Thursday, January 30, 2014

Retraction of PO'd Blogpost

The husband of my cleaning lady just dropped by. 

The story goes that she has been taking care of her elderly aunt and did not have phone access. She had asked her husband to notify us that she could not come to clean, and he finally did that today. 

So I will be looking forward to some cleaning help next Wednesday.


Who Needs Sochi, When We Have Ice On Our Pond?

We have ice on our pond!

See it?

What about now?

Is this better?

Now you can see the glaze!

And the agaves were covered. Hope that helps.

Flip doesn't dare sit down on the cold bricks.

He is ready for exploration after three days in "house arrest."

Ready, set, .....
Update: 9:22 and GO! Flip is gone to play with his girlfriend Kara! ;)))

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Bright Red Cardinals and White Sleet

Our red brick looks dull compared to this cardinal.

A piece of corn hidden in his beak.

The lady in waiting.

Love how these birdies puff up their feathers for the cold weather.

Mr. and Mrs. Don't you just love her hairdo?

Female escaping.

Gathering feed.

The scout on duty.

Ready for swooping in on the food. Never identified the large brown bird in the distance. But there is another scout on the ground.


Not snow! Sleet and Ice!!!!

Too windy for agave covers. We are waiting until the wind dies down.

View from inside the mudroom door. Lonely birthday present bench and unprotected agaves in pots. Oh mercy me!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Almost Free Love

My heart art project:

Thrift shop buys. 10 inch embroidery hoop for 25 cents. Woolen plaid fabric for 5 cents.

Self-made heart from sleeves of a gently worn baby fleece shirt and crocheted ribbon. (Rear view)

Close-up of the plush fleece.

Thrift store metal heart (it opens for potpourri or sweets) for 25 cents.

Hides a hole from old thermostat.

Fits right in with our "brocante" furnishings. Love this mirror!

Fun, frugal craft project on display.
Took me 20 minutes to make this wall decoration.
Cost: 60 cents. 

I am blog partying with City Farmhouse at

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Who is the Bird Brain?

We ran out of bird feed this week!

I knew that I should have gone to Dollar General to buy my milk on Thursday. But I didn't, and yesterday Flip and I made peanut butter/stale cracker pizzas for our bird feeders. Plus we filled the trays with crushed crackers and rice crispies. 

For my Dutch followers, Vivara makes a special "pindakaas" for birds with all the best ingredients for birds. Wonder why Calve isn't good enough? We eat and like the Dollar General brand peanut butter. If it is good enough for us and Flip, it must be good enough for the wild birds.

The cardinals and sparrows loved the "gourmet" meals yesterday evening and this morning.

Our son took a "snow day" yesterday and got a chance to see his bird restaurant in business. Today he went out and bought this "bird swing" to spruce up the joint.

This swing would be a perfect place for a possum naptime, don't you think?

And speaking of birds, here you can find a few bird-feeding myths: 

Friday, January 24, 2014

Sneaux? Ijs? Brrrrr!

More sleet than snow, I know.

Live oaks in pots. Deep freeze treatment.

Blankets of towels and ice.

Not as white as expected.

Too cold for the hunter.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

I'm PO'd!

Yesterday I waited for our new Help to come vacuum our floors. 

She did a great job last week, and I paid her a decent wage for her 2 1/2 hours. 

Then yesterday she did not show up!!! 

What was I thinking? 

Just more proof that no one is hungry around here.


Monday, January 20, 2014

Downton Abbey--My Comment

For a long time, friends and family have been asking if we are following the Public Broadcasting series "Downton Abbey." 

We actually enjoy most British television programs (old and new), so I suppose it was time for us to see what Americans were so interested in. Today at noon we sat down to read our magazines/ books, and I decided to watch a cooking show on TV. The show looked rather boring, so I flipped back one channel. "Downton Abbey" was on, so we watched. 

Except for the over extravagant lifestyle, the show is not much different from the really old series "Upstairs, Downstairs." The same class problems, the same love/ hate relationships, the same kitchen/butler issues. 

But I noticed something that just does not ring true about the whole series. When and where in England can women wear sleeveless, underwearless, flimsy dresses? With the exception of one warm August visit to London back 25 years ago, every time I have been to Great Britain and visited old manors or buildings I have needed a jacket or at least a heavy sweater. 

The wealthy women of all ages in the DA series wear diaphanous dresses all day every day even with the huge fireplaces roaring with fire. The servant staff and all men in the show look more appropriately clothed for those chilly temps I remember. In reality, they would have been dressed in woolen clothing. 

Would the rich gals have been shivering while the others in the household were either comfortable or perspiring? 

Now when does this series come on again so I can pick it apart? I really should stick with British comedies. Far more fun!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Our Neighbors' "Old House"

The Old House

How old do you think this house is?

Don't think I want a cuppa.

Somehow the Boom Box does not fit.

( Photos thanks to our Dutch friends J and M. Anno 2012)

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Tech Neck

Besides "rocks in my head," I am sure I have become a victim of "tech neck." 

So I am taking a break from my blogging on my iPad. 

Have no fear. I won't be away too long. We do have a PC, and iPadding on our breakfast table is not so bad.

And it is time to get back into the garden anyway. Daytime temps down here are perfect for cleaning out these flower and veggie beds.

See you soon. Linda

Monday, January 13, 2014

BPPV- Have You Got Rocks In Your Head?

It seemed when I blew out my birthday cake candles last June and turned 65 that my body screamed, "Ouch!"

I have pains that I never had before. But besides needing the Tin Man's oil can for my joints, I can do most of what I have always done. That was up until this week.

Then an old acquaintance came by for an unexpected visit.


Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo

According to Wikipedia,  "Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is a disorder arising in the inner ear. Its symptoms are repeated episodes of positional vertigo, that is, of a spinning sensation caused by changes in the position of the head.BPPV is the most common cause of the symptoms of vertigo."

My general practitioner diagnosed this back at least 10 years ago. He and an Ear, Nose, and Throat specialist tested me, examined me, and treated me at that time. Actually, the specialist could find nothing wrong with me and never understood my dizziness. But our local GP insisted I had BPPV, and after giving me his famed neck jerk suggested I do the exercises described in the video below.

What causes my vertigo? I am sure staring at my iPad does not help, so I am going to cut down on that. According to Wiki, 

"It can be triggered by any action which stimulates the posterior semi-circular canal which may be:

  • Tilting the head
  • Rolling over in bed
  • Looking up or under
  • Sudden head motion
  • Post head injury

BPPV may be made worse by any number of modifiers which may vary between individuals:

  • Changes in barometric pressure - patients often feel symptoms approximately two days before rain or snow
  • Lack of sleep (required amount of sleep may vary widely)
  • Stress"

So will I be dizzy again someday? Probably. But I know an exercise to relieve the ill feeling. 

Brandt-Daroff Exercise for Vertigo

  • Move into the lying position on one side with your nose pointed up at about a 45-degree angle.
  • Remain in this position for about 30 seconds (or until the vertigo subsides, whichever is longer), then move back to the seated position.
  • Repeat on the other side.

People using this exercise usually are instructed to do 20 repetitions of the exercise at least twice a day.

Better yet, watch this video:

Or try the Epley Maneuver on this video:

Warning: I am no doctor. So if you are experiencing dizziness, visit your doctor and ask about BPPV.

Friday, January 10, 2014

600 Blog Posts in Two Years! Who and What is Wetcreek?

Wetcreek (actually this creek has a different name, but it is mostly wet)

Flip, our beagle/harrier

My favorite restaurant food (Indonesian rijsttafel)

Bread maker

Lindy Loopy maker (recycled baby onesie)

Collector (this is a Clarice Cliff "rural scene" dessert plate)

Hemmer and remodeler at the Beltway apartment

Gardener of many veggies

Sightseer (our local lake is empty)

Favorite Dutch home cooked stamppot meal (kale stamped in mashed potatoes with beef sausage)

Jammer of almost anything, even tomatoes

Blogger for fun and to rant

Amateur photographer

Greek yoghurt maker (I'm thrifty)

Crafter and Pinterester

And wife, mother, daughter, sister, sister-in-law, aunt, great-aunt, neighbor and just me. 

That is Wetcreek.

***I am blog partying with