Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy Fourth!

This is a good day to remember how blessed we are to live in this great country.  I know we get disillusioned with politics and all that goes with it but when you consider the alternatives, we have it pretty darned good here in the USA!

Catch up time again.

We have been getting some nice little rains along.  We did manage to get 20 acres of hay baled (dry) before the almost daily showers started again.  The hay crew is just waiting for another dry spell and it looks like Tuesday - Thursday this week may be it.  Finger crossing time again.

The rains have also kept  me from doing much outside work.  I have set a goal of at least one hour outside daily and haven't even been able to manage that.

The groundhog once again got all the peaches from the tree in the garden area....has  missed the tree outside the kitchen so far.  We are having zero luck trapping him.

I am afraid to even look closely at the garden.....I know I have a few tomato plants that should have been staked.  When the leaves dry I am going to try to enclose them in some cages I have left from a few years ago.

The Japanese beetles have been as bad as I can recall.  I am spraying with Sevin (and then it rains) and that seems to drop them.  I tried using the orchard spray and now I see why the peaches are faulty.   The next morning after spraying they were still eating away merrily.  I am going back to my old method of mixing my own sprays.  I suspect the government has intervened with the large companies and forced them to reduce the strength of current sprays on the market.  They have still done considerable damage. Not much escapes their taste.


I have not been doing much inspired cooking these days....or anything else

My 6-year old very large oven went  kaput about a week ago.  They had to order a part.  Max suggested we could just eat 'store' bread for a while.  After depleting all the frozen rolls and breads out of the freezer we  bought a loaf.  He decided he  could live  with it;  I  could not.

I have been using a very small countertop  oven for biscuits and small things for a long time.  Of  course, it is too  small for  loaves of bread.  Finally I decided  to risk a small batch of dough for dinner rolls.  I made 5 very large buns and 4 caramel rolls.  I had to bake in three  shifts but it worked great.  We can use half a  roll for a slice  of bread  (and the caramel rolls are gone!)  have also ordered a larger oven to replace my small one.  I will use it for  most baking  chores.  I think it is more economical and also keeps the kitchen much cooler than using the large gas oven on my range. There is no telling  when the part will come in and it will get fixed.

The serviceman did tell us that we can take the oven door apart and  clean the glass.  Very early on it  leaked and has several streaks between the glass panels that look horrible.  I am  going to give it a whirl soon.  If  I can  find the screw head that fits the weird holes on the screws.

This is my 16x12x9  current oven that is still working.
 And these are the breads that I baked in it.

I haven't taken any recent pictures outside.  The rains have knocked some things over.  Scratch that comment.  I just went outside with my boots on a took a few.

The first thing I saw was  this:

I found this pink sport on my giant blue Shoal Creek Vitex this morning

I will save other pictures for a later post.

Again, Happy Fourth!


  1. And a happy fourth to you! I make most of my bread in buns like that, we slice them open and find they hold together for a sandwich so much better than sliced homemade bread, and they fit in the toaster well, too. I hope you get your oven fixed soon. But seriously, before I got my canning stove set up in the garage, I did a lot of summer baking in a little electric oven much like yours, out on the patio. Our HVAC man says the use of the oven in an air-conditioned home adds many BTU's of heat into the house and makes the AC have to work a lot harder. Sorta like leaving a door open on a hot day while running the AC.

    We were invited across the road for food and a fireworks display. So we went. We met lots of nice people and had a good time. I even had a margarita. Hubs had banana pudding and strawberry cake for dessert. He was in hog heaven. Joe grilled on the covered patio at the front of his house because we were getting some heavy rain at the time. Managed the fireworks after the rain subsided.

    We've had enough rain, finally, to soak far enough in the ground to actually do the garden some good. I brought in a basket full of cucumbers that I swear weren't there on Saturday. LOL. Made some bread and butter pickles, all my neighbors love them. I hope I'll have enough for everyone by the time the vines are through producing.

    I'm growing tomatoes without cages this summer, as an experiment. I've planted them fairly close together and I pinch them back when they start getting sprawley. I might be getting a little less production but hard to tell since it might be the heat and dry causing it. Cool nights and rain have made the plants bloom again. I thought I'd throw my old curtain sheers over them, maybe it'll help them get to size without boiling in the sun. S'posed to get to 100 here within the next few days. Hurry, September! Hugs xoxoxo

    1. It is hot here too. Tell hubs I made banana pudding and chocolate pudding for Max! He could eat it daily.

      No cucumbers here yet. I may make a few garlic and dill this year.

  2. Sorry your oven went kaput! Your small oven seems to work really well. I have a small toaster/convection oven that I use quite a bit. I use my Oster bread machine for baking bread. :-)

    Hope you get another dry spell to get more hay baled. We could use more rain and it keeps being predicted. I hand-watered some potted plants this morning.

    Love and hugs to you & Max dear Glenda ~ FlowerLady

    1. I hope you get the rain too. It is iffy for us tomorrow so maybe they will get the hay baled first.

  3. Really like the sport on the vitex. Will you leave it or cut it off? No rain here. Forecast for it all the time, but it never makes it here. Thank goodness I'm growing veg in pots - easier to water. It's amazing what a little experiment will pay off. Using the small oven seems to be filling a need for you and I'm glad you don't have to eat store bread. Yuk. Fingers crossed you'll get the next hay in before more rain. (P.S. Send that rain HERE!) Take care

    1. At the rate I prune things, it will probably remain.

      I got a new larger counter top oven today. It will hold a standard size loaf pan of bread! Still no word from repairman about the part.

      They got 15 acres cut. Hopefully will bale tomorrow.

  4. Glenda,

    Happy 4th To You and Yours!!!
    Darn ovens!!!! Your rolls look delicious.....I'm heading your way :-)

  5. I got the new countertop oven today. It is larger and I baked cookies in it. Of course, it takes longer but I wanted to try it out. I will hold a loaf of bread which the smaller one wouldn't do.

  6. Nothing, I say NOTHING will keep a good baker from baking! :o)