Sunday, July 20, 2014

And Grow She Will...

My thought is, good thing the tomatoes will turn red, in time, because I would never be able to find them in the thick growth which is set before me. There are many beautiful little blooms just getting ready to pop and give us some juicy Roma's. We have been using the dill on our salmon steaks, and the beautiful delicate, edible flowerettes are like lace umbrellas. The basil, well, I am inches away from making pesto, and our summer salads have been graced w/ the freshness of all 4 varieties. It is just mid-July....

I wish you could smell the aroma wafting off of all these plants...

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

Dream job, hauling over sized Dahlia' pink too boot!!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

 Late afternoon walk around the lake @ The Broadmoor...

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

or, Queen Anne's Lace

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Build it, And They Will Come...

4 varieties of basil, some Italian oregano & sage..
4 weeks ago..
Roma's, growing, flowering, dill & Italian oregano, flat leaf parsley..
4 weeks ago..
Purple, Thai, sweet and Greek basil...staked for security..
Amazing growth!!!
4 weeks ago..
Whoops, wrong quote. The 'Field of Dreams' quote just feels fitting. More like plant it in a sunny spot, water, fertilize every 2 weeks, hand out some serious TLC, and they will grow! It has been close to 1 month since we put this years' garden together. The first week is very telling. Some of the basil immediately keeled over. Then, there were some spots which needed filling in. So, now I have Italian oregano, dill (you can never have too much fresh dill), and thyme. The tomato plants are flowering, some fuller than others. But the initial concerns are now over (short of the hail we had last week...there will be more before the Summer is over...I would wager money on that!). Some of the bamboo stakes are in place, and I will continue to rotate and add them as the need presents itself. The basil is already making its way into our food. It cannot be overstated how fresh herbs and veggies straight from the garden to the plate is so potent in aroma and flavor. So, here are the comparison pics, from day one, to almost 30 days later!!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

A Little Music for Wednesday...

George Benson
Original Studio Version, 1976
The real fun starts @ 4:30
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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

Happy 26th Anniversary to 'Us'!!!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

After the Storm, Part ll (For Suzanne)

 It happened again. It is going to happen again. It was Friday, June 6. There were storms in the afternoon. We decided to go for a late afternoon/early evening drive through and around the Black Forrest (which is just a few miles North of where we live). The 'after the storm' skies are almost unbelievable...but, again, what a gift for one w/ camera in hand!!

 'When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; What is man, that thou art mindful of him?..'
Psalm 8:3-4

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

2014 Garden, For Joy!!

VintageGardenArt, hand pressed vintage silver plate flatware, on Etsy
4 varieties of basil..
Roma tomatoes and flat leaf parsley..
I don't get manicures. Just like the gal in the Vistaprint commercials, who owns a greenhouse, no point. I like to play in the dirt too much. Even though I own garden gloves, I often do not wear them, as I love the feel of the earth. I did a show @ a garden center this past November, and made a trade w/ Julie, from VintageGardenArt; one of her vintage hand pressed silver plate flatware spoons for one of my cards. I picked 'Dirty Girl', w/ a giggle, knowing it was headed straight for one of my house plants, later to be moved to the garden. It has found its rightful place next to one of the purple basil plants. Good contrast, I thought!

I kept it simple. 4 varieties of basil. Sweet, Thai, Purple and Greek. The small leaf basil did not make the cut this year, too woody. I planted Roma tomatoes and flat leaf parsley. I can still hear my old neighbor, Carole, from Rhode Island, telling me I had to space the tomato plants further apart. Given the 4'x4' space I have, w/ each of the raised garden beds, I did my best to space them and give them enough height from the soil for the roots to grow down. There is still room for more, 'I'm not sure yet', herbs or plants. We'll see. The Boys helped me this year w/ all the heavy lifting (The Lilley Community Garden). Many cubits of potting soil, mixed w/ many cubits of garden soil, mixed w/ compost. Not to mention the earthworms, night crawlers. All 36 of them, well, now, 35, one went the wrong way, and...

So, here's to a great harvest of a ton of basil for summer salads and 'Amy's Famous Pesto', some hearty, juicy Roma's for sauce and summer salads as well. I especially look forward to the low low hmmmmmmm of the bees!

'Awake, O north wind, And come, wind of the south; Make my garden breathe out fragrance, Let its spices be wafted abroad...
Song of Songs 4:16

post script: I accidentally deleted the original post, twice (what's up w/ blogspot today????), hopefully this re-post still paints the picture!!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

"Try to be a rainbow in someone's cloud."

"My great hope is to laugh as much as I cry; to get my work done and try to love somebody and have the courage to accept the love in return."

April 4, 1928-May 28, 2014

Sunday, May 25, 2014

After the Storms...Those Skies!!!

These days a good old fashioned Spring thunderstorm storm in Colorado, has turned into a weather event. Alarms going off, flash flood warnings and watches...all from the gi-nomous burn scars from the Waldo Canyon of 2012 fire, mentioned in the previous post, and the Black Forrest fire of last year. The mountain scar no longer retains water and as a result all the 'normal' flow of water which was soaked into the mountain, now runs down the mountain, bringing with it anything in its path. Mitigating has been worked on all year to help curb the flooding, but it has only been a year and there is still more work to do. We took a long afternoon drive yesterday, as the skies were in 'after the storm mode'! Everywhere, every glance, every turn of the head was another gorgeous scene of cloud formations, dark threatening skies, big big landscapes, as far as the eye could see. And, yes, the cows were lying down, as it did thunder and lightning later that evening...torrential. I took 33 pictures, deleted a few, did some editing on others. These were all taken within 1 hour in the late afternoon north of Colorado Springs!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

From Sylvia's House, Waldo Canyon Almost 2 Years Later...

Everything around their house was torched by the Waldo Canyon fire. The 346 homes which were burned to ash, many in the Mountain Shadows neighborhood, were around her. The 2 people who perished in the blaze, were in the house down the hill. Sylvia and her husband's house was not touched. A couple of pieces of outdoor furniture were scorched, a couple of windows blew out, but miracle of miracles, their house stood. Jimmy and I spent the afternoon w/ Sylvia yesterday. Now, it is close to 2 years after the fires. Here is a reminder of the day the fire exploded over the mountain into the Mountain Shadows neighborhood:

'On June 26, 2012, Colorado Springs experienced a record high temperature of 101 °F (38 °C), which aided the fire's rapid expansion. By 3:45 p.m. strong winds following a dry thunderstorm west of the blaze caused the fire to jump the containment line on Rampart Range Road and enter into Queen's Canyon. At 4:21 p.m., smoke billowed in the distance and Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach interrupted a news conference with an evacuation order. The fire crested Queen's Canyon and winds from the west nearing 65 mph gusts (the cyclonic winds of the collapsing pyrocumulus cloud from the fire storm) pushed the fire down the slope and into the Mountain Shadows, Oak Valley Ranch, and Peregrine neighborhoods. By late afternoon and evening, multiple structures were burned including the Flying W Ranch, a Colorado Springs landmark built in 1953. Within the time span of twelve hours, 346 homes in western Colorado Springs had burned to the ground, and hundreds more were reported as damaged by fire and smoke.'

We literally saw the fire jump over the range that day, and by evening, neighbors had gathered @ the end of our street, w/ a powerful telescope and we watched homes burn. It was horrifying. By the time the fire was contained, over 18,000 acres or 29 square miles had burned. As far as the eye could see. Now, almost 2 years later, we stood on Sylvia's deck and looked @ our house, which is 27 minutes away. If you remember, we had a birds eye view, although at the time, I did not understand the terrain or the distance. The fire was so enormous, it felt like it was as close as the Black Forest fire actually was. The amazing thing, the wonderful thing, is that nature comes back. Yes, the reminder is looking @ the charred mountain, daily, and worth repeating, as far as the eye can see. For those who live in the neighborhoods, many of whom have re-built, clearly, it is much more personal. It is the trees and bushes which still stand blackened, charred. They will never come back. But, the mountain is green now, in parts, and trees are being re-planted. Even yesterday, Sylvia was having dead trees pulled out, and 7 new trees planted.

We ache for the families near San Diego. We understand all too well the fear and the loss. Those feelings, I do not think will ever go away. But, looking @ the hillside near Sylvia's house, I am filled w/ enormous hope and awe. The resilience of the human spirit to re-build and nature saying, I'll be back, just is the proof of the pudding!
Looking West to a small, yet huge portion of the burn scar, with new trees just planted yesterday!
Looking South
Down the hill a closer view
Such a contrast of the charred remains and the life bursting forth from the Earth!
An amazing and beautiful landscape!

 'There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens:

   a time to be born and a time to die,
    a time to plant and a time to uproot,
   a time to kill and a time to heal,
    a time to tear down and a time to build, 

   a time to weep and a time to laugh,
    a time to mourn and a time to dance,
    a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them..'
Ecclesiastes 3: 1-5

Saturday, May 10, 2014

'Bunny's'...Many Bunny's!!

Mom and Me...
'Daisie Bunnykins', Doulton & Co.

Made in Italy
Tureen or planter
Made in France with Daisie...
It was bound to happen. Mom's nick name was 'Bunny'. It started innocently enough. There was that very first bunny with the cotton coming out of it's, well, bottom...and we used it, I remember. Then it started. They began to multiply, as bunnies do. Before anyone knew it there were bunnies everywhere. Mom had to send out an executive order,  'NO MORE BUNNIES!!'

The very first bunny, (photo) Mom gave to me because she said it reminded her of 'us'. She cried. I cried. The pics of the bunnies are of just a few, which I treasure. I am always looking at 'bunny anything'. You would be surprised @ all the merchandise out there w/ Mom's name on it. I have, so far, refrained from starting the reproduction cycle all over again...whew!! When she died, we distributed some of the bunnies to relatives and close friends. Everyone loved receiving them, as they knew that they were getting a treasured piece of her, and each person expressed how precious, it meant so much. From Steuben glass, to inexpensive glass, to wood and metal (one is a coin bank which Edward has), to porcelain, to Limoges, made in Italy, and back to France, to Rosenthal, ceramic and soapstone, and on and on and on! So, on this 2nd Mother's Day without her, I honor and treasure her memory...'Bunny's....Many Bunny's!!'