Problem-Solving – Tuesday Rerun/Cleaning Ugg Boots and Suede Shoes

Here’s a remedy for cleaning stained suede. If you’re like me and forget about cleaning seude boots when flip-flop weather arrives this might be the perfect problem-solving post for you today.

Cleaning Salt Stains from Ugg Boots

My Ugg Boots were stained by salt last year. I don’t know why I waited a whole year to clean them off, I suppose it is the classic, out of sight, out of mind syndrome. Thankfully, I do know a good way of cleaning them by applying shaving cream and rubbing with a soft cloth. Below you can see my progress. As I write, the boot I treated is sitting beside a heater vent drying. If there is any residue still left I will repeat the steps.

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Dampen the entire boot so there is no line of demarcation when they dry. Apply the shaving cream and gently rub the soiled area with a soft cleaning cloth. Spread the shaving cream lightly around the entire boot with the cloth. No need for a heavy coat, just a light touch of the shaving cream will keep the color and texture of the boot uniform. Wipe the excess shaving cream away with a clean damp rag.

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The boot on the right was previously treated. You can see the slightest bit of salt stain around arch of the boot, but all in all, unless someone was looking for the problem area, I don’t think it is very noticeable. Give this money saving tip a try. It certainly is a better choice than spending $15.00 or more to have your boots professionally cleaned.

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Photo Challenge – Jamaica


I am soon on my way home from Jamaica…unfortunately, I have found no weather vane to photograph. I also can only do rudimentary editing so I won’t be able to link back to last week’s participants until next Wednesday. Instead of a vane I’m showing a little weather as Hurricane Michael brushing by to the west of Jamaica stirs up the sky a bit. Weather Vane Wednesday will resume next week.

The Photo Challenge: Each Wednesday, I post a photograph of a Weather Vane with a short description of where it can be found and any history connected to it. The main focus of the challenge is the photo of the Weather Vane and the location. The challenge can be Wordless if that is what you choose. If you would like others to see your post leave a link to your blog in the comment box. You can also tag the post #weathervaneweds. If you place a link to my post in your post you will create a pingback that will appear in the comment section. The challenge is open all week for comments and posts. Thanks so much for taking part in my challenge.

Many thanks to Cee, of Cee’s Photography, for including this challenge in her listing of WordPress Challenges. If you love challenges take a look at this page and while you are there check out some of Cee’s terrific posts. Thanks Cee!

Plants & Perspective – Cuttings

In August I took about three dozen cuttings of plants I liked. Oh my! They all took to rooting in water and soil and I soon had them growing under lights in the basement. My success surprised me even though I have rooted cuttings for years. The small plants quickly became another demand of my time.

Where are the plants now? You might cringe and ask ‘why,’ when I tell you they are in the compost heap. I am getting wiser. I am cutting back on things that tie up my time and energy. Do I really need to carry over so many plants? I live in an area with many garden nurseries. My flowering perennials grow larger every year. I don’t really need as many plants as I did in the past.

I’ve decided I must cut away successful endeavors that might kill me. Sounds funny, but those of you with too many projects going on know exactly what I mean. Growing older for me means less really does give me more…and by that I mean TIME. By the way, I also have a glorious compost heap to use next year. Hooray!

Perspective – Playing with God

We walked atop old telephone poles laid flat as parking lot barriers, balancing, waving our arms when we wavered, laughing at each other as we struggled to keep from falling off. We were pretending we were explorers walking a high, narrow bridge between two mountains. He is six, I am sixty. He is my grandson, I am his grandmother.

He had just told me he has nightmares. A scary guy from a video game called Freddy is in his dream. I told him I would pray he has good dreams. We both began talking about our ‘exploring’ game and what fun we were having playing together when he said, “Nanny, I want to play with God.”

My heart soared. Whenever one of my children or grandchildren has acknowledged the personhood of God I know they have a belief in God. My grandson’s remark, that he wanted to play with God was, to me, a precious example of seeking God.

“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” ~ Hebrews 11:6

In the evening, after the day spent with family, I remembered my promise and prayed that Dominic would have a good dream, and that God would play with him in his dream. I am so grateful that God gives me these moments with my beloved grandchildren to reinforce my faith in Him and in the coming Eternal Life we will all share together. All praise to our Glorious Father in Heaven. Amen.

“Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” ~ Matthew 19:14

Projects – October Reruns/A Bit of This and That

I’ve blogged for years and some of the projects I’ve had fun making and sharing get lost in the archives. Here’s a rerun of reruns!

I came across this terrific display of Jack-O-Lanterns a few years ago and it will remain imprinted on my mind as one of the most creative Halloween decorations I’ve ever seen. If I ever have the time, money and help of many hands perhaps I will try to duplicate it.

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I love Jack O’ Lanterns. This big pumpkin devouring a smaller pumpkin was fun to carve and display.

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Several years ago after seeing an idea on how to make Oyster Jack O’ Lantern ornaments on Pinterest, I created several. They have held up for years and today I will be decorating my Norfolk Island Pine tree with these adorable pumpkins.

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You can find full directions here:
Jack O’ Lantern Tree Part I
Jack O Lantern Tree Part II

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These playful glasses were certainly a hit with my grandchildren and trick-or-treaters who came to our door.

My experience and the link to Martha Stewart’s directions for the glasses can be found at Martha’s Halloween Glasses

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Finally, although I didn’t make this snarky sign based on the Wizard of Oz, I love the quote. I only wish I could keep a straight face long enough to use it when someone “bugs” me, but I know I would dissolve into laughter before I could get out two words. Enjoy the season, and remember, “I have flying monkeys, don’t make me use them.” Teeheehee!

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Phlowers – Marigolds

At this time of year, I often walk around my gardens with pencil and tablet to record what I’ve liked, or even more important, make note of what I don’t want to repeat.

To add a bit of Autumn color to my flowered-out front garden, I transplanted a few bunches of marigolds that were growing in an over-crowded area in the backyard. The marigolds have shallow roots and were easy to move. I thought ahead and chose an overcast day with rain in the forecast to dig them out and replant. The cooler temperatures and rainy weather have helped them adapt to the front gardens. I’ve enjoyed their russet burst of color so much, next year I’m planning to plant a patch of this variety in an out of the way place, expressly for transplanting to the front gardens in Autumn.

My garden keeps me young and full of dreams for each season.

“Garden as though you will live forever.” ~ William Kent

Perspective & Plant – Do What You Do and Do It Well

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

In February 2016, I posted about these amazing anthurium hanging baskets I photographed in the Longwood Gardens Conservatory. When I visited the gift shop on my way out, I found single plants for sale at an amazing price and took one home with me. I’ve grown the anthurium in a terracotta pot as a floor plant since then, and although it has done well, it has never wanted to stand upright. After propping it up for years, I decided to let it do what it seemed to be destined to do well and planted it in a hanging basket.

““Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” ~ Dr. Seuss

The anthurium always looked interesting in its floor pot, but as a hanging basket plant it is unique and will never look common. A good lesson for me to follow too: Always be who I am, and not what others think I should be!

““Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual, you have an obligation to be one.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

Photo Challenge – Weather Vane Wednesday/With a Little Help From My Friends

Make new friends,
but keep the old.
One is silver,
the other is gold.”
~ Girl Scout Campfire Song

One of our cousins from Reno, NV, visited last week and brought along a good friend. It was great to meet Jaye; I feel like I have a new friend in her. I had the pleasure of showing them a few of my favorite places, and along with my father, we drove around the Delaware Bay area and had lunch in Fortescue with hundreds of birds for company.

They also visited Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Amish Country while they were here and found this amazing weather vane for me. I’m sharing the photo for this week’s Weather Vane Wednesday. Thanks Myrna and Jaye, I had so much fun on our long drive around the Bay.

Thank you to The 59 Club for their CRABBY weather vane linked to last week’s challenge.

The Photo Challenge: Each Wednesday, I post a photograph of a Weather Vane with a short description of where it can be found and any history connected to it. The main focus of the challenge is the photo of the Weather Vane and the location. The challenge can be Wordless if that is what you choose. If you would like others to see your post leave a link to your blog in the comment box. You can also tag the post #weathervaneweds. If you place a link to my post in your post you will create a pingback that will appear in the comment section. The challenge is open all week for comments and posts. Thanks so much for taking part in my challenge.

Many thanks to Cee, of Cee’s Photography, for including this challenge in her listing of WordPress Challenges. If you love challenges take a look at this page and while you are there check out some of Cee’s terrific posts. Thanks Cee!

Problem-solving – Time to Cut the Snowflakes

It’s time…time to cut the snowflakes. I started even earlier than normal this year; I want to have 100 ready to place on my windowpanes by December 1st. My problem is one of my fingers has become a trigger finger. According to the Mayo clinic…”Trigger finger is a condition in which one of your fingers gets stuck in a bent position. Your finger may bend or straighten with a snap — like a trigger being pulled and released.”

I have found the description to be true of my finger. I can still use my hand, but the finger will become stuck in a bent position without warning. Just like every other physical limitation in life you learn to adapt to what ails you. I’ve found that I need to pace myself where repetitive hand movement is concerned, so instead of cutting several snowflakes each day, I will cut one or two. It’s working for me so far.

Stretching the finger in the opposite direction seems to help me out. For some people the condition can be severe and surgical intervention might be needed.

Exercises for stretching a trigger finger. I have found the finger extensor stretch has worked well for me.

Here’s a Youtube video with easy to follow instructions for cutting paper snowflakes.

Perspective – Bittersweet

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” ~ Albert Camus

Bittersweet vines grow in hedges and up the trunks of trees in our area. There is a native species of the plant, but it is being taken over by an invasive type that was brought into the country as an ornamental.

Bittersweet is also a perfect description of my emotions in October. Sweet are the birthdays and anniversaries of those I love, sweet are the painted faces of children when they ring my doorbell for goodies, sweet are the colorful leaves falling and gathering in heaps beneath my feet; Autumn is filled with so many joyful occasions and sights. Still, I sigh a bit and know the bitter too, for I dislike coats, hats, scarves and gloves, preferring instead to run into the garden on a whim without stopping to armor myself against the elements.

I think I need to have an Autumn motto, and will look to this terrific quote by Nathaniel Hawthorne for my inspiration.

“I cannot endure to waste anything as precious as autumn sunshine by staying in the house.
So I spend almost all the daylight hours in the open air.” ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne

Psalm & Peculiarities – Sky Surprises

“The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.” ~ Psalm 19:1

The sky was full of God’s glory this morning; the moon visible against the brilliant blue of the heavens.

The geese noisily serenaded the morning as they flew toward the local lake.

The birds perched on the pines and added their songs.

An odd sound whooshed into the morning chorus. A hot air balloon moved across the sky, probably on its way to programs at Rowan University, only a mile or two from my home.

The balloon flew close enough to zoom in on the people in the basket.

God bless you on this Sabbath Day.

This post is part of Skywatch Friday.

Programs – Poldark and The Durrells of Corfu

Two of my favorite programs have their season première on Masterpiece Theater Sunday night, September 30th. The ‘Durrells in Corfu’ at 8:00 and ‘Poldark’ following at 9:00.

I’ve also been reading the Corfu Trilogy by Gerald Durrell. The books are full of animals, anecdotes and just plain fun. I’ve finished the first book and am moving on to the second.

The Poldark series of novels are listed here with descriptions and in order: Poldark Novels by Winston Graham.

Pheathers – Delaware Bay Eagle

It’s been a week of beautiful raptors.

We spotted him in the salt marsh as we drove down Fortescue Road toward the Delaware Bay.

The morning was still breaking, the clouds were tinged with pink. We stopped and admired his beauty against the sky.

His wingspan was breathtaking as he flew above the marsh. It was only when he had disappeared from view that we noticed the amazing nest.

This is a perfect spot for raptors, whether they be eagle, osprey or hawk.  There are many species of birds thriving in the salt marshes along the Delaware Bay in New Jersey.

 

Photo Challenge – Weather Vane Wednesday/Come Sail With Me

We went fishing last weekend in Fortescue, New Jersey. I found this sailboat weathervane near one of the beaches.

Right around the corner I found another sailboat weather vane, a little worse for wear, the front sail had blown away in the winds off of the bay.

I had several good surprises on our fishing adventure. My husband had called ahead to Higbee’s Bait and Tackle and asked them to hold onto a surf fishing rod I had once admired there. The rod is an early birthday present.

It’s almost twice my size and WONDERFUL! I caught three fish with it. They were small, but one day I hope to post a BIG fish story here. I will share the second surprise later in the week…I’ll give you a hint, it has wings!

Thanks to those who took part in last week’s #Weathervaneweds Challenge:

‘This Made Me Smile Today’ for the Buffalo Weather Vane.

Also to ‘The 59 Club’ for Flight Training

I also have The 59 Club’s permission to include their Weather Vane Video here:

Thanks so much to everyone who takes part in the Weather Vane Wednesday Challenge.