The Zarb Homestead

Living natural and healthy on a simple budget

The Storm From Hail April 30, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Sheena @ 9:11 pm

On Wednesday night we got hit by the worst storm I have ever seen. There were 13 tornadoes in East TN alone and in South Knoxville we had an F1.  We had hail the size of tennis balls and we were out of power for 3 days. Thank goodness we have a basement and was able to get in it before the tornado passed by. Below are a few pictures of the damage. My car and Phil’s truck are totaled. The whole exterior of the house and roof will have to be replaced, but we are very thankful to have minimum damage when so many people lost their lives in this storm. Twister toll is 337, 34 people in Tennessee. Please keep the south in your thoughts and prayers.



Movie Review: Water for Elephants April 23, 2011

Filed under: postaday2011 — Sheena @ 4:36 pm
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The Plot: During the Great Depression, Jacob, a young man who just lost his parents to a car crash is forced to drop out of his Ivy League veterinary school and start a new life with no money and no family. While walking along the train tracks he jumps aboard an oncoming train. On that train, he finds his new life with a second-rate traveling circus named Benzini Brother’s. He finds work as the Vet for the circus and trains the new star-attraction an elephant named Rosie. There he falls in love with the unbalanced ringleader’s wife, Marlene, and the love triangle begins.

My Review: Water for Elephants, was based on the best-selling book by Sara Grue.  As an avid reader, I love it when movies are produced based on novels. It is a “chick flick”, as Phil would say, but the love story is what makes the movie. You’ll go through the roller-coaster of emotions, from laughter to tears with this couple.

The movie was a bit slow in the beginning but it quickly sped up in the middle and all the way to end. My guess is it will be a number one selling movie in the box-office but not for the story line but for the actors involved. Teenage girls are going to be standing at the box-office to buy their ticket to see Robert Pattson. However this is nothing like his previous movies.

My Recommendation: Go see it in the theater 


Does anyone play this game? Words With Friends? April 22, 2011

Filed under: postaday2011 — Sheena @ 11:54 pm
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My new addition on my on phone is the game Words With Friends.


  • Highly anticipated and super fun Scrabble game
  • Play random boards or opponents or invite your friends
  • Features a Chat


  • Very glitchy, sometimes showing combined screens if playing more than one opponent
  • Notifications system needs work
  • Has very intrusive ad screen and offers no paid version to get rid of them
  • Drains your battery if your on it too long
Just like Scrabble you’re presented with letters to make words on the game board. The best strategy is to spell words that result in high scores taking advantage of Double Letter (DL), Double Word (DW), Triple Letter (TL), and Triple Word (TW) squares. The blank space is a bonus piece, when you lay it down you have the option to choose any letter.
Does anyone else play this game?  If you do my screen name is : SheenaBolt

Please Pray – Phil’s Grandmother is missing April 18, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Sheena @ 11:21 pm
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Four people, including one juvenile, were arrested on drug charges at the home of a woman reported missing.

Lee County Sheriff’s deputies were sent to conduct a well-being check at the home of Mary Ann Zarb after her family expressed concern.

When deputies arrived at her home on Country Barn Drive in Estero, they discovered a rear sliding door unlocked, but no one inside the residence.

Deputies returned to the home later in the evening and as they walked up to the home saw four people inside, one of whom appeared to be snorting cocaine off of a table, deputies said.

The deputies detained 19-year-old Stephen Smutney, 18-year-old Nicole Durden, 17-year-old Tiffany Sipp, and 24-year-old Shane Simpkins.

Sipp and Durden said that Zarb had hired them to do some remodeling, and left with a friend for Tampa on Monday.

“She let us use her car and we watched her dog for her,” said Durden.

“She said she’d just see us later and left,” Sipp added.

Smutney was charged with one count of obstruction of justice after having to be physically restrained by officers at the scene, according to deputies.

Durden’s purse revealed a silver marijuana pipe and rolling papers, according to deputies. She has been charged with one count of possession of drug paraphernalia.

A search of Sipp’s purse revealed a small container with two 30mg Oxycodone pills, according to deputies. She was charged with possession of a controlled substance without a prescription and transported to the juvenile assessment center.

Simpkins was identified as the suspect who appeared to be snorting cocaine, deputies said. Simpkins was charged with one count of possession of cocaine.

64-year-old Mary Ann Zarb still remains missing. Deputies say her disappearance is highly suspicious but they won’t say whether or not the four found in her home are suspects in her disappearance.

Zarb’s car was towed away as evidence, and her home is still being considered as a potential crime scene.

Four arrested at home of missing Estero woman.


Wedding Traditions and Customs History April 9, 2011

Filed under: postaday2011 — Sheena @ 2:10 am
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When I started looking for some of the things needed for a wedding I  started asking why do I have to have this and that. Why do we still have some of the wedding traditions like the garter toss? Below is what I found:

  • Best Man:

As marriages were historically accomplished by capture (the groom would kidnap the woman), a warrior friend was often employed. This Best Man would help the groom fight off other men who wanted the captured woman, and would also help in preventing the woman’s family from finding the couple.

  • Bridal Party:

The bridal party has many origins, not the least of which are the Anglo-Saxon days. When the groom was about to abduct his bride, he needed the help of many friends, the “bridesmen” or “brideknights.” The “gentlemen” would make sure the bride got to the ceremony on time and to the groom’s house afterwards. The bride also had women to help her. These were known as the “bridesmaids” or “brideswomen.”

  • Bridal Showers:

The Bridal Shower originated with the intent to strengthen friendships between the bride and her friends. In this gathering, the bride’s friends would give her moral support and help her prepare for her marriage. The idea to give gifts is fairly new; originating circa the 1890’s. At one shower, the bride’s friend placed small gifts inside a parasol and opened it over the bride’s head so that the presents would “shower” over her. When word of this hit the fashion pages, people were so taken with the idea that they decided to do the same at their showers.

  • Bride on the left, Groom on the right:

When the groom fought off warriors who also wanted his bride, he would hold onto her with his left hand, while fighting them off with his sword in his right hand (we suppose there were no Southpaws in those days of yore), which is why the bride stands on the left, and the groom on the right.

  • Diamond Engagement Rings:

These lavish gifts were given by medieval Italians in the belief that the diamond was created in the Flames of Love.

  • Garter Toss/Bouquet Toss:

In the 14th century, it was customary for the bride to toss her garter to the men, but sometimes the men got too drunk, and would become impatient and try to take the garter off her ahead of time. (Eventually the groom got into the act and saved his bride from the unruly mob…we hope). All the same, it got to less trouble for her to toss her bridal bouquet instead.

  • Honeymoon:

Following the abduction, the groom would put himself and his bride into hiding – the Honeymoon – so that by the time the bride’s family found them, the bride would already be pregnant.

  • Shoes on the Bumper:

Tying shoes to the bumper of the car represents the symbolism and power of shoes in ancient times. Egyptians would exchange sandals when they exchanged goods, so when the father of the bride gave his daughter to the groom, he would also give the bride’s sandals to show that she now belonged to the groom. In Anglo-Saxon times, the groom would tap the heel of the bride’s shoe to show his authority over her. In later times, people would throw shoes at the couple. Now, thankfully, folks just tie shoes to the new couple’s car.

  • Something Blue:

In continuing with the discussion of the white wedding dress, it should be noted that – in Biblical days – blue represented purity. Thus the bride and groom would wear a blue band around the bottom of their wedding attire, hence something blue.

  • Stag Parties:Ancient Spartan soldiers were the first to hold stag parties. The groom would feast with his male friends on the night before his wedding. In this event he would say good-bye to the carefree days of bachelorhood and swear continued allegiance to his comrades.
  • Tie the Knot:

This wonderful expression originated from Roman times when the bride wore a girdle that were tied in knots which the groom had the fun of untying. As a side note, this phrase can also refer to the tying of the knot in Handfasting Ceremonies, which were often performed without the benefit of a clergy.

  • Veil:

Along with these kidnappings and bartering, there were also arranged marriages. In these, the groom’s family informed him that he was to marry…but they very rarely let him see the bride. After all, if the groom didn’t like the bride’s looks, he might not agree to the marriage. With this in mind, the father of the bride gave the bride away to the groom who then lifted the veil to see his wife of all eternity for the first time. (I have to wonder how many of these grooms voiced their reactions aloud.)

  • Wedding:

Although the aforementioned events were common, marriage by purchase was preferred. Quite often the bride was exchanged for land, political alliance, social status and/or currency. Indeed, the Anglo-Saxon word “wedd” meant the groom would vow to marry the woman – and that the bartered goods and/or currency would go directly to the bride’s father. (Side note: the very word “wedding” comes from the root term meaning “gamble” or “wager”.) In short, a wedding seemed little more than the purchase of a bride for breeding purposes. Not a particularly liberated point of view.

  • Wedding Bands:

It is unknown when wedding bands were first worn. They were probably made of a strong metal such as iron. (One can easily guess the portent of an omen if a wedding band broke.) As far back as the ancient Romans, there was a belief that the vein in the third finger ran directly to the heart, so the wearing of rings on that finger joined the couple’s hearts and destinies.

  • Wedding Cake:

Like most any other ritual handed down from the ages, a wedding wouldn’t be complete without fertility symbols, like the wedding cake. Ancient Romans would bake a cake made of wheat or barley and break it over the bride’s head as a symbol of her fertility. (Whether this meant cracking the cake above the bride’s head or actually bonking her on the noggin with it is rather unclear. We’re not sure we want to know…) Over time, it became traditional to stack several cakes atop one another, as tall as possible. The bride and groom would then be charged to kiss over this tower without knocking it over. If they were successful, a lifetime of good fortune was certain for the new couple. Finally, during the reign of King Charles II of England, it became customary for cake to be a palatable palace iced with sugar.

  • White Wedding Dress:

Anne of Brittany made the white wedding dress popular in 1499. Before that, a woman Just wore her best dress. It should be noted that a white wedding dress is in no way indicative of The “purity” of the bride-to-be. Indeed, white is not accorded as a symbol of chastity, but of joy.


Wedding Update April 8, 2011

Filed under: postaday2011 — Sheena @ 7:34 pm
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I have been a busy little bee here lately. The wedding is only 57 days away! There is so much to do, so many people to meet, so much of everything. It becomes somewhat stressful. On a good note, we have officially book Famous Dave’s as our caterer! It feels good to finally have that booked. We also have The Dancing Bear Lodge for our rehearsal dinner. We are starting to get excited! We have almost booked all the major things for the wedding; however, we still need to find a cake, figure out what Phil and his groomsmen are wearing and pick out wedding rings


On top of the wedding stuff, Phil is graduating from UT next month (May 11)!  I have been fixing up his invitations and trying to get them ready to be put in the mail this week. I am so proud of him.


With all the concentration on the wedding I haven’t paid a lot of attention to myself. This week I have started my Wedding Preparation Plan (WPP): I purchased new tanning bed bulbs for my tanning bed and started getting my tan on. My legs are so white I think they would light up under a black light. I have been doing to whole facial mask and moisturizers and using my Crest WhiteStripes. I have begun eating healthy meals and running at least a mile in the mornings. My biggest alteration is that I have started wearing high heels. I am learning to walk in heels, were I’ll be able to walk in my wedding shoes without falling. Being a bride is a lot of work