28 May, 2009

today i dusted.

27 May, 2009

long weekend/gloomy morning

i left friday for iowa. i left my camera home. for those of you who need illustrations to keep your attention you can quit now - no hard feelings. i understand.

for the rest of you - i started at my sister andrea's: love what she and mike are doing/have done to the house. such beautiful work. naphtali and aidan arrived late and we had a fun morning with a kitten, trampoline, sunshine, conversation, garden plans, dog baths and a car washing (thanks again!). she left for work. we (naphtali, aidan and i)went to the cemetery in hampton and then on to fort dodge. more visiting. another late night. sunshine again the next morning, actually it was a lovely spring morning. we did a few outside projects for this grandma, who then left for des moines. we went to the cemetery and on to visit the other grandma. another late night.
the trip home was uneventful. tim had been busy here. i came back with a sore throat which quickly blossomed into a full head cold and spent much of yesterday on the couch. it had rained several times over the weekend,
all day tuesday and should again shortly.
my iris are in full bloom.

everything is green and vibrant.
i work at noon......
the columbine are especially lovely this year. they need some sunshine to show their best in a picture.

21 May, 2009

happy birthday!!

tomorrow will find me on the road so i want to get birthday greetings on their way to kate.

as usual i find my stock of pictures is woefully lacking. we are looking forward to a quick rendezvous with jacob and kate in omaha the first week in june. i will get pictures. head shots.

i'll add congratulations to kate for her graduation this week from northeast(south west?)university. (how can a state as small as connecticut have so many particular directions?) she's worked hard, held good grades all through the process and we're very proud of her.

in the interest of equal press i'll note that james has also graduated from carlson in the last week. we'd like to recognize his hard work and long hours - congrats, james.

18 May, 2009

on a happier note

on a happier note - one of the mystery plants has been identified. i have lovely aliums in 2 places.
the snowball bushes have never looked healthier.tim and i both took it easy this weekend. the wind had stopped blowing, the sun was shining but not hot. i sat outside and did some reading. he watched golf. we walked charlie, went for a bike ride. loafed, napped, enjoyed.

the alium are lovely. i have iris blooming and the anemone are about to open with columbine not far behind them.

i could have cried

last summer the city announced it would be paving the small connector street on our north, along with several others. we attended meetings etc, let it be known that we were not in favor of this project. keep in mind there is a big difference between being reasonable and being happy. this spring they started. we had a visit from the city manager to talk about our trees. lss - they all had to come down. 8:00 the next morning the crew was already at work.
even though you know something is going to happen and you know the outcome will be unpleasant you're still somewhat unprepared for that first glimpse of the final reality.

i could have cried when i came home from work that night. 5 huge white pines - gone.
3 scrubberish pines - gone. a big hardwood - gone. one of the features that attracted us to this property in the first place - gone. any sense of privacy we enjoyed - gone. our buffer from the north wind, traffic noise, lights, exhaust fumes - gone. a variety of birds nesting in these trees - gone.
and we have the privilege of paying for it all - for the NEXT TEN YEARS.

15 May, 2009

national nursing home week

hilltop - a local nursing home - recently built a new planter by their entrance .
they asked the garden club to please come and plant it for national nursing home week. we heard those lovely words - money is no problem. lovely, lovely words. so wednesday morning found us busy with zinnia, salvia, petunia and day lilies from the ffa greenhouse. the ffa kids do a great job each year. they raise poinsettia for sale in december and offer sod and the greenhouse through the spring.

we had an appreciative audience.

today we're invited to join them for lunch. how fun.

14 May, 2009

loose ends

this is my pathway. i still have to sink those last few bricks but in my mind it is done.

at this time last year most of this space was grass. the bed along the wall existed but it was a narrow space, straight and cramped. i dug out the grass myself. created the path. hauled the dirt for the middle and have now laid the brick. tim offered to level the last few but i thanked him and turned him down - i want all the bragging rights on this one.
there were peony along the wall with that rock ledge holding a bush of some sort which we replaced with a redtwig dogwood. i had added astilbe, columbine, anemone, daylilies, daffodils, alium (the mystery plant!),iris and coral bells. this year from marilyn's garden i've added ladies mantle, dianthus, plumaneria, cranesbill, varigated iris, icantha, along with lavendar and daisies. i can't wait for everything to fill in.

09 May, 2009

happy mother's day

hope you have a lovely day.

taking a break

my intention is for this to be brief. we'll see. i'm in the midst of laundry and i have wallpaper yet to hang tonight but needed a breather and why sit and stare at the walls if i can be productive for another 15 minute segment of my day. it's been a very full week. weeding and planting and projects and work and busybusybusy.
on tuesday the garden club went to a farm 13 miles from gothenburg, cozad and calloway. marilyn mcneal is a retired teacher, master gardener,
farm wife and general all-around nice lady. i see her regularly at the library. last summer we went up (out?)(over?) to look at her gardens and she invited us to come back this spring because she was planning to do some splitting and we could help her out by taking the extras. a very generous offer when you do the math...(part of the math that day included several ages revealed to a general chorus of oh! you can't be etc. marilyn is 77. and the excepting myself - the youngest garden clubber is - wait for it- 68. guess who manned the shovel and did all the lifting??
the math - 8 of us went to marilyn's. i came home with 10 different plants, about the average haul, some large enough to split again. we filled 2 trunks and had some on our laps. i got mine into the ground just before it rained that day.

and that night there was the episode with the chair. $10 bought this chair back in sioux falls and it will no doubt be the best quality chair we will ever own. it's comfortable but awkward to move - the back being rounded and no legs to hold on to -and no there are no 'before' pictures because i didn't think there would be a story to tell until we were already at this point. at what point, you ask?? the point where after getting stuck at the top of the stairs for the third time.... let me back up. the chair got wet during our recent water-in-the-basement episode. this is 'cleanup' week in gothenburg and we decided it was the perfect opportunity to get rid of the chair for free. borrowed a pickup. we're all set.
the chair is heavy. heavy and it has to be lifted higher than the railings. and make a turn at the top of the steps. and we took it there 3 times.

we decided to cut it in 2. the fabric wouldn't tear. the sawsall blade vibrated on the surface. we're laughing. breathing hard. and trying to make a dent in this chair from hell. we found a metal strip that had interfered with the sawsall. the wood! the springs! the padding! we could not demolish that chair!! it has a round swivel base probably an inch thick. at one point tim warned me, as he positioned the pry bar, that "ball bearings would scatter all over the floor" as he began to push. nothing budged! like i said, the best piece of furniture we ever owned!!
we eventually got it in 2 pieces that we could handle, up the stairs, into the truck, over to the dumpsters and out of our lives!!

i'm going to hang wallpaper. the rest of the week will follow soon.

04 May, 2009


we finally had a decent day - one that i was actually home to enjoy - on saturday. things are growing. it seems like you can measure growth from one day to the next. we've had rain and the colors are simply popping!!
these tulpis are under the mailbox and the lovliest shade of pink. i'll try to get a better picture in tomorrow.

this is one of my mystery plants. i can't wait for it to open.

i spent a lot of time weeding on saturday but my big project was this:
last spring i dug out another piece of yard making a flower bed in the center and preparing a horseshoe shaped path. we couldn't decide on the material for the path so i covered it with newspaper and landscaping fabric and let it sit. it's now brick. or will be by the end of the week. it started raining in the late afternoon and all day sunday. i have about 10 rows to finish. unfortunately, (you were waiting for an unfortunately weren't you?) as we were using old brick already around the house - we were short. the last 10 rows, remember? not too much of a problem.
knowing they would, at a minimum, look new we knew that i would have to pull old bricks from random spots and fill in with the new. extra work but do-able. when i looked at the brick tim returned with the next day i could have cried. or cursed. they are about an inch taller than what we have. i not only have to pull 'a' random brick, i have to pull 3 or 4 to dig a deeper spot for the new one to fit level. i could have cried. and may yet. and yes - it was all they had. tomorrow the garden club is going out to the home of a friend - a master gardener- who has graciously offered to share some of her splits with us. marilyn has incredible plants and i'm planning to fill spots in my beds around the new(and it is pretty cool) brick path with some shade plants.....