Monthly Archives: April 2020

Not Today

Zekie is sometimes an amazing dog. (Other times he’s just annoying. )

I recently shared how he did such a good job of chasing away geese for our neighbor’s pond. Well, we were sitting on the patio a couple days ago and we heard geese flying overhead and honking. Zekie looked at us. My hubby asked Zekie, “are you going to get those geese?” Zekie ran to the back chain link patio gate and stared at our neighbor’s pond!

The geese never landed so we had to tell him, “not today, Zekie.”

What a smart boy!


Our main course for dinner this evening was freshly homemade noodles with mushrooms and meatballs. (To make my portion vegetarian, I left out the meatballs and added a fried egg.) I added a side of broccoli to round out the meal.

Homemade noodles are surprisingly easy and always delicious. Just some flour, salt, oil, egg, and water, and you’re all set. You could even add the broccoli to the noodles and have a one dish meal!

Spring Plantings

The weather was sunny and relatively warm, so we got back to gardening and working outside today.

I transplanted blue flag irises, Solomon’s seal, a fern, and a columbine into our new raised beds. I also dig up narcissus bulbs that had multiplied so much that they didn’t bloom anymore from being so crowded, and planted them in various locations.

Then I sat on the patio and read, followed by a walk around the yard. The photos above are of my plum tree in bloom. We have yet to eat any plums from it. Despite being covered in blooms, it only yields two or three plums and the birds beat us to those.

The row of serviceberries is blooming too.

The redbuds are nearly ready to burst forth with their glorious pinky-purple blooms.

The hostas are well on their way for the season.

Even the oriental lilies are off to a good start.

I like to get lots of gardening done early in the season. It really seems to pay off. The weeds are still small and the garden is damp and soft so they come loose with an easy tug. And any plants that are moved when small, grow to be enjoyed later in the summer. Plus, it is not hot yet!

Cinnamon Rolls!

After rising

This was my first attempt at making homemade cinnamon rolls. The recipe is for single rise yeast rolls. It was relatively easy to make them although it did dirty a lot of dishes.

Final product

I will definitely be making these again! I have never had cinnamon rolls that I made myself, fresh from the oven and made from scratch before. The roll was soft, and the brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter filling was sugary, crispy goodness on the bottom.

I so enjoy baking. This recipe was on Pinterest. It is my go to place for finding new recipes.

The last couple days have been filled with gardening.

Yesterday we split enough hostas to fill the back of last year’s new raised bed. We also started lining the English ivy bed behind it with hosta.

Hubby used the tractor to haul decomposed wood chips to the vegetable garden. I split one of our smaller groups of daffodils and ended up planting 51 bulbs. I also split my comfrey plant in two. I like the comfrey because it draws hummingbird moths like nothing I’ve ever seen.

Today we tilled a smaller, new flower bed to prepare it for planting. I also transplanted a columbine, and planted a lily that I overwintered on the side porch. Hubby transplanted a volunteer cedar seedling.

Then, I sat on the patio with the dogs and read. To be honest, I am kind of hoping for rain tomorrow so I can have a break.

Preparing the Gardens

Bread Art

I have been baking a lot of bread so we don’t have to place as many orders to the grocery store. By the way, curbside pickup is great.

The bread recipe I used made enough dough for two loaves, so I baked one and refrigerated the remainder of the dough for when we needed it. The rise time for the second loaf was longer because it started from the refrigerated temperature. I placed the dough in the bread pan and into the oven, and heated the oven to 130 degrees Fahrenheit, then turned it off. The dough raises for an hour normally. I had to reheat the oven and let it raise for additional time.

The dough time got away from and I let the dough rise a little too long. The dough draped oven the edge of the pan as you can see. I turned it out onto the rack upside down for cooling.

The overhanging dough isn’t really a problem, it just gave me a good chuckle. We are enjoying the bread just as much. With some butter and grape jelly, it is quite delicious.


I moved our bird feeder to the front yard this year, so we can watch the birds from the living room. Actually my main motivation was so that the cats could see the bird feeder.

In an effort to get the cats to be more active, rather than like this.

The woodpecker is named Woodrow. There is probably more than one, but we call them all Woodrow. Except for the time when it was obvious that a male and female came to feed. She was known as Mrs. Woodrow.

And yes, the cats did take an interest in birdwatching. So did Zekie!

Books Read-March 2020

I’m a little late in publishing my list for March, but here it is. And don’t worry, I’m still reading lots and will have a list ready for next month.

1. Hero Dogs-Wilma Melville (Audio Book)

Story told by the founder of the Search Dog Rescue group. Tells of working various tragedies with the dogs. Also, the story of finding the dogs for the program, as well as the story behind the dogs.

2. Wrapped Up In You-Jill Shalvis

A romance, as only Jill Shalvis can tell it. Ivy overcomes her rough childhood to establish her own business, overcoming her past and finding someone to share her new life with.

3. The Art of Racing In the Rain-Garth Stein

This is a good book, especially if you like a tearjerker with a happy ending. I found the book to be rather painful, as it deals with brain cancer and a custody fight. Definitely well written. It tells things from the dog’s point of view.

4. No Judgments-Meg Cabot

Bree escaped to a Florida island to escape a past relationship. She ends up taking care of the animals that people left behind after a Category 5 hurricane and finds a new relationship along the way. It was actually a light-hearted read.

5. The Girl Who Lived Twice-David Lagercrantz

This is a book in The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo series. You must pay attention to the details. It is another intriguing story with lots of action. Definitely not a light-hearted read.

6. The Dog I Loved-Susan Wilson

Rosie trains service dogs while in prison. She and the person for her first service dog become friends. Rosie is released and we follow the two on the journey through a part of their lives.

7. The Book of Gutsy Women-Hillary & Chelsea Clinton (Non-fiction)

Kind of like a history book about brave women who have the world a better place for women, as well as the rest of humanity.


Yankee-January/February 2020

Yankee-March/April 2020

It’s hard for me to pick a favorite from this list. They all offer something different. If I went with my gut, I would recommend #6. It covers subject matter close to my heart- the power of dogs to change our world for the better.

Easter Cake

This was our Easter dessert made from what we had on hand since we are limiting trips out during our state’s stay at home order.

I had a box of yellow cake mix on the shelf. I added the grated zest from one orange before baking.

I had the ingredients for vanilla buttercream frosting. Butter, vanilla, powdered sugar and almond milk. I jazzed it up a little with some almond extract.

I took some orange marmalade from the fridge and used it as a filling between the cake layers. After frosting the cake, I garnished it with some strawberries from a local produce wholesaler. During this time of unusual circumstances, this seller will let you order and pay for produce on-line. Then when you go to pick it up, they put it in your trunk for you. No human contact!

And cake makes every day better. Hope your Easter was blessed.