Friday, October 28, 2016

The Bees' Knees!

I have been having a lot of fun experimenting on the back deck. 
My brother Pete used to do the same kind of stuff. 

Even while I was feeding the hummingbirds, 
I noticed the ground bees hanging around. 

Then, I started to notice them in the jelly cups I 
put out for the finches. 

I talked to our bee expert, Ray, at the Ag Hall, and he told me those are ground bees. 

I still have not figured out where they are living. 

I started feeding them directly on the deck rail.  

They literally clean it all up. 

Yes, it attracts flies and some wasps, but they stay right there. 

I was using grape jelly, but I have been cleaning out the fridge this week, and 
I had some strawberry jam.  It still smelled good, so I tried it. 

You see they left the grape for the strawberry.  

By that evening, they had cleaned up everything you see, both jellies. 

That's strawberry. 

Yesterday, I put out orange marmalade, I had bought some at one point 
to make some Chinese recipe, and we never used it again.  I thought surely it 
was bad. 

It wasn't. 

Do you notice anything?  I mean, besides the wasp on the right? 


I had never seen honeybees on anything before, but they liked the orange peel. 

Two honeybees with that wasp. 

They are out there this morning, too. 

You see how everything was eaten down to the rind parts. 
The honeybees love it, obviously...

While as soon as I put some grape jelly down, the ground bees abandoned ship and flew and crawled to the grape jelly. 

I just find nature so fascinating, and wish my big brother was here to see it. 

Still not stung.... knock on wood! 

Thank you all for the wonderful comments and prayers for Keith and me. 
I appreciate them all so much. 

It is so hard adjusting to life alone again, but 
I am taking it one day at a time, the best we all can do. 

I pray a lot... and I know others are praying for me. 

Thank you! 

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Following the Road

We all have a road to follow. 

Sometimes we don't know where that road will take us. 

Through peaceful places. 

Up hill...

And down dale...

Sometimes, it's hard to see what lies ahead...

And sometimes, we must walk this last part of the road alone, without our partners. 

My dear husband Keith died on Monday, October 17.  He and I spent his final weekend, last weekend, here at the house alone, with just Lilly and Jester. 

I prayed for weeks that he would pass away in peace, 
and God, in Whom he had great belief, 
granted our wish. 

So, my road is now only my own. 

With family and good friends, I start my new life alone. 

I feel him with me here, though, still. 
It's a good feeling. 

One of my favorite pictures... and one of Keith's too.  

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Not Ranging Far

I have not been ranging far this week, because Keith has been hospitalized again since 

This time has been more serious, and we ask for prayers. 

Tomorrow (Sunday) he will be having several procedures that 
they cannot put off any longer. 

We expect him to be home around mid-week. 

Needless to say, this has been a going back and forth week 
for me. 

I am going to run to do the chickens this morning (now down to 20) and 
then on to the hospital.  Keith called as I finished showering, and sounds
good for the first time in days, so prayerful thanks from me. 

The dogs have been getting walked... on short hospital breaks. 

The weather has been glorious, every day.  There is cloud cover today, but no rain expected until 

Notice my dainty little finger in the shadows? 

My patio flowers have been coming to the end.  I need to collect seeds tonight, if I can remember. 

See that rogue tomato?  It has bloomed and set fruit... there are three tomatoes on it. 

I'll be starting my own seeds next year, the tomato plants I bought this year were not 

I did get to spend a little time with the chickens... I have to get away from the hospital off and on. 

I found this character on his/her way up the hummingbird pole.  As mantises can kill hummers, I was glad that it was literally the day of the last hummer!  

I have left two feeders up just in case some late stragglers come by. 

I did not kill the mantis (you all know me better). 

Here is something else I am doing: 

Yes, the deck rail is getting gooey. 

I don't care. 

I was bringing in the finch bowl every night... now I leave it out.  Once the bees leave, 
the moths come, and they are just as much fun to watch. 

I have three blobs out.... I realized the bees had taken over. 

I notice they found the hummer feeders, too. 

They are making honey for their long winter. 

I'll post as I can over the next few days. 

(still no stings!  I am calm around them, and they don't bother me)