Welcome to Junie's place. Here will be things dear to my heart...thoughts and feelings about family, friends, nature, my crafts, my animals, my poems, favorite music, MY PAST and daily happenings. Hope you enjoy visiting with me! ~~Comments Always Welcome~~ ~It's the only way I'll know you've visited!
Thursday, August 31, 2006
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
New Craft Blog
I have opened a new blog!
It will be devoted just to my crafts-santas-dolls and all my collectables!
Come play! :)
(see side bar-June's Crafts...)
( Aka Ginga )
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
Gourd Santa's Nose
Monday, August 28, 2006
How To Do Gourds (Part Two)
***Close-up view of papier-Mache beard***
How To Do Gourds! (Part two)
Gourd crafts can be created with or without the seeds left inside. With some projects, of course, it’s necessary to remove the seeds, (Birdhouses,bowls and vases, for example!)
If making a Santa, the bottom can be cut off so the gourd sits secure and seeds can be easily removed! (Not so easy, though, with the small gourds used to make the Santa ornaments!)
(Husbands and /or boyfriends come in handy doing this part - as ladies don’t usually have power saws!)
I think it adds something of interest if the seeds are left inside and the finished craft has the noise of the seeds when shaken.
Only problem is…sometimes the finished gourd figure becomes infested with tiny bugs that eat their way out from the inside...tiny pinholes you can hardly see! The problem can be easily solved by putting the gourd in an airtight box and spraying inside with insecticide; leaving the item inside for a few days!
I prefer to leave the seeds inside the Santa figures- even with this possibility! :)
(Lol- If I want the sound of the seeds I will not be defeated by some tiny bugs that you can barely see!)
Gourds are very versatile-and FUN to work with!
I have worked with many kinds - from the tiny ones you find for Thanksgiving decorating - to the long, crocked neck ones - the long dipper ones - the rounded ones and the bowling pin shaped ones…lol - and probably others that I am not remembering!
I have made a lot of things -including bird and duck figures -all sorts of bowls and vases-Bird houses…miniature and full size -usable ones! … Witches and Jack-o-Lanterns! Southern Belles! Clowns!
This post will be devoted, totally, to what goes into creating my gourd Santas!
I have used several different types of gourds in making my Santa figures!
I make hanging or freestanding ornaments out of the miniature gourds.
Almost any shape or size or type of gourd can be used for Santas!
My earlier Santas were made with just painted features. As time went on I added a lot of different things.
beards & fur trim of
Papier Mache-( one small strip of paper at a time (torn strips of newspaper- dipped in wallpaper paste and applied directly to the gourd.)
After the beard and fur are applied I would do the face, working to get the eyes just right! ( ;) Not always easy!) On most of my later Santas I used a hot glue gun to form the nose! (Works for me!!) The mouth was usually just a dot of red or pink- as the beard covered the area quite well!!
The next step was in painting the Robe of the Santa figure. I used a variety of reds and greens. That way, each one was more fun to make and they all turned out different! Some were a very festive Christmas red and some were the old fashioned look- the darker shades of reds and greens. I also used white-white and antique white…depending on what was best for each Santa! I also added gold and silver –especially to the fur trim to make it stand out from the beard! The beard sometimes had glitter added!
After the painting was completed (and there was no overlapping of the colors) and the figure was dry, then it was time to add the trim!
I used a lot of things for my finishing trims…
tiny pine cones (I found these in NC) fake red berries, flowers, holly leaves (I sometimes made holly out of cardboard, cut out, painted, and pinned onto the gourd with round head straight pins - painted red and tipped in hot glue to hold in place when pushed in!)
For the old fashion look I might use tiny grapevine wreathes and jute twine or heavy crochet thread to make bow trims…sometimes shiny bells, flowers and greenery, and fancy ribbon bows with the more modern, brighter hued Santas!
When everything was perfect (And checked more than twice!) then my final thing would be to spray the Santa with 2 or more applications of a finishing varnish!
Later-I did some santa figures with my wood burning tool- omitting any Papier Mache applications. They were quicker but not as showy!
This is a pair of hanging ,full size santas-with painted faces (no papier mache)
The one with the gold robe was done with wood burning tools-(the back part left natural) , the others are with Papier Mache accents!
The little ones hanging are ornaments from the miniature gourds.
And one pic of a group of gourds in the BEFORE stage!
Junie (of the Gourds!)
How To Do Gourds (Part One)
How To Do Gourds! (Part One)
My blogging friend, Skye, has shown interest in my gourds and asked if I could give some tips on how I work with them.
I will try to put together some information that might be helpful in making pretty gourd art!
I hope others of you find it interesting too!
First things first:
In the past I have grown some gourds but find we do not have the ideal climate or soil for growing them. I bought most of my gourds that I used from a grower in Alabama!
Gourds grow on a vine. There are many types and I have worked with a lot of different kinds. (I will show examples of some of them) I have used small ornamental gourds (the kind you can buy around Thanksgiving) and the bigger ones of many shapes.
The gourds have to be picked when mature and be allowed to dry out, completely, until the seeds rattle inside. This process takes several months!
Gourds can be bought cleaned and ready to use, however, most of the ones I’ve used were dried but not cleaned and ready to use!
(lol- guess I just like to do things the hard way!)
To prepare a gourd, for wood burning-carving or painting, the outside of the gourd must be cleaned and scraped to make a smooth surface.
I drape the gourd in rags soaked in white vinegar. This loosens the residue that covers the hard surface of the gourd. This process takes time (sometimes hours) and all the surface of the gourd will have to be covered.
After the vinegar has softened the covering I take a small paring knife and scrape the whole gourd, small areas at a time, until the entire covering residue is removed. The gourd can be rinsed with running water, but I never immerse in water. I do this work at my kitchen sink. ( hope you have a disposal, as this can damage the plumbing, otherwise)
The gourd must be allowed to dry at least a day, before you can begin your painting, wood burning or carving!
After the cleaning of the outside of your gourd, and after it’s dry, you may discover some spots need a little light sanding. If so, use fine sandpaper until you have the smoothness you want.
… to be continued…
Sunday, August 27, 2006
Dinner (Post #3)
You may be thinking, 'My goodness, that girl is really bored to be doing her 3rd.post of today!
You might be right....but please don't go so far as to say I'm obsessed! :)....or possessed, even!
I think of this blog as my diary...so...
Just to let you know we had a good dinner, out . My sister called and invited Charles and me to join her and her husband for dinner-Also, Alli and Tina joined us! We all decided on Shell's, one of my favorite seafood restaurants. It was not overcrowded so we were able to have nice chitchat while we ate! As usual, the excellent bread and butter they bring before the meal and the appetizers we usually get, about filled me up before the actual meal arrived; making it necessary to bring a good part of my meal home! (And Chris didn't mind that at all) :)
...That 2 for 1 Zinfandel I always like with a fishmeal may have played a part too! (in filling me up!)
...Speaking of which.... I feel quite conspicuous, having my wine with my meal, while the others have just water! .... But I try to overcome these feelings for I truly do love a glass of wine (or 2) with my fish!
We left the restaurant, faced with a tremendous deluge! It took us all by surprise! Probably that dang storm brewing out there is bringing us all this rain!
Dear Diary, we all trudged through the rain to our cars and went our separate ways. Charles and I made in home in the downpour! I trust the others did, as well!
NOW!! I'll head over to You Tube for a little light music before I try for that elusive sleep!
More Cowboy Stuff... ( Post # 2 Aug.27-06 )
~~~~~ I'm mad as an old wet hen- because the long post I had ready was lost!!
...I was misled! NOTHING is trouble free!! Things still get screwed up in this world of computers and blogging- High-Speed or not!!!
Will try again but I'm sure this second post won't come near to being the entertaining gem the first one was!...It's lost forever...out there somewhere...
Awhile ago I went with Charlie to see, yet, another bull he's decided to buy! This is a full blooded Black Angus, just what C. has been hoping to find at a price he can afford! And-yes, it's a good looking bull! And already mature-much bigger than Bubba- the one we just bought!
....sooo- here we are now with 3 bulls when all we really need on this little farm is ONE bull who is able to get the job done!
As it looks now, 'Bo' definitely is on the way out. As we speak, C. is down corralling him to take him to the cattle auction , which is held every Monday! :( He will probably sell for more $$ than we're paying for the new bull!
I'm surprised at Chas' determination in replacing Bo...because BO still is producing calves...Well maybe he DOES miss an opportunity-now and then...BUT.....still... :( It's a fact, C. is fond of Bo too...He's doing what he thinks is best! I just hope he won't regret letting the old guy go!
The plan is to have the 2 younger bulls in separate pastures-dividing the cows between them. Of course Bubba will have fewer cows , as the area he's in is much smaller! However- Bubba will get the young girls! :)
The new bull is named 'Midnight!' He's jet black- thus- the name! Not very original! ( Duh!)
Here he is!!
Late Night Music -Aug.26...27
My music of last night was... a wide variety!!
Early in the evening I got into the late & great ( IMHO) Warren Zevon!
(There's a lot of his music to be found for viewing on YouTube!)
I also found some more Sarah McLachlan! I enjoy all of her songs so much!
Later in the evening I viewed some ELP ( a lot is available)...I find that Prog Rock music fascinating!
Ended- very late...or early in the AM - with Jethro Tull! They put on quite a show. I had seen little of them before last night!
LOL- It was definitely worth staying up late for! Am looking forward to MORE Tull soon!
:) Do I remind you of a kid in a candy store...wanting a taste of all the goodies?
Saturday, August 26, 2006
My Life BC (Post#2 for today)
Charles has referred to this time period of my life as BC (Before Computer!!!)
...this time when I was very much into crafts!
Truth is, I DO miss it and hope to find time to get back into making some things!
There's been a lot of talk around the blogs of folks yearning for fall to come....and for this scorching summer to be over! I certainly feel the same way-although we don't have much of an autumn here in Florida as far as colorful leaves go! We DO have different wild flowers growing along the roadsides and meadows! And I love the fall colors of the flowers...lots of golden-yellow and purples!
We hope to be doing a lot of riding on the Victory when it gets a little cooler! Also we hope to make a short trip to NC - to visit my sister and to see some LEAVES!
Thoughts of Fall brought some of my crafts to mind!
Wonderful world of music!
Last night I again watched music videos late into the night!
I watched some superb performances of Early Genesis! What a fantastic group of musicians they were in those early days!
I just sat spellbound while viewing several of the videos I found!
To top the night off I found several live performances of Sarah McLachlan!
Sarah has such a natural and pleasing way of singing-and writes such wonderful songs!!
None better than Sarah-IMHO!
This is so much fun...all this music I'm viewing! :)
We have no plans for the day, far as I know!
Charles has gone to do his 'cowboy stuff!' He's still quite taken with the new bull, but still has him on a long rope until he can make the fence more secure! Hope soon we can put some of the young cows with him! He must be lonely with no company !
Bubba's history is that he was rejected by his mother and was bottle-fed from one day old by a couple of ladies who shared ownership of him! He's very gentle and tame. I hope he stays that way!
Friday, August 25, 2006
I had a fun time looking up music videos last night on YouTube!
Can you believe - 'Alice Cooper!' ;)
Thursday, August 24, 2006
Yes!! Enjoying the High-Speed connection!
It's going good! You were all right! It's soooo much better!
Last night I spent hours searching out and viewing music videos on YouTube!
I watched a lot of WHO and Early Genesis!
Oh! And I found a few Dan Fogelberg, too!
Had fun! ;)
Today is a rainy day here! It's gloomy but we DO need the rain!
It's a good day for doing nothing! :) And that's what I'm doing a lot of!
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Tiger and General
Poem: Each Day
Each day we are given
a brand new, clean, slate…
new ways to recover
what we might have squandered.
A new span of time
to recapture lost ground,
and, perhaps, to find answers
to questions we’ve pondered.
We’re given a chance
to reverse bad decisions…
to change our direction
when finding we’re lost.
A chance to take stock
of the things most important,
and to balance our follies
against the high cost.
Take each new day
to find your direction.
Examine the things
that have led you astray.
Resolve to do better,
to do what’s expected…
to know there is always
a price you must pay.
We always must pay
for each wayward turning.
Sometimes we‘re astounded
when learning the cost.
Those things we encounter-
so tempting - enticing-
in the end, may not equal
the things we have lost!
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Today ! Oh,my! What a day!
Today was such a frustrating day!!
Marc was here much of the day- doing stuff to my computer! Had to reinstall some things for me! We also found the phone line was very worn (Or chewed by a cat-or something)... amazing that I was EVER getting online- or that we ever received a phone call! Marc replaced the line and a battery in my computer...and after hours of fooling and fiddlin'- got the sucker working- somewhat!! :) - Later-tho, I discovered he had the date set one day ahead...so I was STILL having a problem getting on! I re- set the time-and here I am!
Hopefully, tomorrow, my high-speed will be connected!...Only time will tell how that goes for me...(This non-computer savvy person that I am... :( ...this little ole lady who hates change!! ) :( Hope it's not too different and scary for me!! And hope I can still find my familiar places without a problem!
Here's Marc - my computer guy- my SIL! (Thanks, Marc)
I went with Charles to get the new , young bull! His name is Bubba! Where we had to go is waaay out in the pineywoods and palmettos! Every property out that way has KEEP OUT signs! Folks are not too friendly out that way, we decided! Nothing but winding dirt roads... This is where we got Bubba, the young bull.
We saw a couple of these along the dirt roads!
This is a Gopher Tortoise! They are on the endangered list in Florida!
Here's a website with some interesting info!
This is Bubba, after we got him in his new pasture at our place! He liked all that lush, green grass!
Charles is quite impressed with Bubba, I think! :)
We'll see how he works out in the next few months!
Meantime, we will keep BO in the big pasture-with most of the cows. Plan to move 3 of the young girls in with Bubba in the next few days!
LOL!... ( Our life on the farm!)
Monday, August 21, 2006
This is my old iron teakettle which has been left outside!
I like it!
There will be a delay in my High-Speed connection!
As must always be expected -things never work out as planned! (....but , still, I am taken by surprise-over and over again!!)
Wednesday they will connect my service but Tuesday Marc will have to be leaving again! He will be hundreds of miles out of my reach by Wednesday! I was hoping Marc (my SIL) could be here- In fact- was counting on it - to help me get set up!
I almost wish I had never attempted this switch over to DSL! :(
Sunday, August 20, 2006
Update on my moths!!
I found this big moth in my yard this morning! Well-I assume it's a moth of some kind! Does anyone know what it is?
...And the brownish one is one Charles found a few nights ago. He had gone to Wal-Mart for something...found this one outside the door as he was leaving! Brought it home to show me! After looking at it and getting it's photo, we let it go!
Chas. says the 2 are the same ...that they change color! I'm not sure! Hope to find some info on them...just so I know!
:) Useful information!
Charles has this neat wall he put up when we first moved here, which he has put all manner of junk on- mostly old farm impliments and parts of same! Even has a goat's skull there! It's a great place to find fancy spider webs! That's where this moth was! (not in a web, but on the wall) One day I found a snake against that wall...and those possums found that old birdhouse to live in there! I LOVE checking out that wall! ;)
Maybe I'm kinda weird! Do ya think?
Friday, August 18, 2006
Charlie, the farmer!
This is Charles with his hay and Feed hauling deal! This is an almost constant job -making sure the cows have enough hay and Alfalfa cubes! If he has extra, there are plenty of horse and cow farmers around who need a little extra hay and feed!
This old trailer has been in use for about 30 years! ;) Believe it? Of course you do! Just look at it!
today was one of those LOOOONG uneventful ones! Rainy day, too, but that's a good thing! I did nothing but piddle around here- doing just little things, here and there! Looking and thinking of all the jobs I NEED to be doing...but NOT doing them!
Oh well! My life-my house- my jobs not done!
...and Charlie on his old John Deere!
Charlie went to look at a bull he's considering buying! He has the idea that ole Bo is getting too old to do his job with his herd of about 15-20 cows! This is a young bull he's looking at!
If Bo only knew what's brewing he might be more inclined to try harder...even with that cow - Janet Reno- whom he hates for some reason! Maybe it's the horns that turns him off!
Oh well, I can't get involved with all that cowboy stuff! That's Charlie's world! :) He works very hard as this picture shows! :)
This is a picture of Bo-AKA Little-Big Horn.
The black n white cow is Janet R.
( Just a day in the life on the farm!)
Thursday, August 17, 2006
I took the plunge...
I took the plunge and signed up for hi-speed internet service today! It will be in effect no later than Tuesday of next week!!!
Marc will be home to help me get it going right!! ;) Marc is my computer guy!! (My son-in-law!)
They tell me it will be about 40 times faster than my current dial-up system!
LOL- Will this mean I can cut down on my time spent at this computer? Will I be able to do my usual stuff in a fraction of the time it now takes me?...Or will I just find OTHER fun stuff to do to use up the time I save!
We shall see! :)
I'm especially looking forward to seeing some of those music videos I have been hearing so much about!!
Can't wait!! :)
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
Poem: Life's Greatest Treasures
Life’s Greatest Treasures
Life’s greatest treasures
money can’t buy…
the green of a hillside…
the blue of the sky…
birds on the wing…
the sound of their singing…
the promise of Spring
and all it is bringing…
the magic of winter…
the beauty of fall…
and each golden summer…
the thrill of it all…
the wonder of nature…
the fragrance of flowers…
the softness of kittens…
the freshness of showers!
Life’s greatest treasures…
the pleasure of seeing
a garden in bloom
or just the pleasure of ‘Being!’
The faces of children…
their sweet bloom of youth…
their honesty and goodness…
their beauty and truth.
The comfort of our home,
though humble and small.
The love of my family,
the greatest of all.
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Thinking of Dan Fogelberg -8-15-06
Today has been a kind of sad day for me - and unproductive,
to the max!
Last night I got to thinking of Dan Fogelberg's battle with cancer and it brought me down.
I have not checked his site in awhile but I haven't heard any news- good or bad- since last August.
It was reported at that time that he had favorable results, after having gone through treatment for Prostate Cancer!
Dan Fogelberg's birthday was Aug.13th. He was born in 1951.
Dan has brought to us so many beautiful songs since the early 70s- IMO-
he's the very best of the soft rock sound!
I have seen him in concert almost a doz. times... My fondest hope is to see him perform again someday soon!
This is one of my favorite early DAN albums!
-Some great songs here-
Monday, August 14, 2006
Nice lunch with old friends! (post#3 of today)
A smaller group, but it was a good time for the guys, getting together and talking of old times!
I only got one picture as I forgot to take extra batteries! :) We asked the waitress to take this shot of the group.
Photo-L to R
Sandy, Joe, Bill, June, Charles, Charlie and Dolly