Archive for June, 2012
Yep, that pretty much sums up how it has been here in NE Ohio for weeks now.
The poor fields and gardens, not to mention the grass, are drying up. I’ve been soaking the garden every few nights.
It’s doing ok but would be better with rain.
****insert rain dance here****
If only Florida could send all the extra rain they are getting out to Colorado and then what is left could be dropped off here.
I guess I would rather deal with this than what is going on out west.
My thoughts and prayers are with everyone involved with the tragic fires.
Do you know anyone who lives in Colorado? Have they had to be evacuated?
Yesterday was such a beautiful day in NE Ohio. The sky was so blue with big white fluffy clouds everywhere.
I decided to go out and lay in the grass and take some pictures.
Here are just a few. Enjoy!
Happy Friday everyone! Do you have plans for the weekend? I have nothing special planned except for lots of work around the house. The main reason for this post is so that I can come back here on Monday and tell you everything that I accomplished. Kind of like my to-do list with all of you holding me accountable.
So here is my list: Laundry (which includes putting away which is the worst part), yard work, gardening, sweeping, work on hypertufa project, making a grocery list, and working on VBS. I’m sure this list will grow. I better get started now. All of this may take a while.
Would love to hear what your plans are for the weekend! Please tell me I’m not alone with all this work I have to do.
Have a great weekend!
Is there a place that when you think about it or see it instantly takes you back to childhood? The Doughty, also known as Troyer’s Hollow, is that place for me.
As you travel along Twp. Rd. 154 just outside of Charm, OH, you would never notice the entrance to the Doughty. It looks like every other pasture gate that you pass. You have to know just where to look for it. There is no sign and no indication that the small gravel road will lead you down into a serene park-like natural wonder. As you turn onto the dirt road you will feel like you have made a wrong turn. Soon you will start to descend down down down and around the hillside. Don’t look out the right side of your vehicle, it’s a steep drop! At the bottom the trees will break away and the Doughty will be before you. I never get tired of that view. The gorge is deep and the hills and trees rise straight up on either side allowing the sun to shine for only a few hours every day in the hollow.
A little history on the area. The Doughty is part of a 2-mile long gorge that was formed by the glaciers that came through Holmes County. The Doughty Creek runs through this gorge. There is a very interesting and lengthy history to the area in which you can read part of here and here. But I’m going to share with you from my memories and from what I’ve been told by my family.
I know that there was a grist mill in the Doughty at one time. It was a thriving area with houses and businesses. From what I’ve been told by my family, my grandma was born in the hollow but only lived there a short time before her family moved.
Fast forward to when I was a child of about 5 or 6. At this time my great-uncle Orie Oswald, my grandma’s brother, owned the Doughty. I remember having family reunions and church picnics there. I remember playing in the creek and catching crawdads. When my cousin Leah would babysit me, she would take me down into The Doughty on horseback. I remember one specific time where she had the horse jump over a log that was in the horses path. I’ve never been much of a horse person so that was a little scary for me. There was also a swinging bridge that hung over the creek. I loved that bridge. Sadly, it was washed out by one of the floods that gushed through the area. The poles and cement that held the bridge still stand. Another memory is of family hiking trips up through the woods on the trails to the caves and, if we were lucky, the waterfalls that flowed after a good rain. Years ago we had a really bad ice storm hit Ohio. It destroyed the trails and the road down into The Doughty. Though the road has been repaired the trails have not. I’ve been told by the caretaker that the trails are passable by adults but a little treacherous for kids. Makes me sad, because I know Cade would love an adventure on those trails.
When my great-uncle Orie sold the land, the Guggisburg family bought it. Yes, the same Guggisburg family that is famous for their baby swiss cheese. They have hired someone to take care of the property and be the go-to person when wanting to rent the facilities. From spring thru fall the pavilions are rented almost every weekend. Many groups like to camp there and Amish have church services there on Sundays. There are 2 pavilions. One on the west side of the creek which is to the left as soon as you enter The Doughty. And the other facility is on the east side of the creek which means you have to go through the creek to get there. That is always a fun thing for the kids. There is a very nice bathroom shower facility for the back (east) pavilion. However the front (west) pavilion has port-a -pots. Both pavilions have kitchen facilities with a water pump outside.
In the above picture you can see the back pavilion and the bathroom facilities are up on the left. In the foreground is the place where cars pass through to get to the other side. This is a popular spot for the kids to play and adults to sit close by and put their feet in the water. Also in this picture you can see part of the structure that held the swinging bridge.
We still have our church picnics here. I’ve had 2 of Cade’s birthday parties here. During the summer when it’s hot and we don’t want to go to the pool, sometimes we will head to The Doughty to play in the water. Much less crowded and it’s free.
It is so peaceful and beautiful. While I’m down there I like to sit and imagine what it was like when there were houses and businesses there. Where did the houses sit? What did the people do who lived there? Was it a bustling hub of activity? The days gone by fascinate me especially when they mingle with my families history.
I found this recipe in a magazine the other day and decided I just had to make it. I cut the recipe in half though because I didn’t have enough berries on hand to make the whole thing. It was delicious and Cade loved it. Thought I would share.
2 pints strawberries hulled and quartered
1 pint blueberries
1 cup sugar (divided)
1 tbsp cornstarch
3/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
6 tbsp butter, melted
1. Preheat oven to 375. In a bowl combine all berries, 1/3 cup plus 2 tsp sugar and cornstarch. Let sit for 10 minutes.
2. In another bowl, mix flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder and salt. In a third bowl, stir egg, milk, vanilla and butter. Add dry ingredients. Stir well.
3. Place six, 6-oz. ramekins on a baking sheet. Divide fruit evenly and top each with spoonfuls of batter. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, until tops are golden brown. Cook 5 minutes; serve.
As you can see by my picture, I did not use ramekins. I used my mini baker from Pampered Chef. Love Love Love my mini baker. Since I used a different baker, I had to bake it longer than the 25-30 minutes. It was probably more like 40 minutes maybe even 45. I set my timer for the 30 minutes and when I checked it the first time I could tell that its was still a little gooey in the middle. So I stuck it back in for a little longer. It came out perfect and looks delicious, don’t you think? Enjoy!
I love the look and the options of a painted chalkboard wall. I knew I wanted to have one in my house but wasn’t sure what wall I wanted to paint. I kept putting it off but finally today I dove right it. It wasn’t a huge project. The wall is fairly small but still a good size. Plus I had to figure out where I am going to put the pine pie safe that was in front of the wall. Well it’s still in the middle of my dining room and I have no clue where I’m going to put it.
Notice the pie safe to the right of the picture. That’s the one I have no idea what to do with. Please disregard the clutter. My kitchen/dining room was a mess while I was painting today.
This is the chalkboard paint I used. See the rubber band? That little tip I got from Pinterest. If you put the rubber band over the opening to the paint can you can wipe your brush on the rubber band instead of the side of the can. Way less mess.
Yay, after 3 coats of paint, it’s done! And I love it. Now what should I write on it?
Do you have a painted wall in your house? What do you write on it?
After I heard a loud thud, my attention turned to my large picture window in my living room. This is what I found sitting on my window sill. I have a pair of Doves that have been living on my property for a several months now. Lots of cooing going on out there. I believe this might be their baby. However I don’t have much knowledge about birds. I love to watch them and feed them but other than Robins, Cardinals, and Sparrows, I’m pretty much clueless. He sat on the ledge for a little while and posed for some pictures. Wasn’t that nice of him? I really shouldn’t be sexist. He may be a she. And I would hate to give it a complex.
Holy Cow! Please pay no attention to the dirty window. How embarrassing!
Do you know what isn’t fair? The extremely short season of certain fruits. Namely strawberries. And I’m not talking about the strawberries that travel hundreds of miles on a truck to make it to a local grocery store near me. I’m talking about local grown berries that are picked and in the store or roadside market within 24 hours. And the best is when you can get out to a local farm and pick your own but I haven’t done that for years. For any of you who love fresh strawberries you know what I’m talking about. Every year I am determined that I want to make strawberry preserves for the freezer. And every year the season comes and goes before I know it. If it could be just a few weeks longer, I would be very appreciative. But I guess it’s one of those things where if I would have access to fresh strawberries for a longer period of time they wouldn’t be as special and I wouldn’t be as eager to partake in such scrumptiousness. I will usually get a quart or two and we will have strawberries in our cereal and also strawberry shortcake for a few days. I cheat and do not make my own shortcake. We buy the little cakes you find in the store. I top it all with a little sugar and add some Almond Milk. Delicious! I also like to add blueberries since they are in season around here right now also. I have been known to fix strawberry shortcake for supper. Not as a dessert but for the main meal. Hey, it’s summer and those berries won’t be here forever so why not!!!
Do you wish strawberry season was longer? Do you have a favorite fruit with a short season that you wish you could eat all year?
I could stand it no longer! I sent that boy into his room and told him not to come out until it was clean. This is what I found when I peaked in on him. I almost sent out a rescue party but figured he was ok since I could still see his legs. He survived and now has a clean room. Whew! I feel much better.