Our Schedule

Sunday, June 12, 2022

Out in Bloom

 Cullman,  AL

Our 143rd Boondockers Welcome guests left yesterday.    Great folks.   It was a four day stay that ended too soon.    Some things are meant to be.    They are from Carlisle, PA.   The first day here, I told them we knew people from Carlisle.   Our former pastor and his wife from Plainville UMC in NJ were from there.   When I told them the last name, Carew, they could not believe it.   Pastor Carew married them 40 some years ago.   The pastor and his wife were good friends of the parents of the wife of his couple.   Amazing.   

Pastor Carew passed while serving our church in NJ.  His widow remained as our organist.  She was the organist when Len and I married.   I got our wedding album out to show them the pictures we have of her.   What a treat.

Our 144th guests will arrive later today but are only reserved one night.   Then on Tuesday our granddaughter Tiffany and family arrive in their RV and will be here until next Sunday.  Next Saturday granddaughters Charlotte and Abby arrive via train for their annual visit.   Good times ahead.

Keeping us busy is the yard.  

Magnolia trees in bloom

All kinds of blooms

Raspberry and Blackberry bushes starting to produce.

Still working to clear MORE brush to give to MORE grass to mow

It had been very dry here and the pond was down several feet.    

It rained, rained, winds blew and rained some more earlier this week.   It made for a full pond and good fishing for our recently stocked fish.

Biscuit is doing well.    Even if a bit bored.

He did give Len a lovely Fathers Day gift.

I don't know where he ever that the idea that Len ever picked up ANYTHING after him.  Never happened.

Until next time.   Here we are:

Saturday, May 28, 2022

All around the Yard

 Cullman,  AL.

Not a heck of a lot going on here on our little homestead.

The raspberry and blackberry bushes we planted last fall are doing well.   After a lovely flowering display we now having berries forming.  

The ducks are fat and happy

After a few years of no garden, Len had a small patch plowed and we planted watermelon and cantaloupe.     Coming along nicely.

After a disastrous summer last year when we tried to grow veggies in our raised bed, we bought a composting bin.    We took much of the previous soil out of the bed, added the compost plus bags of new soil and manure.    Then we planted cucumber, pepper and tomato plants.   Also sprouting are lots of other stuff.   Cantaloupes?   Cucumbers?  Squash?   Thinking it is from the compost.   Waiting to see what we get.

They are not the only sprouts we are waiting for.    We are looking forward to Sprout Fiber Optics high speed Internet scheduled to go live in our area in June.     Can't wait.    We see them working on the lines and signs in front of houses in surrounding areas indicating they have Sprout.   Hope it will soon it be our turn.   YIPPEE!

We also restocked our pond last week.   This was necessary due to the fish kill from Algae last August.  We got 50 Blue Gill and 100 Catfish.   Little tiny things at this time.

We had to first place the bags of fish in the pond for 15 minutes to acclimate them to the temperature of the water.

Then they were released.

We are not sure how many are left as this fellow is a constant visitor.

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Its been a busy few weeks.

 Cullman,  AL

Yes, we've been busy and have had some fun too.   

I love seeing the blooming plants.   This is one of my peonies.   I enjoyed it for only a day or two.  Then it rained and winds blew.   Following that, the petals were on the ground.   It did make for a pretty pink fluffy display.

Our raspberry and blackberry bushes we planted last fall are growing and spreading.  We will probably have blackberries this year.  Can't say the same for the blueberries.

A major problem here are the Carpenter bees.   It takes a sincere effort to get rid of them.   Those little critters can really move.   It was difficult to get a good shot.

But easy to capture the sawdust they leave.

And the damage they do,

We are still busy with Boondockers.   Number 130 just left, 131 will be leaving shortly.  I love this setup.   Even their pups enjoyed their short stay.

One of our recent guests took a lot of aerial pictures of our property.  I like this one especially.  

We had a special treat when our dear friends Darlene and Jim on their trip from Florida and Pennsylvania.   They pulled out yesterday morning.

They plan to return in October as they will be completely retired by then.  While here Jim helped Leonard set up a firepit for the RV area.

And he made good use of the little chain saw that daughter Terri and SIL Steve gave us.

Darlene did a lot of cooking while Jim helped Leonard around the property such of picking up branches, repairing the ramp to the lawnmower shed and repairs to a wooden bench.

We managed to have fun too.   We finally got them over to the Rattlesnake Saloon in Tuscumbia about 65 miles from us.  The Rattlesnake Saloon is built under cave.   Customers park and then are transported down a steep hill by a pickup truck that has benches built into the bed of the truck.  That, in itself, is an adventure.   Jim and Darlene preparing  for the ride down.

The Saloon.

We love this place.

Mothers Day Sunday we were treated to lunch at Sons Lennies and DIL Lois' house. Lennie makes the BEST burgers as Jim would tell you.

Three Moms.  Me, Lois and Darlene.

Dinner time.

After Darlene and Jim left yesterday I mowed the front yard and the RV areas prior to our current guests arrival.   Len decided to bush hog the area behind the RV sites and stain the picnic table we bought a few weeks ago.

Now we are quite proud of the RV area.   We provide electric, water, sewer, trash can, firepit with seating and firewood and a picnic table for our guests.    What more could one want?

Until next time.

Saturday, April 30, 2022

Finally! Spring!

 Cullman, AL

Yes, it is. Finally Spring,

This  means the mower, weed eater, hedger, tractor get a workout.   And now I have a new toy.

Daughter Terri and SIL Steven gave this handy mini chain saw to us.    WOW!  Easy now to trim those low small branches that get in my way when mowing and allowing me to get the mower in closer to the various bushes and shrubs.

Now the weeds are growing tall around the pond.   There are some that are difficult for me to get to with the weed eater.  Leonard to the rescue with his bushhog.    Makes me a wee bit nervous.  But it gets the job done.

Biscuit was taking a walk around the pond chasing frogs.   Baby Duck and Penelope following behind.  Speaking of behind, right after I took this picture Baby Duck took a peck to Biscuits behind.  He is one nasty duck.

We are quite busy hosting Boondockers Welcome members.   Our 124th RIG left yesterday.  125 comes today.  At this time we have 14 reservations on the book.    A guest mentioned to us that we would be ideal for hosting traveling Nurses and other healthcare professionals.   We could charge from $800. to $1,100. a month.   We looked into it as we were concerned with the liability and tax issues.  Of course we would have to claim the income on taxes.  We talked with our insurance agent from Allstate here in Cullman.   He said he would have to talk to higher ups.   We got a call from Allstate that this would be considered a business and they would not cover it.   Don't want to get into all that stuff so we will maintain what we are doing now.   

Only a few more weeks and that porch will be converted to a enclosed porch.  We are so much looking forward to it.

The blackberry plants we planted last fall are in full bloom.   Yum, blackberries this year.  We've planted tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers in our raised bed.   We think we solved the soil issue we had last year.  We also had a small garden tilled and planted watermelon, cantaloupe and honeydews.   Hoping they grow and the deer don't see it.

Happy Spring!   Until next time.


Monday, April 18, 2022

Is it warm out yet????

Cullman,  AL

We are still hosting Boondockers and waiting for warmer weather.    118 rigs so far.

One of our recent Boondockers is a traveling rehab therapist.   He asked us if we had considered hosting traveling nurses, etc.   Many of them travel in RVs and have 13 week assignments at hospitals throughout the country.    This sounds interesting.    Since we are midway between Huntsville medical facilities and University of Alabama Hospital in Birmingham we are in an ideal location.

As much as we enjoy the Boondockers, it does tie us to the house on their days of arrival.    Some come early in the day, most late afternoon and some well after dark where we have to go out with flashlights to direct them to a site.   Under Boondockers welcome we are limited to charging 5, 10 or 15 dollars.   We charge 10 a night.  If the guest does not use electric or water, their stay must be free.  They are truly Boondocking.   Obviously we are not in it for the money.   

Hosting traveling medical personal would be quite different.  I will be checking into it.  We would still keep one of our two sites available for friends and Boondockers.  

Once a week we go to the local Senior Center.   Usually on Thursday.   On Thursday it is either a band or Karaoke.    We are even able to dance a few times.   They have special days.  Two weeks ago it was wear purple.   Well, a few years back the granddaughters made Len a purple shirt   This was the day to wear it.  

We saw the ladies in the kitchen pointing at him.  Finally it got the better of them and one came out and asked him about it.   We like the people that volunteer in the kitchen.   They get the $1.25 meal ready.  Last week it was orange juice, coffee, ham, applesauce, scalloped potatoes, roll, peas and carrots and German chocolate cake.  What a deal.

Speaking of cake, dear daughter Terri sent us an Easter gift.   OMG..... these were fabulous.

They are sort of Biscotti but with more of a cookie texture.   There are 4 left.  I suspect that by tomorrow there will be another decrease.  Or none.  Probably none.

Our great-grandson Jordan turns 11 today.   On Saturday son Lennie and DIL Lois hosted his birthday party.   Quite a crowd of their friends and their families. Lots of kids.  LOTS. It had rained all night before, the weather was chilly but the kids still enjoyed this:

Here is Jordan

This is granddaughter Maddie and Leonard.  With her work schedule we don't see her often enough.

Often when Jordan, Lois and Lennie are here Jordan wants to play Mexican Train.  So for a gift we gave him his own set.

Yesterday, being Easter we were up at 5:00 am to get to the Sunrise Service our church has every year.   Many attended.

The service started at 6:00, sunrise was 6:15.  I left my camera in the car and was disappointed I did not catch a picture then.   This takes place in a cemetery on a hill overlooking pastures of cows and the view of more hills.  Beautiful view,

When back to the car I took this picture and the one above.

Following service was breakfast at the church.

Lois, Lennie and Jordan came for dinner.  But, per Jordans request, we first had to play a few rounds of Mexican Train.    Last time we played, I won.   So it was only right that I came in last this time.

My Cullman Family:     Lennie, Lois, Jordan and Leonard.   I am blessed.

Until next time.

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Come on Spring

Cullman,  AL

We have lived in Alabama for over five years now.   What a cold winter we have had.  Leonard is ALWAYS cold.   He surely loves both our Walk in Tub and Gas fireplace we had installed.   He makes lots of use of both to warm up. 

We've had the occasional snow.  Doesn't stay long.  Biscuit is not too sure he likes it at all.

He does know he likes our bed.

We are liking the longer days.   This greeted us last week when we left Bible Study at a little after Six in the evening.

We love sitting on the front porch.   My favorite spot in the world.   We have been debating of changing it to a 3-season room.   I was asked why we don't have 4 seasons here in north Alabama.   Well... we have just Three.    1.) Chilly and rainy season.   2) Hot season.  3) Tornado season.

After much debate and consideration we decided to spend more of our children's inheritance and go ahead with enclosing the porch to a "3 season room" .   The contractor said it will take about 5 weeks to order and receive the materials.   Of course it will have a Doggie Door.  Biscuit loves sitting in HIS chair on the porch.   This is how the porch looks now.   That's his red chair.

We hope to use the porch even more once it is done.

It is getting time to think about planting to veggies in our raised bed that Leonard made last year.  Some might remember we had no luck at all with it.  Nothing lived, nothing grew.   We suspect it was the soil we used.  Over the winter we changed out the soil and composted all veggie scraps.  We will mix in the compost this week and let's see how well we do.    The last few months I have been getting an order from Worthy Flavors of veggies.  We have been well pleased.  This is this weeks delivery.

Last Friday I decided I needed to mow the grass.  I drove the mower out of the shed, took it to where we kept two full gas cans and filled the gas tank.  I then drove it about 100 feet and it died.  No starting it again.   So to John Deere we took it.   The gas tank was full of water.  No gas.  It appears when we were away for a long weekend someone noticed the gas cans sitting in our carport and decided they needed gas.   We would have preferred they just took the gas and not feel the need to fill the cans with water.   Got the mower back yesterday.  Wrote a check for $240.00 and came home and mowed.  

We are now hosting our 107th and 108th Boondockers Welcome guests.   Always a treat to meet different folks and see different lifestyles.    Two weeks ago we had three young people in a 28 foot travel trailer.   With them was 6 dogs, 5 rabbits, 4 cats, a tortoise, a ferret and a chicken.  Can you imagine?   One of the cats got out.  They searched for it but could not find it.   We saw it a couple of days ago.   I've been putting out food and it disappears.  That doesn't mean the cat took it.  Beagles have a great nose.   The people are returning next week on the their trip back to Maine to see it they can retrieve it.

Well, that brings us up to date.  Until next time.   Where's SPRING?????