Sunday, February 28, 2021

A Coloring Page

   I have been kinda in a "fog" this past week or so, can't get going with an art or craft project lately. Our weather has changed for the good but I am thinking allergy season has arrived already, and we are back to allot of clouds and fog as well. and I am still chilled so walking around with an extra layer

  I have my hand quilt project figured out, but I haven't been up to working on it-hopefully soon. Instead I am doing allot of reading.

  I am watching cpac live today waiting to listen to a certain person that will close the several days event.

  The other day my friend at Feather Garden shared her coloring page for us to download and use. So I made a copy on regular paper and dug out my regular color pencils.  Thank you for this as it got me into my craft room. I put it into one of my journals.

  A cool photo with reflections a couple days ago when we still had ice melting

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Thaw of the Lake has Begun

    Wow a couple days ago we were in the high 60's f with sunshine which really got the thaw started. Since then still below 30's most nights but getting up into the 40's and 50's with mostly sunshine.

    Late yesterday we could finally see lake water across from us. Photos beginning with yesterday and ending with early this morning.

   The lake began to freeze across from us towards us and it is thawing in the same way

This morning early

I brought home these flowers the other day when I went food shopping-to brighten up the so many cloudy and cold days-a celebration that spring is near I put them in a corner of the kitchen so I could enjoy them there. one flower broke off so I put it in the little hand porcelein "glass"

Sunday, February 21, 2021

Pretty Sunrise Over a Frozen Lake

   During this cold spell we have also been overcast and cloudy with very few sunrises visible.

   Yesterday the same but then later the sun came out for most of the day. That was really nice to lift our spirits and start the melting-not too much yet in the lake though.

  This morning opposite-a lovely sunrise, now we are cloudy and grey again with a little wind that makes it chilly for shoveling more snow.

   These photos are shown in order

Happy Sunday everyone-stay warm

Saturday, February 20, 2021

A New Recipe Melting Begins & Juvenile Eagle Visitor

   Wow second post in one day haha, my previous post is a movie share if you are interested and the post before that is a list of books I have been reading. and speaking of books I just got in a book I just ordered from ebay a few days ago, a suggestion from my friend at Hill Top-- Hannah The Complete Story. It is a hardcover, like new, free shipping for $4.00 couldn't pass it up. I am anxious to read her story.  Right now though I am reading a book by Hugh G Allison Culloden Tales. Stories from Scotland's most famous battlefield. This one came highly recommended from one of the Outlander groups I follow. It is a good read so far.

   Finally we are slowly getting into a melt down. With ice and almost a foot of snow on top of that I am thankful it is beginning to melt. Sunshine all day today is helping too. I didn't take photos to share but I did more shoveling on our steep driveway to make room for more melting. I shoveled out our garbage container so the pickup will be easy to get to-it is now full as we have had no pick up for over 2 weeks now.  The lake is melting a bit in areas as well. We are still with below freezing temperatures in the evenings, so I am thinking the lake is refreezing. The snow is very heavy now and ice underneath so more of a chore to shovel.

  The room off of the kitchen area, where I have my weaving loom set up, cookbooks on shelves, a wall of stand alone storage pieces that are all vintage, and my computer desk is now a little warmer today. For some odd reason there is no heat vents coming into this room, and with two walls with windows this room was really cold to sit at my computer during the super cold days.  It feels much better today.

  Early this morning we had a juvenile eagle visit us. He sat very high in the trees, so being down below in the house we were really looking up at him. He stayed around for several hours. I zoomed in, as I didn't feel like bundling up and walking up the stairs to get a closer photo.

  A few days ago I found a small pork roast in the freezer. We had 3 meals with it and still had a big chunk left. So I went online searching for ideas to use with pork.  I ran into this one Pork and Sausage Jambalaya With Black Eyed Peas

   This was soooo delicious that the recipe is a keeper. I changed the cooking time around a little bit as the recipe uses fresh pork and mine was already cooked. I had peppers and one large onion left in the frig. I had the chicken stock or bone broth on the pantry-I grabbed the bone broth and I had the andouille in the freezer.  I have allot of herb blends in my spice cupboard but not cajun seasoning. So I looked up the spices to make it and I had everything. 

I didn't have the measurements for each spice so I just sprinkled a good layer over everything with each one and then stirred it all in-the flavors were soooo good
I did add in a little of the crushed red pepper flakes to add a bit more heat.

We have not been eating much in carbs the last few years, but once in awhile like for this dish I will use rice sometimes-it can be a healthy grain. I love this brand-found it amazon I think, but this one is whole grain brown that has been sprouted first and then dried. So this is higher in proteins than just regular brown rice. It also cooks up really nice a bit fluffy.

I did not have any canned black eyed peas-which we don't really care for anyways-so I grabbed a can of white kidney beans instead  I had sweet peppers and also one poblano pepper left in the frig.

  I asked Hubs what he felt like for a baked good that I will bake for us tomorrow morning. Of course he asked for another apple crisp-nope totally out of fruit except for 3 fresh lemons and grapes. He suggest a lemon meringue pie which I might have just enough lemons for or he says how about angel food cakes??  So angel food cakes it is. 

  Hope all of my readers in these very cold wintry areas are warming up too. It does feel amazing today.

A Movie on Saturday

   I have not shared a movie in awhile, so when I caught this one on the tv this past week, I knew I wanted to share it.

   Richard Gere movies are usually very moving with life messages and in the end I am crying. 

     We have the movie channels as my husband doesn't watch any shows with too many commercials any more. I hardly ever find something I want to watch, I scan through and usually nothing catches my interest-but this one did.

    It's an old movie that I had not heard of before, filmed in 2000

                                          Autumn in New York

 More about the movie here

Friday, February 19, 2021

Books I have Been Reading

   During this cold snap I have been doing allot of reading. I can't concentrate on my hand quilt project, or an art project as I am a person that worries too much-always have. One of the reasons I did not want children-worrying would drive me crazy.

   This ice here is not a good thing-the docks are not set up to "go with the ice" as it melts. Hubs has tried to free the cables but the weather is so frigid he should not be out there with his heart and lung health concerns, he came back really sick from yesterday's mission. (about 15 minutes is all it took) He did get one of the cables loosened.   I am giving him Vit C echinachea-goldenseal, oreganol, and blackberry extract (sugar free)  A hot shower, a shot of whiskey and lots of covers when he came back in the house He is feeling better this morning at least not worse.

  I thought I would share some books I have been reading

    I enjoy going through Erika's book list each month and usually pick up at least one. I check kindle e books first as I really do not have much bookshelf space left for the actual books.  I do have a limit on what I will pay for an ebook as well. I prefer under $3.99 will go up to $5.99 on occasion but that is my limit. My kindle must have allot of money on it right now even with these lower prices haha.

  A couple of the books on her list were just too expensive for me those authors usually have a publisher handling their sales-I just will not pay the $7.99, 8.99 and much higher for an ebook.  Do you have a limit on what you will spend for an ebook??  I have not had the convenience of using a library since we retired-they either charge a fee for the use of their library if you don't live in that city or county or they are just too far away to be practical So I  buy books instead.

  I don't read murder mysteries very often but I have read a few now this month.

Erika suggested Murder at Melrose Court by Karen Baugh Menuhin and I really enjoyed that one. I also picked up the second book in the series The Black Cat Murders but after that these ebooks get too expensive for me.

She also suggested The Wrinkle in Time series by Madeleine L'Engle which intrigued me. I thought perhaps my husband would like this set. Searching around online  I found a like new boxed set of this series that were like new and at a really good price. I have not read these yet.  I have found if I am looking for an actual book allot of times I find them on Ebay. Many charities are selling like new books for under the normal sale price online.

I have also branched out from amazon and ebay to abe books, thrift books and others to compare prices.

  I just finished the second of a series that I really like It is about an underwater investigative unit that works with the police departments in Florida. I found this one interesting as I know nothing about diving, or crocodiles and such. The author is very detailed in his descriptions, the characters are real and the one I just finished was a cliff hanger til the very end. The author is Andrew Mayne. The first book in this series is The Girl Beneath the Sea which the price is very low, and the second book I just finished is Black Coral. If you like his stories his third in the series is up for pre order at a reduced price as ebooks on kindle.

Another author I have grown to enjoy is Belle Ami. Her series are all very different which is not the case with most authors I have read so far.  Her Out of Time thriller series is one of my favorites. and her Tip of Spear thriller series was totally out of my normal read but the series was like watching a movie.  I saved a series of hers to read last as I wasn't sure I wanted to read it. It was her first published books, another thriller, murder mystery but allot of erotica that I didn't really want to read. I skipped over most of those but the plot was excellent. I had contacted her about something and she wrote me back that day-and told me she was planning on re writing that series as it didn't meet her standards now.

This last book I want to share is just really nice and am happy I purchased it. This is a gorgeous hard cover with beautiful photos. This is not a book of how to's but more of a meditative read-if that is the right way to put it. There are several books out now about slow stitches also sashiko. I was looking at sashiko books but settled on this one instead.  In the title it reads Slow Stitch-mindful and contemplative textile art by Claire Wellessley-Smith.   I have read half way through the book now, it's calming, and contemplative.  The author did show how she dyes threads with natural plant materials which I have not yet tried, I may do that.

What are you reading this winter?


Thursday, February 18, 2021

We Are Still Iced In-videos

   This will be a winter to remember for sure. The lake of the ozarks does not freeze over like this very often.

   We have been sooooo cold and we got about a foot of snow too. So the lake is frozen over with lots of snow on top.  I have managed to keep the steps and a path up to the  mail box cleared. We discovered too that our rural circle road here does not get plowed. I was not planning on going any where in these temperatures-not good for my old car either. We are almost out of fresh foods though so hoping if the weather man is right and we will jump up into the 50's over the weekend-I can go food shopping early next week. Wow that is quite a jump going from negatives to teens during the day just before that.

  The concern now is that the lake will be getting lowered soon as they need the water to make electricity-I think I understand that right. Bagnell Dam generates the electric for this area.  Also the lake always gets lowered now through early spring anyways to handle the spring flooding.  So in this bitter cold, and high drifts of snow Hubs needs to go out to the dock this morning, to see if he can manage loosening the cables so they don't snap as the ice shifts etc.  scary stuff for me I worry about everything.

  I took a couple photos and videos-excuse our dirty windows they have spider webs on them

  This first photo was taken from a window in the room my desk computer is in-it looks toward our neighbor on the right. This flock of geese were resting on the ice and snow

First two videos are of the lake totally frozen over

This one was taken Valentine's Day just before the ice enclosed our dock-boat and sea wall

After all these videos were taken we got allot of snow about a foot with drifts when I shoveled the path. Yesterday we got another inch or so.  I saw a photo in a group I follow for my area of the lake-and there was a pontoon boat that got loose and is now iced in sideways in the middle of the lake. Allot of damages are predicted for boats and docks as the ice shifts and melts. fingers crossed we will be ok.

The gas and electric company has asked us to conserve energy-no usage of extra appliances-like slow cookers, washing machines etc, not to use much hot water, and to lower the thermostat. I wish we would have had a working wood stove here at the lake house so we could feel warmer. I keep the thermostat at 72 which just keeps the chill off in the air but I lowered it to 69 to conserve.  I have been soooo thankful we did not lose our electric-as of yet.

This will all be a memory soon I am thinking  stay warm and safe everyone. I have done allot of reading during this time.

Update 9 am:  I stand corrected I went up to mail in the box to go out and our road got plowed-must have been pretty late in the day as I didn't hear him-perhaps the garbage will get picked up next week-been 2 weeks now with no pick up do to cold and our road.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

The Science of "Masking"

    I have done allot of listening and reading over the past year on the wearing of masks. If one remembers from the very beginning, even many doctors including Faucci were saying the science is not there that masks work. (later he has pushed masks) 

    What really Does work is the constant washing of hands and sanitizing surfaces especially in the work place or at home if you are in and out allot.

   I just ran into this article "Masking: A Careful Review of the Evidence"  which I believe is a really good read-very long but I read through most all of it. If you believe in the Science (or if you don't) I feel this is a really good read here  from AIER (American Institute  for Economic Research) 

   It covers allot of material, even how did "they" come up with the 6 ft distancing here in the states while in other countries the social distancing was much less

  I am not pushing any political view points here-so I will leave comments on unless this changes to politics.  This is information that for me was good to read and I can decide for myself what I think about it. Most of this is what I have believed all along.

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Happy Valentine's Day Everyone & The Deep Freeze Continues

   Happy Valentine's Day all, we are still in a deep freeze here and the temps are still going lower and lower each night and day. We are now in the negatives at night for the next few evenings.

   Baking is always good when it's cold. Our home is keeping up, but there are spots in the house that are quite chilly. We have not lost electric so that is an absolute good thing as we have no back up heat source here at the lake. Before we always had our wood stoves.

  I baked up a half batch of my favorite vanilla cut out cookies that I bake up at Christmas. I dug out my heart cutters and just finished up this morning. I changed to gluten free flour, mostly keto sweeteners except for the little bit of corn syrup that is used in this recipe. I think this ingredient helps to keep the cookies softer.  I found a keto frosting that turned out really good recipe here  If you want to go dairy free just use a nut milk or even water I would think would work. 

  The sprinkles are not keto They turned out pretty. I put some in the cookie jar and froze two packages for later. They taste really good too

As I mentioned we are in a very very deep freeze that continues getting worse each day. It is so bitter, and we are still icy on our circle drive that the garbage pick up did not come last week, and we have not gone out. I need to get to the grocery store soon as we are running out of fresh foods. It will be several days yet before we begin to get out of this cold cycle.

I follow a group on Facebook that is about the doings on the west side area of the lake which is where we are. Many coves and low water areas are now totally froze in.  I grabbed a few photos. 

   You can click on the photos for larger viewing. This first one you can see the iced areas in front of the lake -- that you can see towards the back.  

     We are on a main channel, one of the reasons so much traffic in front of us during the summer but we wanted deep water. We do have ice around our dock a bit


I took this photo of our neighbor to the right of us-you can see the huge ice block that the waves splashing onto his cable have caused

  When I look out our windows straight ahead, there is a cove in there-that is all iced in. Not sure what damage this will cause the docks.  I took a couple videos I will share later,  need to upload them to my you tube for better viewing.

For our 2 pm main meal I guess I have an odd combination, I found in the frezer chicken soup that I made a couple weeks ago and one more bag of shrimp so I am serving those with tossed salad and brought out a bottle of Yellow Tail Cabernet Sauvignon  Soup sounds good cause I am chilly and perfect day for shrimp.

Stay warm and safe everyone, and I love the valentine cards I received from two of my pen pals-thank you.

Friday, February 12, 2021

Page for AJJ Heavy Metal

 Good morning everyone,

   Still very very cold here and now we have wind and ice. This is to last for the next 7 days or so, colder over the weekend in the minus digits. We just are no longer used to these deep freezes.

   I decided to take a break from reading this morning and see if I could come with a page for AJJ's Heavy Metal challenge. I had the idea of doing some hand sewing with metallic threads, just needed to find a magazine photo.

  I found the perfect page from a very old Ideals magazine. It looks like a hand drawing even. So No I did Not draw this pretty bird.

  I grabbed a couple metallic threads (I have a big bag from my Mom's sewing stash) and stitched around the edge, and then found a metallic pen by Crayola-most of you know I am not crazy about white backgrounds. I may go over that a little bit more.

     I just wanted to do a little something again for the challenge.

   When it's really cold outdoors, a perfect time to bake. I emptied the refrigerator of the remaining apples-pears-and blueberries and made a very deep crisp I used gluten free oats, gluten free flour, butter, coconut oil, and keto sweeteners for the topping

  Stay warm everyone

Monday, February 8, 2021

Very Cold Week Coming Up

    We have been spoiled for a few years here in SW Missouri with mostly light winters, snows that don't stick around forever, and not allot of ice.  This year my area has gotten slammed with ice (we just missed it) a little snow not allot really, but very very dreary and gloomy this winter, with very few days of any sunshine.

   This week will be brutal-in the minus degrees f. With high temps in the low single digits f.  Over the weekend we got about 2 inches of snow-no worries except there is ice under the snow. Getting up to the mail box can be a big challenge with ice-up the numerous steps and then up the pretty steep driveway to get to the mailbox.  Well it is winter after all and most of you are probably laughing right now with much worse conditions.😀

    The steep driveway is a new one for me, I have always done the snow shoveling if it needs it-Husband is not in good enough health for it. I don't mind really, gets me outdoors right now. I was really sliding on the hill this morning so I needed to dig out my 40 year old snow boots that Larry bought me when we first got married. I didn't own a decent pair at the time and we lived in northern Illinois for many years before retirement. (very cold and lots of snow there) 

   These boots are very warm and I did have good traction on the hill. That is some ice melt in the bucket-I am not that crazy about using this product, being so close to the lake, so once I run out of it am going to use plain salt like ice cream salt instead.

   Last week I did get my package from the Etsy store with a variety of needles to choose from. I probably went overboard but I needed some nicer needles for the wool applique project too. I picked up a new leather thimble as well-it sits low on your finger and you push the needle with the flat of your finger.  I don't wear thimbles very often-they drive me crazy haha. But will give this one a go.

   These needles are from Japan and very good quality

   I settled on using the heavier embroidery needles.  I am having a difficult time getting comfortable working on this hand quilting project. With top and bottom layers being quality flannels the quilt is rather thick. (I also had taken the quilt off of the frame and am now working with a very large wooden hoop)   I have taken out my stitches several times now. The animal stencils are not going to work out well for me-so much turning the whole quilt in the large hoop around-it's heavy and cumbersome, and with the thickness of the layers not getting good looking stitches around the animals. 
   So after several attempts I scrapped that idea, and have gone to straight stitches within each block. On the 4 patch blocks I am doing horizontal lines and then the block next to it up and down lines. Perhaps an x in the large blocks. Once I get a rhythm going, I think it will work out. I still have to turn after each row to go back the other direction but with straight lines will be easier, more even stitches and look nicer.  

   I have needed to let this project set a bit as I was getting frustrated with it.

   Over the weekend I made another one of our favorites-keto NY Cheesecake. This morning I cooked up a batch of keto vanilla ice cream so we'll have ice cream in the freezer again. I will churn that this afternoon.

  With the dreary days here we have not seen many sunrises as they were being covered with the clouds. Yesterday though we had a bright sunrise.

  Since it was so cold I took these photos from indoors through the large window-I have not had a warm enough day lately to wash the outside of those windows.

  This was such a very bright sunrise which we do not see that often as it comes up

  After a couple hours we were back to the sun being hidden behind the thick cloud cover.

   I made a big pot of northern white beans and ham over the weekend as well. I found one more package of ham chunks in the freezer. I added lots of different herbs, a bay leaf, and a big handful of dried onions. Perfect for a cold wintry week.

   I am really enjoying writing to my new pen pals, and finding snail mail in my mailbox-makes me smile. If anyone else would like to be pen pals or exchange cards through out the year you can contact me through my contact link on my page. and just a note to my pen pals over the pond I have mailed some out last week don't know how long it will take to get to you.

  Have a good new week-stay warm and safe-Hugs from the Lake

Found this image online