Sunday, July 31, 2022


Another week has flown by and here were are, AUGUST is tomorrow?  Where DOES the time go?  Well, time for some yummy food and some funny Hobart!

2nd Man made this the other night.  Chicken and mushroom fettuccine Alfredo.  He makes a simple Alfredo sauce and adds cream of mushroom soup and some sautéed mushrooms.  It was very good.

And here is Hobart acting silly.  When I come home from work he wakes up from wherever he is and comes over to me and falls over on his side and expects a belly rub and a back rub with my foot after I take off my shoes.  He loves it and we love him and so we indulge him because...


Saturday, July 30, 2022


Off to the farm today (after dropping off my Jeep at the shop).   It's hot again.  Farmshark at the end of post.

We need more rain
This was last Saturday at the Farm.  Now we have had some scattered showers a couple of days but from what 2nd Family has said, not much fell at the farm.  We'll see if what did fall greened things up some.  I might have to mow, might not.  We'll see.

Last Saturday at 3:46pm:

103 temp
104 official high
Felt like 115.

Wasp nest
We were out of wasp spray last weekend so the plan this weekend other than watering, is to take care of this nest built INSIDE the porch fan.  I'll walk around and look for others too.

Every year during Shark Week on Discovery Channel, we find some photos of the elusive farm shark that appears from time to time at the farm...

Farmshark in the yard
Um, yeah, I'm good...I can go the shed/barn later.


Friday, July 29, 2022


Regular readers know that I have a favorite place to look for bargains...our downstairs trash area!  Our building has trash chutes on every floor and they feed into a separate room, but for boxes and other things that people can't put in the chute, there is an area (indoor) near the loading dock where people can put the things they don't want.  I've found quite a few cool items over the last few years.

Here is one of the latest!

(farmshark photo for today is at the bottom of the post)

After some research, we found that this is called a "hostess/teller stand".  Used, obviously by the name, to have signs saying "enter here" or "section reserved" or something like that.  I found it next to the dumpster but  it was loose and leaning.  I thought "well, it's broken, that makes sense why they dumped it".

Then as I picked it up, I realized it was just the pole that was loose.  I held the pole, reached underneath and tightened the nut and then turned the pole the last bit of the way to tighten.  Perfect!  It raises up and down and the sign portion can be vertical or horizontal.  

They sell online for anywhere from about $60 to $100.  It's a bit very dusty but is nothing that some paper towels and cleaner won't fix.  I was even thinking it could be painted in maybe a distressed, farmhouse style.  But what to use it for?

It would be fun to print a dinner menu and put in it or maybe even a special note to display at certain times or events.  It'll be fun.  We'll repurpose it!


Every year during Shark Week on Discovery Channel, we find some photos of the elusive farm sharks that appear from time to time at the farm...

NO, not Bill!  Stay 
away from the truck Mr. Great White, we need this vehicle.


Wednesday, July 27, 2022


The farm truck watering method seems to be keeping the pear tree happy.  For those who missed it, this is a pear tree we planted about 8 years ago and ignored because we changed the location for our fruit trees.  This one kept growing and is now bearing a large amount of fruit.  It's not near a watering source so we came up with a way to water it HERE.

It seems to be working.  Here they are this past weekend.  They are changing to a nice color.  Still pretty small though, not sure if that's because they are the first real harvest or the lack of steady watering early on.  Even if they stay small and we still get a bunch, we'll use them for something!

We saw some videos online that said you can tell a pear is ripe when you lift the fruit up and it just pops off.  I did that a few times and these all came off.  They still don't seem like they are at the right stage.  It's still a bit early but of course maybe our heat has accelerated the process?  Whatever it might be, I stopped at seven and brought them home.  They are currently in a paper bag on the table near near the window.

Still might be too early, but since we have already pulled these, we'll wait to see what happens.


Every year during Shark Week on Discovery Channel, we find some photos of the elusive farm sharks that appear from time to time at the farm...

Who knew Hammerhead sharks like pears?
Stay away from our pear tree!


Monday, July 25, 2022


So...I was watering the orchard area and I noticed movement out of the corner of my eye.  Something stood up and came out from under the shade of the trees on the property behind us.

At first I thought it was a fawn because there are quite a few deer on that property and it was smallish and tawny brown.  Then I realized it was a young coyote!

It looked at me, I looked at it and we stared at each other for what seemed like a long time.  It turned away and ran off another direction, periodically looking back.

It's not in this photo, this was taken after it ran off and I resumed watering so we could show you where I was and where it was. I think the watering and my timer going off after each watering was enough to make it run the other direction.

This is not the same coyote of course, but this is one we captured on the trail cam a couple of months back, one of many captures on the trail cam.  This one is walking across the front yard and down the driveway.

Look at the deep green, sigh.

Here are two more coming back from the other direction on another day.  We always hear that they are as scared of us as we are of them, but it's still a bit unnerving to just have one about 25 feet away.

We're gonna have to add this to the front yard!

Every year during Shark Week on Discovery Channel, we find some photos of the elusive farm sharks that appear from time to time at the farm...

Forget snakes, this is reason enough to stop and turn around on the mower for sure!


Sunday, July 24, 2022


 Another week has flown by.

It is so hot, but we're relaxing inside where it is cool and we are eating well.

2nd Man made pork medallions and gravy over rice.  It's always so good.  He browns the pork (tenderloins cut into pieces), removes them and makes a brown gravy in the pan and puts them back in...

...then it is served with rice.  We put some gravy in the bottom of the dish, put the rice on top and then some of the pork and a little more gravy on top.  Goodness in every bite.  We had a salad on the side.  So delicious.

Regular readers know that we are fans of Shark Week on Discovery Channel and of course it starts tonight.

You just never know where a shark might show up in a photo this week...

 Speaking of, here is Hobart sleeping on the towels that I pulled out to get ready for laundry.  He fell asleep and was not even phased by the Great White shark that was next to him.  He can sleep through anything as long as we keep him comfortable because...


Friday, July 22, 2022


 Bill the truck gets a new handy use...

Watering vehicle!

Last month, we posted HERE about the pear tree we have that's covered in fruit even though we never watered it.  Well, apparently, that works great when Mother Nature is helping with periodic heavy rains, but this year we are in an epic drought and have a tree covered in fruit for the first time.

We are not going to lose that without a fight. 

The tree isn't anywhere near a watering source, no faucets or even electricity for some sort of pump.  So we had to think outside the box.  That's when we realized the truck could help with that.

We decided on 5 gallon buckets and bought these three and figured that would work for what we needed.  

I put them in the back of the truck and filled them up, each one holding 5 gallons of water.  With the truck bed, no worries if water sloshed out while driving, like if it was in the back of my Jeep, ha!

Once they were filled, I drove the truck to the water faucet.  You can see the path here.  Because of the dry weather, no worries of getting the truck stuck.  Of course, if it was wet enough to worry about driving the truck back there, we wouldn't be worrying about watering, so there's that.

I drove to the pear tree, backed up and let the lift gate down.  Then I just grabbed each bucket of water and poured it around the base of the tree.  I did this for the three buckets and went back and refilled them and came back again.  That's 30 gallons of water for the tree.  That should be good during this hot, dry weather and help the pears to get bigger and juicier.

It's the best we could come up with without having any water source near the tree and wow, it works perfectly and becomes another great use for the truck.

As a reward for his hard work...

...we bought Bill some bling, LOL!  We think he looks cool with these fuzzy dice hanging from the mirror.

Thursday, July 21, 2022


This is an overdue post.

The peach tree (replacement) was finally planted...several weeks ago! We forgot to post about it but it wasn't planted in this super heat and drought, in fact, look at the was still green then, ha.

Cleaning out a raised bed
It took me a couple of weekends.  First, I had to get the old one dug up.  It had technically died and didn't come back for two seasons.  I cut it down last year in anticipation of getting a replacement.  Then it sprouted back at the base.  Oops!  Can you grow a peach bush?  Well, whatever it would have become, it never would have bloomed because the new growth came in below the graft which means it no fruiting.

Better to start fresh...the peach was the last one on our list to plant in our orchard area.

After it was gone, I had to let the bed sit for a couple of weekends while watering it.  That way, I could get get the soil loosened as well and manually pull up any extraneous roots that were still in the ground.   

I added soil, turned it all to loosen it and then planted the tree in its new home.

Peach tree
Here it is right after I planted it and mulched it.  It was windy the day of the photo, hence the moving leaves.

Peach tree in raised bed
Here it is a couple of weekends later.  Looking good after being in the ground and it even had a few small new leaves coming out.  When we water all the trees, we give this one extra water so it helps it in this heat.  So far, so good!

We know it's still a couple years away from fruiting but at least we're back on track for peaches.  You all might remember THIS POST from a few weeks back when we got some peaches from a coworker's tree.  We love them and hope ours grows the same way and we'll eventually have enough for some peach cobblers!

Tuesday, July 19, 2022


 ...make lemon pudding!

If you saw yesterday's post HERE, we had another small harvest of blueberries.  Sadly though, not enough for a wonderful pie or even blueberry pancakes or muffins so 2nd Man said, what about lemon pudding?

Lemons and blueberries are made for each other.

We made the pudding and poured some into serving glasses and dropped in some of those wonderful frosty sapphires, er, blueberries!

We added some whipped cream on top of the berries and then topped that with the rest of the lemon pudding for a layered effect.

All that was left was to pop them in the fridge overnight to set up and just before serving, topped them with some more whipped cream and, of course, the last of the blueberries.

It was a quick and easy way to use our small blueberry harvest and literally enjoy the 'fruits of our labor', ha.

And it was so good!

Monday, July 18, 2022


Look, we have even more blueberries!

Blueberries on the bush
First time we had ever had this many on the bush ripe at the same time.  It still wasn't enough for a pie or muffins, ha, but hey, we're getting there.  So pretty to see them on the bushes like this. They look like frosty blue sapphires in the sunlight!

Blueberries in a jar
These are the ones that made it back home.  I will confess to eating a handful on the way back.  Hey, they were good and I was hungry!  I told 2nd Man they didn't all make it.  He understood and then said "why do we have bird netting if you're going to eat what the birds would have?"

Hmmm...he's not wrong, LOL!

Sunday, July 17, 2022


It's a hot Sunday, time for some good food for the foodies and some Hobart for the kitty lovers!

This was on our Instagram the other day so some of you may have seen it.  This is "Sopa de Fideo" that 2nd Man made.  It's a tomato based soup with beef and fideo, a thin Mexican noodle similar to angel hair or thin spaghetti.  I made some tacos dorados, which are corn tortillas with queso fresco inside, making them similar to a quesadilla.  You dip them into the fideo as you eat.

The next time we make them, I'll take pics and create a post for the recipe.  It's Mexican comfort food.

Here's something Hobart does.  When I take off my shorts and t-shirt for bed, he will sleep on them overnight.  He will do the same thing if 2nd Man leaves his clothes on the floor.  We guess he likes to be close to us and while we could pick them up and put them in the hamper, we don't, because...


Saturday, July 16, 2022


We had some rain at the farm!

The pin below is the farm during the storm.

It came through Thursday afternoon and dropped a little under an inch according to the rain gauge.

The ground soaked it up like a sponge...

...and look at this.  This picture is from from today and the yard has greened up quickly.

Of course...

...we're back to the usual forecast.  No rain and we're back to 100 or more.

The green will indeed be fleeting.

Friday, July 15, 2022


So last week at lunch...I was at the grocery store doing the shopping and when I unloaded my cart into the car, I pushed it back to the corral area.  There was a cart there that had a plant in it that someone had forgotten.

I pointed it out to an employee and they looked and said "well, if they come back, we will give them another one or refund them".  The manager came and said since this was already paid for and did I want it?

I looked at the tag and said "YES!"  It's a banana plant, the "Dwarf Cavendish" variety.

It rode back to work with me and then home.

And finally to the farm.

It's a pretty plant, as bananas go we suppose, with the mottled maroon stripes/spots on the leaves.  It's doing well and there is a large new leaf about to unfold.

A quick check shows that this is a great variety for our area.  It is hardy down to 20 degrees, only matures to between 8' and 10' tall, and will even produce while in a large container.

Once we figure out where to plant this one and the others we got from a coworker, we might end up with a banana plantation in the country, LOL!

Wednesday, July 13, 2022


We were looking at photos from the trail cam on the porch that points toward the front yard.  No animals around much anymore but we did notice this.

Here are two photos that show the extremes:

This is from May.  Look how lush and green it is.

Well, was...

...because here it is this month.

Dry and brown.

There have been a few scattered showers, but it seems like it is usually so hot and humid, it evaporates upon hitting the ground, ha. Most of Texas in in some sort of drought status.  The county the farm is in is in "extreme drought" and "exceptional" is creeping ever so closer.

We've had a few power problems in the Houston area due to capacity problems but nothing long lasting, thankfully.  ERCOT, the Texas power grid management people (don't get us started on that group) asked people to refrain from using things like dishwashers or electric dryers during the peak daylight hours and so far, it's kept the grid from widespread failure.  We'll see how that goes as this heatwave lasts longer.

Stay cool wherever you are!