Archive for July, 2009

Summer Months/Brush Pile up

Posted in Uncategorized on July 29, 2009 by pjack214

During the summer months with tree trimming,
storms and just trying to get your yard looking
good you can rack up some tree and bush brush
(say that one 5 times in a row real fast!!).

Lately I have noticed all along my neighborhood
roads there is brush stacked every where, including
at the end of my drive. Last weekend I cut back a
tree at the back of my yard that was bad need of a
trim. It was the type of tree that you see growing
along the river or lakes, I think it is called a river
birch. There were several of them along the creek
in my yard when I moved there 16 years ago and I
have lost most if not all but this one, and it is
hanging in there. It developed a bad lean, right
over into my back yard, a low lean, touching the
ground. I thought if I got back there with my
cutters and took off the smaller branches that
would help take off some weight and it would
pop back up. I did not realize just how many smaller
branches that would require. A lot! I removed them
and the main larger base did rise up a bit but not
enough, it is going to require a saw to cut it down.

Anyway, with all the cutting and the 15 or more trips
it took for me to haul them from the back yard,
around the shed, down the drive to the front of the
yard, between my and my neighbor’s drive, I ended
up with a large pile of brush. Plus, I was adding to a
stack that my neighbor had already put there. Him
and I share this spot, it’s in front of the part of the
creek that starts its travel under the road.

I was hoping that Metro would be making its trip
through the neighborhood to pick this mess up soon.
After I traveled through my Mom’s neighborhood this
morning (after taking my baby to Granny’s Doggie
Day Care) on my way to work and counting (for fun)
70 piles of brush in a 2.9 mile spread, I checked the
website for a pick up date. Both Mom and I live in
the same #3 area. Our pick up date was suppose to
be last week on the 22nd. Since I know they had not
gotten my area then, and it was for sure they had not
gotten Mom’s, maybe they are working their way
over that way.

I know with the economy being the way it is, things
have been cut. It is in areas like this that you notice
at times where some of those cuts have been made.
Funny, need them to pick this stuff up cause from
what I can remember you need a permit to burn
this stuff or you can be fined. Okay, Saturday
morning, you are out working, where you going to
run to get that permit? Personally, I hate burning
stuff, my luck, I will set something else on fire…
probably my own home!

I do know that there was a pick up in my area around
February after I had tree’s trimmed (thanks to the
pesky squirrels moving into the attic). We have this
one that was scheduled for last week and then
another one for December 1st. I guess all in all,
three times a year is not bad, but during the summer
months, brush pick up should really be more often
with all the yard work that is done.

Maybe the economy is on the up swing and things
are changing slowly.

Thanks for stopping in,


The Wreck

Posted in Uncategorized on July 27, 2009 by pjack214

Three years ago this past February I had an accident
in my car. It’s a funny story in a way if a car accident
can be funny.

I worked with two photographers for the State of
Tennessee at the time. Our director and a good
friend of mine had lost her husband to cancer.
The three of us were heading out after work to
go to the funeral home for visitation that evening.
We were taking our own cars since we all lived in
different areas and that way we could all head to
the house afterwards.

Jed decided to hit the interstate, where Phil and I
decided to head down a four lane highway. I was
following behind Phil. We had just came out from
stopping at a red light, had gotten our speed up to
about 15 or 20 miles per hour when a woman in
front of Phil hit her brakes. Phil in turn put his brakes
on, I at that time had glanced in my rear view mirror.
As I looked back at Phil’s car, I hit my brakes, pulled
to the left to try to avoid hitting him, with no such
luck. Yikes…yes, I ran up the rear of his car. I was
amazed at the amount of damage at such a low
rate of speed.

I had a Saturn, he has a Pacifica. His car sits up
high in the rear, where mine sat down low in the
front. That really does not make for a good combo.
I did a little of three thousand dollars worth of damage
to his car and I totaled mine. Oh, I hear you asking
about the woman in front of Phil, the one that started
all this, as Phil hit his brakes, she took her foot off hers
and applied the gas. I am sure she was not even aware
of the accident.

The fun does not stop here. Phil, bless his heart (yes
Phil, I know you love that saying), he gets out of his
car, runs back to check on me, and I might add, without
looking back to check on his car. His concern was that
I was okay. While I am at it, let me throw in here that
Phil is one of those good guys you hear tell about, he
has been a really good friend to have around.

Anyway, he runs back to check on me. We pull the
cars off the road into a parking lot and Phil calls
the police. I use his phone to call my Mom and a
wrecker service. If you are asking why I used his
phone then that will prove to me that you did not
read my post on July 25, about cell phones! Anyway,
calls made, we waited. I kept making comments
about his car and Phil kept telling me to stop worrying
about it, it was an accident and it would be okay,
accidents happen. If he was upset with me, he
never showed it.

While we waited, Phil asked me what I was going
to do for a car. I told him that I figured that would
not be a problem, my brothers had plenty of cars
so I felt like they would let me borrow one. He said,
we can have this one fixed, I can drive my mustang
and you can drive this one. I looked at him, eyes
watering a bit and said something like, “Phil honey,
I just wrecked your car and you are offering to let
me drive it after it is fixed until I get one”? Even
with the sweetness of it all he would look at me
and smile, telling me that I knew this one was
not going to die in the office anytime soon!

Okay, all said and done, Police arrives, not a very
friendly one at that and dummy me had locked
the car with my purse in it. But he was able to
look me up on the computer. He wanted to know
if Phil wanted to have him write me a ticket for
hitting him.

When I get nervous, I joke around even more then
usual, so of course I was joking around a lot. When
the cop looked at Phil and I and asked did we know
each other and I said that I tell Phil what to do
everyday the cop wanted to know if I was his boss.
When I replied “No, better then that, I am his
secretary”, I don’t think the cop was any to happy!
Oh well.

With all this said and done, Phil’s car was okay to
drive, mine was not. Had to have mine hauled to
the wrecker service, family friends. Later to learn
that I had cracked the housing that the motor sat
in. My car was a goner.

I drove one or the other of my youngest brother’s
cars. Either the old AMC Spirit (my Dad’s old car),
Mark’s BMW, or his truck) for a couple of weeks
until I found a car I wanted. Thanks bud.

Although the reason I was following Phil was not a
good one, the accident was not good, the fact that I
ran into the guy I worked with was kind of funny.
We seem to find humor in the oddest of things at
times. As funny as that could have gotten, it really
did not live long in the office. Phil was not one to
let it ride. But it is good for a laugh here and there
when it is brought up between us.

It was also the reason I finally broke down and got
a cell phone. Phil reminded me at the time of the
accident when I had to use his that I needed one,
that if I had hit anyone else I would have had to
walk to find a phone. He was right….yes Phil, I
said it, you were RIGHT!

Thanks for stopping in,

The Planter Project

Posted in Uncategorized on July 26, 2009 by pjack214

Here is an easy, simple but really cute outside project that is
not costly at all.
It takes about 15 to 20 minutes to make.

I started with a piece of rebar. The size you will need will
depend on how tall you will want your project to be. I did
not want mine to be that high so I went with a
shorter piece. Cost was $4.87.

Next I purchased 5- 6 inch clay pots with a hole in the
bottom center. Cost $1.27 each.

You will need rocks and dirt. These I had on had. My plants
cost me about $6.00.

Hammer the rebar into the ground just a bit making sure it is
secure. Then you will take a pot and slide it over the rebar placing
it on the ground. I then put in a layer of rock for drainage since
this will be sitting on the ground. Then I filled almost to the
top with dirt.
Rebar with first pot/rock and dirt.

Next, I slide another pot over the rebar at an angle, not
straight up and down. This will put the rebar touching
the rim of the pot. Again, a small layer of rock, then dirt.
I then planted some plants in the first pot in the space that
was left showing that the second pot was not
resting on. I also planted plants to the side of the second
pot, keeping in mind that the next pot would sit on the other
side rim of it.

see how the rebar touches the rim

You will continue to slide pots onto the rebar at an alternating
angle until you reach the top.

This is what the finished project should look like.
I waited a bit to late in the summer to find the right kind of
plants to put in here but next spring I will plant some
that will cascade over the side.

Enjoy making one of these for your garden.

Cell Phone Etiquette

Posted in Uncategorized on July 25, 2009 by pjack214

Okay folks here’s the deal, common sense and common
courtesy! That should pretty much say it all but as
we all know, it don’t.

First let me say, I was probably one of the very last
people in my age group to jump on the age of techno
with a computer in the home and a cell phone in the
pocket. I got my computer maybe five years ago and
my cell just three years ago.

The computer was not that hard for me to get the
hang of since I worked on one at home but the
phone…who would have ever thought something
that little would be so hard for me to get. I always
said I would never have one, I made fun of people
who talked while driving, thinking that it should be
able to wait till they got home. Then I had wreck,
it just so happened that I hit the guy I worked with
(that is another story), so I was able to use his phone
but I realized I needed one. I spent a lot of time to
and from, here and there, alone in the car and usually
at night, I knew it would be best to have a phone.
Funny thing is, I love change, but I still have the
same phone I got three years ago!

Anyway, I am one of those people that talk in
the car and no it can’t wait till I get home cause
by then so many more thoughts have entered
and left my mind that I will have forgotten. I do
my best thinking while driving, so when I think,
I have to make that call then to relay something
to someone that I thought of.

But where do you cut it off? Me, I try to think
about those around me. Of course it is a given
that they get cut off in the movies or a show. I
try to take it a step further, if I enter a restaurant
to eat, I cut mine off, or at least on silent (at least
I try to remember to do this). To me there is
nothing more disturbing then eating a meal, talking
with family or friends and someone’s phone rings.
It is usually loud, or a catchy tune, a song, then you
have someone with a loud voice answer it. Personally,
I don’t care to hear that one sided conversation, and
for some reason most people feel the need to talk
louder into a cell phone.

Next, a restroom? Come on, that is just too far. The
other day I was coming out of the restroom at work
only to be almost mowed down by a young girl running
in texting (that is another part I will get into). Then
today, I was going into the stall (yes, I know you wanted
that visual) and here was yet another young woman
on her cell phone, as she talked she paced up and down
in front of the stalls (including the one I was in) talking
in an unknown (at least to me) language. LOUDLY, I
might add. Take it out of the bathroom!

Texting, dangerous if driving. Against the law in
Tennessee if driving, this law just past. Personally,
I don’t do it. I am at a computer all day, if I wish to
send someone a typed message, I will send an email,
if I wish to call someone, I will use the phone! Simple.
I have sent a few, received some, but on a whole, I
don’t do it.

In public, step away from the group, or others to take
your call. Excuse yourself and go to an area that you
can speak where the general public is not subject to
your one side conversation…..this goes esp. to you
teen girls! Oh my gosh…..I don’t care! I understand you
are young, once I was too, but stop with the silliness
on the cell phones in public. Actually most of the times
I can walk past all this and ignore but since I was bring
up phone etiquette I thought I would throw this in there.

These statements are my opinion and my opinion
only…take it for what it is, you may or may not
agree. Just think, use common sense, and with
that said, that will leave a lot of people out of the

If you key Cell Phone Etiquette into the computer
the internet will hit upon some of this stuff I mentioned
and it has other points also. Check it out.


To The Market for My Watermelon!

Posted in Uncategorized on July 24, 2009 by pjack214

Last Saturday I went to the Franklin Tn., Farmers
Market that sets up behind the Factory Mall on
Saturdays. I had never been before, but my
friend Theresa wanted to go and I decided
that I would like to ride along.

When I say ride along, that is about the extent
of it. I don’t cook much so buying up a bunch
of stuff is not something I do since it usually
goes to rot before I get it used or put up in the
freezer. Now, let me just say, I use to cook every
night when I had kids that lived at home. My
kids got a cooked breakfast almost daily, except
maybe once a week where they had cereal. They
got dinner cooked at home every night except
maybe once a week where we would have burgers
or something. Usually we would do a place where
it was 5 burgers for $5 or something like that.
When you are raising two kids as a single Mom
and money is tight you just don’t have the eat
out money all the time.

My daughter moved out when she was 18 and
my son when he was 12…yes, 12. He moved in
with his Dad. My home was empty for the first
time and I got into the bad habit of not cooking
or stopping here and there and picking up things
to eat. My daughter and my grandson moved back
with me in Oct. 2001. I told my daughter that I did
not cook much but she knew where the kitchen was.
About a week later she came to me and said “Mom,
you said you did not cook much, you did not tell me
that you did not cook at all!”

Okay, I really said all that just because I got off the
subject of the market!! LOL….

Anyway, at the market I did pick me up some home
grown fresh tomato’s, garlic (which keeps awhile in
the frig. and it will be there when I need it…on the
rare occasion), and I got a watermelon.

I have always loved watermelon in the summertime.
I got that from my Dad. Him and I were the only
one’s in the house that liked it. Course he like salt
on his, not me, I like it fresh with nothing on it.
I have not had a good melon in several years.
Partly because of the weather I think, first a
drought, then lots of rain this spring, and alas,
I am not really that good at picking out melons.

But at the Franklin Market the other day I went
the Delvin Farms booth to get my melon. Most,
if not everything they grow is organic. I have
heard nothing but the best ever said about them,
so this is where I decided to try. Next came the
part of picking out the RIGHT one…..and
thumping them don’t tell me a thing cause
I am not so sure what I am suppose to listen
to. I asked a man that was there working and
he replied that I could not go wrong with any
of them and he ran off to help a customer with
a purchase. A very nice woman customer, looking
to purchase a watermelon herself, thumped a
couple, pointed to one and said, that would be a
good one for you. I thanked her, and so wished I
could take her with me next time I go!

I purchased my melon, $6. Waited till Tuesday to
cut it then wondered why I waited so long. It was
the reddest, juiciest, sweetest melon I have had in
years…and I mean years. I had the best taste. It
was of course a seedless which makes the experience
so much better. I have literally lived on that
melon since I cut it. That was my dinner that night,
my breakfast the next three mornings (counting today),
I have had it for lunches and for snacks and it is all
gone now! YES, I pigged out on that melon and so
wished I had more for my lunch today. I can live
on it alone, nothing else.

When eating some yesterday, my dog kept begging
…..I don’t normally feed him while he begs but I
thought…you asked for it, thinking he would not
eat it. I was so wrong, apparently he liked it as
much as I did. Darn, now I have to share my
watermelon with a dog!

Okay, I can’t make that trip to the Franklin
Market again this weekend, but downtown
Nashville is a lot closer! I have checked, since
I have only 10 minutes away from the downtown
market, I thought about going at lunch today,
but the Delvin Farm’s bunch will not be there
until tomorrow….guess that will be my early
morning rise and shine trip! I will be off to the
market, me and my little piggies!

Think I will pick up two this time, since I have
to share with the dog!

Thanks for stopping in,

My New Looking House – Painted

Posted in Uncategorized on July 22, 2009 by pjack214

I bought my home 16 years ago the first of
this month. The year after I moved in it
was painted on the outside. The original
color when I moved in was a country, gray
blue color. I went back with that same color
when it was painted the first time, not a lot
of impact when you do that, but change the
color from a dark color to a brighter, lighter
color….you have impact.

~ Before ~
Fifteen years have gone by and the house was
yelling out to me ( loudly) that it needed a fresh coat of
paint again. My house is a wood siding home and with
that said, there were some pieces of wood that
needed replacing also. Then there was also damage
done by the freak’n squirrels that ate a hole in the
eve of the house and moved into the attic back in
the winter. It cost me a small fortune to rid myself,
my attic and my peace of mind of them pesky,
freak’n squirrels!

Anyway, I had Dave (painter, and hubby of the
woman that cuts my hair) come out and give me
an estimate. Dave has been painting for 27 years,
he is a professional licensed painter and very picky
at what he turns out and leaves his customers with.
Excellent job…well done.

Here is what I got for my monies worth: Boards
replaced, repairs done, caulking around all windows
and seams where boards meet, pressure wash the
house, but hey, let’s throw in pressure washing of
the deck and the front porch! While doing the pressure
washing, take it to the inside of the gutters and clean
them out. Thanks to things the squirrels left behind
I had “things” growing in my gutters, a first for me
since moving there. Now with the gutters done, let’s
tack the sagging gutter, (the one that had something
growing in it) back up and while at it, check the rest
to make sure they are up and secure. Trim the holly
tree away from the porch some to paint (but since it
hangs so close to the ground, trim that a bit too so it
looks better), trim back the crape myrtle bush that is
on the other side of the deck and is so big that it is
touching the house. When I say trim, I don’t mean,
whack it off, I mean, a nicely done, clean cut trim.
My shutters, front and back house lights and house
numbers were removed, not painted around. These
were replaced after the house was finished.

Then came the paint, or tinted primer. I was hoping
to get a price for paint with primer already added to
it to avoid painting twice but with the type of stuff
my home is made of (junk, crap, cheap stuff)…that
was not doable. The paint rep that Dave works with
told him priming and then painting was the best
way to go. My home is made of what I call pressed
partial board put together with a wax. After awhile
that wax bleeds through and leaves dark spots.
Hopefully with priming that will not happen again.

Okay, primer is on. Dave and his team had taped
kraft paper up over the windows and doors because
they spray the primer and paint on. He explained
this to me by saying that it gives a more even coat
and a thicker coat, hence lasting longer. Plus,
instead of going with a flat paint, I went with a
light satin, to last a bit longer.

~work in progress~

Next, the final coat for my home. The Prairie Dust
color I picked out. Then the white for the trim,
around my porch, the under hangs (eve’s), and
under the roof of the porch. My white shutters
that I had put up a year ago were replaced. My
house numbers that were once a brass color
were painted black (an extra Dave threw in for
he knew it would look so much better) and the
rail on the porch painted black again (another
extra). My lights were put back up. Dave looked
over the house to make sure nothing was missed
…all was well and the house looked so new.
Wow, a different looking home, and done with
paint…and lets not forget the hard work of Dave
and his guys. Great job guys. Michael, his nephew
did an awesome job with the saw and his repairs,
so much so that I have him getting me and
estimate for repairing my deck!

I am hoping that I did not leave any details of
the work that was done out. They were great,
professional and it is a given that they pay
attention to details, but the best is, they take
pride in their work. Thanks guys.

~Finished Project ~

~ Back ~

Oh yeah….the shed matches too!!

Thanks for stopping in,

Trash to Treasure Tuesday

Posted in Uncategorized on July 21, 2009 by pjack214

Hello all,

It’s my third Trash to Treasure’s Tuesday!

Today I am not showing anything that I have
done or anything that I have purchased as a
treasure from Goodwill, a thrift store or yard
sale. I am showing something that my brother

Talent seems to run in my family. I paint, do
crafts, jewelry, photography…etc. My oldest
brother is talented with his hands and his
ideas. He is right now finishing up the remodeling
of one of his homes. Him and my nephew Chase
have gone in and gutted this ranch type home and
redid it all. They have done everything from taking
down walls, to putting in all new bathrooms and
building cabinets. He is great with photography and
one fantastic businessman.

My younger brother, Mark, is
talented with his hands also. He is great with wood
and scrap metal and metal odds and ends. He built
my Mom’s sewing center, end tables and coffee table
many years ago out of solid oak. He replaced her
kitchen cabinets from pine to oak also. He does
awesome work. Right now, he also has part of his
house gutted and his redoing parts of it. There is not
anything that he does half way, and there is not anything
he can’t do…and do well.

Mark believes in recycling all that you can to make
this world a better place to live in and for our children
and grandchildren. In part of his recycling he will take
left over metal or spare parts and make things with

About 9 years ago when I first learned that I could
paint, for my birthday he made me the neatest
birthday gift, all from scrape stuff he had laying
around….metal, springs and screws. So awesome!
It is a metal figure sitting at an easel painting. He
took it a step further and cut a picture from a
magazine that fit right onto the easel to look like
that was what was being painted. Such a great idea.
This is displayed proudly in my home for all to see.

Another year for my birthday Mark made me
another piece. It was a metal dragonfly. It is put
together with a long nail (not sure the correct
name), metal cut wings and smaller nails for the
legs. He does the greatest work.

He has also made other items for other members

in the family. I think my Mom has a spider and a
dog. He has also made her a big spring bodied
weenie dog! I will have to get shots of those later
for another Trash to Treasure Tuesday!

Thanks for stopping in to enjoy these fine pieces of ART.