Monday, January 18, 2016

simple woman's daybook

For Today... January 18, 2016
Outside my window... sky is clear, the sun is bright and the thermometer reads -3 degrees!
I am thinking... of what a strange winter it has been.  So strange in fact that there are robins still living in the area.  They should be long gone.
I am thankful... for God's peace which transcends all understanding.
I am wearing... layers for warmth!
I am creating... an organized, less cluttered home
I am going... to enjoy a blueberry tea while I finish this post.
I am wondering... what else I have to get rid of in this house.  I've had several successful listings on and it is good motivation to purge more.
I am reading... Still Alice by Lisa Genova and Tales from the Milestone by Ben Wajikra
I am hoping... to find a good read about the 1950's and 1960's.  Fiction or non-fiction.
I am learning... to wait patiently.  I have been a bit restless lately and can't seem to work it out. 
In my garden... the seeds and soil are covered by a blanket of snow.
In my kitchen... I am going to try to make Baked Potato Soup.  I just love ordering it when I eat out, so I thought, why not try to make a version at home.
In the homeschool room... we are joyfully entering unit 3 of our 4 unit curriculum.  The kids and I are surprised at how fast the first two units went by.  Here's hoping the last two move as quickly.
A favorite quote for today... Since today is Martin Luther King Jr. day, I must use one of my favorites by him; "Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase."
A peek into one of my days dreams... dreaming of the ocean today.  Preferably in a warm location.
One of my favorite things... going out to lunch with my girlfriends!
If you would like to read daybook entries from other simple women or join with an entry of your own, please visit Peggy at the Simple Woman's Daybook.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Teeny Tiny Pests

I thought I was in the clear.  I was trying very hard to avoid leaving fruit out on the counter during the summer months.  I wanted to enjoy the indoors without a fruit fly hovering nearby.  I thought I was in the clear.  It's October after all.

Then, one dark and dreary day, I was doing some extra cleaning.  You know the type of cleaning you do when all the main cleaning is finished?  Like finding the old cobwebs in the corners of your ceiling or taking all the glass shades from various light fixtures and giving them a good wash?  I was in the basement on this day and I decided to check the seldom used garbage can.  Upon opening the drawer, I was attacked!

Attacked may be a bit dramatic, but that's what it felt like at the time.  When I opened the garbage pullout I was swarmed by fruit flies.  You see, one of my children named 'Not me', threw an apple core into the garbage we don't collect every week.  That apple core probably sat in that can a good two weeks while a few fruit flies enjoyed a feast and did what they do best, multiplied.

I immediately did an internet search on home remedies for getting rid of fruit flies.  I tried this one and that one.  The one that did the trick for me is this one.

In my research many said to use apple cider vinegar, some said with dish soap.  I began with apple cider vinegar and dish soap and it wasn't yielding the results I wanted.  So, since we had some white wine out and the fruit flies were very attentive, I replaced the apple cider vinegar/soap concoction with straight up white wine.  I then covered the top with plastic wrap and poked a few holes in it.
This sat overnight and when I awoke the next morning, this is what I found.
My apologies, I know it's a bit gross, but look at all of them!  In just one night!  I'd say one or two more nights and I'll be singing goodbye to those teeny tiny pests.

Monday, October 5, 2015

simple woman's daybook

For Today... October 5, 2015
Outside my window... the sky is gray, the leaves on the maple tree are just turning red-brown and the geese are loudly flying overhead.

I am thinking... October would be a great month to blog every day.

I am thankful... to be living in an area that experiences four seasons.

I am wearing... black pants and a red t-shirt.

I am creating... a mess of a curtain project.  I am an amateur seamstress, very amateur and have met my match in the six curtain panels I am trying to sew.

I am going... to clean out the shelves in the storage room and make an overflow pantry area.

I am wondering... if I could sneak in a nap today.  This momma is tired this afternoon.
I am reading... To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.
I am hoping... to either pick my own apples or make it to the orchard and purchase some pre-picked so I can make apple pie and all sorts of apple yummies.
I am learning... how to deal with a difficult person.
In my garden... squash, pumpkin and tomatoes.

In my kitchen... a homemade fruit fly trap!
In the homeschool room... all is quiet.  The kids are finished for the day.
A favorite quote for today... All men should make coffee for their women.  It says it right in the bible….”HEBREW”.

One of my favorite things... the geese flying overhead in spring and especially fall.
A peek into one of my days...
Mason successfully dove for a 'sinker' for the first time at swimming lessons.
Thanks for visiting!  If you enjoyed my daybook and would like to read other daybooks from other simple women, please link up with Peggy at The Simple Woman's Blog.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Road Trip!

We took our very first RV road trip as a family!  Our destination was the Black Hills of South Dakota and we made it.  :)  If you know Patrick and I that is quite the accomplishment.  We are not the best at planning things and we tend to wing it a lot.

This was our home away from home.
Initially when we started to plan, we thought we could do 6-9 hour drives so that we could get to our destination that much faster.  Being a blogger, I looked to my blogging community for advice and found a woman who had this plan in mind as well and in hindsight she regretted that decision.  Her advice, don't drive more than four hours at a time.  Our first day we travelled a little over 9 hours and that was tough!  For the rest of our journey we tried to stay under four and it was much, much better.
A co-worker of Patrick's went on and sent him some links to offbeat tourist attractions we might encounter along the way.  Only driving four hours at a time allowed us to be relaxed and visit a few of those attractions.  First up, the Fiberglass Statue Mold Yard where we saw Santa (in July!) and a few more.

The Old Woman wasn't home.

Our first sighting of Mount Rushmore!
On the road again.
My honey and captain, pilot, driver of our big rig.

Road construction!  A necessary evil during the summer road trip.
The road construction was quite nerve wracking at times in the big RV.  My hat goes off to all the semi drivers that drive these highways day in and day out.  Road construction or no.
A few miles down the road we came across the Golden Stripe near Blue Earth, MN.  Also home to the Jolly Green Giant.  We probably would have zoomed past this little stripe had Mike not informed us of it's presence.  Thanks Mike!
Windmills as far as the eye can see.

Into the setting sun.
Yay!  South Dakota!
We probably should have stopped (like the family in the left of the photo) to take a proper picture, but we were getting tired and tired of traveling.
We stopped overnight at Snake Creek Recreational Area in South Dakota.  We pulled in after dark and didn't have a map of the campground readily available.  We ended up driving through the campground about four times with our loud diesel engine sometime around midnight!  Sorry everyone.  It was a great campground, however our site was not the best.  We didn't mind though since it was just a pit stop on our journey.
The next morning after breakfast we broke camp and headed out.  Little did we know this was waiting for us just around the corner.  The Missouri river and Lake Francis Case.


The weather was beautiful and hot!  We could already feel the heat at about 10am.  The sun was shining on us the whole trip.  Made for some squinty photos.
Road trip essentials.  Assorted drinks, sunglasses, ketchup, camera and toothbrush.
The view for miles and miles and miles.

The sight we saw more than any other.

Gas pump graveyard.
"O beautiful for heroes proved, In liberating strife."
~America the Beautiful by Katharine Lee Bates
Badlands National Park

Beauty clinging to the side of the hill.



We really enjoyed the badlands and I could share photo after photo.  Suffice it to say, if you are ever in the area, don't overlook this national park.

Raptors in the Badlands.
I thought of our nephew Josh.  We saw about eight or so of these Ford Raptors pictured above.  Most were covered in dirt.  Don't know where they were coming from or going to, but it looked like fun.
Marketing photo for Jayco? :)
Okay, I just have to post a few more photos.  It seemed as if every turn revealed a different facet of the badlands.  If we ever come through here again, we are definitely camping overnight.  As a little useless fact, I have now seen the badlands from the air and land, in the same year.  Woot, woot.

On to our final destination, the Black Hills of South Dakota.  We camped three nights at Horse Thief Campground and RV resort.  This campground was quiet, beautiful and centrally located.  We enjoyed our stay there and would recommend it to anyone traveling to the area.  In the interest of full disclosure, the pull-through RV sites are right on top of one another!  We were literally less than eight feet from our neighbors.  This would have been a huge downfall, except that we were never there except to eat dinner, have a campfire and sleep.  The back-in and tent sites offered much more space.   
Mount Rushmore.
Patrick and I saw Mount Rushmore together 19 years ago on our honeymoon and both remembered it being smaller then.  :)  We had the pleasure of celebrating our 19th wedding anniversary this year following in the footsteps of our honeymoon.  This time around we are older and wiser, we have four children and a dog, more gray hair (and in Patrick's case, less hair), we are still in love and are looking forward to 19 more years with each other.

The next day we rented a vehicle and drove Needles highway and enjoyed Wildlife Loop Road through Custer State park.  There are vehicle height and width restrictions for Needles highway.  For good reason.  The RV would have never fit through the tunnels let alone travel on the narrow, winding roads.

We could touch the walls on either side of the vehicle. 


Custer State Park

Our first buffalo sighting.

Momma and baby.

Buffalo Xing!

Why hello bearded fellow.  You are large and scary.
What do you do when a large buffalo stops in front of your vehicle?  You wait of course.
The view from the door of Gordon Stockade.
I see you!

One of my favorite's in Custer, SD.
Crazy Horse hasn't changed in the last 30 or so years.  :(

We may be getting a little stir crazy.
On one of our side trips we went to Custer, Deadwood, Lead and Sturgis.  Such fun history in some of these towns.  The kids and I had the pleasure of studying the old west this year in school and it was fun to see some things 'come to life'.
As with all good fun, it must come to an end.  We headed out of the Black Hills by way of Highway 14 in South Dakota.  If you do not enjoy traffic or people, this is the route for you.  You can literally see for miles in any direction and we could count on one hand the amount of cars we passed, or passed us.
The road less traveled.

Good night sun.
One of our stops was the Oahe Dam.  One of the worlds largest rolled earth dam.  Pretty impressive!
Oahe Dam


A little white house we came upon while trying to find the state park.
That my friends, was the sweetened condensed version of our first RV trip.  Will I take another?  You bet!  Am I happy to be home?  You bet.  As Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz has said, "There's no place like home."