251 Idyll (the next quarter of a thousand).....

david_5311(Z 5b/6a SE Mich)January 26, 2006

Wow, how unheard of is it for a man to be posting the beginning of an idyll? Has it ever happened before? Appropriate that it should be the beginning of the next quartile of a thousand. Time to loosen things up, right?

When life gets simpler, I have so much to tell y'all. What it was like to sell my garden, to another "gardener" -- (advice: sell it to a non-gardener. More later). What it has been like to come out. In every part of your life. To get divorced. To rediscover life. And gardening. What an incredible journey this past year.

But now, I have a question. As I get re-involved with gardening and these wonderful forums, what do people think about all these new policies of I village? Of the copyright issues? Of posting pictures? Perhaps you all have discussed this and I just missed it, looking for pictures mainly. It seems I see fewer of them>

But are you all going to stop posting pictures?

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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Hi there David, great to hear from you and looking forward to hearing more from you and what is going on in your life right now.

The new IVillage policies have been discussed quite a bit but the gist of things is that the pop-up adds are a huge pain in the neck for some of us and some of us, myself included, have to log on EVERY time we want to post. A pain.

I'm still mulling over the posting pics thing here. I really get heartburn with IVillage stating that they can use any of your images without your permission to do what they want with including to generate revenue. In other words even if they are just covering themselves with the wording and even though I understand that any time you post a pic on the web you are essentially 'giving' the image away, I find it offensive that they are saying you are giving away your rights to your images when you post them. So I'm not saying that I'm never going to put up garden pics again but I will reduce the quality of the images so that they can't be used and I won't ever post pics of artwork here again.

OK time to get to the gym for the day. Hello to everyone I'll stop by later to comment further.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 8:02AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)


Yay, David is back-hopefully for good! I'm looking forward to hearing stories of your "adventures", especially about what it was like to sell your previous garden. And of course your new life.

David the new iVillage policies have been discussed ad nauseum on alot of the regular forums as well as the suggestions and comments forum. Obviously there are many opinions and interpretations. Personally I will still post pictures here. Mine were never at a usuable resolution and I'm no professional photographer. Some new boards have been formed and many of us here have been checking them out. One in particular seems to have hit the radar more than others, TheGardenForums.org. As you and I have discussed in the past, there really aren't alot of alternatives to GW with much in the way of horticultural discussions. Maybe that will change now but only time will tell.

So much more to say but no time this morning. Gotta run.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 8:22AM
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David - this is indeed a first, but a very welcome one. We'll look forward to hearing more of your experiences - very different from any or ours I'm sure. It sounds as though they have led you to a wonderful place - rediscovering life and the garden.

I think we generally agree that the new iVillage terms stink, but many of our group still like this format the best. Pop-ups and logging in vary from person to person, but have driven a couple of regulars away. I had to change my user name, but since then have been add free. I'm with Sue on the photo issue. I discussed the new terms with DH who has been involved with legal wrangles over photography copyright (its a very hot topic amongst professionals). I've come to realize that anything posted on a forum is "out there" and that iVillage are claiming legal rights to what goes on illegally just about anywhere, we are simply not always aware the extent.

I have a free afternoon today with work in the AM only. I'm planning to see an Exhibition of photos at the Geroge Eastman House. More later.

Have a good day


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 8:36AM
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wendy2(zone 6 MA)

Good morning!

Ahhh... kids are in school, one 1/2 hour of quiet before I have to hit the road today. It was 17 degrees here this AM, but the sun is out (is there a degree symbol on the keyboard somewhere that I am missing?) We are supposed to be in the 50's tomorrow; what a change! I hope some of this lovely snow cover stays though, for the plants. No more snowy mornings though, the commute is a drag!

T - congratulations! Twins will be a lot of fun - one for each hand. Do you know yet if they are identical or fraternal? My FIL is a fraternal twin; and my son plays with identical twin boys who look very much alike, but I can tell them apart if they stand still, and next to each other, long enough.

Brenda, glad your sister did not have a heart attack, but the other problem sounds serious enough. A wake-up call for her, hopefully she can manage it with medication and changing her diet.

Honey, good to hear that Bullet is improving. How worrisome it must be when they are ill and can't even vocalize what they need. I don't have pets myself, but I know how much you pet owners love your furbies.

Eden, my role for breakfast on the weekdays is more of a supervisory one. DS insists on a hot breakfast, cold cereal is nothing more than a side dish to him. He is fond of Eggo waffles, and we tried the new Eggo pancakes this week, those are OK too. He can put them into the toaster or micro himself, but I feel I need to be close by because his curious mind and impulsive nature could turn breakfast into a science experiment at any moment. He also likes me to cut the Eggos for him, he claims that he has trouble staying on the lines. DD needs supervision to make sure she does eat, she is not a breakfast person.

Eden, what's on your list for Singing Springs? I've been studying that catalog closely, some of their coleus and cuphea look promising, and the Colocasia 'Nancy's revenge' looks outstanding.

Martie, I'll be making my way back to Logees sometime between now and May; I keep thinking of things I should have bought; especially a certain dark purple Passiflora...better get there before Monique gets the last one...hehehe

David, nice to meet you. You don't know me, I started posting here last summer. I've seen your photos in the Gallery and they are wonderful. That must be the garden you've now sold? Are you starting over at a new place?

As for me personally, the IVillage statement that they can profit from pictures does not bother me, I'm a point-and-shoot kind of girl, still in the learning stages. Nobody would want my pics. I feel for those people who have pictures of professional quality and are worried about posting them. I love seeing the pictures, that is actually what drew me this forum last summer...what is the phrase Cynthia coined - "Lurker Photo Junkie" or something like that. If I were a garden writer I would not post here either. It is sad that a lot of creative people are being driven away be corporate greed.

"The next quartile of a thousand" - sounds very poetic. Can we have a quick retrospective for those like me who have not always been here? How did the Idylls get started? Where did the name come from? Who were the founding members? Inquiring minds want to know!

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 8:39AM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Hey, Wendy - that's a great question -- and perhaps very timely since we're now into that new quartile of a thousand (sounds like something w/ a lot of longevity - so we should keep it going). Who started the first Idyll?

Hi, David - great to hear from you -- and we all look forward to hearing about your new adventures - gardening and otherwise! You probably got the "shortened" versions here of what's been going on for about the last 3 weeks at GW -- much outrage, uproad, fear, etc. -- it remains to be seen how much of these changes will be way, way worse.

I did a test yesterday and logged out -- I did then get pop-ups - but I confess they werent as offensive or long and lingering as some ads I've gotten on cnn or yahoo or other places - after a bit I could ignore them ... - but myabe we all have different tolerance levels. I grant you, seeing cookie ads or 99 cent hamburgers wasnt what I expected for a garden site but still -- anyhoo, I guess we all have to make our own choices - at present Im most comfortable here. The other TGF site is promising but as Sue pointed out pretty much at the "oo & aah" stage.

Yeona - was it you who pointed out the info re not exercising for 2 weeks after having the flu due to possible serious complications? That is definitely something I've never heard -- wow -- you'd think it would be more publicized. Very handy knowledge to have.

It's crispy cold here in the metro DC area - but sunny so Im not complaining. Gotta dig into the piles left from me being out yesterday.

Sounds like everyone is turning to the latest fashion of "tropical" gardens here -- I look forward to hearing what people get - Im not there this year I dont think - my garden is way too small -- I just need to get some more winter/ evergreen stuff going (giving up precious space of perennials). Decisions, decisions....


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 9:08AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Saucy, it was Saucy who started the first idyll. She came to the idyllunion this summer then vanished again. Has anybody heard from her?


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 9:16AM
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I miss Saucy!

And NO.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 9:20AM
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I don't have alot of time this morning but just wanted to jump in and say hi to David. It's good to hear from you and I'm so happy to hear that things are going well. I look forward to hearing about your plans for your new life and garden. Hope you're back here for good. You were missed.

As for the changes going on around here, there's been alot of discussion and exploration of other boards but this is still the place I like best. The thing that could eventually drive me away is if the ads get too bad. I'm not really concerned with ivillage stealing any of my fabulous photos, lol.

Have a great Friday everyone. I've gotta run. I'll try to get back later.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 9:26AM
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Good morning!

I enjoyed meeting Saucy this summer also and was very sorry when she wasn't back posting after the gathering. I'd love it if she could find the time to come and visit!

On the babies, what else is forefront in my mind? ;o) They are fraternal not identical and the kids are planning on finding out gender(s) if it is apparent on future ultrasounds. Jamie is my grandson and he is named after my hubby but it is too confusing to have two James...or two guys named Jim so he is usually Jamie or little James. I've not shared my kids' names here and probably won't....they'll remain just 'daughters with numbers'.

What is everyone up to today? I had a couple of delivery snafus yesterday.....one thing arrived that I didn't order (a repeat of an order I placed in December---don't know if they put me on automatic re-order or ?...so that has to be straightened out) and one thing that I ordered for my quilting frame turned out to be the wrong piece so I am waiting to hear how that will be remedied. I dislike having to sit at home and wait for call backs. But I'll sit and do some sewing while waiting. Deanne's asked a couple times what I'm working on and I've not meant to ignore her question....I've just been lax about taking a picture to share. I'll try to motivate myself to do that today. Aren'tcha thrilled? ha!

I know, I'm boring! lol Oh well......reading me just makes all the rest of you sound exciting and industrious, so my mundane & boring life 'is a good thing'!

More coffee please!

T. :o)

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 10:07AM
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Talking about twins looking freakily alike, I have to share something that my son told me recently. His dad is an identical twin. My kids dad hasnÂt spent much time with them after the divorce because he started a new family.(She has now left him too, but thatÂs another story) Anyway he and DD did go to the Christmas gathering of their dadÂs family. He told me that several times he wasnÂt sure which one was his dad, that he had to look at what they were wearing to remind him. I actually thought that was a sad comment about the amount of time that their dad has spent with them in the last 12 years.

Honey, IÂm happy to hear that things are looking up for Bullet. I can tell that he is very important to you both.

Babs, what a fun picture. I just love the pictures you take of your boys. Mine were always just "stand there while mom takes your picture" LOL I do have lots of pictures of them though.

Yeona, good to hear from you again. Thinking of you and both of your sisters.

Eden, I like the idea of having white lights in your trees. Nice touch for winter interest.

Cindy, feel better quickly.

Deanne, do you bookmark directly to the main conversations page instead of the main page? Once I did that I didnÂt have to log in anymore. I probably explained it a little better on the last thread if you are interested.

David, nice to have you back. I have always enjoyed your gardens and look forward to hearing more from you and seeing the development of your new garden.

I will continue to share pictures and am not worried about anyone wanting them. Actually, I would probably be flattered if anyone thought mine were worth trying to profit from. I have seen so much great photography on these forums and other places on the web that I know IÂm not a contender.

We had a great time watching Kenzie at her swimming lesson last night. They had this slide that was about 6Âwide. The instructor would put her at the top and DD would catch her (no fear in that child) She kept watching the kids going down the other end of the slide that you went under a shower of water on the way down. The instructor put her on that side and she loved it. She doesnÂt mind water in her face at all.

Another fabulous day here and IÂve wondered too how to make the degree sign. It is supposed to 48° today. The way I got this one is that I type my messages in Word. You go to insert and then symbol. There are lots of special characters there.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 10:31AM
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janie_on(z6a Ontario)

Morning..just went and posted on the other site and it looks easy to use...I will try to keep up with both. Yeah, we'll see how that goes..LOL

Nice to see you around David!

T - congratulations! Twins will be a lot of fun and work!! But that is awesome

Brad and I had a wonderful stay at Niagara Falls last weekend.the room was fantastic! A couple of shots from our 38th floor windowyou can see both the US and Canadian falls...

ok have to go work on the kids computersee if I can get it running!!!


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 11:12AM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Another morning with a gorgeous sunset! The day may hold promise yet. I just wish I didn't feel like I'm coming down witht he stomach bug that been's floating around here. I will think positive and banish this bug from my life!

David, how fun that you got to start an idyll. I'd love to hear the sorry of your house sale and your new life when you have the time. I'm sure you can imagine that many of us have many questions! It's good to "hear" you sounding positive and upbeat again, and it will be great to hear how your new garden is evolving.

I'm in the group who is not worried about the photo posting issues, because no one is going to make a dime off my photos! But Deanne makes her living from this and GB is getting way too good with her photos. I was doing some "creative writing" on the garden writers forum, but I won't do that any more. I'm not going to give away my creative efforts in that manner. I've been hanging at the new forum a bit and it's fun to watch it grow and develop.

Well, my computer is trying to freeze up a bit, so I'm going to post this and come back later. Everyone have a great day!

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 11:35AM
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honey_mi(Z5 MI)

Drive by. I'm reading and lurking. Hi David!!! Welcome back. You've really been missed.

Congrats, T, on the upcoming blessed event! I can't believe my tease was so close to the mark! I know you have to be "over the moon" with excitement.

Thanks, everyone, for the kind thots about Bullet. This am I couldn't find him and feared the worst. Cats hide when they're not feeling well. Turns out, he was waiting patiently for me to find him -- he locked himself in my closet! He hasn't done that in quite awhile. For a mouthy kitty, I wish he'd answer when I called him, lol.

Dealing with a sick animal has put me woefully behind on projects. And once I sit down here, I lose incentive. All I want to do is play with you guys! So before I get comfortable, I'm off to the treadmill and then the drapes.

Have a great day everyone! TTYL

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 11:43AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Evening all,

Well, Doug and I are going to a very ritzy party in Boston this weekend at one of the harbor hotels and I decided to do the girly nails thing and had a set of nails put on this afternoon. Im now trying to type with these foreign objects on my fingertips. The things we do for beauty. I must admit, they look pretty swell with the bling. Had them painted a lovely dark burgundy metallic color that matches my lipstick. Ill be wearing that black beaded dress I bought to wear to my class reunion that I decided not to wear to my class reunion because it was just a bit too dressy. Well, it was sleeveless and I needed something and am not partial to dealing with a shawl at a cocktail/dinner party so found a cute little shrug that looks great with the dress. Got the hose, shoes, and all the other paraphernalia to go so am actually ready. I cant believe I dont need to do an emergency shopping trip tomorrow. LOL

Honey, it sounds like Bullet is doing OK for now. Ive been thinking of you guys a lot. I sure hope he continues to do well.

Now, V, "another morning with a gorgeous sunset!" Did you have your coffee yet when you posted that? I normally only see sunsets in the evening. ROTFLOL

Jane, awesome pics of the falls. Weve not been there in a very long time and I think Id like to mosey out that way again. They sure are impressive. Can you imagine what they were like before man interfered with the water flow!

Michelle, yes I do but I still have to log in. ~~ How fun that Kenzie loves the water and great that she is already having swimming lessons. ~~ How sad that your X has seen so little of his children. I agree with you that is pretty sad.

T yes indeed, Im interested that you will take a pic of your latest quilting project. I always wanted to get into quilting but never found the time so have to enjoy other fabric artists work.

And yes everyone, I surely do miss Saucy!!! Where in the heck has she gotten to. I sure wish shed let us know how she is doing and maybe join our Feb. party. Speaking of which, I CANT wait!!! Im so in need of a party right now. I really wish everyone could join us.

Cindy, after seeing Sues and Moniques gardens I began re-thinking my borders and have begun adding evergreens and small shrubs here and there and am absolutely loving the changes. Even though I have to give up valuable perennial space to them Ive decided that design wise it is more than worth it. My driveway garden is my experimental area and Ive loved how it is developing.

Hi Mary, Ive been thinking of you lately and am wondering if you are nearby a small airport should Doug feel like taking a flying trip. He asked me yesterday if I wanted to go anywhere and it surely would be fun to pop over that way for a visit.

Ok Ive got company coming for homemade turkey soup dinner tonight so Id best get at it. Have a wonderful Friday evening all.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 6:13PM
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Good evening

Oooh Deanne - what fun that would be if you could fly here for a visit. Is Rochester airport too big? I know some small planes leave from there. I'll look into it. Your outfit sounds lovely - hope you can get a snap of it.

Michelle - baby swim lessons are so much fun if the child enjoys water. We moved to San Diego when David was 1 year old and he spent hours in the pool. He could swim easily across from one side to another, mostly underwater using only his legs like a little tadpole. To him it was all deep end so he never cared where he jumped in. It meant constant, constant surveliance but it was also a lot of fun.

Janie - what a fabulous weekend and view! We love going to Niagara but have never stayed over there. It sounds like a romantic getaway.

T - yes do share more quilting pics. Are you working on baby ones by any chance?

Ahhh - its wine night tonight. I only had a box of Chardonay and would rather have gone for a nice red, but its still pleasant to unwind with. We've just finished lemon chicken and roast potatoes, and I told Annie and David we could eat rice pudding down by the fire. I'm on a rice pudding kick at the moment and have perfected a recipe.

Have a good evening


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 6:56PM
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Janie, the Niagara Falls pictures are wonderful. You had a great view from your room. I have never been there, but would like to sometime. Was your DH surprised?

Deanne, we would love to see a picture of you in your snazzy outfit. I can hardly believe that you feel your gardens need improving. LOL

Mary, I know which kick you mean. Kenzie was doing it last night. Not underwater though. They have gotten a membership at this Y. It is brand new and very nice. It is near their house. It is where DD works at the daycare. She got the membership for 1/3 the normal price since she works there. I imagine they will be swimming a lot.

V, you need to take a few pictures of those gorgeous sunsets or sunrises whatever they are. LOL

Off to a birthday party.


One of my sunrises:

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 7:09PM
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How unheard of a MAN starting the thread? lolol yeah well whatever; ) Sorry I was teasing you last night,David but I couldn't resist as you seemed to be talking to yourself. It's good that you stopped by hopefully you will stick around a bit. I can only imgine how tough the last year has been-but I bet I don't have a clue,huh. Hope things are settling down for you. Would love to hear tales from the garden.

Deanne-your nails and getting all gussied up sounds so fun! Will we see a pic?-do a hand model shot; )

T-congrats on the twins under construction!-how fun and I LOL when there was mention that the big news was potentially YOU having twins! I get all exhausted just thinking about it. I have to admit the kids are now at an age where I get SLEEP and I like it-I would be not so good at the lack of sleep from TWO babes. I'm just so happy when I hear that a couple who wants a baby so badly does get their wish. I'm very happy for your family.

Michelle! That is a gorgeous sunrise!

Honey I'm glad Bullet is improving. Funny that he's playing closet tricks on you! I bet you were so worried.

Janie-what a cool view of the falls! I'd like to be on a leisure trip right about now: ) At least we had sunshine today.

Did I say I was making table centerpieces for the teacher luncheon? Ok well I did that today. I want to show you guys but I really can't post a pic since these are loaded with the school kid pics-that would be a no-no. Maybe I could go to paintshop and paste a blue dot over each face?? lol. At any rate I am happy with how they turned out.

well I didn't want to cut this short but I've got MIL probs again and I need to take care of a few things. Her stump has a large swelling(the size of half a baseball!) Please cross your fingers that this isn't an infection-that's always my biggest fear. I'll let you know when I know.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 8:00PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

You would think I'd know what a sunrise is, having named my dog that? I knew I didn't sleep well last night!

Time to open the red wine!

    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 8:15PM
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Hello everyone,

It's been a busy week and will be a busy weekend also. The winds have died down. No rain since Jan 2. I guess it's not our turn this year. I have checked the other site and it looks like it will develop into a very nice place but I do not have time to participate in 2 forums.

Just a few quick comments on some that I have read.

V- I will be thinking of you this weekend. Sorry about the timing of the notification.

Babs, I volunteered in the library and in the classroom for several years. I really enjoyed it as it allowed me to get to know so many kids. They all went from Kgrtn thru High School together and it was nice to watch them grow up.

Oh T, that is wonderful news. Looks like you have a couple more quilts to make. And by the way, you are never boring.

Hello to David. I've never met you but have seen your beautiful pics.

Deanne, hope you have a great time at the party!

Michelle, that is so great that Kenzie is learning to swim so young. I don't know what we would have done without our pool. DD loved to swim when she was young. You could see it on her face when she came out of the water. I noticed this past summer she still has the same expression on her face. Too bad she doesn't have time to swim as much as she'd like.

Brenda, hope you have a fun weekend. Glad your DS condition isn't quite so serious.

Yeona, thinking of you and both your sisters. Hope things improve for everyone.

Janie, beautiful pics. Glad you had a nice weekend.

Honey, So happy to hear Bullet is doing better.

Well, that is all I have time for. Hope everyone has a good weekend.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 8:40PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Ok, don't laugh but I took my laptop upstairs to bed with me tonight and here I sit under a down comforter propped up with comfy pillows. For obvious reasons this will be short because it's only a matter of time before I head off to snoozeland. We just got home from dinner out with friends. One had a colonoscopy this morning so the inappropriate dinner jokes were flying all night. Oh I just can't wait to hit 50...lol.

Wow, Jane, great shots of Niagra Falls...slowly I turn...step by step...lol. No I won't subject you all to the stooges humor. My parents went to NF on their honeymoon. In fact I was probably conceived there provided I really was 10 days early. I hear it can be quite the garden hot spot in the summer.

Deanne, ooh la la-you are going to have fun tomorrow night. Let's see the nail bling and dress combo. If you fly up to Mary's, swing by and pick me up.

Babs hope all is well with your MIL. She's gone through enough.

So nobody has heard from Saucy, huh? How strange. I was just thinking today about some other AWOL idyllers-Ei, Chelone, Barb...

It's supposed to hit 50 F again tomorrow. So much for a seasonal January. We still have some slight snow cover here but with temps in the 40s and 50s it won't last long. Spring cleanup here I come and oh how I'm looking forward to my walk.

I'm fading fast so will "see" you all tomorrow.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2006 at 10:33PM
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wendy2(zone 6 MA)

"Star of the day, who could it be..."

Check the link - the banner on the top of the page for today was designed by our very own Babs! Congratulations, Babs - very pretty!

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 8:11AM
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Good Morning!!!

First to Yeona: I've been learning more about bi-polar than I ever wanted to know and the Really interesting thing is that current research shows there may be more than six different "kinds." I supposed that's like saying all Salvias are alike? My brother's psychiatrist now thinks that the root of his many daily difficulties may be from an "orphan" form of bi-polar that doesn't respond to the customary treatment. Will certainly let you know more as I do. Hope your DS, and everyone who loves here, gets some peace and that she starts eating. Sometimes not eating is the last personal choice a person feels they can make.

Eden: Thanks for the Home Goods tip. I have some houseplants that are growing at a much faster rate than I've experienced before and need to be repotted!! Shucks -- gotta go shopping!!!

Sue: In bed with the laptop??? Think I'll leave that one alone. LOL

Deanne: It's looking better and better for me to come up for the party. My ensemble is ready and so am I. Just waiting to find out specific details of my sister's B-Day party and am trying to steer everyone to the 19th ;-)

David: I don't know you, either, but I know your gardens. I didn't have to actually sell mine, but I left them with my former husband in search of a new life. Five years later, I can tell you that it still tugs at my heartstrings when I think about those beds, but it's been exciting to plan our new landscape with someone who actually cares. I've decided that the best mental approach is to be glad I know now what I wish I knew then and make these the best gardens, ever. I look forward to getting to know you better!

Honey: So glad Bullet is feeling better.

V.: Sorry, but I had to LOL at your dog story. Not a malicious laugh, but just thinking what your reaction would've been had it been your DD who pierced her tongue. How does a dog do that? BTW: Tongues are the most "swellable" parts of the body and if messed with too much, can close airways. Glad the dog is okay. More glad that it wasn't your DD. (It was a long Friday, sorry!)

Michelle: Having never been to Niagra Falls, thanks for the shots! It's one of those places that I'll get to at some point....

T: I'm jealous of your impending re-grandmotherhood. Especially with twins!! Fraternal means that they may be different sexes, and how cool would that be. Keep us posted.

To everyone I've missed, know that I've "read" you with interest and am very glad to be considered an Idyll. The other board is lovely, but this is my cyberhome thanks to Sue :-)

Off to shop!! Send out the posse if I'm not back by morning :-)


    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 8:54AM
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Good morning

Babs - you really are a star! But we all knew that. Congratulations! Having finally checked out the other site it looks very well run, and the web master a hundred times nicer than here at iVillage. However, this still feels like home for Idyll chatter but it will interesting to watch the other develop horticulturally.

Sue - Though not 50, DH has had many a colonoscopy and is rather expert in the genre of inappropriate dinner jokes.

Grace - no rain since Jan 2nd - wow! Isn't this when you expect the winter rains? What do you have blooming right now?

Martie - have fun shopping.

Today Annie has her violin Solofest - she will play scales, a prepared solo and sight read for a judge. I wish I could fast forward to 3 PM and have it all be over. Annie has worked so hard on the piece and can play it very well, but it is difficult technically and could easily fall apart under pressure. I'm doing my best to be calm and reassuring - do you think a 3rd cup of coffee will help?

See you later


    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 9:24AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Morning all, it is 43 degrees out this AM and it is supposed to warm up to 50 again for the third weekend in January. And then the weather people are talking about a major 'Noreaster for Tuesday night. The tides are going to be extremely high next week so the coast is at risk the was it was during the 'Blizzard of '78'. I'll say it again. I don't ever remember a January with this kind of cazy weather extremes

Hi Martie,oh boy, oh boy!!! So happy you are going to be able to come to the party. I'm crossing my fingers that your sister's party is on the 19th. ~~ Thanks for the information on bi-polar disease. Food for thought.

Thanks Wendy for the link! Babs, congratulations on a beautiful design. Fabu-fabu!!!

Sue, I read your post to Doug last night and he was all excited to fly to Hartford to pick you up on our way to Rochester! He loves ANY excuse to get into that airplane and having another 'mission' (picking you up) just makes it that much more fun for him. So... that is totally a possibility. We'd have to have a fairly flexible schedule for it as we'd want to do it in nice weather. I'm not in love with flying in the small plane when I can't see anything. So.....

Mary, yes we can and probably will zip over for a visit one of these days. I asked Doug last night and Rochester isn't a problem for him. We'll need to make plans. Doug checked the times and Rochester is only about two hours from Hartford and Hartford is only about 35 -40 minutes from here. The return trip is even faster because of the prevailing winds. How fun is that? ~~ Your lemon chicken/roast potatos with rice pudding for dessert probably made me gain two pounds! Sounds heavenly.

Hi Grace, great to hear from you,


Michelle, that sunrise photo is drop dead gorgeous!!! I love it. ~~ Thank you but as you know with gardens, there is always room for improvement. LOL One of the things I love most about these forums is that the sharing of information and ideas have helped me create a more beautiful landscape here. I've tried and done things I'd never have thought of.

So V did the sun rise or set for you this morning??? LOL

OK time to get off this computer and get to the gym, have a great day everyone!


    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 9:37AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Mary, I was writing my post when you posted yours but wanted to pop back in and wish Annie all the best of luck with her violin solofest!!!! I'll be thinking of you this afternoon.


    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 9:40AM
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Best of luck to Annie. I remember those days. Ours was called Solo & Ensemble Festival. I remember being very nervous before hand, then relieved it was over, then nervous again until they posted the marks outside the door, which usually took an hour or so but seemed like forever. Looking back, it was a character building experience and one I have fond memories of. My medals from those days are one of the things I've held onto all of these years. Mary, I'm sure you're a calming influence on her but I think it can be just as nervewracking on the parent as the preformer. I hope all goes smoothly with her piece.


    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 11:15AM
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Ooh, ooh ooh Deanne. That would be even more fun to have Sue come for a flying visit too. I hope DH will be able to be here as he'd really like to meet you all. He is also a great airplane buff and would love to hear about piloting small planes. I'll need a bit of time to whip the house into shape.... (for those who weren't at our last Idyllunion, both Deanne and Sue have immaculate houses as well as unbelievable gardens). We're about 25 minutes from Rochester airport so it would be easy to pick you up and bring you here for lunch.

Michelle - I forgot to mention your sunrise is absotely stunning - what a way to greet the day.

Thinking about Babs MIL today.

We just got back from lessons and Annie's last run through was pretty good, her scales excellent but sight reading very shakey. Still, she's in good spirits and the sun is shining. Thanks for the good wishes for this afternoon.


    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 11:43AM
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Good morning!

Michelle, what a beautiful sunrise!

Mary, best wishes to Anne today (to you too!).

Babs, that banner is gorgeous!

Brenda, I bought the book you've been using.....just beginning to read it.

Here are a few of the quilt blocks I've been working on. They are 5" square unfinished, when they are sewn together into the quilt there will be a sashing (frame) around each of them (white fabric 1" wide) they will be 4.5". I'm enjoying making them. The blue & white one has 44 pieces in it, if my memory is right. The white & pink one has 37 pieces and it was a bear to put together (for me anyway). I'm using the same white fabric on each block but the other fabric is just whatever I grab out of my scraps of fabric. It will be a mish-mash (scrappy) type of quilt....if it ever makes it to 'quilt' stage. Right now it is keeping me busy and that is good enough.

Not a very good photo but that seems to be my norm lately, darn it all anyway!

It is suppose to be windy & rainy here, I believe, so a very good day to hunker down in the house and spend the day organizing/cleaning/tossing.

I hope Bullet is still feeling well and that Mystic's tongue isn't causing him trouble with eating & drinking.

Hello to all !

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 12:40PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Mary you would be saying I had an immaculate house if you happened to pop in on an unscheduled visit...lol. Company is usually the cleaning catalyst here.

It is absolutely incredible out today! Incredible! I just got in from cleaning up the front garden in a tank top and light fleece jacket and was sweating at times. If anybody told me back in November that I would be doing spring garden cleanup in January I would have told them they were crazy and this the second Saturday in a row now. Because it gets cold at night (20sF) the ground is mostly frozen so you can walk around in the beds without disturbing anything. What a boondoggle.

Good luck to Annie this afternoon.

Deanne, no talk of a nor'easter here-right now they're just talking about possible snow with some rain, high of 39 F for Tuesday. The dogs are getting groomed Tuesday night so bad weather will just figure.

Tom went to get his hair cut and I hope he comes back soon because I'm hungry for lunch.



    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 12:47PM
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Aw how cute about Annie's solo festival...hearing that makes me reminisce about those same nervous moments. When I did that for clarinet my fingers would shake and my knees wobble! For some reason I don't recall sightreading-THAT would be very scary. I always felt pressure because the judge I always ended up with knew my dad(also a instrumental music teacher)but I always did fine. I bet Annie feels like a weight has been lifted off her shoulders and life is good again lol(that's how I always felt and I was happy I had a whole year before I had to do it again-that's so funny. I did really enjoy when we had ensemble contests though-I liked the group thing. Should Andrew get that far with his clarinet I am very interested to see how he is-the kid doesn't get nervous;something I just can't pathom and would love to be like. I will be nervous for him.

BTW since I'm droning on about AJ.... I now have that 'weight off my shoulders' feeling-the science fair project is DONE: ) He presented on Thurs., the judging was yesterday(he did admit that each time a judge approached him he'd break out into a sweat(LOL). No more prodding him to write up reports or practice his speech it was such a drawn out process. I hope he got a good grade on it for the amount of time put in.

Thanks so much for the thoughts on my MIL. Chris' mom is doing better-we found out that this swelling can happen when the prosthetic is adjusted-it was such a scare though and she was beside herself but calm now. We'll go over there today which should lift her spirits-she has to stay off her prosthetics for a bit now hopefully this isn't a setback.

I was checking my gardens today and everything is behaving as in not growing too much-these temps in the 50's always concern me. I am excited that my Caryopteris clandonensis(sp?)cuttings from last spring are alive! Any of you who have this plant and cut it back in spring,you can just stick those cuttings in the soil and they will root! Try it for fun-it's such a pretty plant.
Eden I was thinking of you from way back when you mentioned you might pull out all your lamium. Did you ever end up doing that? I ask because if you haven't it makes a nice filler for window baskets or pots and I've been able to overwinter mine just by placing pine boughs over them-they'll have a good head start when spring arrives.

How fun for Deanne and Sue to visit Mary-heck Deanne we'll pitch in for gas and you can make rounds to all the idylls lol.

Thanks about my forum banner-Wendy thanks for showing the world...; ) lol

I had been wondering about Yeona-somehow I missed what is happening with your sister-She's bi polar and won't eat? Sorry I have to go back and find where I missed that. I hope you are doing OK.

Martie I had such interest in your DB's situation because my cousin has something going on but I'm not sure if it's a chemical imbalance she inherited or instead from meds she's been on for liver disease and anti rejection meds for her liver transplant. She's very messed up and acting schizophrenic and threatening to her family. They ended up getting a restraining order against her with the stipulation that the court order rehab for her. The mess is bigger than that but the way the system works I wonder how she will get the proper help and *stick* with it. The likely outcomes are so unfair-living on the streets or going to jail.

Hi to the rest of you gals...and guy; ) David the unofficial rule is if you start a post you have to stop by and comment too!

OK gotta go, Chris for some strange reason is organizing our drawers and clothing storage-I won't question it but what a can of worms he's prying open!


    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 1:12PM
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I just came in from picking up sticks in the front yard. With the ice and wind that we had, there were a million. It is a beautiful day and nice to work in the garden. I took the camera out as there seems to be so much green. I have iris sprouting along with several other things. I took a few pictures of the evergreens that I have in one area. As you can see there is still some snow in areas, but this week has taken a lot of down along with most of the ice that was on our driveway. Lots of rabbit droppings in the lawn and garden. I guess I can go light of the fertilizer this year.

Good luck to Annie.

T, I love all the different patterns that you are using. What fun.

Babs, maybe you can crop the kids out of the centerpiece picture. Id love to see it.

Deanne, dont forget pictures of your outfit and nails.

Funny but last night and early this a.m. I was unable to log in to the other site.

These are some evergreen plants in this area. I would never post a picture like this in the summer, but right now it looks pretty good to me. Notice how green the grass is.

This is a little veronica and some sedum:

There is still some snow, a shot thru the arbor:


    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 1:33PM
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Deanne and Doug: When the plane flys over me to get to Hartford, do a dip and I'll wave!! Still no definite plans but it's also still looking better than not for the party.

Michelle: These might be the "best" pics so far!!! Eternal hope!!! We are in path phase of several gardens. Is that river stone that you used? What is the base?

Babs: My educated guess is that your cousin has no idea why a restraining order was issued and doesn't realize she's doing anything wrong. Not only could it be a serious chemical imbalance, it could also be the mental trauma of organ transplant that most transplant MD's pass off and don't provide care for. Oftimes, this mental trauma is much longer lasting than the actual surgery itself. Court ordered rehab means next to nothing unless there is a solid base to which the person can return. It doesn't sound like that's the case, here. A gentle suggestion: Contact her surgeon and get her a referral to a mental health professional along with whatever substance rehab she's attending. If the surgeon refuses to do this, keep calling until you find someone who will. If "the system" sees that it is being called to task rather than the courts or family taking responsibility, they are obliged to act. If they don't call the Commissioner of Mental Health's office in your state and let them know the family will hold them responsible for any harm done to your cousin or anyone else as a result of your cousin's illness. It's truly unfortunate that there needs to be a squeaky wheel part of the process, but this is the reality. Again, the restraining order will probably do nothing but confuse your cousin without PROPER treatment. All good thoughts ....

Eden: I never made it to Home Goods. Went outside at 9a to start up the car, starting moseying around, went back inside to get crappy clothes on, and sometime around 2pm had the yard mapped out with major water retention areas. The containers can wait, but not for long. LOL

Mary: Annie and you are very brave! My sister went for her college entrance trial, got anxious, and played her flute piece about 1.5 times faster than it should've been. As a result, her fingers got tangled, she started laughing, the monitor got disgusted, and she decided that if it took perfect playing to get into that school it wasn't for her. My point? While the marks are certainly important and gratifying (we hope) the real challenge is the process. Hope all is calm and bright in your home this morning!

T: Wonderful work! I've always avoided quilting because of the exactness of the measurements. (Sue, Wendy and Monique will attest that my personality doesn't lend itself to highly intricate tasks :-) Thus, I am in awe of anyone who can take plain old fabric and make a quilt. Congrats!!

Honey: How did the drapes come out?

Grace: Wish I could say no rain since Jan 2 but a lot of my clay yard is puddled and more is on the way. Are in in any fire danger?

Sue: LOL the clean house motivation. Took a serious look around yesterday and realized that since I've not been here during daylight, I haven't seen the two weeks worth of dust all over everything. Yeah, It only takes two minutes but, is it fun? No!! Weekends are for Fun.

Yesterday Kyle arrived home with a new girlfriend whom I'm taking hostage until they're about 5 years older ... She carried on a complete conversation, is in the middle of seed starting!!!!!, asked for cuttings of my Hibiscus 'Mr. Ace' and also asked if she could come back sometime in the spring to help me weed to learn the right way how. Hmmmmmm. Thought this might be a setup, but talked with Ky later and he said no, their first date was actually to an Agway to get seed starter since she doesn't have a car and needed a ride. Are arranged marraiges out of the question????

Another quick kid thing: He's in the midst of getting recommendations for his Spring '07 semester in Japan. It's becoming a reality and I have 11 months to get over my apron-strings thing and be truly excited about him going. Have any, more experienced moms felt that way????? It feels over protective, but hey!! he's still "my baby."

Massive food shopping, dusting (ugh!) and repotting are on the docket for today. Or, may just kick back with Marie Antoinette and make a dent ....

"See" ya'll later!


    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 8:56AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Yoo hoo! Where is everybody? Tired from all the outdoor activity I hope. Michelle you look like you've got the same conditions right now as me. Despite all the warm weather I still have patches of snow all over. My east garden is still too frozen and has too much lingering snow to get any real cleaning done. Today it's supposed to be colder (mid 40s) with rain later in the day. I may still go out and putter around. Whatever winter interest ornamental grasses provide is long gone by here so before they blow all over the neighborhood 9even more so than they already have)I should get them cut down.

So Mary how did Annie do?

I imagine Deanne had fun at her high end bash last night. Where are the promised pictures?

While I was outside yesterday I started making mental notes of all the plants I need to move and what I will need to fill some of the empty space. Alot of my empty space is dry, crappy soil in part sun. Not enough sun to support plants that usually like things dry and crappy and too much sun for most dry shade plants. It looks like I'll need to have another truckload of compost delivered this spring so I can try to amend some of these less desireable areas. At least I'm starting to think about gardening again. Usually I completely lose interest around November/December then get it back in January. This year I'm running a little late.

Allrighty then, the day is young and I have no specific plan except for my walk. Not that it's bad but I don't want the whole day to get away from me.


    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 9:04AM
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Good morning

Annie did great yesterday. It wasn't a flawless performance (she got finger tied one in spot) but she managed to keep going. I didn't actually hear her play. I could have listened and even watched through the glass in the door but that was way too nerve wracking for me. As soon as I'd wished her luck and she and her teacher went in, I high-tailed it down the corridor and waited for a full report afterwards. It turned out I knew her judge - a retired teacher who lives at the end of our street. We used to play in an orchestra together. She is very nice but known to be a hard marker. As we were leaving the judge came over and said hello and told me Annie did "very nicely". We get the results on Monday.

Martie - I think you're quite right about the process being important, not the final mark. At this level the judges are very constructive and encouraging. Annie's playing improved more in prepartion for this than any other time. She attempted something difficult, overcame her fears and I hope has a great sense of satisfaction from doing so. However, once a year is enough!

We celebrated Solofest being over with an ice cream by the canal. It was in the 40's and sunny and the canal path was full of bike riders, dog walkers and joggers. A slightly chilly and very unusual activity for the end of January.

Martie - what a dream your son's girlfriend is! She sounds a real keeper. At this point I can't imagine having a child as far away as Japan - a week with Annie at camp is our longest separation.
T - I love your quilt blocks and their intricate patterns. Did you teach your daughters to quilt too?

Sue - we're getting the rain here too. I did some yard clean up yesterday and like you, am planning all sorts of moves and overhauls come spring.

Michelle - I have so many rabbit droppings I'm amazed any of the winter rosettes of perennials are still there. It is exciting to see green at this time of year.

Yesterday I had an Edenesque (cool adjective?) experience cleaning the kids' bath. I was leaning in, giving it a good scrub when out of the blue, the shower pole and curtain came crashing down on my head. Unlike the vacuum, it didn't draw blood but I have a good sized bump. Just another example of housework being dangerous, and something to be avoided when ever possible.


    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 11:11AM
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Hi everyone, It's been raining here all morning, but now the sun's trying to come out and we're at about 45F. Not a trace of snow on the ground and it feels like an early spring day. I've been bringing houseplants home with me here and there the last couple of weeks and plants from the light garden in the basement seem to be making their way upstairs too. I must be needing to see green growing things around me to get me through the next couple of months.

Mary, I'm glad to hear that Annie did well yesterday. I bet she was glad to wake up this morning realizing it was all over. Maybe we need housework helmets. Today's the first day I've had anything to do with that vacuum since it attacked me last Sunday.

Wendy, I'm ordering mostly coleus and salvias from Singing Springs. Also as replacements for ones I didn't bring in from last summer, a zingiber midnight and iresine herbstii. I'm thinking of adding xanthosoma violaceum too. I got x. lime zinger last year and really like it. I ordered some stuff from Avant a couple of weeks ago. One I'm excited about is something Monique has, clerodendrum ugandense. LOL, on your son needing you to cut his waffles to stay on the lines. He's not a perfectionist is he?

Babs, I did clear out the lamium from under the lilacs. I amended the soil last fall and want to put in shade plant through that area but I saved some and put it in other areas. Good idea to add it to container gardens. Thinking good thoughts for your MIL. I sure wish we could see the centerpieces...

Does anyone grow clematis scottii? I put in my High Country order yesterday for a couple of agaves and saw the clematis and couldn't pass it up.

Where's Deanne with that picture of her in her finery from last night?

Brad's waiting for me to go out and grab some lunch. So TTYL, Eden

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 1:58PM
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Eden, that is a tempting clematis. I think it would be fabulous in my rock garden. The price is great too.

Mary, how nice that Annie did well and now you can all relax.

Sue, I sure am tired. I picked up a wheelbarrow of sticks from the front yard. By the road we have a huge cottonwood that lost branches up to 3" diameter and about 10 long. I had to use the 4 wheeler and trailer and hauled away about 3 large loads. Then I helped Rick in the garage. We are insulating and finishing the inside.

Martie, the new GF sounds like a keeper. The path is river stone, which is a cheap option around here. I put landscaping fabric under it and it has worked well. I put this garden and its path in 1998.

Deanne must have had a late night ;o)


    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 2:40PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

The rain started here about 45 minutes ago. Looks like I'll have to brak out the rain gear for my walk. Other than that I've accomplished little to nothing today. Yesterday I took a chance and did a bit of vacuuming and dusting. No injuries but best to quit while you're ahead. Tom has been a bit more productive and now has all the old wallpaper off going up the stairs and in the upstairs hallway. Time to start thinking about paint colors-maybe a very pale shade of sage green to complement the living room.

Eden, I wonder if Marie knows anything about that Clematis. Plants from High Country Gardens generally prefer winters on the dry side so even though it says it's hardy to zone 5, it may not be hardy for you. I'm trying to decide if I want to do any mail order this year and if so, from where. Were you able to winter over the Xanthosoma Lime Zinger? Logee's had those all over the place last weekend but I was afraid to buy it this early. Just about all my coleus cuttings rotted this year. That reminds me-I'd better go water the plants in the basement...it's been over a week since I've been down there.

Martie, I agree the new GF sounds like a keeper. Does your son go to UCONN?

I haven't seen one rabbit this winter but while cleaning up I uncovered a labyrinth of vole trails. Too bad I can't fence in the entire yard and let the dogs patrol all the gardens. Although since I don't seem to ever lose plants to varmints I'm not entirely sure it's voles I have and not shrews.

Time to suit up and get hoofing.


    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 3:16PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Hi guys!
It just took me 4 minutes to log in. What a royal pain.

After partying last night I need to get to my treadmill, but decided to stop by for a visit and a look at Deanne's photo. Hint hint.

About the clenmatis, Eden, I think Scotii is lovely and have seen it in photos en masse. I wonder how many it would take to make a clump? I'd not be afraid to give it a try, but do read up on drainage for it. I find clematis often do better than zoning info implies.

Sue, I'm planning on painting my kitchen and chose Farrow & Ball paint called "Cooking Apple Green". I made test panels of it and it looks like IT WILL WORK! It really is a nice pale sage. I love these paints because they have lots of pigment to them. Many are wishy washy...

It has been really raining here today! Yesterday Charlotte delivered a huge vole in our front hall. DH kindly removed it. Thinking over the month of January this year, this song came to mind:

It rained all night the day I left
The weather it was dry,
The sun so hot I froze to death
Susannah don't you cry.

So long!

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 3:40PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Hi all,

Well! We had an absolutely fabulous time at the party last night. The party was at the Boston Harbor Hotel. That hotel is simply gorgeous. One of the nicest places Ive ever stayed in. The cocktail and dinner party was incredible. Open bar with all top shelf selections. The dinner began with an appetizer of shrimp risotto, green onion with lobster, a salad of spring greens, balsamic vinaigrette with deep fried goat cheese (this was absolutely scrumptious) then for my entrée I had filet mignon, with steamed asparagus and for dessert a chocolate mousse torte. Dinner was served with a lovely J. Lohr Chardonnay with our appetizers and nice Cabernet Sauvignon with our entrees. It was just perfect. Unfortunately the pics didnt turn out all that well and you cant really see my dress too well in the photograph. The close up of my nails was awful! My hands look about 90 years old so you cant see that one. LOL

Mary, glad to hear Annie did well with her solo. You all must be relieved that is over with for now. ~~~ BTW Im with Sue, if you saw my house now youd never apply the term immaculate to it. Right now it is getting to the stage where Im going to be shut down by the board of health if I dont do something about cleaning it up. ~~ We definitely need t make plans to come for lunch. Doug is pretty excited about being able to fly out there.

T, Love the quilt you are working on. So very pretty. Are you hand piecing them or are you doing it by machine?

Babs, glad to hear that AJs science fair projects done. When do you hear what he got for a grade? ~~ That is really good news about MIL. You must be so relieved. So how long does she have to stay off the prosthetics? ~~ LOL about pitching in for gas and making the rounds. Im NOT going to tell Doug that. Hed think it was a great idea!

Michelle, I love your garden photos. They look pretty good to me too!

Martie, How cool your DSs girlfriend is mature and loves to garden. That sounds too good to be true.

Mary, Oh no about the shower pole. Glad to hear you werent hurt. As you said, it proves that housework is a dangerous occupation and should be avoided unless it is absolutely necessary. BTW love the new Idyll adjective "Edenesque" cool, LOL.

Eden, a new product, the Eden Housework Protective Headgear. ~~~ Love that Clematis.

GB Please give Charlotte a big hug for me. Any creature that can rid a garden of voles is awesome. ~~ So you were a party girl last night too???? Hope you had as good a time as we did last night.

OK Im toast and it is going to be an early dinner and off to bed early for us tonight. Have a great evening everyone.


    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 4:51PM
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Deanne, I thought I'd check in and there you are. You look beauuuutiful! Sounds like a wonderful evening. After Doug stops for Babs he could come North and swing by for me and Honey. I have a small airport just a few miles from me. The on up and around to Mary's. It would be a big circle, lol.

Marie, I was so glad to see that you'd posted. From your last post I didn't know if you would be here again. I would miss you so much if you weren't posting at all anymore. I know it has to be a royal pain with the logging in but I so hope you're able to check in here once in a while. Thanks for the advice on the c. scotti. I figure it'll be a stretch growing it here but I'll look at it as a gardening challenge. I just need for it to become a small clump, I don't have much room left, lol. Can't wait to see the finished kitchen. The color you've chosen sounds lovely. EWWWWW on the Charlotte and the vole story.

Martie, I would love it if my son would get a gardening girlfriend. None of my kids are much interested at this point. The girls are too busy with work and David thinks of gardening as hauling heavy stuff around for me, lol. I think when the girls are older and have more time they'll become gardeners though. At least I hope so.

Sue, the Lime Zinger is easy to overwinter. I have quite a few alocasias and colocasias too and I just keep them all in kitty litter buckets of water on the basement floor under lights. I've had some for 2 or 3 years now. I was thinking the same thing about ordering from High Country. I wonder how the plants I ordered will do in a humid Michigan climate? I'm just going to try to give them really good drainage and put them in some of the drier spots in the garden.

Michelle, thanks for the pictures. Your gardens look great even before spring cleanup! I have a couple of heucheras in the front beds that are green as can be with all this rain and warm weather.

T, I've been meaning to comment on your quilt tops. The scrappy quilts are my favorites. I love all the different fabrics you've used. Do you hand quilt? My mom keeps telling my sisters and I we need to learn how to do the actual quilting because she's done so many quilt tops and has a hard time with the quilting since she has arthritis in her hands.

Sue, I've had Brad scrapping wallpaper all weekend too and I'd better get off this computer before he catches me and goes on strike.


    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 5:32PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

What the heck? I don't have to log in this time. Wonder what is going on....

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 6:04PM
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Deanne - you look GORGEOUS!!! You have a lovely, lovely figure. What a fun night it sounds.

Eden - Clematis Scottii looks very pretty, such delicate little bells and a good price. I'm rather tempted.......

GB - so nice to see you post again. Like Eden, I was worried we might not be hearing from you any more and was missing you. Hope the logging in resolves itself and you'll be able to pop in from time to time - just occasional visits would keep us all connected. Did clever Charlotte have to dig the vole out?

I spent a couple of hours this afternoon meeting with one of the school music teachers and a friend to help plan a Memorial Concert for Susan's daughters. It will raise money for music scholarships in both the girls names, and will give their friends an opportunity to play in their memory. Annie will play in one of the ensembles, and there will be various chamber groups and duets from the more advanced players. It's scheduled for the end of March.

Well, dinner is cleaned up, a last load of laundry is running and I'm hoping to get the last of DH's spare change rolled up this evening. Its going to be our "fun" money for Hawaii - we're over $100 already and the nickels still to go.

Have a good evening,


    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 7:21PM
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Hello Everyone -

Managed to do a little weeding and rearranging this afternoon. I am starting to think about what vegetables to plant this spring. Do any of you do vegetables? If so, what are your favorite varieties of tomatoes and bush beans? I think I am going to plant 6 tomatoes, maybe 8. I have a deal with my neighbor. I give him all the tomatoes he wants and he gives me all the avocados I want. I always do Better Boy, but haven't been happy with the other types I have tried. My sil told me that Celebrity was as early as Early Girl and as good as Better Boy. I thought about asking on the Tomato Forum but I wanted to know what YOU think.

This just isn't our year for rain. The storms keep going up and over. Nor Cal and further North are getting pounded. Last year I think we got something like 30 inches, way over normal for us. (Our back teeth were floating.) We are an inch short for this time of year, but we could still get more in Feb and Mar. If we don't get more we will have severe Red Flag Alerts (Fire Danger) this summer. We had a couple of small fires during the Santa Winds.

DD called at 6AM to say that she hit a skunk on her way to work. She works for Starbucks. She said all morning people kept coming in saying "something stinks out there!"
She's thinking "yeah, my car!" I felt bad for her and tried not to laugh, but she tells a really good story and it was sounding something like "he was all over the road. I had to swerve several time before I finally hit him." By the way, how do you get the skunk smell out of your car?

Before I go I have to say Deanne- you are beautiful, love the dress!

Talk to you later.


    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 10:43PM
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yeonasky(z8b VancouverBC)

Gung Hey Fat Choi, everyone and Happy Year of the Dog. Evan, my DS is born in the year of the Dog. Hopefully that means that this is especially his year! Some celebs that are the year of the Dog are:

Bill Clinton, Mother Teresa, David Bowie, Elvis Presley, Madonna, Claudia Schiffer, Andre Agassi, and Steven Spielberg. Id say Evans in some good company.

I'm a Rooster, vain, deep thinking thing that I am, lol.

Martie, thanks for the info on bipolar. Your brother has even worse struggles than Bietta, my DS. She is eating a bit better now with my other DS's nagging, but is slipping into depression again. I wonder which of the 5 types she has. Bipolar 2 seems to describe her, though she has way more depressed episodes than manic or hypermanic ones.

Hope the shopping went well. The gov has all of my shopping money. :( Well technically and literally it's their's but I can dream that it's mine. :)

Honey glad Bullet is eating and feeling better, and has been released from the closet. I have the opposite problem with my dogs. They want to eat more than before, so I suspect that the food I'm feeding them now is inadequate. I'll have to switch to Iams? or Science Diet. Its surprising that our little cats can rally, and so difficult to see them ill. Funny how a pet can annoy so much, and then when they get ill, or do something wrong, and hide, we want the cat with all the annoying traits back. Why can't we just accept the minor irritating traits of those we love before the scare of illness. I have to practice what I preach right now, as my Juliette knocked over Richea's laptop, and disappeared for a while. I found her in the laundry room sleeping on the clean sheets, lol. Richea's not too pleased, but I caught him petting her this morning, so I suspect all is forgiven. Hopefully it can be fixed though.

Great that you're using the treadmill. I haven't been to the Y enough lately. I went to Tai Chi yesterday, with my DS, Dorthe, but shes not up to the treadmill yet. So glad she can at least do that with me.

T congratulations on the fraternal twins, to you, your DD and Jamie. Glad the fertility treatment worked. A rocky road that leads to babies is a good thing. They must feel twice blessed. Identical Twins run in our family, through Richea's mom, who's an identical twin. It skips a generation though so I might be a great aunt or grandmother to twins.

You asked what we all were up to on Friday. Well this weekend I was supposed to clean the house for the annual inspection from the landlord. Instead I got sick. Id felt a little bit off for 3 or 4 days, which has now developed into a fever and screaming sore, sore throat, which just wont quit. Ive lined up the usual treatments, but wished Id started sooner. Its a good thing I dont need to talk to communicate here, or talk to clean, not that Im getting much done at all! I might have to ask the guy to come at the end of the week instead. I hope your ordering snafus get cleared up quickly. What are you sewing?

Wendy I never could and still cant stay in the lines. Will you cut up my waffles, too? ;) Your son sounds like a hoot. He also sounds nicely independent. His future wife will thank you profusely. My kids seemed more independent before they started college. Now Im doing everything again, during school, as they want top grades and both study like mad. Oh the good and the bad of having adult kids at home. Oh well it wont last forever. Will it? Sometimes it feels like it will.

V, did the wine help? Some days I have such a hankering for the stuff but my system, and Dr, says not. :(

Hows your poor dogs tongue. Im glad it wasnt worse. I hope the dog continues to heal quickly.

Sue Im not laughing. If I had a laptop, thats what Id do today for sure, stay in bed. I hate being sick. Your poor friend, having a colonoscopy. Even that word makes me cringe. Ive got less than two years till I'm 50. :( Maybe Ill be able to laugh that off later. Right now its bugging me, for some reason.

Michelle glad Kenzie is up and swimming, and sliding again! What fun that sounds like for her. My kids both loved swimming as kids, and took lessons from the beginning to the end, but neither is interested anymore. Id hoped they would lifeguard or teach to earn extra money, but both their interests changed. Do you swim? I loved swimming as a child, but never did get many lessons.

Too bad about your kids father and his difficulties with relationships. Guys like that should wear a sign. I agree it is sad that he hasnt been there as much as he should. Oh well at least your kids have you.

Thanks for thinking of me and my sisters BTW. They aint heavy, but what theyre going through is hard.

Mary thanks for the commiserations. You all make things easier. Im glad things went well for Annie. She sounds like a trooper. Sometimes I freeze up when having to perform or talk in public. Im glad thats not her experience. Im also glad my kids didnt inherit my shyness. Im very crowd shy, but had to dance in front of people for a few years as a kid. I loved to dance but hated being on stage. Believe it or not Im nervous around people, lol.

Jane that is a neat view from the 38th floor. I love Niagara Falls. That is where Richea and I sent my DS and her DH for their honeymoon. They loved it. I didnt have a honeymoon and wished Id had one, and didnt want my DS to think the same thing.

Grace thanks for thinking of me and my sisters. At least for Dorthe there might be more of a chance for a normal life. There is a surgery that were looking in to that would literally cure the Atrial Fibrillation, AF, and the Flutter, which would effectively diminish the chance of the stroke from the AF. Though shes still a candidate for problems, due to excess weight, and her pre diabetic state. Im still not sure if Ill try to post in both forums, either. I always am a bit nervous about signing up.

Lol about your poor DD and the poor drunk skunk. Could she drive into a pool of tomato juice? ;)) Maybe the car wash would do the trick.

GB nice to see you. Hope thats the end of your trouble signing in. Hope the partying was fun, even though the treadmill is work. I too love the C. Scotii and hope to find one here. There are too many things on my list these days, but whats more little plant, lol. You mentioned having a hectic time of things a while back. I hope things have sorted themselves out again.

Eden Im with you on liking this place the best. I also feel that we are a bit like Phoenix rising from the ashes, in that weve survived a few shake ups. I hope we can continue to Idyll on!

Deanne thanks for the hugs. I needed that. And hugs back to you.

The dress looks FABU, FABU, if I might borrow your apropos phrase again. Great that you a good time at the Boston Harbor Party. BTW I probably have 150 yr old hands. The poor things need a year of cream slathered nights with gloves on. Ive never had false nails put on, but like the look of them. Alena gets her nails done periodically, usually with a French nail?!? Very simple: its only clear colored with a white tip.

David glad to see you again. I hope your new garden gives you peace from the woes of dealing with, your old garden owner, and giving up your old garden. I miss your wonderful pics and hope you give us a glimpse of your garden world as it evolves.

Cindy, I havent had much experience with other sites, but do know that when Im surfing the net and dont have my pop up blocker on that I get them coming at me fast and furious. I do find the ads that scroll across the screen and block the writing the worst, though, and that's what they have here. I often just copy the writing onto a word doc, in that case, and read, ad free. I reacted the same way as you, about how the flu affected you after the fact for two weeks. I wondered why it wasnt talked about. Maybe its rare enough, to not be a real fear, but Im going to follow that rule after seeing Dorthe get so sick.

Babs sorry to hear of your cousin. What a tough thing to go through. I hope she can get treated. Some cant and some can, it seems. Im hoping one day all will be treatable, says the ever optimistic Yeona.

The worst thing about illness is it seems to inevitably bring on some depression. Dorthe is struggling with that right now and also with the realization that her loner lifestyle has left her lonely. The days stretch endlessly when shes away from work, which she was these past 2 weeks. She made choices that seem to run in my family and didnt keep in touch with former friends, and also never wanted, or was incapable of, a long term partner, so now she faces illness in isolation. I am trying to be supportive, but am struggling with having to include her, when she never wanted to be included or even phoned much before. It isnt easy, when Richea the kids and I have an established lifestyle. Now that the drugs are taking care of her symptoms for the most part, although AF is troublesome, she is going back to work. She has asked me to phone her every day, and I dont have time every day, at least for any lengthy talks. She's a parking lot attendant and has no other workers with her. I simply dont think I can take the place of what friends would do and be her only sister in town as well. Im trying, but I cant do it all. I'm so glad the illness can be managed and that she has had no permanent damage, but feel very bad about these mixed feelings. I want to have a solution that works for both of us, but fear I won't get it right. Any advice or ideas would be appreciated.

Hi everyone else. I'm missing and thinking about Ei, Taryn, and other missing Idyllers too. I've got to go soak my throat in something soothing. TTYL and have a great week.


It's a blessing to feel, though what you feel might be well felt.


"Our greatest glory is not in never falling,
But in rising every time we fall."


For one human being to love another:
that is perhaps the most difficult of all our tasks,
the ultimate, the last test and proof,
the work for which all other work
is but preparation.

Rainer Maria Rilke

He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother

-Written by B. Scott and B. Russell
-Peaked at #7 in 1970 as performed by the Hollies
-Peaked at #20 in 1970 as performed by Neil Diamond
-Peaked at #30 as the B-side to "Let It Shine"
in 1976 as performed by Olivia Newton-John

The road is long
With many a winding turn
That leads us to who knows where
Who knows when
But I'm strong
Strong enough to carry him
He ain't heavy, he's my brother

So on we go
His welfare is of my concern
No burden is he to bear
We'll get there
For I know
He would not encumber me
He ain't heavy, he's my brother

If I'm laden at all
I'm laden with sadness
That everyone's heart
Isn't filled with the gladness
Of love for one another

It's a long, long road
From which there is no return
While we're on the way to there
Why not share
And the load
Doesn't weigh me down at all
He ain't heavy, he's my brother

He's my brother
He ain't heavy, he's my brother...

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 2:47AM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Good morning everyone. No beautiful sunrise (or sunset!) this morning; instead we have clouds and snow. Although it's not supposed to anount to anything, it is turning the ground white.

Mystic is doing great. I don't think he'll have a picture-perfect tongue ever again, but all is healing and he is feeling fine. We found a spot where one of the kennel wires became unattached and have used some JB Weld to reattach it. Until we're sure it's fixed, he will only spend short periods in the kennel.

We left early Saturday morning to drive up to the Twin Cities for the memorial service. Once again, we didn't see a sunrise because it was gray and rainy all morning. It was an exciting trip, as about two and a half hours into the drive, traffic started to slow down and we saw lots of emergency lights. There was an SUV in the median that had obviously rolled over, and the paramedics were tending to someone quite a distance from the car. Several more cars were scattered about, some damaged, some not facing the right direction. We were surprised because the road seemed fine. Then we started to fishtail. BIL corrected properly and slowed down a lot. Then we came acorss the second bunch of cars that had hit the ice. This time there was one completely on its side. A short distance later, the temperature rose a bit and we had no further ice. I didn;t find out until later that MIL already had been fussing that the six of us were all going in one car. She was quite displeased when she found out it had been a bad drive, but happy to see us all safe.

The memorial service was very nice. The uncle was an exceedingly pratical man who had been given the gift of a new treatment that extended his life another 18 months just when he thought it was almost over. So he had laid out the entire service well ahead of time. It was touching to know it was exactly what he wanted, and it took a lot of burden off his family since the details had already been decided. It was also nice to see so much of the extended family, and we have vowed to plan more get-togethers just to see each other, rather than getting together under sad circumstances.

The drive home was uneventful except that I got a bit of motion sickness from riding in the third seat, which pretty much took the wind out of me for the rest of the day.

Deanne, you look gorgeous! Love the dress.

Yeona, that was one of my favorite songs when I was in high school. I could never decide if I liked the Hollies' version or Neil Diamond's the best.

Grace, my favorite tomato is an heirloom variety, Peach Brandywine. It's a yellowish tomato but absolutely delicious. A little different but worth it!

I've more comments that I have time, so toodle-oo for now.


    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 10:57AM
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honey_mi(Z5 MI)

Hi, everyone. So far, this has been quite a day. They walked out 10 of DHs colleagues this am. It was scary and heart wrenching for him to watch it unfold. They took each affected employee into the conference room and then security helped them unload their desks and walked them out. Many of the gals affected are single parents. Many tearful goodbyes and much sadness. DH is exhausted.

The paper and this town are full of goings on about the big game next weekend. I was asked by several friends to work it and/or volunteer and I declined. DH and I plan to stay as far away from that craziness as possible. My DB is working the event as a Model T driver one of the attractions being offered around the stadium. Im sure hell have tales to tell of celebrities hes driven. Eden, Im so glad we have that seminar to look forward to and that Ill be driving in the opposite direction as everyone else. What a zoo thats going to be.

OK, my big news is that Ive lost another 2 lbs. and Im down a size. Yeah! We went to the Home Show Sat. and I was able to wear a turtleneck I love and I dont think I looked like Shamu in it. However, I fell off the wagon, munched a few crackers and then topped it with a glass of wine. So Im going to need to do double time on the treadmill this week. I dont want to back slide.

Deanne, I admire what youve accomplished more and more each day. Wow, you look fabu, fabu in that photo! I was thinking about you this weekend while browsing a Bloomies catalog. Cute and saucy dresses seem to be back in.

Martie, the drapes are going to be a long, arduous task. I didnt realize how tedious it would be. This weekend DH cut the rods to size and we put the brackets up. I found out that sawdust is a cobweb detector! Sheesh. The snafu is that the rod brackets are obvious. I'm not sure how Ill resolve that. The work area is set up in the basement, ping-pong table covered in plastic so fabric wont snag, but only have one seam torn out. What a pain. Im looking forward to DONE. What was I thinking? Ill be an irregular poster until completion.

Thats wonderful that your DS going to study in Japan. What a treat itll be for you to visit. I agree. The GF sounds like a keeper!

T, your quilt will be beautiful and a real keepsake for DD. What a godsend it is that you live close to DD. Those twins will keep everyone hopping.

Eden, why are you pulling your Lamium? I sheer mine in early spring and then after it blooms and it comes back fuller.

Mary, sorry about the shower pole. Ouch! But glad to hear Annies solo went well. What a lovely idea to have a concert in your friends memory.

V, hows Mystics tongue? Poor guy.

Michelle, that sunrise pic is just gorgeous! Thanks for the lift this am.

Babs, are you a graphic artist? That banner is wonderful. I wouldnt have clue one on how to do something like that. Glad MILs swelling was a minor, temp problem. Re Chris organizing drawers, what a find! Keep that boy. It would never cross my Toms mind to do that!

Thats interesting info re bi-polar, Martie. SIL was diagnosed with it shortly after the wedding. Whats so scary for my DD is that the meds have to constantly be changed as he grows used to them and they all have undesirable side effects. Some of the symptoms/problems with it are awful.

Michelle, we had lots of wind yesterday but not too many sticks. I think the fall pruning and tree trimming helped, plus Ive already been out there twice cleaning up.

Marie, glad to see you back posting here. I think once youre back in, you shouldnt have a problem logging in from now on. At least thats what happened to me. Yeah, Charlotte. Good dog!

Yeona, re pets, I think Ive created a monster. Now all Bullet wants to eat is fresh roasted chicken or turkey, steak or canned tuna. He only nibbles at his regular food. Sorry youre feeling under the weather! Get well, soon.

Janie, what a great view from your room. Sounds like a fun weekend. Grace, those Santa Annas are sooooo hot. Hope you dont have to worry about fires.

Wheres Taryn? Oh, and BTW, didnt Taryn ask Spike to start these conversation threads? And wasnt she the impetus for the IUs?

Hi Cindy and Wendy and anyone I missed. Thinking of all Ive fiddled away half a day. TTYL. Honey

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 11:32AM
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We had rain over the weekend. The temps are going to be cooler this week with highs in the 30's.

Deanne, you look fabulous. The dress is so elegant.

Eden, my DS was very into vegetable gardening in high school. When he comes to visit in the summer he always checks out what I have in that garden. I think he will get back into it someday. My DD mentioned a raised flowerbed by her new house, so theres hope.
I have several heuchera Key Lime Pie that are just a green and pretty as can be.

Marie, I checked out your paint color. I like it. It actually reminds me of one of the colors I used on my garden shed.

Mary, a memorial concert sounds like a lovely idea.

Grace, I do some veggies, but dont really get into the varieties. Mine are usually starts that I pickup locally. I usually do pole beans.

Yeona, I hope you are feeling better. Yes, I do swim. Many years of lessons as a child. I never cared much for them as they were in the a.m. in an unheated pool.

V, glad you got to the cities safely. The cities are about 3 hours from where we live.

Honey, congrats on the weight loss and the new size.


    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 12:17PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Boy, this doesn't usually happen to me but this day is dragging. It's not that I don't have plenty of work to do but I just can't get into any of it. Too bad it wasn't April so I could justify going home and working in the garden.

Deanne you look fabu in the dress and as usual your description of the food and drink made my mouth water. When it comes to food you certainly have a way with words..lol.

Happy Year of the Dog from Zoe. Today is her 8th birthday. Any birthday portraits will have to wait until after tomorrow night when she gets groomed though. Right now she's a bit scruffy. On Thursday she gets her teeth cleaned so needless to say this week will not end up ranking among her favorites.

Marie, I've never heard of Farrow & Ball paint. I wonder who sells it around here.

Honey I think one of my brothers will be at Superbowl. Somehow he gets tickets every year-probably because one of his wife's sisters is married to one of the big Ford dealership families in southern MA who must have a connection to the NE Patriots somehow. Speaking of Ford, I must be getting old because the CEO of Ford is looking like sort of a hottie to me-for a CEO type...lol.

OK enough drivel. Time to try and squeeze out a few more hours of work.


    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 2:56PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Hi guys, thanks all for the positive reinforcement. I do appreciate it.

Honey, congratulations on the weight loss!! Fantastic! I know exactly how much work and denial it takes to lose even one pound so kudos! ~~ How awful about the lay offs. Hugs to DH, he must be emotionally wrung out. That is just too sad.

Sue, LOL maybe I should have been a restaurant reviewer for a newspaper! Now that would be a fun job but not something that would be helpful to my eating requirements.~~ Hapy Birthday to Ms. Zoe. Would love to see new pics when she gets groomed.

Grace, love the skunk story but I'm sure it isn't funny to
your DD. ~~ Hope you get your much needed rain soon. We are way over normal here and if this continues there might be flooding in the spring. It never seems to come in just the right amounts does it?

Mary, I was very touched to hear of the Memorial Concert for your friend's daughters. You are so kind and always involved in positive things. ~~ I can't wait until we can arrange a visit. Doug is psyched to fly out to Rochester.

Sue, BTW, are you serious that you want us to come and pick you up?

V, glad to hear that Mystic is going to be fine. ~~ Scary driving conditions. I hate having to be out when the roads are like that.

Yeona, I love French nails but have never had them done. I might just spring for them the next time I go in and have a manicure. I think it is going to be soon because I have got to have these nails shortened. They are driving me crazy! LOL

Eden, I took these pics special for you today. From one OCD light gardener to another. I thought you'd love the in bloom fuchsias.

Have a great day everyone,

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 3:31PM
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Good afternoon

Happy Birthday Zoe! Sounds like rather a rough week from a doggie point of view, grooming AND teeth cleaning. (Clousseau was shuddering at the thought, especially as he's never been made to go to either!) Hope some birthday treats come your way to make up.

V - glad your trip went well and Mystic is recovering. I grow Brandywine every year but have never tried the peach one. Sounds interesting.

Grace - I grow tomatoes every year based on flavor and crack resistance. I've never grown the early ones as we're really only in it for the taste and don't mind waiting a little longer. Brandywine is an all time favorite. I also grow a few cherry tomato plants, last year it was Red Currant and Pink Grape. Gardeners Delight is an excellent small round tomato with a good flavor, and the kids love Yellow pear (small yellow pear shaped fruits). I usually include a small orange tomato, Sungold or similar as the mixtures look so nice in salads. This year I'm also trying Caspian Pink. The seeds at Pinetree are so reasonable (less than a buck a pack) its still cheaper than buying named varieties at the nurseries, and I always grow a few extra plants for friends. I imagine with your growing season you can have tomatoes fresh for much of the year.

Honey - how rotten about things at DH's work. My heart really goes out to anyone in that situation. We've been there and know how devastating it is financially and emotionally. Congrats on the weight loss! A new size is something to celebrate.

Need to run - I promised David a bike ride before meeting DH at the airport.

Hope to catch up with everyone else later


    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 3:41PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Deanne, is that a case of vodka I see next to your light shelves? No wonder why you spend so much time coddling those plants...lol.

Sure, pick me up on your way to Mary's. However be aware that I don't have the greatest track record when it comes to traveling by small plane. Let's just say there's a good reason why I no longer eat lentil soup.


    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 3:55PM
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Sue, LOL what a sharp eye you have to spot Deannes stash. We have auditors here this week and Mondays are always busy.

Deanne, your fuchsias are so pretty against the black. Everything is so neat on your light stand. I always leaves that should be pulled off. Did you get your cart from Sams? DH has one just like it. It looks like it works well for plants


    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 4:32PM
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Good Evening, I've been playing with houseplants all day. Tomorrow I need to get downstairs and work on the light garden.

Deanne, Thank you so much!! You're pictures keep me inspired. I love seeing how healthy and cared for all your plants are. And those fuschias are to die for! They look better than the ones I have outside during the summer. These pictures really brightened my day. Thanks again.

Mary, the memorial concert will be such a special way for Annie and classmates to honor their friends.

V, your driving conditions sound just like ours when we were coming home from my mom and dad's at Christmas. The roads don't look bad so you wonder why everyone is flipping over or landing in the ditch. Makes for a very stressful drive. Glad Mystics tongue is healing nicely.

Michelle, I have that same cart as Deanne and I got it at Sams. Bet she did too. Keep forgetting to tell you that I loved hearing about Kenzie's swim lessons.

Honey, how stressful for Tom. My brother-in-law had that same experience with everyone around him being led out when DCX did their big cuts a few years ago. He jumped ship not long after that and went to another company and I think that day had a lot to do with it. I remember him talking about how awful it was. I can't wait to hear Dan Hinkley on Sunday!

Sue, sending Zoe a big birthday hug!

Yeona, that was certainly a nice long post from you. I enjoyed reading it.

I'm home alone tonight so it frozen pizza and a coke for dinner. I have some grasshopper cookies made by the Keebler Elves for dessert too. Total junkfood night. My pizza should be about done so I'm signing off for now.


    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 7:53PM
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Hi again

I'm still chuckling about the Finlandia Sue! Deanne - your fuschias are simply gorgeous. You've made me want to fire up my light bank but I'm waiting till we get back from Hawaii (house sitters and seedlings are not such a good mix). I'm doing poorly in carrying over from last season - just Brug cuttings still in water. I'm still tickled to think you guys will be flying out for a visit!

Yeona - it was good to hear from you. Hope you are feeling better soon.

Eden - enjoy your junk-fest!

David and DH just got home from Cubs and where the boys made a very nice planter or window box. I was quite impressed. David is all excited about what to plant in it.

have a good evening everyone


    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 8:28PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Janie- I meant to say what gorgeous photos it looked like you were on top of the world!

V Im glad to hear Mystic is okay maybe hell start a new trend tongue piercing for animals? Yuck! It would interfere with dog kisses for sure.

Michelle fantastic sunrise! Really,from your own area? And I think your winter pics of your garden are beautiful- thats what Id like to accomplish some winter interest instead of a bunch of bare sticks.

T- those quilt squares are lovely youre really talented seriously, I cant put a thing together like that the colors look lovely together.

Congrats to all the Idyll children who have managed to make it thru their solos, science projects, and other school projects. That's one set of stress I am glad to be over!! I would love however to be a fond grandma watching (maybe some dayno rushing the "newlyweds").

Martie I do have to tell you DD went for jr. semester to Italy and while thats only half as far as Japan, and I knew I was being a worry wart (because she had just gotten over a bad case of mono), it turned out she really suffered some "angst" when she got there my phone bill for the first 2 weeks was Huge! It was nice to be "missed" but I was surprised she stressed as much as she did (esp. since shed been other places by herself over the years) so you just never know how you Or your kid is going to angst!

Deanne you look smashing quite "killer"!! I bet Doug was fending them off all nite! But you probably could NOT retain that gorgeous figure if you turned restaurant critic. They say thats a hard job but its one of those ones Id love to try, wouldnt you?

Grace, youre making us jealous w/ your gardening Ive really, really got the "itch" now but know it would be dangerous to do anything in my area yet with the 60s we got today, it truly feels like Spring is here but I know February can be fickle so have to restrain myself. O boy, the picture of going to a car wash & asking for a tomato juice "wash and rinse" comes to mind w/ the skunk story!! Eeek, I hope she finds something less drastic to get rid of the smell.

Yeona & Martie, isnt it interesting how depression is so much more prevalent almost everyone can detail a family member or relative who suffers in some fashion? Its very concerning I have several members who suffer my DD had it from age 8 on(diagnosed in her teens as probably the first occurrence instead of behavorial as it was originally diagnosed) the meds are so hard and such a trick to get right but when they work, they work. I always say one just needs to perserve just a little bit longer but I know thats easier for me to say than the sufferer to endure.

Honey thats terrific news re the lbs boy, some of these idyllers are really starting to make great strides. Im more in the babystep, painful babystep stage, but have lost a little bit by bit Ill get there I feel this year Im determined enough to do it.

Calling all OCD Lite Gardeners You need to order Greenhouses!! Fantatisc results but do you ever wonder if those plants are going to take over your house? Hehee. Those fuschias are amazing!

Happy Birthday, Zoe I think you need to talk to "Mom and Dad" about what a birthday week celebration should entail! They need lessons. Vet & Groomers cannot possibly be any dogs idea of fun for birthday!

I see Ive written a book I either need to write more or keep to gloss writer Im not.. but wanted to try to touch on most everyones comments for a change (Im sure I still missed people).
Ok - Im gonna go look at some photos at the otehr site - I find Im curious -- hmm, what's the thing about curiosity? I know it's gonna get me into trouble!

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 8:32PM
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honey_mi(Z5 MI)

Here I am trying to post from my new laptop and found I have to login. Maybe it's the way I have it bookmarked. And I see Cindy just jumped in. Hi, Cindy, please tell me that you were only kidding about only having a few weeks left of winter!

I passed along your thots and commiseration to DH over his rotten day. He says "thanks". He told me that this afternoon after the morning's purge, the boss went to talk to one of the gals nearby DH's cube and he overheard the conversation. This gal was told to take over the entire workload of one of the folks walked out this am. She told them, "I'm already working (unpaid) overtime daily and weekends and even then can't keep up." The boss told her that she better figure out how to manage her time better. She said, "Fine, I'm resigning." He said, "So, you're giving me 2 wks notice?" She said, "No. I, too, am an 'at will' contract employee. I'm giving you exactly as much notice as you did everyone else this am. Goodbye". And she took her coat and left. Can't blame her.

V, sounds like your trip was hairy. I don't mind the snow, but the black ice scares the bejebbers outta me! Glad Mystic is healing well, poor guy.

Sue, Happy Birthday to Zoe. Her week is the pits! First the groomer and then the vet. Oui Vay! On your other comment, yes, I guess he is a hottie. Very, very, nice guy. Hope he has the stuff to pull the co. out of the doldrums.

Deanne, I've done french nails for years -- first when I still did the acrylic overlays, and now after going au natural when I retired. I still have a manicure twice a month as a treat to myself and to gab with the girls. My gal is a gardener, too, and understands when I show up with stubs. We talk about plants the whole time I'm there. Re the French, I prefer the off-white tips b/c they're more natural looking and when I mess them up it's hardly noticeable.

Your plants look so vigorous and they're huge! OMG! A few of my coleus are large. Do we have to pinch them?

Well, I'm going to submit before I lose this post. It's time for me to catch a little TV. Goodnight, everyone.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 9:20PM
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Having two forums to go to wears a person out. I like the other one and think the people seem pleasant , but I still like this format better. I do not have the time to contribute to both...Actually I haven't read much on either so can't comment too much except to say to Deanne..Your plants look great. Nice and healthy. I think my grow lights aren't as close as they should be. I have plants on every floor except the attic. In my back bedroom , I think I have about 15 because it has four windows w/ every exposure except north. Most of these plants will go outside. I have some Pentas..four in fact. They have flowers buds but are getting leggy. Should I cut them way back now? I was going to eventually ..was thinking more like close to when I took them outside. With our hot winter , they probably would've survived under a little mulch. I have a pretty impatiens which floats in a ring in the pond all summer.and a bunch of herbs and rosemary ..I have about 5 ivy plants in the bathroom and about about 10 in the front bedroom. In my big new kitchen window I have about 15 ivy topiaries and about ten plants in the sunroom including three amarylys...one of which is ready to bloom. Big pink bud on it, but the other bought at Xmas started foliage but alas it's a dud..no flower. ..Question. I bought a Xmas cactus at HD yesterday. I've never had one before, and I have it at an east window. No instuctions w/ it. Will it just bloom at Xmas? I am so into different ivies now...love the little leafed ones. I got one two years ago at the Phila flower show that turned out to be a real favorite..such a unique leaf.The rest of the plants, pond ones included are in the basement along w/ my 42 year old grapefruit tree.
Honey..Glad Bullet is better. Sounds like you're spoiling him. I have been doing that a lot w/ elderly Louie. ..Too bad about the job losses. My SIL had the same thing happen to him two years ago. He had a very good job as communications director of a huge health organization, and one day half the workers from secretaries to top level people were ushered to their offices and escorted to their cars...Humiliating treatment for good people who were victims of downsizing..But he got a way better job and can bike there from his house. ..
Martie and Yeona...Sorry about your siblings' problems..Depression used to be a taboo subject but it shouldn't be. No one wants to be depressed but stuff happens and it can get built into your genetic code. We have it in our family and altho no one ever talked about it..just looking at old pictures gives a clear picture. I think I was a depressed baby looking at some old snapshots. My cousin who was killed last year, was my age and there are a gazillion pictures of us. He's always happy and cheerful and I always looked glum. My dad never smiled in any of the pictures except a small one on his wedding picture. >>
50 degrees and raining here. I dread Wednesday because that's when the memorial service for my friend's husband will be. He was a prominent attorney and the service will be held at the Methodist church up the street. Her life will never be the same . He was a real good guy...Sylvia

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 3:54AM
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Happy February 1st!!! Even just saying that makes the day better.

Deanne: The BBLLLLLIIIIIIIIIIIIIINNNNNNNGGGGGGG is not just the baubles. You are one hot babe!!!! Love the cocked hip -- isn't it wonderful to feel as good as you look?????

Marie: Good to hear from you! Connecticut has announced that they will be vigorously fighting a floating natural gas providing monstrasity 3 football fields long and 100 feet tall in the Long Island Sound. This is the same body of water that the state has just spent 20 years resurrecting from the effects of the 1970's pre-ecology laws. Son had done a "day with your congressman" and has signed on to help do historical research of the sight lines from the Connecticut shore. They are obviously looking at every angle.

Sue: Son is at Central. UConn said he needed to spend at least his first year at one of the branches (no dorms and very little collegy activity) and Central gave him a full scholarship and let him declare his major so he could take 200 level courses first year. It was a no-brainer.

Yeona, Babs, Everyone who deals in some way with bi-polar: Stay Tuned!! It looks like a major pharm company has a "breakthrough" drug. We'll see ....

Grace: One word: Brandywine (its 85 day for ripening makes it tough here but it does adapt to container growth to speed things up a bit).

Mary: The concert sounds perfect! I hope someone records it well and provides CD's to everyone who participates as a keepsake .... That action is a tradition in my Mom's and Sister's music community and brings comfort for years after the last note is played at the concert.

Michelle: I like River Rock and the bonus is it's cost. Do the larger rocks on the side of your path keep the river rocks out of the planting area? Since it's been there for so long, do you need to replenish the rock from time to time?

EEEEEEEEk. Just looked at the time and gotta chug the coffee, start the shower, and find the gardener's Latin book I promised to lend to a client.

Good Day Friends!!


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 7:13AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good morning Idylls,

Well the weather here is awful!!!! Overcast with a spitting sky, rain and sleet and snow all day. Yesterday was very overcast all day and apparently the entire week is supposed to be like this. I dont know how folks in the Pacific NW deal with this ALL the time. Speaking of which, has anyone heard from Barb??? I know they were on notice to evacuate because of the excessive rain and danger of mud slides. I hope she can check in and let us know shes OK. ~~ Id be bonkers if I had to deal with that kind of overcast all the time. I must have sunshine or Id turn into a mushroom. Im actually going to paint today. Egad! Will wonders never cease?

Sylvia, I always keep all my plants pinched back. I pinch things every time I water. It sounds like you have a great collection of ivy. You must spend a lot of time watering.

Honey, my GF introduced me to this nails place over in Pepperell that is really reasonable so I can see a manicure a week in my future. I love to have my nails done but the place I used to go to was way too expensive. This set of acrylics was only $25! I was some surprised at the price. They do a nice pedicure too and I think Ill splurge in that when sandal season rolls around. Actually maybe Ill have one done for our party in two weeks. (Sure wish you could come) ~~ How awful about that poor woman who walked out on her job. I had a situation a bit like that work overload happen to me many years ago. The finished good inventory analyst left and they gave me all his work but I was still called and paid as a file clerk. The guy was making much more $$ than I and after doing his job and my job for six months I asked for a raise. I was fired with no notice. I cant tell you how glad I am that I dont have to work in that kind of environment anymore.

Cindy, you are so correct that one could not remain at a reasonable weight if one worked as a restaurant critic. But oh what fun and yes I agree, one Id like to try. I wonder if youd eventually get sick and tired of all that food and youd lose your interest in eating rich food?

Mary, youll have to let me know if there are any varieties of coleus or fuchsia youd like from me. I can bring them when we visit. Actually I could start rooting things now so you can give me a heads up. Ive got so much this year. Im out of space under the lights.

Eden, Im so happy you enjoyed the pics. I do love to putter around with my plants. Ill have to take a new photo of the iresine. You should see it. Talk about a happy plant. That is the one I started as a cutting from my DSs plant a year and a half ago. I pried it out of the pot where it was outside all last summer and really hacked it to bits but it has come back stronger and prettier than ever. I love it when an experiment works out. Im going to have to be very careful hardening it off this spring so it doesnt lose too much. I used to kill fuchsia on a regular basis and I really dont know what changed. All of a sudden they started doing well for me and Im still surprised that I can get them to winter over. My friend on a fuchsia forum said that every year you keep them they just get bigger and better the following summer. Pretty neat. She has some fuchsia bonsai that would knock your socks off. They really are amazing plants.

Sue, you are a HOOT! ROTFLOL I never even saw that vodka box. I had too look for it in the photograph after your post. ~~ OK thanks for the warning. Well have to put you in the front seat and make sure it isnt a bumpy day. When the weather is smooth it really is extraordinary and fun.

Michelle, yes, Eden is correct, we bought that cart at Sams and it really does make a terrific light stand.
Mary, you were able to go for a bike ride yesterday? You must have a lot less snow on your roads than we do here.

Martie you are a scream The last I checked today was Jan 31st? LOL In fact that is unless my 2006 calendar wizard was wrong and added a day. ~~ (well thank you, te he, I did, in fact, feel rather pretty going to that party Sat night)

OK now Im going EEEEeeeekkk look at the time. I have to get to the gym and get my day started here. Have a terrific day everyone.


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 7:38AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Martie must be on a different sort of leap year.

I went to Central for a while-just long enough to get all the hours I needed to sit for the CPA exam. It's actually quite good for a small state school. The professors who taught the night classes were all professionals who worked jobs in their field by day.

So Deanne are you watering with any of that vodka? Is that secret?

I'm expecting an auditor at any minute so I'd better get going. Later...


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 8:16AM
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Good morning

a quick peek in before work. Annie got her results yesterday from Solofest and she scored 26/28 which is in the "outstsanding" category. She will have the opportunity to play with the All-county Orchestra one weekend in March. I really didn't expect her to get those sort of scores - we're all thrilled for her.

Martie - you had me confused but excited thinking January was over! I love the idea of making the CDs. We will also video the event and send a tape to Susan's parents in Taiwan.

Deanne - I would love, love, love any fuschia (or coleus) you could root. I've lost mine from last summer and they have become another favorite plant. I feel I'm returning to my roots as one of my very first paying jobs as a teenager was in a small nursery that propogated fuschia. Any of yours are gorgeous. I've yet to meet a fuschia I don't like, but then that's true for just about any plant which is why I get myself into trouble!

Sue - have fun with the auditor (if thats possible).

Oops - need to skedaddle


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 8:35AM
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Good Morning, So Martie, we're starting Feb. a day early? That's fine with me, lol. I was reading on Accuweather that February is supposed to return to more normal winter temps. I'm just glad January is over. We're a little colder here today and had some flurries over night, just enough to coat the grass. It's supposed to be a dry day though.

Sylvia, I loved hearing about all of your houseplants. I didn't realize you had so many. Do your cats bother yours? I have to be careful what I put in the rooms mine frequent because they've been known to eat them. I love ivy too and have a couple of topiaries.

Deanne, I'd love to see the iresine. I didn't overwinter the one I had but ordered another for this season. I'll have to try saving mine next time. I sure wish I had your luck with the fuschias. I'm a plant pincher too. I like to keep them nice and bushy.

Cindy, I would love to have a greenhouse. But the problem is where would I put it?

Mary, can't wait to hear what David chooses to put in his planter box this summer. You'll have to take a picture of it to share.

Bella will be here everyday for the rest of the week through Sat. and will be spending a couple of nights so my computer time may get scarce. I'll try to drop in as much as I can though. I'll need the break, lol. Have a great day everyone.


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 8:51AM
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Mary, just read your post and wanted to say congratulations to Annie. She must be very pleased and you must be so proud of her. That's a great score. All of her hard work paid off. We had something when I was her age called Honors Orchestra that we had to audition for and was a one weekend event. It was city wide so you got to play with others from all the other schools in the district. There were practices on Friday night and all day Saturday and then a concert on Sunday. We always had a guest conductor come in for these. It was lots of fun. Is her All- County Orchestra weekend something like that?


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 9:00AM
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Hi garden peeps!

I am indeed around but too busy to yap: ( In lurk mode hopefully for a short while-I'm working on the teacher luncheon but had to catch up on the laughs and pics here. Sue lentils,huh? lol(good to remember-kinda like brussel sprouts?)They go great with vodka...Deanne!
Mary will you tell Annie I said WAY TO GO! That is certainly an excellent score-I know she worked hard for it too. I think the memorial concert is a perfect idea-what compassionate kids-that's also good closure for them.

Good thoughts to everyone having challenges right now-Honey I've been thinking about the difficult time Tom must be having right now.

Off to grocery shop-does anyone need anything?


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 11:13AM
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Mary, how exciting for Annie. I just knew that she would do well.

Eden, I really admire how much you are doing to help your DD with Bella.

Deanne, the fuchsia bonsai made me laugh. I havent been able to keep one over the summer, let alone long enough to be a bonsai.

Martie, I do have my paths in that area lined with field stones and they do a great job of keeping the path stones in place. I have never added any more stones.

Sylvia, you had better get your camera out. I also love to see your ivy topiaries.

Its supposed to be 44° today and the sun is shining. I really should spend more time pinching my plants. Funny how I have so much gardening time in the summer and during the winter I barely find time to water the ones I bring in. Maybe its the outdoor experience that I enjoy.
Our bathroom project isnt going very quickly, as it seems like everything has a snag.


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 11:35AM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Sylvia - 11 ivy topiaries? Neat - would love to see photos also - I have 1 very sad and lonely one that never seems to fill in much (loses more leaves than it grows I think). With all those houseplants you too much have a huge amount of windows (all facing the right direction) or a greenhouse, or are a lite gardener too - which is it?

Mary, congrats on Annie doing so fantastically -- next time you'll have to listen!

Michelle - isnt that the way, always a redo project is more involved than one expects or plans for - what a hassle, though. You guys appear to really great work, so Im sure it will all be great when it's finished.

It's stopped raining here and Sun is out -- maybe it's heading up the East Coast to you, Deanne.


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 12:13PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

It's crappy out there-37 F and sleeting, yuck! I decided it was a good day for soup from Panera and as luck would have it today is one of the days they have cream of chicken and wild rice in the lineup. Let's see, how would Deanne put it...a most scrumptious creamy soup brimming with plump wild rice and gorgeous chunks of chicken served with the most beautiful whole grain baguette I've ever laid eyes on.

Congratulations to Annie!

Babs, thanks but the grocery store was on my lunchtime errand list. I needed to stock up on apples for "apple a day" campaign. It's my afternoon snack.

So far I seem to be able to keep up with all the garden boards I want because they all seem to be pretty dead right now. Maybe it's the time of year or maybe I just have too much time on my hands being in work avoidance mode.


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 1:41PM
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yeonasky(z8b VancouverBC)

Mary that's wonderful for Annie. A big congratulations to her. I'm glad all her practicing paid off. Nothing like success to keep a child going, and music is a wonderful thing to keep doing.

Martie, lol, I had to check that you were wrong, and was so relieved that you were. If today were Feb 1 then I'm in trouble. Dorthe's BD is Groundhog Day, Feb 2, and I've been too sick to shop. This is probably stress sickness, but still bad, bad timing. On top of Dorthe's birthday, today GST taxes are due by 5 pm and the house inspection is at 4 pm, and I'm nowhere finished either the taxes or the house. :(

Have a great day all.


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 1:43PM
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Here's some of my houseplants for your viewing pleasure, a little green on this last day of January.

Some in the kitchen...

A few in the bedroom window, but don't pay attention to the bedroom, it's under construction...

And some in the livingroom...


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 2:40PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Afternoon everyone, Im really being BAD. Im supposed to be painting and cant seem to sit down at my painting table and get to work. I keep telling myself soon, soon.

Eden, love, love, love all the lovely photos of your houseplants and all your lovely color in your home. What is that cute little evergreen plant next to the little angel statue? It looks like a microbiota. I love your ivy topiaries. So nice. Thanks for posting color here on a dreary day.

Yeona, hope you are feeling better soon. Sorry youve been sick. Taxes are enough to make ANYONE sick. LOL

Sue, Woohoo!!! Youve made me salivate. We should become a traveling road show of food descriptions. LOL ~~Weather here is pretty nasty here also, it has been flirting with 32 all day and drizzling so all surfaces are collecting ice. They didnt predict an ice storm here. Whoops, just looked out and it is snowing like blazes. What next? A thunderstorm? ~~ So youve figured out my secret ingredient for plant success? ROTFLOL Nope not really. Never have put vodka in the fuchsias.

Cindy, no sun here today and there is none in the forecast for the rest of the week. I hope they are wrong about that and you send me your sunshine.

Mary, Kudos to Annie!!!! That is fantastic. You must be so proud of her! Im going to go and take a bunch of fuchsia cuttings after Im done this post. Ill bring you a selection.

Eden, so instead of painting I went and took some more photos of my indoor babies for you. Here is the iresine, a lovely, lovely plant. I have quite a few rooted cuttings of this if you want me to mail one to you.

And just look at this cute hypoestes

This has to be my favorite fuchsia. Im going to do a bunch of cuttings from this later on. Who needs flowers with leaves like this?

Here is this plant from last summer in the container garden it was in on the front steps.

and a couple combinations. You know how I cant resist

Now this one is very special, I got the large coleus from Sue, I think is it Alabama Sunrise or something like that, I bought the abutilon when I when shopping with her at Comstock last summer, the Kiwi Fern coleus came from Eileen and the two smaller chartreuse Pineapple Wizard coleus came from Babs. Now how cool is that????

OK now Im really going to get to work.


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 3:15PM
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Eden, I love the pictures of your plants and your house. What a fun and cheerful home you have.

Deanne, wow is all I can think of to say. I really should show you my sad 'Kiwi Fern'. I do have some white/green hypoestes that I cute way back and they are looking good. I really like the pink variegated fuchsia. The foliage is fabulous. Your plants probably like your light setup better than mine like my card tables in front of south windows.

I wish we had a Panera here. The closest is 40 min. away.


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 4:36PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Wow, and wow -- as Michelle has already said - Im pretty speechless guys -- once again the "OCD's" have it -- those houseplants put mine to shame. Eden you have them squirreled away in wonderful places around your house & they look smashing!

Deanne - the question re that variegated fuschia should be -- Who does NOT want cuttings from that???? Incredible.
Plus I love the "Plant Idyll Union" groupings -- very clever!

Sue - Panera's is one of my most favorite "quickie" lunch places - when I worked in the 'burbs that was almost a daily spot for me -- dont hit it as often now that Im in D.C. - there's one in walking distance but Cosi's is right in the building sooo..... Love that Wild Rice Soup at Panera's though.

Almost quitting time - yippee -- then off to the Metro. It did get cloudy for a bit here - but we are not supposed to have rain until I think Friday again....
-Cindy the Houseplant Diploma Program Drop-Out

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 5:22PM
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Quick post before I get Bella ready for bed...Wow Deanne, those lite garden combos are to die for. I especially like that last Idyll combo. I think your iresine is the one I was going to order from Singing Springs, i. herbstii. I'd love a piece of yours instead if you don't mind sending it. I think the variegated leafed fuschia is f. firecracker. I just love that one. It's one of the ones I managed to kill last summer along with gartenmeister and a few other victims. Your's is gorgeous. Thanks for taking the time to post these. I loved seeing them.

Sue, hoping to see Zoe's birthday picture after her evening at the beauty parlor. Wouldn't mind seeing brother Nick too...

More comments later though I'd love to stay and chat. Have a good evening everybody.


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 6:52PM
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You guys would fall over laughing at my houseplants. Deanne you will be amazed at how mammoth that pineapple wizard will get in summer-I was constantly pinching mine back-I just love that plant. OK so I killed my Annebelle fuchsia-over watered most likely. My gartenmeister is still kicking after three years now-I'm only good at the hardy ones. Lol I have a croton plant from my mom and I have to admit it's looking alive but they take neglect in stride anyway. Deanne do you notice if there's a certain part of the winter season when your fuchsia cuttings root better? Did I read somewhere that they root best when they begin a growth spurt(that would make sense huh?). In fall I tried to root some with no success but this past week I was able t get a stem to root after a few days or so-maybe the days getting longer helps?
Eden I love your whimsically painted rooms-that Shaker check pattern looks so cool on your cupboards/drawerfronts. Did you do that yourself?Thanks for the pics!!!I see Bella up there on the shelf-that cutie.

Sue-you're a good apple...a slogan for your apple a day campaign: ) Thanks for reminding me I forgot to buy apples lol.

Ooops gotta go-Amer. Idol is on....Sue are you watching?


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 8:06PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Yes, Babs, but it's painful. Who tells most of these people they can sing? Some of them are just bizarre. My ears are starting to hurt.

If you all want to feel a little better about your indoor plants, I'll post a few pictures of mine. In fact, just the other day I was wondering why I even bother. I have zero interest in gardening in the winter and it shows.

Eden, your house is so cool. Decorating just doesn't seem to be my forte so I live vicariously through others. Zoe and Nick are still at the groomer. I'll be leaving in a half hour or so to pick them up. With luck the black ice will hold off until I get home.

Did you all know that GW now has a "Hot Topic" forum where discussion of religion and politics is allowed? Check out the link. They actually have a conversation area where the old rules still apply-seems odd. Whatever.

Nite for now.


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 8:47PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Evening everyone,

Ahem, dont ask how much painting I got done today. But I did catch up on my bookkeeping and balanced the business checkbook that I hadnt been able to for a month. So the slate is clean in the office and all I have to do tomorrow is get downstairs and get the brushes out. That is unless of course I have to wash the toilets or something like that. Oh yes, I got the second floor completely vacuumed today also. Plats

Babs, I really love the PW coleus. It is a beauty. Funny you should mention rooting fuchsias right now. I have a couple cuttings I threw in water a couple weeks ago and they were completely rooted up when I checked them today. I think they do in fact root really well this time of the year. Ill trade whatever you want of mine for a cutting of your gartenmeister???

Eden, Yep, Ill be happy to send you some rooted cuttings of that iresine. I think Ive got a dozen or so going right now and know Ill never be able to use them all. Thanks so much for the Id on the F Firecracker. Id lost that tag and was ripping my hair out over it. I should have known just to ask you! LOL

Michelle. The lights I have those particular plants under are a set up with four, four-foot bulbs per shelf so it has lot of light.

Eden, are those containers in your last photograph from Home Goods? They look familiar and I think I might have one of them here. Thanks again for posting those pics Ive been scrolling back and forth all afternoon and enjoying the view!

OK NCIS is on and Im going to catch it.
Nite all,

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 8:54PM
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Oh good - I'm so glad we still get to see great photos here at the Idylls. Eden, your house simply exudes charm and warmth. I remember loving your teapots on the kitchen cabinets when I was there. What a creative person you are!

Deanne - ooh, ooh, keep them coming! Your combinations are luscious. The Idyll combo is very special indeed. Hope tomorrow is a productive painting day (unless of course you'd like to stop by here for some more vacuuming).

Eden - the All-county orchestra sounds exactly like the one you used to play in. There will be children there from all over the area. We have the music already and one of their selections is from Harry Potter. I hope it will be fun for Annie - I think it will certainly be a good experience.

Babs - hope the teachers lunch goes well.

I'm about to get ready for bed - nite all


    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 9:20PM
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Okay..just had a hard time logging on and forgot my password which they are supposed to remember...Deanne...Those are some lovely plants...particularly the iresine. I must confess my ignorance. Never heard of it..Your indoor green thumb is as proficient as the outdoor one.lol..I water my plants once a week ..always on Sunday. Not too rigid , am I?
Mary..Great results for Annie. You must be proud.
Eden..Enjoyed seeing your lovely plants. Most of the cats leave plants alone except for Phoebe. I can't get poinsettias any more because they shred the leaves immediately..even before I place them in a safe place. One year, Pumpkin a long deceased cat, ate a leaf and lost his "voice" for a day. I am an Ivy freak now and it used to be Boston Ferns which always looked so lovely till I got them home. I have 12 windows in the sunroom and I had 12 ferns at every window. They were much too dirty and I was always overflowing when I watered. I just went and counted and I have 32 ivies. Most are just plants and only a about four or five are actual topiaries.
Michelle. I will try and post a picture of my kitchen window plants tomorrow.I suffered w/ a crappy little window for 21 years in my kitchen when all 45 of the other windows are period and long and nice sized. So this box Pella architectural one was a high priority and it has a copper seamed roof on the outside. They installed it three years ago after cutting a hole in the house in 7 degree temps. They had made the window in the craftman's shop and it was a tiny bit tight which freaked me because there was a big beam on one side and the kitchen cupboards on the other, but he made it work. Husband is miffed I clutter it up w/ plants and spoil his view, but hey, it's not like it's an ocean view..just a side street.
Sue ..Love Panera and eat there regularly. Always get 1/2 a turkey artichoke panini and chicken noodle or vegetable soup.. Love their coffee..Always have three big cups. Anyone wired????
Cindy..I think I mentioned that I have 45 windows not counting attic and basement. Back bedroom is the brightest and some people who lived here used this a a master bedroom because it has the view of the garden and ponds and the magnolia tree practically hits the window in the spring and I can open the window and cut lilacs then as well. We've used the front bedroom w/ the fireplace as the master..
Babs..Wouldn't miss American idol. Some of those people are delusional, aren't they? Love all the judges. Simon cracks me up...I'll write a note to myself to post a few ivy pictures tomorrow. It's hard to compete w/ Deanne and Eden tho..Sylvia

    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 2:08AM
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[[Chin up with no embarrassment whatsoever]] Happy February 1!! Really!! In TV land one is always a day ahead for placement reasons and I had just finished entering my stuff for the day so yesterday for me was February 1. Now that it is truly officially February 1, I'm waiting for the Groundhog :-)

Anyway --

Thrilled to hear about Annie's results,

Deanne's Irisine (one of my favs but have never overwintered),

Michelle's neglect in watering (a common bond but this year I'm getting much better since Rich is adding up the $$ spent),

Sue's lunch (I love the Panera Cinnamon Bagel for lunch -- that and a cup of coffee keeps me going 'til at least 6p)

Eden's contentment with Bella (can't wait for my turn),

Seeing everyone's pictures (still haven't replaced the drowned digital), AND,

Knowing that the Idylls as I know them are intact.

My Big Event of the Day: Bring pizza lunch to 18 hungry Motorcycle Mechanics and the rest of the crew at a Harley- Davidson dealership. Get to wear serious leather to work -- it can't be bad!! (Am leaving the halter top at home -- 35degF weather is not condusive to any sense of modesty and I am, after all, a Professional. LOL)


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 6:47AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Morning check in here. Just finished my oats and am enjoying my first cup of French Roast for the day. Yum! I've been splurging and going out to Starbucks every day lately. The new store is only five minutes from here and it makes a great coffee break in the afternoon, not to mention I received $90.00 worth of Starbucks Gift Cards for Christmas. Do people know me or what. ~~ On another note, I'm going to have to get these acrylic nails off! They are driving me nuts. Even though I had them make them not too long it is still too long to be functional. ~~ I took ten cuttings off that Fuchsia Firecracker this morning so that plant doesn't look as good this morning as it did yesterday.

Martie, I'd love to see you in your Harley Leather Outfit! Inquiring minds want to see. ~~ I can put your name on one of the Iresine cutings if you'd like.

Sylvia, that is once a week whether they need it or not? LOL I usually do mine a couple times a week and right now the coleus need it even more often than that because they are terribly root bound and need to be potted up. I have a serious dilemma, I'm completely out of light space and haven't even started the dahlias up yet. ~~ Looking forward to seeing your ivy plants.

Mary, I have to agree with you that Eden's home is about the most creative and charming I've ever seen. It should be in a decorating magazine.

Has anyone heard from Eileen? I really do miss her lovely chatty posts and am hoping she is OK. And how is Ms Chelone doing these days, not to mention Taryn, is her house sold?, and is Barb and family and their new home OK. And so many others MIA....

Have a great day everyone.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 7:19AM
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Good morning

Happy Goundhog Day!

Martie - and you left your leather halter behind? lol. The only leather in my wardrobe was a rather nice pair of beige suede pants I managed to spill paint on when decorating our room - they were toast. Oh well, I guess I know where to borrow some from should an occasion arise.

Deanne - I'm just enjoying a cup of Cafe au Lait (I frothed the milk with a litle whisk) - cheers!

January was one of the warmest on record, but we are predicted colder than usual weather the first half of Feb, with high snow fall. Guess I can put the bikes away again.

I too am missing absent friends and hope all is well. I think we need to talk Cynthia into just an occasional visit over here.

have a good day


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 8:19AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Now it's Mary on the alternative calendar...Martie, what have you started...lol. I must say January was a very easy month to take this year. Usually it drags but I'm sitting here right now wondering where the hell it went. In general, we don't get much in the way of extreme cold any other month but January. So far the coldest it's officially been in the Hartford area this year is 6 F but it hasn't been that cold at my house-a good year to winter over a new Musa basjoo.

And today we have another gorgeous Marchish day on tap. The best part about that is it's not March. Tomorrow is supposed to be cloudy though so no shadow for the groundhog, supposedly a good thing. I need to keep an eye on my witchhazel. It's covered with buds and if the mild weather keeps up it will probably start flowering soon.


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 8:58AM
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Good morning!

Some serious morning face happening here. I could not believe that it was morning when DH woke me getting dressed for work. I completely missed the noises associated with the alarm, DH getting out of bed & getting ready for work. I think another couple of hours of sleep would have been ideal!

Deanne, you looked great for the weekend festivities! Your plants are so lush & healthy......you have the 'touch'.

Eden, your home is very fun & just lifts the spirits to see. I loved the touches of whimsy and I am a fan of Mary Englebreit's colors, patterns & decorator touches....so seeing your photos was eye-candy---loved it! Thank you for the spirit lifting & smile forming photos.

I was glad to see GB here once again.....add my name to those who miss seeing our friends.

Mary, I love seeing your notes. Congratulations to Annie! You're often on my mind. :o)

On the news last night it was mentioned that we had 224% more rainfall than our normal for January. 224%! Yesterday was another stormy day with lots of rain & wind. Lovely weather------if you are a duck.

I spent yesterday with a quilting friend. We spent the day shopping (Costco warehouse shopping) and visiting a couple quilt shops. She drove and I bought us lunch at a BrewPub. Service was terrible but the food was good. It is one of DH & my favorite places to eat, but if the service is that lousy next time......a line shall be drawn through their name. So there!

I ordered 2 carseats & a double stroller for DD & SIL. We provided those items for our other DD when she was expecting so we wanted to buy those for these new babies too. DD picked out what she wanted and I shopped around online.....$400 later (gulp) they are on their way. While at the warehouse grocery store yesterday, I got the great idea of beginning to buy some big boxes of disposable diapers for the babies' early weeks (to help the new parents out). Each box was almost $30. I didn't buy any but will be more prepared (mentally) next time.

I need more coffee....


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 9:03AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

It was a false alarm. I still need to log in every durned time I post here.

I've been reading along, so am up to date with the doggies, Eden's adorable home, the indoor gardening crew..which does NOT include me, Annie's stupendous accomplishments, etc.

I am about to begin priming the litchen cabinets and see that this will take an eternity to finish. Yesterday I bought the cabinet hardware...50 knobs! It is amazing how many a kitchen uses up. I was sent to this amazing store, a liquidation place, and so got a very good deal on them. Nevertheless, nothing is free.

I also poked around another amazing shop which I pass many times a month but never explored before. WOW! Four floors of antique junque. I bet some could be used in the garden, so I will be back there for sure!

Friends from England write me about all the pruning they have finished...and so I am feeling way behind even before the season starts. Oh dear....

It's a busy busy time here, still with many stresses. Those sunny days are very much needed. I still am faithful about using the treadmill, but the scales are awfully slow at showing any difference.


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 11:04AM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Yesterday I bailed out of the office by 1:00, climbed into bed and succumbed to the flu. Yuk! Fever all night long and now I have an achy back. Still home in my jammies sipping my coffee.

Deanne, I love Starbucks but it's usually my weekend treat. It's my DD's version of Cheers, though - they all know her name!

Mary, what great news about Annie and her solo!

I also enjoyed the house plant photos. Maybe if I feel a little perkier later on I'll take a photo of my split leaf philodendron. It's really flourishing this year and I keep waiting for Gaugin to pop up from behind it.

Since I am in serious work avoidance mode, I know I'll be back later!


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 11:07AM
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I forgot to tell you guys my coffee horror story yesterday-I shiver when I recap the event in my head. Anyway, it was 7a.m.-ish and my bag of coffee was bare so I crawled to the leftovers of yesterday's pot(I'm not too proud to drink yesterday's coffee). I find my favorite coffee cup,pour the remains of java nectar from the gods and proceed to place it in the microwave to nuke it. All this time I'm groggy as ever and I lean forward to put the cup on the oven deck...there's a glassy sounding [clink!], the cup, coffee and all fall to the floor. I was so tired and I should of known it would happen. Coffee splatters everywhere, MY FAVORITE CUP has holes punched out in two places but is otherwise intact(hmmm)but of course not useable anymore. I have NO more coffee anywhere in the house and I'm yelping as if wounded by a garden spade slicing into my foot(I knew you'd get that analogy; ) It was the most helpless I've ever felt that early in the morning in a very long time-maybe ever.(LOL) This whole scenario actually seemed to go on much longer and slower than my description here(really). I'm glad I can laugh about it now though. Oh and it gets worse,Chris doesn't immediately offer to zip over to Arabica down the road so I'm sulking, yet knowing very well I can go myself. Finally I mutter,"do you know what love is? It's when your wife has lost her last cup of coffee,is writhing in discomfort and you instinctively just know you gotta make a trip to Arabica for a capaccino with foam but no syrup and just a small one is fine"...I am TERRIBLE!!! And he went and got me one: ) Are you guys thinking what a snot? Yeah but we had a big laugh about it later and today when I was making coffee(that was FIRST on the shopping list)he said "but I was going to go get you coffee at Arabica's...."good save, Chris but a little late!lol

So anyway, Yes, Deanne I can get you a cutting and would love some of that variegated fuchsia. Gartenmeister has such great dark olive leaves. I know you'll find a great way to use it. Even being indoors in my cave of a house it flowers-it's interesting though because they get much more washed out and look peach instead of red-orange.
I have a polkadot plant cutting in a cup of water and the roots are almost two feet long!! Think I should pot it up?lol

LOL about those acrylic nails!!! I would be the same. I wore press on nails when I was younger and I used to trim them down so much because I felt like I couldn't do anything with my hands having them long;I don't know why I wore them! ALSO I stopped wearing them when once I was at a party and one popped off and I couldn't find it. For all I knew it was stuck somewhere in my hair or on my rear end or who knows where else. The silly things we do-shoulda used superglue to keep them on...lol

Sue-you're right idol is painful but some of those people have to know they can't sing. It's weird when they try to justify their flop or they blame things on the judges but it's quite obvious they just can't sing. I always know when someone is gonna make it-I get goosbumps hearing them. This time there doesn't seem to be many great singers-so far.

Amazing that T is getting our precipitation(and everyone else's!)-we are way below ave. I'm just waiting for the bottom to fall out here-we can't get through a whole winter with NO snow,can we?

Honey-thanks about my forum banner. I'm flattered that you think I have graphic design experience. I did start a degree in it but didn't feel it was a good fit for me. I'm not good with deadlines and high pressure in regard to my artistic side...I wonder if I'd be less whimpy now. Also back then I knew *nada* about computers-who knew I'd be able to type let alone post pics here. Sometimes I surprise myself.

I'm procrastinating(Deanne has taught me well?)so now I need to finish the prep for the luncheon,do laundry, & tend to Ryan-he woke up with a cold lastnight-I'm on booger patrol today.

Sorry for the fly-by I missed some comments I needed to make. They'll have to wait till later.

Hi Michelle!

Hey AJ got an A+ on his sci-project: )


p.s. Mary,lastnight I got out AJ's clarinet and somehow was able to locate my solo pieces from my contest days deep in a closet. Lol boy I must have been proficient then(the music seemed difficult!)-I'm not as good anymore and I could hardly see the music...I bet I need glasses. The cool thing was that my dad's writing is all over the music and it brought back fond memories of when he taught me each piece. I think I need to get back into playing my instrument for kicks.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 11:45AM
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Sorry you are sick V: (.....last one to get out of jammies and into presentable clothing wins-on your mark get set.......: )

...and I'm not even sick-it's just one of those days; )Get better dear...or just idyll all day. We'll call it the "V Show".


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 11:52AM
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V, sorry to hear that you are sick. I felt a sore throat starting last night, I am following Deannes advice and am using the Zicam.

When Rick asked if I was up to working in the bathroom, I couldnt turn him down. I want it done! We got the light/fan up, fixed the trap under the sink, worked on the subfloor and put on the new showerhead. Sounds impressive doesnt it.

Marie, I am looking for cabinet knobs for my bathroom vanity. Locally they are more than I want to pay. I need a liquidation place. I only need 6.

T, ouch on the diaper price. They sure are nice though. Funny but I have that feeling each time

I too miss all the missing Idylls.

Deanne, I too water my plants once a week. You have inspired me though. Last night I took a bunch of cuttings from my one remaining coleus Kiwi Fern. I place them under the fluorescent under cabinet lighting in the kitchen. I showed Rick your light stand and your beautiful plants. He was thinking that I should try it. He was coming up with several lights that we just have laying around, including the one that we took out of the bathroom. I have started seeds indoor a couple of years with just 1 8 light fixture. You all may get me interested again.

Babs, I had pineapple wizard last summer in several containers and really liked it. It was one that didnt survive the hail.

Mary, my children participated in a multi-school band and also choir which when they gave the concert was very impressive.

Wow, Sylvia 45 windows. Im sure glad that I dont have to clean those.

Martie, what a fun day you have planned. LOL

Babs, congrats to AJ A+ is fabulous. Sorry, but I did get a chuckle out of the coffee story.

Back to work


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 12:02PM
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gardeninbc(z8 PNW)

Hello everyone,
Thought I'd better check in. Deanne, I saw you mention my name twice and felt guilty I've been reading but haven't popped in to say hello.

We are all good but crazy crazy busy right now and I'm running on empty trying to keep it all together.

Just had the gloomiest and rainiest January on record - it rained 29 of the 31 days! and even the 2 days it didn't rain I believe it was mainly cloudy then too. So we've literally been living in the dark for over a month and a half. It is making even the most ardent PNWer depressed.

The evacuation alert was lifted a few days after it was issued but they continue to vigilantly watch the slope as we've had so much rain and Feb/Mar/Apr can also be very wet here. The upside to the rain is the skiing conditions are the best they've been in more than 10 years. Piles and piles of fluffy snow and we've been taking advantage of going after work and on weekends to enjoy the conditions.

I too am hoping that Taryn will pop in and update us on her house. Anxiously have my fingers crossed for her.

GB - sorry to hear about all the stress going on for you...I hope it improves soon.

T - congrats on the wonderful news. Twins is very exciting but makes me tired just imagining it. So happy to hear they were successful when they wanted a child so much.

Yeona - so you haven't floated away yet either?

Deanne - looking fabu fabu in that dress? You should feel very proud of yourself for all of the positive change you've accomplished. How is Doug's foot doing? Will you guys be back to dancing soon?

Well, now over an hour has passed and I still haven't been able to finish and post this.

Wanted to say, I love all the stories and pics of Bella and 'Kenzie. Fun to see how their 'grandmas' are enjoying them so much.

And I know I'm missing out on posting comments and encouragement to lots of others but I've got to get some of this work done. Hope to be back soon for a longer visit.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 12:17PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Just a quickie --
If I were using the alternative calendar I would declare it April 1 -- do you think that would work to bring Spring for certain?

Quick note re the Zicam -- not trying to start anything inflammatory (no pun intended) here but for people who may not have seen this info re the product (I had not until my DD sent it to me) -- Please check this out before using ....

    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 1:17PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Back again for a quick note-

Sue, on closer inspection, the Farrow & Ball paint COSTS A FORTUNE. I only need a small amount of it for above the cabinets so am plowing ahead. I primed the kitchen window today, a finicky project. Now to change from painting attire into my leather halter. Just kidding, I wouldn't do that to my friends....

    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 1:50PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

So glad that 'bug is not wearing a leather halter. Although our weather is almost mild enough to do that...

My fever just doesn't want to quit. And the sympathy is definitely lacking on the home front.

Babs, your coffee story had my chuckling. I can just see me ding something like that!

Also glad to hear that Barb is safe. Now if we could just get this weather to even out a bit!

Back to my book. To cheer me up, I am reading a novel about four people who want to commit suicide. :-0


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 3:03PM
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Fly-by note to myself.

Have a second cup of coffee before posting.

Chelone ... Never got to see the pics of your Christmas arrangements .... am out container looking and need some inspiration.

Night! Martie

    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 8:09PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

So now I can post without log in again, so will stop by to say I heard from Chelone and she is looking forward to a breathing space soon when her brother will care for their Mom. It is such a tough situation. One of her young kitties is off to the vet's which is always a concern.

Got a nice catalogue in the mail today, so may just do some serious research with it now. ;-)


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 8:38PM
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Woody_Canada(~USz5 - Canada)

I've been reading along but not feeling terribly communicative. I have enjoyed learning to play the banner game :-) on the other site. It's a promising site and I feel a bit more comfortable about pictures there but the conversation aspect hasn't developed there yet.

My mind is too scattered today to make much in the way of coherent comments on what has been happening here. T's exciting news about twins-to-come sticks in my mind as does Annie's stellar music performance. DH can identify with Honey's DH - my DH was one of those people escorted out about 10 years ago - actually, in his case, the whole place was closed down so they all got tossed at once! And, where he works now, has gone through regular down-sizing so it has happened around him a lot and it never gets easier to watch happen. ((Yeona)) such a lot to deal with...

The reason I'm a bit scattered tonight is we had the follow-up visit with my neuro-surgeon re my January MRI this afternoon. The brain tumor on the right (my 'good' side...) has grown 2mm. That's not a lot but it's a worry because it's the first time in 10 years or so that it has changed in size. The doctor will schedule another MRI in a year 's time to see how much it grows in that time. He will also schedule an appointment with a radiologist at the Gamma-knife unit (fancy radiation treatment that didn't used to be available in Canada but is now at the hospital where my doctor is..) to assess whether that is a possibility. It may not be because of the previous radiation I had in 1996. I have always been sure in my mind that that radiation was done improperly - I was the first patient on the equipment and the doctor and technicians had just finished their training. I should not have lost my hearing on the right side. It was explained as an auto-immune reaction - which is rare but possible - but I think the most likely explanation was that the dose or target was miscalculated because of inexperience. My doctor today said he thinks I'm probably right because he didn't see any radiation damage on the tumor he removed on the left (which was the tumor that was supposed to be targetted) and that the fact that the right side tumor has not grown before now may be because of radiation it received in 1996. If it was radiated in 1996, it may complicate, or even prevent, radiation treatment now. I asked him not to schedule an appoinment with the radiologist until the summer so I can have time to go to McMaster University medical library and do some research to see what current medical studies on my condition are saying. I go every few years and look up what is new so I can ask more relevant questions when I see the doctor(s). I also want to get my family doctor to refer me to a hematologist. There is an odd finding on my standard blood test that has shown up for a while now. Neither my family doctor or my specialist today knows what - if anything - it might mean in the context of my overall problems so I probably need to see a blood specialist to find out. If I'm going to worry about something, I might as well make sure I'm worrying about the right thing! (One possible interpretation of the blood finding is early stages of the leukemia that my mother died of...)

Sorry to be depressing on the end of the thread but I'm trying to absorb what all this means to me and writing it down helps me sort out my thoughts a bit.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 9:15PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Woody, would it make you feel better if you knew that your story makes me feel much better, despite a nagging fever that won't quit? I don't mean to sound flip, but I have found that the quickest cure for a pity party is to realize just how damn lucky you are after all. I do hope that you get some better news soon!

It's been a pretty quiet day of just reading, playing on the computer and then reading some more. I think I'll wrap it up and go to bed! I really need to be into work tomorrow to deal with payroll.

It will be nice to see Chelone back again. I miss her when she's busy with her mom.

Deanne, I'm getting pretty excited about the weekend of the 18th!!!


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 9:58PM
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((Woody)) Wow to have to wait and watch over such a long time span must be difficult. I'm sorry your initial radiation treatment was botched. Good for you that you are keeping ontop of the research behind whatever treatment you recieve-it does pay to know what the heck they are doing or what alternatives there might be. How unsettling that you were a 'practice run' of the newer radiation technique. Good luck with your decision making and research. As always we are here with support whether you are up or down so don't worry about that.

V are you better yet? Ryan caught your fever! I knew he was too close to the monitor; ) It was only a fever of 100.0 so hopefully it won't spike. The odd thing is that last year this time he was also sick with a fever...the day of the teacher's luncheon! How weird that it's almost to the date that he's sick like this. I am supposed to meet with commitee peeps tomorrow and do lunch monitoring all with Ryan under tow...not sure what will actually happen. The luncheon is Fri.

Michelle-I'll never forget those pics of the hail smothered plants you showed us. I'd send you a coleus...but Deanne has the only remaining live offspring of the ones I killed lol.

Time to hit the hay...


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 10:06PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Im sorry to hear V, Michelle and others are under the weather - felt that way myself last week. Dug into bed & vegged for 2 days on the weekend and managed to "kick" it - hope you guys can do the same.

Woody, of course, you must be concerned and wrapped up in this most recent news -- and sounds like it's something you'd like to have it all checked out sooner than later. Im a bit surprised that the dr. did not suggest another MRI in 6 months? rather than a year? I only know this because my SIL had an brain "anomaly" discovered last year just 6 months after they were married -- it was in fact orginally suggested to be a vestibular neuroma (weird thing I'd never heard of til we started researching) - one of the treatments is the Gamma Knife as is another of somewhat similar type laser surgery. The point to all this that I've been trying to make is that the physicians at Johns Hopkins have been doing MRI every 3 & 6 months - lo and behold it did not grow any and other MRIs confirmed it was not a tumor nor the type originally hypothesized (it was extremly small)... & the other point re the gamma/surgery treatments here in the States we were told that success is made all the more likely -- key question is how much experience & how many of those types has the surgeon/ center done - this is key. So, I guess if I were to try to make you feel a bit better would be to say -- you've got time to investigate these various options and places -- and I hope you do. And perhaps it's possible to push for MRI in 6 months instead? Not being familiar with the health care system in Canada, I realize I may be saying things that are not possible -- but just thoughts. It sounds like you know how to take the proactive stance in any case & Im sure you'll go in the right directions. In the meantime, I quite understand why you would find it hard to want to chatter or even think of gardening -- altho we know that helps us all in comfort and distraction. Thinking good thoughts for you.

Babs - I've had a bad coffee morning - but that's quite something -- but you've got that DH trained real well!!!! What a swell he is! Wow. And glad you guys could laugh all about it.

Guess the rest of us are waiting to hear about MartieinLeather's Day....? How'd it go w/o the halter?

    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 10:08PM
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Woody.......thinking of you!

It has been a quiet day here, nothing to share.

Just thought I'd send my best to Woody and the rest of the Idylls.....


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 10:18PM
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Sugars! V, hope you feel better soon and Babs.....hope Ryan gets better soon too!

Anyone else that is feeling punky? Hope you feel better soon too! My memory is rotten!

g'night again....


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 10:28PM
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(((Woody))) hey, we are here for you. Were your friends and care very much about the difficulties that you face. Please write it out to us if that helps you.

Barb, glad that you popped in. How great that there is a positive side to all the rain.

Cindy, thanks for the Zicam info. Figures just when you find something that might work.

Looking forward to Chelone posting again when she gets her break.

Get well to V and Ryan and I hope those who are in a funk feel better too.

Gosh, I got a new printer and the thing talks to me. It tells me to add more paper and when it is starting and finished. How weird.

During my lunch hour I went to my parents house to check it. They are in Texas. I spent a little time in a shop called The Garden Gate. It is a fun place to shop. The owner is a long time friend of my sister and a very creative person. The place is an old farm with 3 floors of decorative items.

Good night all


    Bookmark   February 1, 2006 at 11:34PM
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Woody_Canada(~USz5 - Canada)

Thanks for the good thoughts. It's a little hard to get focused yet. On the one hand, I was sort of expecting something like this but , on the other hand, it still throws you for a loop! Cindy - these are slow-growing tumors that rarely metastasize so one doesn't have to rush into decisions and annual MRI's are usually fine once the nature of the thing is established. Back in 1990 when they were first diagnosed, I had MRIs every few months but it became obvious that they were the slow-growing type so it was not necessary to monitor them so often. It was 6 years after the diagnosis before I had the radiation and 8 years before I had the surgery. It is now 8 years after the surgery and 16 years from the initial diagnosis. The right side tumor has essential been dormant for all that time so it is disquieting but not surprising that it has finally 'woke up'. It's a bit nerve-wracking though to live with ticking time bombs in your head for so long. I wish spring was closer - I'm in need of distraction!

    Bookmark   February 2, 2006 at 7:18AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Morning all,

Woody, so sorry for your continued troubles. ((((Woody))))). You know we are all here for you.
You are such a strong person and I've always admired your positive attitude not to mention your determination to be educated on all the aspects of your condition. Thanks for sharing with us. Your situation makes me count my blessings and focus on what is important in life.

Michelle, you made my day! How neat you are thinking of a light garden. It really makes the winter more fun to have all those green things to take care of, I'd be happy to send you lots of coleus. I'll go and root a few more cuttings today.

V Me Too!!!!!I've already started to excavate this house in preparation. I still haven't planned a menu yet but whatever it is will be good and the company will be better. I sure hope you are feeling better today. I'm hoping you've gotten your winter viruses over with so there won't b any problem with your visit. BTW that is the weekend of the NHOS Orchid show. Would you be interested in coming with me?

Cindy, I'd heard about that situation with the Zicam. I've been using the product for two years and haven't had any problems with it. It actually does shorten the duration of my colds big time. I wonder if it is just the product that you spray or swab your nose with? I use the chewable tablets. I'll have to do a bit of research on this.

Barb, thank you for checking in. The last we'd heard waw that you were on the evacuation alert and then nothing so my imagination was going wild. Glad to hear all is OK except for the lousy weather. How great you are taking advantage of the great skiing though. I think Sue needs to go out for a visit.

Hi Babs, Sorry Ryan is sick. HOw is MIL doing now? Is she able to start using her prosthetics again?~~ Let me know if you can't find that PW coleus variety and I'll send some and whatever else you'd like when it warms up.

OK time to get off this computer, get to the Post Office, get to the gym and get painting. I'm working on a Monarch butterfly. I might have already mentioned that but I don't have time to check.

Have a great day everyone,

    Bookmark   February 2, 2006 at 8:11AM
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I was looking for info on Pella doors..? What on earth does this have to do with home improvement?????

    Bookmark   February 1, 2008 at 11:05AM
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