out with one gallon of 2% milk.

The last bit of Greek yoghurt from batch made last week.

Almost cream cheesy.

How I eat my yoghurt EVERYDAY. Topped with my favorite cereal and of course honey.


Monday, July 29, 2013

Straining/Draining Yoghurt

Straining/Draining Yoghurt

1. After your yoghurt has set up (congealed) in the fridge, dip off a bit of the yellowish liquid (whey) and pour it down the sink or save it.
[[[[ Save a few tablespoons of yoghurt in a closed container for your live culture yoghurt starter for your next batch.]]]]
2. Then line your spaghetti colander with a coffee filter or thin cotton ( not terry cloth) dishtowel or clean t-shirt material. (Some people use paper towels, but they do eventually break up.)
3. Spoon yoghurt into lined colander and set on top of a large bowl (to catch the whey). 
4. Return to fridge for about 3 hours to strain out whey.
5. Empty out whey that has drained into bottom bowl often. You may want to save some whey until the end for yoghurt that may be too dry for your taste. The longer you strain, the thicker (cream cheesier) it gets. 
6. You now have Greek yoghurt or yoghurt cheese. Stir to make it creamier. If too dry, add whey or a little milk.

This yoghurt keeps for over a week in the fridge. It also freezes for later use.

Have fun experimenting!

Homemade Yoghurt

Making your own yoghurt is not rocket science. That is what I told our civil engineer son this morning when he sent me the following photo of his yoghurt endeavor. Now to just chill it while he is at work today, maybe strain it tonight, and VOILA Greek Yoghurt!

A little background info--He had some milk that was hitting the "sell by date." What to do with a gallon of that? He made lots of pancakes and froze them for later, froze some milk, and tried the following recipe that I sent him---

Here is the recipe for Mom's Homemade Yoghurt:

1. Pour milk into pan and heat to ALMOST boil. Around 170 degrees F.
If no thermometer, just don't let it boil. You can do this in the
microwave in a glass bowl. 20 seconds at a time until it ALMOST boils.
2. Let cool to about 110 degrees F. A little hotter than body temp.
(Try to use your barbecue thermometer.) Skim off milk film. Flip loves
that part. You can throw that skin away.
3. Add two or three heaping tablespoons of live culture yoghurt. Whisk
lightly to mix.
4. Cover warm mixture and then wrap in a couple of towels or blanket
and put in a warm (not hot!) place. I use the bathroom off our
mudroom. I have read to use an oven with only the light turned on.
Mixture needs to have about 100 degree temp for 10 or more hours. More
than ten makes it more sour, so you need more sweetener. (Some people
put it in small containers at this point. Individual servings!
Nonsense for me.
5. After 10 hours it should look like yoghurt, but place in fridge. It
will get a little firmer as it gets cold.
6. Add sweetener and then eat, or strain it in a cotton (not terry)
tea towel or coffee filter in the fridge for 3 hours for Greek
7. Store in jar or container in fridge.
8. Save a cup of your yoghurt if you plan to try this again. That will
be your live culture!

You will not hurt my feelings if you water your plants with this milk,
but making yoghurt is like a science experiment. And just think how
many people you can impress when you say, "I made my own (Greek) yoghurt."
Love you, Mom

Please check out my next two blog posts. July 30, 2013 even has photos. ;))))

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Don't Flush Those Toilets!

My all time favorite blog post is called Flush Those Toilets! I don't know if people are just intrigued or what. But at least I wrote about that pink scum that loves to take a vacation in our bathrooms, especially during the summer months. If you are too lazy with your cleaning, it will take over. I even saw some creeping into Flip's water dish in the garage. What do we feed our doggies? Shame, shame!

But today I want to tell you how to gross out your guests, like we surely did.

When we lived in The Netherlands, we lived in a very old Dutch farmhouse. We remodeled it during the almost 20 years that we lived in it, but there is one thing we did not really think about in the remodeling. 

Before we moved into the "rustic" dwelling, we added central heating and a "real" bathroom upstairs. The central heating was wonderful, but we overlooked the fact that the new bathroom was located directly over our bedroom closet. When you flushed the upstairs toilet, the water and whatever else rushed down the drainage pipe almost over our heads. What a noise! Especially in the middle of the night!

It wasn't unusual for us to kindly ask that guests sleeping upstairs please refrain from "flushing" after we had gone to bed. I have never seen such shocked looks on people's faces. It was almost like we had requested that they go out to the outhouse by the chicken coop (or wherever the original outhouse had been located).

Now let's see if this blog post gets as much traffic.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

House (with Grandma) for Sale in Amsterdam

Truth is stranger than fiction.

If you have been reading my blog for very long, you know that we now own an apartment that was listed on www.funda.nl for almost three years. So to say that the real estate market in The Netherlands is pretty bad is an understatement. 

But today I read about a really unique situation in the house market in Amsterdam. I did not believe the Dutch newspaper article, so I Googled the address to determine if this was a hoax. No hoax, and here is the situation:

On Thursday someone placed an advertisement on www.funda.nl concerning selling a monument canal house at Herengracht 24 in Amsterdam for 875,000 Euros (1,160,000 US $).

The following is the description in Dutch. The last paragraph is the clincher:

"Het betreft een geheel perceel van 1 are en 39 centiare en een woon- werkoppervlak van 285 m2 met gemengde bestemming: wonen en werken, gesitueerd aan de gracht met een tuin van 60 m2 op het zuiden.

Het betreft een Rijksmonument, telt 8 kamers en verkeert in matige staat van onderhoud.

In 1947 is er een nieuwe betonnen bak aan de voorzijde van het pand aangebracht.

Een oudere dame (92 jaar) woont op de zolderverdieping, circa 60 m2, en heeft gratis woongenot op deze verdieping tot haar overlijden.
Zij draagt € 150,- per maand bij voor gas en elektra."

Translation of last paragraph-- [An elderly lady (92 years old) lives up in the attic, which is 60 square meters, and has free living allowance on this floor until she dies. She pays 150 Euros per month for gas and electricity.]

I researched this house and found out that it was built in 1615 and has been a rental property for much of its existence. Here are  photos of the front door. 

And the way it looked when it was built. Notice that #24 is on the left of this lovely building.

I keep wondering how the elderly lady climbs all of those stairs to get to and from her dwelling, since no elevator is mentioned in the description. 

Since July 25, 2013, she will certainly be known as "Grandma in the Attic."

Dust Bunnies and Spider Webs

Which room seems to be the dustiest in your house? 

It is probably the room you use the most. In our case, it is both the study (tv room) and our bedroom. It somehow seems that I postpone giving both rooms a good cleaning, since visitors do not usually enter either room. 

And anyway, how dirty could your bedroom get? Right!!!!

Many years ago I remember spending the night in my in-law's apartment when they were away on a vacation. Everything seemed neat and clean until I passed by a small bulletin board on the bedroom wall. The 1/2 inch layer of dust on the photos on the board let me know how dusty the room really was. Aaaaachew!

Our bedroom does not get that deep with dust, but it could. 

Yesterday I spent a couple of hours in the bedroom and the study trying to corral the dust. Nothing seems to work but a soft cloth, Pledge, and the vacuum cleaner. Our Russian cleaning lady many, many years ago used a wet cloth. Now I know why some wooden furniture pieces are grey instead of brown. I use Pledge orange oil, and it smells good, too. Any other duster just seems to relocate the dust. Forget the microfiber cloths, you can even see the relocation depots on the edges of your furniture. And then you have to shake out the dust outside. What a joke! Then you are dusty. ;))))

I actually attacked spider webs on the ceiling first. (Why can't I see them during the daytime like I do while I am reading in bed at 11:00 pm?) Something about dusting/cleaning should be done from top to bottom. Makes sense to me. Get all that dirt down so I can vacuum it. Now I know why housewives used to wear scarves tied on their heads. Why don't we do that anymore? 

And then there are the televisions. Those suckers are magnets for dust! I can dust them off today, and tomorrow I will need to do it again. 

I am not stupid. I know that some dust bunnies scurried to the hidden corners of both rooms, but maybe I will capture them next time I clean. Or maybe they will still be around when we move. Sometime in the next 30 years!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Now Where Did I Put the Photographs?

With a new camera comes the question, "where do I save these pictures?" If I am not careful, I will find them out on the World Wide Web. I have tried to make sure that I adjust my iPad and iPhone settings so that they won't be hanging out where I do not want them to be.

How do I see other people's photos? As a non-Facebooker ( but sometimes a stalker), I have somewhat limited viewing opportunities. Some family members do not trust Facebook (private family access) or Blogger (private family blog), so now they are trying an Internet-based image publishing service.  To be able to add comments or photos to that, I have to "join." That means more passwords, user names, and gosh knows what. Guess I will just continue stalking and, of course, enjoying.

And by the way, are those "real" photos still in that lovely bound album on the shelf in the den? 
Isn't it about time to sit down with a cup of coffee and flip through the pages. 
At least we know where to find those pictures!

Monday, July 22, 2013

What's in a Name?

I have been a fan of British chef Jamie Oliver for many years. He is known as a crazy dude, but he and his wife Jools have named their children really crazy names.  They started with Poppy Honey, then Daisy Boo and Petal, and finally Buddy Bear. Actually, as far as I am concerned, they can call their off spring anything they want. Even Arugula or Crumpet would seem appropriate for the future little Olivers.

But the British do not have the upper hand on names for their children. Some Americans are known for being creative with baby names and spellings. There are such creative spellings that we are not even sure how to write or pronounce the names. I still remember hearing about a young man named Anferny (this threw my automatic spellcheck for a loop!) and a girl named Monque (yes, that is pronounced Monique).

And, Hub, let's hope the new member of the British royal family does not have an unpronounceable name or the name of a piece of fruit or dessert.

Tom, Dick, or even Harry ;) will do.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Beltway is Hot!

We are not at the Beltway apartment, but the temps are HOT there. Way warmer than here in Wetcreek! 

And here in the US we have air conditioning throughout the entire house. Now that everything works again!

So a few tips to the super warm Nederlanders and Duitsers:  

Keep cool! 
Drink lots of liquids, preferably cool water. 
Wear sunscreen, hats, and sun glasses. Stay out of the midday sun rays. 
Wear light clothing, but beware of bare skin. 
Take care of the very young and the very elderly. 
Eat light and healthy.
And find a cool, dark place to sleep tonight. Even turn on the fan to stir the air.

And if I were in the Beltway apartment right now, I would be sitting under the air conditioner with the balcony awnings lowered as far as they would go.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Compost Cookies and Beauregard Parish Master Gardeners

Tonight the latest Beauregard Parish Master Gardeners "graduated" and received their badges and certificates.

This year a family style potluck dinner was planned, and that was a great idea. Not one person was responsible for the refreshments, and we had everything from store bought fruit trays to whipped cream jello salad (regional tradition) to delicious brisket to "dirty rice" to eggplant dishes. 

The dessert table was not terribly interesting or full, but that is not really so bad. We all eat too many sweets, anyway. 

My raised bed veggie garden is producing lovely eggplants, so I came up with my version of Eggplant Ziti. I did not have ground meat for a ragu sauce, so I "skinned" a package of Italian sausages and fried that meat mixture up to add to my tomato sauce. The eggplants got the sliced and oven broiled treatment along with garlic, onion, and green peppers. With the shredded cheese and rigatoni noodles I bought at Dollar General this morning, I prepared each layer of my eggplant noodle casserole and baked it right before we had to leave for the graduation.

My hub rigged up a special styrofoam bed to transport the "fresh hot out of the oven" dish on the back seat of our pickup truck. I am not a willing cook, but my casserole was not bad. We even had a second helping before I put the leftovers into the fridge. Yummy leftovers for tomorrow night! Yes!

Since our Master Gardeners are often busy with composting, I ran across a recipe for Compost Cookies that I could not resist. My dozen cookies were a hit at the potluck. Here is my recipe:

Easy Compost Cookies


1 package mix for Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 stick of unsalted butter (soft, but not melted)
1 large egg
1 teaspoon dry fresh coffee grounds
1/2 cup pretzels
1/2 cup potato chips
1/2 cup broken walnuts


Mix all ingredients together with a spoon. ( I finally used my hands!) 
Use an ice cream scoop to form balls and place in freezer for an hour.
Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Place cookie balls at least 2 inches apart on a non-greased cookie sheet or silicone liner. 
Bake for about 13 minutes. Do not over-bake. Keep an eye on the cookies.
Let cookies cool and then enjoy.
(If you want the "real" Compost Cookies NYC recipe, just Google it. And next time I plan to add dried cranberries, my favorite dried fruit!)

Or try this recipe:

Compost Cookies
Makes: About 15-20 Cookies
1 cup (2 sticks) Unsalted Butter, at Room Temperature
1 cup Sugar
2/3 cup Light Brown Sugar
2 tablespoons Glucose (Can be omitted if you are unable to find/purchase it)
1 Egg
½ teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
1 1/3 cups All Purpose Flour
½ teaspoon Baking Powder
¼ teaspoon Baking Soda
1 teaspoon Salt
¾ cup Mini Chocolate Chips
½ cup Butterscotch Chips (The recipe calls for mini, but I only could find normal-sized)
¼ recipe (1/2 cup) Graham Cracker Crust, Recipe Below
1/3 cup Old Fashioned Oats
2 ½ teaspoons Ground Coffee
2 cups Potato Chips (I used Salt and Vinegar Flavored Kettle Chips)
1 cup Mini Pretzels

Graham Cracker Crust (Full Recipe, 2 cups)
1 ½ cups Graham Cracker Crumbs
¼ cup Milk Powder
2 tablespoons Sugar
¾ teaspoon Salt
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) Unsalted Butter, Melted and Cooled
¼ cup Heavy Cream

To make the graham cracker crust, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, milk powder, sugar, and salt.  Whisk together the melted butter and heavy cream, and add it to the graham cracker mixture.  Stir the mixture until the wet ingredients are fully incorporated and the mixture is moist enough to hold its shape.  If it is still too dry, add 1 more tablespoon of melted butter.  Be sure not to add too much butter, as you don’t want it super wet, just moist enough to form small clusters.  Set aside until needed to make the cookies.
To make the compost cookies, beat together the butter, sugar, brown sugar, and glucose in the bowl of a stand mixer until light and creamy, about 2 minutes.  Add the egg and vanilla and beat on medium-high speed for 7 minutes.
Reduce the speed to low, and with the mixer running, add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  Beat until the ingredients are fully incorporated and the dough comes together; be careful not to over-mix the dough.  
Scrape down the sides of the bowl, and then add the chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, graham cracker crust, oats, and coffee.  Mix on low, just until the ingredients are incorporated.  Add the pretzels and potato chips and quickly mix on low speed until they have scattered throughout the dough.  Be sure not to mix too long because you don’t want to break up the pretzels and potato chips too much.  
Using an ice cream scoop, or a 1/3 cup measuring cup, scoop rounds of dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat.  Pat down the dough until the round tops becomes flat.  Don’t worry about placing the cookies to close together, you will move them and space them apart after they chill.  Cover the baking sheet in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to chill for 1 hour.  If you in a rush (like I normally am), you can place the baking sheet in the freezer for 30 minutes. Don’t skip this step of chilling the dough because the cookies will not bake properly.  
When the cookies have chilled, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Line 2-3 more baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.  Remove the cookies from the refrigerator, or freezer, and transfer them to the prepared baking sheets, being sure to space them at least 4-inches apart.  
Bake the cookies until they have spread and turned a light-golden brown, about 17-20 minutes.  Allow the cookies to cool completely on the baking sheets.  Enjoy immediately, or transfer to a sealed container to enjoy later.  These last up to 5 days in a sealed container.  

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Duvet! Oh Yea!

As much as I sometimes complain, we sleep under duvets here. We have lovely real woolen blankets, but we sleep under an eiderdown. Changing duvet covers on the huge king size duvet is a two-man/ woman job. Lots of stretching, shaking, tucking, and gosh that is real work! 

I saw on tv today another way to do this dreaded job. The following two videos will demonstrate what I am planning to try soon.


Her Quilt Project

Someone somewhere began a quilt and never finished it. What a statement! How many unfinished quilts are sitting in sewing closets all over this world?

Well, I recently found 19 quilt squares at our local charity shop. For 10 cents per square I could not leave them in the store. For that price I could use them to clean the kitchen, but I won't.

I am going to make a quilt top.

Here is what I found. A railroad pattern. Thanks, Mom, for helping me figure out that pattern.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

What Would You Do?

Four pairs of new glasses, and I could not see normally and clearly out of any of them? And I am not going blind! I can see clearly and distinctly out of my three year old lenses! 

Now what to do? 

We are both ready to cancel our eyeglass orders (Hub can't see clearly with his new glasses either!), but the office manager has to decide if and how much refund we will get. 

So here we are. 

I have had two eye exams, two prescriptions, and four pairs of glasses that do not work.

The eye doctor's office has our new glasses and our money. 

What would you do?

Friday, July 12, 2013

New Camera! WooHoo!

Now that I have a new camera, there will be no excuse for not having better than good photography from me. 

Our son keeps us in the technology. If it were not for him, I would never have had an iPhone. I inherited  his first one.  Then I inherited his second one (while my hub inherited the first one :D). Then two years ago I received my iPad for my birthday. In the meantime, we use our son's old university laptop when we travel to the Beltway apartment.

And now he has given me (us) a new camera. My home techie has already charged it, sent the instructions to me to download and read, and even tried out a few shots.

Give me a few days, but good photos are on the way.


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Beef Stew and 95 Degrees F

Most people go for the cool food like salads and melons in these summer temps. I cook whatever I find in the freezer and food pantry. 

Tonight we will have beef stew, boiled potatoes, and purple cabbage with apples. I know this is definitely a mid-winter supper, but inside, our house feels like mid-winter.

We have been battling the air conditioner downstairs for a month now. Our repairman has been called so many times that now he either ignores our calls or perhaps thinks he has better things to do than come out here again. But he came out this morning and decided he needed to order a coil, this time. He hopes to be back on Friday with the new part, and we hope so, too.

In the meantime, all upstairs and downstairs machines are functioning (until the fluid drips out!), and the constant noise of the floor fan in our bedroom is silent.

Flip is still sleeping in the study, but at the moment the downstairs AC is pumping cold air on his back. 

Not the "dog days of summer" you would imagine.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Garden Harvest

Besides pulling weeds and daily watering, I do very little in our raised veggie beds. This week we enjoyed eggplant parmesan with noodles, and tonight ratatouille of squashes and eggplant with mashed potatoes.

Here is a photo of today's harvest. 

Friday, July 5, 2013

Do You Put Your Business on the Street? (Like I Do!)

How many privacy statements have you either signed or received a copy of lately? Did you keep track of them? Like write them down in a list to keep? 

Of course not. You did not even READ them before you signed or threw them into the trash. You trust whoever asked you to sign or read the privacy statement that they will keep your Business private. Right? Well, what about you yourself? 

How trustworthy are you about keeping your own privacy or "keeping your business off the street"?

Some of us are open books! We worry that Big Brother is watching us, but we have the drapes open wide. 

Having lived in The Netherlands for over 25 years, I saw how transparent a culture can be. If you take a walk down Dutch streets any time of the day or night, you can view the activity (or inactivity) and the contents of most living rooms and dining rooms. The drapes are wide open, and some people say it is because the Dutch want to show off their belongings. Others say the Dutch want to show that they have nothing to hide. 

And do I look inside as I walk by ? Yep! 

Sometimes I see a 1970's interior that probably hasn't been dusted since then, and sometimes I see a very sterile, modern decor that looks like no one dares to enter. Once in a while I see someone eating a lunch or snack all alone at a dining table in the rear of the room. If I walk in the afternoon, I will see one or two children playing a game or reading. In the evening, there might be more people visible with the blaring television in full view.

Now let's get back to you (and to me). Do you have your drapes open or closed? Where we live in the hot South, closed curtains help to block out the heat. So maybe you keep your drapes closed.

But do you put your business out on the streets anyway? 

The moment I type my first words on this blog and push Published, my words and thoughts enter the World Wide Web. Privacy, goodbye!

When I include a photograph of my furniture, my beagle, or my front porch, my privacy vanishes.

Even if I do not include my name, exact location, names of friends or relatives, or whatever in my blog, I have put my business on the street. 

Following me on Pinterest opens up many private drapes or doors to my life. Even if you do not know me personally, you will learn a lot about me from my Boards on Pinterest. The same goes for my Followers and those I Follow. It is not for nothing that I blocked a Follower who I thought liked my gardening ideas and found out later he liked nude ladies much more. TMI (too much information)!

And then there is Facebook! Are you aware of what you are exposing on Facebook? Should you be surprised that what you put out on the Web (street) could change your life? 

Keep your privacy private and off the street!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Gone with the Wind--2013

I always feel a little like Scarlet O'Hara when I sit outside on our front veranda on a hot, summer afternoon. Today is no exception. It is lunchtime, and the warm wind is blowing our grapevine canopy so that it actually feels cool.

Our new bench in the yard is being shaded by our gnarled live oak, but I am too lazy to walk out there now. Maybe later.

When the wind dies down, I imagine what it must have been like to live in the South back in the Civil War days.  No air conditioning! No electricity and electric fans! No refrigerators and ice! Lots of woolen clothing for the men and yards and yards of cotton fabric in the antebellum dresses for the ladies.

There were lots of things that weren't too "cool" about the past.

Give me the now. Give me the present.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Convertible for a Picnic

It is that time again. The HOT time! Just look below at my thirsty potato vine. It will perk up, but doesn't that look sad?

I have been lazy with my photography lately, since my son said he had ordered me a new camera. But my iPad takes fine shots, even in the bright noonday sun. So here goes!

On my birthday last week, my mom gave me a gift to go out and buy a picnic table for the front yard. This summer we have been sitting on the front porch a whole lot, and I wanted a picnic table for the yard. Sometimes sitting in the grassy areas is cooler than on the brick porch.

My hub and I had been Internet shopping for this table with separate benches (we are too old and "fluffy" for the attached ones) for some time. I saw that there was a convertible bench/bench and table at a couple of Internet stores, but I was not sure they were very durable and sturdy.

When we finished our latest eye doctor appointment last Wednesday, I asked Hub to stop off at a "junque" shop on the way back home. There were some wooden swings, rocking chairs, and lots of rusty junk outside the store. But we went inside, and there it was. A cedar convertible bench/ table!
The price was a wee bit more than I wanted to spend, and the maker would not budge with his price. So we bought it anyway!

My hub asked for a special screw driver, and the shopkeeper dragged her hub out of his air conditioned shop to help us with an electric one. There was no way this bench would fit in our covered pick up truck bed without being dismantled. That was all a piece of cake (and Mom,
not Paula Deen's sour cream pound cake;))).

My photos below show you my 65th birthday gift from my mom and my hub. Thank you and kisses for you both. I look forward to many hours of enjoyment sitting on this bench. 

Now have we placed it in the right place? 

When do the mosquitoes come out?

(Notice the white plastic footpads? We sometimes have standing water here during heavy rains. Hee Hee. It never stands very long. Not this dry soil.)