Another Garden Tour

This time I was able to tour my friend Judy’s garden a few miles from my house…..and I didn’t need my purse again! Ha!

Admittedly I missed the height of blooming time. It I wanted to visit Mike and Judy when they were home with their dogs, Gus and Claire. If you’ve been a long time reader you’ll remember I used to board Gus, a yellow English lab and Claire, a Cairn Terrier and I think they might have even remembered me. I sure remember them!

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I Am So Lucky!

This morning Reed and I headed south 100 miles to Iowa State University to visit Rieman Gardens, a 17 acre plot of gardens, pathways, wind sculptures, gazeboes, rose gardens, experimental vegetable gardens, children’s gardens, porticos, potted plants, a butterfly garden, a tropical horticulture building and more I can’t even name! We got 30 minutes away from home and stopped for gas and I HAD LEFT MY PURSE AT HOME!!!!!!

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It’s A Wrap

The last day of the fair is celebrated with a church service and today the theme was Christmas in July. It was pointed out during the service that the background noises were not unlike those in the manger – cattle lowing, sheep, chickens and shepherd boys, all together.

We sang Christmas carols and worshipped together as a community.

Both Vera and June wanted to sit on Grandma’s lap at the same time.

My poor little hen and chicks in the rock only earned a white ribbon – the rain was very hard on it the week before the fair but I thought planting in a rock would make an interesting display. The judge didn’t agree with me, I guess.

There’s always next year. Just think about all the beautiful plants here at home that could have gone to the fair and done so much better.

Late this afternoon was the greased pig contest and then all exhibits are released. Such a busy week -this week will be the start of canning hot dog relish. I will share the recipe and pictures for any of you who also have cucumbers, peppers and onions in your garden.

Poultry Show at the Fair

I learned more in 2-1/2 hours this morning than in the last 2-1/ years! Watching the poultry judge go from cage to cage, asking the 4-Her to take each chicken out of the cage and watching to see if they took each one out correctly was fascinating. All the broilers were judged before the ducks and the fancy breeds. Here are Reed and Myra in front of Alta, Edna and Eunice’s 3 separate pens.

When the judge finally got around to Reed, he asked several questions about Eunice.

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On to the Iowa State Fair!

Nolan’s gas engine is going to the Iowa State Fair. I just got this picture.

This was an old gas engine that his grandpa had in the shed – dirty, dusty and didn’t work. Nolan took it completely apart and overhauled it – amazing! And now it has qualified to go to the state fair next month. Wish I could provide more details but I don’t understand engines.

And just a note to all of you who are congratulating me – the only project I helped with was Reed’s quilt and his chickens. That does not mean I’m not proud of all three kids but parents and grandparents played a big part in their success, much more than me. Nobody could be any more pleased than me however.

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It’s A Sweep!

What an exciting morning at the Hancock County District Fair! Here is the building where all the 4-H projects are being judged. Sixty years ago this was the roller skating rink with open air windows all the way around. Roller skating parties were the thing when I was a kid and pre-teen age. We roller skated for hours -around and around, sometimes even backwards or in a long line – you didn’t want to be the last one on the line when turning the corners! There were reverse skates, moonlight skates and couples skate – it was like waiting to be asked to dance! Was roller skating popular when you were a kid or was this strictly a Midwest thing? Oh, what memories to step into this building,

I remember thinking it was so big — ha!

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Saturday Night

It’s a gorgeous summer night on the porch – 78 degrees, not much wind at all, the cicadas are pretty loud and the tall corn across the road is rustling in the breeze. There’s a pair of mourning doves always in the yard – I love their soft whoot whoot – did you know they mate for life and are always together? Very sweet! The corn is too tall to measure so I’m just going to guess 7-8 feet.

Tomorrow RAGBRAI starts in the central part of the state. For those who don’t know what those letters stand for, it’s Register’s Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa. Register refers to the Des Moines Register newspaper and the ride across the state was started by two newspaper writers 46 years ago. The bicyclists start on the west side of the state, dipping their wheels into the Missouri River and ride 50-100 miles day, stopping in host towns to spend the nights until one week later when they dip their wheels in The Mississippi River along the east edge of Iowa. (No matter what I do, my IPad insists on capitalizing The. Grrrr…). People travel thousands of miles to ride in RAGBRAI! I wish I had trained to ride it when I was young – Connie rode it one year with Roy – when she was younger.

I know I can’t shut up about this orchid cactus but honestly, I have never ever seen it bloom like this!

Nothing delights me more when I’m porch sitting than seeing my chickens wander by looking for bugs or just out for a stroll.

This is Fred with Debbie, Delores, Lola and a Naked Neck girl. The young girls stay close to the barn – they have never ventured as far as the house. It they’re a busy bunch of teenage girls, running from place to place looking for bugs and if somebody finds one and chirps about it, their friends make a beeline to the spot.

Remember the black kitten that Reed named after himself? I’d been calling him Reedo Burrito and he has disappeared – for over a week now. Mama Kitty and the two girls, Darla and Danielle, are sometimes gone for a day or so but never for 10 days! I hope he comes home soon – I’m worried about him.

Yesterday it was time for Sister Act to perform at Concord where Becky and I provide music for the monthly birthday party. We do lots of old folk songs and hymns that the residents remember and we encourage everyone to sing along. A favorite is On Top of Spaghetti to the tune of On Top of Old Smokey.

Becky sang a favorite of mine Maybe Today – I get goosebumps listening to that one.

It’s been a day of housework – does this look familiar? Yup, my fridge quit cooling and after the repairman came, he suggested I manually defrost it and it would start cooling again until he came back with a sensor part. Just a word here about this very expensive KitchenAid Frig – it’s not quite 6 years old and we’ve had lots of problems with it not cooling. This is not the first time – any comments from anyone who also has a KitcheAid frig?

And remember that Disappearing Four Patch made with 30’s prints? Finally it is quilted and bound!

That’s it for Saturday night. Next week is our fair – it will be a busy few days!

A Stormy Afternoon in SE Iowa

Just a quick post to let you know the tornadoes that occurred in Iowa yesterday took place in Bondurant, Marshalltown and Pella, about 3hours southeast of Garner. Forest City had another 4″ of rain flooding the golf course once again but we had only about 1-1/2″. More later.