Bovine Baby Newborn

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On my way home from riding the other day, I saw this brand new baby calf. It obviously hadn’t been in the world long. I didn’t want to disturb the happy family, so I didn’t get a very close picture, but trust me on the newness and adorableness of this little calf! It was still a little wet, and its hair was quite curly!

Super Quick Baguette Pizza

It’s been a long day. It’s late, and you’re tired and hungry. What to do? Find the quickest and easiest possible supper, of course, and hope it’s not peanut butter.

This is a lot easier to do in the summer than any other time of year. When you have good fresh tomatoes and some basil, your possibilities really start growing; there are so many delicious ways to eat them! Super Quick Baguette Pizza has got to be one of the easiest.

Any time you can make your own bread, it will make everything more delicious, but you can also pick up pretty good bread from a grocery store’s bakery section. Our local store actually does a good baguette. This works out especially well, because baguettes are one of my favorite types of bread, and are kind of a pain to make.

I start out by slicing a section of baguette in half and drizzling the halves with olive oil, and sticking that in the oven for a few minutes. In the meantime, you can prepare your other ingredients. Just slice some fresh mozzarella, a tomato (I used an Italian variety called Pompeii), a few leaves of basil, and chop some garlic. Take the bread out of the oven, and layer on the mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil and garlic. Add a little sea salt and pepper and put it back in the oven until everything is warm and the cheese melts. That’s all there is to it!

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This is a good way to eat tomatoes for July, because they are just starting to ripen and you may only have a tomato or two ready. The garlic was especially good because it came fresh from the farmers’ market, but any grocery store garlic will do if you don’t have access to fresh.

It sure beats peanut butter!

Onion Harvest

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Onion Harvest

The traditional date to harvest your onions is the fourth of July. Since it was raining so much, we were a few days late getting it done. We fortunately did manage to get them pulled close to that date, though, so now we have our little crop of onions drying out in the garden house. We usually don’t have much luck with onions, so for us, these are pretty good and big!

Paint and Polish Don’t Mix

It’s a good thing that I do my own manicures. Behold my poor abused nails after two days of cleaning tack and painting:

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Yuck!

I meant to post a picture update of the town house project tonight, but by the time we quit for the day, it was too dark to really be able to tell what we had done. Alas! I’ll try to remember to take some pictures tomorrow, when I’m sure there will be enough light.

So far, we have gotten the panelling washed and primed, and we did a test area of paint in one spot to make sure we wouldn’t have to use another coat of primer. Luckily, it seems to be working. Whew! We have also primed and painted the closet in one bedroom, and primed the other. We’ve also started painting the bedrooms. They’re just sheetrock that has already been painted, so no priming was required. The closets had to be primed anyway, due to fifty years worth of marks on the walls in there that would simply not come out. They were also still painted the groovy colors of the sixties that they were originally – bright yellow and turquoise! These colors were long ago covered in the bedrooms with a dingy antique white. I would actually have loved to have left them the original colors, but unfortunately the paint was in too bad a shape. Instead, they will be the current color of the rooms: pale blue and light green.

It’s very exciting to see progress being made. Painting is so much more fun than preparing to paint – washing walls, sanding trim, cleaning it all up… It’s such a drag! One thing i love about painting is getting immediate results. You run your brush or roller along the wall and you have an instant transformation! I am hoping to wield that transformative magic to great effect tomorrow in the bedrooms, and perhaps on some more panelling. 

Tennessee State Facts

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Tennessee State Facts

Here is a lovely example of the Tennessee state wildflower, the passionflower. These extraordinarily exotic-looking flowers grow on small vines pretty much anywhere you will let them. This is one of a few vines growing along the side of the driveway.

After the blooming period ends, these vines will produce small green fruits with a smooth, tough rind that are mostly hollow inside. They are shaped a bit like watermelon, but obviously much smaller. You can usually find these pretty wildflowers in the same places each year.

Washout

We were planning on having a picnic for the Fourth of July, but we soon realized we would have to grill out another day. It poured, and it only just stopped pouring. (It still rained some today, mind, but less than it didn’t.) In a break from the rain, it was dog walking time, so we headed down the driveway with the dogs. On top of the wet grass and puddles, the creek was high and fast and muddy.

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I’m actually pretty surprised that it didn’t get out in the road during the big rain, though I supposed it could have happened at night when I couldn’t tell.

Needless to say, some dog drying was necessary after the walk – one of the few downsides of walking on a rainy day.

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I think the cooler temperatures and fresh air make up for it, though.