Idyll # 401 - Tinges of Color, Hints of Change

saucydog(z5MA)September 21, 2008

Every day that passes brings change to my landscape. I do love this crisp time of year :)

Carry on....

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Here's what I see out my window this morning (facing East, obviously)....and it futher solidifies my resolve to cut that darned tree down (the one to the right in the photo).....

I'm dressing in layers to begin my day out of doors....I'm sure I'll need to shed a few once the muscles get warmed up :)

Have a great day, all.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 9:22AM
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Yup, Marian, I'm with you, doll! My heart was much gladdened by 'bug's post, too. :)

Nolon would've felt right at home here the past few days. We have a dreadful "iron" issue in our water, but have recoiled from the filtration systems that employ very toxic compounds to "tie it up". So, we deal with "red" rings and periodic use of CLR on faucet screens, shower heads, etc.. Anyway, the valve in the toilet tank has been cranky for over a year, the time required to refill the tank after a flush was about forever. Helpmeet "laughed it off" one to many times by Friday night. I awakened on Saturday morning to find it had been leaking all night long (in addition to 4 hrs. on Friday night, nothing pops my cork faster than wasting water). The repair required 20 minutes and $15. Good thing we waited so long to actually fix it, huh?

I moved my "Ruby Spice" clethra to a very sunny location, Ei., though the soil is very rich and quite moist (as it is nearly everywhere on the Compound). I'll watch it carefully next season, to see if it's too sunny. It was formerly in a location that seemed to shady and was probably too dry. The kitty in the picture is Polly (or Poly, because she has double paws up front). She's "Daddy's girl"; beautiful face and a very loving personality though being outdoors is presently her main goal in life. Daddy is innordiantly proud of what he calls her "tuck", the nipped in area just ahead of her hind quarters. She is long, lean, and supple. Winter finds her contentedly indoors, plumper than in summer, and more "snuggley" than in warmer weather.

Is anyone keeping track of the Idyll Camp curriculum? the birdbath addition is a terrific one, BTW. So is soap making. Something that really comes across is how practical and resourceful you guys are. Seems to be a common thread in this group, one I admire greatly. 'bug's question has me thinking, though... should we actually contemplate such whimsy?

Saucy, I am in no way surprised at the success of your tufa clinic; assisted so ably by Sunny D how could it have been anything less than a raving success? What great news and you must be so very pleased by it all.

I am not dialled in to the National League, but DID note the Cubbies' good result (Scott Simon must be pleased)! Our beloved Sox appear to be doing their usual late season thing, but they did win the World Series as a "wild card", so hope remains. With all due respect, Kathy, wouldn't it be great to see the Cubs prevail after 100 yrs. out in the cold? My dream series? Red Sox and Chicago Cubs... I'd be a winner, either way. Do you own the Ken Burns series, "Baseball", BTW? (we do and we watch it periodically, delighting in it every time). Wish he'd do one on Thoroughbred and/or Standarbred racing!

The last show of the season was "Les Miserables". Neither of us cared for it. The sets, costumes, and production was very good. But we didn't care for the music and agreed that we were ready to go home about 2/3rds. through the first act. We both like drama, so the dark aspect of the show wasn't the reason we didn't care for it; in fact, we like the movie version very much. It was tedious and tiring. I will be unlikely to sit through another production of it again. But we'll be signed up for "our" seats again next year.

I think I may be the winner of the fewest containers, too, if you don't count the windowboxes (8). Aside from those, we have only 2 containers.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 10:13AM
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Saucy, your photo looks like a painting. What a nice view! I would love your friend's soap recipe.

PM2, I also love to get soap from Marshalls. They have a great selection. I don't think I have ever gotten one I didn't like, so just experiment.

Ei, I love your bird baths, too. This summer Dev and I went with Skip sometimes while he was working, and one of places we went was a Home Goods in Kentucky. I got the coolest glass bowl/plate similar to what you have. Now I want to make it into a bird bath:) I think I will leave it on the coffee table till spring, then convert it.

Thanks for the advice about bringing in plants. I never know if I should take a cutting, or bring in the pot on some of these things.

This morning we had pancakes and ham for breakfast. I usually cook a big breakfast on Sunday, and whoever happens to be around stops over to eat. Last night Skip and Dev picked up something called Organic Pancakes in what looks like a Redi Whip can. I told the boys they can buy those anytime they want. Just push the button and they come out. Much easier than adding eggs, milk, etc from scratch. Apparently they tasted like they had been salted, and when I turned them over, they deflated. I personally didn't eat any, but Skip said, just FYI, I didn't like them. He can eat anything, so they must be bad:) Not even the Cracker Barrel syrup could help.
Today we are going to clean up the yard from last Sunday's wind storm. We have branches down all over, and Skip has been gone this week. I look forward to working outside while it isn't humid. Love these crisp days.

That is about it for me today. Hope you all enjoy your Sunday.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 10:14AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Perfect shot Saucy. I like the tree...

I'm wearing long sleeves and a vest over the top. 57F here this morning.

I've had a cold so things are moving slowly. Hard to know what is grief and what is germs...but the result isn't great no matter. I love Fall, so it goes hand in hand with our contemplative mood this year.

Yesterday I tried to take some photos, but my USB connector is missing. Perhaps the cats hid it? DH will try to locate another for me when he returns from his meeting this morning. Then I'll try to share some garden highlights.

Sarah and DSIL are up north at the annual general meeting of the North Country Fair. They are giving input into the plan for a new stage and playground in Reed's honor. There is already a benefit concert planned for the end of December. It is good for them to be active now. They are both taking care of each other and have wonderful support. But oh my heart...the road is long and difficult for all.

Looking out my window I see goldenrod and agastache. The grasses are showing their influorescenses and asters are blooming as well. Monarch butterflies are all over the buddleia and caryopteris is very blue. Japanese anemones are beautiful and 'Charlotte' is a favorite of course!

I see mowing and raking in my future, once the dew disappears.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 10:15AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

It is almost time for us to go, but I will answer Ei's question about my Clethra. It is in the low spot with the Bald Cypress. It gets a lot of afternoon sun. It seems very happy there. The excess rainfall this year has prompted it to put out a lot more growth...perhaps I should water it more in dry years?

LOL, Chelone...2 containers. Do you have any indoors? I know you asked for some good choices.

Bye for now...


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 10:21AM
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Meant to tell Drema how nice it is to see her "resurface", too. I always forget the important stuff, but am mistress of the trivial.

I finished "Innocent Traitor" by Alison Weir. Enjoyed it very much, too. Lady Jane Grey is a fascinating historical figure.

MARY: I have two titles for you:
"The Woodland Garden, Planting in Harmony With Nature" (revised edition) by Roy Forster and Alex Downie c.2004, Firefly Books

"The Woodland Garden" by Robert Gillmore, c.1996, Taylor Publishing

I preferred the first one and will share either with you if you'd like. Let me know. How's Clousseau these days?

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 10:29AM
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It's so good to see you here, 'bug. Mowing and raking sound like perfect ways to use time right now.

Nothing exciting or new here. Lots of biz traveling in my future so will be in and out for the next few weeks. Did manage to deadhead a lot yesterday, and shrubs have been root pruned for their various moves. Still pretty mucky to replant at this point despite no rain for all week (a record this summer!!!)

Sue summed up the general environment around here and yes, I have been tired for absolutely no reason. The changes in Vitamin D, methinks.

I'm now convinced that once Kenzie gets introduced to tropicals, Michelle will need a greenhouse ASAP since they'll be "musthaves, Gramma!!" I'm not a huge Florida fan, but where else can you find 2 gal 4' tall tropicals for $4 at Walmart?? Kenzie can have a jungle all her own.

Add me to a Burpee catalog reader at a young age. I remember the first one that came out in color!!! My dear Grandmother called it a "waste of resources because the descriptions, if well written, shouldn't need a picture at all." She was way ahead of her time......

Will bring my camera to NC State Arboretum but won't be spending much time there, I'm afraid. Next trip....

Thinking of everyone always, and so proud to be part of this incredibly insightful, smart and precious group.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 10:31AM
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Must be off to the various grocery spots, but will post pics as requested PM !

No b-4 of this one, but I swapper it out too. It had a dwarf Phormium in it which was way too small for the size of the pot. Replaced with two white snaps, and a 'Chidori White' flowering kale. Mono-potted the Phormium.


After ! Two "Pigeon Red' flowering kale, Pansies, ornamental Oxalis,and a Pennisetum rubrum in the center.

Enjoying this mornings posts !

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 11:58AM
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This is NOT one of the containers, just a much refined close up of the first storey windowboxes:

We didn't get the "new" windowboxes up until just before the 4th. of July, and we planted on or about that day. Our dear Saucy reminded me that keeping things "consistently alive" was the object of the planter game. How right she was! Simple use of plants suited to the conditions greatly enhances the odds of success. I really needed your vote of confidence at the time we planted these, Saucy,

Marian, I STILL have no houseplants, lol, but since there is no "window of opportunity" I am not too concerned. ;)

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 12:37PM
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Back so soon!!!! But excited....

Ky showed up (must've been the promise of food to take home), rallied the troops, and shrubs are moved. Forgive the combo of Latin and plain names, but 3 Quince, the Malus pendulous 'Louisa', two Clematis 'Betty Corning', an entire huge and scary-thorns Rugosa, one Viburnum 'Blue Muffin', a rhodo and what I think might be an Elderberry have been moved. Ditto a few grasses that were supposed to be dwarf (right), various Digitalis, various daisies, chives, Sedums of ill repute (too much shade) and some self-sown red Potentilla. Whew!

Done in 1 hour and done well, I might add. The neighborhood kids are really getting in sinc with all of this and it was very cool to hear various male levels of voices laughing.

Dug, planted, watered, remulched.

Yes, for today life is very, very good.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 2:11PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Martie, can I borrow your son and neighbor boys??? I sure do need them.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 2:29PM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

I hesitate to post this. So far today I have posted on the wrong thread, lost a post, and wrote one and never hit send. In my defense, DH had an 'I can't find my...' emergency and I got distracted.

I was so excited to see 'soap lovers' that I posted on the other thread. Check it out is you're looking for a fun way to spend winter.
Speaking of ways to pass the time this winter, the Garden Rant Blog is interesting. I love the MANIFESTO:


We Are:

Convinced that gardening MATTERS.

Bored with perfect magazine gardens.

In love with real, rambling, chaotic, dirty, bug-ridden gardens.

Suspicious of the "horticultural industry."

Delighted by people with a passion for plants.

Appalled by chemical warfare in the garden.

Turned off by any activities that involve "landscaping" with "plant materials."

Flabbergasted at the idea of a "no maintenance garden."

Gardening our asses off.

Having a hell of a lot of fun.

Time to go finish mowing. Enjoy the reast of the weekend.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 2:55PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Photo Therapy

Clematis Sizaia Ptitza:

Two mystery clematis I grew from seed:

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 4:03PM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

OK, so I'm not "Bored with perfect magazine gardens". Maybe they are jealous? ;)

I love perfect gardens, alas mine will never qualify. LOL

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 4:06PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Marie, I love your pics. So, what are you going to name the mystery clems ? Do you think they are crosses?

Jerry, I like the Manifesto, espacially the 3rd and 5th on the list. :-)

I just slathered my feet and ankles with more Calamine lotion. This late summer's bug bites are itching worse than normal. I am not sure whether they are chigger, or seed ticks, or both...maybe with a few skeeters thrown in. :-( Some are on my wrists and other arm areas, and higher on my legs than the ankles. Thank goodness, this too shall pass, but I am becoming minus parts of my skin from scratching !

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 4:19PM
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Martie, I'm thrilled for you. It all can seem so overwhelming when you list it all, and yet, when it's all finished it's so gratifying. Your kid is a "keeper"... make sure Jake and Matthew read this Saucy and Lisa! :)

A quiet day on the Compound; leisurely lunch with the helpmeet, some "ball" with the huge one, and some "communing" with the felines when the canine retired "with two" (2 balls that he carries off in his craw) "to guard". "Guarding" is very important to Rex, it means hanging around and keep an eye on things. It involves barking, sometimes posturing (sometimes with the full "Mohawk"). And, unhappily for Mummy and Daddy, the occasional uncontrolled full, frontal assault on some unlucky passerby. For which we offer no excuse but quick intervention, and an apology. Mercifully, he's pretty good at "guarding" and usually leaves it at the warning percolations and a few barks. If you lived nearby, Cynthia, we'd have long since "met" you and your fleet of Greys would be "old hat". ;)

The foxes are vocal earlier in the evening now that the sun is down earlier. Makes me nervous. I was never really worried about foxes until Bobby Lee was attacked. Still, he was old and visibly failing and was probably an easy mark for Foxy Loxy. We strive to have the feline crowd indoors by sundown. The risk remains, however, but we have decided to minimize it and endure it as best we're able.

We have more "lumbering" on the docket for tomorrow, at least that's what I was told this morning! I'm OK with it. We're going to begin stacking the newly split wood alongside the west side of the bahn. Naturally, I'd rather see a graceful, elegant planting there but we need a place to stack such bounty and SO BE IT. The reality of our lives is that we are workin' slobs who by good fortune live in a very POSH neighborhood and making efficient use of of available sunny areas for the storage of firewood is nicely in keeping with prudent upbringings. The guy who drives the oil delivery truck remarked admiringly at the amount of cordwood we had split and stacked when he was here last week. ;)

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 4:33PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

No names for the clematis. I'll just enjoy them Marian. I think the seed came from the International Clematis Society...but I'm not sure. With clematis seed, you never can be sure what the outcome will be unless you take precautions and bag seedheads at appropriate times, hand pollinate, etc....and I'm not up to the finicky stuff.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 4:49PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

I started a post yesterday, didn't get it posted, and now I think that much of what I believe I already "said" is only in my head.

We've had a great "last hurrah of summer" weekend. Yesterday evening we had a hayride and dinner at my BIL's parents farm. When the tractor brought the wagon over the hill to the edge of the woods where we were dining, it looked like something out of Martha's magazine. Haybale "tables" had bright tablecloths draped over them, torches in the middle, and small pumpkins full of fall flowers on top. The trees were strung with tiny lights and hung with jars holding votive candles. It was a gorgeous night and lots of fun.

Today, we took part in a 6 mile canoe trip on one of the local rivers. It was a cool, foggy morning when we started but great weather overall for paddling.

Ei, I love your birdbaths, and you have me inspired to look for a bowl for my white garden.

I'm all for idyll camp becoming a reality. We could have evening design charettes where one of us brings in a garden design problem and we all work out a suggested solution. And book discussions, too! Perhaps we need a month, Chelone?

'bug, it's good to see you posting again. Gardens help to heal.

I collected a lot of prairie seeds yesterday which will be spread later this fall in other areas I think I shall go clean seeds for a little bit.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 4:57PM
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jak1(4 Ontario Can)

Good Boring Sunday to you all!

I went to choir practice on Thursday night and it was so miserable that I decided I couldn't force myself to church this morning. The choir is preparing a recital of some Brahms Concerto. Brahms was a genius. He managed to compose (I almost wrote 'compost'. Freudian slip) an extremely long piece of music in four parts, with each and every part being non-melodic, weirdly timed and impossible to sing, that sounds absolutely wonderful when all the parts are put together. I think I will pass on the singing part and go to the concert and listen....

Also, couldn't get the hostas and the peonies out - they are HUGE, so dug out some littler stuff and went to DD's for a barbecue on Friday. Left Adrian there overnight and spent Saturday doing nothing. My two goals for Saturday were to tidy up the deck and to put away Adrian's pool, and those got done. But I left the house to the Phils, and it looked like a bomb had hit it this morning. So today I spent the whole day cleaning, washing floors, disinfecting bathrooms (Inter P woofed his cookies after a night of over imbibing, although cleaned up, it made my toes curl so I really did a number on that bathroom. I know, Too Much Information....). I made a big lasagna for dinner and cut back the rest of the chard for salad. I also caught up on laundry. So now you all understand my introductory comments...

Tomorrow I hope to fininsh the bricks, and maybe I will hire my neighbourhood garden helper to get those big honkin' hostas out of there. I have told DH that I need about 15 bags of triple mix, especially for the bed that the garlic will be planted in at Thanksgiving. His hand is slow to heal so DS will have to pitch in.

Thanks a bunch for the pic of the Pulsatilla. As I suspected, I have been assiduously weeding it out of the front garden, which is exactly where I want it to grow.

The back yard looks worse than ever - I am determined to get the front the way I want it before I tackle the back; it might be next Spring before I get back there!

'Bug, your photos are stunning! And mowing and raking are indeed therapeutic activities. I remember autumns when I raked for seven weeks, just to have something to occupy myself physically while I tried to get my head around unthinkable things....

I may win the "fewest container" award: two hanging planters at the front; three teeny geraniums on the outside entrance wall, one big planter on the front patio, two nice hanging things on the shed, a big Hibiscus by the pond, otherwise, all a bunch of orchids and house plants that never get any attention other than being moved out in the spring and back in, in the fall. I may even have a few pictures somewhere of some of these...but you all are tired of that story I'm sure.

Sr. P just informed me that the Ryder Cup is over so we can now all sit doen for a nice glass of wine and rehash every stroke. I sure hope there is something good on t.v. tonight! And Saucy, I am checking the mailbox every day for mag. I can hardly wait! Inspiration yeahoo!

Cheers a;;.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 5:28PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good evening all,

Well as Doug says Ive lit the drinking lamp and am currently enjoying a very dry, Tangueray 10 martini, straight up, with jumbo, garlic stuffed olives. YUM! My brain was completely fried from eight hours of painting and I had to quit for the day.

IÂve been relegated to the basement until further notice. EuuuuwwwÂ.. We had a gorgeous day and I was down here painting. Yes, painting. I still remember how. I know IÂm whining but boy does this work thing cuts into my gardening time. LOL I donÂt know how all you stalwart people with full time jobs keep a garden going and work full time. I just have to keep reminding myself that IÂm earning that Canon lens IÂve been working toward for the last three years.

I told my students weÂd start a new series of charger plates and instead of fruit this time we are painting plates with flowers and fuchsias. This one has a ÂFirst Prize rose with Fuchsia ÂChristinaÂ. It should be pretty when finished but as with acrylic painting it is currently going through its ugly stage. So anyway, IÂm teaching this piece on Friday so IÂd best finish it up sometime soon. Yikes!

Saucy, love your Am misty fall shot. Gorgeous. So glad to hear your tufa class went well.

Ei. Love, love, love your birdbaths! They are stunning. Sounds like our project for Idyll Camp I. Â If you get around to it IÂd love one of those baby-variegated agaves. They are wonderful.

Chelone, so, do you even realize what youÂve started?????

Bug, wonderful to hear from you and see your lovely photographs. Imagine if you will that there is a supportive net under you, sending positive and loving thoughts your way. WeÂre here. If you need anything you can think of that we can do just holler.

Kathy, canÂt see your pics for some reason. IÂve got a Phormium in a mixed container that isnÂt doing really well and IÂm thinking IÂm going to give it a space of its own next summer.

Martie, how great you got all those shrubs moved.

Jerri, sorry to say that IÂm never bored with perfect garden magazines. I aspire to that state all the time.

V. pics of the canoe trip???? Sounds lovely.

OK IÂve got to get upstairs and do something about dinner. Have a great evening all.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 5:43PM
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I meant Saucy and WENDY.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 5:50PM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

Deanne, you missed my second post. I think they are just jealous, especially with your place! :)

I should have put in a disclaimer: I don't agree with the whole manifesto. The Blog has some interesting entries though.

I'm off to meditation tonight. I can use the extra session.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 5:52PM
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Yeah, Deanne, the scariest part is that I DO. I think it could be a wicked lot of fun but it will require a lot of advance planning. And I'll need a lot of help.

I ran it by the helpmeet and he was very obliging, though I suspect he has no real idea of the complexities required. He's all for FUN and if the details are fairly well ironed out he'll just roll along. Meaning, we (YOU) will have have to deal with food. But if there's a PARTY? he'll be there, charming, and we'll have a total blast. I'm good at details and if we get it all figured out I can do this! May be best to take this down about 3 fathoms from now on, you guys. ;)

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 6:14PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Deanne, I don't have a dry bag for the camera and was too chicken to take it out on the water. It would be just my luck to destroy my camera right before our big trip. So no canoe trip photos. But if the man who took our pic as we approached the take out was a news photog, I'll share that one.

In the meantime, here's a photo from last night's festivities. We were all playing bags at the time, but you can see the tables, torches, etc.

And here's DBIL driving the tractor:

These guys wondered where we were taking all that hay:

Don't worry, he stayed off the roads!

The city idyllers would be interested to know that those tire tractors are taller than me. (The country idyllers knew that already.)

Chelone, I can help with food prep!


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 7:06PM
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Those suckers are HUGE.

Best wishes from the land of Lilliputians.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 7:27PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Those would be tractor tires, not tire tractors! :)

V. the tire(d)

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 7:57PM
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A pleasant Sunday evening friends- perfect transitional weather here, I puttered about, read the Sunday Chronicle and stared indecisively at the bedding plants I bought yesterday. I managed to plant one 6-pak of Snaps, wondering all the while why I continue to plant them each fall and rip them out each spring, mumbling never again in disgust when they invariably become covered with rust. Sigh. So I bought 3 6-packs, two different varieties- Sonnet and La Bella (Eden needs some of these !). Sonnet gets rust, but usually makes it to late spring, and Ive never grown La Bella. We shall see. I also got some Iceland poppies for my annual corner in front, and I will also put English primrose there. Going to go with some heavy Pansy action too, but have not decided my color scheme for that yet.

Deanne, I think I made a boo-boo when posting those pics, so Ill re-post them tomorrow. I suspected that they would be un-viewable. Lol, the Drinking Lamp .

Saucy, you would indeed have quite a view with that tree gone ! Although it is lovely as it is. My view is either the back or the sides of other peoples houses, lol.

Ei no Gunnera here ..Id love one but I think it would take up my entire back garden . Hey those birdbaths may have been easy to do , but I admire the imagination and visioning that led you to try it in the first place. See the link below..

Chelone, Idyll summer camp: piggy backed on IU 6, 2 days of classes at camp (with evening campfires of course) and two days of gardens. Voila !
Fear not, if the Dodgers make it to the playoffs it is very doubtful they will advance beyond the first round. The Cubs have a solid chance, and will be my back up team once the Boys in Blue choke.

Ok V, what is Bags ???

Ahh, beautiful new pics from bug. Wonderful shot of the butterfly. Wholly support the garden as therapy.

Martie, better take your laptop and make sure your hotels on the road have internet access- what better way to spend boring evenings in hotel rooms than Idylling ?? You can give us reporter on the road critiques of the landscaping. What a bunch of stuff you moved today You are going to have one nice garden going when everything settles in.

Ok Julie, you can teach us a song at Idyll summer camp. Then we can have several cocktails and sing it around the campfire .

Marian, last night I dreamed that I struck up a conversation with a gentleman sitting next to me on a train, and it turned out to be Nolan ! He was holding a box on his lap full of plumbing fittings and wearing a Seattle Mariners baseball cap. The things our brains come up with while we are asleep !

Wheres Denise ???

Ta ra !

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 8:09PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Reminds me of Lynn's daughter's outdoor wedding V...Lots of hay bales, flowers and fun.
Yesterday we bought pumpkins, including a baby one. (We were advised to start traditions around this awful business.) They are sweet and add color to the place.

Deanne thanks for the supportive net...kind of like a hammock! Just being there and allowing me to prattle on seems to be what I need- today at least. Even those simple repetitive chores like raking and mowing seem to sap energy from me these days, but at least I am moving along. Forums are easier than curious people descending and expecting tea and conversation.

Phoebe is eating her regular food again...but doesn't want me to watch her! She enjoys running wild while we work outdoors and has been a great companion for us. What a goof! Of course Woody's cookies are still a great reward for any good behavior. ;) She really was a good girl watching from the porch as I mowed.

Julie, you have way too much energy!!!! Glad DD gave you a day's rest from your young Phil in training.

You guys are going to be so sick of me...

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 8:21PM
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Good evening

V - those are cool photos indeed!

Chelone - thank you for your book suggestions. So the Idyll camp is a actually a possibility? How fun would that be:0) I could teach "Grotto Making 101", "How to color coordinate your wardrobe around your underwear", "Fun with Peeps" amongst others LOL! Count me in to help with the food, provide music or whatever. Clouseau is in fine form though I'd love you here to trim his nails.

GB - gorgeous photos. So good to hear from you again.

Saucy - your misty morning is just lovely and brings to mind "Season fo Mists and mellow fruitfulness..."

Today was a little disjointed after driving David downtown for a guitar lesson with his new teacher, only to find he had left for a concert tour at 4 AM this morning. Darn:0( On returning home I put the extra time to good use with some much needed cleaning. I was saved from the monotony of housework when a friend stopped by for tea and a chat. As it was rainy I spent the rest of the afternoon in the kitchen, listening to music and cooking up a storm with ingredients from the market and garden. I made fresh corn chowder, eggplant caponata, tomato, smoked mozarella and basil salad, bread sticks and almond biscotti. All came out yummy.

I need to chase David into the bath (given his druthers he would wash his hair bi-annually) before settling down in from of the TV with multiple loads of laundry. Hope there is soemthing entertaining on.

Nite all!


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 8:26PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Kathy, bags has become a staple of any outdoor gathering around here. It's a (barely) glorified beanbag toss game. You have two boards with holes cut in the center that sit up on a slight angle. Three corn-filled bean bags per side. You usually play with two teams of two. Any bag that lands on the board and stays on gets one point, and a bag that goes in the hole gets three points. Although I generally am a total athletic failure, I can play a decent game of bags.

I forgot to mention that usually the boards are painted with your favorite sports team's logo.

'bug, we'll never get sick of you! I long have thought that the best thing about the forum is that it's here whenever you need/want it. Lots of friends & family who love you dearly would be less than pleased if you called at 2:00 am because you felt lonely, but no one bats an eye if you post here in the middle of the night. And we don't care if your house is clean, or your hair is combed or if you are wearing week-old pj's.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 9:02PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

A lovely last day of the summer eve here. The crickets are serenading us. I have only the front door open, but can hear them as I type.

Chelone, I am envious of your foxes. We never had a problem with 'ours' bothering the cats. We haven't seen one for a few years now... I miss them.
I am also envious of all who may be able to participate in the Idyll camp...if it materializes. It sounds like so much fun.

V, Your canoe trip sounds so fun. I have never done that. Too bad there will no pics from you, but I certainly understand. I am even reluctant to take my camera to town.
I love the pics of your festivities. Looks like a great time was had by all. I am curious also as to what 'bags' is. Oh...okay, I see your answer to Kathy on the other page that I have open.

Kathy, I chuckled to myself at your dream. Now I must tell could not have been Nolon unless he had overalls on. ;-) There would be no problem with the cap. He only wears caps, and he isn't picky about what they say on them, as long as it is a 'clean', non political saying. :-)

Marie, there is no way we are going to be sick of you ! Ditto to what V said....

Mary, can I come eat with you?
LOL, on David's druthers..i.e. washing his hair bi-annually.

Julie, sorry your Sunday was boring. I have enjoyed all of mine :-), although it was the same as we always spend our Sunday. Nothing exciting, but satisfying.

Nolon is in bed...probably sawing logs. It will not be long before I follow suit. I hope to get all the lawn mowed tomorrow. A lot of it is going to seed ! I will don my sulfur powered clothing, to fend off the biting beasties. My feet and legs are finally less itchy, and I sure do not want another round!

Night all...

Oh, I almost forgot...Ei, add me to all the admirers of your birdbaths. We have enough standing water in our place, that birdbaths are not really needed, but yours are sure lovely.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 9:36PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Tired tonight from dashing around in useless attempts to stay ahead of the curve but I just wanted to jump in say how nice it is to see Marie posting and sharing. Post and share away-we're here for you.

CT plant swap today. It's a fun time-lots of conversation and good food. I managed to off a few plants and didn't come home with a thing. Spent a few hours this afternoon and yesterday afternoon on fall cleanup. Didn't make a dent. The gas company will be digging up my front yard sometime during the week of October 20th to install the line for my new furnace. I need to get out there before that and move anything I value that looks to be in harm's way.

OK, my bed is calling and the dogs are staring at me for their "time for tinkles" cookie. lol



    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 9:38PM
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Ok V, I like athletic events that require no particular athletic skill (such as walking really fast) So, 1st Idyll World Champion Bags Tournament at summer camp. Deanne can paint flowers around the holes and we can play Bags and drink gin and tonics etc simultaneously. See what important info you learn on the Idylls???

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   September 21, 2008 at 9:54PM
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In the spirit of "under the same moon", at 11:42EST this morning everyone look at the Sun and think: Happy Autumnal Equinox!!!!

Your pics are such eye candy, Marie, and I really like the unnamed pink Clematis. So glad Phoebe is bringing some delight :-)

I can't see Kathy's pics, either :-(

Hope the foray from fruit to flowers works well, Deanne!

V: Happy Anniversary whenever it is! For a moment I thought the "tables" would be round bales on their sides and how the heck would one reach the top to eat?? LOL

I'm with most of the Manifesto but also must admit to really enjoying gardening mags. Always something to aspire to.

Mary: While gardens were being dis/reassembled did some major cooking, too. What is it about cool September mornings that brings out the big kitchen pots? LOL about David's hair.

Chelone: Do you know what you'd be getting yourself into?? LOL Bet the helpmeet would love it all, especially considering the number of offers to cook.

More comments to be made but an early-in to the office is a necessity today. Everyone have great days and don't forget 11:42am :-)


    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 7:04AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Good morning....Monday again :-)

What a busy place here this weekend. I tried catching up a couple of times, but we were either in the garden or I was too tired to type. [g] We had a very productive weekend. Not as productive as Martie, :-) but satisfying none the less.

Martie...any chance you could offer a class at the Idyll Camp on how to mesmerize neighborhood children into helping move shrubs and perennials? [g] That is quite a talent!! Very excited for you...that will put you in good standing come the spring.

Saucy....I just love your photo of what you see from your window. Excellent view! I would be very happy to have it too.

Drema.....that is great to know about Marshall's...I will have to try some other soaps if I don't see the one I have.

We used to do Chocolate Chip/Banana pancakes when the kids were little. Very rarely any more. Occassionally I will have Buckwheat/Blueberry with a handful of chocolate chips in them and real maple syrup. With just water and Buckwheat flour, no eggs or milk. I love them! Very high in fiber.

G'bug....I love Fall too. I love the low humidity and back to sweaters and turtlenecks in the crisp air. The couple who clean our house are originally from South America and they were not liking the drop in temperature to 50 They are already counting the days until winter, dreading it.

I am also enjoying the fall plants. We took a ride last weekend to a nursery about an hour away and along the roadways, wild asters and goldenrod were blooming and it was particularly pretty this year, because of all the rain we've had, everything is looking so green. I enjoyed one scene of a pretty grouping of conifers with a skirt of the goldenrod and asters around their feet so much, that I came home trying to figure if I could do that in our garden anywhere. Unfortunately, after reading up more on Goldenrod, I decided to enjoy the look along the roads and travel in the fall more. :-)

Now that the asters are blooming, I had forgotten how great they can look. I am plotting to add more for next year.

I'm so happy to hear that Sarah and DSIL are managing and that they have good support. I think that makes a lot of difference. I hope that will continue since as you pointed out, it is a long haul. Also very happy you have Phoebe, I've always found pets to be one of the biggest comforts when going through a difficult time.

' outdid yourself with the Photos...that is one of the best monarch photos I've seen in awhile. I didn't think there were any clematis still blooming except the Summer Autumn. Mine finally bloomed more significantly this year and it is going to get moved to a more prominent location. I should move it in the spring, right?

Mary....Chelone's offer of Woodland Book titles, reminded me of my favorite, 'Beth Chatto's Woodland Garden'.

Kathy....I can't see your photos either, but they sound Your new plants sound nice...will the primrose be blooming any time soon, or are you putting them in for the spring? We just added pansies and mums. I seem to pick out the same colors I don't understand why. [g] What strange dreams you have. :-)

Chelone....per your earlier suggestions I managed to find a whole flat of Browalia at the nursery sometime in May and added them to my few containers. They performed their little hearts out all summer and will be on my must have list for next year. Nice combo with the impatiens.

I could really get excited about a 'definite' Idyll camp. Seems like since we are all so resourceful, and there is a lot of time before next summer, maybe it could actually happen? What could we do to help? Food is something our family could help out with for sure. We have a folding banquet table, [I think] and some folding chairs we could fit in the van. And a moderately sized cooler.

Kathy mentioned campfires....marshmallows and S'mores?

Jerri...I could identify with some of that Manifesto from the Garden Rant Blog. I will have to go back and look it over more, it looks like a good one.

I have to say that like Deanne, I don't think I could ever tire of magazine photos of perfect gardens, but I have realized that I set myself up for disappointment if I think I will ever have one. [g]

I think I am suspicious of the 'horticultural industry'. I have been thinking about that a little, lately. After seeing a gorgeous photo of a new ajuga 'Toffee Chip' and then seeing the actual plant, I realized how often I have been disappointed by so many of the new offerings that breeders are charging a fortune for. Like all the new echinaceas just for starts. And I'll leave it at that. [g]

Marian...sorry to hear you are scratching your skin off! Horrors! Our son helped plant the Arborvitae for us last week and this week he is scratching from a late case of poison ivy. We did our 'spring scan' for it, but now there are a few more patches again. Does that calamine lotion really help? Is there no way that you could consider going to Idyll Camp? Are you on route from anyone driving from out that way? Maybe you could bring Nolon with you? [g]

I want to eat at Mary's house too. :-)

Julie....great minds think alike, [g] our DS made a huge pan of lasagna last week. I can't remember the last time we had that. We had it three nights in a row left over and it was delectable! What is 'triple mix'? I also found myself determined to finish the front before working on the back garden this year. I am not 'finished', finished, but what I was planning on doing this year was done first before heading to the back. I am still having to concentrate on small pieces of the pie to keep from getting overwhelmed. I am finding doing it that way, much more satisfying.

I fell asleep at 8:30pm last night, due in part to the fact I was exhausted but trying to find anything on TV that I was interested in seeing was so fruitless. I seem to find not just one or two programs that are either mindless or offensive or both, but just about everything that is on has quickly reached a level of 'not being able to sit through it'. If I see another Police and Coroner investigation series with autopsies and flashbacks to violent crimes in them, I am going to scream. I find myself wondering less about the people creating these shows and more about who the heck is watching them.

Deanne....maybe you could share photos of your finished painting projects?

OMGosh all know how to have a good time. Those haystack tables with cloths and fire going in the middle of a meadow...such fun! was the CT plant swap?

This can be today and tomorrow's post, since it is so long.

Hope Monday is good to you... :-)

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 7:08AM
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Good morning all.

I woke up crabby this morning. Geez. Nothing around here is going easy, and I like to think I am an easy going person :)

Nick's going to take me to breakfast....maybe that will work?

I am hoping to do some leaf casting in the next couple of has dawned on me that the leaves will disappear soon and my window of opportunity will be gone! I'd like to make latex molds of some great leaves for winter use, too. I've got my materials together, I just need a big block of time where my head is in the right space.

Deanne, just chant, "lens, lens, lens" while you paint! That's some determination you have there....and I'd like to cast my vote for seeing a picture of the final product, too.

GB, those are the clems that I really like with their nodding heads :) My order from Chalk Hill hasn't come yet....hmmm, time to check that out. This is a dog time of year - Zeus plays like a puppy on these cool sunny days.

I don't have much to say, crabby being that I am this morning. If I were smart, I'd come home from breakfast with a new attitude, whip this house back into shape (Julie, I think we have the same Phil problem) and do something fun (like leaf casting)....we'll see.

Later Friends.


    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 8:16AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Just a very quick good morning to all and wanting to wish all a Happy Autumn 2008. Can you even believe today is the first day of fall???? IN honor of the season here is my first fall foliage photo. One of the reasons I so love my dogwood even though it's not in the best of health and never really blooms well it does make berries for the birds and the fall color is gorgeous

Saucy, you are absolutely right, I do keep reminding myself of the goal at the end of this. I can't wait to be able to get that lens! ~~

PM and Saucy, I'll let you know when the pic of the new painting is up on my web site as I can't post pics of my paintings on GW anymore because according to the info they 'own' rights to any and all photos posted here. I've had major copyright infringements in the past that cost me thousands of dollars to resolve and I can't risk opening myself up to that kind of problem again.

So Sue how were those whoopie pies??? Glad to hear you had fun at the swap. Wish we had something like that close to home.

Mary, I wish I was at your house for dinner last night. ~~ WE call this little back corner of the yard our "Grotto" because it has the feeling of being enclosed and cozy.

Kathy, I want that gunnera leaf! Gorgeous! Perhaps Saucy will teach us how to do that at IdyllCamp?

So do we all remember how the first Idyllunion came into being? it was exactly how this Idyll camp is being discussed. Perhaps this will happen. How fun would that be? Not to mention learning lots of new and interesing skills.

OK must run and get to work.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 8:58AM
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jak1(4 Ontario Can)

G'Morning all! Looks like a beautiful day up here in the frozen north!

Read through my yesterday post - and I am a little embarassed! Boy, what a crank!

But I read everybody else's too, and really enjoyed my visit with you.

Kathy, I can't see your photos either - but I'll keep watching. Yeah, I'll bring the score for the Brahms so if there are non-singers out there it won't matter (hehehe).

Chelone: love the colour combination - and got a laugh out of the Mohawk on the dog. Great descriptor!

Martie: in my neighbourhood, most folks are elderly. It could be a goldmine for your DS and his entourage! The Autumnal Equinox? Already?

Jerri: some folks actually believe that there is such a thing as the no-maintenance garden. Because I keep up with mine pretty well, at least in the front, many think that is what I have! Oh if only they knew! That's like my family thinking I have created the self-cleaning house *LOL*

Marian" Aren't "itchies" the pits? Sorry to say that Calamine does nothing for me. Glad to read that things are a little better today.

And 'Bug - Hugs to you! Talk away whenever you wish - that's what friends are for! I actually think I was crabby yesterday because my energy stores were depleted. Eleven hours of sleep seems to have done a lot to restore my usual cheery self!

Deanne: Hmmmm. got to get one of those lamps! For us it's just "the thing is over the thing".

V: I thought your end of summer party was a blast. Loved it! Felt like I was there from your pictures! Right out of Martha indeed!

Mary: How old is David? DS's solution (at age 13) was to shave his head (those beautiful blond curls!) and just do the soap and washcloth thing in the shower. Adrian, on the other hand, loves his bath. He can't be a real boy....

Sue: "Spent a few hours and din't make a dent" - Know that feeling. But after several non-dent sessions, surprisingly it will be done!

Susan (Saucy) - maybe you caught what I had yesterday from reading my crabby post!

And Deanne: I am waiting for the magazine - surprisingly, DH is too! I guess that's part of the Manifesto that doesn't fit me...

Hope I haven't missed anybody - See you tomorrow!



    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 9:50AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

The sunny side....

Of course each moment of the day varies...up and very down. But I'd like to share with you an 'up' moment.

I chatted with Sarah and Wayne about reasons for and against sharing their news about baby #2. It is very important that this new little one not be perceived by anyone as a replacement child, and so there was indeed caution. But with time it was obvious that certain family members needed the resolution and hope that anticipating this baby will offer.

Sarah and Wayne and Skyler, along with DH and I, went to make the announcement to Wayne's Mom several days following the service for Reed. One of his sisters was also there. After looking at cards his Mom had received and sipping tea, Wayne stood in the kitchen with his big hands on Skyler and announced, with tears pouring down his face, that Skyler would have a new baby brother or sister around the time of his next birthday.

WELL, the whoops of joy from Skyler were so fantastic! He was so very thrilled and excited and full of questions. "I can't WAIT for my birthday! This is the BEST EVER!"

My words can't capture it, but it was better than any movie and we were all hugging and weepy and happy.

That doesn't mean that it will be an easy journey...but we know they are such fantastic parents that it is so very very right.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 10:04AM
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What a complexity of emotion you and your family are challenged to sustain right now, 'bug, but it's so clear there's an abundance of strength and love in your family. The clems are lovely, but the simply perfect Japanese anenomes really tug hard at me. And I hope fall photos might include pets romping against fall backdrops ;)

Mary's grotto immediately brought to mind the shell grottos, but it sounds as though something simpler is envisioned. Locally, the V. Mary is revered as patroness of sailors, as in the church Mary Star of the Sea, which is where my brother was married. Point being that perhaps this family has a specific association with Mary that could be included in the design.

Michelle, you know that these early years you've had with Kenzie bind her to you in countless ways, which considerably lessens any physical distance. I hope the little peanut had a fun journey with all your travel aids.

Julie, enjoying reading about life with the Philistines. I often feel surrounded by Visigoths myself, lol...

Jerri, I read the Gardenrant folks faithfully, a great bunch of gardeners.

V, have a great time dancing the tango on vaca.

Gotta run, wave to all. (Oh, PM, re perusing tv in despair for something to watch. I'm not a doodad sort of person, but put a Tivo on your Christmas list. Then you can set up a recording schedule for shows like Nova that are always there when you need them, and you can cut through the cr*p, lol.)

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 12:42PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

PM2, read up on goldenrod 'Fireworks'.(below) Mine is at its peak today and I love it!!!

Fireworks with Agastache:

And here is Anemone "Charlotte", which does spread:

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 1:52PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

I am such a bad idyller - I am full of good intentions that are too easily set aside! Kind of like the weight loss program Im always intending to work on, LOL...

I did manage to sneak a peek or two in the last week and saw the great variety of news and posters -- I have even copied Julie's no-critter houseplant formula and applied & dunked most of my houseplants yesterday - - I am very proud of myself - not only remembering to get the formula but following thru on the act - it was hard work -- those agaves and succulent "pizzas" have somehow multiplied into other containers!

I had good intentions this a.m. too to get on early - but ended up on a 90 minute metro train stuck in a tunnel - what a NOT great way to start Monday; things kind of wooshed by from there.

I think V said it so well, 'bug, that that's what's great about this spot -- you can be sitting in the pjs and the house a wreck and we wont care -- it's good to try to do the "normal" stuff and get back to those things you like or are curious about (like what's happening at idylls!) -- and taking in the small joys of Phoebe -- I think having dogs (maybe cats, too, LOL) are so great for broken hearts -- you cannot stay too sad or weepy when they're around because they simply wont let you -- they have antics and sillies and need some attention, even if it's just sitting by your side -- they are a wonderful source of small comforts -- just what you all need. So, just enjoy her.

Im sorry to hear you're having to work so hard, Deanne, but you must find the art classes gratifying in a different creative sense, dont you? I love your "grotto" -- equisite foliage.

I like the Garden Rant blog too -- I also have gotten caught up in "Awaytogarden" which is the former Martha editor site - it's really interesting and she's another foliage guru -- Deanne's photo of the contrasts in her "grotto" are a wonderful example of what she's fond of as well.... it's amazing how one can get caught up in these blogs -- I guess they'd be great for those 2 a.m. insomnia nites; but it can cut into other things.

I would love to see an idyll camp become a reality, frankly -- I've said time and again I'd love to take Saucy's tufa class - and there's lots more here - I suspect I could manage to learn how to make soap too. Im a big fan of the "smelly" diffuser oils that are so popular to stink up the house; that would be neat to learn too.

Well, gotta a lot on the plate here at ofc; Michelle I hope you are bearing up well in the relative flite east and south.


    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 1:55PM
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Since I lost a nice long post due to stupidity, this will be brief.

Saturday was a fabulous day and I spent all of it in the garden. I haven't had a day like that in nearly a month. I really got things shaped up. I started cutting back, but only those that are looking ratty. You can hardly notice their absence.

'bug, glad to have you back in the fold - I hope that's how it feels like being the the loving folds of this little community. I'm glad to hear that you all can still find some joy in these difficult days.

Deanne, your grotto certainly has the feeling. Calming and relaxing.

Chelone, love the color combo of the window boxes. I'd love to see a picture of the whole house.

V, enjoy your anniversary celebration - it sounds wonderful! The autumn party looks very Martha-like.

1:00 is here.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 2:02PM
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My solidago 'Fireworks' are just getting started but they are wonderful plants. One thing that I've learned over the years is that fall blooming plants seem to have the best looking foliage all season.

The beautiful anemone reminded me that as I looked thru pictures the other day I saw that I had saved the final Charlotte picture last September. She sure was a sweetheart.

Wouldn't it be fun to have an Idyll plant swap?


    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 4:39PM
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Happy Autumn Equinox to all ! It got unexpectedly warm today, kind of a rude awakening after the nice mild days of the last week. Better for the grapes thoughharvest proceeds slowly. Tomorrow I have to go out to the flatlands toward Sacramento to help a co-worker with some inventory issues. Its always ungodly hot out there.

Deanne, your grotto made me think of an area in the side yard of the house I grew up in. There was reed fencing , lots of shade and big split leaf philodendrons, night blooming jasmine, begonias , fuchsias etc. Though the plants are different I though of the spot the moment I scrolled down into your photo.

bug, a wonderful story of the outing of your whispered secret. It seems it was just the right thing to do , at the right moment. I particularly like the photo of the goldenrod with the lovely farmhouse in the distance.

PM, my response to crummy TV is to not watch it ..After baseball season is over it pretty much gets turned off for the winter, and I watch movies from my Netflix account once or twice a week. Im also very fond of radio and like to listen to shows like "A Prairie Home Companion" and some programs that play on one of our jazz stations up here. I havent watched a TV network sitcom or drama series in many years.

Cindy, no way are you a bad idyller ! Just a little behind thats all ! One cannot be responsible for the metro .

Ok Michelle, plant swap at Idyll summer camp. Im going to have to drive a semi back east to haul back the tufa , birdbaths, plants, etc. Maybe Denise and I can split the cost of a Uhaul, lol

Ok, going to try to post these container photos again..

This is the one I ripped the Phormium out before pic here.


After: This will look decent all winter here, the Callibrachoa will die back to the soil but will return next spring. I have never grown ornamental kale and really look forward to how this arrangement will look once the kale fills out...

'nite all

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 9:13PM
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OK PM, the requested cornfield picture has been added to the Fall Happenings post along with a new favorite perennial for me.

Kathy, the pot looks much refreshed. I may need to do that as well after 2 days of horrible wind I see some of my containers looking pretty shabby.

I must go and get my computer ready to go to the computer hospital. Hopefully, its stay won't be long. I can still post from work so you can't get rid of me :o)


    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 9:22PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

I should be carrying out the garbage, but I'd rather procrastinate.

I decided to start my pre-vacation frenzy at work today, so that I have 5 days to get through it instead of one or two. So far, so good.

'bug, I had not thought about the timing of Sarah's annoucement, since we had heard the secret much earlier. Glad to hear that Skyler was so excited. I've thought of him often over the last several days.

Not much else happenin' at this end of the world right now. Think I'll shut the laptop down and then shut down the brain.


    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 9:53PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Good Evening Idylls!

This will have to be brief, as I'm racing around trying to get things in order for our trip.

Hi Cindy! I hope things have settled down with the neighbor? BTW I've been wanting to ask you...did you get the right daylilies?

Beautiful pics Bug...I *love* the Monarch pic especially...he's absolutely luminous and so handsome! He is perfect - not a tatter or fade to his did him proud! :-)

V - you *really* do know how to dip into the joy of apparently your whole family does! What fun pictures...the setting and hay tables w/ the pumpkins are just beautiful...but being a city girl...I think I loved the cows most! :-) I still think someday I'll have that nonworking farm with two of everything...but especially a rooster and goats...have to have goats. But is there anything more beautiful than a cow's eyes?

Drema...I got a big smile out of your breakfast story...That's how it was at my house when I was growing up....except it could be any day...LOL! Relatives, friends, neighbors would just stop by and if we were eating...would join us with the food. Didn't matter how much we had or (most of the time) didn't always welcomed everybody to the table. I really admire that about her...the joy and grace and welcoming heart she always had. I miss all those people just stopping in. There's a true warmth and shared joy in doing it. I guess those were different times. But nice to see someone still carries on that tradition....good memories to make Drema! :-)

Marian and Chelone too...thanks so much for sharing your insights on the Clethra. I think you hit the nail on the head...I am stingy when it comes to watering and they *are* in a dryish site, so that's probably what the problem is. Well I would really like to see them in their full glory, so maybe I'll be more generous and regular with the watering, at least with the Clethra's! :-) Thanks again!

Not for anything in particular, but a few years back I was involved with a group that had meetings based on the book "The Artist's Way". The book is a bunch of exercises on tapping your inner artist. I know that may sound a little "new agey", but it wasn' was a wonderful experience. Anyway during that period we were reading a book called Gifts from the Sea. A beautiful book by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. Anyway, I was thinking of that book the other day and started reading it again and just wanted to share this passage on aging. Cause I really think she said it so eloquently and gave me pause to think about my perspective on aging....maybe it will speak to some of you too:

The signs that presage growth, so similar, it seems to me, to those in early adolescence: discontent, restlessness, doubt, despair, longing, are interpreted falsely as signs of decay. In youth one does not as often misinterpret the signs; one accepts them, quite rightly, as growing pains. One takes them seriously, listens to them, follows where they lead. One is afraid. Naturally. Who is not afraid of pure space - that breath-taking empty space of an open door? But despite fear, one goes through to the room beyond.

But in middle age, because of the false assumption that it is a period of decline, one interprets these life-signs, paradoxically, as signs of approaching death. Instead of facing them, one runs away; one escapes - into depressions, nervous breakdowns, drink, love affairs, or frantic, thoughtless, fruitless overwork. Anything, rather than face them. Anything rather than stand still and learn from them. One tries to cure the signs of growth, to exorcise them, as if they were devils, when really they might be angels of annunciation.

Angels of annunciation of what? Of a new stage in living when, having shed many of the physical struggles, the wordly ambitions, the material encumbrances of the active life, one might be free to fulfill the negleted side of one's self. One might be free for growth of mind, heart, and talent; free at last for spiritual growth; free of the clamping sunrise shell. Beautiful as it was, it was still a closed world one had to outgrow. And the time may come when - comfortable and adaptable as it is - one may outgrow even the oyster shell.

Just wanted to share...

Oh and this quote for T on starting that garden:

"It takes as much courage to have tried and failed as it does to have tried and succeeded."

Okay, you can blame all my mood on listening to Andre Bottecelli singing Con Te Partiro! I don't know *what* it is about that song or his singing of it...but there is always a spot in the song that *never* fails to bring me to tears...don't ask me why...I don't even know what most of the words mean! LOL! Anyway....

P.S. Deanne I'll email you when I get back to mail out the variegated agave.

And P.S.S. PM2...that is my *favorite* pansy! That's one of the 'Antique Rose Shades'; isn't it? Well, even if it isn't I *love* the coloring!

P.S.S.S. And *yes* *I* noticed...this wasn't brief...LOL! Sorry!

Good Night All!


    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 11:15PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

It's 6:47 and there's a beautiful pink color on the horizon. The sunrise will be at 7:10. Only a half hour ago I saw the moon and stars.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 6:55AM
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I woke to see the moon and stars, too, GB, and funny, I thought of all my Idyll friends :)

I dreamt that you all came to my house for Idyllunion, or it could've been Idyll Camp, and my garden had been flooded, and was still underwater. I looked outside and you were all camped out on blankets around the river in my yard. Funny, I lived across the street from Sue, so we all went to her house where it was dry :) There was other nonsense in the dream, too....

Nolon wasn't there :)

Cindy, I didn't comment on your neighbors before, because neighbor troubles make me cringe, but I hope that everything will iron itself out to something that is acceptable for you.

I have to run....literally....this morning is personal training and I just realized I've got to leave right after the bus comes.



    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 7:21AM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Saucy - what a dream! one always wonders what prompts these things; Im sure idyll camp was at your house - you have all the tufa supplies!

Ei -- Im so sorry - I actually did send you a private email in July that I guess you did not receive -- I think it was to tell you how excited I was that they were Swirling Water daylilies -- I had sorely mistreated them the fall before, but I got a few blooms off them despite the abuse, and they lived up to my memories of your garden -- I hope to move a couple of them around to better areas in a few weekends to make some better combos.

Well, Im holding my breath re the neighbor things -- he has not apparently cut the crepe myrtle (yet?) so that's a good thing and I will hope I dissuaded him, LOL.... the other issues are still up in the air; I simply try not to think of them. Im finding I dont seem to have much energy to do much sincere garden work right now - there are things to be moved and I need to go buy some mulch - the arbor project I talked myself out of this fall (I know I will live to regret that procrastination...).

I thought of Cynthia several times last week - I invited a couple people over on Saturday for lunch and an antiquing venture -- I made Cynthia's yummy cajun chicken salad and it was a hit just like at IU4 - Im eating the leftovers for lunch this week. I have vowed to try to start cooking again and eating a bit more healthy.

Well, too many ofc chores await. I think it's great to see that 'bug has picked up her camera and is sharing its bounty with us. Keep 'em coming!


    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 9:10AM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Ahh, Bottecelli, Bocelli...well, they *are* both Italian...LOL!

Glad to hear it Cindy!

Have a great day all!


    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 9:18AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

It is good for me to laugh I am told, and this message from a friend did the trick! I laughed out loud.

In deference to the Archbishop of Canterbury and to Political Correctness, English Weather will now be referred to as Muslim Weather. In other words, Partly Sunni but mostly Shi'ite...

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 11:08AM
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Just heard this on NPR, an interview with American journalist Sarah Lyall on her new book "Anglo Files," observations of her life in England with her British husband, which includes this anecdote:

George Brown, famous Labour politician, known for enjoying a glass or two, and that you had to see him before lunch because he wasn't much use after lunch. He was at a reception for visiting Peruvian dignitaries, and he lurched up to a guest who was prettily attired in flowing purple robes and asked for a dance.

"First, you're drunk," the guest replied. "Second, this is not a waltz. This is the Peruvian national anthem. And, third, I am not a woman, I am the Cardinal Archbishop of Lima."

I've made a few social faux pas in my time, in fact, just two nights ago, when I inadvertently described a 90-year-old person as "old" to an 82-year-old woman, who bristled at said description, but I was able to smooth it over. Can't imagine what could rescue Brown's situation...I've linked to the audio of the interview

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 11:51AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Just a quick note - I've had major computer problems of unknown source and have erased the hard drive and am in the process of reloading everything. It's going to take forever to get it all set up right again so I'm not sure when I'll be back/catch up on things!

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 1:22PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA dogwood is still completely green. Very pretty 'Grotto'. Is that a flowering maple in the pot on the right?

Julie and Saucy...if that's what you call cranky..? [g] I get cranky when I get overtired. I can just feel it coming over me when my energy is depleted. That's when I know I need sleep or if that is impossible, something to eat at least.

I agree with Denise, Gardenbug....'a complexity of emotion' seems to sum it up well. I am glad you all have some happiness in the midst of such sadness.

Gardenbug...beautiful photo! Looks like a lovely fall day there and I always love to see your house. Is that stone or brick? I love the color of it and all the very cheerful. Yes, 'Fireworks' is a plant I have seen on the P.Allen Smith gardening show. He loves that plant too. I almost had one once, but I thought it was invasive as well. I see this link describes it as slowly expanding, which doesn't sound too bad. In my small garden, red lights go off, when I hear the word 'rhizome'. I also would need a short 12" tall variety [not sure even exists] and I see this one gets 3-4ft, which I couldn't use. I will have to enjoy yours vicariously. Very informative article, especially listing so many plant companions.

Denise...I have a cablebox from Comcast that records. I am sure that would be very helpful, if I didn't always keep it full. At the moment I am never going to be able to watch all the gardening shows and Ask This Old House episodes but I keep promising myself I will. [g] I need to clean it out and get a new stock of shows for sure.

Hello Cindy.... :-) Having driven our DD to work yesterday into the 'big city', I can commiserate on your 90 minute metro ride. Getting to and from work seems to always be fraught with some kind of 'adventure'. She needed to carry heavy bags in to work, so rather than have her trek through the transit system, we drove. It had been a long time since I was on the highway at that hour and forgot how much traffic there is. Stop and go. Luckily, I still know all the alternate routes and we actually had a fun time together as she learned a new way to get in town along with a walk down memory lane about all the landmarks along the way.

Michelle...that was how I felt last weekend. Fabulous day in the garden, Saturday and Sunday...gorgeous weather and productivity! Love the idea of an Idyll plant swap. I will have to start thinking about what I could bring that would be worthwhile. had not occurred to me that Netflix was 'replacing' TV. :-) Smart cookie! I have been thinking about trying to take up some hand stitchery to do while listening to music at night, too. I have a DVD player still in the box and Netflix would be a necessity because even the PayPerView offerings are horrible. We end up watching Turner Classic Movies more often than not. DH and I both love old movies. So what was the last TV sitcom you watched?

I LOVE your pots. You have some really great clay pots. I am very partial to that rope edging and a nice effect with larger on top and smaller on the bottom. I always like a taller rectangular pot too. Very pretty pansy face and can't wait to see your pots fill in. Hope you will post update photos, they are going to be fantastic! I am jealous that you can actually start 'new pots' at this time of

Ei....yes...that is the 'Antique Rose Shades', my favorite too, but I am a real fan of pansies and I enjoy so many colors, except the really strong yellows with the dark markings. I am going to try to choose something different next year. [g]

I am also an Andre Bocelli fan. I went to his website today to find the title of one of the songs I play at home. Sogno and Nel Cuore Lei are two of my favorites. It has always fascinated me how music can make you cry even when you have no idea what the words are. I do enjoy a lot of music that is in a language that I don't understand. [g] I liked Bocelli's website...very well done.

Is anyone ordering bulbs this fall? I am looking at Brent and Becky's website but wonder if there is another choice?


    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 5:02PM
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Ei, forgot to say how your AM Lindbergh quote speaks to me. So often lately I've reflected on how 50 feels so much like 14. I had to google The Artist's Way to find it was written by Julia Cameron (exciting for a moment to think it was the 19th Century British photography pioneer but in reality the ex-wife of Martin Scorcese! who knew?)

Cindy, one of my neighbors is beating a drum as we speak and does this all day long. She apparently has been expelled from her Buddhist monastery and has moved her devotions back to the family home, which causes huge fights with her brother, and the mother and father suddenly feel the need to travel extensively. Each family does have its own unique set of challenges, eh? Hope your crepe myrtle manages to escape your neighbor's hedgetrimmers.

PM2, case in point, last night Duncan tivo'd this PBS show on Einstein that was simply enchanting. I plopped in the big chair about 9:00 with a glass of wine and pushed play. There unfolded the genesis of his equation E=mc2. Einstein was a sexy rake in this production! Granted, I've got huge gaps in my education, but I had never heard of Lise Meitner, one of the discoverers of nuclear fission. Or Emilie du Chatelet, the French noblewoman/mathematician/philosopher/lover of Voltaire/mother of 4 (died in childbirth of her fifth child at age 43), who worked on the energy of moving objects being proportional to the square of its velocity. Her translation of Newton is still used in French schools today. Now there's a biography I need to read!

Kathy you mentioned hearing Kyle's band recently. How do you like his music? I've had Elton John's Tumbleweed Connection in the car CD player for long trips lately -- makes me feel decades old from the crush I had on his lyricist Bernie Taupin. Apparently, EJ had a crush on him too! Amazing the stuff you find out if you live long to one of Tumbleweed's songs below, if anyone else remembers it.

My folks are on vaca for a month to visit my aunt in Florida who's in early stages of Alzheimer's. My dad had a bad fall in a restaurant two days ago, and the trip looked in danger, but all is well, just soft tissue soreness, and they'll be on the plane Wed. Last night we cleaned out their fridge, programmed their cell phone to receive messages, and they're good to go.

100 pages to go, so back to it.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 6:39PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Anyone remember this oldie? Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. Well that's me today so I guess I'm waiting for an up day. Sigh. People are terrific though. Being so far apart is killing me. Of course DD & DSIL need their space now though.

Phoebe is great, the kitties sleep with us because nights are cold.

It was sunny and beautiful today but I did set up the hose...very dry.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 7:26PM
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Wow, thanks Denise. I fired up the Napster account (subscription ends at the end of this month!) and am enjoying some Tumbleweed Connection.

Nothing more to add...


    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 7:39PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA have sold me on the Einstein program. I would not have actually turned that on because I am usually looking for something that doesn't tax my poor brain cells. [g] My education is certainly lacking and especially in the sciences, but I have always been a curious soul and many things fascinate me. Thanks for the review, I'll look for it. :-)'s been dry here too. All that rain all summer and now nothing. The ground isn't drying out quickly like it was in high summer at least. I keep putting the sprinkler on a couple of beds a day just to keep things well watered. We are due rain on Friday I believe.

My DD used to ask for that book a lot...and they enjoyed just reciting the Another along those lines, was "Could Be Worse" by James Stevenson. I tried to link to it but the links are not working tonight. It has a grandfather as the main character and tries to add a sense of humor to a bad day. [g]

Waving to Saucy....and Hello to Kathy who I am sure will show up any time, but I am off to watch a DVD from the library...a mystery series with Cordelia Gray.

Good night all!

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 7:57PM
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jak1(4 Ontario Can)

Oh Marie, the Horrible Terrible No Good Very Bad Day is a favourite here! But I'm sorry you had one...You have my number....

I hate to be so cheery, but I had a Very Good Day.

The bricks, Ladies and Gentlemen, are DONE! All in for this year. That was a personal goal for me, to have edged all of my beds by the end of this summer. And up here in the frozen north, we are waking to frost every moerning.

And check my "test" post to see Ajax. Finally. I am now, for an amazing encore, going to post a photo of the bricks. Stay tuned.

Yes. It worked! Sorry about the size - I resized when I probably shouldn't have, but that's just a small glitch, yes?

You poor shmucks, there's no stopping me now!



    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 8:33PM
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Hello friends, Im having a pesky Tuesday, and could use a WALAT to diffuse work-related steam. On the other hand, I have an interest in seeing the St Louis Cardinals defeat the Az Diamondbacks so I am here inside with the ballgame on and visiting the Idylls.

Cindy, isnt it easy to fall into bad eating habits when you are mono-dwelling? I try to keep sandwich stuff around for those evenings when cooking has no allure-like tonight for example ! Ill probably end up making a cucumber tomato salad.

Denise, I would listen to your link but DS has disconnected and moved the computer speakers to parts unknown , having to do with his music recording activities no doubt. As for his band, they are The Helen Kellers and have a MySpace page. Very punkish/alternative-definitely not Elton John ! Edgy I think would be the term. Their biggest challenge right now are production values and the quality of their equipment.

PM, I love those rope rim pots too, I have 6 of them ! I will definitely post pics as they fill out. I think the last sitcom I watched was probably Cheers, and occasionally the Brit comedy "Are You Being Served?" Thinking both of those are pretty old !

Julie, your brick work is lovely , although I did have to get out a magnifying glass to see it , lol. Ajax however looks princely !

OK, thats all for me. I need that WALAT before the sun goes down.

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 9:35PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

PM, look for Solidago 'Little Lemon' - only 8-10" tall.

Denise, thanks for the Tumbleweed Connection resurrection. I'd forgotten how many songs from that album I really enjoyed. I still have some gift card money to spend on iTunes! (I had a mad crush on Elton - rushed the stage at the concert in '71 - didn't realize at the time it was a lost cause.)

Today was very productive at the office and I shall not feel guilty about going on vacation.

On the other hand, I will be thinking that I could spend an entire week decluttering my house, but c'est la vie.

I had a short WALAT this evening before getting to more mundane things. Sad to think so many things will be gone soon. Quite a lovely evening here.

Last night was exciting - just as I fell asleep, the smoke alarms started screaming. I leaped out of bed, opened the bedroom door and started checking things out. As I was debating calling 911, it all stopped. The dishwasher was running and I stopped it until morning. My best guess is that the hot water heater was giving off some carbon monoxide, and when I opened my bedroom door, the breeze from the porch dissipated it. One more thing to have looked into.

OK, off to buy an album.


    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 9:55PM
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Ei, I am sitting here having a little sip of something Skip picked up at the Farm Market called Sajmir. It is described as an "alluring blend of premium brandy, fine vodka and vanilla." I am not really a fan of vanilla or brandy, but I ran out of merlot and the Wine Shop was closed when I drove by this evening to pick up whatever movie came out today and a bottle of wine. Anyway, I wish I had read Ann Morrow Lindberg's book 5 years ago when I thought I was losing my mind as I turned 50, and my hormones went crazy. She described it perfectly! Now, when I feel aging upon me, I will remember this is my second adolescence:) Thanks!

V, I spent one whole week cleaning/decluttering. That was about a month ago, and Skip just filled it back up. My driveway looks like I am home to vagabonds. He was "working" on the garage and got sidetracked. How did we fit all of those cars in the drive when kids were home? I can see it now when the snow flies. I will have little mountains of snow with who knows what under them. I am trying not to think about it or look at it. Vacation will be a much better use of your time!

Bug, I think of you every day. Glad to "see" you posting.

Julie, good for you learning how to post a pic! You are on your way. I got a bunch of pavers this summer and they are piled up by the potager. Skip doesn't think I know how to lay them, but I am going to take a page from Mary's book and go out there and do it.

Well, it is past my bedtime. I ran out of books to read, haven't had a chance to go to the library so am going to delve into a bag my mom sent over. They look kind of scary, I think someone gave them to her, and she didn't want to throw them away. Not really my cup of tea, but... any port in a storm.

Hope you are all well!

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 10:36PM
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(Kathy, I didn't mean to imply Kyle's band was doing Elton John covers. That was just a middle-aged segue ;) Kyle might be interested to hear our local Long Beach band, The Cold War Kids, if your speakers can be located. I might go see them after work tomorrow...if my 14-year-old, teenage stamina can be located...)

    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 12:00AM
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Light Frost, here. Yes, frost. Haven't checked the basil yet but if it's mush, pesto for dinner tonight :-)

Crazy, chaotic day yesterday scooting around Raleigh. Managed to get about 15 feet into the first path of the Raulston Arboretum when I realized that if I didn't get back to the airport I'd miss my flight.

Plants, or being cramped up in a little plane. Big decision. A way around it? Next flight wasn't until today so off I went, but to breathe for a moment was outstanding :-)

Quick reference on how to work with neighborhood kids: First and Foremost, Listen.
Yell loudly "hooray" from the deck when they master the skateboard trick they've been trying for two weeks.
Wave to them at the bus stop, roll down the window, and tell them you'd be glad to get something from their fundraiser.
Talk "to" them, not "down to" them. Their insights are really pretty interesting if you weed out the inability to get three full sentences out in a row.
Say "hello" with a big smile even when they have a bunch of mixed-gender friends along. It impresses the girls that the boys have a bit of manners.

Mostly, let them be kids. I'm convinced that a lot of people think that once one hits 13 they're supposed to be mini-adults and that "just ain't so."

Paying them to help doesn't hurt, either :-)

Anyway, good to see Marie checking in and read the banter from everyone. Some light in this world is what we ALL need right now.


    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 7:22AM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

No time or energy to read right now, but I can scan for pictures. LOL

Julie, I love the bricks! You go girl! :)

Bug, I love the goldenrod photo. I'm not even sure why but goldenrod always reminds me of my Grandma. She was the one 'port in a storm' for me.



    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 12:03PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

In the spirit of laughter (from my brother)

Wine connoisseurs may not be inclined to put a bottle of
Wal-Mart brand into their shopping carts, but 'there is a market for
inexpensive wine,' said Kathy Micken, Professor of Marketing at University of Arkansas, Bentonville.

'However, branding will be very important.'

Customer surveys were conducted to determine the most attractive name for the Wal-Mart wine brand.

The top surveyed names in order of popularity were:

~ 10. Chateau Traileur Parc
~ 9. White Trashfindel
~ 8. Big Red Gulp
~ 7. World Championship Riesling
~ 6. NASCARbernet
~ 5. Chef Boyardeaux
~ 4. Peanut Noir
~ 3. I Can't Believe it's not Vinegar
~ 2. Grape Expectations
~ 1. Nasti Spumante

The beauty of Wal-Mart wine is that it can be served with either white meat(Possum) or red meat (Squirrel).

~ P.S. Don't bother writing back that this is a hoax. I know possum is not a white meat.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 8:57PM
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Not much Idylling going on today ! Almost as though we draw a collective breath and re-group for the next flurry of posting. One of my employees grew up on a farm in Michigan. We had to make a drive today to visit another of our facilities and on the way I was telling her about Michelles beautiful gardens and farm. I do keep going back to that thread multiple times ! We live in an agricultural community here, surrounded by farms on all sides, but the farmers here have incredible wealth, and we speculated as to when the economy would start to effect them. At some point I would think people would start to buy less of expensive wine.

Martie , what a well-spoken dissertation on dealings with the youth of the neighborhood. You have a great approach , and I can clearly see why the little buggers are clamoring to hang about at Cornfield Park. And speaking of children, I received a slide show today of Mr. Baby displaying his new crawling skills.

Thats all for me tonight, I have serious baseball viewing on the agenda

Big Wave to all the Idylls , wherever you may be tonight..

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 9:44PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Kathy is right, it's very quiet here tonight. But there's not a whole lot new here. I have a very silly lab flopped upside down on the couch nest to me (no, he's not supposed to be here) and he thinks I should be scratching his belly instead of typing.

A good night for listening to baseball, too. The Cubs have clinched their division, but I'd like to see them put the Mets away for the season. I never did get over 1969...

I heard a great Yogi Berra quote the other day. Back in the early 70's, Berra was playing in a game when someone streaked across the field. He was asked later if the streaker was a man or a woman and he replied that he didn't know, the streaker was wearing a bag over their head.


    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 10:18PM
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Ah, gotta love Yogi, the only slimy Yankee I can bear ! Have the Dodgers on one channel, and the Diamondbacks on the other. Dbacks are losing, no score for the Dodgers---aren't you about ready to hit the road V? What fun you'll have, and how did you choose BA ???

Kathy in Napa.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 11:05PM
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Good morning Idylls!

I finally woke up on the right side of the bed, I think! The sunrise has been beautiful over the last half hour...shades of misty pinks and yellows. Soon they'll give way to bright red and gold. I am going to take my camera out for some picturesque New England photos early next week :)

My class was fun last night. We learned how to describe the site of our gardens. The class is taught so that you could work with a landscaper and speak with a customer appropriately. We spent half the class in the garden describing conditions....and the other half drawing our "mistake" gardens on the white board for the class to critique. I got my assignments, too....I have to design 4 gardens, one has to be a bulb garden (ack!) and one has to be a large plan that I would sell to a customer. I can use any method of choice, but it has to wow.

Sounds like fun to me :)

You all sound very busy...V's packing, Drema's decluttering, travelling and baseball for Kathy, Woody's dissecting her computer....

I've gotta a bus to catch and some laps to run! Have a great day, all!


    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 7:31AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

A very quick good morning to all, I've been working in the studio ten hours and day and only quitting when my eyes can't focus anymore. I'm ALMOST finished with the painting., good thing I'm teaching it tomorrow. Yikes! I promised myself I wouldn't do this anymore and whoops, here I am again. The piece is turning out OK and hopefully the students will be happy with it. There is a Color Magic rose with some Fuchsia Christina flowers on a charger plate. It will make a pretty table setting when the set is done, yes I said 'set'. The ladies want eight different designs. That will keep me busy for a while. LOL

Martie, can't believe you had a frost yesterday! Wow, it was 47 here. That's unusual for it to be warmer in NH than in CT. You must be in a valley or something. Things here are still OK but the coleus are starting to drop leaves and in general complain about the colder nights.

OK Ive got to get to work, waving hello to everyone!

Have a great day

    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 8:01AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Morning all! Saucy, the same morning here, but quite misty. Your class sounds wonderful and I hope you'll share a bit of your projects with us. A bulb garden! Does that mean bulbs and only bulbs? An odd idea to me, if so. But how I love my Spring Green tulips with blue Camassia blooming together! I wonder if they work under your conditions...

I've been in stunned mode for so many days. I hope my "get up and go-er" kicks in soon. DH has been great. Sarah phoned yesterday and that is good in many many ways. She and DSIL are off to the mountains until Monday. As to us, we've received so many cards and calls...and I am astounded at what kind thoughts and words have been shared in them. This weekend we have a dinner, a brunch and a visit...which is nice, but a bit much all at once. Monday is our Book Club and I want to try that too. So if Mary is reading, do you have your club's list of books yet to share?

DH needs breakfast now, so I'm off.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 8:17AM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

We're actually looking forward to rain here - a no'easter brewing and bringing some very very longed for rain.... just as it appears I may get some blooms off that durned salvia vanhoutii cultivar - Im not sure if I planted it too late or what, but almost October seems a bit late to get "autumn" blooming salvia to kick in.....

Deanne, that charger sounds lovely -- I bet it will be an "antique of the future" -- handpainted lovely mementos of limited editions - Im in the antique mode since my venture to the antique show on Saturday where I saw most of my grandmother's house and my own childhood one, -- it is weird to see stuff one grew up with listed as "antique" isnt it? (And I aint talking 70s stuff, LOL)...

This talk of female scientists also reminds me of biographies that I used to enhale when I was a child - Marie Curie; the first female American medical doctor, etc. -- Im not sure who got me started on those - I seem to recall an aunt giving me a book w/ short stories/summaries of women in science and I was so fascinated; I believe that's where I then went in search of more about them at the public library. Boy, the stories and names have changed over the years though -- as attested to by the things we can see on TV now.

I need a month of decluttering at home - a day would never do it -- that's usually what my weekend "cleaning" is - quick declutters of the week's debris. Kathy, I like your phrase mono-dwelling -so much more appealing that "singlehood", LOL.... I dont mind mono-dwelling in lots of ways (been doing it for a while now) but the food thing is definitely a minus -- I do love to cook but dont like cooking for one -- I guess I dont compliment myself enough or something, heehee. But having had that houseguest last fall who cooked very very unhealthy things, I would prefer to be my own chef if that were the other choice. After a while, one feels just plain awful about the bad foods the body consumes.

'bug - I think the whole process is two steps forward and one back, and there's nothing wrong w/ plateaus to let it process, as Im sure you know. It's great you have a good support system and also recognize that your journey is different than your DD & DSIL's....

PM - I think you inquired re bulbs - I buy mostly from Van Engelen and Scheepers (both owned by same I believe); generally the quality is good; on occasion I've gotten wrong things, but they've been good about it. I actually order in July to make sure I get what I want; I also order from Brent & Beckys - great place and they sell out early. I've also bought the odd this and that from a few other mail order places; but my bulk usually comes from VE - cant beat the prices, assuming they have what you want.


    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 9:32AM
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Last night we met at a restaurant for Ricks DDs 40th birthday. Afterwards, we did a little shopping. I picked up a new coat in preparation for winter (ug). Minnesota has no tax on clothing. Although, selection is a little more limited than the big city, which is not in MN, that city just passed another penny tax so it will now be 8%. So it pays for us to shop for clothes locally. I also picked up some materials to make a wreath that I saw in Country Gardens magazine. It incorporates hedge apples so I hope I can find those.

Ive started the plants on wheels phase of the season. Ive been trying to make notes all season of what plants clash when in bloom or are too big or tall for their spot so that I wont have to rely on my memory in the fall. I was able to get 7 or 8 plants moved.

Its a rainy morning with lots of bold lightning. So the harvest that was just beginning has come to a halt.

bug, it is good to force yourself to participate in things. I went through a very tough season in my life about 6 years ago and spent one winter vegging in front of the TV with no interest or ambition. Things improved when I realized that I needed to live life no matter how depressing the circumstances were.

Wow, Mr. Baby is crawling already!

I need to follow Dremas example and do some decluttering this winter.

Denise, I'm glad to hear that your Dad's fall wasn't more serious.

As for bulbs I've ordered from B&B, but mostly pick things up that I find locally. Last night it was more 'Angelique' tulips.


    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 11:54AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Where is everyone ??? Not only is it quiet here on the Idylls, it is quiet around our place.
It is very breeze. Good thing it isn't hot. I am working on bringing in my potted plants. I have the utility room's pots over half done. I haven't counted them, but there are a bunch! :-)
I started earlier than normal so I wouldn't over tax myself. The sudden cold spells have a habit of sneaking up on us here.
I am finding all sorts of debris from the 2 tropical storms,in my containers. While picking out the most of it, I discovered a little brown frog in one pot. It is safely removed to inside the open cold frame.
I am afraid I did not get the ingredient to the spray that I planned on getting, so they are coming in usual. :-(
The deck still has a lot on containers on it, so still looks good from the utility room door. I will probably leave them out until a cold spell is predicted. I can get them in fast from there.

Do you all remember the 2 benches that we set up in the 'island'? Well they are both lined up with potted trees and shrubs awaiting going into the ground. (Martie,where is that crew of boys?) There is everything from an Abelia to a willow tree ! And I have no idea what I am going to do with them all. I would like to send some home with Tim, but he never has room in his vehicle for them.


    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 5:08PM
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I'm not finished with this Idyll yet.

But, in view of recent events and the need for something to "look forward to" I am willing to host IUIVforME. I'm a little freaked out by it, but what the hell? I know several of you want to come to Maine and if I start now and rope some of you into helping with logistics it'll give us something to dream about until next summer. I can do this (with help!) and it will be a total blast! ("Dive, dive, dive!". It's time to submerge).

Marian, if there is any way you can "swing it" I will guarantee you "dibs" on the "Biddy Suite" (Mum's room). ;) And YOU won't have to take a "navy shower", but everyone else will...

OK, I have to finish reading the Idyll.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 5:41PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

I'm in! Maine 2009 here we come!

Actually, Chelone I'll wave as I go by tomorrow on my way to Lovell for the weekend. My cousin bought this big old farmhouse last spring. Last weekend he bought a party boat for cruising around the lake. Rain all weekend you say? We'll be laughing at it as we traipse off to opening day at the Fryeburg Fair on Sunday. Monday I come home to dry out (in more ways than one no doubt).


    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 7:07PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Chelone, I sure wish I could take you up on the "Biddy Suite".LOL
I asked Nolon what a "navy shower" is and he doesn't know. (And he was in the navy.) ;-)

    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 7:38PM
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Marian, a "navy shower" is a water saving device. You get wet. Turn off the water. Lather up, turn on the water and rinse off. And get the hell out! It's called a "Navy shower" because when you're on a boat you have to carry fresh (not salt) water in the hold and you have to use it thoughtfully and carefully. (drives me nuts that the helpmeet brushes his teeth with the water running!). Rest assured, that you will ALWAYS have "dibs" on the "Biddy Suite".

I am so happy to see posts from you, 'bug. I'm happy (and very proud) to be part of the safety net mesh that is ready, willing, and strong enough to catch you if you tumble off the high-wire. We're here, and that's all you you need to know right now. :)

Thinking a great deal about Eden as I'm coming up on the one year mark for Mum's death. Everyone seems to love Autumn, but I have to be honest you guys... I don't like it. Sure, the colors are great, but it's becoming colder, the daylight is dwindling and the season reminds me of isolation and lonliness. That's how it was for me as a kid. And to this day I can't shake the feeling.

Sue, I was a regular exhibitor in the 4-H pavilion. In those days 4-H filled at least one exhibition hall. Not so, nowadays. I used to make money for my exhibits an never received anything less that a "blue" premium". It all seems so "quaint" to the strollers, but being part of a 4-H club was a big part of being a kid in very rural community.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 8:21PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Hello, hello.... :-)

How is everyone tonight? It's late and this has been a tiring week so far.

V...thanks for that idea of the 'little lemon' solidago. I will look for it.

Kathy....DH used to enjoy that 'Are you Being Served?' and gee, I think I used to watch Cheers back before my kids were born! Mr Baby's crawling...that didn't take long. DD will be worn out. :-)

Martie....great primer for working with the neighborhood kids. I think you have it down pat! Hope you are feeling okay and not too busy. :-)

Saucy....your class is sounding very interesting and I am glad to hear you are keeping up with your laps. are sounding very tired. With a whole set to be done, doesn't sound like you will have free time any time soon. are sounding like you are doing better than anyone could expect. Stress can really burn out your adrenal glands and then you crash and the best thing you can do for yourself is pace yourself until you are feeling the energy again. Glad Sarah and DSIL are getting away. Hope that will be good for them.

Michelle...I should be moving plants...we did a couple last weekend, but I have to get places prepared for moving the plants, so I am in the 'ripping things out' stage. I can really identify with the conclusion you came to about having to live life no matter how depressing the circumstances. Have had to come to that conclusion myself. Sometimes you feel like you are going through the motions though. An expression that used to put it in perspective for me was 'Fake it 'til you Make it'. You can really get stuck sometimes unless you start putting one foot in front of the other. I love those 'Angelique' Tulips! I'm doing Galanthus and Crocus with just a couple of mini Daffs at B&B's.

Cindy....thanks for the recommendation for Scheepers. I just placed an order with Brent & Becky but I made a small order to hold me until some of the fall bulbs go on sale. I am going to head over to the Scheepers website tomorrow and see what they have. I find I want to have one of everything. Until they all arrive and I have to plant them all. [g]

Marian...glad you are getting some of your plants in. Sounds like you have a lot still left outside. I sometimes think houseplants multiply like rabbits when you are not looking. :-)

Happy to here there will be an Idyll Camp in Maine next year! It would be really great to see all the Idylls.

I love that 4H Pledge! 4H Fairs were are one of our special memories of when the kids were little. I wasn't lucky enough to participate in 4H when I was growing up, but I would have loved it! We used to take the kids to one in Westford MA....see the link below. There are a ton of photos on the site. We always had a wonderful day and they had the best barbecue chicken dinner with corn on the cob that the kids would help 'shuck'. I would have loved to take home any of the animals if I were allowed. I wanted to grow up on a farm, but we were city mice. :-)

Chelone....Fall is my favorite time of year and I always feel just the opposite about it. Both our parents worked and when school started in the fall, there was much needed structure and I really looked forward to going to school and seeing my friends again and loved the teachers and my classes were interesting. My mother would take us 'school shopping' at the end of summer. New clothes, pencils and notebooks etc. I really looked forward to it. Isn't it amazing how long what happened to us as kids has an impact on us?

Well...I hope that post made sense, I am too tired to proofread.

Thinking about Eden and wondering where Wendy and Anita and Cynthia are. Hello to Norma and Ei ...Sue...Drema....who else did I miss?


    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 9:45PM
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More heat here today, we are looking a mid to high 80s for the rest of the week with nights in the low 50s. Its layered clothing season to be sure !

Deanne, I was thinking that you were probably holed up with a paintbrush the last few days. Youll have that new lens in time to take some action shots of birdbath making in the salon at IU6 Summer Camp. . Looks like Saucy will have to teach a unit on landscape design too !

Cindy, I dont mind mono dwelling either anymore , once I got used to it. Im really only semi-mono since DS is still here but sometimes our paths dont cross for several days, almost as if he lived across town. So I am de-facto mono ! Im making an artichoke frittata tonite for a pot luck at the office tomorrow.

Yipee, a holiday in Maine ! And there is no holiday like an Idyll holiday! I hereby promise to step up to the plate if the Idylls ever get their collective a**es out to the left coast !

All for me, with a wave to all- wheres Anita been lately ?

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 9:49PM
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Don't worry Kathy, we're just waiting for you to sell the house and move to PNW :)

Yeah Chelone! I hearby volunteer my services! Whatever you need....I'm sorry to hear that Fall isn't a pleasant time of year for you.

Tonight I chose all the bulbs...the color scheme is centered around Fritillaria Persicaria and a creamy white. I moved into deep pinks, too. GB, I am planning on putting my fictitous bulb garden under my mature Hydrangea Peegee standard that is skirted with ferns to hide the bulb foliage.

I made flash cards with a picture of each bulb so that I can reference it quickly. Also on the card are notes, bloom time, hardiness zone, height, and cost of bulbs. I used a catalogue (I figure this is how I'd buy it, right?). So far the cost of bulbs is 190.

My bees need my attention after this rain, but until then, I'll be working on my design. I love arts and crafts...who knew I could do it for a class?!?

Goodnight all....see you in the a.m.


    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 10:27PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

If I have counted right, I have brought in 63 containers, and quite a few left to bring in. I started the process, a few days ago, by bringing in all the hangers first. There were 14. The Achimenes are hangers, but they are still out. They go dormant when cold weather arrives. I got carried away with the container for my Canna. I may not be able to get it in. I'd really like to leave it in it's container, but it is very large,(both the Canna and the container). When I get rich I am going to have a greenhouse. ;-) Thank goodness neither banana is in such a large container. I had quit digging up the Elephant Ears, but am tempted to do it this fall. They are so easy to replace, I quit bothering.

My bananas are the common ones, but the original was given to me from one of my dear friends that lived to be 101 years old! She gardened up to almost the last year of her life.

Marie, I am so pleased to see you posting, and I am glad you have so many outside activities to attend. I think that is a very good thing. I hope Sarah and her DH have a peace giving vacation in the mountains.

LOL, Pm2, I think you are right about house plants. I have many duplicates, and just cannot bring myself to dispose of them. I could probably find homes for them if I took them to the Golden Years class.

Chelone, that you for the open invitation. :-) Wouldn't you be shocked if a taxi pulled up to your house and this little old woman got out with a bunch of luggage. :-) That is what one of my dad's sisters did, when I was a teen. Nobody knew she was coming. In fact, I didn't even know she existed! And her name was Lizzy! I kid you not!

Sue, it sounds like you are going to have a great weekend.

Saucy, I hope the day continued to be a good one for you. It's good that you woke up on the right side of the bed. :-)

We will have a rather busy morning tomorrow. First I take Nolon in for some blood work. Then we will eat breakfast in town. Next he will get a haircut.While he is doing that I will go to the drug store to get my Lyrica refilled. Then we will go to the recycling center to sell his boxes of scrap metal. And last we wil drive to our county seat's revenue office to get my car's registration renewed, and a handicap sign to hang in the car, for when Nolon is with me. It is supposed to be another beautiful day, like today was.

Now if this gurgling and rumbling in my innards does not turn into somethig worse...I will be good to go. :-(

'night all...


    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 10:47PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Morning came a little earlier than I wished, but my day sounds very like Marian's with errands in town, hair cut etc. I still need to collect the branches that I pruned in the laneway.
DH has his 8:30AM class to deal with.
Today I'll be thinking of Sue off on her weekend of fun, as well as all of you who are looking forward to the end of the work week.
'bug & Phoebe

    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 4:59AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good morning all,

Well the painting is finally finshed, finito, fini, done, done, done... Woohoo... Also, I had to cut four triple mats, and two double mats for one of my students, Oh yes and not to forget write the ten pages of illustrated instructions to go along with this for the class. All done. Yea, now when this class is finished I'll throw a party.

Anyway, anyone interested in seeing the painting can send me an email and I'll send you a link to the pic.

OK I've got to hit the shower and get to class. Set-up day takes an extra hour and I've got a forty minute drive to get there. Have a great day everyone.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 6:51AM
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Good morning

Feeling somewhat frazzled here as I try to wrap up parts of the big garden job before starting full time at school next week. The house owners have my sketch for the grotto and seemed to like the plan. Soon I'll be shopping for a Mary, hopefully something less than life size.

GB - it's great to hear you voice again and see such lovely pictures of your garden. Our book group just read In the Woods by Tana French. It is a literary mystery. Having never read mysterys for group before I wasn't sure how this would turn out. However the book is beautifully written, there are fabulous twists and turns in the plot and well drawn characters. It is a real page turner, I was reading it at odd hours day and night, whenever I had a spare moment. Our group is rather hard to please but I think everyone gave it a thumbs up! We are also reading Into the Castle by Dodie Smith and "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society" this year and will vote on books for 2009 at our next meeting.

Deanne - would love to see you picture. Congrats on getting all your prep accomplished. I'm sure it will be a great class!

Saucy - enjoyed hearing about your garden class and wished I could have been there with you.

Need to run but hope to return to chat with everyone else.


    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 7:37AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)


Boy this tinges of color and hints of change theme isn't the easiest TGIF to create! lol

Pouring here this morning. Perfect weather for a four plus hour drive. Here's a shot of my cousin in his new boat from last weekend. At least it has a canopy. Can you say cocktails in the rain?

Chelone, I'll have you know I was a member in good standing of the Cooky Cavies and Rolling Rabbits 4H club of Burlington, MA for many years. My rabbits won many awards at not only 4H shows (Westford fair every year) but at professional shows as well. Somewhere I have a scrapbook filled with ribbons. I don't think the trophies survived my mom's last move.

Well better get moving. I plan to escape at noon today.

Hello to all! Enjoy your weekend!


    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 7:48AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Does anyone here use Firefox? Randy's computer uses it but the GW pages don't show properly - you have to scroll sideways to read.... It I switch to IE, the pages show properly but my Dvorak keyboard settings won't work for some reason so I can't post very easily. Can someone tell me how to set Firefox so I can read these pages?! (after wiping the hard drive on my computer, I reinstalled Windows and started loading things again - as soon as I loaded the printer, it immediatly crashed the computer. I got it back up and it crashed again almost immediately! So I gave up and ordered a new computer - which should be ready early next week I hope!)

gb - it's good to see you posting. How's Phoebe's cookie supply?

Marian - I think you need to find a way to test out that Biddy Suite in Maine!

Sunday is the local garden tour this year so it'll be interesting to see what the gardens are like this year. Usually the tour is the first weekend in July. You'd have to be pretty brave to open your garden at this time of year - summer show is winding down but autumn color hasn't really got under way.

Sorry - I'm not commenting on much - it's too hard to read the screen on this computer!

    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 9:01AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Woody, I can't answer. I do use Firefox and the pages are just fine. I'll ask DH later today to see if he can help Randy. SOOO frustrating.

Phoebe still has cookies galore. We have other cookies we alternate with. She enjoys her new red ball too.

Garden help may come today. I sure need it. Lots of color here in the last few days, but mildewed phlox, etc... I hope to remove one island bed entirely where a tree has grown so much that it covers it. May move some of those plants to the mailbox area. Lots and lots of piddly things need attention.


    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 9:42AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Hi Woody...I also use Firefox, but I have the Apple, so anything I could suggest probably wouldn't work for your pc. I just wondered if there are preferences somewhere on the menu for the firefox, that you could check your settings? You have my complete sympathy. I hate computer problems and the time it takes to straighten them out. Glad you have a new computer coming. You'll have to tell us all about it.

Marian....I agree with Woody. It would be great if you could go to the Idyll Camp in Maine next year. Since there is so much time between then and now, maybe you can work something out? lucky duck! :-) Have a great weekend!

Mary....I apologize...I forgot to say hello to you, last post. You've been so busy lately, I do miss your posts. Haven't seen any little carrot people or anything in too long a time. :-)

Rainy here today...hoping for a quiet day before the weekend.



    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 10:12AM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

Drive by post, Hi all.
YIPPEE! I always wanted to see Maine. :)

Sign me up for the left coast in 2010 too.
2010 sounds like it should be years in the future doesn't it?

Back to work. TGIF =)


    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 11:22AM
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I moved several more plants last night and planted a clearance shrub. I need to work on cuttings tomorrow as they are talking at least one night in the 30's next week. I have mixed feelings on autumn. The days are so short that I don't get much gardening time except on the weekend. I'm not crazy about the bugs that show up in the fall either.

Mary, the grotto that is in our area here has statues in carrara marble which is an elegant way to go if the budget allows.

Woody, I agree about the fall garden tour. Sometimes the garden looks pretty good to gardeners who get it, but those who don't garden expect a pristine look.

Good to see Deanne resurface. I'd love the link for your latest project.


    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 11:25AM
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jak1(4 Ontario Can)

Hi everyone! All's quiet on the northern front this morning.

Wednesday morning I woke up hurting everywhere, so took Ibuprophen and went back to bed. Got some gardening done in the afternoon, but felt awful again so went to bed at 7 p.m. Yesterday DH and I went to the city (Ottawa) to do some errands and do our once-monthly blow out at Costco. This morning I went downtown here in Perth for coffee with a friend so nothing done here so far again. Guess I'll have to get busy!!

The big Hostas will come out this week-end - expecting a big downpour so it should be easier digging.

Took 24 geranium cuttings and they all look good under the lights. The lawn has been cut and fertilized this week, and the garden failure under the deck overhang is now a thing of the past. Dug out the "Naked Ladies" (forget what they're really called, but they are related to Amaryllis) and the Elephant Ears and they will be going into their winter paper bags this week. Starting to feel a little better about the chores both inside and out.

Still no magazine, Saucy. No wonder they call it "Snail Mail"!

Anyway, I'd better get a move on or it will be Christmas and I'll still be doing garden chores!



    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 11:36AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Hi all!
Mission accomplished!I had hoped tp throw in another activity at the county seat(Jasper)but it wasn't ready yet. I am speaking of the flu shots. Nolon's Dr.'s office had a sign at the admission window that their flu shots- nasal sprays were in. We decided to go to the county heath dept. at Jasper, as we usually do....but it was closed. :-(
So...another time....
As predicted, it is a beautiful day. The only problem is.. the sun was in my face all the way to Harrison this morning. My new(expensive)eye glasses are 'supposed' to be the kind that darken as you get into bright light(are they called 'transition lens'?). Well mine are not changing to my satisfaction, so ...back to the clinic with them. :-(

Hey, Chelone, Woody, and Pm2....who knows what will transpire between now and next summer??? I may surprise us all. :-) I too, would really really love to see Maine, AND to met you all face to face.
So far my meds are working well, so that would not be a problem. Leaving Nolon alone would be. I would HAVE to have someone stay with him. I am not really considering the possibility.

It is about 12:30 now, and still only 69 both in and out. By next tues., it is predicted to be lows in the 40s and highs about 70, so...all my tender plants will need to be inside.

There is not much color in the trees yet, mostly purples in the Ash. The Sumac has been red for awhile now. Lots of asters and goldenrod blooming along the roadsides. Dogwoods are coloring up. The Flaming Fall Revue tour is usually the middle of October. I wish I had taken my camera when I went to town a week or two ago, the roadsides had lots of Gaura in bloom. Chicory is still blooming also.

I hope all are looking forward to a lovely weekend.


    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 1:36PM
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Chelone - I just skimmed again and saw Maine could be on the books. YOWSA!!! I too have always wanted to visit Maine:0) Count me in to help in any way. The only dates I could not make would be the same weekend as this year's bash. David is already planning on repeating the guitar course which is always that weekend.

Marian - sound like a pretty successful day. it's great to be able to check things off a list.

Hi PrairieMoon! My fingers are itching to make something and my head buzzing with ideas but until I get the garden jobs tied up I'm having to put crafts on hold.

Sue - love today's TGIF colors.

Michelle - yes, marble was speaking to me. I am meeting with a stone mason next week who might make the grotto (or shelter) with some of the rocks excavated from the site. The owner felt the statue should have a cover. There is a local guy who does the most beautiful dry stone walls. Meanwhile, hemlocks were planted today to screen the house next door and a path cleared through the woods.

Having gardened all day I am so completely exhausted I didn't even have a glass of wine as I knew it would knock me out. The job is fun and stressful in equal parts. Working on the site is also such a macho environment - there can be up to 20 guys working at the house on any day, not a single woman amongst them. I'm still figuring out the best to handle sexist comments. Today one of the irrigation guys informed me that he could pull up a lawn chair and watch me work all day. Argg!!

Well, I should go as both Annie and David are watching the debate. Middle school has inspired David to take an interest in current events and I beleive in supporting that. I just hope I can stay awake.


    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 9:45PM
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jak1(4 Ontario Can)

Friday afternoon.

Adrian and Next-Door-Neighbour (NDN) explode off the school bus, yelling "We're ready to PAR-TEE!".

I ask "What party?".

They reply "Buddy-Boy's birthday party - at the bowling alley - NOW!"

I look at NDN's Mom. She looks at me. We ask "Are you sure? Do you guys have an invitation?"

They reply "Oh yes! He gave out the invitations at school LAST WEEK!'

I ask Adrian where his is: in his desk at school. NDN says he lost his.

NDN's Mom digs through the kid's back-pack and sure enough, all crumpled up in the bottom, is the invitation.

NDN's Dad works at home and the phone is tied up for a conference call. We all run over here; I call Buddy-Boy's house - no answer. I call the bowling alley and get Buddy-Boy's Mom - "Oh yes, they are both invited, I just thought you were too busy to RSVP. Bowling from 4 to 5:30, pizza for dinner, pick them back up at 6:30."

NDN Mom says she can drive (DH had an eye doctor appointment and wasn't home). Adrian is invited to a different Buddy-Boy party on Sunday and we had already gotten the gift - so, I tell NDN Mom that I can put both names on the fgift. I tell Adrian to get ready for the party - he slops some water on his dirty little face, throws on a faded t-shirt and cut-off jeans (clean at least) and brushes his teeth. I run down to InterPhil's room to check in the cedar box for wrapping paper and cards. IP has a huge honking t.v. on the box. I haul the t.v. to IP's bed, open the box. All I can find is a gift bag that says "Merry Christmas". I look for a card - find one that my mother had lying around - she has been dead for ten years and bought very much old-lady cards - this one had little flowery For-Get-Me-Nots on it and says "Have a lovely day" and inside "May the Lord make your wishes come true today and every day all year". Perfect for a seven year old boy, right?

Throw the gift in the bag, put the names on the card, race over to NDN's house. NDN's Mom drops them off at the party.

They were only 5 minutes late. The whole scenario took no more than 20 minutes.

Adrian's comment later "Life is just full of surprises, right Nana?'.

Truer words were never spoken.

Good night all!

    Bookmark   September 27, 2008 at 5:10AM
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Julie, that's a funny story. You're a trooper, love the way you and NDN split the detective work, the tasks, and got the boys to the party. :) (the big honkin' TV on the cedar chest sounds about right for this house, too). Do I recall that you don't drive?

Mary, I know what you mean about the testosterone factor in the the building trades. It's not appreciably different in the marine trades. ;) The best way to deal with it, IMO, is to simply tune it out OR smile and tease them right back. I get called, "dear", "hon.", "cupcake", etc. at least once a day and have for years now. It's not uncommon to hear some crack about the "nice view" when I'm on the floor doing a layout. My take on it is that they like me, respect my abilities, and it's just their way of showing it. It doesn't really bother me, personally. Any chance you will be able to share some photos? I know I have to be very mindful of sharing photos of work I've done for customers. Yeah, I think Maine could be a fun destination, Mary. We have oodles of time to set a date that will suit everyone who would like to come and I'm able to get time off pretty much whenever I want to. So start looking at your calendars, everyone, and we'll figure out how much time we want to devote to it and what we'd like to do. Monique and Les. have highly recommended the Maine Botanical Gardens.

Sue, I'm impressed that you were a 4-Her, too. I didn't know you had rabbits! is it true they eat their droppings to get some vitamin or nutrient they can't synthesize for themselves? The AWS usually has a few rabbits for adoption (some of them are huge); I had no idea you can get them to use a litter pan, but DID suspect that keeping a sharp eye on their busy little mouths was pretty important. I always wanted a guinea pig but Mum and Dad nixed that idea repeatedly... .

It's going to be a real "wash out" this weekend. Wonder if Saucy's kids and husband have planned a camping trip? Had I had my wits about me I'd have taken a few shots of the swamp maples in the marsh area that are beautifully colored up. Cross your fingers that Kyle doesn't blow the leaves off them before I can get a pictures. They're really pretty, but there's still lots more color to come.

A quick spin around the yard the other day revealed the extent of my garden sloth... it is clear that I have no need for aspirin to deaden any pain. lol

I was fast asleep by debate time; I'll have to rely on the "post game wrap up" this morning on NPR (the Today show is the lamest excuse in the world for a news program).

    Bookmark   September 27, 2008 at 7:09AM
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Here is a "long" view of the house:

And here is a view of the bahn through the trees in the centre of the driveway circle:

    Bookmark   September 27, 2008 at 7:46AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Thanks for the photos Chelone.

Today is the first non-sunny day since my return from Edmonton. This weekend is jam packed with meeting all the folks who want to give is a bit tough.

The microwave kicked the bucket, which is fine with me, but DH is at a loss as to how to make tea and coffee without it.

Last night we were out with our French Club and everyone brought us more food to take home...My goodness, I could easily adjust to never cooking again.

This morning, brunch with neighbors, then visitors from Toronto this afternoon...

DD & DSIL are away together in the mountains where there is perhaps snow! Their 9 year old will join them today. Monday they return to their home.

Although I read along here, I am not remembering details. I assume that will happen some day...but no time limit is being set by anyone, thank goodness.

I hope everyone has something wonderful to enjoy this weekend...even if it is just being a sloth. ;)

    Bookmark   September 27, 2008 at 8:11AM
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