Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Tuesday Tidbits...


Ain't she sweet?
this teeny tidbit of a finch is a young one who fledged not so very long ago

when these babies leave the nest for their first flight...
the whole world of finches on our farm set up a frenzy of chirpy excitement
it seems to be a big-to-do for them...
that catches my attention with all their pretty music



and then, there was this nest high up in a guava tree just feet from the cottage


a very once-elusive bird that I believe may be the Bare Eye Thrush...
decided the food around the farm was too good to pass by...
without nesting in one of the trees to bring babies up in

I found it quite difficult to catch a good snapshot of mama...
she was nervous and moving too much...
so I left her alone to feed the babies

but, if you look closely, you can see the yellow ring around the eye...
which is how they came to be named Bare Eye Thrush


the Lord gave 3 chicks to this particular pair who boldly came to our farm


and just recently, these cuties winged their way from the nest and are somewhere out there



the Giant Gray Sphinx Moth caterpillars mentioned in the July 25 post...
have done an excellent job of stripping the Frangipani trees of their leaves


only I'm not so sure they all got their fair share...
as we only have two of these trees and they are not very large quite yet

I am hoping they all got enough to get them to the next step of cocooning into moths


and in spite of denuding the poor trees...
already, the new leaves are starting to push their way out from the branches

and, I did not notice when the photo was snapped...
but, there he is; a little lizard sitting on the right-hand branch



my husband decided it was time to re-polish the wood floor inside and out 


he had not quite finished a small part as yet...
so we could go in and out while the rest finished drying

and then, of course, when he was ready to finish...
the dogs had to go outside in the yard until the last part was dried

now, the wood looks new again



I have been waiting for the Heliconia to bloom

well...they're here


a very nice color against the cottage's aqua green...
which didn't show up very well in these photos



but, I did find some eggs in the rock garden

the other day, I finally found out where one of my hens was laying her eggs...
and found 10 eggs


she'd been laying there for some days, obviously...
right in front of my nose all along, the sneaky girl


but, I've got her number now



after we thought the cherry trees were done for the time...


one of them suddenly took to blooming and fruiting past the cherry season
but, oh my, don't they look purty hangin' up there from the branch



we may soon start looking like mangoes...
because there are many, many more than we can eat

I've been cutting up a few to freeze for later use when the season is over...
and they will be good for smoothies and mango sauces...
and perhaps some tarts



my husband brought in a 27 pound pumpkin

I put the cup inside to show you how big the cavity is


the fibrous strands goes to the chickens...
and the seeds to us


the ribs of this pumpkin have deep dents that give it a flower shape...
which looked kind of pretty to me


my husband enjoys having pumpkin and pigeon peas in his brown rice...
and it does taste pretty good 


as for the seeds...
they were roasted with some sea salt

I don't bother rinsing off the pumpkin bits from them...
it gives a nicer taste to the seeds


I wanted to let readers know that, this blog will take a two month hiatus...
from August 1 to September 30
if the Lord is willing...I will be back Oct 1
but, there will be two Saturday postcard days during the hiatus...
something in the form of slide videos instead of just a photo
I hope you look for them and enjoy

meanwhile...
may your August and September find wonderful blessings in the Lord's grace
and...
have a cup of cherries, please


Every word of God is pure:
He is a shield unto them that put their trust in Him.
Add thou not unto His words,
lest He reprove thee,
and thou be found a liar.
Proverbs 30:5,6

May your day or night be blessed in God's grace.
- jean

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Saturday Cottage Postcard...


Where little things give the cottage decor



May your day or night bloom in God's grace.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

They're Growing...

This morning...
I needed that cup of coffee...
after the chickens were let out and given some morning rations...
and the dogs fed

coffee always comes after the more important things



these caterpillars (aka frangipani worms) have been busy making a meal of our two frangipani trees
we let them be

 many people panic when they see these caterpillars and will unnecessarily kill them...
thinking all their plants will die...

they do not harm the trees in spite of sometimes completely denuding the branches of their leaves...
the trees always come back strong as ever, with new leaves, every time
God feeds these caterpillars and He brings back the frangipani trees for the next generation


getting to about 9 or more inches long as they eat...
these are the big guys who turn into the Giant Gray Sphinx Moth

the frangipani has a toxic sap that helps these creatures defend themselves...
and our chickens know to stay clear of them

God does make them for a purpose, too...
and it does not bother us one bit, to see them devour the leaves



my husband was taking Farina and her little tag-along back out the gate after a milking...
when she decided the governor plum tree looked good enough to eat


she was indulged to have a few branches hanging too low
she thanked us with more milk later



the crops down by the river are growing quite well...
and on the way to check out their progress, I met a few of God's creatures

a tiny butterfly (although I believe it may be a moth type)



an inch long green grasshopper clinging to a blade of grass



and some of our honeybees



in the July 9th post, I showed how tiny the crops were...
in fact, one couldn't much see them in the photos


well, look now...
because pretty soon, we will be eating these up

the lettuce and tomato...



cucumber and sweet potato...



cabbage, broccoli, eggplant and cauliflower...



red beet and corn

if the Lord so blesses...
we will feast in thanksgiving for His bounty



the butterflies are still in force and doing a marvelous job of looking gorgeous as they pollinate


the sowing of seeds into the ground is a secret thing...
it is the work of God in a mysterious and wonderful way

so it is with the kingdom of God
He sends the workers out to sow...
and it is sovereign God who grows, increases and brings in the harvest...
of the souls He has saved from before the foundation of the earth

And he (Jesus) said,
So is the kingdom of God,
as if a man should cast seed into the ground;
and should sleep, and rise night and day,
and the seed should spring and grow up,
he knoweth not how.
For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself;
first the blade, then the ear,
after that the full corn in the ear.
But when the fruit is brought forth,
immediately he putteth in the sickle,
because the harvest is come.
Mark 4:26-29

and so it is that all glory, power and praise goes to God who does all these things by His own arm

May your day or night be sown in the grace of God.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Saturday Cottage Postcard...


Where wild flowers and farm fresh eggs meet


May your day or night be blessed by God's grace.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Sometimes...


Sometimes...
I love to go down to the riverside...
sit cocooned among the tall trees and listen to the gurgling of the water...
among the rocks, while birds flit in and out among the trees...
and chirp their songs


but, not for long, because it can get a bit mesmerizing...
and then I linger too long while there are things to do

one of our bee hives took a beating from the wax moth...
so, we looked up the answer to see what solution we could use...
to keep those tiny winged pests away from the hives
I came upon Michael Bush's beekeeping website...
and went to his pests page on wax moths
he recommended using a 2 litre bottle with holes in the sides...
with a homemade solution of vinegar, syrup and banana peel

this is supposed to attract and trap the moths and we are hoping it works
we will not use chemical treatments for our bees and their hives



and speaking of pests...
well, this one may be a fly "admiring" my roses...
but, isn't he pretty...just look at those eyes!


and there he goes



my little garden girl has been watching over the Mexican Sunflower plants coming up...
which all grew by seeds wildly sown from the original plants
at least, I'm thinking that's what they are because nothing else was growing there

I did pick of few of the Jump-up-and-kiss flowers growing along the ground under them


and with some of the Duranta blooms...


put them into a tiny cobalt blue bottle to have something pretty to see...
while I strained some honey into the bottle



I do so like the way the honey dribbles into the long neck of the bottle...
as it streams down through the funnel
the sunlight coming in through the kitchen window gave the honey such a pretty golden color



how I do enjoy God's earthly gifts!


and yet, there is nothing sweeter than the Lord's heavenly blessings...
namely the description of the perfect Lamb of God, Jesus Christ...

I have not declined from Thy judgements:
for Thou didst teach me.
How sweet are Thy promises unto my mouth!
yea, more than honey unto my mouth.
By Thy precepts I have gotten understanding:
therefore I hate all the ways of falsehood.
Psalm 119:102-104

and though I can do nothing of myself,
it is when the Lord has taught me by His Holy Spirit,
and by the work of my Saviour,
that His grace is even sweeter than honey

May your day or night find the sweetness of God's grace.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Summertime...


We get two seasons here on this tropical island...
rainy and dry
so, I don't know that we could say it's "summertime" here during rainy season...
but, it's been feeling like it


in any case, the heat doesn't keep me inside when there are interesting things to see and do

this little finchie lady who hangs around the cottage with her mate...


took to sitting after Mr. Finch finished the nest on the corner of the cottage up in the ivy



and when I stepped by the beehives on my way to the garden...
the bees were trying to tell us something
my husband listened and gave them another super, adjusted their opening for more ventilation...
and the sweet bees are now a little calmer



often, with dogs and chickens close by my heels...
I like to wander down to the fruit trees to see what's good to snack on



and the rains bring in wild things like pretty flowers to stare at...


and admire



we are still getting plenty breadfruit on the tree...


and when I pick one, manage to get milky sap from the broken stem all over me...
but, well worth the stickiness



but, oh! these Ceylon mangoes are so good and their flavor tastes...
much like flowers mixed with honey



the citrus are coming along pretty fast and we are looking forward to adding them...
to our culinary menu



of course, there is always a little nest builder using the trees as home



buzzing by the breadfruit tree, I noticed that maribone wasps were swarming in a tizzy
not being sure as to why, it was better to step away and leave them to do their own thing



I did take a peek at the sugar apples on their tree at the bottom of the hill...
and soon, there will be some ready to pick

they will let me know, when the sections start to break loose from each other
when one is ready, I'll post on it to let you know what they are



the fruity booty for the day...
and Foxie just has to put her curious sniffer in to check it out


And the Lord Jesus Christ has promised His people:

I will also deliver you from all your filthiness,
and I will call for corn, and will increase it,
and lay no famine upon you.
For I will multiply the fruit of the trees,
and the increase of the field,
that ye shall bear no more the reproach of the famine among the heathen.
Then shall ye remember your own wicked ways,
and your deeds that were not good,
and shall judge yourselves worthy to have been destroyed for your iniquities,
and for your abominations.
Ezekiel 36:29-31

and He says:

I create the fruit of the lips, to be peace:
peace unto them that are far off,
and to them that are near, saith the Lord:
for I will heal him.
Isaiah 57:19

Amen, Jesus Christ the Saviour

May your day or night find fruitful peace in the grace of God.