Taking Down the Simplest of Christmas Decorations!

I guess the time has come to take down the decorations.  This year it will be especially easy as I barely had the time to put any up.  I'll share what was done Christmas Eve for our decorations.

What Time Is It?

Can you believe it is Christmas Eve?  I can't!  I hope you all have a wonderful day today with the kids awaiting Santa.  We adults still have the happy memories of this day and the excitement we all felt.  Bursting with anticipation for what the night may bring.  The thoughts of gathering with family and friends, the laughter that fills the air!  The kids don't want to eat and rush all others, as my Aunt Fannie used to say, " It's time for the 'Paper Tearing' to begin!"  Are you ready?

Christmas Trees, Decor, Traditions etc.

Photo by Nine Köpfer on Unsplash

Are you ready for Christmas?  Do you have your house clean and decorated?  I applaud you if you do.  I however do not.  I know it comes the same time every year, but am I prepared for it?  Never!  See the photo above,  it isn't mine, as a matter of fact I have no tree up as of yet.  I love Christmas, it is my most favorite holiday.  Evidently I just procrastinate when it comes to decorating.  

The Moon, Blooms and Turkey

Hi All! I hope you enjoyed your Thanksgiving Day! 

Today is Black Friday and what are you doing?  One of my former jobs included working in retail and I can tell you I don't miss it, especially on Black Friday.  Getting up at 3 or 4 am to run into work and be prepared to be mobbed.  I really think we, associates needed helmets for safety!  I'm just joking, well sort of, but I swore that when I got out of retail I wouldn't step foot into even one store.  So far so good, but I can't say that about online shopping. Ah the pleasures of resting after all of the Thanksgiving preps, eating and cleaning to just do nothing!  Enjoy your day and be safe out there.  Me I'll just enjoy the peace.

Coconut Pie

Looking for an easy coconut pie?  This is one that I posted over six years ago on my cooking website.  It never fails and I've yet to meet anyone that likes coconut that doesn't like this pie. My mama always made these and we could almost sit down with one in hand and eat the entire thing.

Update: Haint Blue Porch Ceiling and Insect Myth or Fact?

I started thinking years ago about painting the porch ceiling a pretty blue.  To be exact a Haint Blue color.  I did a post in 2015 talking about and sharing some colors with a little bit of history behind the 'Haint' Blue Porch Ceilings' here.  

In 2017 we finally painted this ceiling (among other things, thanks to Hurricane Matthew.) you can read about that here.  

Today on same topic this ceiling I will update with a little over a year to think about the results.  Is the color a deterrent when it comes to insects such as wasps and nest building birds?  

Simple Thanksgiving Recipes

There are some things that you may want to change but can't.  A traditional Thanksgiving Menu is one of those things. Family and friends expect and look forward to it every year. Each member have their favorites that they like to bring as well and all look forward to them.  

Today I share nothing new but a few of our must have menu items.  

Veteran's Day 2018

Chuck left and Tom Madden on right
Cutting up and preparing for guard duty of  the Ammo Supply Dump
Phu Bai, Vietnam

Today this Veteran's Day we pay tribute to all who have served to protect our country.  I thank you one and all those who have served.  I know at times in our great nation there are those that forget, take for granted or downright belittle the service you have given.  Rest assured there are many more here that are grateful for the freedoms you've helped preserve.  There are no words to convey our thankfulness to you. 

Herb Roasted Turkey Breast

Today I'm wanting turkey.  It starts in November for me.  Guess that is perfect timing Turkey Day is coming.  Thanksgiving is a special time for all of us here for sure.  This recipe is one I did on the cooking blog and today I'm sharing here.  Are you ready for some turkey?

We of course have the whole roasted turkey but the breast is good for anytime.  I don't see much turkey in the markets year round.  Do you?  Seems that in recent years it is an item they stock for this month only.

Potato, Mushroom, Onion Bake Plus Food Talk

I love potatoes, always have loved them!  While doing some ancestral research have linked my namesake's lineage back to Scotland, Ireland. Wales, England.  Maybe that explains my all time love of the potato.  Who knows but today's potato recipe is quite delicious.

Another Hero Taken Way Too Soon!

Investigator Farrah 'Maxine' Turner
End of Watch October 22, 2018

We've lost yet another officer killed in the line of duty.  Dedicated to serving at all costs.  She and Terrence were ambushed as well as all of the injured officers.  Prayer is needed for all.

Traditional Southern Sayings

Is that how you spell it?  I'll be dadgum if I know!  If you're from around here, you know these words plus a whole lot more!  Talking traditional southern words today.

Chinese Snowball

We purchased these beauties in the Spring.  They are gorgeous, huge, but gorgeous.  I usually buy plants and trees in smaller sizes but this year I decided to buy big.  

I planted one in one of our front floating gardens.  You can see the garden island makeover in these two posts:  Makeover and Finish.  This particular Snowball is now beginning to bloom for the Fall!  What a treasure to have!  Now to decide where to plant the other two.  Today talking Snowball Bushes.

We Said Goodbye With Sadness

Terrence Carraway
City of Florence Photo

Our hearts go out to all in our area.  It was only a few days ago and how did this happen?  We live in a relatively small area and things like this just don't happen here, or so we thought.  A tragedy happened that lets us know they do happen and the location makes no difference.

We said goodbye yesterday to a true hero. Chuck and Terrence were friends and fellow officers.  He was never afraid of anything.  Always there when you needed him.  He will be missed.

Goodbye Summer Comforter!

I have really enjoyed this Summer set!  It is beautiful!  Guess it's time to decide what to put on the bed for Fall and Winter.

Sweet Tea with Peach

Hello sweet tea lovers!  I remember years ago going to a wedding in Charleston, South Carolina and at the reception having peach flavored iced tea.  It was delicious!  Funny, I haven't thought about that in years. 

I found a great easy way to have it at home and I thought I'd share it with you.

Let's Make Tomato Sauce Plus Ball FreshTech HarvestPro Sauce Maker

Family trivia, with a tidbit of history thrown in:  My daddy told me something when I first started dating Chuck years ago.  He said, "You dating a mater masher"?  Yes he did! He had only a few years before been fighting in WWII against the Italians. That, of course changed when they became our allies,  Before then, the American soldiers called them 'Mater Mashers'.

Hurricane Florence

Flooding in Marion, South Carolina GERALD HERBERT / AP

Hurricane Florence has finally come and gone from our area.  We are seeing flooding and damage happening in some areas.  I guess in the coming days and months we will know the extent of damage suffered.

Are You Ready?


Hurricane Florence is taking it's sweet time making landfall.  First of all it can't make up it's mind where it wants to go and then changes it several times.  Seriously they've narrowed the path down pretty much.  

It has been a busy week preparing for this storm and we are worn out! Every tub in the house is full of water as well as many more containers.  I guess, we are close to being ready for the blame thing.  We might as well be, it's finally coming.

Chuck and I did a major put away of things yesterday.  Today I took a walk to check on the backyard animals. They are a funny bunch that's for sure.

Please Don't Go

I do enjoy Summer and always hate to see it go.  I say that, and as I say that, I think, "What am I saying?  It is at this moment 93 degrees outside."  Just because the children are in school doesn't mean it has to end, well, does it?

Southern Fried Squash

I remember my Grandma Cora cooking fried squash and sweet potatoes on her wood burning stove.  Wow, her food was delicious, but that kitchen was hot as heck on the hot summer days.
We don't have these often but sure do like them when we do.  This batter mixture can also be used for frying okra and fried green tomatoes as well.  Are you hungry yet?

Product Review: Renogy Outdoor Rechargeable Tactical Flashlight

Hello All!  Today I am doing a product review.  We'll be doing a little something different in that I will be giving my own personal opinion and have enlisted the help of one very experienced Tactical Expert, my husband. Join us today if you will.

Chunky Fruity Chicken Salad

I do like homemade chicken salad and love fruit so what a better combination to make.  Oh well guess this is semi-homemade because I used the Sam's Wholesale Rotisserie Chicken, instead of baking my own.  We like them for a change and so much can be made from them.  This is a very delicious recipe.  I threw everything in it but the bananas, cherries and nectarines we had on hand.  Hey maybe next time.

Island Garden Finish

I can't believe how fast time flies!  Can you?  This was done almost two months ago!  Where does the Spring and Summer go?  Showing the finished garden today.  

Floating Garden Makeover

This project took a lot of hard work and energy to pull off.  You can see in the before picture just how badly it was needed. We have many more gardening beds that have been put on hold until cooler weather.  I am thrilled to share this one with you now.

Lemon Buttercream Frosting

I really love lemon anything.  Do you?  Make your favorite cake recipe and then top it off with this delicious although not so lite frosting!

Growing Lettuce Inside

Hi all! Hope your Summer is going well!  Today I'm talking about a subject near and dear to my heart.  We love salads around here and they can't be beat with the fresh ingredients in season!  Have you seen all of the recalls and warnings that have been issued?  Just, today another is out concerning lettuce and Cyclospora Parasite . It is becoming harder to have a safe food source it seems.  You know I've grown some great herbs in the Miracle-Gro Aerogarden. Some are outdoors in deck pots that were rooted in this system.  Lettuce oh my the lettuce you can grow in this thing!  It will germinate and grow up to the top of the lights as if it is magic.  I kid you not!  I'll show you some pictures today.


This DIY is for making your already homemade laundry soap powder into a pod/cube so it is more convenient.  If you are one that already makes your powdered laundry soap then this is just a little extra step that really does help if you are in a hurry.  If you are one who has contemplated making your own money saving, fantastic cleaning Laundry Soap Powder then hit this link for all of the mixtures I use here at Hibiscus House.  It is easy and the $ Savings are fantastic!

I hesitated making this post that has sat in my drafts for awhile, but decided to go ahead and post.  WARNING: THIS PRODUCT IS NOT EDIBLE!  Who in the world thought that such a warning would have to be put on a cleaning product? 


I have always said that the best look is the most simple one.  Getting older I still stand by that idea.  Simple is better.  Sometimes, especially with allergies we have tell tale signs that give us away.  Some signs may be waking up with very dark under eye circles.  

Sometimes I don't sleep well and am a night owl so it shows in the face.  If I've been extremely busy or stressed it shows.  

All of these things make a difference in how we look.  Eat well balanced meals, get plenty of rest, try to reduce stress where possible and do make the time to pamper yourself. (I should do more of this myself.)  


Boys We Have A New MaryJane'sFarm Picnic Quilt

Most of you have probably heard of Mary Jane's Farm.  She is a wonderful inspiration to all FarmGirls.  As a matter of fact I am one of them and thoroughly enjoy that fact!  We FarmGirls are a varied group.  We have some with hundreds of acres to no acreage, and yet grow even from a bucket on a balcony..  That's right we also have FarmGirls at heart.  That's all it takes, and that is how we bond with our love of growing things.

The boys love picnics with 'Mimi' and I love them too!  It was a joy to learn I'd won one of her beautiful handcrafted quilts "Busy Bee Quilts, Le Picnic".  I told the boys it was picnic time!


"Y'all gonna spend the night here and in the morning y'all gonna see the sun rise behind you and the Statue of Liberty in front." This is what the officer told the soldiers on the ship coming into New York.

How wonderful it must have been to these two weary World War II soldiers.  They had been trying to get home for months from overseas.

Today's story is of the end of the war. Daddy & Jimmie Wheeler's Coming Home!


Photo credit

I was watching QVC recently, and this product was on at the time.  It made me think, do I need this or do I continue to manually block all of the nuisance phone calls?  You know the constant calls scams/spam/insurance-medical, life and medicare supplemental/back & neck braces/walk in tubs/chair lifts/rescue buttons--you know I've fallen and I can't get up. 

I could go on. those are just a few sometimes legitimate, sales pitches.  We won't even go into the illegal scams, spam, and thieves out there, whose sole purpose is to steal!  Today I review this product.

Funny Backyard Animals

Each animal has a certain personality or trait.  I find them all amusing.  Although I don't spend as much time hatching out more chicks or adding to this menagerie of critters, I still enjoy them very much.

New Potatoes Don't You Love them?

Oh my gosh, how I love this time of the year!  Fresh vegetables coming into season are so great!  Today the freshly dug new potato is the topic.

Freezing Butter Beans & Cooking Them

Oh the butter beans, it seems one either loves them or hates them.  I grew up with a mama and grandparents who really liked them.  They were a staple in our family gardens for sure.  Let's face it in southern vegetable gardens butter beans were on the must have list!  They still are as far as I'm concerned. 


I guess I should add personal hygiene tips to this post.  I don't have that many but will share what works for me.  Sometimes being a little bit of a minimalist helps with this one, at least that's what I've discovered.

Simple Sunday: Nests, Gardening, and a Hummingbird Video

Eggs in Nest Oil Painting

I love the wildlife that surrounds us.  Birds and their beautiful nests I especially love.  A quick picture taken will not harm the little ones and when they hatch I sometimes save and display them.  Today I was playing around with a photo editor for the results seen in this post.


Mama always wanted me to hang ferns on this porch of mine.  I wish I had, for her but just didn't relish watering and babying them with the hot sun that shines down on this porch.  

Although the ferns I purchased recently don't hang, I hope they can survive the Summer out here.  We will see. 

Gwen mentioned the ferns to me at the farmer's market, Southern Produce and Plants for locals. Somer said this particular variety of fern would make it in our hot sun.  It's called Kimberly Queen.

Hibiscus House Peacock Sighting!

Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

Don't you think that the male Peacock is absolutely beautiful?  I sure do!  We have some of the strangest things to happen to us here.  You know we live out in the middle of farm fields and a huge swamp behind us acres away.  I love it!  I've seen groundhogs, coyotes, bobcats, racoons, opossums, deer, dingoes, lots of snakes ugh, and even an otter came across the side yard one day!  Today was different!

Lemons Anyone?

Recently I've been sharing money saving tips and still have a few more to go, but today we're talking lemons.  The hoarder in me shops when things are on sale at fabulous prices!  I really like Sur la Table, and have found wonderful things there!

Crust-Less Quiche

We have loads of farm fresh eggs here and I really need to use even more of them.  This is a simple crust less quiche is easy enough to make.  If you like a crust, then by all means make one.

Gardening and Gerbera Daisies

This year I bought a few annuals.  I love the almost immediate color and show you get from them.  It isn't usual for me to buy many of those, since they are short lived.  Mama always said try to buy perennials, so you can have them year after year.  I do seek those first when buying or planting, I confess.  These little Gerbera Daisies just caught my eye, and I couldn't look away.  I've purchased so many in the past, and found that they are short lived for me.  Trying one more time to grow some.


Today I share some tips I use for saving money on cleaning.  I don't proclaim to be an expert on cleaning, but can tell you from experience what works for me. You may have to use a little mixing muscle  and find storage for the supplies you will need. The truth is, in the end you will save so much money!

Where Are You Hummingbirds?

I wonder where they are?  Hummingbirds are such a joy to watch and enjoy.  Last year we had so much home repair going on until we had to take down the feeders.  The old feeders were falling apart from years of use so this year I chose a new type of feeder.  Do you put up feeders for these little beauties?

Back Steps Replaced

photo credit

The girls and I have laughed about bricks and how much I like them.  Old, new, makes no difference to me I really like them.  Our back steps were beginning to have major problems with water damage and some rotting to be specific.  It was time to replace them, they were wooden and then it hit me 'Like a ton of bricks!' Dolly build new ones of brick this time!  Oh yeah and why not get 'Snoop Dog' as he calls himself to build them?  

My Household Tips For Saving Money


Am I frugal?  Maybe somewhat. I have my times of spending but they aren't very often. That is the secret to balanced spending!  You want to have some for shopping, don't you? Join me today as I share saving tips from the kitchen!

Lifestyle Choices and Saving Money

Money, a huge topic.  Are you a spendthrift?  Do you actually think about how much you spend for things?  Are you thrifty? Are you a saver of money or are you frugal?  Who knows what the future holds?  What would we have done earlier if we'd only thought about it?  Talking about things like that today.....

Winner of the MemoVase Announced!



MiracleGro AeroGarden

The girls and I used to joke and say, "The QVC truck is here"!  That was of course UPS delivering and because we ordered so much from them that became the name.  Times have changed, and I don't order/watch QVC as often as I used to, (this hoarder had to cut it out.) but when I do!  I have a tendency to order some things, especially on easy pay that I might think twice about otherwise.  This purchase is one that I am so glad to have made!  Review up today....