Blogs I follow and hop


Mountain Mama – My newest blogging friend.  Lots of decorating, cooking, and musing!

Country Girl, Life On The Farm – Farm life in the country of Virginia.  A must read!

The Self Sufficient HomeAcre – Raising chickens, canning, and general homesteading.

Off Grid Works – Really good ideas about living of-grid.

Willow Creek Farm – High Altitude Homesteading

Cherry Homestead – Self sustainability, self-integrity, and a simpler way of living.

Eight Acres – A view of homesteading down under.

My DIY – A blogger from Germany who repurposes and rebuilds.

Taylor Made Ranch – Lots of good recipes, good advice, clever ideas.


BLOGS THAT I HOP:  (Always a work in progress!!!)

Monday:   Thank Goodness It’s MondayGrand Social; Mix It Up Monday; Create, Link, Inspire;  Amaze Me Monday,  Over The Moon

Tuesday:   Show & Share Tuesday; The Gathering Spot; Brag About ItTuesdays with a Twist; The Scoop; Two Cup Tuesday;  Inspire Me Tuesdays; Tuesdays at Our Home;  Party In Your PJ’s;

Wednesday: Make, Bake and Create;   Wined Down Wednesday;  Fluster’s Creative Muster;  Homestead Blog Hop; Wow Us Wednesday;  Waste Less Wednesday; AIM Linky; Talk of the Town, Healthy,Happy & Natural

Thursday:   Our Simple Homestead; Share Your Cup Thursday;  Home and Garden Thursday;  Think Tank Thursday;  Homemaking Party;  This Is How We RollNo Rules Weekend Party

Friday:  Friendship Friday;  Family Fun Friday;  Awesome Life Friday;  Home Matters; Traffic Jam Weekend

Saturday: Saturday Sparks;  Dare to Share; Scraptastic Saturday;  Happiness is Homemade; Anything Goes Pink Saturday; Simple Saturdays

Sunday:  That DIY Party;  Snickerdoodle Sunday; Dishing it & Digging It


If you know of any more blog hops or linky parties not listed along the themes of:  gardening, self-sufficiency, homesteading/farming, crafting for self-sufficiency, recipes using organic and/or wholesome foods – Please leave a link to that website/party in the comment form below and I may add it to the above list!  Thanks!


Recent Posts

The Red Gate

I love driving down beautiful green country roads in the springtime and looking at all of the gates along the road.   I enjoy dreaming and wondering about the lives that live beyond them.

Gee, what do you think is going on behind that gate?  They certainly don’t want anyone to know, now do they!

Unfortunately, it’s just one of the many “we-have-marijuana-plants-but-don’t-want-you-(or the code inspector)-to-know” type gates we see in our area.  Sheesh!  Only in California.

One of the first tasks we completed when we bought our property years ago was to install a gate.  Our eldest son, Stephen, took a day out of his busy schedule to help us. We bought the gate at Tractor Supply and it has served us well since then.

Ray and Stephen installing our gate more than 11 years ago.  Boy has that area changed since then!

But now we are in the process of building our new home, and needed to expand the width of our gate, otherwise a cement truck would have some trouble squeezing through. And we are going to need lots and lots of cement trucks!

This wildfire was coming up and over the ridge next to us… a bit close for comfort!                    “There but by the grace of God, go I”

We also needed to make sure a fire truck and/or other emergency vehicles could get through. We have had three wildfires very close to us this year, and had to evacuate once, so we want to make it actually INVITING for fire trucks and emergency personnel to get into our property!

Several years ago, my sister Deana gave us a few small “garden type” gates, which are actually meant to be used with a chain link fence.  But, when you have limited supplies and don’t want to spend money, you “make do”!  So, my dear hubbs and I decided to use that as a temporary fix to widen the entrance to our property.

Now our gate opening is about 14 feet wide. Look at the difference in the size of the trees from the picture above when we first put in the gate!  It doesn’t even look like the same place, but it is!

Once our new house is done, we plan to replace the gate with a prettier gate and install a solar automatic gate opener.  I found these gates below on and really like the first one.  I’m not a real “frufru” type of girl, but a little bit more design than our current gate would be nice.

Since we installed that first gate more than 10 years ago, it was starting to lose some paint where we chained it to the post, and I thought that since we were widening the gate, we would update the whole kit and kaboodle.

I decided to paint both of these gates bright red – or as the paint can says – Satin Apple Red.  Why?  Because living in a forest, it isn’t always easy to see street signs, much less house numbers  So, we have to explain our property whereabouts to visitors as “turn down the lane where you see the first brown gate”.  Unfortunately, in the afternoon, our gate is in the shade, so sometimes it isn’t easy to see the gate, especially since it’s brown!  And our neighbor down the road also has a brown gate. And the neighbor below him!

So after clearing some brush and lower tree limbs, I painted both gates Rustoleum Satin Apple Red.

Doesn’t this look better?

Now, I can tell everyone that we are at the only red gate on our country road, and they can’t miss it.  At least I hope they don’t!!

Here’s the Party:   Thank Goodness It’s MondayGrand SocialMix It Up MondayCreate, Link, Inspire;  Amaze Me Monday,  Over The Moon;   Show & Share TuesdayThe Gathering SpotBrag About ItTuesdays with a TwistThe ScoopTwo Cup Tuesday;  Inspire Me TuesdaysTuesdays at Our Home;  Party In Your PJ’sMake, Bake and Create;   Wined Down Wednesday;  Fluster’s Creative Muster;  Homestead Blog HopWow Us Wednesday;  Waste Less WednesdayAIM LinkyTalk of the TownHealthy,Happy & NaturalOur Simple Homestead; Share Your Cup Thursday;  Home and Garden Thursday;  Think Tank Thursday;  Homemaking Party;  This Is How We RollNo Rules Weekend Party;  Friendship Friday;  Family Fun Friday;  Awesome Life Friday;  Home MattersTraffic Jam WeekendSaturday Sparks;  Dare to ShareScraptastic Saturday;  Happiness is HomemadeAnything Goes Pink SatSimple SaturdaysThat DIY Party;  Snickerdoodle SundayDishing & Digging It

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