It’s time once again for some Friday fill-in fun, the perfect way to wrap up the week and kick off the weekend! 

From Ann of McGuffy’s Reader:

“The Friendly Fill-Ins are four fun and easy statements to complete. Ellen of 15andmeowing provides the first two statements and the final two are offered by myself. We try to make sure they will be fun to both answer and share. On Friday, the linky will be posted at or about 12:00 AM. Please come back, link up, and share your thoughts!”

And away we go! Here are this week’s statements with my fill-ins:

1. In the Spring, I look forward to… All the plants and trees coming alive! I’m really looking forward to seeing what kind of trees, plants and bushes we have on our new property – the description said ‘multiple fruit trees’, but no one ever specified what kind of fruit. So it’s going to be fun to find out! Plus there are funky plants like these I’m curious to see how they develop:

I didn’t realize these were actually white/cream colored for real – I thought someone had painted them when they were painting the house during the upgrade. I thought for sure we’d have to pull them out and plant new plants, but these are pretty cool! There are groupings of them in a flower bed along the sidewalk from the driveway to the front door:

The main reason I thought they might be painted is because there is a plant in the ‘L’ corner where our decks meet that is loaded with paint (though there is signs of life, so we’ll see how this does):

The flower bed below the living room window is rife with mystery plants (plus one that looks 100% dead, with brown leaves and even flowers suspended in time, but there is new growth at the base of it, so we’re going to cut it back and see what happens:

Look! There’s a Raymond Reddington watching me through the window:

I’m also looking forward to seeing this tree come to life out of dormancy:

My niece thinks it might be a Japanese Maple – if so, I’m gonna love it even more! There’s another (giant) one near our front rock wall (that I also love):

We also have some fruit trees we’re anxious to see what kind they actually are. There are 6 duplicate ones planted in a reverse ‘L’ in the yard, but some of them are too shaded by the bushes along the property line, so we’ll have to cut those back to let the trees themselves flourish:

And some plants and trees along the side of the deck I’m looking forward to figuring out what they are and seeing how they flourish as spring arrives full force:

So much excitement for spring this year!

2. I would love to have a… Themed Murder Mystery or Who Dunnit party. I’ve been eyeballing these on Amazon:

Of course the first one I’d want to do is this one:

The description reads: Put on your own mystery dinner theater: murder’s on the menu, and everyone’s a suspect in this grownup game for six to eight players. The game includes everything you need to serve up mystery, murder, and fun: a shopping list, menus, and recipes by cookbook author Sandra Gluck; eight party invitations and envelopes; place cards; secret clues; and, best of all, a murder mystery to solve.

Just invite your friends to dress up and play the roles of the devious suspects (each with his or her own character booklet with roles and background info): Otto Von Schnapps, Tiny Bubbles, Papa Vito, Marilyn Merlot, Ralph Rottingrape, Hedy Shablee, Bonny Lass, and Bud Wizer.

Serve up a meal or light snack, play the (included) cassette tape with its introduction, summary of events, and solution to the crime. Find out who killed California vineyard owner Barry Underwood, and why.

Doesn’t that sound like fun? Hopefully, though, they’ve updated the ‘cassette’ with a CD instead…heh!

3. Few know this about me, but… I’m very handy. My dad made sure all of us kids would help him whenever he tackled a project, so we all learned (whether we wanted to or not) how to work with power tools. 

I know what all those tools (and more) are, and have used a version of each of them at one point in time or another. I love getting creative with tools!

4. No one… puts Baby in the corner! Sorry, I couldn’t resist. Well, I could, but chose not to. #SorryNotSorry

Now it’s time to Celebrate the Small Things! I’m joining in this fun blog hop to join some awesome bloggy friends and meet new ones – click on the badge for more information and if you’d like to play along, too!

Celebrate blog hop

This week I’m celebrating in spite of the hubby being home all week on spring break, I’m making progress on next month’s A-Z Challenge – I’ve never participated in that, in spite of the fact I’ve been blogging since 2008, so I guess my 13th year is as good a time to start as any, right? I did the ‘great reveal‘ earlier this week – winemaking, of course! So if you’re interested, you’ll get to read all about it during the month of April!

I’m also (still) celebrating the fact that a recipe I entered in a contest ended up being a finalist! I submitted a recipe “Kahlua Glazed Black Russian Boozy Cake” – so if you could pretty please take a minute to go vote for my recipe, I’d be forever in your debt!

The finalists have been posted on this web page:

The deadline for voting for the winner is Monday, April 3, 2017 at 11:59 p.m., so tell all your friends and family to go to that page and vote! Please and thank you!

That’s a wrap! Hope you join in the fun! Check out the other Friendly Fill-Ins participants and join in if you feel the urge for some fun!


Fridays are more fun with these blog hops:

Follow Who? Social Weekend HopCelebrate blog hop



  1. Have fun participating in the A to Z Challenge! Your mystery parties must be a blast. Have a nice weekend.

  2. Your yard is beautiful and how exciting to see what comes up. I like those white plants. Thank you for participating in the fill-ins, great answers. I like the idea of a murder mystery and how appropriate to do a wine themed one. Have a great weekend!

  3. Good luck with the contest, Stacy.

    I look forward to seeing your yard fully in bloom. We had a yard full of mystery when we moved into this house, too. 🙂

    That mystery party sounds interesting. It reminds me of the game Clue.

    Have a blessed weekend!

  4. Multiple fruit trees are great. I once had a house where I could eat all summer just from the fruit trees in the yard. The flowering plum trees were beautiful there. Have a great week.

  5. Yes, i voted for your cake, it sounds so good!

    A murder mystery party sounds great, although if they haven’t updated from cassettes yet, the company is in trouble!

    Even though i don’t imbibe for health reasons (and for the fact that i know i can’t hold my liquor, so i don’t even try), learning about winemaking sounds fascinating, and A to Z is a fun challenge.

    Your garden and yard look like they have so much potential, i envy anyone with a green thumb, i can even kill silk houseplants so i have to settle for a weedy lawn.

    Hope you have a fabulous weekend!

  6. It looks like you’ll have fun seeing all the new plants come up. It will be so neat to see how the tree turns out. It’s so cute to see Raymond peeking at you through the window. 🙂 I saw that someone else on this blog hop also say she would like to throw a murder mystery party. It sure sounds fun! I’m so envious of your handy knowledge!

  7. I’m a bit jealous of all those pictures of your green lawn! Mine is still very much covered in snow piles, slush and mud. Those murder mystery games sure do look like fun!

  8. I voted for your recipe! I hope you win! I dunno…plants that are cream colored just don’t seem like plants to me. I wonder what your fruit trees will be. We had a cherry tree in our back yard in Indiana. We’d make cherry compote! Yay for your being handy and good luck getting the A-Z posts done. 🙂

  9. Exciting to be in a new place with lots to discover. Seems you will have a fun summer. The funky white plant looks like Dusty Miller. It’s a great plant, very hardy gets bushy but not wild and very easy to care for.

  10. There’s so much lovely nature on your property I wanna come pitch a tent and live in it!! 🙂
    A murder mystery party would be sooo cool!! I’d so love to do one of those.

    BWWAAHH… I carried a watermelon. hee hee

  11. Oohfun! You have lovely property there. It will be fun to see what grows! Enjoy! I think it is great that you are handy. I can usually figure things out when I need to, but Bill is the Boss of Tools. Your party sounds like a lot of fun. I would love that! Hugs.

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