Monday, November 12, 2012

Art Blog

I don't have much time I can call my own, but when I find some time, I might be able to create some artwork!

You could say I have three passions, my family, homesteading and artwork.  I've blogged and posted about the first two here, but have neglected the artwork for too long.

That is changing now!

Here is a hint of what I've been up to lately...

Last week you would have found me at my desk painting very small paintings.  These have all been in an Artist's Trading Card format, which is 2 1/2" x 3 1/2".

I now have two blogs, The Y-Not Homestead and Tatiana's Art Studio.

More paintings will be posted there in the very near future!

Now I must figure out the technicalities of placing links between these two blogs and setting up some sort of way to accept payments for any interested art lovers!  Hmm.

Wish me luck!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Sunday Photo - Zinnias

My garden bouquet of Zinnias!

Imagine one of Cicely Mary Barker's fairies living among the Zinnias.


Z for Zinnias, pink or red;
See them in the flower-bed,
Copper, orange, all aglow;
Making such a stately show.

I, their fairy, say Good-bye,
For the last of all am I.
Now the Alphabet is said
All the way from A to Z. 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


This has been a productive Summer for me; gardening, painting, drawing, illustrating, sewing, reading, and planning the new curriculum.

The latest project was this apron!  I spent yesterday afternoon on it.  Pretty good for a novice I think.

I've had scraps of this fabric for ages, never knowing what I'd do with it.  So when the sewing bug bit, I realized it's destiny!

It's not finished yet, because I want to sew in two rings for an adjustable strap.

On second thought, I've rarely ever had good reason to wear my costume jewelry!

Good idea!
(Sometimes I really surprise myself!)

Linking up with White Wolf Summit Farmgirl whose sending out a call to Grab Your Aprons!


Linking with the wonderful and lovely Deborah Jean at the Dandelion House for her 69th Farmgirl Friday Blog Hop!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

A Photo for Sunday

Onions Aglow

Linking up with Murrieta 365: Straight Out of the Camera Sunday

I recommend a trip over to each one!  They both have excellent photos to share!  Very inspiring.  And thought provoking!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Through the Garden Gate

I've been thinking how interesting it would be to keep a running log of the seasons through photos.  Then I noticed Murrieta 365 doing a First of the Month link up.  Just the excuse I needed!

So here it is, my first entry out of 12.  A view of the garden through the garden gate 'window.'

And since it's still the growing season, it's worth going in to take a tour...

Why do tomatoes take forever to ripen?  That red one is my first!  It's an Early Girl.  The plant on the right is a volunteer and something like a 'Beef Steak.'

Basil in the foreground, Pineapple Sage on the right, heirloom squash in the middle (with more Basil), two New England Sugar Pie pumpkins (far left), and Black Eye Peas.

I have two non-hybrid squash plants called Patisson Golden Marbre Scallop which are heavy producers.

One heirloom variety of a round zucchini called Ronde de Nice (quite prolific too).
The New England Sugar Pie.
 We've counted about 20 pumpkins between the two plants!
And, these are also non-hybrids.

Black Eye Peas.
Very easy to grow, just plant, water, and harvest, harvest, and harvest some more.
Highly nutritious, no extra feeding necessary, and known to be a staple during the Depression Era.
It's worth looking into what the Native Americans grew in your area because those are likely to get you through.
That's why squash, beans, and corn (if I had more room) do so well in my garden.  Those were the crops of choice here.

I grew three times more onions than last year.
I can't live without garlic and onions!

And speaking of garlic, I planted cabbage between the rows (can you see the little cabbage plants?).  Once the garlic was harvested, the cabbage had room to expand...

I had about eight cabbages.  Any left over cabbage gets chopped up and turned back into the soil.  That way, the next garlic crop has a nice soil to grow in which has been almost 'disinfected' by the cabbage.  That's what I read on an authority's garlic website.  We'll see how it works out come June!  Can't wait!

I've harvested beets and potatoes too!
 This batch went to my neighbor.

My favorite kind of Hummer!...Not an over priced vehicle, but the kind that visits my garden!
They are very territorial and they fight over whose garden it is!
They even come up to the windows because they see their reflection in it, thinking there's another hummer in their garden!

Lots of ladybugs to play with.

The tadpoles seem to be happy.  I'll throw in a grasshopper from time to time.

Even though I'm 3 days late posting the first of the month photo, I'm seeing changes in the garden.  It's starting to look overgrown and a little more brown than usual.
That means Autumn is almost here!

My thanks goes out to Jan of the blog Murrieta 365 for hosting this linky party!  Thanks for the inspiration!


Linking up with White Wolf Summit Farmgirl,who is hosting The Country Garden Showcase!
Lots of inspiration here too, check it out!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

I'm No Seamstress

Nope, I'm not.  My favorite tools include staples, glue, and tape!  But those are better suited to paper.  I found, via my sister's Pintrest, a very interesting item.  Un-paper towels!  This lady is a very talented seamstress indeed!  Every once in a while, something spurs me to sew.  I couldn't afford such a great product, so... I decided to try making my own as a Summer project!

Well for reasons such as stitch selection limitations (I only have a choice between a straight stitch and zig-zag stitches on my machine) and my limited skills, I decided to stitch them 'wrong' side together.

I snipped off the corners to reduce bulky corners.

Then, I turned them 'right' side out, ironed them flat taking care to make the opening flush with the stitched seam.  Once that was done, I zigzag stitched down the length of both sides, closing off the opening where I turned them inside out.  These two sides are the sides without the snap fasteners.

So, what do you think?!  A little machine quilting in order here?
Yeah, I think that's a good idea...

That's better!

Next came the fasteners.

I gave up buying paper towels years ago.  Too expensive and so wasteful.  I've been using washcloths instead.  After being inspired to add a touch of whimsy to the utility of cloths in the kitchen, I am delighted to have these now!

Throw them in the washing machine, snap back together, and use again!  YES!

If you don't have the time or inclination to make these yourself, I recommend checking out this lady's Etsy store.  She's got more than just these towels!  And she's good at what she does!  Go ahead, go be inspired!

Linking to White Wolf Summit Farmgirl's The Country Homemaker Blog Hop

Friday, July 27, 2012

Smores Cam!

As promised, here's the "Smores Cam"!

You can see my full post from this last Sunday here!

What'd I tell ya?  Hilarious!  The excitement is palatable (no pun intended...well okay it was intended!).


Tuesday, July 24, 2012


Psalm 23
The Lord in my Shepherd; I shall not want.
He has plans for me and my family.  He is always prepared.  We have all we need.

He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
 He provides peace and rest.  "Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10  I rest in the knowledge that He is providing.

He leads me beside the still waters.
He knows my limitations.  He does not belittle me.  He will not endanger me.  He does not force me beyond my strength and abilities.  He knows how to nourish and refresh me.

He restores my soul;
After life squeezes the juice out of me, leaving only the pulp, I feel no enthusiasm.  But Genesis 2:7 tells me He breathed into man's nostrils the breath of life and he became a living soul.  So now too, God is still willing to breathe new life and breath into my soul.  I was lost, but now I'm found.  I become frustrated, but He gives me peace.

He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake.
 I am like a sheep with no internal compass, my vision is limited, and I am defenseless.  But like the shepherd, He knows the way.  "I am the way, the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me." John 14:6
He alone is found to be true, therefore He is the way, which in turn preserves my life.
"In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths." Proverbs 3:6

 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me;
I become caught up in fear, uncertainty, disappointment, and rejection.  But these deathly shadows do not last long!  "Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10.  In these times, if I stop and think of His glory and power, I realize I have nothing to fear.  Uncertainty evaporates.  Disappointment is crushed by my Rock.  And any rejection is healed by the knowledge that Jesus was rejected by the proud.  So I see my children and am reminded what Jesus said, "Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven." Matthew 18:4 

Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
Jesus is my protector (rod), and my rescuer (staff).  The business of a shepherd sometimes called for heroic efforts to protect and save his sheep.  The dedication of my Shepherd instills great confidence in me.  "He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber.  Behold, He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.  The LORD is your keeper" Psalm 121: 3-5

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
 He provides for me despite the multitude of dangers surrounding me.  The table is spread and everything I need is provided for me as though I were royalty.  How comforting and humbling is that?!  
"just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many." Matthew 20:28

You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over.
One of the things we can expect is that we will be battered around in this life.  We can expect to suffer along with Him, 1 Peter 4:13.  These are times when the Shepherd attends to each one of us on a personal basis.  Our personal physician.  If I keep my eyes and faith in the Proven One, I will find healing.
"And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life." John 3:14, 15
"...and He calls His sheep by name and leads them out." John 10:3
   He revives me with abundant refreshment.  I am known, precious, and worthy.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; 
 Despite all the uncertainty and insanity, I am assured I am precious (Mat.10:31), that ALL things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose (Rom. 8:28). Nothing can separate us from the love of God and our gift of salvation (Rom. 8:31-39).

and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.
There's no place like home.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Summer Excitement

There have been so many things going on this Summer, that I haven't found much time to completely relax.  The best part of this Summer was my Sister's visit with her son and hubby, who flew out from Texas!

They braved the flight, well, hubby did (he hates flying, and that's putting it mildly) just to spend about four and a half days with us.  The cousins got to play with each other for the first time in their lives!

 Aren't they adorable!?  Here they are making bird feeders out of pine cones and peanut butter rolled in bird seed.

And here, we went to a cattle watering trough to catch tadpoles for the garden.

The sieve barely worked because they saw it coming.  So we resorted to plucking them straight out of the water by hand once they surfaced.  Aren't they cute baby toads?  Friends of the garden.

In the middle of our week, a storm rolled through!  Yay!  They loved our weather, it was an improvement over their humid Texas heat.  It was a great reprieve from our own dry heat too!  Best of all, our temperatures are almost always a good 10 degrees cooler than the lower elevations.

Here my sister is taking a picture she so aptly called, "The Smores Cam."  When she sends me the picture, I'll show you how it turned out...hilarious!

Flocking like ducks to a pond!

Marshmallows on the ends of mesquite branches we harvested.
And let me tell you, the boys went to sleep the moment their heads hit the pillow, I kid you not!
So much excitement!

My sister on the left and me on the right.
Our time together was way too short!
But we did our best to talk them into moving up on the mountain and join in on our homesteading!
Who knows.  You never can tell what amazing things are in our futures!
For now, they went back home to resume their lives...

...and the tadpoles found their new home...

...overlooking the toad house and garden!

A good time was had by all!