my daily apple ~

Every day I eat an apple.
Why?  Because I can :)

I've also started feeding my feathered and furry friends an apple a day too ~ just to keep them happy.  I NEVER toss an apple core into the garbage ... it just attracts those nasty fruit flies.  Instead it's become my ritual to do this:

I cut the apple from the core ~ then dice up the core and put it out on the bird feeder.  The birds LOVE it!  The reason for dicing it and not just putting the whole core out there is so it can go around to more than just one bird ... like the bluejay.  They will fly in and snag the apple from the feeder and none of the other birds get a taste.

We call this little nuthatcher the affectionate name  ~  "AsUp" ... because you always see it like this ~

Please don't toss your apple core or any other fruit scraps in the garbage.  Put them outside somewhere ~ your furry and feathered friends will appreciate your kindness.  Even if you live in the city and think that you don't have a place to put it  ... look around ... you do.  Even if it's tossing it beside a wall somewhere ... setting it on a window sill ... throw it in a ditch ... the mice will love you, the birds will love you ... the rabbits and squirrels ... they all will love you ... they need their vitamin C too :)  I don't consider this littering at all ... it's Up Scale Recyling ... re-purposing a reusable product. You used what you could off of it ... now it's time to share the remainder.  Even if the critters don't eat it and it rots down ... it's replenishing the soil with nutrients.  Who knows ... you might even be planting a future apple tree???!!!???!!!

~ 'lil Bucky' snacking on an apple:

... the yearling ... coming to get his:

Until next time ...
So it goes in my neck of the woods.


the cook needs to pay attention ~

Recipes ~ gotta love 'em!  I just love flipping through cookbooks and cooking websites and watching food shows on tv checking out new recipes.  I get tons of info and ideas; but rarely do I actually follow a recipe to the T.  I'm always discombobulating it and rearranging this and adjusting that until I've come up with something totally unique and on it's own, a completely new recipe. 

Sometimes this works ... and sometimes not :(

Take my cornish game hens that I deep fried last night ~
The recipe said EXACTLY 15 minutes in the fryer ... not a minute less, not a minute more.

It was crispy skinned, 
the meat was so tender and juicy. 
Delicious with a capital D.

In goes the second hen ...

I'm setting the table ... 
mashing potatoes and making a gravy.  
I'm watching the clock.

I think I'll grab my camera and maybe post about this tomorrow.  Okay, keep an eye on the clock I have 10 more minutes of frying time.  I'm outside on my deck using my turkey fryer to make these birds.  I go into the house to finish up setting the table.  I tell Dear Hubby, let's dig in and start eating.  We'll share the first bird; because I don't intend on eating a whole cornish hen myself and he doesn't need it either.  Dear Hubby asks why I'm cooking the second bird in the first place.  I proceed to tell him that I plan on it for lunch tomorrow.  We'll be out in the woods making firewood, and it'll be a quick meal for lunch time. 

Dang... I look outside and the fryer seems to be smoking.  I look at the clock ... Double Dang ... it's now been 17 minutes.  Two whole minutes over the EXACTLY 15 minute time period.  Oh what can 2 minutes extra really do?

It was not only burnt ... it was absolutely disgusting.  
The burn flavor was all the way through the meat. 
It really was inedible.  
Yuck with a capital Y.

So what's for lunch today???

Until next time ...
So it goes in my neck of the woods.


touching ~

Sometimes I see a movie or hear a song and it really touches me  Last night I watched My Own Love Song.  Talk about a double whammy ~ the movie AND the music really got me.  If you haven't seen it yet ... you might want to consider it and see for yourself.

I remember my Dad and Uncle Merlin singing this song one night around the campfire. They were both veterans of WWII.  Those two brothers liked to joke around with the best of them; but sometimes they would really throw you for a loop ... such as the night they sang this song with as much love and compassion for this country as imaginable as Renee sang it in the movie ~ and hearing it again REALLY overwhelmed my emotions.

Until next time ...
So it goes in my neck of the woods.


stinky dog ~

What I'm about to tell you is a true story ~ I am going to change the names to protect the innocent and also try to tell it without all the cuss words that were used.

My son is friends with this guy who has hunting dogs, I believe they are German Shorthairs.   I'll refer to him as Mr. Guy.  Well, Mr. Guy hires out his services as a guide for hunting partridge aka. ruffed grouse with his dogs.  One of his best hunting hounds is Bud (name change to protect his innocence).

Mr. Guy has clients that he needs to pick up at the motel for a morning hunt.  He calls to Bud to load up.  Now, Mr. Guy and Bud had been out hunting all week with another client and all was well.  They would take Mr. Guys truck with the other client because it was just the three of them.  But this time there would be an extra person along so Mr. Guy would be driving Mrs. Wife's van (which she only uses on dump day or for flea markets and rummage sales, otherwise she drives her car) ... which was how he did it when he had more than one client.

Mr. Guy is in the house with Bud, talking with him about having to pick up the new clients, making last minute preps for the day, packing a brown bag lunch, etc... and he lets Bud out to go to the bathroom before heading down the road.

Mr. Guy is ready to go.  He heads out to the van, gives Bud a call to load up.  He opens the van's side door, Bud jumps in.  Mr. Guy heads around to the drivers side and gets into the vehicle.  Then he gets a whiff of air ~ coming from the back seat.  'Dagnabit-diggity Dog! Bud what did you do?  Did you go and roll in something in that little time I let you out of the house until we got into the van?  You know we got clients riding with us today.' (he really didn't say dagnabit-diggity dog; but you get my drift)

Mr. Guy then proceeds to take Bud out of the van and takes him over to the garden hose for a quick spray down.  He's satisfied that his dog is smelling better. He then runs into the house for something  and comes back out to the van and loads Bud up once more.  Again, the same scenario happens.  He gets in on his side of the van ~ a whiff of foul air assaults him.  More cussing at poor Bud.  Mr. Guy couldn't believe that Bud would go and roll in something again in that short of time span.  Once more, a trip over to the garden hose, a quick wash, and a quick trip to town to pick up his clients.

When the clients get in the van, Mr. Guy is very apologetic ... explaining that he just doesn't know what Bud got into or if he ate something he shouldn't have ... but he stinks.
All day long, whenever Mr. Guy puts Bud in the van he can smell that hound.  He doesn't say anything to draw attention to it and just hopes that his clients aren't as offended by it as he is.

When he gets home, he unloads Bud and takes him straight over to the garden hose again and gives him another spray down.  He's not coming in the house smelling like he does.

The next morning, again the same scenario.  Mr. Guy once again has the same clients that he needs to take out hunting.  He lets Bud out of the house a few minutes before he's ready to go so he can do his morning duty .. take his poo :)

Mr. Guy loads up Bud and while doing so is again assaulted with a foul smell.  "Cuss word, cuss word, cuss word, something you stinking dog, cuss word, cuss word, you know we have clients waiting on us, cuss words" as he's dragging Bud over to the garden hose.  Bud is not happy with Mr. Guy either.  He has never growled at his master; but this morning he is about as put off with this whole garden hose spray down as Mr. Guy is.  It's only 43 degrees out.  Getting sprayed off with cold water is not Bud's idea of a nice bath!

Bud gets loaded into the van again.  Mr. Guy can still smell him.  What the "cuss words, cuss words," is wrong with you dog.  I know you didn't roll in anything this time because I loaded you straight up from the cold water bath.  It must be something you ate.  Do I need to put you on some new dog food?  "Cuss word, cuss word, " oh you stink!!

He picks up the clients, apologies are once again given.  Mr. Guy just doesn't know what to do.

Later that afternoon, when he gets home he is telling Mrs. Wife about Bud and how he just reeks.  He tells her about the spray downs and how Bud actually growled at him.  He's really concerned. Does he need to take Bud to the vet?

Mrs. Wife starts laughing.  She said, "You owe Bud a BIG apology! Did you take that bag of dirty diapers to the dump like I asked you last week that are sitting in the back of the van?"

Until next time ...
So it goes in my neck of the woods.


scrappin' and wondering ~

Before I post some of my new scrap pages from TajMELhal ~ I'd like to draw attention to the New Coin Boycott on my sidebar.  You guessed it ~ In God We Trust is missing !!! If someone gives you this coin for change ~ please ask for a paper dollar bill instead.  We can make a difference by refusing to use it.

Now on to some scrap pages I put together:

These are just a few of the deer that we see in our woods.  The scrap pages are of the does and fawns ~ and a few turkeys. There aren't any bucks around ... yet.

page 1 of 2: Our Beautiful World

page 2 of Our Beautiful World:

Just thought I'd share :)

And now ... something to think about????

When we are in the grocery store and someone rams our ankle with a shopping cart then apologizes for doing so, why do we say, "It's all right."

Well, it isn't all right ~ so why don't we say, "That hurt, you stupid idiot?"

I wouldn't really say that out loud; but it is what I'd be thinking.  


The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four persons is suffering from some sort of mental illness. Think of your three best friends, if they're okay, then it's you.

I just thought I'd let you know.

I do wonder sometimes about the strangest things :)

 American mothers feed their babies with tiny little spoons and forks so I wondered what do Chinese mothers use? Toothpicks?

Until next time ...
So it goes in my neck of the woods.


inner peace ~

Some doctor on TV this morning said the way to achieve inner peace is to finish all the things you have started. 
So I looked around my house to find the things I'd started and hadn't finished. I have managed to finish off a bottle of Merlot, a bottle of Chardonnay, a bodle of Brandy, a butle of wum, a pockage of Prungles, tha mainder of bot Prozic and Valiuminun scriptins, the res of the chesescke an a box a chocletz. 
Yu haf no idr how bludy fablus I feel rite now. Plaese sned dhis orn to dem yu fee ar in ned ov iennr pisss. An telum,u blody luvum.!!
Until next time ...
So it goes in my neck of the woods.

busy bees ~

I'm busy as a bee right now ~ and promise to get back to blogging as soon as possible.  In the meantime ... I'm taking a break for a few days.  Thank you to all who follow and read my little snippets of what's going on in my world ~ Up North With Mel.  LOVE TO ALL!!! Miss Me!

Before I go ... just thought I'd share another cute little pic from TajMELhal ~

That's just how I feel today, correction - these last couple weeks ... a little behind on things :) and I need to take a little time off to catch up.

Until next time ...
So it goes in my neck of the woods.


brandy ~

It's been 2 months since she passed from this earthly home 
and has found her way to doggy heaven
... and I just couldn't fight the tears back to make this post until now.

She was a good dog.  
She was my constant companion for almost 14 years.

Many hours had been spent together in conversation ...
Me doing the talking ~ and she listening and dwelling on my every word 
as if she knew what I was rambling on about.

She gave me comfort.

Our family was blessed to have such a loyal and loving pet.

It's really hard for me to take my walks without her.

She loved blazing the trail and checking things out before me ...

Napping in the sunshine ~

~ and running in new fallen snow ...

  She was a good dog.

Until next time ...
So it goes in my neck of the woods.


good things~

So do you know what this is?  It's kind of scary looking if you ask me.  It has a clamp, a big screw thingy with a pointy end, a cutting blade and springs on it and a crank handle that turns the shaft with the big screw thingy-mi-jig.

It's one of my favorite little kitchen gadgets ~ an apple peeler, corer, slicer - all in one.  It's a pretty handy kitchen gadget to own when you have a big bag of apples waiting on you.

Now isn't that just the slickest thing you ever did see?  Yeppers, as Martha would say, "It's a good thing."

Another good thing ~ as far as I'm concerned is this gorgeous weather that we're having.  It's 60 degrees out this afternoon, the sky is clear, the air smells like fall.  I LOVE IT!

Let's take a walk around the place ...

I only had eight apples on this tree, this year ~ last year it was so loaded we had to put support boards under it's branches so they wouldn't break ~ they're a later apple that always sweetens up after being exposed to a good frost.  As long as they are holding fast ~ I don't plan on picking them until they are good and ready.  I wish I could remember what the name of this apple tree is ... they are the best BEST pie and jam apple I've ever come across.  I also hope the deer don't get them before me.

Look what's in my crab apple tree ~ a nice little hornet's nest ... which I discovered the last time I mowed the lawn.  It's right at head level.

I'm fascinated by hornets nest ~ the layers and layer of paper like sheets that make them up ... and it always amazes me how fast the hornets can construct a nest.  Notice on the upper right hand side of the nest ... the hornets built it right around an apple. They can  have those apples, they're so tart and sour tasting the deer don't even like them.

The beautiful colors of fall are all around us ...

 ~ * ~
the scent of woodsy moss and mushrooms is in the air 

little mushrooms tucked under the leaves ...

upon closer inspection ...
... yup, call me weird; but this is the kind of thing that fascinates me and I could walk around and discover all day long ...

You may just see a fern frond ~ but I see how the frost has already hit it and it's dying off for the season ~ evident by the discoloration in the leaves ...

Blue skies and a spruce tree ~ I also see the top of another smaller spruce tree hung up in the top of a maple tree.

The circle of life ~ the maple seed which will get it's nourishment from the fallen leaves and decaying wood ... young balsam tree seedlings growing on the rotten moss covered log ~

Yes, these are all good things.


Thanks for spending some time enjoying the woods and my back yard with me.  Have a fantastic day!

Until next time ...
So it goes in my neck of the woods.