Thursday, March 28, 2013

Thrifting Thursday (hitting the jackpot!)

My dinner plates don't match...

... on purpose.

They are similar in design, but different in color, size, and design specifics. I like to mix them up and love how pretty and colorful they make the table look.

I have several each of these plates, with salad plates and bowls: (Plus a few of another similar style, which I didn't include because they are on the bottom of the stack of dishes and I'm too lazy to pull one out!)

I have just a few of these beautiful blue salad plates... I'd love to find more of this or a similar pattern.

All of these plates have come, a few at a time, from thrift stores. I love all the colors and designs, but for months now I've been looking for some plates with a red design to brighten things up a bit..

Guess what I found at GoodWill?

Just the set I was looking for...  four plates, salad plates and bowls.. in red.

It felt like Christmas... I'm so excited! Aren't they beautiful?

I almost hate to use them.... ;)

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Can you stand a few more....

... little snowy bird pictures?

This fuzzy little guy was such a beautiful bright spot of blue against the gray and white of the storm, I just had to take his picture.

The robins are back... but I'm thinking this guy, looking so puffed up and cold,  was wishing he'd waited a few weeks before returning.

I love the way robins seem to scowl at you...

What a difference a little sun makes. It's still very cold outside (it was 2 degrees F when I did the barn work this morning), but this scrub jay looks happy... and as though he's carefully checking out the rocking horse ornament that hangs in the smoke tree. (Or maybe he's just stretched out trying to catch every bit of sun that he can!)

Saturday, March 23, 2013

winter blast...

Ah... a little blast of winter can be nice. I do love being outdoors, working in the garden and puttering around outside... but I also love a snuggle-up snowed-in kind of day.

Like today...

We were supposed to getting together with M's Special Olympic team today at Red Robin for lunch and awards... I was looking forward to the fun the kids would have had, but dreading the struggle to find something M could eat there. Because of his gastroparesis he must stick to a very low fat diet, so eating out is hard. It's especially hard to eat out with a group of his friends who are all eating hamburgers, fries, burritos, etc. (and he's eating a bit of grilled chicken!)

So anyway... I was happy to see the snow.

I filled the bird-feeders yesterday and they are popular places this morning.

The "little guys" (finches, sparrows, etc) are at the feeder on the south side of the kitchen...

... leaving the feeder on the east side to the "big guys" (magpies, doves, pigeons, etc).

I'm working on a bunch of house projects right now (why I've been so quiet this week), I'll update with some pictures soon.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Happy Monday

Crazy Casa K

Things that make me happy today:


sweet, tart, juicy, refreshing

I eat a lot of fruit.

What a blessing to have grocery stores right down the road that are full of fruit to buy...

... and money to buy that amazing abundance of fruit...

... so that I can have this lovely bowl of fruit sitting in the sun...

...just waiting for me to enjoy a piece!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Do your little bit of good...

Do your little bit of good where you are;

it's those little bits of good

put together

that overwhelm the world.

~Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Thursday, March 14, 2013

~spring in the back pasture~

After three snowstorms (two blizzards) in two weeks, yesterday was a joy. Warm, sunny... a taste of spring amidst all the wind and snow we've had.

Like my new blizzard created hood design? I think it's an improvement... too bad it melted away.

Yesterday was such a beautiful day, I just couldn't stay inside... so I decided to take my camera for a walk around the back pasture, looking for some little hints of spring peaking through the melting snow...

A tiny stream of water snaking it's way across the little pasture, then under the snow...

....where it will quietly continue it's journey to the pond.

I do love our little pond... watching it change through the seasons. Yesterday it's glassy surface, newly freed from ice, reflected both the lingering scraps of snow and the blue spring sky.

A brilliant feather... just one (thank goodness, not a whole little carcass!) so bright against the winter brown grass. I picked it up and brought it home...

A meandering trickle of water making it's way through the gully...

... bringing the promise of a pasture full of green grass.

The thicket in the far back corner of the pasture, sculpted by wind, with our barn standing proud in the background...

... and the same thicket, from another angle, alive with a raucous party of blackbirds who, despite my quiet bird-stalking, managed to stay just one step ahead of my camera...  although I did catch a few of them here (if you look very close...)

The picked-clean remains of a deer not strong, quick, or lucky enough to make it through the cold winter one step ahead of the coyotes...

... and a lovely, muddy, trail made by all the ones who did make it through:


And finally on my way back to the house, by the still snow covered north side of the barn, a few hardly blades of grass, sharing my eagerness for spring, creating nearly perfect circles as they make their way to the sun.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


I'm going to submit a photo or two to be considered for inclusion in the Longhopes Donkey Shelter calendar for next year.  I think our donkey Tucker is especially photogenic, and I've got several pictures of him that I think are good.

It's hard to make a decision of which are the best...

Want to help me pick which ones I submit?

These are the ones I like the best:

Tucker and his buddy Cubby, wandering companionably across the back pasture


Tucker on a snowy day (I love his soft eyes in this one...)


Tucker again on a snowy day


Cubby (a foster donkey we once had), again.. such soft eyes


Tucker, "on alert", watching something up on the road, I love the intentness of his expression.


I love this one of Tucker, but don't think I could submit it as the resolution isn't good enough... I do love the sweetness in those (begging for grain) eyes.

I'd love to know which one you like the best, and why...  Thanks!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Mammoths and Mastodons exhibit

Yesterday we drove up to Denver to visit the Denver Museum of Nature and Science as part of a co-op class through our homeschool group. Specifically, we were there to see the Mammoths and Mastodon's exhibit.

It was an amazing exhibit, not only because of the wonderful artifacts and displays, but because it felt so "local". Unlike the Pompeii exhibit we visited a year or so ago, this was "our" history...  these creatures could have literally walked in our backyard, and many of the artifacts came from Snowmass Colorado. (Read about the Snowmass site here: )

We especially enjoyed seeing the replica of Lyuba, an almost perfectly preserved infant mammoth, found in Siberia back in 2007. (Read more about her here:   LYUBA if you'd like.)


The full size models of mastodons, mammoths, and other ice age animals were also amazing...



Yes, I did take the children.... here is the evidence. :)



There were plenty of fossils and fossil replicas...


As well as some fossils recently found at a site in Holyoke Colorado, that are still encased in their protective plaster casing while they are being carefully uncovered.


This is from an ice age bison... The horns are 7' from tip to tip!


The space itself was beautiful and interactive.

I found it fascinating to think about early man co-existing with some of these huge creatures...

What an incredible way to spend a few hours!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Thrifting Thursday

Just a quick post today, we are off to Denver later this morning to see the Mammoths and Mastodon's exhibit at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science so I need to get moving. The exhibit should be awesome and we've been looking forward to going for awhile now...

I haven't picked up anything too exciting at the thrift store lately, but I did drool over a couple of pieces of furniture that I passed up buying.

They are both beautiful, vintage to antique pieces... I just don't have room for them. (and they were a little pricey!)

I do love desks though... at last count I have five of them, two oak rolltops*, two small secretaries, and one newer desk/hutch unit in the classroom... but it was still hard to leave this one behind.

I'm not sure of it's age, maybe early 1950's?  I love the design on the rolltop...

It looks like a combination of mid-century style (the tall thin legs, light wood, fingertip drawer pulls) combined with a much older traditional rolltop desk style.

It's good I didn't need another desk... or this one would have come home with me.

I also have a weakness for rockers. I love them (I have five of them also... *quietly embarrassed*), and this one I found at Goodwill is gorgeous...

Great lines, very comfortable, no loose joints or broken wood, and probably antique. (I checked the bottom and there was a makers mark, I just can't remember it now to look it up... I should have taken a picture!) Look at the beautiful patina on the arms... It was hard to pass this up, but I really don't need another rocker!

I hope these both go home very soon with someone who will love (and oil) them... :)

*edited to add, one of the rolltops is just "on loan" from my brother, don't worry Steve... it's still yours!