Beauty Berry Jelly

In Livingston in the woods beneath the trees lies the beautyberry bushes.

They are everywhere if you can beat the wildlife to them you will have a treasure.

The wildlife loves the berries but they are too tart for people to eat. They do make some delicious jelly.

My grandchildren picked almost two gallons and then asked me to make some Jelly.

This was my first time making the beauty berry jelly but it turned out great.

We ended up with 14 half pints in the first batch and 8 pints and 2 – 1/2 half pints in the second batch.

That was not too bad for almost 2-gallon zip locks of berries.

Yellow Squash recipe

We put up a lot of veggies in the springtime.

We usually plant 3 kinds of squash so there is always plenty of squash in the freezer.

We seal a meal the fresh veggies this seems to preserve that fresh flavor we love so much.

Thaw it and drain all the water out first this is very important.

I made up this recipe but 95% of the time I like my experiments.

Add a few tablespoons of olive oil to a baking dish and place the squash in a ziplock after it’s drained add two envelope packages of Italian seasoning salad dressing mix, salt, pepper, and about 1/2 cup of panko bread crumbs shake well in the ziplock to coat evenly.

Place in the baking dish top with chopped onion, fresh parmesan cheese, parsley, and melted butter bake at 375 degrees with foil loosely on the top for 20 – 25 minutes remove the foil to finish baking. Mine took a total of 40 minutes once the parmesan melted I recovered it.

Here is a picture of the completed side dish. We actually loved the flavor of this dish.

Taking turns

The mockingbird anxiously awaits his turn at the deep bird bath.

There are 4 bird baths together but the bigger birds prefer the deep one.

The mockingbirds can be aggressive but so can the blue jays I guess they figured out a system that worked out for them both.

Nature seems to get along just fine even when they do not know I am watching them.

Two squirrels visiting

These two squirrels visited on two different days.
The one in the actual feeder is smaller and more skittish than the other one. I feel like he is younger.

I feed the birds but a lot of different wildlife enjoy the seed.

Mushrooms on a dead tree

This hackberry tree fell down about a year ago it was blown down by strong wind while the ground was very wet.

My husband cut part of the trunk up for me to use as plant stands outdoors. They work pretty well for this.

These mushrooms look like oyster mushrooms but I am not sure for sure if that is what they are. The tree trunk was taken over by them and this did not happen until the tree fell down.

I thought the mushrooms made a nice picture.

The fungus is among us.

Sylvia the lizard

On my basket plant was Sylvia she watched me as I watched her. She changed leaves a few times but used them like umbrellas from the sun. Even lizards worry about the sun’s rays and their skin.

We seem to have a good population of green anole lizards and I do love photographing them.

After I noticed her still there about one hour later I decided she needed a macro photo session.

A lizard’s skin is so neat to look at under magnification and I love the turquoise around the eye. She was small but had a few battle scars. I feel like since the throat never swelled up she was a girl.

The curiosity of the photographer is always matched by nature.

The little red shed

Next door is a little red shed and it shows up good sometimes.

This field had recently been mowed and that’s when it can really show off.

The best part of the country is the free space that is only occupied by livestock.

I love it when the cows are next door.

Oreo and her panda calf

Oreo is a belted galloway she had her calf on Saturday night.

We think it’s a full fledge panda calf if so it’s her first panda.

The dad is a miniature Hereford named Cecil.

The baby is tiny, and Oreo can be a bit aggressive in protecting her babies, so there is no close interaction at this time.

I love the calf’s two black eyes and her sweet face I would name her moon pie.

Black and white cows in the piney woods of east Texas make a good backdrop for pictures.

Basket Plant

Callisia Fragrans Plant is also known as a basket plant.

My sister n law gave me a piece about 5″ long this was 6 weeks ago.

Mine is staked up and about 2 1/2 feet tall now. All those arms coming out the side are new babies there are currently 12 of them.

I staked it up to see what would happen because typically those babies droop.

This is one of my new favorite plants and I am about to take some clippings off mine to have more plants.

Share plants with your family and friends it is an excellent way to get a lot of different varieties of plants.

Lizard hanging out

I saw this anole lizard hanging out on the Agave Mangrove plant.

The colors of the plant and the lizard went quite well together.

I have not seen many geckos since the freeze a year ago and that upsets me.

I need to find a location and import some to the house.

The critters in your yard are always watching you but at times they can be quite sociable.

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