Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Another project!

OH NO, not another project! My Husband and I have had many projects since we returned from Germany to our house we had rented out for several years. About 8 years ago, Papa Porcupine purchased the maple hardwood from a old school gym floor. It was much work with planing the wood and preparing it,laying it and finishing it, but finally about 5 years ago he put a very nice maple floor in our family room (which originally started out as our attached garage). Another big project was our first attempt to tile. This was in our kitchen about 2 years ago. It was a learning experience and we are still very much enjoying the tile.

We also refinished a section of nice hard wood in our kitchen and also the hall way. This hard wood had been covered and hid for many years.
It turned out real nice but again was very much work with a rented floor sander.

Our big project last summer was building a two car garage. We attached it to a workshop that was already there. It also was a lot of work. We did have some help a couple days to help with the really big high hard stuff. Last summer was also very hot so most of our work was done in early morning and late afternoon or evening. I took a lot of fun pictures as the garage went up and through the finishing touches.

You can see how important our fishing boat is,
we built the garage right around the boat. It also doubled as a ladder or step stool.
Below , 2007 project!

On Wednesday last week, we went to Sears so I could order new glasses, we had been talking about a new washer and dryer for quite some time to replace our 30+ year old washer and dryer. Well, little did we know, that was the day. We found what we wanted at a great sale price. This meant no more procrastination with our utility room. You see, we had purchased extra floor tile 2 years ago when we did our kitchen but had been putting it off. We also had to take out shelves, paint and move some electrical wiring and outlets. Thankfully, Papa Porcupine knows how to do all that stuff and Thursday we got going with it. You can see the old vinyl tile squares and under linoleum being chipped of the floor. Friday I soaked the floor to get all that black stuff (mainly old smelly glue) of the floor. Sunday late afternoon (church in the morning) we did some painting.

Monday was a hard long day for me as I am the one who lays the tile. My husband had the heavy work though, carrying in those boxes of 15 ceramic tile. I could never have done that. It would have taken me at least 3 trips per box. He also got the wet saw out and set up for me outside. Then he had to go to our local hardware store for more spacers, more tile and then more adhesive. It's hard to get things estimated just right and we were working with what we had left from the kitchen 2 years ago.

After the floor was all clean and level, I lay out the tiles to make sure they are spaced right and find out where I need to cut tiles to fit corners and edges. The blue spacers are a must and really help to keep the tiles straight and even.

Almost done laying them out. only a few more close to our family room door to cut and place.
If you look in our family room, you can see just a part of that maple hard wood gym floor.

Now you know why we did the cutting outside, Yes, even though it was 100 degrees, IT IS ONE MESSY JOB. You can see the water spraying up to keep the blade wet and cool as it slowly cuts through the ceramic tile. I was a mess but I must admit the water spraying up on me did keep me cool also.

Here you can see how the tile is the same as our kitchen tile. It was purchased at the same time. Except we ran out of tile and had to call the store, make sure they still had the same exact tile and get 1 more box of 15. The utility room took 44 tiles. That's a lot of bending and lifting. I would stack up 2 rows at a time, spread the adhesive and then put down the tile and space it using many of the blue spacers.

I finished at 9 pm. I had worked 13 hours on this floor but once I was started, dirty and had the mess, I thought it would be best to just keep going until I was finished gluing them down. Now they have to set from 24 to 48 hours before I can grout. That's another big messy job. I can tell why tile is such a expensive popular floor. It takes so much work and time. We will have a couple more weeks before our new washer and dryer come. They are front loading and will be stacked. I hope if you ever try the tiling thing, that you have as much fun as I did. I'm sure we will enjoy the tile for years to come.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Another Parade!

The Day's of "76" Parade in Deadwood, SD. I remember going to that parade 25 years ago when our children were just little girls. If you like horses, this is the parade for you. It is always the last week in July or first weekend in Aug. Often it falls on My birthday.

This was a great entry, I just couldn't get my camera out and ready on time. I guess I wasn't too sure if I would take a picture of this. We actually were a little close to get the whole outfit with all 6 gorgeous big Clydesdale's.

They try to keep things in the order of History. So of course the American Indian's were far to the front of the parade. I love these paint horses. Just in case you were wondering, I counted the horses and as close as I could tell there were 235 horses and about 27 Mules. The most I have ever counted at the Days of "76" parade were 300 horses and 72 Mules. That was about 5 years ago.
I loved the markings on this team.

Hear is a beautiful white team pulling the old stage coach.

Another big team pulling the Deadwood Stage.

I just thought this was neet with the wrapped legs and the two white pack mules with the big Elk or Moose horns.

It was also interesting how they had the mule's tails trimmed. Rather cute for mules!

There were so many people dressed in Pioneer cloths, also there was Wild Bill, Calamity Jane, Preacher Smith, Potato Creek Johnie Who found that big huge Gold Nugget. I won't elaborate what He was carrying in his gold pan, but usually they call them road apples.

They always have this old Jail wagon. There were dance hall girls, an old hearse wagon, many many riding groups on very tall long legged horses. There were only a few cute colts this year. This Parade lasted about 1 hour and the weather was perfect. about 80 degrees.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Green Fried Tomatoes UM-UM

Hear we are, back in our garden, Yes, these are some of my biggest very green tomatoes. This is one thing that my family and others frown n, me picking their green tomatoes. and have you ever tried to buy green tomatoes in a grocery store or farmers market? NO! you can only buy ripe red tomatoes. I always give my parents and brother a rough time and tease them about sneaking out to their garden and picking their green tomatoes. They guard them with their lives, well almost. One year about 3 years ago when we were visiting at ND, it just happened to be my birthday. That morning my brother handed me a pretty flowered gift bag with tissue paper and said Happy Birthday. Well, He sure must love me because that bag was filled with big green tomatoes! It bought tears to my eyes, no, not because I love Green Fried Tomatoes so much but to think of what a loving sacrifice that was for him to pick them for his sister. Now every time I eat these Delicious Green Fried Tomatoes, I think of him!
Hear is fresh green tomatoes all sliced up for frying!

Now they are rolled in flower and lightly salted.
I fry them in about 1/2 inch of vegetable oil until golden brown.
I use half vegetable oil and olive oil. You can tell I always use my cast Iron fry pans.

Now they are golden brown and on the serving plate.
The hardest thing is keeping my husband from snitching them before we sit down to our meal.

Just in case you were wondering what other foods we had for supper, I took this picture. Sweet corn, but store bought, ours is just tasseled out in our garden, also sirloin tip steak with sauteed mushrooms on top and of course for this hot 109 degree day, a Michelob Golden light draft beer.


GARDENING! What a big but fun project. This is my 88 yr old, (almost 99 year) Dad in their ND garden. Now for those of you who are not familiar with ND, Let me tell you, nothing grows as big or as fast as in ND. at least the Red River Vally part of ND where my parents and brother live. I am always amazed at the beautiful producing gardens my parents have grown but even more so now with the age they are. My Mother just canned 10 pints of green beans. She is 86 years old, well, on Sept. 1st she will be 86. Not only the vegetables grow vibrant and fast but if you know weeds, they always grow twice or even three times as fast as the vegetables. That is why I am so amazed at how clean this garden is. My Dad takes the 4 wheeler to the garden and even did some hoeing, weeding and watering from the 4 wheeler.
If you look real close, you can spot the 4 wheeler behind the tall Lucius sweet corn. This is my Dad picking Green Beans. His legs are very bad and thus cause him a lot of pain. He has to work awhile and then sit for awhile. He just keeps on working tho. He mows all the lawn, gets the mail from the mail box at the end of their farm road, He even helps my brother and nephew swath grain and combines for a couple hours at a time which gives them a very much needed break. Their garden has lettuce, radish, onions, sweet corn, carrots, green beans, cucumbers,tomatoes, and squash. I may have forgotten a thing or two. This is the biggest garden they have had in the last couple years.
This is my garden, Not near as nice as my parents but it is doing great for SD and this 100+ degrees heat we have had for several days now. If you look at the bottom of this picture just where the hose doesn't show, you can see one of our nice slicer cucumbers. I owe a lot of this lush garden to my sweet cousin who also lives in our city, who came regularly to water when we were out of town for over 2 weeks this summer. I will have to give her some of the fresh vegetables and have over for a couple meals, Right?
This is my nice cabbage. we had a couple more but unfortunately they split open when they were a little bigger then softball size. We ate them anyway and they were tasty.

This is our biggest Tomato, They are looking quite nice this year also. You can see the bug damage on the leaves, We sure have had swarms of those tiny black beetle bugs that are no bigger then a * sign. They sure can do a lot of damage in a short period of time. I do powder but it is hard to control them especially with the hot weather. They love it hot and dry!
I hope you have all been having fun with your gardens as well. I don't can like my mother. If I have extra vegetables, I either give them away or freeze them.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Lunch on a Hot day

You can tell by the picture of our outdoor thermometer that we have been having some warm, might I say HOT, weather! Saturday was about 105 degrees, Yesterday, Sunday was 109 degrees, but at the Reservation where we were having our mission church service and Sunday school it was up to 115 degree's. Today as you can see it is about 105 degrees.
My youngest daughter and son-in-law with their 9 mo old foster son were coming to town. They live 14 miles away. Our grandson is at our church camp so was not with them this time.
We had them over for lunch since it had been several weeks since we had seen them and had them over for a visit.

Since it was already 95 degrees at 10 AM and up to 100 degrees at 11 AM, I decided to do something cool and easy. We had a nice lettuce salad and I made a bunch of marinated chicken wings out on the grill. (No need to heat up our house, right?) We had a big pitcher of ice cold pink lemon aid, and for desert, I quick made some instant chocolate pudding with dab of cool whip and a cherry on top. This picture was taken in my fridge, I didn't want to set it all out and give it a chance to warm up. We enjoyed our lunch and visit very much. Our air conditioner works well and keeps us and our house cool. It has been hard keeping enough moisture on our garden and lawn. Things dry up so fast with the high temp's. Also forest fires are a issue, Saturday there was a huge fire just West of our city. Over 100 homes had to be evacuated. It sounds like that fire is under control now and no homes burnt and no injuries.

The Souvenir

The Petersburg 125th Anniversary had a flea market and they were selling these wonderful crocks that were personalized for either Niagara(who had their 125th Anniversary celebration July 7th) or Petersburg. That is when the railroad went across ND. Next year will be Michigan's 125th. that is the next town to the west.
Anyway I did purchase one of these crocks as a souvenir. It is well made and can hold my kitchen utensils. I believe I will treasure it for many years.

The 125th Anniversary Parade

The weekend was full of activities. there were dances both Friday and Saturday evening. a museum, a flea market, food concessions, (they even had my favorite, Indian Taco's) We had time to mingle, talk with friends and classmates whom we had not seen for years. Some since we graduated. I must admit that was a few years ago. 40 years for our class. It was hard to recognize each other with so many people there but once we did and started reminiscing, it was almost like the years had never past. It sure was fun seeing so many classmates.
Saturday morning about 10:30 was the big and I do mean big parade. For Petersburg being a small town of about 200 to 300 people, they sure did throw one big anniversary celebration.

This is my dear Dad who I love very mush and am very proud of. I took this picture just before the parade started. He is a Army World War II veteran and was ask to ride in a Army Jeep. My Husband and I talked him into wearing his old Army wool Jacket. It was a good thing the morning temp was around 70 degrees. He was good and ready to take of the jacket after the parade, by then it had warmed up to about 85 degrees. It is very small on him but at least he could get it on and I think it really added to the parade. He used to be a jeep driver during the war and even drove General Patton around.

This Jeep is not near as old as the one he actually drove in 1945 . This Army caravan of about 10 vehicles was driven and restored by a Club who live near the area and some are still active military.
There were hundreds of people at the parade.

This is an old Studebaker Army vehicle.

There were several floats in the parade made or put together by different class's. This is my brothers class of "66". He is the one at the far left in the light green short sleeve shirt with a white cap on. They had over 16 of their class members there. They also have had several reunions and parties through the 41 years. Our class of "67" however was much smaller and we did not have a float or wagon to ride on. I also think our class is scattered further apart through out the US.

As you can tell this is the class of "70" I knew them well since several of my cousins were in this class and I hung around with them a lot. I also liked their theme,

There were horses, well, at least 1 horse!

This is my nephew again. He is also a Volunteer fireman for Niagara. He takes this very serious and has been a big help to the team. He has been to several training camps and sessions and not only has he been trained for fire fighting, but first aid and medical response.

There were tractors, this one was restored and painted by one of our friends. It was driven by his brother and these are all his nieces and nephews in the "POOP FLY" like my ND Cowboy nephew used to call it when he was just a little guy.

There were many old cars, and other entries in the parade. It must have taken a hour. Below you can see there were even clowns. There was so much candy thrown that the children got tired of picking it up. Even the next day, Sunday, the St Andrew Lutheran Church had a big bowl of PARADE CANDY on the fellowship refreshment table. Sunday morning Petersburg had a All Faiths reunion Church service and Sunday afternoon a tractor/truck pull.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Donkey softball

After the Friday evening Steak supper in the park, the 125th anniversary celebration continued with DONKEY SOFTBALL! If you have never had the opportunity to take part or to watch this fun sport, you are missing out! The picture's don't do this justice. I can't count the times the riders fell off the donkey's, either over their head because they stopped short, or of the back or side because of the weird stubborn moves. There were a couple of donkeys that were especially hard to ride. The rider's spent more time on the ground or trying to pull them, whisper in their ear or even trying to bribe them with a hand full of green grass.
Some of the ruels were having to be on the donkey both to tag someone out or to throw the ball. Also they had to get on the donkey just after making their hit and ride all around the bases. You can see they made the ball diamond smaller just for the donkey ball game. The score was always close but ended 6 to 7.

They are rather cute, don't you think? How can these precious, adorable, sweet, innocent donkeys cause so much chaos?