Happy Homemaker Monday

Here comes another week! Of course, I’m still wondering what happened to last week?

What? It’s Monday again?!

Now, I remember. I worked every single day. Today I’m not scheduled but also not going to go in if asked as I need a catch up day. Especially since starting next week, I’ll work every day the rest of July. Lots to do today.

Better get to planning this week. Joining in with Sandra from Diary Of A Stay At Home Mom. Go check out the Happy Homemaker Link Up for a wonderfully encouraging way to start off the week.

The Weather

Here’s the sky from about 30 minutes ago while I was out watering my flowers:

Going to be a hot and humid week. Highs in the low 90’s for it. Maybe heat advisories. They were talking about them last week but I didn’t really watch enough weather this morning to know if it’s changed.

How I’m Feeling This Morning

Tired (didn’t sleep great) but still ready to knock (hopefully) quite a few items off a much too long to-do list.

On My Mind

Just the thought that I wish we could have a kindness pandemic. Just think what the world would look like if kindness spread like the Corona virus. And (forgive the soap box moment) could someone please tell me where in the history of humankind, a mind or behavior changed by being belittled, judged, or called names? Ugh. Not speaking from personal experience but rather tired of all the judgement and negativity I keep running across on different sites. *Stepping off soap box now*

On My To Do List

My to do list is as long as these tomato plants are tall

  1. Clean and organize top of desk
  2. Find tax stuff for husband
  3. Get driver license stuff together for G
  4. Finish laundry
  5. Pick up more shorts as Bass Pro (?)
  6. Clean out and re-arrange fridge (husband moved things to make room to brine chickens yesterday)
  7. Go to bank
  8. Probably a Target run for cleaning supplies (if I can find any)
  9. Whole house clean up
  10. Wash car (inside and out)
  11. Clean out purse
  12. Mow front yard (pushing that one to the weekend)
  13. Still need to make a phone call
  14. Write out graduation cards (find cards I bought pre-pandemic) and mail letters

On My Breakfast Plate

Back to trying the carb cycle thing this week so I had a protein shake instead of my usual yogurt.

On My Reading Pile

My reading took a hit last week. I really need to finish The Little Village of New Starts by Donna Ashcroft. I’m close. In other exciting reading news, I discovered the library opened back up for inter-library loans. Hooray! Our local branch doesn’t always have the best collection and now I can get some books I’ve wanted to read that are at the main KC branch.

TV Viewing

Not too much here either. We did watch the movie, Monuments Men on Friday night. Really interesting and based on a true story. A few episodes of Fear The Walking Dead yesterday (laundry folding show).

On The Menu This Week

MONDAY: Maybe taco salads (taco meat in freezer or chicken from yesterday) *J has a baritone lesson at 6:30*

TUESDAY: Fish, baked sweet potatoes, chopped Asian salad *I work 8:30-4:30*

WEDNESDAY: BBQ chicken (from freezer), rice, salad *I work 8:30-1:30* *We have a family birthday celebration*

THURSDAY: Spaghetti, salad, bread sticks

FRIDAY: French toast, sausage or bacon, fruit (might move this one to a different day)

From The Camera

The neighbor’s mighty oak tree near sunset last night

A new bloom

And the summer garden flag

Looking Around The House 

I see several projects waiting. Also, need to clean but it’s not disaster level at least.

On My Prayer List

Family, friends, strangers. For a more compassionate and kind world. And of course, an end to this virus.

Quote For The Week

Not sure if this is a quote or just a saying but I saw it on a tee-shirt. And thought it was great. My new motto for the rest of the year!

Gratitude, Grace, and Grit.

Isn’t that something we all need right about now?

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What are your plans for the week ahead?

 

My Little Chickadee

Should be plural as a few visit my bird feeders.

I’ve learned to recognize their unmistakable calls. 

Here’s one more photo but it’s a bit blurry. Most my snaps this week were either in low light or as I was in a hurry and so…blurry. This is one of the best of the blurry photos.

The rest were too blurry to even consider sharing.  Though no more bird photos to share, I did spot a decent variety of birds during the week.

Earlier in the week:

Monday, I watched a pair of doves fly into a conifer tree. And quickly out of it as they realized the noise and activity level of the preschool children playing below them.

Tuesday, I watched more mourning dove antics as one of my backyard doves tried to claim the “king of the hill” spot on top of the bird feeder. I also watched a pair of downy woodpeckers eat at the suet feeder.

Wednesday, the halfway point of the week arrives, things start to get a bit blurry. I think this day I spotted an Eastern blue bird sitting on a wire (90% sure). I also spotted the usual turkey vultures over the park land beyond the playground boundary. And robins. At home and at school.

Later in the week:

Thursday, yet another working day, I tried for some early morning shots of our regular bird feeder customers. Lots of blurry house finch photos I won’t show you. Here’s a non blurry photo of my cone flowers instead.

You can see the fallen petals from my bee balm on the greenery. Maybe some day my cone flowers will be like the school ones and almost as tall as me. Right now they are just barely a foot tall.  Thursday evening, with most the light gone and the lightening bugs arriving, we spotted our hummingbird eating at the feeder and taking a few quick breaks on the fence. No photos, too dark outside.

Yesterday, for a brief moment, I enjoyed watching a mockingbird hop on a fence at work. And spotted a few sparrows. Again, I spotted the doves near the playground. Perhaps they love the children, too?

My July looks quite busy but I’ll still be watching for the birds and trying for better focused photos.  I’ll end my post with one more fun photo to make up for the lack of bird pictures.

My mushroom fairy house. I think a fairy moved in and planted actual mushrooms!

My fairy yielded quite the crop! If only our actual garden fared so well.

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What birds did you spot this week?

Joining in with the Bird Depot hosted by Anni over at I’d Rather B Birdin‘.

Happy Homemaker Tuesday

Yesterday got away from me. Ran out of time for a quick morning post and then, ran out of energy for an evening one. It’s going to be another full day of work so I’m trying to get this post up this morning. Hopefully, I’ll have more success than yesterday.

Let’s get straight to it. Joining in as always with Sandra over at Diary Of A Stay At Home Mom.

The Weather

Typical summer: HOT. Hotter when wearing a mask. I think the news said high today was supposed to be 93. Higher heat index. More heat next week. Always a chance of rain though it doesn’t look likely today.

How I’m Feeling This Morning

Glad to be getting back into my crazy routine of work but still a bit tired from yesterday. It was a long day with working 8:30-5:15, getting home and pretty much turning around to take J to his baritone lesson.

On My Mind

Just the stuff I’d like to get done this week, whether I’ll get called in tomorrow and Thursday as well. And how to keep from melting at work today, ha!

On My To Do List

  1. Still a few leftover items from the last list (mainly phone calls and work stuff)
  2. I did most the laundry on Sunday but do need to wash my work tee shirts (I air dry them so need some time)
  3. Clean out the fridge
  4. Grocery shopping (tentatively slating it for Thursday morning)
  5. Find some documents for G so he can renew his driver’s license

On My Breakfast Plate

Haven’t eaten yet but it’s gonna be the usual: Chobani Flip yogurt, a bit more coffee, and two gummy vitamins.

On My Reading Pile

I’m almost finished with The Little Village of New Starts by Donna Ashcroft. Enjoying it quite a bit more than I expected.

TV Viewing

We watched Independence Day on the Fourth of July (tradition) and I spent most of Sunday watching Fear the Walking Dead for my laundry folding show.

On The Menu This Week

Husband and kids are going to be on their own a few days this week…might get called in to work more (the week has that kind of feel to it)

MONDAY: Husband made spaghetti *I worked 8:30-5:15* *J had a baritone lesson at 6:30*

TUESDAY: No idea, there’s some grilled BBQ chicken in freezer, maybe that. *I work 10-6*

WEDNESDAY: Pork chops and baked potatoes?

THURSDAY: Chicken legs and salad or maybe OUT. *J is having a friend over*

FRIDAY: Same as Thursday *I work 12-5*

From The Camera

If you read my post about the baby blue jay, you might think this cat is looking up at it. Nope, I couldn’t see a single thing in the backyard tree she was looking up into last week.

 

Does anything say Happy Fourth of July more than an 800 shot Saturn Missile? I think not. Our neighbors answered with one of their own. It was our finale, their show lasted a bit longer than ours.

And finally, did anyone see that full moon on Saturday night? Spectacular!

Looking Around The House

Amazingly enough, not awful.

On My Prayer List

Preschool student who told me his dog passed away from blood cancer last week (and his family), coworker who’s father in law is in hospice and nearing the end, friend having surgery later this week, all the teachers and students (we’re exempting our preschool kids) starting summer school wearing masks. Family, strangers.

Quote For The Week

Of all things love is the most potent.  (Maria Montessori)

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How’s your second week of July look?

Red, White, And Blue Jay

Getting my post up a bit early today as later, we’re having my husband’s sister and her family over this afternoon to celebrate the Fourth of July.

Earlier in the week, I thought it would be fun to capture red, white, and blue birds in honor of our holiday. Figured I’d have to go for a walk at my “secret” (not anymore, SIGH) park in search of blue birds. Week didn’t work out quite like that. However, the blue birds came to me in the form of a little blue jay family.

RED

However, first the red birds! What else do you think of when I say red bird but a cardinal (or a baseball team across the state from us. We’re all “Royals” over here.) 

However, our resident house finch sports a bit of red as well.

WHITE

White birds are harder to spot in these parts. So, ironically, the red-bellied woodpecker agreed to loan me a shot of its white upper belly for this post.

BLUE

The blue part of this post comes with a story! About a blue jay family and a little gray cat.

Our little gray cat likes to do this out on the front porch or the back deck. She usually snoozes happily while the birds eat at the feeders.

One of her favorite front porch napping spots.

Yesterday, while she was out there, I heard a racket. You really can’t miss the call (shrill of an upset parent) blue jay.  I found one on our porch railing screaming at our little gray cat.

I stepped out in the yard to see what was happening. The cat who had been on the porch followed me. The blue jays (there were two now) continued to scream at us both. Why?

Aha! A baby learning to fly.

The cat and I wandered around to the back yard and the blue jays went back about their business. The cat found a new peaceful place to sleep (she never even noticed the baby bird!) and I went back to whatever I was doing.  Didn’t give it any more thought. Later, the same front porch racket. Same thing. Cat trying to nap.

Blue jays fussing (loudly) at her. Louder than last time though. And just as much fussing at me the moment I stepped out the door. Soon, I discovered why. Baby blue jay was hanging out quite low in the tree.

Not the greatest photo as this happened around 7:30 PM and I was losing light fast. Here’s how low the little thing managed to get in the tree.

It’s just a little to the right of the fence post up there. I immediately took my “assistant” off duty (though, she still hadn’t noticed the baby bird!) and brought her inside. Worried that perhaps the baby was injured but my husband said it was probably just resting. It was still there after dark.

Hooray For The Baby Jay!

Honestly, I didn’t expect it to make it through the night. We have plenty of other outdoor cats around here as well as raccoons, possums, etc. However, happy news to report. My husband saw it there this morning. Hooray! Baby bird survived the night. And flew off with its parents to the another house (I heard them fussing a bit but not as much).

The cat is also happy to get her napping spot back for awhile today.

What’s a cat gotta do to get a decent nap around here?

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In other bird news, I heard a hummingbird call for the first time (well, the first time I could identify it) this week! A majestic blue heron flew over this morning. Other birds spotted around the yard include sparrows, downy woodpeckers, robins, hummingbirds, grackles, and mourning doves.

What birds did you spot this week?

Linking up later with the Bird Depot hosted by Anni over at I’d Rather B Birdin’.

 

Half Way There (Tomorrow!)

It’s Half New Year’s Eve! Tomorrow is the official halfway point of 2020. Are you going to take some time to ring in the second half of the year? 

I think we’re definitely going to have a small party (just the 4 of us) to celebrate making it this far. Nothing too fancy, probably just the basics: food, games, and more food. Maybe a few early fireworks? I plan on finding some of those little champagne popper bottles somewhere later. And tomorrow, I think definitely calls for another round of black-eyed peas and cornbread at the very least.

Apparently, not the correct kind of mask to wear in public 😉

Before I continue this post, let’s look at the official numbers. Masks now required pretty much every where in our area. Probably not a new thing for some of you but definitely a new thing for our area (we were already wearing them in the stores, etc but now they’re officially mandated for all indoor & outdoor public places in our city/county. I think Kansas goes statewide tomorrow. We’ll see if Missouri follows suit.)

Numbers and COVID-19 Info for Our Area

Cases statewide:  21,927

Total deaths:  1,017

Total Tested*

PCR tested:  373,007 (fancy term for nasal swab testing)

Serology tested:  42,984 (fancy term for blood test for antibodies)

*They’ve changed the reporting on these numbers. Now dividing out the two types of tests. Actually, the whole website is updated and in a dashboard format. A lot easier to read and understand.

In the Kansas City Area:  2,380 and 31 deaths (not sure on this number…it’s not showing deaths except on the map and the two counties together add up to 35. I think the sadly, the right number is likely 35.)

Our local county: 1,204 and 24 deaths

And the number of cases within our zip code:  160

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A Few Fun Things For The Week

As you might have guessed from the first photo in this post, my bee balm bloomed! One of my favorite flowers that sprang up as a surprise in the flower garden last year!

One of the stranger items on my list of all the things I wanted to do this year, paint the kitchen trash can. Accomplished that one yesterday. Forgot to take a before photo except of the lid. And the camera hates our wall color (never gets it quite right even with editing, it’s more green than beige) but I think the photos give a general idea. Let’s not throw 2020 out quite yet, let’s just redecorate it! If only it were that easy to fix. 

We’ve been having a pretty relaxed and subdued week so far. Feels like a holiday week which is nice.  I still need to get out and plant my flowers from Monday. I’ve have some of these just about to bloom already but I have empty spots so decided to cheat and fill it one with some more purple cone flowers.

(Now, I’m going to cut this post short because “behind the scenes” I’m getting nonstop demands for attention from a certain little gray cat. Hard to type with cat butt in my face and cat paws walking over the key board every few seconds).

I’ll leave you with one last thing, a special song for all my 80’s music fans, before I end my post. Seems appropriate not only for our Half New Year’s Eve but for 2020…indeed. Enjoy!

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