While visions of fried chicken danced in her head…

Today on the farm…

Calypso got over her fear of the tractor just long enough to scoot through the gate to hang out at the chicken coop. If you look very closely, you’ll see visions of Southern fried chicken dancing about in her head.

And I got a new iron. My old iron finally gave out and I was dreading the search for a new one until a friend sent a picture of this iron. What would we do without Facebook to help with our distress calls? I quickly Googled it and read tons of rave reviews and then placed an order. It arrived yesterday and the big unboxing was today. I had the chance to try it out and so far I love it. I’ll be reviewing it later on with additional photos. This iron is awesome!

The week in Review – dealing with Fly Strike

This week has been a week! First, for the last two weeks, we have been battling Fly Strike. I never knew this “thing” existed before I noticed a startling amount of flies circling my dogs. My only thoughts were these poor dogs are in desperate need of a bath.

I remedied that quickly (even though it took two hours). With arthritis in my hands, it is difficult to bathe them as often as I used to. We also just coming out of winter – even though winter for us Southerners is a combination of one day hot, one day cold, and so forth. They run through the freezing ditches after a rain, but I still hesitate to give them a bath on a cold day. Go figure. I guess it is our human tendencies being transferred to a dog.

Since Ryka and Calypso’s favorite pastime is running around the chicken coop, which with rain has become a muddy slop, I thought their ears were muddy. Turns out, I was very, very, very wrong. As I began scrubbing Ryka’s ears, she started flinching. This is not something she does. She loves the attention. When I examined her the tips of her ears, I noticed that the water was running red. I continued with her bath and continued soaking the tips of her ears and gently cleaning them. I dried her off and she sat in the sun to dry while Calypso had her bath.

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Some things never change. It’s hot after a storm.

I noticed the same thing with Calypso’s ears. I may be slow at times, but it didn’t’ take me long to figure out something wasn’t right. When I looked over at Ryka, I noticed the flies were swarming again and concentrating on her ears. After coating their ears with Neosporin, I figured it was time to check in with my best friend, Google.


What I found was called Fly Strike. It was a little daunting because there were some not so nice things listed. I went with the first thing on the list because it seemed that was what they were suffering from. Simply put, dogs with ears that stand up have a landing zone for flies. The flies bite them and draw blood and then more flies come and so on. All I could think was my poor dogs. Their ears were not dirty, they were full of bites and blood and flies!

And, when I say flies, we had to spray to keep them away from the house! I continued to coat their ears twice a day, cleaning them once a day, and kept them inside for a couple of days so the ears could begin healing. Once the ears began healing, the number of flies went down to just a handful. I missed one day this week and boom!, the flies are back.


I ordered an ointment from Amazon and upon reading the label discovered it is a pesticide. I can’t put it on their open wounds, but I can put it around the perimeter of the wounds. It is supposed to repel the flies. I am hoping this works. After speaking with someone from the vet’s office, they are susceptible due to the chickens in the yard, but mostly the horses next door.

After giving them their baths, Calypso headed back to the chicken coop first chance she got. I was so mad! They each had two baths, getting leashed after the second one. Hubby had put sand in the kennel because Calypso like to chase her tail and she had made a muddy mess inside. The sand is not any better. Sand + wet dog = not a happy mom.

When Hubby got home that afternoon and saw how mad I was, he started looking for fencing. I told him I didn’t care what the fence looked like (thank goodness we live in the country) I just wanted a fence to keep Calypso and Ryka away from the chicken coop and the horses. Well…be careful what you wish for around here. He took old fencing from a neighbor’s junk pile and some from ours…it’s a hodgepodge but it’s the most beautiful fence ever constructed. It didn’t take Calypso long to realize she had lost her entertainment, but she’s adapted.

It was funny to watch her though. I was sitting in a rocker on the back porch and she slowly turned away and the head went down and the tail went down and she thought she was being sneaky. She walked a few steps and stopped and glanced back over her shoulder and I didn’t say anything. Normally, at this point, I would be fussing her and telling her, “No chickens!” She turned around and continued a few more steps and stopped again, looking over her shoulder at me. I still didn’t say anything. I knew she was waiting for me to call her back. I finally told her to go and she happily took off. That is until she came face to face with the hodgepodge fence. That was priceless. I would be willing to bet she made at least twenty-five trips up and down that fence line looking for a way in.

Yesterday, I did the simple task of making my Hubby his favorite chocolate chip cookies. That simple task has taken its toll and the erosive arthritis has reared its ugly head. I was in excruciating pain all night and didn’t sleep. After applying heat for an hour, I now have mobility back – typing doesn’t bother it, limited movement of fingers, but writing is a killer.

The bad thing is I will not be doing much today because it is too painful to use my hand.

And, that is what’s been happening in my world. What about you?

My organizing tip of the Day –

Keep an ongoing To Do  or Task List on your desk. I use a planner that has a graph page to the left and the week at a glance to the right. I use the graph page for my task list. You could also use a simple notebook or tablet to keep track of those To Do’s.

And the poop goes on……la dade de….

    The title was either that or Too much time on my hands, but either way, I bet it was the title that drew you in this morning!
     I was breaking eggs into a bowl earlier in the day – and if you follow my blog, you already know my thoughts have a tendency to wander – and the last conversation I had with my daughter just popped into my head.
     During her last visit, I was serving my infamous potato salad and I told my daughter that the potato salad had real eggs in it that day; and my bewildered daughter (I tend to have that effect on people-the bewildered part) asked, “And the others are fake as opposed to real?” That retort would have stopped anyone else in their tracks but not me; the absurdity of my comment never even registered on the Richter scale. There was no contact, no spark, no rumble, at all between the brain and mouth going on.
     Now, at this point, if you have ever been a fan of The Lucille Ball Show, you can picture Lucy having this conversation with Ethel in the all the glory of black and white film. “Now Ethel, you know that the eggs you buy in the store come from an egg factory.” and Ethel replying, “Now Lucy, that’s just ridiculous!” BUT, is it ridiculous?
     The picture that comes to my mind are hens lined up in neat, straight rows in a hen house waiting for the chime of the quarter hour that will signal to them to “lay;” and they all lay an egg. Chime. Lay. Chime. Lay (remember-black and white film.) Chime. Lay. Then those eggs roll down from the nest onto a conveyor belt, joining all of the other eggs and they all roll through the egg wash (farm eggs have been known to have poop on them! That is how you know the difference between a real egg and a farm egg.) The eggs continue their journey toward the waiting egg cartons, where they will then be whisked into storage before heading out to the stores where they become “fake eggs?” Thumbs up if you can follow my logic; INTJs are known for their logical thinking.

     Have you ever pondered the thought of why the yolk of a farm egg is so much richer and thicker looking than that of a store egg? Then, you have never had a fresh farm egg; a real egg. Is it because they are chicken poop gone right? Or wrong? Don’t tell me you never had that thought! I don’t know about you but I skipped Anatomy of a Chicken in college. I just know that there’s chicken poop on the eggs if you don’t clean them. Do you know where the eggs drop from? I only know what I saw on the cartoons and it looked pretty suspicious to me!
     You do realize that there is no ending to this……and the poop goes on……la dade …de…


First published June 26, 2010

Happy Easter and a Recap of Life



Happy Easter! For Catholics, it’s been a week of activities; Palm Sunday, Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Vigil Saturday night. I saw this picture of a German Shepherd on Facebook and just had to share. If you follow me, you know how much I love my German Shepherds!

Since hubby wasn’t scheduled to play music at church Friday morning for the Way of the Cross, he decided to do a Way of the Cross at the local nursing home. These folks have had their faith to shore them up throughout their lives and most of them attended daily mass before they were confined to the nursing home. When you think about it, you realize that it must be difficult to all of a sudden not to be able to go to mass or any Holy Days of obligation. Some of the priests in the area aren’t really interested in whether or not the days are celebrated for the residents. Our priest wasn’t happy with us because we not only decided to do this, but to invite several groups from our church.

Sometimes, they get too involved with the number of butts warming the pews than with the actual person whose butt is warming the pew. That starts a whole other rant I could get started on, but I’ll save it for later. Getting back to the nursing home, the residents were thrilled and the volunteers who attended enjoyed a blessed event. We had Father J, whose vocation is truly being a priest (he just loves the Lord and being a priest) do the Veneration of the Cross and a Communion service. Hubby said if it was successful, then we’d start a new tradition. Well – it was successful so I guess that’s where we’ll be next year.

Word of our endeavor got around and at church Friday afternoon, quite a number of folks said they would be at the home next year.

The Easter Vigil was quite long last night. Along with all of the extra parts of the mass that go along with Easter, three people were baptized and six made their confirmation. Easter Vigil began at 8pm and we walked out of church around 11pm.

We were up early again this morning. On Sunday’s mornings, we say the Rosary at the nursing home. They were so excited to see us again and couldn’t say enough about how much they enjoyed Friday’s Way of the Cross. It does your heart good to know that you are bringing joy to another person.

Speaking of my dogs, they are back to chasing the chickens! The chickens are actually confined to an enclosed chicken coop, but those chickens are worse than teenage girls! Hubby had to give a chicken away a couple of months ago because it was being picked on. Now, another one has been singled out and it drives Calypso wild. Dogs have a scavenger mindset and the last time the chickens drew blood, she chased around and around the outside of the chicken coop. Now, the same thing is happening. Hubby is kind of scratching his head. At this rate, we won’t have any chickens left in a few months. He said they are mean chickens, Rhode Island Reds I believe. Both Calypso and Ryka have been hanging out in the back next to the coop.



The azaleas were pretty this year. Last year only half of the azaleas across the front porch bloomed. I was curious to see what they would do this year. I took the pictures from the porch because of the rain.


And there’s my little monkey. She loves when I sit out on the porch. She doesn’t care to be inside of the screen, but is content to sit in the yard.


One of our priests made these designs from palms. I had never seen anything like this before. He is so talented. After looking at Father’s designs, he mentioned the one the Pope used for Good Friday. His was a work of art.

I added quite a number of stickers to my Etsy shop ( https://www.etsy.com/shop/TheSouthernPlanner?ref=hdr_shop_menu ) last week. I am an organizer and a planner so these are right up my alley. If you are interested in using a planner to organize your days, stay tuned. I’ll be writing a few organizing posts. I have been a planner since childhood. There are so many planners on the market now which makes choosing a new one each year exciting.

I spent some time working on my book today. A melancholy mood will do that to you.

If you missed my post on displaying your emergency information for first responders, you can find that post here – https://mylifeonestoryatatime.com/2016/03/24/iphone-have-you-locked-out-your-emergency-contact/

I wish everyone a joyful day. Don’t fuss your kids because they had chocolate for breakfast and wiped their hands on the sofa. Don’t fuss because they are running screaming through the house. Don’t worry over the spilled gravy. There are some of us who would love to be a part of our children and grandchildren’s lives. The chocolate and gravy will wash away, the screams will silence and if the stains do not come out, then they will become a cherished memory of Easter 2016 when they snuck chocolate for breakfast, or stuck their finger in the gravy boat, a memory I would gladly give anything for.

I hope you all had a great Easter!



My Daily Drama – It's all about the dogs!

I think the worst drama today is that it rained – ALL. DAY. LONG. That means I still have not gone for a ride on our boat!

Calypso and Ryka were up to their usual squirrel watching. I decided that I really need to find them a rubber squirrel to see what they would do if something actually fell out of the pecan tree next to them. The picture really doesn’t show how hard the rain is falling, yet there they were, diligent as always.

IMG_6095 IMG_6100 IMG_6101

You can see the rain in the bottom two photos. Ryka and Calypso love the rain, in fact the harder it rains, the more they run around and play. I don’t know why I feel so guilty when I give them cold water baths. I normally have Hubby set up the hose to the hot/cold faucet outside so I can give them a warm bath. I may need to rethink the guilt. Why is it they whine for a cold bath, yet they play in their pools in the winter and run through the ditches when it rains?

We are really loving our newly screened in front porch, especially on rainy days like today. With the louvers on either end, it is like an outdoor room with a swing.

I can’t end without mentioning the time change. What is your opinion on this constant thorn in our side? This is actually my favorite time. I can sleep late and still be up early! I never ever adjust when the “spring forward” rolls around. In my opinion, the time should be split and just leave it!

Hope your Sunday had some brightness to it!

I am being featured…

Today is my birthday! Yes! Hard to believe it’s been 58 years since I was born. And what a wonderful surprise to find out that author Margaret Locke is featuring her interview with me on her blog today!

I invite you to pop over to her blog (follow the link below) and check out the interview and her books!


I will posting an update on what’s been happening in my life in a little while. If you would like a preview of what’s to come, here it is!  After loads of online shopping and actual trips to Kansas (2,000 miles round trip) and then this past weekend to Chicago (another 2,000 miles) we purchased a houseboat! I am beyond excited! Not only to be getting the boat, but the fact I will no longer be looking cross-eyed due to searching online for the perfect boat. That means the post I did about finding the perfect fixer-upper in Kansas is null and void! We decided to look for something ready to go.

The second big event is that one of my beloved dogs decided to eat rat poison for a snack. Fortunately, Hubby found the container in the yard and we rushed both of my shepherds to the vet. Both are being treated as a precaution.

Yes, loads of stuff has been happening in my world so I hope you’ll be back!