It’s June!

Hello!  Official summer is almost here but in the meantime, signs of summer surround us – long, hot days and grass that grows faster than a BMW goes from 0 to 60.  Temperatures began to rise to the 80’s a couple weeks ago, but this morning it was 57 when we took the pups for their first walk of the day.  If only we could preserve that for the rest of the season.

Our garden efforts continue to delight and surprise us (as in – did we really manage not to kill that?):


Mesclun Mix and Romaine…

and some herbs that grow on our porch…


In addition to enjoying the sweet, fresh berries…

…Mr. Fifty Shades experimented with some homemade strawberry ice cream…

…and some strawberry jam

Also, Mr. Fifty Shades built a square foot garden area near the house where we’ve planted tomatoes, peppers, and more lettuce

In non-gardening activities…

We installed this bird house near our house for blue birds but last year and this year, tree swallows encouraged the blue birds to move out.  Here’s the sassy new resident…

I am so weary just taking pictures of all this activity I might have to go eat a bowl of ice cream.

Until next time,

Mrs. Fifty Shades of Green Acres


We’re Back

Hi.  We’re back.  Over the past few weeks, we’ve been reminded  that our last post was over six months ago when we had a little fire in our “back yard.”

Winter and early spring brought lots of rain to our area.  We’re hoping the showers continue as we just planted our spring garden.

For now, we’ll show you our first spring delight, picked just yesterday…

…weighing in at four pounds.  More will be ready to pick today.  We only wish we could share the wonderful smell and sweet flavor…but, not the strawberries.  Ha.  Not really.  Well, maybe.

Until next time…

Mr. & Mrs. Fifty Shades of GREEN Acres


Fire on the Mountain

It’s been a dry fall so far.  Tuesday morning the smell of smoke was heavy.  Our across the road neighbor was burning in his front yard so we chalked the odor up to that.  Later that day the neighbor’s fire was out, but we still smelled smoke.  Yesterday we noticed smoke from an area that appeared to be along the eastern border of our property.  We kept an eye on it and late yesterday afternoon we noticed that the state forestry department had personnel watching the fire from the bottom of our driveway.  Mr. Fifty Shades visited with the forestry folks and the local supervisor gave Mr. Fifty Shades his cell phone number and said the best thing to do was to let the fire burn.  It could not be extinguished anyway and until the fire threatened structures it was best to just monitor it.  However, if the fire got close enough that we became concerned we should call him 24/7.  This morning the fire had crept over the ridge and was working its way across the face of the north and east slopes of our property.  By mid-day the fire had moved close enough that it was time to call the experts to determine what, if any action should be taken.  After surveying the scope of the fire the supervisor from the forestry department said the fire was too big to manually backfire and that a fire line would need to be cut with a bulldozer.  And, to work they went.  One bulldozer and operator together with five other crew members worked on cutting a line around our house and outbuildings to ensure that only the woods burned.  They worked about six hours and when they left approximately 85 acres had been burned, but the fire was under control and adequate protection had been provided for our house.

As everyone knows fire is dangerous and destructive.  However, fire is also life giving in the forest.  In our case, the fire was hot enough to burn off excess fuel on the forest floor and clear underbrush.  At the same time it was not so hot as to damage hardwoods such as oak.  Even though conditions were dry they were not as dry as early spring when the most dangerous of forest fires occur in this area.  In the spirit of silver linings we probably have reduced the danger of the most damaging fires by having this one now.  Most of the visible slopes on our property were burned.  The damage though, was minimal other than to the underbrush.  Nonetheless, it is disconcerting, to say the least, to have your house surrounded by fire.

We are thankful for the hard work of the crew from the Department of Forestry.  We’re all safe and sound.  Really.  

Here’s some of the action:

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Until next time,

Mr. Fifty Shades (with photographic credit to Mrs. F.S.)



Before the Leaves Leave


Cooler temperatures, vibrant colors – delicious!  Before the leaves float away on the fall winds, making their annual descent to cover the ground, here are a few of the sights we’ve been admiring:

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These little guys are taking in the views as well:


Blue Jay found himself an acorn!


Do you think the birds will pose for me one day?  I’d like to get some close-ups better pics!

Until next time,

Fifty Shades of Green Acres



What’s Been Happening

Sage Words

Hi Everyone!


We’ve had a lot going on the last couple weeks and I am EXHAUSTED!


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A couple weeks ago Mr. and Mrs. Fifty Shades took Scout and me for our early evening walk.  We explored the pond area as usual, when Scout conducted one of his jobs by grabbing  a copperhead snake.  In turn, the snake lashed out and bit him on his lower jaw.  We were all pretty stunned, most of all Scout.  We hurried back home but Scout was so dazed he had to stop a couple times and sit.  When we got inside, we called the emergency vet clinic and they said to “bring your baby right over.” Little did they know they would be getting a two-for-one since I needed to come for moral support.

Scout and I hopped into the back seat and I did not take more than my usual 3/4 of the space.  On the ride over, Scout’s lower jaw started to droop a bit and it began to swell.  When we got to the clinic – oh boy!  The Smells!  The Sights!  We rushed into the building and Scout and Mr. Fifty Shades went into an exam room.  I was shaking so hard with all the Smells and Sights that Mrs. Fifty Shades took me outside to calm down.  When we saw a cat prancing around the building, she said, “Oh no,” and ushered me back inside.  Wow!  Did I mention the Smells?  Fantastic!  My quivering continued as strong as ever and the nicest lady wondered if a treat or two might help me.  I certainly thought that would do the trick.  The treats were very tasty and soon thereafter, Mrs. Fifty Shades and I went into the exam room with Scout and Mr. Fifty Shades.  When the vet came in, he told us that Scout was the second copperhead bite he had treated that night.  The vet seemed so nice and I felt I needed to show my appreciation for his looking after Scout.  So, I licked him all over his face to thank him for taking care of my best buddy in the world.  For some reason though, I had to go back out again.  There was talk of someone being too excited.  So, we went back out to the lobby where the Smells were wonderful – have I mentioned that before?  There was a cat there, too.  But, I tried to ignore her.  Then, lots of people came by and said how pretty and sweet I was.  I really liked this place.  When Scout emerged from the exam room, he had been given some antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, and pain meds.

On the ride home, I insisted that Scout use up his usual 1/4 of the backseat.  He was so out of it that he just leaned up against the door and dozed on and off.  I was able to sleep all the way back and had a couple nice dreams about the Smells and the Cats and the Nice People and Treats!  When we arrived home, Scout ran to a corner and laid there all night.  The next several days were tough on my BFF.  We could all tell he was still in pain and his jaw swelled up something awful.   I think he was a little scared, too.   Throughout the first few days, Scout darted from corner to corner and room to room trying to escape the pain.   Mr. Fifty Shades lay down next to him through one particularly rough night so that he wouldn’t be so anxious. We all fretted over that boy and wished we could make him feel better.  Especially me – I really wanted to get him into our new play pen (fenced area), but, we all thought about it and thought the best thing I could do was to give him a little space and breathing room.  It was difficult, though, since Scout and I are used to playing and cutting up all day.  I think Mrs. Fifty Shades was feeling a bit confined, too, because one day she said something about running off some excess energy.  I wanted to help her with that, so we went down to the play pen and I showed her how to play a new game with a tennis ball.  It worked this way – she threw the ball, I retrieved it and then I ran all around while she tried to catch me and get the ball.  How much fun is that?!!

Gradually, our brave Scout got back to normal.  We knew he was on the road to recovery when he wanted to play with me again.  Yay – I am so relieved that my dearest friend is back 100%.  He is the best company ever.  I love you, Scout!

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In other news…

Mr. Fifty Shades continues the work on the “Mow-rage.”  Here you can see that the garage door got installed.  Fancy, fancy.

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He’s working hard now on the ceiling, insulation, and on the electrical and lighting systems.

So, now you’re up to date on what’s going on here.  Now that he’s feeling better, Scout is working on a Scout Report for you.

A comment to the former Hurricane Matthew – so glad you did not hit Florida as hard as expected, but, did you have to go and create havoc for our loved ones in North Carolina?

Well – that is about it for now.  Until next time…

Lots of Love and kisses,

Sage from Fifty Shades of Green Acres

P.S.  Copperheads have been plentiful and on the move all around the southeast.  It’s been dry and they are apparently looking for water.  Mr. Fifty Shades wanted me to share this picture of one he killed about two months ago.  This one is about 18 to 20 inches long and it is nowhere near the length or girth of the one that attacked our Scout.




Florida Family and Friends

To all of you in Florida…

We are watching the storm and thinking of you and your safety.  Prepare well and stay safe.

Please let us know that you are ok when you can.

Related imageMr. and Mrs. Fifty Shades


Happy Fall!

Hello!  Happy First Day of Fall!

This picture is our western view about 10 minutes into the fall season.


This week we’ve enjoyed morning temperatures in the high 50’s, but the highs are in the mid-80’s so it doesn’t feel quite like fall yet.  For now, we’re settling for some beautiful signs of autumn..

The goldenrods are plentiful this September, brightening up the landscape around the pond and at the edge of the woods.

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I just read up on them and they say they are edible.  I think I will resist, though.  I already like too much stuff.

Bright red berries on our dogwood tree signal fall as well as…

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… just a tease of color looking up into our woods…

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In case you are wondering, Mr. Fifty Shades has been working diligently on the “Mow”rage for the tractor/mower.  As you can see, the roof is coming along.

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Until next time,  Fifty Shades of Green Acres