Tuesday, June 29, 2010

And Now There Are Two

Yesterday AD told me to "come quick" but not to bring the camera. He'd just seen little heads a time or two poke up out of the barn swallows' nest. He didn't think I'd be able to capture them with my camera.

Truth be told, I don't think I could have either.

But today - well, that was different. When I opened the door to let the dogs out the momma bird quickly moved out of the nest in an attempt to distract me from her babies.

I watched for a minute or so and saw this little head pop up. Can you see it? Just in the very middle of the nest.

So I grabbed my camera, came back and waited patiently. Pretty soon, up the little head came again.

I waited a bit longer and two little heads popped up. You may need to click on the photo to enlarge it enough to see both of them. There's one right in the middle of the nest and one over to the right.

I can't wait for AD to get home and show him the photos. It will be exciting to watch these little ones grow.

Next year though, we're going to have to be more diligent and try to keep the adults from building another nest on the porch. It's fun to watch the little ones right now but boy do their parents leave a big mess behind!

Monday, June 28, 2010

A Weekend Wedding

Several years ago, about 5 and a half miles east of Dewey, Oklahoma, a long-time area couple built themselves a cabin on their ranch as a little get-away. Soon they added a small chapel. Later a one-room schoolhouse went up.

this sign reads:
"Hold in your heart
the prairie
In your memory
its song"

Before long a replica of a small old west town had been created and they called it Prairie Song.

There's a general store

and a bank.

What would an old west town be without a blacksmith shop?

A post office

and a US Marshall's office also make up part of the town

and of course, a saloon.

My nephew and his beautiful bride chose to be married in the barn. It was one of the loveliest weddings I've had the pleasure to witness.

He brought with him two children and she brought four. Together they have become one family. It was a special moment watching each of them pour colored sands together as a sign of that special bond.

AD and I wish them all the happiness in the world!

PS. The reception was held in the saloon - it was air-conditioned.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Lunch With A Good Friend

My hometown of Bartlesville hosts the OK Mozart Festival every year in June. For those who aren't fans of classical music, it's not all classical. In fact this year's finale was "An Evening with Gershwin."

But the festival isn't what this post is about.

Just a short drive west of downtown is the home of Keepsake Candles. I can't remember if I've mentioned this before or not but about 32 years ago I went to work at the candle factory. I was part of the staff for almost 10 years (before going to work for Phillips Petroleum Company.)

Originally I was part of the candle making team. Later I worked as the secretary/bookkeeper as well as in the store. But that's not what this post is about either.

This is a photo of Alice Ririe and me from last Saturday. She and her husband developed the process of making their unique candles back in the late 60's. The candles that are produced in the factory are wax replicas of antique glassware - from toothpick holders to vases. Check their website to see the variety of candles that are handcrafted there.

Yard in front of the candle factory.

Several years ago Alice decided to host Cafe Keepsake during OK Mozart. Wonderful lunches are served on the porch throughout the festival.

Wall decoration on the porch of Keepsake Candles

I invited my friend, Kristin, to lunch at Cafe Keepsake. Since she's a working girl and an hour isn't hardly long enough for a good visit, I picked her up on Saturday and we drove out.

There were 3 choices on the menu that day. I chose 7-layer salad accompanied by a bit of fruit. Some of you know that I'm not a coffee or tea drinker but that day I chose Island Breeze Herbal tea. Both the salad and herbal tea were very nice on a hot day.

Kristin's choice was the salmon and artichoke sandwich, also accompanied by fruit. She said it was very good.

Ah - and then, dessert. There were a variety of pies to choose from. I had a slice of frozen Strawberry Margarita pie. Sorry about the half-eaten piece. Kristin and I were enjoying our time together talking and eating and I totally forgot to take a picture before taking a few bites.

Kristin had the Chocolate Mocha pie. She was actually the one to ask if I wanted a picture of the pies. You can tell we both liked our choices!

Of course, after lunch we had to do a bit of shopping. The shop sells many lines of candles besides the ones that are made there. Honestly, it didn't cross my mind to snap a photo of Keepsake's classic line of candles - the ones that I used to help make. Shame on me! However, if you enlarge the photo, on the right hand side you can see some small "teapot candles" that are made there.

The reason I took this photo is because, back in the day, AD built those 2 display cabinets in the very middle of the picture.

Personal note to Kristin: I know you'll read this. Saturday was just the best! Let's plan to do it again next year.

PS. If any of you are ever in the area, I'd invite you to visit Keepsake Candles. And, if you do, give me a shout. I'd love to meet you out there.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Five Favorite Photos Friday

This week I took a lot of picture of birds - even more than of the coyotes.

Out of all of them, this is my #1 favorite.

Coming in at #2 was this picture of 4 finches.

Number 3 was this barn swallow.

Number 4 is his mate.

And #5, the two of them together.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

He Came Back

Yesterday about 4pm Mikey started going nuts again. Elliott, Smoke and Dani started running in circles and barking - their way of saying "Alarm! Alarm!"

I quickly looked out the window and there he was - Wile E. just beyond the fence.

Luckily my camera was right near the door this time. I was able to grab it, run out and snap a few shots.

All the while I have 4 dogs running up and down the fence and taking turns running in circles around me. Were they trying to tell me we needed to circle the wagons?

Fairly quickly Wile E. was under the fence and into the pasture beside our house.

Always keeping an eye on us.

Finally he was on his way. It took the dogs awhile to calm down. I got treats for them while they were getting a drink of water. Defending the yard is hard work.

About 8:30 last night AD was putting on his shoes to go out and take Mikey for his last run of the day.

All of a sudden Mikey and the inside kids started up again and I immediately looked out the door and caught sight of not only Wile E. but one of his friends.

Although I was able to snap several photos there were only a couple where you could really see the 2 of them together. But you have to look close.

You should be able to click on the photos to enlarge them. At least I hope you can.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Sentrys At Their Post

Well, that pesky Wile E Coyote was back yesterday morning. This time Mikey wasn't the only sentry on duty. He had help from

Smoke. They stood like that for a long time. Enough time for me to grab my camera and take some pictures. And they stood there for quite some time after that.

Somewhere out there Wile E lurks. I could hear him. Mikey and Smoke could hear and smell him.

Try as I might though, I never did get a glimpse of him.

But he's out there taunting the loyal sentrys

in our backyard.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Rainy Day and Another Sno-Cone

We've seen a lot of turtles lately. Lucky for this guy that he's outside the fence and Mikey is still confined inside the fence when AD isn't outdoors. See, Mikey likes turtles and I'm thinking he likes turtle meat too.

Anyway, when I was a kid my folks always told us if we started seeing a lot of turtles out and about they were headed for higher ground and there would be big rains heading our way.

We did get a lot of rain yesterday but not as much as other parts of Oklahoma.

I took this photo on my way into town to get some lettuce and bread for dinner. (We had BLTs and boy they were good!)

Just before turning toward the grocery store I saw the "Open" sign on the sno-cone stand. Woo Hoo! I'd just treat myself to that Pink Elephant one I've been thinking about. After all, I'd weathered the rain to go to the store for supper supplies. I could have melted! Yea, right.

The bubblegum flavor definitely came through. I'm thinking I still prefer the Sugar Daddy with this Pink Elephant coming in a close second followed by the Pink Flamingo.

I'm so glad we needed lettuce for supper.

My plan is to wait until June 30 and then try the Twilight one.

Note to Deb: I did ask the guy if "cream" was really cream. He said he didn't actually know for sure, it's just what "they" send him. Angela commented on my last post that in her area cream is evaporated milk. I don't think that's what they add to the sno-cones here though because I'm not a fan of evaporated milk (except for using it in recipes) and I'm pretty sure I would be able to taste it. All I know is whatever they use, it's yummy.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!

As in sno-cones that is.

Pickles on Pizza 's own Angela has been posting off and on lately about the sno-cone flavors she and her husband, Aubrey, have been trying this summer. Enough so that I've been wanting to try one.

Then my nephew's wife posted on her blog about her recent sno-cone experience. I took it as a sign that it was time for me to find a sno-cone place.

So last Thursday when AD and I were making an early afternoon run to Wally World we went by this sno-cone place and I asked if he'd like to stop for one on the way home.

Well, I didn't have to ask him twice.

After reading the long list of choices - and there were so many I couldn't get a photo of the whole list in one picture - AD chose a Marguarita. (Due to the number of choices we decided against going alphabetically like Angela and Aubrey do.) AD thought his was very good - a combination of strawberry, lemon and lime flavors.

He gave me a taste and I thought it was ok BUT - - -

I had what is known as a Sugar Daddy and it was WON - DER - FUL!!!!!! And I didn't pass up the chance of having cream added to it. SO. SO. SO. YUMMY!!!!!! It's a blend of wedding cake flavor (not sure what that is but it's really, really good!) and strawberry. Add the cream to it and OH. MY. GOODNESS. GRACIOUS. ME!!!!

I guess by now you get the idea that I really liked my sno-cone. If I somehow didn't manage to get my point across - well, l don't know what else I can add to let you know how simply scrumptious it was.

But liking something that much comes with a problem. I'm one of those people who try a dish at a restaurant and if I really like it, I hardly ever vary in my order on following visits.

And there are so many flavors that sound super good.

So, G1, his girlfriend and G2 came by the house that evening and I was telling them about the sno-cones. They thought we needed to make a visit to the sno-cone place and who was I to argue with them? Besides, I'd get to try their choices for a comparison taste-testing.

G1 chose watermelon. Not surprising. He loves watermelon slushes. Me? I'm not a fan of watermelon flavor - only slices of the real deal fruit but that's neither here nor there.

I tried a small taste of his and I was very surprised that it was pretty good. Not as good as the Sugar Daddy, but better than the Marguarita in my opinion.

His girlfriend and G2 chose something called Punisher - a blend of strawberry, cherry and pink lemonade. I'd rank it with the Marguarita.

I actually chose a flavor other than the Sugar Daddy. The choice the second time around in the same day was a Pink Flamingo. It's a combination of pink lemonade and strawberry. I asked for cream but they'd just run out. The guy was really nice and said he'd put the last dribblings of cream that was in the bottle on mine but it wouldn't be very much and he wouldn't charge me for it.

So the verdict. While it was pretty good I'm sure the Pink Flamingo would have been better with the cream. So it comes in at #2 on my favs list.

Next time I think I'll try a Pink Elephant - a blend of wedding cake, bubble gum and strawberry flavors.

Oh, and there's one called Twilight. Maybe I'll have to go by and get one of those when Eclipse is released later this month.

I'll let you know how they rank.