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HEIDISHOPE's Recent Blog Entries

Look at my lovely new Garden Bench

Thursday, July 12, 2012

This blog isn't directly about my journey to a healthier me, but it is in a way.

My husband, Brian, found a park/garden bench at a garage sale recently. He bought it for me.


Then he spent his 4th of July 5-day vacation rebuilding it for me.....in 100* + temps!!! emoticon

So, what do you think of it?

Here's a picture of the detail. My daughter painted the vine detail for me.

bench $5, wood $6, paint $3, stain $? (just a bit out of a gallon), DAYS and HOURS in 100* Heat = Priceless Treasure!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MIPALADY23 8/2/2012 8:34PM

    Awesome, that's love!!!

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MJ7DM33 7/12/2012 10:26PM

  You are right it is very, very lovely! We know who loves you alot! Thanks for sharing!

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LUCINDARW 7/12/2012 9:31PM

    The bench is beautiful and very inviting I'm sure you will get lots of use out of it. Lucinda

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1CRAZYDOG 7/12/2012 8:56PM

    What a sweetie! Your DH is a definite keeper! The bench is gorgeous!!

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    Nothing says love like that!!! You are truly blessed!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KSSONRISA 7/12/2012 1:49PM

    emoticon They did such a lovely job. You are a lucky lady.

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SARAHTAIT 7/12/2012 12:10PM

    You have a jewel of a husband...
Your new bench is beautiful...i know it means a lot to you....

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RUNNINGOMA 7/12/2012 11:50AM

    Very inviting and lovely - and a work of love! Got any before pictures?

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LINDAF49 7/12/2012 11:33AM

    WOW...beautiful and a treasure for always not to mention the hours of pleasure sitting and enjoying your garden.

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WENDYLEE15 7/12/2012 10:37AM

    How beautiful..and sweet !!

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LOSER05 7/12/2012 10:23AM

    Beautiful. he done a fantastic job too.

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Garden pictures

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Here's a link to my facebook page pictures of my veggie garden beds


Unfortunately, the pics to my garden bed are in the laptop that has died. Those pics will have to wait until we get it back from the geeksquad.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MIPALADY23 8/2/2012 8:41PM

    Oh wow, great pics! Awesome garden!

Comment edited on: 8/2/2012 8:41:55 PM

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WENDYLEE15 7/10/2012 5:08PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
Your garden looks emoticon !! emoticon

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GRAMMAP1 7/10/2012 12:53AM

    Wow, they look lovely and I am sure they will produce well. Yum. Nothing like fresh fruits and veggies. Most of our gardening friends have had to retire and we don't benefit from their labors any more. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KSSONRISA 7/9/2012 1:01PM

    Your plants look great! . emoticon It appears that you use the square foot garden method. We use a modified form of that method on our garden. We don't have raised beds and we have been fighting the fungus on our tomatoes so much that we started planting them farther apart to let them breathe

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CTUPTON 7/9/2012 12:28PM

    You will have plenty of fresh veggies soon! emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 7/7/2012 9:36PM

    it really is fulfilling to grow your own veggies! I know my garden is ready for this heat wave to end!

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HANDYV 7/7/2012 2:34AM

    Wow. Great looking garden. I guess I'm just lazy - I have plenty of space where I could have a garden but I only managed to do 5 tomatoes plants in pots. I commend you. I hope you have a bountiful harvest. emoticon

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GOPINTOS 7/6/2012 9:09PM

    OMG, I loved this!!


Smile and Enjoy the Rest of Your Day!
Melinda (gopintos)
Country Living Team

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SARAHTAIT 7/6/2012 9:54AM

    Wow..I am so envious of your beautiful garden...I am in an apartment right now and unable to work in the yard...
What you have done is an art....so beautiful...you have a definite green thumb!

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DEERLADY45 7/6/2012 8:32AM

    Beautiful my friend! We have a community Garden at the church and have learned alot on Vegetable gardening!( Pic on my page) BLessings and Hugs ! Thanks, BONNIE

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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    Your garden is GORGEOUS!!! I love gardening too. Congrats on your healthy vege plants, they're doing great. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MJ7DM33 7/5/2012 6:41PM

  Everything looks good!

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JENNY888 7/5/2012 5:50PM

    Loved the pics of your square gardening. I have been doing the same for two years now. We grew a 36 pound zucchini in one of our beds last year. It had only been on the vine for a week or so and was not old. We gave it to the local food shelter and they made veggies for everyone.

We also have had problems with tomato cages. The tomatoes just went crazy last year and were everywhere. They started out with such nice stakes but grew to over 12 feet tall and we had a spiderweb of ropes in the garden holding the huge vines up. We had all the tomatoes we wanted though and gave them away to everyone we knew.

Instead of using much between the beds we got used carpet from a carpet company and cut it to fit between the beds and around the perimeter. It worked well and is still there this year with no weeds. Occasionally a weed will pop a head through the carpet layer but is very easy to yank. It isn't the prettiest mulch but the most effective one we have found. It is also nice to kneel on when we are gardening.

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PEPPYPATTI 7/5/2012 5:14PM

    Your veggie garden is beautiful! You are very talented I can see!
emoticon emoticon

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Gardening and Chiggers!

Thursday, July 05, 2012

emoticonI LOVE gardening!

I tend to spend my mornings outside in my gardens.

I have 10 raised veggie beds, 1 raised strawberry bed, and many flower borders : the Butterfly Border (natives and non-native plants), the (native) Prairie Border, a Hosta Border, and a Dense Shade (all natives) Border.
I use the Dense Shade Border on the north side of the house as a kind of "nursery" since the soil is so wonderful. Any native plants I rescue go in there while they recover from the shock of being moved and they can just concentrate on making roots.
I also have a section of our woods that was over-run by nasty Garlic Mustard and Japanese Honeysuckle which have just about killed out any natural understory. I've worked for 2 years to clear it of the invasive plants, and cutting back the native Prairie Rose to controllable size. I will soon be ready to begin planning and planting some spring ephemerals and ferns in there to create a Woodland Garden. My husband is working on a lovely castiron and wood park bench he got for me from a garage sale. It will be put in the Woodland Garden for a cool spot for reading, resting, or dreaming.

Yesterday morning, I spent about 3 hours working in the flower borders.
I enlarged one to make room for more marshy/swampy native plants I've collected from various sources. I had the plants in the north-facing Dense Shade Border, but they needed more sun and water to thrive. So, where the hose spigot is and the ground stays damp, I enlarged it to the the SW and transplanted the Marsh Marigold, Woodland Wild Petunia, and Swamp Buttercup. There was already Swamp Milkweed and a Blue Flag Iris in the border. I still need to locate and plant several Cardinal Lobelia to "complete" (HA!, right fellow gardeners?!?! LOL) this border. This border is now called The Wetlands Border.

I also moved 2 varieties of native Beardtongue (think wild foxglove) from that Dense Shade Border to a border along our garage which receives a lot more sun. I got those moved just in time too...they are beginning to seed, so I'll have more Smooth Beardtongue and Foxglove Beardtongue next spring!

The Hosta Border was recently enlarged to hide a downspout. So I transplanted the natives Purple Rocket and Woodland Phlox in there, along with an unknown variety of Coral Bells. There's already Virginia Bluebells in there waiting for their 1st spring. After the mass of native Turtlehead bloom and before they seed in the Dense Shade Border, I'll move them into this border as well.

I also spent a few minutes harvesting our 1st green beans of the season for our 4th of July lunch and tying up tomato plants in the garden area.

I am used to getting a few chigger bites after spending time outside. Since we moved to the country to our home in the woods 4 years ago, we've battled with chigger bites. Our poor black lab/golden retriever! With his long hair, he battles with them on his legs and belly all spring through summer until frost. And no flea drop or collar works on chiggers.

I look like I have the chickenpox!! I am covered in bites all over my trunk and behind my knees!! I showered after being outside, but somehow the nasty emoticon lil buggars survived. They spent the 4th of July hiding in my unmentionables emoticonand biting me along the elastics and straps and anywhere else they could! What am I supposed to wear today?!?!?!? I need a moomoo with no hem edges, straps or elastic anywhere to irritate the bites!!

So, gardeners and Outdoor Women.....how do you deal with Chiggers?!?!?!

I think I'll go soak in some Epson Salts in my garden (HA!) tub. sigh.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KSSONRISA 7/9/2012 2:09PM

    Sorry to hear about your discomfort. I hope you got relief from your chiggers quickly. I am fortunate not to have much problem with chiggers or mosquitoes. Bugs just are not a huge fan of my chemistry. Oh, I get bit, but not to the point of being eaten alive like you are describing. I have used both chigger aid and benedryl and either one will help with the itching.

Your garden sounds beautiful! I don't recognize most of the flower names you mentioned, but I am afraid my knowledge is limited mostly to what I actually have experience with. With such a large, beautiful garden, you must get lots of exercise.

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SARAHTAIT 7/6/2012 9:18AM

    Chiggers...yuck..been there and HATE it! I put nail polish on them...it seems the help the itch and supposedly smothers them. I also last time had them horribly bad and went out and bought lice shampoo and bathed with it daily to sped up the process of getting rid of them. There is something called chigger aid at the store but in my process of trying it...seemed like nail polish almost to me and worked almost the same....
Bless your heart..chiggers are NOT fun and I hate to know how miserable you are....hang in there!

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ASOBFALLS 7/5/2012 5:45PM

    I dab straight bleach on the chigger spots...3Xday for 2 days and they are gone.
If you have already scratched and the skin is open...NOT good to try bleach.
My Dad took this one step farther and 'bathed' his legs in bleach regularly and this caused skin injury.

I was covered once and my pharmacist tried to get a course of steroid meds for me but Doc wouldn't do it.

Benadryl help with the itching???

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WENDYLEE15 7/5/2012 3:17PM

    How beautiful that all sounds..except for the Chiggers, of course. I just got my first green beans out of the garden this morning!! I wish also that I had something to tell you as far as getting rid of those buggers or getting more relief..that's awful . I hope your feeling better soon :)!!
emoticon emoticon

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RUNNINGOMA 7/5/2012 1:02PM

    Sounded heavenly until I heard about the chiggers! I only knew they lived in water because sometimes we weren't allowed to go swimming if there were chiggers in the lake.
Sorry, no remedy from me - but wish I could send you a moo moo!! I laughed when I read that! emoticon - sorry, closest I could come!

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EBLOOMING 7/5/2012 12:38PM

    emoticonI loved hearing about your garden, your beautiful bench, and the wilderness! Bite those chiggers back with some notable spray!!! emoticon It sounds like you have a case for DR.
I LOVEto get outside and garden also.
~ Elaine

Comment edited on: 7/5/2012 12:40:19 PM

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CTUPTON 7/5/2012 12:23PM

    Oh you poor thing! I sure hope you can get rid of these buggers fast! And the bites too! Sorry, I don't know a remedy. Do you have a magnifying glass. tehy might be called chiggers in your area or maybe called something else here in Connecticut. They sound just awful!!!!! Chris

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_JULEE_ 7/5/2012 10:32AM

    I don't get huge numbers of chiggers. But I've gotten enough of them in my garden to get bit a few times. I use food grade diatomaceous earth - sprinkle it right in the area where I think they're living. If it doesn't get them, I then turn to garlic or pepper spray.

Your problem sounds much bigger than mine, however. I would suggest skipping DE (it's great to have around, tho) and spraying garlic or pepper spray - I get it from NeptunesHarvest dot com. In my opinion, the hot pepper wax works better on the chiggers emoticon

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EGALITAIRE 7/5/2012 10:13AM

    I got tired just reading how many flowers and plants you have - I would love to have a garden like that - but probably not able to commit to the work necessary to keeping it beautiful - yours is an inspiration though.

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GEMINI-SKY 7/5/2012 10:10AM

    I don't seem to have chigger problems...knock on wood !!!
But when I go into the garden, I take dryer sheets with me. They keep away the mosquitoes. Maybe they will work on chiggers !
I just put one in my pocket (I wear nurses scrubs to garden in, love the pockets) or under my chin draping on the neck line.
Also, I use the cheap ones from the dollar store.
Hope this helps.
PSSST Love you taking care of our native and non-native plants...

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My 2012 Summer Exercise Routine

Monday, June 25, 2012

Midwest heat and humidity are here. emoticon
I've tried, but I just can't power-walk outside with the humidity. It makes me feel sick for the rest of the day. I thought when I got off bp meds, that sick feeling would go away, but maybe they just compounded an issue I have with heat and humidity because of a different health issue (hypothyroid or fibromyalgia or perimenopausal) or maybe it is just aging and not tolerating it as well anymore.

So my exercise routine for this summer is....
*gardening in early am and after 7pm when temps and humidity are easier to handle.
*Walking DVDs with Leslie Sansone in the airconditioning.
Mon- 2mile, Tues- 1 mile, Thurs- 3 miles, Fri-1 mile
(different distances to keep my body guessing)
*Coach Nicole DVD for strength training Tuesdays and Fridays
*Yoga DVD- at least 3x week, more would be better.
*Grab some extra fitness whenever possible (family hike ,family projects on weekend, etc) I do still have all that "spring cleaning" yet to do............but that's another story. emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARZIPAN22 7/2/2012 11:33AM

    Adapting instead of "excuse"ing ! Great !!

Comment edited on: 7/2/2012 11:33:56 AM

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1CRAZYDOG 6/25/2012 11:54PM

    As one with thyroid problems, too, I identify! Hot (or cold) intolerance is a hall mark. You just do the best you can! And that's exactly what you're doing.

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WENDYLEE15 6/25/2012 11:19AM

    Sounds like a great plan. The heat makes it tough !! We don't have air conditioning..and the humidity gets nearly unbearable at times. Working on finishing fixing up the basement so we can go down there to cool off.
Great job at not letting the heat interfere with your fitness :)
Have a wonderful week !!
emoticon emoticon

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SARAHTAIT 6/25/2012 11:00AM

    Wonderful.......you go gal! I am so proud of you!

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YULLABELLE 6/25/2012 10:06AM

    Sounds like a great plan to a healthier you. emoticon

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DENNISWIFE 6/25/2012 10:02AM

    ...great plan! Happy summer

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Made to Crave, chapter 19 (last chapter)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

"Live as an Overcomer" reflection

"Jesus girls aren't made to get stuck in a state of defeat.
We aren't.
We were made to walk in paths headed toward victory. This doesn't mean these paths won't be riddled with struggles we'll need to learn to overcome. They will. For lessons on overcoming are some of God's greatest gifts."

"Revelation 2:7: 'To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God."

I am on the path headed toward victory! I am overcoming! Having the right to eat from the tree of life will be sooooo worth any struggle I have here on earth...even my struggles with overeating, poor food choices, laziness, pain, health issues, emotional eating.

Victory is possible.....as long as I depend on God, not on myself.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BROWNCOFIDDLER 6/24/2012 10:42AM

    That's a wonderful reflection. Love it. Through God all things are possible. emoticon

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LDMCNIEL 6/23/2012 9:04PM


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LOOKINGUP2012 6/23/2012 6:51PM

    Thanks for a beautiful lesson! I can almost hear you preaching it even though I don't know you. Must be a great book. and the Bible is the greatest book of all.

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