Our Mini Nature Preserve

Encourage Birds & Wildlife with Food, Water, Shelter.

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Water – There are many water sources.NWF_certify_sign_CWH_print
  • Many regular, and a heated birdbath.
  • An outdoor two tier water fountain.
  • A recycled bathroom sink is an in-ground drip fountain.
  • A recycled tub is an in-ground pond -water for wildlife.
Shelter – There is a multitude of places to hide and survive.
  • We made and placed four different pine bird boxes.
  • We have a Wren nesting pipe house.
  • We hung nesting baskets under our Grape Arbor.
  • A Purple Martin house, that is really a Wren and Sparrow condo.
  • We have a Brush pile for the birds, small mammals, and invertebrates.
  • We leave Leaf Litter over winter for the small mammals, and invertebrates.
  • Plus we provide what we call a ‘nesting box’ of goodies to help facilitate their nest building. It contains: small twigs, pieces of straw, leaf litter, grass clippings, cotton string, and cotton dryer lint (only cotton should be used).
Food – There are many food sources available.
  • Nectar – We have a Humming Bird feeder.
  • Suet – We offer them Suet eight months out of the year, October to May.
  • Mixed Seed and Cracked Corn – Twice a day, in the morning, and then again in the evening, we feed them a controlled amount by scattering it on the ground, and on tray feeders. It is increased in November through to April, and on days when it is near or below freezing, we feed them three times a day, morning, afternoon, and evening.
  • Household scrapsFruits and veggies are often added to their daily diet.
  • Egg Shells – We offer them egg shells during their nesting season.
  • Our FruitsWe do share with Wildlife. They Love our fruit. We have: an Apple tree; eight Grape vines; Blueberry bushes; Blackberries, a ‘gift’ from the birds; Raspberries; and ‘Volunteer’ Pin Cherry trees, additional gifts from our feathered friends.
Our Mini Nature Preserve

Our Trees, Hedgerows, and Plants provide, Food and Shelter for all Our Wildlife. They provide our family’s share of oxygen. Additionally, they are natural air filters, windbreaks, and sound barriers.

In the Beginning there was…

1. House, front copy

And Now…

Our Plant Inventory

Trees, big

  • White Oak – We maintain three, there were five, we lost two due to storms.
  • Black Locust

Trees, medium

  • Pin Cherry (2)
  • Sassafras (2)
  • Eastern Red Cedar (1)
  • White pine (1)Rose of Sharon, Violet

Trees, smaller

  • Apple (1)
  • Blue Spruce (1)
  • Sweet Gum (1) – kept dwarfed
  • Rose of Sharon trees (5) (in addition to the hedgerow)

Shrubs & Bushes

  • Azalea (2) 1 large, 1 small
  • Blueberry (2)
  • Boxwood, English (2) sempervirens
  • Boxwood, True Dwarf (1) suffruticosa
  • Boxwood, Littleleaf (4) microphylla Koveana
  • Holly, American (1)
  • Holly, Blue Princess (2)
  • Holly, China Boy (1)
  • Hydrangea (3)
  • Rhododendron, Large
  • Winter Honeysuckle
  • and a Chopped up evergreen (the Robin’s Lair)privet-0-12-jun-2018.jpg

Hedgerows

  • Forsythia hedgerow – (6′ W x 40′ L) at least.
  • Privet hedgerow – (3′ W x 30′ L) at least
  • Rose of Sharon hedgerow – (3′ W x 60′ L)

Cover: Blackberry & Raspberry brambles, and an eight Grape vine canopy.

Groundcover: Ground Ivy, Periwinkle, Virginia Creeper, Wild Ginger

Perennial Flower & Foliage Garden: Astilbes; Bleeding Hearts; Cardinal Lilies; Daffodils; Hostas, Blue; Hostas, Variegated; Hyacinths; Jonquils; Kalanchoes; Lesser Celandine, Peony; Snow Drops; Tiger Lilies; Tulips.

Perennial Wilds Garden: Burdock, Catmint, Chickweed, Clover, Cress, Dandelions, Dock, Ground Ivy (Gill-o’er-the ground), Henbit, Lady’s Thumb, Lamb’s Quarters, Mustard, Plantain, Pigweed, Pokeweed, Dead Nettle, Self Heal, Sorrel, Violets, Wild Lettuce, Wild Garlic, Wild Ginger, Winter Cress, Wooly Mint.

A Few of the Ways Wildlife use some of our Plants

White Oak – Food: White Oak provides food for my Grackles, Jays, Nuthatches, Thrushes, Woodpeckers, Rabbits, and Squirrels. More than five hundred butterflies and moths are attracted to this host plant. The larvae of two small moth species of the Bucculatricidae family are known to feed only on the white oak leaves. Shelter: Nesting, Roosting, and Protection for many birds. Our Great Horned Owl usually returns every Fall.

Black Locust – Food: The Flowers are pollinated by Bees and Hummingbirds. Seeds are eaten by Mourning Dove, Eastern Cottontail, and Squirrels. Shelter: Many animals use this tree for cover and cavities. A good home for bird, especially Woodpeckers.

Pin CherryFood: Twenty-five species of songbirds and ground birds eat the fruit. Mammals of all sizes relish it. More than 400 moths and butterfly species eat the leaves.The larvae of a small moth species of the Bucculatricidae family feed on nothing but pin cherry leaves. Shelter: Nesting, Roosting, and Protection.

Sassafras – Food: Sassafras fruits are eaten by many species of birds, including my Phoebes, Gray Catbirds, Northern Flickers, Woodpeckers, Thrushes, Vireos, and Northern Mockingbirds. Groundhogs eat the leaves, and Rabbits eat the bark in winter. Shelter: Nesting, Roosting, and Protection.

Eastern Red Cedar – Food: The Cedar Waxwing is one of the principal users of red cedar berries, but many other birds and mammals, make the fruit an important part of their diet. Shelter: A favorite nesting site of; Chipping sparrows, Robins, Song Sparrows, and Mockingbirds. Juncos, Myrtle Warblers, Sparrows of various kinds, and other birds use the dense protective foliage as roosting cover.

White pine – Food: The seed-filled cones beckon sixteen species of songbirds, and small mammals. Pines are the host plants for more than two hundred butterflies and moths. Shelter: offers excellent year-round shelter.

Apple – Food: Yellow-bellied sapsuckers often feed on the sap of apple trees, leaving a grid of sap wells around the tree, Ruby-throated hummingbirds depend on these sap wells for food, especially when floral nectar is scarce. Insects feed on the sap and in turn become food for birds, including ruby-throats. Many species of bees, butterflies, moths and beneficial insects use the nectar of the apple blossoms in spring. They also feed on fallen rotting apples in fall. Shelter: provides important habitat for many birds, including Bluebirds, Flycatchers, Robins, Ruby-throated Hummingbirds and Orioles. Branches and cavities in apple trees are common nest sites. Many species of mammals and birds use the cavities in winter for shelter or for food caches.

Blue Spruce – Shelter: provides shelter for Siskins, Nuthatches and Crossbills.

Forsythia HedgeShelter: Nesting, Roosting, and Protection for birds & insects.

Privet HedgeFood: can produce thousands of fruits, which are eaten by birds. It’s also used as food by the larvae of some (Lepidoptera) Butterfly and Moth species. Shelter: Nesting, Roosting, and Protection for birds and insects.

Rose of Sharon HedgeFood: Flowering from July to October, it attracts wildlife in droves, Bees, Butterflies, Hummingbirds. Shelter: Roosting, and Protection for many birds and insects.

For the Garden

  • Encourage Birds for Pest Control, by providing Food, Water, Shelter.
  • Use Ladybugs, Diatomaceous earth and Milky spore for pest control.
  • Use recycled Grey water for garden, if you can.
  • Use Rain barrels, if you can.

Repurposing, Recycling, Reusing

  • In 1985, we recycled a bathtub as an in-ground pond.
  • In 2005, we recycled another bathtub into a raised bed herb garden.
  • In 2015, we recycled yet another bathtub into an additional raised bed garden.

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Thanks for stopping by…

I hope you join me on my journey, as I recount many things from my past,            and explore the many other creative possibilities in my future. – OmaEagle

 

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The 1940’s Brown Velvet Suit

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Mother’s Brown Velvet Suit

It is Near 80 Years Old. It’s a very plush velvet, extra soft and cushiony.                 The buttons are white daisy-like flowers with a ‘rhinestone’ in the center.

Mother, wore this suit from age 16 to 24, Pre & Post WWII. (1940 to 1947)            I wore it from age 16 to 27, during and post Vietnam. (1967 to 1979)                        I wore it with brown suede platform shoes.

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Passing It On.

I kept it all these years. In November 2017, It was passed on to my eldest daughter, age 37. She came ‘home’ for three weeks from mid-November through to early December, for an ‘American’ Thanksgiving, and an early Christmas. She has lived in Scotland for 11 years now. She was very close to her Grandmother, ‘Nanny Moon’. She loved The Brown Velvet Suit, but, she is going to make some alterations. She says: ‘The daisy buttons have to go, and maybe the sleeves, to make it a proper vest’. She will use it for work, I can’t wait to see what she does with it. I hope to be able to share some pictures in the future. * Note: My daughter, after reading my post, said she always intended to keep the keep sleeves on this Brown Velvet Suit.

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My Daughter was close to her ‘Nanny Moon’.

Funny thing is, Nanny Moon’s Grandmother, came from Edinburgh, Scotland, the very city where my daughter now works. Nanny Moon always wanted to go visit ‘The Scotland’, where her Grandparents came from. Now at least her Brown Velvet Suit will get to live and work there. 🙂

Mom in velvet suitHelen Mc & Mary Bomboy? Brown velvet copy

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I hope you join me on my journey, as I recount many things from my past,               and explore the many other creative possibilities in my future. – OmaEagle

Recycling Clothes… 5

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Repurpose Receiving Blankets

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They are usually made from a nice heavy flannel, and come in such cute patterns… Disney characters, cartoons, etc. So once you are are done using them to ‘swaddle’ or as light throws, repurpose them by making nice flannel pillowcases.  It is so easy, just fold them in half and sew.

My children Loved their pillowcases they used them forever. In the warm months, they would wick the sweat from your brow, and in the cold months they were warm. My children used them up to and all the way through College. They used them at home, and traveling, at summer camp, they even took them to their dorm rooms. Some were even used by the grandkids. The cartoon style ones were loved the most. Flintstones, Pebbles & Bam Bam, the Jetsons, Yogi Bear & Boo Boo, Pooh Bear, etc. I still have, 3 left home here, 1 Yogi Bear and 2 miscellaneous. I use them occasionally. 🙂

These are the last of the pillowcases made from the receiving blankets. Not the best pictures, but what do you want for being almost 40. Plus they became softer and softer through the years. 😀

recieving blanket. 3receiving blanket. 2recieving.

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What are some of you quick repurposing ideas?

Take Care, Thanks for stopping by.

I hope you join me on my journey, as I recount many things from my past,   and explore the many other creative possibilities in my future. – OmaEagle

Thrift Shoppe Finds

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So Glad We Stopped into The Hospital Thrift Shoppe

We have had a very busy day on an emotional roller coaster ride. We attended a Funeral Mass in the morning. Then in the afternoon, we had to return to the Hospital to follow-up on some business from the week before. On our way driving to and from each place, we would drive past the Hospital Thrift Shoppe, thinking we should stop in there soon.

On our way back home, we had talked about stopping in, but said we said No, it would be too much, because we are spent, we don’t have the energy left. We decided to head straight home, and perhaps take a nap. However, as we were driving by, at the last minute, we said, “What the Heck, just a quick look around.” Boy, am I glad we did…

Here are our finds…

  • 2 Sterno Emergency Preparedness Kits, each kit includes:
    • a Sterno 6″ pillar that burns for up to 60 hours.
    • six Sterno votive candles that burn up to nine hours each.
    • two 7-oz containers of Sterno gel fuel that burns up to 2.5 hours each.
    • and  a Sterno folding stove, so you can prepare food over the flame.
  • A BBQ apron with tools:
    • A nylon apron / that becomes a roll-up storage bag.
    • A BBQ spatula with bottle opener.
    • A BBQ knife
    • A BBQ fork
    • BBQ tongs
    • A BBQ mitt
    • and 2 shakers
  • A glass cake stand – (we will use as a plant stand)
  • A glass serving plate – (we will use as a saucer under plants)
  • 2 small lead crystal candle holders. (for battery taper candles)
  • A small square apothecary jar – (for the bathroom)

Sterno setsThrift glassBBQ tools

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All the above for an unbelievable price of… Two Dollars and Twelve Cents. 😀

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But then he ran back in and bought… a 2 gallon thick glass water dispenser jar without it’s lid for only a quarter. (we might use it for fermenting)  🙂

Glass jug

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Thanks for stopping by…

What do you think of our finds? What were some of your best bargains?

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I hope you join me on my journey, as I recount many things from my past,   and explore the many other creative possibilities in my future. – OmaEagle

 

 

Quilt Stash – Recycling Clothes 4

Quilts

 

I Mean Really Recycling… 

by donating, repurposing or actually composting them…

When we, the adults, outgrew our clothes and textiles, I would donate some of the good usable items to charities that actually help clothe and house people, such as Sal-Val (Salvation Army) or the Breakfast Mission.

Others I would repurpose by making new items for the home.

  • Big items: Patchwork bedspreads, blankets, rag rugs, etc.
  • Small items: Kid clothes, vests, scarves, hats, bags, throws, bath mats, pillows, pillowcases, seat cushions, clothespin bags, washcloths, etc.
  • If an item seemed too worn, I would tear it into cleaning and polishing cloths or gardening covers and ties.
  • I have occasionally composted them.

 

Preparing to Repurpose…

 

For the Quilts:

  • I cut heavy-duty plastic into 12 x 12, 8 x 8, and 6 x 6 square templates.
  • I cut the materials into desired sizes.
  • I separate them by size, materials, and colors into individual ziplock bags.
  • Save special items in their own bags: pockets, logos, zippers, buttons, etc.
  • I store the bags in see-through container.
  • Once I am ready to start a project, I can see all I have on hand at a glance.

 

 

 

My Quilt for Daughter

My quilt for BLD

 

Read the story about our Family Quilts here: Recycling Clothes… 2

 

Take Care, Thanks for stopping by.

I hope you join me on my journey, as I recount many things from my past,       and explore the many other creative possibilities in my future. – OmaEagle

Rag Rugs – Recycling Clothes 3

Rag Rugs

 

I Mean Really Recycling… 

by donating, repurposing or actually composting them…

When we, the adults, outgrew our clothes and textiles, I would donate some of the good usable items to charities that actually help clothe and house people, such as Sal-Val (Salvation Army) or the Breakfast Mission.

Others I would repurpose by making new items for the home.

  • Big items: Patchwork bedspreads, blankets, rag rugs, etc.
  • Small items: Kid clothes, vests, scarves, hats, bags, throws, bath mats, pillows, pillowcases, seat cushions, clothespin bags, washcloths, etc.
  • If an item seemed too worn, I would tear it into cleaning and polishing cloths or gardening covers and ties.
  • I have occasionally composted them.

 

Preparing to Repurpose…

 

For the Rag Rugs:

  • I cut the material into 1 to 1.5 inch strips. (depending on it’s thickness)
  • I begin to wind it into a ball, like yarn
  • I knot the ends together as I go. (I have occasionally sewn the ends.)
  • Store in see-through bin.

 

Rag Rugs in the works…

 

Finished Chair Cushions

mint seat cushionseat cushionf

 

Take Care, Thanks for stopping by.

I hope you join me on my journey, as I recount many things from my past,       and explore the many other creative possibilities in my future. – OmaEagle

Quilts – Recycling Clothes 2

I Mean Really Recycling…

by donating, repurposing or actually composting them…

When we, the adults, outgrew our clothes and textiles, I would donate some of the good usable items to charities that actually help clothe and house people, such as Sal-Val (Salvation Army) or the Breakfast Mission.

Others I would repurpose by making new items for the home.

  • Big items: Patchwork bedspreads, blankets, rag rugs, etc.
  • Small items: Kid clothes, vests, scarves, hats, bags, throws, bath mats, pillows, pillowcases, seat cushions, clothespin bags, washcloths, etc.
  • If an item seemed too worn, I would tear it into cleaning and polishing cloths or gardening covers and ties.
  • I have occasionally composted them.

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The Denim Quilt – Winter 1979-80

I made this denim quilt, while pregnant with my first daughter,                 during the long winter nights of 1979-80.

Denim quilt -winter 1979-80
38 year old denim quilt – made in Winter Nights of 1979-80

It is not as bright and beautiful as it has once been.                                                 It does need some attention and new ‘stuffing’, but boy, does it have a history. First there’s the history behind each and every pair of 1960’s & 70’s jeans in it. Then there is the 38 years of history it has seen…

  • The ‘Huggles’ and Cuddles
  • The Bedtime Stories
  • The ‘Friday Girls Night’ movies
  • and last but not least The Confidential talks

It has secret pockets and zippers, where the girls liked to hide things. 🙂

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22 years later…

I made this for that very same daughter in Winter 2001-02,                         while she was completing her Undergraduate Degree.  😀

The Daughter’s Denim Quilt – Winter 2001-02

My quilt for BLD

I wonder what ‘history’ this Quilt will hold after 38 years.                            I hope them to all be Wonderful.

Read about it here on my Daughter’s Blog…

https://riotflower.wordpress.com/2012/12/13/mama-comfort/

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Take Care, Thanks for stopping by.

I hope you join me on my journey, as I recount many things from my past,       and explore the many other creative possibilities in my future. – OmaEagle