Archives for July 2013

Channeling Jeff Foxworthy

Have you ever heard of Jeff Foxworthy? If you haven’t, you won’t get this and it’s time for you to leave now and Google. He came to mind last night when I was sitting at Sam’s Club fooling with my Iphone and decided to “check in” and somehow indicated that I was at the “Walmart Restaurant” …waiting on Mike as he got his weekly Sam’s Club fix. I looked awful and was stranded in the truck with the dogs. It’s not so bad.

But I was really channeling Jeff Foxworthy today when Mike stuck his head in the door and said “do you want to go eat Mexican?” and I grabbed my purse and walked out to go, and here’s what my ride looked like…

My Limo Ride

Are you speechless? As it turned out, El Potrillo in Gate City was closed for vacation. Or maybe they saw us coming and slapped the vacation sign on the door and hid? We’ll never know.


How About Them Tomatoes?

We finished up the garage sale today. I learned a lot. I had advertised the sale in the newspaper which was $40, but that was a waste. By the time people from Bristol got here, the good stuff was gone. By putting pictures on Facebook as well as advertising on Facebook, I was able to connect with enough people around Mendota to sell everything. The added fun was seeing my neighbors…where else would Trish AND Rico be able to shop together?

Riko and Trish

So a bit after Rico and Trish came by, Mike returned to the house to wash the truck. He was bending here and there, and all of a sudden, his pants fell down. Talk about tomatoes that aren’t ripe!!!

But these tomatoes ARE ripe. BIll Jones of Hiltons grows these pretty tomatoes.

Basil Tomatoes Up Close

I added basil from my patio…and them some cheese…are you hungry yet?…

Tomatoes with Mozzo

Sprinkled a little of this on the whole thing…I also added some sea salt.

Balsamic Vinegar


Balsamic Vinegar on Tomatoes

Even if you don’t think it is beautiful, it sure is a lot prettier than those two white tomatoes I saw when Mike was washing his truck. Scary.


Garage Sale Day One

The yard sale finished up today really well. I don’t have too much left to sell tomorrow. One would think I would be grateful, but all I can think of is MY FEET! They are killing me!!!

Except for my feet, it was fun day…here’s my crazy “Forever Friend” Lisa modeling a wool coat in 90 degree temperature. Lisa and I will have fun being old ladies together one day….probably not that far off! She was working on furnishing her classroom. She has alway been extremely artistic, and she now teaches Art in an elementary school.

Lisa Edwards

A couple of other shoppers. They did not see anything they wanted except rabbit ears.


Off to rest my feet!


Cleaning Out!

What are you doing tomorrow? I am going to spend tomorrow and Saturday in Mike’s shop baking and selling stuff for our yardsale. You know what they say…“one man’s junk…another man’s treasure.” Please come carry this treasure off.

It’s not all junk…it was actually fun digging around in boxes. You see, about 12 years ago we combined two houses into one. We got rid of a lot of things, but for lack of time or desire, we kept too much. And then we added to it.

Sometimes during this yard sale journey, I opened a box and was JOLTED back in time. I bought this in Key West, Florida, when I thought I’d have a baby of my own. That baby never happened, but when I look at this scary mogul I was buying for a crib…well, yikes.

Clown Mogul from Key West

I must have had a complete clown fancy because here’s another one. I bought it in Cary.

Clown Marionette

And then there is this lamp. This lamp is nice, but it is not me. What was I thinking?

Pole Lamp

And then there is this doll pictured below. Mother and I were out one day, and she thought this was cute/funny. I bought it, and we laughed all the way home about how funny this doll was. Mother died in 2005, and this poor dear has been staring at a corner in my attic since that time.

Little Girl

The yard sale will be over in two days. It seems like August is a transition month for me so getting rid of this stuff so close to August is a good thing. I’m transitioning again. Like a caterpillar/butterfly/caterpillar thing. Always changing.

Last year, I left AGC in August and began working with a friend. I’ve had such a nice experience, but now I’m going to not work for a while…maybe forever! I’m looking forward to cleaning the attic, going back to work on making my house exactly the way I want it, and maybe even traveling with Mike a bit.

Lots to look forward to. How about you?


No Blog Today

I am up to my neck in the yardsale. No blog until I get this thing underway. No anything until I get this thing underway!

Ugh. Why???


Peaches and Poo

So today I went to Bristol, and I took both dogs. Luckie and Gracie needed to get out of the house as they were going stir crazy, and I had a couple of errands to run so off we went. We have a lock system on our Taco Mama (Tocoma…we think that’s funny) that allows us to leave the engine running with the AC blowing while we step in and out doing errands. I would never leave them longer than five minutes this way as it would be a disaster if the air conditioning failed. I’m going somewhere with this so just stay with me….

I got up between 5 am and 6 am this morning to feed the bees. They are all in the hive at the very early hour of the morning, and I don’t have to wear the protective clothing during this time. I go in PJs…barefoot. It’s so nice to have the hives near the house. This morning, Luckie accompanied me and I thought she pooped.

Later, I showered, let both Luckie and Gracie pee and then we all climbed in the truck and took off. I was at one of my stops paying the cashier, and I noticed the woman beside me had a “stinkin” problem. It was strange because she looked clean. “Poor dear” I thought and moved away. She had such a pained look on her face. When I got back in the truck, there was a piece of smashed poop in my seat. Apparently, Luckie had accidentally pooped a little bit, I had sat on it and I’d got it on my white shorts (unknown to be me). Luckie is “regular” and poops every morning, but on this morning, she did not poop between 5 and 6 am. Nosiree. Coincidentally, it smelled exactly like the woman that I had thought stunk. Do you know who had the stinkin’ problem? Shame. I just wanted to run back and explain, but I was too busy cleaning the seat.

Meanwhile, in the unlikely event you would ever want to eat at my house after hearing that, I’m working in peaches. We have not had good peaches in years. In fact, we had decided not to replace the peach trees. We’ve not sprayed them in years and the limbs break easily under rotting, bad peaches. However, this year, they aren’t rotten…

Peach Basket

Isn’t she a beauty? Poor Valley ain’t so poor this year!!



The President is Coming!

I was in the shop earlier today working on my yard sale stuff, and I got so hot that I came up to the house and fell sound asleep. I have got nothing done.

When I was a child, my mother used to motivate me to do my chores by telling me to pretend the President was visiting. I’d get busy right away. It’s not working today. I am totally unprepared for President Obama or even the Vice President whose name slips my mind at the moment (Shame), I’ll focus on something else. Delay that visit a bit by taking pictures.

Like this little wall vignette I threw up a few months ago and am now a little tired of. Or not.

Vignette 1

Or the cane that our sweet young friend Neth made Mike following his knee replacement surgery. How many 17 year olds would take the time to do something like this completely on their own? I placed it on the mantle to remind me of the goodness that exists in the world.


And…because I’m fooling around with my camera trying to learn how to take better pictures, I was able to get one shot of our small bathroom wall. The walls are painted a color called “herbal wash” and the reds just make me happy. I like warm colors.


Now….if Airforce One landed at Tri-Cities right now, how much cleaning can I get done before they arrive?


Skunks After My Bees

  Irksome. That is how I felt today when Gerald and I looked at the bee enclosure. Here’s what we saw…skunk poop! Skunks scratch around in front of the hives and when the bees come out, they eat them. They can destroy a hive.

Skunk Poop

I am so mad…our mean little pets are being picked on, and we’re not going to take it!!

My Bees

The bees are enclosed because of skunks, but apparently, they are climbing the fence or they are squeezing through the fence. They aren’t digging under. We’ll have to put some electricity on this fence. Mike and Gerald will take care of that.

I have been thinking of schemes all evening to get rid of the skunks. I’m going to put contact paper all around the enclosure tomorrow evening. If a skunk walks on it, it’ll get it on its feet which should make for an interesting evening. We might also have to shoot them.

Other critters…I walked to the truck today and ran into this guy lady. We call them mud turtles but they are actually map turtles. (I know ’cause I read it on the internet so it must be true.) The girls are laying eggs everywhere, and I believe this young lady targeted my garage as her labor and delivery room.

Map Turtle in Garage

A few years ago, we had a whole bunch of babies hatch out in our impatiens. I wonder if they return to where they hatched out? Anyway…I opened all the doors to the garage and left her alone as I think she just got off track. She was gone when I went back out. I actually did look these turtles up on the internet and a great deal of their day is spent “basking”.   I’ve seen them sunbathing on logs in the river but I didn’t know that it’s just really important in the turtle world.  Our river must the the turtle riviera — they love it!!   When I was a little girl, I was told to stay away from the mud turtles because “if they bite you, they will not open their mouths to free you until lightening strikes.” I was terrified.  I envisioned myself having to carry a turtle around hanging off my foot while waiting for a storm.    Who told this scary story to a child?  Mom!!  I guess she just wanted me to stay out of the creek.

Did I show you what happens to four cucumber seeds after being planted in our raised beds? Four tiny seeds.

Four Cucumber Seeds

We’ve been getting about this many each day…


However, these little creatures are on the vines and we’re starting to get “wilt”. If I’d planted only two cucumber seeds, I could place the protective cover on the raised beds and keep the squash beetles out. However, the four seeds exploded and there is too much vine to cover.  I’m not going to use pesticides.  I’ll just replant so I’ll get more cucumbers.

Squash Beetle

It’s a darn war out here…we’re fighting the skunks and squash beetles while tripping over turtles…all the while trying to save the bees that want to sting us!!   When I see a squash beetle, I show it no mercy.  I pinch it to death and leave it on the vine.  I think the dead squash beetle might just send a message to other squash beetles that this is not a safe place.   You never know.  

Here’s the pumpkin vine that volunteered in the potatoes in the raised beds. Potatoes are gone but the pumpkin vine is going crazy.  Mind you.  This is from one pumpkin seed.  Warning…never plant a bunch of these.  They are like kudzu.

Pumpkin Out of Control

Our yard has a couple of these kind of things going on, so we’ll not be in Southern Living any time soon, but it’s so worth it to mow around this monster as it’s got some “Cindy Rella” pumpkins growing underneath it. Here’s one of them.

Pumpkin Growing

Hope you are having a great evening. I’m going to run out and check on the bee enclosure one last time. I might also pee beside it. I think that might be a deterrent for the skunks. This is not based on any scientific knowledge, but I just think it might work. Maybe I’m onto something!


Boot Flowers

Ahh…the house is quiet following Aaron (my husband’s son) and the granddaughters visit. I hope they had a good time. I wrongly accused all three of them of leaving with my iPad. They were 25 minutes up the road, and I texted all three of them in a panic…trembling hands…sweaty brow. I mean…how does one exist without one’s ipad?

While Mike and I turned the house upside down and the cars wrong side out looking for the prized ipad, Aaron and the girls pulled over and searched desperately. Not once but twice. (These girls understand how important our electronic devices are to us…we must have them!!) However, no luck. I just knew it was gone for good. Most of the day passed with me texting and asking “did you find it?” And then…I found it. It was in the strangest place…a place I never expected to find it…. in a drawer by the bed. It’s where it’s supposed to stay. Either I put it back in its rightful place or they did. Shame on me. Moving on…hoping they forget about this.

At any rate, it’s time to rest a bit. Kick the shoes off…

Shoe Flower 2

And sit down and rest in a seat of flowers…(conveniently purchased off the half-dead plant rack at Lowe’s — my True Love.)

Chair Flowers

This chair actually was headed to the trash dump many years ago but it arrived here instead.

Chair and Shoes

“Hen and Chicks” are great ornamentals to grow in old shoes and chairs (or anywhere else)! Since they are succulents and need little soil, water, or attention, they’ll take right off in most anything. I move these boots which belonged to my cousin and former pastor, Randy Powers, to the barn in the winter. With a little compost added to the inside, water and sunshine, they return when moved back out in the spring.

Don’t you just love nature’s resilience?

Speaking of nature…look what came out of my sister’s garden that she shared with me? If you are from the south, you know how we prize fresh green beans. I’ve washed these and they are now on the stove top. We’re having green beans, rosemary potatoes, and cucumbers and onions with Grainger County tomatoes. Droolworthy.

Fresh Green Beans

Oh yea baby.

Thank you for reading RiverCliff Cottage.


Mod Podge Fun With Names

Our granddaughters were in this past week, and I enjoyed doing some crafts with them. We got out the Mod Podge. We had a ball!

Blocks Spelling Ball

There’s always dogs present here at RiverCliff Cottage, but were there beagles?

Mod Podge Blocks

Nope! Something much sweeter was here than a beagle…




Hope you are having a wonderful day!


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