Design, Fountain of Youth, Galleria, Happiness Project, Photography, Therapy Thursday, Throwback Thursday

Bradbury and Bradbury Ceiling Paper

“Family love is messy, clinging, and of an annoying and repetitive pattern, like bad wallpaper.”  P. J. O’Rourke.

The other day, my daughter and I had a wonderful day together. She’s a senior in high school. It was a special day at school when the parents go to Liturgy, then the seniors are dismissed to spend the rest of the day with their parents. My husband couldn’t attend, since we are harvesting our grapes. She and I went to Barnes and Nobel, we are avid readers, and then went to eat. When we were eating she asked me “Do you miss our house in Oakland?” I answered…I miss the memories that we created. She told me that she missed the way the sun came into the front room, and the time we would spend in that room just reading together. We then remembered the Bradbury and Bradbury ceiling paper story that always makes us laugh. I believe it would make anyone laugh.

It took us years to get our house to be the gem that it was before we sold it. We had reconstruction done to our house, and that was so labor intensive for all of us. Then after the contractors went away, it was time for us to do all the finish work, and one of those projects was the ceiling paper for our living room. This would be the room where the family would gather for conversations and reading.

We ordered our Bradbury and Bradbury paper, and it doesn’t come precut, or at least at the time, it didn’t. You have to do all the trimming for the paper yourself or hire a professional. It is also paper that is hung using a clay. The paper sat in the large tubes until it was time for Roberto to take his winter vacation. The anticipation of the paper going on the ceiling was intense.

Roberto broke out several saw horses, and made himself a cutting space. After all that was done, he was ready for me to help him. He had two ladders, one for me at the back of the room, and his ladder was near the clay. The paper was folded according style as we gently put up section by section. I was in charge of holding it while he made sure all the bubbles were out of the paper. Success! We had the first section up, only 12 more to go. The first section took so long, and the kids were young, so they had questions to ask…which made the whole process seem longer.

We were on section 2, and I was holding the accordion piece with one hand and holding the paper with the other. Sabrina came into the living room, and told me something that was funny, but Roberto told me “Stop moving, you’re going to rip the expensive paper.” I told Sabrina, I would be in the family room once we finished this section. My arms were shaking from keeping them up in the air for so long. All the sudden, almost the whole part that we just put up on the ceiling peeled away, and drooped to the floor. Roberto was pissed. He walked over to the five gallon buck and picked it up, then slammed in on the floor in frustration. At the same time his glasses slipped off his face, and fell into the bucket of mud. I just busted out laughing so hard. I couldn’t stop laughing. He grabbed his glasses and took off to the kitchen where I could hear him laughing too. Then the kids came into the kitchen saw his glasses and laughter filled the house.

I got down from the ladder, and he told me; “We need to figure out a better way of getting the paper on the ceiling.” We all took a break together, and then he told me to stay out of the living room. He had an idea…I was replaced by a ladder and a cardboard box! LOL!!

country, Fountain of Youth, Happiness Project, San Luis Obispo Sites, Saturday Special

This Really Happened

“I’m not really scared of a lot of things. I’m scared of possums. And I’m scared of raccoons sometimes, it depends on how big it is – I’m scared of the smaller raccoons because the bigger ones are slower.” Vince Staples

Last week, I needed to find something to do before I picked up my daughter from her trip with the school. So, I thought, I will just go to the Mission, and say a prayer for all my family, friends, and those that have touched my life.

I pulled out my phone, and I see a possum. I take a photo, and then..

He or she, saw me, and continued to come down the stairs to me. It was daylight, and all I could think about was “rabies”. A nocturnal animal that is out durning the day, and trying to interact with a human? I made a weird sound, then both of us took off in opposite directions

After I said my prayers, I saw it again as I was leaving. This time, it headed under the bushes. Spooked me out a little bit.

Collections and Obsessions, country, farming, Fountain of Youth, Galleria, Happiness Project, Terreni D' Oro Tuesday

Shoes for a Day

I get that people think that owning a winery and having a farm is so romantic. It is also a lot of work, every single day…no holidays. The animals have to have food and water everyday, so no getting sick and just staying in bed. You have to get your ass up out of bed and feed and water everyone. So, when the kids go back to school, I go back to having several jobs everyday.

My day starts in my moccasins, and you may be able to see that I have hay inside my shoes. One thing I have learned about hay, it’s like sand in many ways, it ends up in areas that you wouldn’t expect. I don’t like to go barefoot, I never have. I put my moccasins on first thing in the morning. I have to have my coffee, read my paper on my iPad and discuss what is going to happen for the day with my husband. He usually leaves a little earlier than I do. I have the pleasure of taking care of all the animals.

Next up, my cowboy boots. When I first moved to the county, I was one of those people that said “I’m not going to wear cowboy boots and become some cliche.” Well, guess what? I do wear them, and they are really comfortable. I really mean it, they are comfortable enough to wear all day. In fact there have been days that I do wear them all day. They are great for gong through the tall grass, just in case there are some snakes. The boots are not going to stop a rattlesnake, but I would have a better chance of survival with these on instead of my other shoes. Plus, there are hills and the hay doesn’t easily get inside the boots, unlike my moccasins.

My Gucci loafers are the most comfortable shoes I own, and some days I have to stand all day long. Pouring wine at events or going to conferences these are my preferred shoes. I have pumps, but I have learned the hard way that wearing pumps at a winery is tiring. If you have to go to another winery, you may have to cross a huge area of all rocks and gravel or even dirt. I just play it safe now and wear some comfortable loafers.

When I get back home, I take off my loafers and get right back into my old moccasins. Ive had these things for years, and until they are worn out on the bottom, I have not plans to replace them.

country, farming, Fountain of Youth, Happiness Project, orchard, random, Saturday Special

The Sounds of Living in the Country…

We moved from the city to the county almost four years ago. It took all of us a couple of weeks to learn to sleep with so much silence. In the spring, there is one refreshing sound that is heard on our farm at night. When it is silent, we know there is a predator lurking around the house, office, garage, or stalls. Most of the time, this is the sound of spring in the country…

 

 

 

Cane corso, Collections and Obsessions, country, farming, Fountain of Youth, Galleria, Happiness Project, Photography, Terreni D' Oro Tuesday

Sock Curator

Sheba, is our Cane Corso. img_9030

She loves socks. She comes upstairs in the middle of the night and steals at least one sock. Sometimes, she even steals one sock per family member. I guess, she doesn’t want one of us to feel left out of her pack. LOL! She is 9 years old, and will turn 10 on December 24th. Her sister passed away last spring of bone cancer. She still has her little buddy Gucci. Gucci, is her four pound side kick. We will take a look at Gucci next week.

 

Here are some of the socks I found around the house.

See, everyone in our family collects something. Sheba just has a thing for socks.

Fountain of Youth, Happiness Project, Throwback Thursday

Lou Lou, and the Fairy Dust

I am going to tell you a story, so don’t judge me. My daughter had an ugly doll that she named Lou Lou. I don’t know where she came up with the name, she just liked it. She always had Lou Lou with her, however Lou Lou was always naked. One time my daughter decided to give Lou Lou a bath. She gave her a bath, and her head filled with water. As my daughter ran with Lou Lou everyone could hear the splashing of the water inside Lou Lou’s head.

The water inside of Lou Lou’s head began to stink. I was afraid that the water would somehow leak out of Lou Lou’s head and spread it’s contaminated water on my daughter.

I came up with a plan to get rid of Lou Lou. I purchased an American Girl doll for her, and hid it in the basement. I took a baby asprin and crushed it. I placed the crushed baby asprin in a bag in the envelop along with a note that I had written. When the mail came that day I acted as if I had got the letter from our mail carrier.

I gasped as I read the letter. The kids wanted to know what the contents of the letter said, and what was in the envelop. I read the letter…

Dear Parents,

We wish to bestow upon you some fairy dust. We limit the amount of fairy dust that we give to the “mortal population”, so much care must be taken when handling this fairy dust. Since we have observed such sweet behavior of your children we are offering you one wish with this fairy dust. Please do not handle the fairy dust until you are ready to make your wish.

Much love,

The fairies

I told the kids…”We have to be very careful.” then I ask them “What do you think we should ask for a wish? My son responds right away…”I think we should ask that people everywhere have food to eat.” WOW! How was I going to get from feeding the world to getting rid of the doll with the stagnant water? I told them…Well, I think that is a great wish, however this is a wish for something for you two. I don’t believe fairies have the power to feed everyone.  My daughter said…I want to make Lou Lou better. My son said that he couldn’t think of anything he wanted for himself, so lets make Lou Lou better.

We took the “fairy dust”, and Lou Lou downstairs. We added Lou Lou and the “fairy dust” to the washer. I told the kids to cross their fingers. We all went back upstairs. I told them I heard something downstairs, so I better go check to see what it was. I opened the washer took out Lou Lou, and put her in the trash. I took the American Doll out, and put her in the dryer. (I did not turn on the dryer)

A little later the kids were ready to go see what the “fairy dust” had done to Lou Lou. We all looked in the washer…I exclaimed “Oh My Gosh, Lou Lou is gone. My son said, “lets look in the dryer. He opens the dryer and says, What the heck is this? It kinda looks like Lou Lou.” My daughter picks up the doll, looks at it and says “this is Mianna.” I was floored! She just made up that name out of the blue. Mianna went on to be a part of her life after that episode.

Have you made up stories to get rid of things?

Design, Fountain of Youth, Fruit, Fruit, orchard, sweets, farming, pies,organic, food, country,trees,bounty,, Galleria, Happiness Project, organic, Photography, Therapy Thursday, Throwback Thursday

Backyard Fun

Gardening with your children is a special time in their lives. We studied plants, animals, art, and science outdoors. When my sone was 18 months old we invested in a vermicomposter. We got the plastic bin, and a couple of days later we got our worms. Red wigglers, then we added  newspaper, that we had shredded. The newspaper was wet, and then we added apple cores, and coffee grounds.

We have had the vermicomposter all these years to show the children they don’t have to throw everything in the trash, there is a better way to dispose of our garbage, and it will  go back to the earth. These same products that we bought at the store, will help bring life to our new plants.

We used our “black gold”, the material that had been digested by the worms, for the plants. We planted pumpkins, tomatoes, basil, lavender, rosemary, beans, strawberries,  peas, and marigolds. We planted our seeds, watered them, and the kids would draw and paint pictures of their growth.

We had an animal that was eating our strawberries, so we looked up the footprints of the animals to try to identify what animal was coming into the yard and devouring our berries. We also did science experiments outside as often as we could. We would research where the ants were coming from, and how much water it took for the ants to start carrying the eggs to the surface. Where did the ants want to take their eggs? What kind of tiny insects are on the leaves?

We also purchased ladybugs and released them in the yard. Counted how many stayed, and for how long. We also purchased praying mantis, and then would track them too.

I also allowed the children to take their own photographs. Even when they were very young they loved to take photos and show me what they discovered. What is in your back yard?

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News

My son makes up news. If he is telling a story he heard on the news, you will need to check the sources. Just today we were in the grocery store, checking out. There is plenty of time to glance at the tabloids headlines. He and my daughter talk about each headline, and give their comments. The comments are usually really funny, so we are the loudest ones in line laughing. We start unloading the groceries, and see a headline with O.J. Simpson. My son ask “Isn’t he the one that killed Michael Jackson? What? I ask, He then states with conviction “He is the one that killed Micheal Jackson”! I then try to correct him…No, he did not kill Michael Jackson! In the meantime I am laughing.

If you have ever seen the skit on SNL where the guy tells all the news wrong you will know why this is so funny.

When Phil from Duck Dynasty was in hot water the news from my son was “Phil was fired this morning from the A&E Network”? What? I asked…No WAY IN HELL is that true. He then tells me…It was just on the news. I ask him…Why was he fired? He holds on to my hand, and then says…”He was fired because he is gay”? Well, now son, I know this is your own special report. Phil isn’t gay, he is homophobic, and it is illegal to fire someone for being gay. WOW!

Take a look at the SNL skit…it is a glimpse of how we get news from my son.

http://www.mediaite.com/tv/snls-second-hand-news-correspondent-gets-everything-wrong-on-weekend-update/