Dogs at the Farmer's Market...a Corvallis Conversation...

I own 3 HUGE dogs! Each weigh over 100 pounds and they are goofy, loving, slobbery boys. I don't take them downtown in order to entertain myself. Yep, they pretty much stick to our property, the field beside our house, and adventures out to Peavy Arboretum, where they run, swim, and act like....dogs!
I am a victim of a vicious dog bite. In 1994, a Great Dane lunged for my throat as I walked on a sidewalk near CHS in Corvallis. I threw my arm up just in time for the dog to chomp down on my humerus. The dog's canines ripped through my skin, leaving 2 5-inch gashes. that are beautiful scars today. The dog's smaller incisors pinched and tore the skin just above the inside of my elbow. The force of the dog's bite almost broke my arm, leaving me with a tremendous black bruise that lasted more than 8 weeks. My arm swelled and I was unable to wear anything with sleeves for more than a month! The dog was destroyed by the Corvallis Police Department, due to the fact that it had a record of previous bites which would have required the owner carry a $150,000 insurance policy, which he couldn't afford, so death was the only option. It's shots hadn't been updated in years, which meant I had to go through a routine of antibiotics, for prevention. It was tragic to see the dog die. However, I really don't give a shit. My daughter was only 4 at that time and it would have been her face he bit off, had she been his victim.

I love dogs...but I hate when people put me in a position of fear or irritation when they inflict their dogs upon me in public places. I feel funny saying that I am sometimes now afraid when unfamiliar big dogs approach me. I have that "moment" of hesitation that drives me insane!

I am on the side of those folks who feel that our Farmer's Market on Saturdays really isn't a place for dogs. Dogs do not shop for organic, fresh produce. Dogs sniff crotches, poop, and snarl at other dogs. For those who state, "By taking my dog to the Farmer's Market, I'm giving him a chance to socialize."Bah, hum bug. You've got a fricken dog. Take it running in a field. Invite people over to your house to teach your dog to say, "Hello." Don't bring him downtown to walk on the sidewalk and get the attention you must crave, hoping someone says, "Oh, look at that ugly dog. Isn't he funny?" I want to buy my veggies without a cold nose next to my butt...


Sunday in the Garden!

The great wall of champagne bottles!
One ticked-off Scrub Jay! I was near the nest!
Witch Hazel starting to bloom!
Tulips that are so sunny!
My "fault line" replica!
Cardoon is already on its way to taking over this herb bed!
Leather-Leaf Hydrangea! Oooo...pretty buds!
The 3 huge crabapple trees along the northern side of our property are full of European Honey Bees, which makes me happy!


Hush Puppies!

This recipe came from my Grandmother Dorothy Pearl Gilmore, who is still living in Shawnee, Oklahoma! She just celebrater her 87th birthday and is still going strong! This is in her honor...
3/4 cup cornmeal
1/4 cup flour
2 T. baking powder
2 T. sugar
1 t. salt
1 egg
finely grated onion
just enough milk to make a soft dough.

Gently mix all ingredients together. Scoop a portion of dough into your hand, about the size of a silver dollar. Roll it into a link-sausage shape (like a weiner dog!) and drop into hot fat. Fry until golden brown.

While they're sizzlin' in the fat, don't forget to tell them to hush, puppies!
Eat 'em while they're hot


Olympic Trials Have Ended...and They're Back!

They're back! I picked up my daughter and her running coach, Meghan, this evening at PDX! They'd just returned from a whirlwind trek to Boston! Meghan was one of the 3 Corvallis Women who qualified for the 2008 Olympic Trials for the marathon! She, along with Penny and Johanna, were heroes! My daughter's motivation to continue working toward being a world-class runner, herself, has blossomed, as she spent the last week rubbing elbows, running, and visiting with the best runners America has!
This photo was "borrowed" from our local paper.
Not only did Beautiful Daughter witness the trials, she also watched the Boston Marathon! She SAW Lance Armstrong running! She, once again, was surrounded with an uplifting, motivated, positively-driven group of folks! Very, very good therapy...


Trader Joe's...

Carnivorous Hippy and I went to TJ's today. We have to drive about an hour to get there. One is in Eugene and one is in Tigard/Tualatin. We went to Eugene.
It's sort of dumb, if you really think about it, to drive that far to buy $78 worth of food. However, there are things in that store that cannot be duplicated in any of our local food facilities.

I sent an e-mail to Trader Joe's, via their website, awhile back, asking for them to PLEASE build a store in our area...a college town with many health-conscious folks! Their reply...well, they don't want there to be a reduction in business to their other stores "in the area." I replied that they aren't really in the area and that they were popular enough that they could sustain with those folks who live in those areas. We, in little Corvallis, along with the small surrounding communities (Philomath, Lebanon, Albany, Blodgett, etc) could keep a store afloat in Corvallis!

Well, they disagree, so we drive 2 hours to get our favorite curry sauces, European cheeses, and 3-buck-Chuck wines. You know, though, the drive is fun when you're with a good friend and you get to chat the entire time, uninterrupted! Thanks, CH!


Those "GONS" are at it again!

I'll admit that I stole this.
Go ahead...bring on the handcuffs.
This is worth it! :)


Carrot-Diggin' Basset Hound!

This is where there USED to be carrots! This is the proof that I planted carrots!
This is the boy who dug and ate the carrots!
Theo, you ol' hound dog! I've been wondering what's been happening to all of the carrots I planted last Fall! I stepped out into the garden last week and picked some real beauties! The dogs were all with me...and Theo was watching! Err...at least he's getting a balanced diet...cat food, candy wrappers, empty cans in the recycling bin, and carrots! Oh, yeah, and some Lamb and Rice Chow...


April in the Garden

Wow! In Oregon we go from 29 degrees to 82 degrees in just a few hours! I was almost TOO hot today! I hate when sweat drips into my eyes! However, the sweaty job is worth the outcome! See for yourself! My camillia reminds me of Mary Engelbreit!
Pasque Flower. I planted this 5 years ago and it's truly at its peak this year!
Violets and Grape Hyacinth can easily take over my garden beds, so I regularly cull both out. However, these look beautiful at the base of one of our arbors.
Grr...one of 'em got me today while I was moving a garden bench!
Hubby and I built this new path yesterday! I removed all of the old stepping stones, leveled the ground, spread out weed-block fabric, and we spread the new gravel. It compacted easily and I'm so relieved that I'll no longer have to crawl on my hands and knees, pulling out weeds and plant growth from the old path! It's almost 90 feet long, so it used to take days each month to keep organized!
Little yellow violets!
Apricot Quince. Very pretty and very fragrant.
Traditional quince...right on the corner of our property. We cut it back hard last Fall and it's got a lot more architecture now!

Blue-ballin' it near the front door.
Pretty, funky tulips in a giant tea cup!
My new little toadstools in freshly laid mulch.
Tulips in the sun.


Taking a Big Step Back!

She'll be leaving in mid-August, off to start her own life as a college freshman.
She might be 1000 miles away.

A few months ago, I had this horrid feeling inside, knowing that she'd be leaving. I kept wondering, "Who'll keep the conversation lively at dinner? How can I face not seeing her each day?"

Well, let's just say that biology is kicking in, just like it did about 1 month before she was born. I remember I had these overwhelming urges to clean house, sew, and bake casseroles to store in the freezer. I couldn't figure it out...that is, until I heard about the "nesting instinct."

Today, it's sort of the opposite. I'm cleaning out the nest. It's time for her to go. She's "difficult" and I do and say everything wrong.

I'll will miss her so much and have a very strange feeling about the fact that 18 years flew by so quickly. But, I'll look forward to "peace" and "calm" in our home. It's time for her to go.