Friday, May 29, 2015

Around the garden...

 Elizabeth, who knows what I like brought me this wire cage.
 A hosta I planted in a pot several years ago.  So pretty.
 Bait bucket o impatiens...
 Welcome Monarchs the milkweed is up!
 The first peony...I will always remember you Daddy.
 It's the little things that make me happy.
 Marigolds and blue salvia!
 Throw in a little sewing, pillowcases...

A thrifted Laura Ashley sheet and this unusual eyelet make a beautiful combination.

My  knees are healing, the garden is growing and  we are on the cusp of June.  Have a great weekend my friends and enjoy this beautiful day.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Weekend Update/Frozen Birthday Edition

Yes our sweet babygrand turned three and requested a Frozen party at Grandma and Grandpa's house. With a few weeks of gardening behind us, setting the stage for Sweet p's third birthday was fun.  We put up the canopy and hung dozens of snowflakes.  We ordered from our local "fancy pants" grocery,  pizza and chicken tenders... (Local girls, Mariano's) Grandma made a giant pan of mac and cheese, all of the birthday girl's favorite foods.
 Some colorful tablecloths, balloons and a birthday banner and we were ready for our girl.
 Penny was so excited, thrilled with all the little touches that I knew she would love.  After all she is MY granddaughter! ;-)
 I waited till the youngsters came to have them carry out all the chairs...I'm learning.
 Here she is in all her glory the Elsa Cake.  Snowflakes hide many imperfections.  Penny reaction was OMG, with a gasp!
 Penny dressed as her favorite character Elsa, she was radiant.

Let's just say the blue cake was not as well received as the chocolate foundation layers, my death by chocolate recipe with cream cheese frosting.  It was the perfect day, glorious weather and our closest family making it a  very happy day all around.

THEN...  As the party was wrapping up I thought it would be great to take down the tent as long as we had so much help.(we put the tent up with just the two of us)  I went to the garage to get the storage bag for the tent and a pair of scissors to cut down all the snowflakes.  As I was leaving the garage a shovel fell with the handle right at my feet, but my forward momentum was such that I tripped and landed hard on my knees on the concrete floor.  I was in so much pain I thought I wouldn't be able to get up.  I figured they would look for me eventually, but being stubborn, I got up.  Everything seemed to be working.  As soon as my daughter saw me she knew something was wrong.  She came up to the deck and put her arms around me,  Soon we were laughing and crying.

Fast forward to Monday.  The kids were all coming for Memorial Day.  I am just starting to feel like I can walk comfortably.  We go to the store, I get in the checkout line and my phone rings.  The kids spun out on a wet on ramp on the highway and blew out two tires.  Everyone was fine, shook up but OK.  We headed to pick them up while AAA took care of the car.  Thank God everyone was OK, they didn't get hit and we were close by. Seems like when it rains it pours. Oi Vey! We still managed to have a nice dinner and evening together and a uneventful ride home listening to the oldies. Love those kids so much!

Now it's Tuesday.  My left knee is Technicolor, my right is sore but not as bruised. I am doing stairs and walking.  Determined to keep going since walking to me is my exercise, my head clearing, mood lifting activity.  I can park my carcass with the best of them, but don't tell me to sit down...I get testy! Sorry honey.

A quiet and short week.  Let the rains come. The gardens look great and my work outdoors is almost done.
Thanks so much for stopping by and for all of your kind comments.

Enjoy this beautiful day!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Oh Dave, I miss you already...

My go to project, a corner to corner afghan, shawl?...time will tell.
I tried yesterday to make a heartfelt post about David Letterman's last show.  I couldn't download a photo...the quotes I wanted to use have disappeared from my Ipad.  Is this what life is like after Dave?
These last few weeks of goodbyes on the Late Show were sad and funny.  Norm McDonald's goodbye had me weeping, Julia Robert's kiss from Dave had me swooning.  I think the hard part is how young we all were when Dave started out...It's a shock to be watching someone forever young in our minds and hearts retire.
I am grateful for the many nights of pure joy, the great music(oh Paul), the silly guests and for Dave who changed the whole landscape of late night TV.  Sending out wishes for good health and happiness to Dave and his family.  I'll miss you Ace!
lemon chip cookies
 Baking for my service night, (that I never made it to...) and for my niece Tracy's birthday and for Penny's birthday.
 The chocolate foundation layers...
 The "dress" cake, and yes it is blue! Wish me luck on this one.
 Made Tracy (the Mom of our little bird and baby bug) a lemon blueberry bundt,
 Dressed it up with a glaze and sprinkles.
I couldn't even take a photo of a photo and get it to turn out right. My world is a little off kilter right now, the creature of habit that I am... Oh Dave, I miss you already!

Have a great holiday weekend my friends.  Drive safely, and enjoy this beautiful day.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Weekend Update, Proud Aunt Edition

A wet weekend, at least some was wet, most just threatening skies.  Things have sure greened up around here.  Some aerial views, not by drone but by second story window of our little piece of English Valley.  
 The lilacs are amazing and all the transplants are doing well.
 The last bit of back breaking work to finish before the big holiday weekend.
 This long legged girl will be soon turning three.  It's really high when Grandpa gives you a piggy back ride! .We had a great visit and attended the graduation party of cousin Amy.
Seems like yesterday when sweet Amy was three.  Now, she was just received a degree after 5 years of study to be a architect.  In my world of cherished nieces and nephews,  I am so proud to have had  shared so many happy hours with each of them.  To see them grow up to be kind, loving and still happy to see old Auntie Penny does my heart good! ...And SMART, did I mention smart? ;-)
This one, there are no words.  Can you believe she'll be Three!  The last 5 months since she's been close have been magical.  Our babygrand makes everything special.  A trip to the grocery with sweet p., a walk around the block are now filled with wonder and joy.  A Frozen party is in the planning , with a cake Grandma hopes will knock her socks off!

Thanks so much for stopping by and for your kind comments, they mean so much to me. Take care my friends and enjoy this beautiful day.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Circle Garden aka Penny's Garden

 Last year I started this circle garden.  I transplanted some pink cone flowers from out front and they took beautifully.  I just didn't follow through and complete the planting.  This went bad pretty quickly and it became mostly grass and weeds.  So, determined to follow through this time I cleared all the weeds and grass, no small undertaking.  A pitchfork, gloves and time was all it took.  I used four additional bags of topsoil, to fill in what I took out.
Beside the cone flowers were one Queen Anne's Lace and a single violet.  They are staying, just because.
I planted some seashell cosmos, four o'clocks, freesia bulbs, (I bought them at the dollar store, who knows if they'll grow, but their fragrance alone is worth a try.) and a few zinnias.

In the back, Sweet p.and Grandpa will plant  Russian sunflowers.  We did this a few years back with our little bird and it was a great success and so much fun.
Next to power wash the playhouse.  Seems we had a squatter this spring.  There is a paw print of a raccoon on the windowsill, and he left a muddy mess inside.  Cutting back all the trees around the playhouse was a tough job, so glad my hubby took over this hard on the hands task.  Things are really shaping up.  Pots planted...anxious to see how they fill out.  My lavender is the next place to get some TLC, a little grass seed to go down in some bare spots, then I think we are GO for summer!

Dreaming of sunflowers that reach for the sky... Enjoy this beautiful day.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

A Pond No More

Plenty of sweat, some aching bones, ten bags of top soil, 4 bags of mulch and a garbage picked birdbath... Here is the new garden where the pond was was.  I used the flagstone from the pond to keep the mulch from wandering into the lawn.  If you peek into the background you can see I barely made a dent in the Annabelle, borrowing a few shoots for this new part of my garden.   There are now Annabelle and Endless Summer hydrangeas, Russian Sage, 2 rose bushes, coreopsis, bleeding hearts and tulips.  I keep looking at it from the windows with satisfaction. Thanks to my partner in gardening and life for making another dream a reality.

Thanks for stopping by.  Enjoy this beautiful day.


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Tulips, Lilacs and Wine

This Spring has been different.  Eighty degrees one day fifty the next.  The good thing has been that the warmth that makes the flowers bloom is tempered by the cool temperatures that keep the blossoms fresh longer.  These tulips were slow to pop, but I've enjoyed them for days.
 Same with the lilacs.  The warmth makes them bloom and sends the fragrance wafting through the air.
 This is week three enjoying the blooms because of the cool temps.
 The back view of my arbor.  We still haven't replaced this leaning plastic one, but in spring even the leaning arbor looks quaint and lovely.
 This is the bacopa basket I bought from our club's sale.  It got on the list because it's one of my favorites with tiny white flowers all summer.
 I love white in the garden, and pinks, and blues, yellows even orange marigolds!
While I was working the sale on Saturday, my sweetheart was buying me this bottle tree.  We are not drinkers, so it might take a while to fill this, but I love when the sunlight hits the colored bottles.  That's the place where the pond used to be, all filled in ready for planting.  That's my job this week!

Thanks for stopping by and for your kind comments.  Enjoy this beautiful day!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Forget Me Not/Weekend Update

They popped up again, as if to say, forget me not.  As it was Mother's Day on Sunday, I cannot forget to mention my Mother.  I had her for just 30 of my years, and have spent 30 years without her.  I miss her more today than I did back then, not fully appreciating what life without her would be. Mother's Day is always bittersweet for me. Miss you Mom.

This weekend was our annual plant sale for our club.  We work with a local supplier and take orders for a month with pick up the Saturday before Mother's Day.  We sold over 100 hanging baskets and 300 geraniums and impatiens.  We unloaded the truck on Friday.  The temperature was in the 80's and we were sweating as we sorted.  We had two men helping, one little and one big and sweet Judy and myself to take off 5 carts of plants.  My hands are still sore from grabbing all those large brown paper covered hanging baskets/

 The flowers are always so beautiful...we had so many varieties from begonias and bacopa, fuchsia and lantana and the unpronounceable calibrachio...we finally started calling it cowabunga!
 These were all individual plants lining the driveway...My hardworking and oh so wonderful guild sisters.
 Red was a popular color for geraniums.
This is Jane, she organized all our orders, what a help that was. We were setting up at 8am and done by 11! My guild sisters got the job done and a nice profit for our club, which in turn supports all of our service projects.  I am so happy when these events are over!

My Mother's day included a visit to the cemetery, making a large pot of chicken soup, a crock pot of turkey meatballs, and visits from all the kids, including a face time with Mike and Amanda.  Our Sweet p. jumped into my arms and hugged me for a long time when they came to call.  Kris and Doug were happy to have a couple of quiet moments while Grandpa and I played, danced, swung and pretended with our sunshine girl!
Penny even convinced Grandpa that she would stay on the deck since the yard was so muddy.  When I looked out and saw them both on the grass with Penny running around the yard, just made my heart swell with love for them both!  This little one is like a deer, she needs to run, in fact as they were leaving Penny ran a few laps around the tree out front, and we had to catch her to put her into the car.  So much fun...and the goodbye hugs and kisses... ( Penny wanted to stay, but when I told her that I had packed up some soup for home she was finally convinced)  Kris sent me a text from the car, Penny said, "I love Grandma, she's the best."
Thank you Kris, Doug, Penny, Jon Jon and Charlotte, Mike and Amanda for making me feel so loved.  My sweetheart too...  I started the day with him saying, thanks for being the mother of my children!  Sigh... Happy Mother's Day to all!

Enjoy this beautiful day.