Idyll #341 Happy for all the good news

denisez10(SoCal)November 26, 2007

Marian truly summed up the spirit of the idylls: "Happy for all the good news, and sad with you that have sad news."

Happy 75th birthday, Marian!

And for Saucy's birthday, the garden fairies left their tutus behind after scuba diving in the pool (or reviving holiday cabbages)

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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

In spite of dark days & leftover turkey soup, there is hope in our household for good things to come: Christmas with the baby, a new puppy...and more.

Now I've been happy lately
Thinking about the good things to come
And I believe it could be
Something good has begun
I've been smiling lately
Dreaming about the world as one
And I believe it could be
Something good's bound to come

(Peace Train...Cat Stevens)

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 11:02AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Thanks Denise, for the pretty Passiflora pic. I envy your having them...:-) Nice title, too. :-)

Actually, Cindy, I wish I could have such good company frequently, but with less time preparing food. :-)
My chronic condition has prevented my asking folks in for a meal.I am hoping I can change that. (We had lots more get-to-gethers before we moved here.) My 'normal routine' is much too boring and unstimulating. I am happy that I was motivated to do some cleaning that was long past due.

Marie, I love your pic. I should know those flowers, but can't put my finger on the name? I am thinking Arctosis(sp).
The One Stop was not open Thanksgiving Day.

Saucy, I am proud of your courage, re. the wet suit and under water trip! I do not think I would be brave enough for that, and I sure couldn't tolerate the cold water.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 11:21AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

You reminded me...I have turkey soup in the making for this noon ( and later).

The afternoon we both have an eye appointment...for checkups. Will probably need new prescriptions.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 11:25AM
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Happy Birthday Marian !

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 3:21PM
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Happy Birthday Saucy !!

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 3:26PM
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Chelone, how nice that your brother showed up fo Thanksgiving dinner. I often thought of my mother that first year after her passing. She just wasn't there to relate things to anymore.
I love the pet name your mum gave you. "Lillybet"

Bug I'm not a good judge of age either. They do look well suited though(DS and Friend)and I love the Faux Cynthia bit Kathy came up with. LOL We don't care . All animal and kid pictures are welcome here along with the plants. Keep em coming everyone.

Mary, Your nephew must be a pretty special guy. It's good everyone enjoys him so much.
Wyatt mentioned wanting to get in the hot tub at Uncle Tims thursday, but it was darn chilly here. You northerners are sure a tougher bunch than me. I gues you just get used to it.
I was desperate to get outside today and figured I could go to the old foundation and get rocks for one of my unfinished projects. I did get one load, but it was cold which I was ok with, but it was misting rain and just kept getting a little harder. Rain or cold would have been alright but not both, so I gave up. It does seem to be clearing now though so maybe I'll try again.

Ah Cindy thanks for checking in. I was wondering about you. I really feel for you not being able to relax and enjoy home. I admire you for helping your friend out. I do wish she could move on with her life. Maybe she needs to do some volunteer work to get her out and about, maybe make some connections. Hope your dad recovers well from surgery.
I don't get much holiday spirit until the week before. I am still cringeing at the sound of Christmas music. I did sit with Wyatt and the wish book while he put W's on almost everything in it. LOL

Saucy, what a cool adventure for you. Kuddos to Jake on the photography. I even enjoyed that I could see the gazebo and neighborhood you were in. Did you take an underwater camera? Looking forward to more discriptions of what you saw. Was the dive your birthday present? Happy Birthday whichever day it was.
I do enjoy my ponds year round as they are part of the views from the windows. The birds and wildlife visit them too.

V, there was quite a bit about that woman on a recent program about Frank Lloyd Wright on tv.
I whis I could read more. I love to read but usually wind up with ghosting in my vision because I can't just read a little at a time. If it is a good book I just can't put it down. My vision in my left eye seems to be detriorating quickly. I have an eye exam coming up soon.
Is that wish as in someone feeding the dogs on a daily basis or for an upcoming trip?
I find it hard to ask someone to come here and feed when we travel. It's a little out of the way.

Denise ,I thought your hydrangea arrangements were cool too. And I am intrigued by your sons photo. So much to look at. I keep studying it. Yes "Fantastic Voyage feel".
Love the idea of Fairy tutus.

Maraian, there I go putting an extra a in your name again. LOL Anyway sounds like you had a lovely Thanksgiving sharing with friends. Thats what its all about.
Good to hear the B-12 is helping.
Sounds like Nolans old Doc had some serious problems of his own. Hopefully Nolan will feel much better too.
Sorry we missed your birthday. A belated Happy 75th Birthday.

LOL Sue, did Deannes neatnik ways rub off on you. We are still dealing with leaves too, and like you we have some trees that tend to hold theirs most of the winter.
I hope the changes you refer to are good ones.

Bug, love the color of those mums in Marians card, and Sunnys lovely red coat courtsey of Your DH.
Lovely verse,

Ah Kathy those shots warm me up. My hands are cold.
I'll see if I can rustle up a couple of pics for the birthday girls.
Later, Norma

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 3:38PM
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Happy Birthday Marian

Happy Birthday Saucy

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 3:54PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Oh dear, serious white stuff falling from the sky! Oh Canada!

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 3:55PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

May you motor long into the future in tranquil waters Marian!

I'm glad that the B12 is helping you. Randy's parents arrive Dec 18 for 10 days. I'll finally get to find out if the potassium supplements are helping his mother or not.

It's going to be hectic here at Christmas. Randy's parents will be here - and so will Jasper and Blue! Their 'parents' are spending Christmas at their condo in Mexico, celebrating early retirement. (At least... one of them is celebrating; the other is bemoaning still needing to work... :-)
We're a little worried about the chaos with three dogs here and MIL a bit shaky on her feet so we'll have to keep a close eye on things. On Christmas day, there will be 10 people (including 3 teenagers - 2 nephews and a niece) plus the dogs, so it could get a bit rowdy. I think the house is going to feel too small!

Saucy - that was a bold adventure! I enjoyed the picture and story. It's not the ocean, but this seemed to be the most appropriate birthday picture for you... :-)

Kathy - my Stokes order was a mixture of flowers and veggies. I ordered 5 different kinds of peas for the driveway pots. I select ones with varying maturities so I get to harvest over a 3-4 week period. The flower seeds were mostly annuals I grow for scent - blue Wave petunias (heavenly spicy clove scent in morning and evening), heliotrope Marine and a purple nicotiana that I haven't tried before but liked the color in the picture (and we all know how accurate that tends to be...:-)

It's a damp, gray November day here. In the morning we went out to get a gift certificate from a local garden center to give as a housewarming present for a friend who is moving next month from a condo to her first home that with a garden. She's looking forward to learning to garden - she's originally from Tanzania so has a lot to learn about gardening in this climate! This afternoon we were in the basement continuing the long overdue (8 years!) chore of getting rid of boxes and general junk from when we moved here. We had also let a former neighbour 'temporarily' store some of her stuff in the basement when her marriage broke up 7 years ago. She wasn't too happy about my current cleaning binge but did finally came on the weekend and removed her 21 boxes of stuff! November ranks up there with February as my least favorite time of year...

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 3:59PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

gb - rain here... maybe you need to start singing:

Mon pays ce n'est pas un pays, c'est l'hiver
Mon jardin ce n'est pas un jardin, c'est la plaine
Mon chemin ce n'est pas un chemin, c'est la neige
Mon pays ce n'est pas un pays, c'est l'hiver.....

That's what always runs through my head during early snowfalls :-)

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 4:17PM
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Happy Birthday Saucy

Happy Birthday Marian

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 4:21PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Beautiful BD pics everyone! I'll respond better when the dialation goes out of my eyes...

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 4:42PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Here we use pliers and coat hanger wire Michelle!
I'm enjoying all the birthday wishes too.
Is Deanne out there snapping bird photos?

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 5:14PM
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You guys are too much. I am not much of a birthday card giver and here you all have done them for me!

I had a very nice day with a big breakfast with Nick after the kids went to school. I have had a very nice day just because :) I got a beautiful bouquet of roses to end the day.

Happy Birthday Marian!

I will slip back here in the morning - the computer is needed....


    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 7:33PM
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Hello Idylls, and a special Hello to our birthday ladies Marian and Saucy the Sea Nymph.

Cindy, glad you had some time to check in , sad you are still in the throes of The Man Who Came To Dinner so to speak. Ive made mental note that I think you have mentioned rather large tulip planting schemes going on at Casa de Cindy, bet we will get some dandy photos next spring (which is of course just around the corner) . I have my 200 plus still in the wine refrigerator out in the garage. We have had some warm days (10 to 15 degrees above normal) and I never like to plant them until I feel pretty good that cool temps are here to stay. Many bulbs here will start to throw up foliage in fall- I have Dutch iris up, freesias up, ranunculas and blue hyacinth. They will typically get a few leaves and then hang out till spring , though the freesias and ranunculas often suffer frost damage,

Norma, what kind of project are you up to with the rocks ? Maybe you posted it and I forgot ! My bad if so. IÂm kind of envious of folks who have a supply of on site rocks to uses, though I expect IÂd feel differently if I had to dig boatloads of them up every time I wanted to make a new planting area.

Marian, doesnÂt it feel great to get neglected areas cleaned out ? I am 80 percent done with the closets now, and have chipped away at the garage. IÂm happy to hear that both you and Nolon are experiencing some improvement on health woes.

Ahh Âbug, good ole Cat Stevens. Those two classic albums of his got played to death at my house. Are you reading up on the latest in puppt training psychology? I was really impressed with the job that my DD and her sig other have done with their dog. She was just incredibly well behaved and pleasant to be around while here. DD accused me of spoiling her when I went to Petco while all were asleep and bought her a toy and a box of natural peanut butter doggie treats. DD even went out back and poop-scooped before she left on Sunday. Sometimes those kids turn out ok !

And, a word here for Katie :

Hi Katie, my name is Doobie and my Mom said I have to send you a greeting even though you are a dog, and as you can see IÂm taking a nap because I am exausted after having to move to my front yard sleeping spot from my back yard sleeping spot.

Get Well Soon Katie !!

Nite all,

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 8:55PM
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Great birthday pictures everyone. I tried but my program kept freezing up. Maybe tomorrow. N

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 9:02PM
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Happy Birthday Marian!!

Happy Birthday Saucy!!


    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 6:50AM
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Sarah needed to finish her project on the naked mole's a strange little creature that has gained much notariety thanks to a Disney show - they even have an exhibit at D. World. They're naked.

Today has been busy from the moment I rose! No easily obtainable breakfast, so I had to scramble a couple of eggs and throw some banana bread in the toaster - all smiles for no cereal :)

No underwater camera for those who asked - but the instructor brought one and took our pictures - I hope he sends me a copy. I guess the one's you buy at the store are only good to 10ft at the most. I am looking at the "housing" to make my regular camera water proof. It surely is pretty under the surface....I saw lots of purple "seaweed" attached to rocks with little shrimp darting in and out....and the movement of the ocean makes everything sway back and forth. Scuba is a very laid back sport it seems, though the gear is heavy when you're on land - you'd never know it while underwater, though. Sue, I hope you get certified, it'd be fun to plan something! We're thinking we'd like to take Fridays off and hunt for lobsters....

Getting certified (being certifiable?) was a part of my plan to get a life :) I figured since Nick is certified for the fire dept (we have a lake in town) then we could do this together. I missed my knitting class because of my dad's surprise trip. Bee Keeping starts in January.

Kathy, your cats seem to really ham it up for the camera! Sounds like you had a nice visit with your daughter.

Woody, where are our pictures taken? What a beautiful place! Can't wait to hear more of the new place being erected in your neighborhood.....sometimes I think it would've been cheaper/easier to just tear this one down!

Cindy, hopefully you've called a truce by now. You don't need the extra stress. Glad you got some garden work in....somehow that seems to clear my mind. Walking helps too.

You're all making me wish I'd grabbed the turkey carcass so I could have some soup. I am thinking of grabbing an "on sale" ham and making lentils when we've made it to the ham bone.

The birds certainly are entertaining this year and I picture Deanne sitting out in her blind taking picture after picture of her sharp shinned hawk.

Thank you all so much again for making my day extra special. This year I woke up happy and had a great day for no reason other than I feel happy everyday. In year's past I think I was waiting for someone to do something or give me something to make me happy, and that always set me up for if I have one wish, it'd be to be this happy for all my birthdays to come :)


(who is going to NYC this weekend to meet a friend from TN!)

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 10:21AM
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What a lovely mackerel sky this morning. My DH's birthday present finally arrived yesterday, ordered weeks ago. His BD was the day before Thanksgiving and was pretty much swallowed up by holiday prep. He just drove off to deliver some work for me, the new CD by the Irish band Planxty and corgie in tow.

Norma, I'm intrigued by your casual comment re the "old foundation," where you collect rocks. How old and foundation to what?

Cindy, I'm sorry but your rommate bellowing up the stairs at you "cant we just move on?" brought on more giggles.

Woody, I know that's a lock on a river, but which?

Kinda the annoying child/50 questions type of post.

Kathy, silly cat poses, got those in spades too.

Mary, beautiful pictures of (a) a dogwood? (b) a sumach of some sort? (c) a chartreuse-lvd miracle of peru? (d) cannas and zinnias! What's my score? The elegance of the dogwoods is stunning.

Camellias and Grandpa Otts morning glories I can ID.

Saucy, what an agenda you've set for yourself, good for you. I've just really become aware of what happens to male bees, poor little buggers. My oldest son is heading to NYC first week of Dec.

Lots of distracting questions so we don't become too anxious over Katie...

I recently was googling Wright too after seeing a film where the Ennis-Brown house was used extensively, concrete-stamped, Mayan themed. I don't mean to be catty, but lots of his houses have structural issues. I found an architectural site yesterday speaking to this, that you'll never see a Walmart or a Kmart with a leaky roof, but Falling Waters, you might spring a few. Different agendas. Wright's Japanese hotel apparently withstood a severe earthquake, so there you go.

Michelle, I've got to find me some number 9 wire. Desert island must-haves, now it's Neosporin, WD-40, and No. 9 wire. But which book?

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 11:13AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

a quickie post....

Saucy - your b'day picture is from the nearby marina. There's a nice walk along the lake over to it and we walk there regularly. If anyone remembers the pictures in May of Lake Ontario when Charlotte, gb and her DH came at trillium time, the lake walk we were on ends at the marina where Randy took that picture a few weeks ago.

Marian's b'day picture is from Lock 3 on the Welland Canal between Lake Ontario and Lake Erie. We were there in in September. We saw two boats go through - the small boat in that picture and a larger research vessel - but no lakers unfortunately. I was hoping to see a really big boat go through. It's an impressive sight even from the highway you can see in the picture so it must be pretty amazing up close. The lock is not very wide so it's got to be an incredibly tight fit!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 1:01PM
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The vet called me at 5:30 last night and said those magic words: 'Katie woke up'.

The surgery went VERY well and I was able to go visit her today. She had eaten breakfast and she even took a few steps. Much more rapid recovery than they expected and everyone said that when I got there. When she stood up to see me she was vibrating like a harp, and I had a tough time getting her to lay down. She wouldn't take treats, maybe she thought she had to sit or speak for them and was too tired (: When she did try to lay down she peed on the little rug. She'll be incontinent for a while. But has to be crated for 8 weeks, no muscle movement allowed, so the challenge will be to keep her dry and comfortable for the first few weeks.

She has an interesting new 'do' and a daunting row of staples down her back. Her spine is shaved to her hiney and then there are random shaved areas all over for different reasons and she has sticky fur curling this way and that. My sweet mess.

Her fentanyl patch has yesterday's date on it in magic marker and looks like a name tag at a convention. At the same time they were marking her up for surgery I was having sentimental moments in the kitchen with my own sharpie marker.

That's the Adirondack chair she occasionally gnaws on when she's impatient about something. (She's never touched anything else.) I know this particular artwork happened this summer. I usually sand and paint the arm a few times a year, and am so glad I left it alone this time.
Words from a greyhound friend became my mantra and proved prophetic:

" even as they're putting her under, she will still be happy. If the worst happened, you would know that she went to sleep happily and that you saved her from years of debilitating pain. But the worst won't happen and by this time tomorrow she will be on her way to recovery and you'll finally be able to have a good night's sleep. "

I know we're not out of the woods yet, but she's doing well and the vet is really pleased and so am I. Only Katie remains to be 'pleased' and it will all be worth it and that will come :) Thank you all for thinking of us and remembering the date! Your kind words meant more than I can ever tell you.

Cynthia (and Katie an hour away sleeping soundly.)

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 3:35PM
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Great news Cynthia!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 4:12PM
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What a relief!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 4:37PM
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Cynthia - what great news. My fingers and toes are still crossed for her but I'm wearing a big smile. Thank you for stopping by to give us the update. Hugs to you both.

Denise - 4 out of 4!! The dogwood trees were from an IU4 garden. One of our woody experts might be able to fill in the latin name. The other is my Tiger Eye Sumac, Zowie Zinnia, Tropicana canna and Mirabilis Limelight.

Martie - what a pretty rose!

Woody - how neat to see another canal. The kids love watching the locks on the Erie canal being operated and it provides one of our favorite biking destinations along the tow path.

Tonight I need to finish a book before book club tomorrow and start making invitations for a 50th Birthday bash I'm throwing for a friend Dec 22nd. I also need to drop Annie and friend at an orchestra practice and throw together something for dinner. I'd better get moving.

I've been having a nagging worry about Eden, concerned there might be something wrong, perhaps with a family member. If anyone knows anything perhaps they could email me. We all need a break from time to time but sudden disappearances make me nervous. Either way I miss her;0(


    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 5:32PM
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Great news Cynthia!


    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 5:50PM
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Now is one of those times I wish I'd mastered the use of the pretty graphics for special birthday cards... alas! Nonetheless, here are my offerings for the milestone (it needn't be viewed as a milLstone) of 75 years.

I have chosen these two because I've long admired your interest in the natural world, MARIAN, and have been frequently amazed at the ease with which you call up information about parts of the country unfamiliar to me.

This is a view of the Osmunda cinnamomeas through the wild blueberries (too lazy to look up the proper name). This is at the very southern edge of our lawn. About 3 steps to the left of the picture and you'd be on the "south lawn". Ferns are a perfect boundry for turf!

The soil here is rocky, acid, yet wondefully fertile. I particularly love the natives. I adore mosses, and especially love the dainty, evergreen, creeping groundcover, Guatheria procumbens (checkerberry). Here is something I snapped just because I am always amazed at what pretty combinations Mother Nature conjures up.

My fond and sincere wishes for a healthy, fun-filled, and bountiful coming year. Hugs to you, too, my friend!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 5:52PM
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Dear Katie,

I KNOW if I'd ever chewed the furniture mine would've had me gassed without a second thought; you have to stop doing that sort of thing! You're lucky you don't live with someone who hates dogs... .

I know you aren't comfy now. I wasn't, either, but it gets better, and your fur won't look quite so strange in a month/so.

Your friend,

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 6:00PM
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Me: "Camellias and Grandpa Otts morning glories I can ID."

Mary: "Martie - what a pretty rose!" lol

So that's Rex -- he's ginormous!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 6:11PM
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He's not THAT big, but he is a powerful boy. More than enough to scare the livin' daylights of many, lol.

I love this shot of him:

These are good, too:

Proof positive that regular beating bring a dog nicely into line!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 6:35PM
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Saucy, you crack me up regularly. I guffawed raucusly at you being the Cardigan Corgi's dream cow... .

I looked for the baby oil in Jake's pictures but couldn't quite find it. What exactly, DID you wear under the neoprene? ;)

I have always wanted to learn to "dive"; always too cheap, though. GOOD for you. The natural world is amazing and to be able to explore such an "out of reach" portion of it at your (relative) leisure must be terrific.

Here's my birthday wish for you... the lady must be looking for the baby oil... ?

Happy belated birthday, my friend.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 6:46PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Oakie eyes are clear

Kathy, I love that scenery pic. What is the location? I presume you took it?
You can't imagine the accumulation of grime in our house. Since we have no AC, the windows and doors are open day and night in warm weather, and all the dust and pollen get in and on everything.Then in the winter it is the ashes and debris from burning wood. My housekeeping had almost come to an end because of my ailings.( I am feeling that the B 12 is going to reverse that.) The vestibule and livingroom get the worst of the debris, and all the indoor plants don't help any.
I sure need to do all the closets, including the linen closet.
LOL...Doobie is a beaut! A typical kitty pose...warming his tummy.

LOL, Norma ! That is the funniest spelling of my name yet....but the BD wish is much appreciated.
Yes, that doctor has definitely got problems of his own, they have been ongoing for some time. I do hope he is helped by the rehab.

Mary, the tree pic is lovely. I thought they might be ginkgos, but see that Denise correctly id'd them as dogwoods. My old eyes can't see the leaves very well, and the form 'does' look like both varieties. Maybe they are Cornus kousa, or C.controversa variegata if they are huge trees with variegated leaves. I would love to have at least one of each. :-)

Susan, how appropriate for you to remember my BD with a lock picture! one of my favorite sites is the Miraflora locks in the Panama Canal. I have saved a lot of the scenes from there in my are a few:

The last one is really a hoot! I was seeing the perigrine falcons frequently, then suddenly the vulture showed up on the perch. :-)
I envy you for having the marina so close. It would be one of my favorite places to walk, as you do.

Michelle, I love those yellow lilies and achillea. A great combo.

Saucy, how nice that you got a bouquet of roses! I spent the day baking! :-) Didn't even get a "Happy Birthday" from Nolon, but got a phone call from Tim.
I like your attitude...about waking up happy. I wish I could attain that attitude. I really have no legitimate reason to not feel that way....and many reasons to be happy, regardless of what is going on around me.

Martie, those are beautiful roses....are they wild?

Denise, I wish you'd got a pic of that mackeral sky. I saw one the other day.
Ha ! Your DH has the same date of birth as I ( Except the year...LOL ).
I like Irish music too. Lately I have been listening to all kinds of good music on the computer as I set here doing other Idylling, playing solitaire, and checking the Panama locks. Some of the tunes really strike a nostalgic chord and I replay them 2-3 times.( Like "Spanish Eyes"...[don't ask me why], and "Blue Bayou", and "Don't Cry For me Argentina".) There are many sites of midis. I wish there were more with singing along with the music. I guess I ought to get me one of those new gadgets that I can put all my favorites on.

Cynthia, I am so happy for you and Katie. What a relief for you.

Ahhhh ! Chelone ! I love those pics ! I attempted to grow Gaultheria procumbens but it didn't 'take'. Thank you so much for your kind and touching wishes. I am beginning to feel as if it just may happen ! Who knows, I just may get well enough to go visit you !!! ( I'd call for an appointment first! LOL ).
Great pics of Rex aka Wrecks. I'll stick with cats, thank you...;-)

As of yesterday...our eye doctor has me scheduled for lazer surgery on my left eye this Thursday. New prescription will follow, I think. Nolon had a much better report. His vision is lots better than mine. Cataracts not needing taken care of yet, and macular degeneration not progressed at all from the report several years ago ! Too bad he isn't the driver in our family. I suspect the recurring pain in my right eye will go away after the left one is corrected.


    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 7:52PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 8:23PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

I love Wendy in this picture and wonder what Chelone said to get her howling like that.

So, anyone have any thoughts on a location for IU5?


    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 8:28PM
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Happy Tuesday to all-and how fun its been to see the interesting photos everyone has been posting. Scenery, pets and cool plants -3 things all Idylls seem to love !
Cynthia , Im so glad you checked in with a Katie report and that all went well so far. She must have received all those positive Idyll vibes. I hereby send more out your way , wishing for a smooth and on schedule (or maybe ahead of schedule) recuperation period.

Michelle, its 12 and 14 gauge vineyard wire here..oh yeah and duct tape too , lol !

Saucy, that cat may look likes hes hamming it up, but he is a contortionist sleeper who puts himself into these odd positions and is completely oblivious to whatever is going on around him One of my favorite pics is a pre-digital camera one, maybe Ill try Marians trick of photoing the photo so I can post it. Loved hearing your upbeat birthday sentiments- it is amazing what a simple thing like attitude can do for ones morale. Seems trite , but I look around me(especially in the workplace) and see people who are negatively focused and poison their own lives with it. Sadly, they often bring others down with them. So, like Chelone, I wonder now what was under the wetsuit??? And you must tell us if you felt cold ? Do you know what the water temp
was ? And how deep was your dive ? How long ?? Lookin for details here.

Denise , Im gonna have to check out Planxty. Or should I ? I was in the local CD store this weekend (I guess the Wherehouse got bought out by somebody,) but I was looking for Polar Express-I never buy movies unless I expect to view them many times , got a used one for 11.99- and could find no Ozomotli or Teddy Thompson. Got Pink Martini though. Thats why I buy my CDs on the internet, especially jazz and classical. Local stores have such a limited selection. Re: FL Wright.. maybe some of these structures need to be viewed as art rather than buildings, and need to be maintained as such. Not practical to live in, but enriching to view.

Mary, I share your concern about Eden. I hope she is just experiencing a very busy time that has cut into Idyll-ing.

Chelone , what a flurry of photos youve posted ! I love the foresty scenes of the compound and the views of Rexs largeness.

Marian, the view is taken near Sedona, by my DS. I have many photos that are not digital, since I lived there for a few years in the early 70s.My DS went last year so we have some nice photos now that he took. Although it has changed a great deal (and not for the better IMHO) the natural beauty remains . And Im sure you can appreciate ,being sort of from that neck of the woods, how compelling those canyon lands are.

Ok, time to sign off and eat some dinner.

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 9:10PM
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Hurrah for Katie and Cynthia...may everthing continue to go well.

More lovely birthday pictures and nice to meet REX.

I spent the day wrestling rocks. It warmed up into the low 50s and was perfect for heavy work.
Kathy I am terracing a slope for a walkway near my garden shed to cut down on washout when we get heavy rain.
Denise, the old foundation I refer to is the rock foundation and cellar of an old log house. I don't know how old it is. I really should try to research it. There is only faint remmants of the logs on one and a fallen down chimmney on another. There are five foundation one of which I think was a spring house and probably a couple of barns or sheds. I think at least two were houses. There is a depression that runs through the woods that I'm sure was a roadway at one time. I keep hoping I will find something among the rocks but I think it was pretty well picked over before we ever bought the property. A couple of old plow shares is all that I have found. This is the best time of year to gather rocks from there, less worry about snakes and ticks. I am a rock hound from way back and get more excited when I make a nice find than when I get presents. LOL

I can name everyone in that picture except the lady in pink. Is that Cindy?


    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 9:39PM
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Sue - fond memories from IU4. I'd be open to any suggestions for next year. Here was something I had fun playing with. Isn't Saucy glamorous!!


    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 9:46PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

I heard from Eden this evening and all is well. Bella is learning to use the mouse and play with puzzles!

Pheeeew! Katie, take it slow and easy! DD's Indy must do the same these days and it has been almost impossible to make her remain calm and indoors.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2007 at 10:10PM
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Rex: Pitbull/Great Dane? He looks quite majestic in photos, no matter how goofy you claim he is.

What incredible photos from everyone. My photography has nothing going for it at this point but good intentions. Can't say I've been that close to a vulture before, Marian.

I got nothing whatever done today, sitting on 200 pages due tomorrow. Family bombshells exploded after the holidays, as they usually do, and much discussion of same with my mom. Joseph the cat claimed two mice, escorting them off this mortal coil, but we saved the third. He must have found the nest and decimated a whole family of mice. I hate it when creatures choose lousy spots for their nests, it's so disheartening. Thoughtful of him to leave us the entrails strewn about, yuck. Endless interruptions in the home office, with people bursting in with wild-eyed enthusiasm to tell me something or other. And perhaps puttered in the garden a bit too long...

Thank you, Woody, for that link to the Welland lock. And Norma, I'm insanely jealous now of you rummaging thru old foundations, repurposing the stones. You wouldn't happen to have any photos lying around...

Kathy, I haven't listened to Planxty yet but DH did and wasn't too enthused. We've been spoiled by Van the Man (Morrison) and the Chieftains. It may not be for purists, but their Irish Heartbeat is a favorite here. Carrickfergus still gives shivers. Pink Martini sounds great and will check on others.

Indy, the kissing bandit, and Reed, what a team. Gosh, that's adorable. Nice to hear Eden is well.

Martie, I've got an order in on the Raspberry Truffle salvia! World of Salvias, Rick Dufresne.

Sleep tight, Katie. G'night all.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 12:12AM
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LOL, Mary!

Rex = German Shepherd x Bull Mastiff, according to the shelter who received him the 2nd. time and to which he was returned before being packed off to the shelter where we found him (got that?). So, who really knows? Pit Bull crossed my mind, too, I figured they'd probably know.

Marie, such a neat little incision on Indy's leg! like poor Katie-kins, Rex was stapled down the the entire "front" of the knee. And they looked pretty rugged.

I hope we will get to see some post-surgical shots of Katie... my curiosity about all things medical and forensic is really getting the better of me. Wrecks has asked for some, too. He was most eager to show Katie his scar, IF she'd show him her's. Then I reminded him he doesn't even have one!

Cynthia, I hope you're hangin' tough with the enforced seperation. The gnawing worry is the worst. Good thoughts to you and, as with the others, I await the next update.

Marian, are you suffering a birthday "hang-over" (from too many cards) yet? ;)

    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 5:42AM
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Good morning, all!

The rose is called 'Soaring Spirits' (Carruth 2006) and is a hybrid off 'Fourth of July' and 'Berries and Cream'. Put to market just this year as a climber/sprawler. No multi-year trials, yet, but anything that's a relative to 'FofJ' has got to be good.

So glad you heard from Eden, Marie!! Thought of her while sorting pepper seeds ...

Hooray for Katie!!!!! That she could stand up at all with a Fentanyl patch is amazing to me.

Have been enjoying the pics of various parts of the continent and realize I need to see more of my own country and its neighbors.

Glad everyone appears well (think of you every single day, Cindy).

Only garden related news is that the roses are fully mulched and a huge Thank You to the yard guy at Home Depot who pulled down 10 frozen bags from a very high shelf so they would stay safe :-) Wouldn't even take a cuppa but did ask that I remember to recycle the plastic.

Got Rich to look at a few pics of brand new Boston Terrier babies. Got a low moan but no "no." We'll see .... I think he shares a hatred of dogs with Chelone LOL.

Yeah for hump day!


    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 7:14AM
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I open the Idylls to find a lot of chatter :) How nice.

I'm having a hard time getting out of here this morning - Sarah needed a ride to school so she could shop at the school bookstore (first time, very exciting!) and then it is trash day, so I ran about looking through the woods for anything that blew our way in the winds of yesterday.....and then all the reading :)

For inquiring minds: I wore my swimsuit under (Nick and other men wore their underwear)....nothing but a good fight is required to get the thing on (though on the second day, a good lotion helped things along :)....the wrestling of the suit makes your body heat up. Water seeps in while you're in the water, and your body warms it to make a nice barrier between you and the ocean water. Should you have to pee, you are welcome to do it in your suit....I chose to hold it which became quite an urgent situation by the time we found a bathroom (bath houses are closed this time of year). The water temps were 48 degrees, and we went to 30 feet. I guess in New England the water gets dark fast when you go much deeper.

The same good fight is required to remove the thing and then your wet body is exposed to the air! I brought a camp shower filled with hot water in a cooler and placed my clothes inside so they were heated. I am one smart cookie sometimes :) Nick forgot his towel so I had to share even though I didn't want to. I threw on big comfy warm clothes over my swimsuit and then a hot shower when we got home.

You need some body fat to do this in the winter months, I'd say.

Better hit the gym. So glad for updates on Eden, too.
Mary, I don't think I've ever been accused of being glamorous! I'll take it :)


    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 8:56AM
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Its cold, windy and downright blustery here today.

bug, Reed seems to have mastered sitting up. Isnt the internet a wonderful sharing tool? Not the same as being there, but Im sure it helps.

Norma, yes that is Cindy.

Saucy, Im glad you had such a "happy" birthday. I think you have hit on it with the statement about waiting for someone do something or give you something to make you happy. We have to first find it within ourselves.

Kathy, Doobie could easily be on one of those funny cat calendars.

I love that cement/rock couch!

We have visited the locks at Sault Ste. Marie linking Lakes Superior and Huron. The first time we went my son was 11 and was absolutely fascinated. Ill have to look up the pictures.

I put up the Christmas tree last night and began some other holiday decorating. I need to be gone tonight and tomorrow night, so I guess the mess will just have to sit there.

Back to work.


    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 10:28AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Good morning all...

Sue, I love the combo pic for my BD. Very pretty ! Thank you.
I am thinking the group pic for Saucy was the one where a cat was doing it's 'wash'. Am I correct? ( Probably not....)

Kathy, one of the magazines that I used to subscribe to was the Arizona Highways. It frequently featured the Sedona Area. I was through Arizona many years ago, ( even lived in Peoria,AZ. for a month in the 50s), but haven't seen the Sedona area in person. The state and the magazine are full of beautiful scenery. I still have a lot of the mags...gave a bunch to a cousin's wife. She is a native Arizonan. ( The 'goat/fence' cousin's wife.)

Mary, how did you do that pic that Saucy and ? are looking at? Neat. I agree with Chelone...LOL ! (at your comment). :-)

Oooo,Marie, poor Indy's leg looks so vulnerable. I'm glad you got a favorable update on Eden.

Denise, I think my Miraflora lock's pics were misleading. I didn't take them....they are from the live cam web site. There are 3 differant live cameras that I check out daily.
Sorry about your post holiday blow-up.
Yuck ! I was sitting here eating my breakfast sausage and biscuit sandwich when I read your account of the mice entrails!!! ick !

No, Chelone, I can never get too many BD cards and wishes. I was going to quietly let the day pass, but 'was' hoping....:-)
I noticed you let my comment about visiting you slide by...LOL. I am thinking a ride on a cruise ship to Maine may be the way to go....LOL.

Martie, thanks for the info on the rose. It 'does' resemble some of our wild ones. Can you buy it 'own root' ?
I don't do well with roses, and worse with grafted ones.

Saucy,thanks for the reminder that today is trash pickup day here too. I don't have a full bag, but enough in the recycling bag to go out.

Doing lots of laundry today, to prepare for the kid's weekend visit. And I need to figure out what food may appeal to the girls...:-).
I bought more bedding yesterday. I sure do not want my AC/forced heat company to be cold while here. I had plenty for warmer months, but they seldom come in cold weather, and sometimes I have a hard time getting the house warm.
I need to remind them to dress warmly. If they don't, I have plenty of things they can put on while here.
Thank goodness no inclement weather is predicted.


    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 10:32AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Hi Marian,

Saucy's birthday greeting photo was taken this past July during IU4 at Chanticleer. For those of you who don't know the players, front row l to r: Mary, Cynthia, Wendy, Chelone, V and Cindy. Standing in the back: Monique, Les, me and Saucy. A few of us were in rare form that day.

The combo in your greeting was actually one of my favorite containers this year-a Gartenmeister fuchsia that I somehow wintered over, coleus of some sort (Deanne will know the variety), and that wonderful bloom til it drops trailing blue Torenia.

Good news for Katie!

Mary, how in the world did you create that "work of art"? Cool, very cool.

Tonight is our annual physical inventory kick off. I'll probably be at work til 7:30 or so then off to an 8 PM dinner reservation. It's me and four male co-workers. I call it my annual date

Good to hear Eden is OK. Where's Deanne?


    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 3:28PM
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Watch those toes, the squirming, and the face... and there is NO doubt that being able to sit up and wear a green fleece suit to receive Indy kisses is the BEST thing in the world. Life is grand, ain't it?

I am glad to know Eden is well, as well. Thanks for the report, and I'm sorry I wasn't on top of it enough to mention it sooner. I hope her cheerful voice rejoins the chorus and her creativity surfaces again SOON.

My boss plays a lot of Celtic music (Eileen Ivers and Natalie MacMaster, among others). I enjoy it, but find that 3 CDs worth on shuffle is MORE than enough over the course of nearly 8 hrs.; can sound irritatingly similiar... like crummy Country and Western (right, Kathy?). I have liked what I've heard from Pink Martini very much, though don't own any (perhaps Santa will help with that oversight). Another house of fans for Van the Man (Wavelength is a fav., so is Tupelo Honey). Cat Stevens reminds me of Jr. High and early HS. There is a tune by him that I love, I THINK it's "Oh Very Young", but I can't quite recall. The words and sentiment are great; what a talented guy!

Norma, are your hands killing you, yet? sounds as though you put in a fair day's work! There is no shortage of rocks in and around the Compound. And, as I'm sure Deanne will attest! it's a lot of work to cull them from the soil and put them to use in a creative way. I'm a fine one to ask, but I will anyway... pictures?

Naked Mole rats... they're from the deserts of Africa. And they are some SERIOUSLY strange lookin' little critters. Don't they eat the dirt they excavate and then -hit it out somewhere else? no matter, they definitely work hard to make a livin', and that's worthy of respect in my book! Appreciation of hard, crummy, oft disregarded work is paHt and paHcel of the noHtheHn New England mentality. ;) (If I have that dietary habit correct it's probably because I think it could be useful here).

Weather has turned cold here and the forecast is for more of same with increasing inclemency. No matter; 'tis the season. But serves as a stern reminder to take the awnings down SOON, stupid!

Somewhere in this house there are a couple of photos of your's truly sporting fishnet stockings, 4" heels, and the top of wetsuit. No kidding. I recall a great deal of shimmying to get into it, Saucy. lol.

An area "puppy mill" was seized over the summer and the dogs are being put up for adoption over the next few weeks. Many are "toy" breeds. There has been more discussion about getting Rex a pet. Whaddya think? Chihuahua, Papillon, Pomeranian? I can't deal with dogs that snore... no Pugs or anything with affected breathing apparatus. "Sticky" gets the "hairy eyeball", too.

My hands are killing me. I've been working on a dreadful cockpit interior for some crapcan. I ripped the bolsters and the inserts down to (mostly rotten) wood back in MAY! the jerk finally returned our repeated calls and it's been kneecaps and elbows (sanitized) to get it done. I would like to get my hands around his skinny neck, but probably wouldn't have the strength to give him the throttling he deserves.

Garage doors will be installed next Tuesday. Insulation, the following week, and we're going to call the drywaller tonight. Next move will be do order the woodstove for the Salon. After that we should be able to "stop the bleeding". I wonder how Katie-kins' tab stands up to the garage? I think I probably have you "beat", Cynthia, but maybe not... . Oh, and you'll love this: I have a nasty, nagging suspicion that Rex has blow out the OTHER ACL. (shoulda gassed him when he chewed the FIRST pair of slippers).

I know I've forgotten important things. Will remember as soon as I hit, "send", doubtless.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 3:40PM
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Hiya everyone, left coast checking in here. I just got off the phone with a Los Angeles radio station from which I am trying to get info on the availability of archival recordings of a program than ran there in the late 70s early 80s. This was a radio soap opera spoof that ran in episodes during drive time. Various members of my family have been trying to track down recordings of it for years. No dice so far. This station is no longer locally owned so I would be surprised if anyone who works there even remembers those shows. Well see.

Marie, thanks so much for giving us our much needed Eden update !

Mary, that museum shot is great ! Maybe you need to frame the shot of Chelones posterior as she climbs under the bushes ! (sorry Chelone )
Marian, I just sent all my old Arizona Highways mags that Ive been hoarding for more years than I care to mention to the recycle. Part of my magazine purge project ! I know that people often think of AZ as just desert , but there is so much natural beauty there, and if Im not mistaken the Flagstaff area and Mogollian Rim contains the largest Ponderosa pine forest in the USA.

Well Sue, as you kick off your Phys inventory season, I am fixing to conduct my 5th of 5 on Friday. We started in Sept. I may or may not have to do some auditing on Saturday, but since this is our smallest location we are hoping to finish up on Fri. And, hallelujah, this will be my last PI ever after 20 years with this company. Yeeehah !
Go for the dog with the least fur . Dont they have anything of a more moderate size ? I would hate to think what would happen if Rex rolled over onto a chi-hooo-a-hooo-a. I like the Celtic stuff in small doses too. ..and Denise I have that Cheiftans/Van Morrison CD too. Guess I better check out this Raspberry Salvia.

Michelle, I am trying to figure out when to put up my tree. DS and I will be flying out on the 23rd so I guess I will shoot for the weekend of the 9th. I usually take it down on New Years eve, but Im toying with the idea of taking it down before we leave.
Saucy, I think I am a warm-water lady. Will you try this again this summer ?

Hey Deanne, are you still holed up in the bird blind ??

All for me tonight
Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 9:00PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Marian, Indy's leg is healing well. Keeping her calm is hard, she so loves her walks on the woods!

Yes Chelone, that green outfit is really nice I think. Sarah made it just this week and I'm so proud of her doing this. Not a domestic bone in her body, but somehow the mechanics of the sewing machine appeals to her. YES!

Michelle, I have newfound respect for the internet. I'd be miserable without the photos and videos. I have a friend with a first granddaughter (named Charlotte!) born on Friday. The baby lives in England and my friend only expects to meet her in a year or so. I can't imagine...

Mary, I so love your Saucy card...Clever girl!

VERY annoyed with DH today, supremely so. Until he came home with a box of chocolate covered ginger, two bouquets of flowers and an appropriate card. Maybe tomorrow will be better. You'd think after 40 years....sheesh.

I'm sick of winter already. Can spring be far behind?

A demain!

    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 9:50PM
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For some reason, I had Mary pegged as Babs, so the ID is much appreciated.

'bug, is that a primula? And I gots to know how to make my DH that contrite!

Here's some leaf textures from the front garden:

The corydalis in the lower left is a rampant seeder, Corydalis heterocarpa, a first-rate pest, but in the right spot (and it tries out ALL the spots) it can be lovely. Nauseating sweaty-sweet smell to the leaves. Yellow flrs like lutea but a massive plant. I complain about these frisky seeders but miss them when they fail to show. Where's my Verbena bonariensis disappeared to the past few summers? I know you guys don't need to see photos, but I just learned to do that nifty link trick today so had to try it.

I've been home since the Wed before Thanksgiving cooking, cleaning, editing transcripts, and I'm definitely ready to share unfamiliar rooms with strangers again all day, lol.

I did give the Planxty Irish CD a listen today coming home from the haircutter. Skipped most of the vocal tracks, liked the instrument-only ones. Not sure what kind of an endorsement that is. I too take Irish music in smallish doses. The haircutter, a really nice woman about my age, had taken a Medit. cruise recently, and I asked which ports she'd stopped at. Oh, we flew into Paris, then we left Paris and went to France. From there we went to Geneva in Italy, and then...sheesh, Americans and geography. Sweeping generalization, maybe.

Great code Sue and Kathy chatter away in. Just let me know when you're dropping stock tips ;) That's gotta be a great feeling, your last year at this job, and I'm so excited about your move. Doobie and your DS come too, right?

Marian, I told my DH you're monitoring the live video feeds from the Panama Canal and he was most impressed. He usually gets drafted into replacing-the-battery duties of the various cameras and monitors in the harbor which are suspended off bridges and all manner of supports. He has absolutely no fear of heights, whereas I tremble thinking about it.

You guys can't be sick of winter yet. Marian has already used a word to describe snow I'd never heard before -- skifts or something. I'm looking forward to learning hundreds of new words for snow. I can already hear Chelone wisecracking about the words she uses for snow.

For the rose growers, my Madame Alfred Carriere has sustained multiple attempts at removal, assaults with shovels, crowbars, and she comes back fresh as ever, so we'll suspend sentencing til after spring. A grower on the Antique Rose Forum grows this monster tree climber as a shrub, cutting off 6-7 feet after every bloom flush, so that's what I intend to try. So now the 5 x 5 square of soil for the fringe tree grows 4 lavendars, two variegated box, the rose, and a chartreuse polygonum/lace vine against the fence. I did try to practice some restraint, really. At least I moved the corsican hellebores.

I'm sending a virtual to herd Deanne back to the idylls in the morning. G'night all.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 11:57PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Denise, here is a fun site >>>

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 8:17AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Denise, love the textures. Here we have a skift of snow, so no fun textures.

When DS was small,(perhaps 5?) DH introduced him to email. DS sent a message to a fortune cookie site and his fortune that day was "BEWARE OF YELLOW SNOW". He was confused until DH asked him how snow might become yellow. He blanched! So "yellow snow" can be introduced to your new snow vocabulary repertoire.

I'm going to leave the contrite husband issue alone....I'm sure he'll forget in a matter of days or hours anyway.

Today I hope to research books for 8 year old Skyler and hope to find some perfect ones for him, starting with The Enormous Egg, thanks to Chelone's Mom. Books for Reed were easy!

Although I am eager to Christmas shop (in my own fashion) I am thankful to not have heard Christmas music yet. A few carols LATER ON will be OK, but it is too soon for me still. The ladies on DD's pregnancy forums are into hysterical shopping for their little ones. There seems to be a NEED, no matter the financial situation, to buy buy buy. It is appalling! One lady discovered that she is $18,000 in debt, needs a new car, but still is buying baby toys. The kid is 4 months old and would be delighted with a wooden spoon for heaven's sake!

Speaking of finances, I am not by any means perfect, but these stories startle me. My brother's young friend , married & mother of his favourite youngster, asked him for $16,000 because her credit card needed paying off! (@26%!) Because he is a friend through thick & thin and is horrified by the debt, he is actually considering helping them out. BUT, first he insisted that NO HELP was coming her way with the deadline she imposed and that she first needed to show him a budget. She yelled and screamed and kicked. Eventually she found out he wouldn't back down. She had never heard of a budget, had no idea what it was and didn't know how to research it, but scribbled down her first attempt for him. He was astonished that many things were missing. Nothing was put aside for the future,(roof, car, summer camp, holidays) for emergencies (medical, vet, etc), and even clothing did not show up. He asked about the clothing. She said she didn't buy clothing every month. He suggested that there were 12 months in a year and that you pick a total amount, divide by 12 and save that amount each month. Well, in the end, she did not have the extra $300 per month she imagined, but overspent by at least $1600 each month. This was a revelation to her. She has delayed her family's island holiday ("We deserve it!")and will be brown bagging meals. All this a small beginning. This notion of deserving things is not restricted to her though, and the credit card fiasco isn't either. Where did things start to go so wrong? She may be frustrated by my brother in a big way, but I personally feel he has helped her with this (and many other things) in a huge way, long term. Sorry for my harangue.

A few rain showers changing to flurries this morning. Snowfall amount 2 cm. Local blowing snow late this morning and this afternoon. Wind west 40 km/h gusting to 60. Temperature falling to minus 5 by evening. I say this is winter! The skies are that dark depressing lead grey.

I'm starving! OK, a bit of an exaggeration.
Katie, how are you?

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 9:00AM
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Hi everyone, I've been trying to catch up and check in here for a couple of days now. I didn't mean to cause anyone concern. Life is just very busy right now and I've been spending less time online. I didn't really intend to let Idylling go though, seems I just got out of the swing of things. I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. Ours was pretty good. My mom was feeling ok but not her usual self. My mom and dad both really enjoyed spending as much time as they could with Bella and thought she was just "it".

I've looked back a bit and enjoyed the photos and am so glad that Katie made it through her surgery ok. Waiting for the next report...

Happy Birthday wishes to Marian, Saucy and Kenzie too.

Love, love, loved the video of Reed. What a cutey and such a happy boy!

I've been doing some Christmas decorating. The decorating is my favorite part of the holidays and I've got the inside mostly done. Nothing outside yet though. Winter struck here just before Thanksgiving and it's been cold, windy and snowing ever since.

We've had a cold going around the family, first Jen, then my BIL, then Randy, Jen's fiance and now Bella as of this morning. So far I've escaped it and I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Bella's not feeling well, she's running a fever, so I need to go rock her and read to her. We've gotten out the Christmas books and she's enjoying those. I just wanted to pop in and touch base with you all.


    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 12:16PM
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Quick bop in from work to say it's great to see Eden!! Glad your mom and dad got to love Bella a lot.

Reed's toes still crack me up. No pic I've seen yet without them being excited. He'll be walking before you know!

Another snow word: Sugar. Also sometimes called "granular" this is a particular type of snow that is more like a ball than a flake and gets messy on the roads really, really fast due to a very high moisture content. Good snow ball/man snow, though.

Opposite is: Powder. The soft, light stuff we all wish would come from the sky every time. Lousy for snow balls but great for skiing.

Read Marie's $$ story and just nodded along. What irks me most about the whole bad financial situation thing is that companies who extol themselves as being "above board" give these people the credit!!!! There's a big thing going on here in CT to bail out people who can't afford their ballooning mortgages. While everyone deserves a chance, what are both sides of the table thinking??

Big Favor Needed from Chelone: Last year you linked or posted great instructions for overwintering Hydrangea macrophylla. I didn't do it, didn't get blooms, but want to redeem myself this year. Help?

Happy day to all -


    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 1:31PM
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Hello Everyone

Eden - great to have you pop in again. I know how busy things can get this time of year so thanks for stopping by. Hope little Bella feels better soon.

Marian - the figures in front of the picture in the Art Gallery mock up were lifted from the net but I see now how much the one on the right looks like our Saucy. Saucy is actually to the far right of the sepia photo, wearing sun-glasses and flipping her blond hair.

Denise - your Verbena Bonariensis has all taken up residence in my garden LOL! Do you need me to send any seed back home? I really love the plant but probably let it volunteer a little too freely. I'm a sucker for purple and its airy texture and give it free reign.

I was going to put a link to the thousands of words in the Inuit language for snow - has anyone seen or read Smila's Sense of Snow? However, on doing a search I've found that this for the most part has been debunked. Oh well.

Today has passed pleasantly so far with a lovely surprise in the mail from my DS and Mum - two pretty bead necklaces from 10,000 Villages. Some nice trans-Atlantic phone calls too. Unfortunately DH had to leave town this AM so it's just the 3 of us tonight. Once homework/practice is done I'm planning on a toasty fire and a glass or so of red wine.


    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 4:06PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

LOL, Mary ! You got me ! I 'did' think the standing back view was Saucy...just because of what you said. ( Sorry Saucy ). I knew which one was her in the framed pic.

My lazer surgery wasn't as pleasant as the one on the right eye. That eye wasn't dilated, but today the nurse REALLY dilated the left one ! Now it hurts, and my face and sinus on that side hurts....darn ! I had to return to the optometrist's office to have the pressure checked...about an hour after the zapping. My next appointment is the 13th.

Mary, (again), How nice to get 2 pretty bead necklaces. I am debating what to spend my BD check from my sister on. I always like to get something that lasts...that won't wear out.

Martie, I am familiar with 'powder' snow, but not 'sugar'. I can't recall what we called the moist type that made good snowmen but stuck to the bottom of skis and sleds ! I sure remember trying to drag the snow-caked sled home from the grocery store with the groceries on it. I don't know why my brother and I, who were the youngest of the 5, were saddled with that job. We had to go over raised railroad tracks with the load ! I hope that didn't contribute to my lifelong ailments. :-(

I guess I need to look at the link Marie posted, of Reed. I never did get past the one of the dog licking his face....:-( I guess I keep thinking of what all else they lick !!!!

Eden, I'm glad all is fairly okay with you. Thanks for the BD wishes. Here's hoping Bella's cold doesn't last long.


    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 5:37PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

(whoosh!!!!!) did anyone else see that week zip by?

Life has been interesting here - DS was less than honest with us when he was home, returned to school and then crashed emotionally the next morning. After several phone calls, DH and I decided to head down there. Thank God my boss had no issues with me taking off on little notice! Anyway, we helped him tackle the issues and straighten out the bumpy road. The kid who saw no alternative to dropping out of school Monday morning has now turned things around and is plowing ahead. It won't be a stellar semester, but it WILL be a semester.

Now I need to empty the dishwasher, conjure dinner and read this idyll! More later,


    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 8:05PM
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Eden, So good to know that you are ok. I understand the absence, but was worried. Poor Bella, I hate it when the little ones are sick. I bet she will want to read all the christmas books everyday for awhile.

Loved Reeds video clip. I can't believe how fast he is growing and accomplishing things. I can see where Indy could be quite handy in the cleanup department. LOL I think it's pretty clever he knows to give kisses.
All the dog surgery pictures have got me jumpy. I'm thinking Rebel is going to be in line for something. He really has trouble getting up and down.
I hope Katie is doing ok.

I moved more rocks to the work area yesterday, but didn't get a lot accomplished. I developed a headache, probably from digging around in all that leaf mold. Today We went in to the city to meet up with a friend from Kansas City. She just lost her husband a week and a half ago and her brother is in the hospital in St. Louis with heart problems and he doesn't have anyone else to be there for him, so she is getting a double whammy. We had a nice visit while waiting for his peocedure. I had not been in that part of the city for a long while and am very thankful to be back home in the country.
I have known these people since grade school and spent many nights back and forth between familys and even though we don't see each other often we still have that closeness that comes from knowing someone well.
I've been typing in the box and have now forgotten what I read above. I think I will post this before I lose it.
My eyes are tired and I think I will go veg in front of the tv for awhile. Norma

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 8:32PM
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I know what I wanted to say. Mary did we miss your birthday? The bead necklaces, just the three of you at home tonight feel like I'm missing something there.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 8:35PM
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The word is procedure in the post above.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 8:38PM
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Wow V. Another storm weathered. I'm glad you could help him get turned around.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 8:44PM
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Just can't quit can I?

Marian I wanted to say I hope the laser treatment was successful. Will you still need to wear glasses? Norma

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 8:52PM
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'bug, wasn't that a Frank Zappa song? I agree, Martie, it's been a bizarre past couple years, with whatever growth in the U.S. economy based on very little other than people buying and selling each other houses. Now we see where that's got us. I blame Greenspan!

Mary, I was thinking of Smila's Sense of Snow when I wrote that. Saw the movie but haven't read the book. I just might come knocking for some V. bonar. in spring if you have any left.

Marian, I'm writing "skift" into my Merriam-Webster's 10th Ed., with your name in parentheses.

Eden, I came down with a sore throat in the middle of the night, no doubt from the sniffling relatives I encountered over the holiday. Wish someone would read to me! Might drag out some audiotapes instead. I hope you stay healthy, with as much on your plate as you've got going.

What a strange workday, even for me. The witness was cranky, overworked, didn't want to take time out of his busy workday to be deposed, protested he knew nothing about the issues anyway, and was nervous and abrupt with me when I arrived at his place of business, which was about the size of a closet, packing boxes everywhere, shelves of merchandise. I told him I'd wait in my car for the atty to arrive and would get out of his hair, since I understand how these things can be upsetting and time consuming. Atty arrives, we finish the whole deal in 20 minutes, I'm packing up to go, and the witness keeps apologizing for his earlier behavior. Would I take a gift? Just to escape, I finally said sure, no need, but that would be lovely.

Get this. He makes wine-related apparel. Can you read the caption? I can see Deanne serving guests in this apron, with straws in the pocket for the after-dinner concert.

As many legs showing is what that kitty has, three. Sweet little tripod cat.

V, my youngest DS would be the one not communicating the fact he's going over Niagara in a teacup, and with my oldest it's usually too much info! Glad to hear things are sorted out for your DS. Norma, sounds like an exhausting day for you, but what a support you are for your friends. G'night all.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 8:57PM
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Norma - no you didn't miss my birthday - there are still 3 hours left. Thank you for picking up on my clues;0)


    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 9:16PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

I'm waiting to hear about Marian's eyes as well. I've known someone who had great success with it!

V, my oh my our kids are a challenge at all ages. It took our son over a decade to get through university. I actually give two different girlfriends credit for their encouragement to his finishing at all. There was a long period where he went missing to everyone and I about died of pain. I quit a job simply to be there when he might possibly contact us. I didn't know if he was dead or alive. Eventually he did contact us, I managed to get insurance to cover microsurgery to the tune of many thousands of dollars which he could not pay for, friends got him back in school with more confidence...his advisor, understanding that he was his own worst enemy with his expectations, dropped certain courses from his record and he was eventually given a fresh start. Such drama everywhere. A hard time for his parents as well needless to say. Keeping that communication open is ever so difficult with a private stubborn independent soul. To this day he does not know that we got him a job working on a nearby farm for many months until he realized he was an academic once more. He loved it, but knew he wouldn't love it forever.

Today's book shopping was fun and a success. Only The Enormous Egg was not available, but I can do that on Amazon for less anyway. I managed to find good books on mazes, drawing, how things are made, a "bathroom" book with interesting one page facts to read, books with true animal tales, a wonderful illustrated poem book, baby books....a funny book for DH, and a pond book for Sarah and her DH. I think I'm DONE. DS brought us a Christmas puzzle to complete everything. :)

I bought myself a 2008 calendar which DH mounted inside my cupboard near the phone tonight. I was needing to schedule things beyond the 2007 one...and that's always dangerous!

The thermostat in our back room seems to have died. Upon inspection, it seems to be an illegal one now, using mercury. It will be tricky to dispose of. In any case, I guess tomorrow DH must try to find and install a new one. We came home to find the temperature almost at 80F with the thermostat supposedly turned OFF. Strange indeed.

So tired. Off to early bedrest tonight.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 9:27PM
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Feeling rather invisible and confused I'm off to bed.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 10:21PM
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Hope you had a great birthday, Mary!

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 10:43PM
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Mary, I couldn't find a suitable picture from the garden but hope this cupcake in its cute teapot wrapper (it reminds me of you!) conveys my best wishes for the happiest of birthdays!


    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 10:51PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Oooops ! Happy Birthday Mary !!!! I didn't catch your clue...dum de dum dum ...

My lazer procedure went fine. It is a normal follow-up to cataract surgery. A film frequently grows over the implant,once it is removed all is fine again.
Lots of people no longer have to wear glasses after their cataracts are removed, but I wasn't one of them. Since I have astigmatism I still have to wear them. I don't mind at all, because I look better with glasses on. They help hide part of my bumpy nose! ( I am totally serious.)
I'm sure my appointment the 13th is to determine if I need new glasses.

Marie, my brother's first son pulled that disappearing act too. I don't think he got very far with schooling. It seems that he is rather a 48 year old bum. Pretty sad. His mother is/was bipolar. She and my DB had two children. Both are 'differant'. I think they are both living in Hawaii now. DB raised those children by himself for several years, before remarrying. Now the step son has become a liability also....moving in with them. Not good at all, since DB had a triple bypass about a year and a half ago.

I wish my son could have succeeded with his second marriage, but at least he does not expect mom and dad to bail him out ! I think he has inherited the independence from his parents.

An even sadder case than my nephew is Nolon's sister's son. He was another derilect, and was found dead in his house a few years ago, probably from drugs.He was in his mid 40s.

I am afraid I know very few families that do not have at least one disfunctional member.

Ahhh me...sorry to be so morose....

Say goodnight, Gracie...


    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 10:51PM
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How great to see Eden checking in ! Arent we just a big pack of mother hens, wringing our hands and worrying about one of the chicks ? Glad you made an appearance at the coop !

bug , that primrose is just beautiful ! Do you know the cultivar ?

and Denise, what a treat it is whenever you post pics of some of the way cool plant combos you have going. Want Madame Alfred in the worst way. I fear I will have to skip a year in rose acquisitions, but if I play my cards right I will have ample room to expand my inventory. I have to get busy digging up those that will be moving with me. Of the 70 plus I have there are only a couple that are small and not yet established. The rest will stay , and so I start over.

Last night I watched Mary Queen of Scotts had not seen that since it came out ..when was it ? Early 80s maybe ? Glenda Jackson absolutely owned every scene she was in. Out of view for so many years , one forgets how powerful an actress she is. I am going to view Women In Love next week.

Im time challenged this evening, so I will bid you all a goodnight. And of course


    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 10:58PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

MeToo, Vita and Minou want to join Mary in the festivities. ie: sleep ;-)

SLEEP? What's that?

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 10:59PM
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My dear IU4 roommate!

I am clueless....even with clues! Norma is Sherlock....

I don't send cards to many....relatives included :)

Happy Birthday Idyll Friend! (pay close attention, that flower is like crinkled origami paper unfolding :)


    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 1:27AM
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Good rose-colored morning! (Red sky in the morning ....) Ugh

Mary: I can say without reservation and somewhat egotistically that you're in good company :-) With Deanne "away" the keeper of the calendar missed. Perhaps we should start a fresh list??????

This is my most prized pic from this year, since the Lavandula angustifolia 'Hidcote' was started from SEED and bloomed the same year!!!!! Happy plant :-) From one England-seed starter to another, Happy Birthday!!


    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 7:18AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Mary - I read those clues last night and wondered.... but it's cold and dark and my mind is working very sluggish these days....

Red sky in the morning here this morning too... and fluries is the word repeated constantly in the 5-day forecast.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 7:51AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)


Happy Birthday Mary! I can't make a proper greeting for you til I get home tonight but didn't want any more time to pass. Somehow we need to get this whole birthday recognition program back on track. When Cynthia was on it we never missed one. In the files section of the yahoo group T set up way back when, there is an excel document that lists all BDs. If anyone wants a copy of that, send me an e-mail... VTSKIERS at

OK, off to deal with inventory and all the related frivolity.


    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 7:56AM
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Happy Birthday Mary! I found this photo by accident when I was googling ...who knows what... a few days ago. It's a tea farm, isn't it gorgeous?! Please have a cup of tea and enjoy the green.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 8:10AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good Grief! miss a few days and I missed a bunch of birthdays. Without further ado....

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 8:44AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Birthdays are the best days here!

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 9:00AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Janie in Ontario had a BD the 20th.
A belated Happy Birthday Janie. I miss you !

Katie (gonegardening) in Virginia is today's Birthday girl.
Happy Birthday Katie ( if you are still 'here').

Sue, long ago I made a list (on cardboard) of all the Idyll members...their locations, their spouses, their children, and their birthdates. I still refer to it occasionally, but apparently not enough. Besides, I don't want to steal the fun from the designated Birthday Reminder.

WOW Cynthia..that pic is beautiful! I'd love to overlook that view.

Marie, Reed gets cuter every day. We have a little fellow in our congragation that hasn't been walking too long, but is extremely active. He is a climber! He is at the stage where no one is a stranger. The other day he clambered up on the place where Nolon always sits ( before Nolon got there)and was busily examining the song books and bibles. I kept telling him "That's a no no". He'd calmly put what he had down, and head for another one. He got farther and farther away from me, with no indication that he was offended by my admonitions, but finally went back to his greatgrandmother. ( She lets him handle whatever he wants too ! ) She keeps him while his mom is at work, but last sunday it was because she has a brand new baby daughter! Her name is Lily Ann...a good old fashioned name. The brother is David.

LOL, Denise. That's funny about your notation in your dictionary. I have a new Reader's Digest Oxford Complete Wordfinder. It is NOT complete. It does not have the word 'skift' in it. I haven't checked all my old dictionaries.

Kathy , what a beautiful display. I espacially love all the chartreuse leaves of pelargoniums and Solanum intermingled with the darker leaves and lovely flowers.

No 'skift of snow' here but I guess you could call it a 'skift of rain' that we are getting ( although I never heard it used that way).


    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 9:18AM
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Good Morning. It's always so nice to see all of the beautiful Idyll birthday cards. Our snow words for tomorrow are sleet- a mix of snow and rain, and slush- what sleet turns into when it accumulates on the ground. We're also forecast to get freezing rain. Yuck!

Bella's feeling a little better today. No exaggeration that she must have sneezed at least 100 times yesterday. So far 3 sneezes today...

Marian, I googled skift and from what I gathered it seems to be a regional word used mainly in the Ozarks or rural parts of the midwest?

Not much else to contribute but I'm trying to get back in the swing of things here on Idylls. Have a good day everyone.


    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 10:54AM
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Happy Birthday Mary!

Mary this garden area makes me think of England and you. I hope your day was special.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 11:55AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

My parents were from the mid-west,(Nebraska and Illinois), so perhaps that is how the word arrived in my remote part of central Idaho. There were no Ozarkians there, that I knew of.
So glad that Bella is better.

Deanne, I love your bird pics. Thanks!

I have stripped and remade 3 beds so far today. Have a lot more things to get done before company. I got almost all the laundry done yesterday, but now have another load ( of bedding).

I have a large package of jumbo sirloin chops that I am going to make a barbeque casserole with. Hoping the girls will like it. I will also cook up a pot of chicken and noodles. They really went for that the last time here.
I guess I will make more pumpkin pies for dessert, and a cake.
If all else fails, I have a large pizza that I can throw into the oven.:-)


    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 12:04PM
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Wow, what a day yesterday was here at the office. We had a fiber cut by the crew working on the new highway, which put one of our towns out of cable and internet. Fortunately we do have a voice mail system that gives them a message as to whats going on, but many did press 5 to talk to us. TV seems to be a lifeline for many. We went directly from work to a visitation for a 58 year old relative who died of breast cancer after a 7 year struggle. We did a little Christmas shopping on the way back so I didnt get home until 10:30, whew, what a day.

Deanne, I knew you were out with the birds I love the fabulous cards.

Eden, great to have you back. I hope little Bella feels better.

I must get back to work.

Have a great Friday.


    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 12:27PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

I'm moving to Cynthia's tea farm! Here's what it's like here today. THESE ARE IN COLOUR!

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 1:23PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

A little birdie told me I should get my butt over here and say "hello". Ive wanted to do that for some time, but it just seemed too overwhelming. I tried to go back and catch up on the Idylls since the last time I was there, but that was in the first week of July! There is no way I could ever catch up... I have missed sooo much (the good things - so many birthdays and so many beautiful birthday cards) and the bad things...

The words are way too late. Still, I cant just let it pass like it doesnt matters to me and I feel badly for not being there. As I say the words are way too late, but they are genuine. V I was *so* sorry to hear about your brother...I cant even imagine how you get through it, but I know youre brother would be very happy to know that his wife and kids were there with you on Thanksgiving. Im so sorry for you & your familys loss. was with sadness that I read of your mothers passing. She was *some* kind of woman and you made her very proud...Im *sure* about that. Would I, could I ever be as good a daughter as you have been to your mom...I will be at peace. What I admire most about you (well maybe not most, there is so much to admire) but anyway, what I admire most is that you were always able to hold on to your mom in your heart, always seeing her as a person not a senile old lady....always *recalling* that she was once a young vibrant woman, and always treating her with dignity. You were *there* for her and gave so much (sometimes to your detriment). You have always been and will always be my roll model when it comes to dealing with elderly parents. Mom is in a bad way now, but Im trying to be there for her and trying to remember she *too* was a young, vibrant woman, who deserves to be treated with dignity. I think of you on the most trying days and re-read this poem too, which I keep folded in my wallet....

An Old Lady's Poem

What do you see, nurses;
What do you see?
What are you thinking
When you're looking at me?

A crabby old woman,
not very wise,
Uncertain of habit,
with faraway eyes?

Who dribbles her food
and makes no reply
When you say in a loud voice,
"I do wish you'd try!"

Who seems not to notice
the things that you do,
And forever is losing a
stocking or shoe...

Who, resisting or not,
lets you do as you will,
With bathing and
feeding, the long day to fill...

Is that what you're thinking?
Is that what you see?
Then open your eyes, nurse:
you're not looking at me.
I'll tell you who I am
as I sit here so still,
As I do at your bidding,
as I eat at your will.

I'm a small child of ten...
with a father and mother,
Brothers and sisters,
who love one another.

A young girl of sixteen,
with wings on her feet,
Dreaming that soon now
a lover she'll meet.

A bride soon at twenty...
my heart gives a leap,
Remembering the vows
that I promised to keep.

At twenty-five now,
I have young of my own,
Who need me to guide,
and a secure happy home.

A woman of thirty,
my young now grown fast,
Bound to each other with
ties that should last.

At forty, my young sons
have grown and are gone,
But my husband's beside me
to see I don't mourn.

At fifty once more,
babies play round my knee,
Again we know children,
my loved one and me.

Dark days are upon me,
my husband is dead;
I look at the future,
I shudder with dread.

For my young are all rearing
young of their own,
And I think of the years
and the love that I've known.
I'm now an old woman...
and nature is cruel;
'Tis jest to make old age
look like a fool.

The body, it crumbles,
grace and vigor depart,
There is now a stone
where I once had a heart.

But inside this old carcass
a young girl still dwells,
And now and again
my battered heart swells.

I remember the joys,
I remember the pain,
And I'm loving and living
life over again.

I think of the years...
all too few, gone too fast,
And accept the stark fact
that nothing can last.

So open your eyes,
nurses, open and see,
Not a crabby old woman;
look closer...see ME!!

Also Eden, I just wanted to tell you how my heart goes out to you and mom...well your whole family, of course. I know these arent easy times for any of you. I hold good thoughts and am sending my positive vibes that your mom will have many *good* days yet to come. I admire her and her strength and will. In March it will be *2 years* since my sis was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. I feel so lucky and grateful to have had this time...its truly been a blessing. And even though my sis and I have always been close, we are closer now than ever. P.S. I hope Bella the Ball is feeling more like the princess she is! :-)

Was also sorry to hear about Katies challenges, but happy to hear that she made it through the surgery. Keeping positive thoughts and wishes that Katie has lots of "roo" days!

And on a happy note....Happy Birthday Marian! :-) Reading the joy in your voice brought a smile to my face....Im *so* glad you had such a nice Thanksgiving.

Hey! Whaddaya mean I *stole* that picture?! Well, it's one of my favorite birdie pics (along of course, with *all* of Deanne's stunning pics) that I just had to post it. Besides, every time I look at it I am reminded of you! :-)

Happy Birthday Mary! Im sorry I missed your day....hope it was Supercalifragilisticexpealidocious!!! I know...Im a cornball...sorry! :-)

P.S. A Happy Birthday to Saucy too! There are so many birthdays I missed (including my own...LOL) that theres no way I could post all the cards...but I *do* wish all whos birthday I missed...a very belated, but "Happy Birthday!" In any case, I sure have enjoyed all the birthdays cards for everyone...just beautiful! Though Ive only been scanning so far, I must say there are always such beautiful posts here. Deanne, you are *amazing* as always and in all ways! I was also quite struck by Denisezs sons image of the mantel and urns...stirs up a romantic, yet restful feeling...beautiful! Well, as I say, all the pics here are wonderful!

Tweet, Tweet! :-) Youre right Bug....Idyll birthdays are the best! :-) BTW, thanks for the line and thanks for sharing all the great pics of Reed! Dont know if this is the proper word to use for a boy (and he *is* all boy)...but I have often been struck by what a *beautiful* baby he is....such a wonderful complexion and a megawatt smile....No wonder youre a besotted grandma! :-) Oh and a big congratulations to Lynn and family! Shes a lovely lady and I was just tickled to see her smiling "proud gramma" face! :-)

Okay, a little about me...son is happily married! :-) Heres a couple of my favorite pics...

I *love* this picture of the "so in love" couple! :-)

And heres me sharing a special moment with my this picture too! :-)

See Michelle, I told you I was quite taken and inspired by your beautiful dress! :-)

Lets see what else has been happening....tons...but wont get to it all today.

Well, I am sporting two purple knees, a purple elbow and forearm and two purple boobs! No, I havent gotten into body painting...LOL! A couple of days ago Scout was laying in the middle of the darkened hall and I didnt see him....I did a spectacular vault...flying into the air. Unfortunately my landing was less than stellar and I did a "belly flop" onto the hard wooden floor with the bottle of water I was carrying, dumped unceremoniously all over the floor and on me. Luckily Scout seemed to know the landing would not be good and he quickly made a bee line out of harms way. If I had landed on him...he would have been squashed like a bug.

Last week-end Paul treated me to the theatre...I was very pumped because we havent been to a play in such a long time. The name of the play was "What the Butler Saw".....wouldnt you think it would be a mystery? Well, I sure did. Paul told me it was a comedy/mystery, at least that was what he had gathered. Paul & I were commenting as we were being seated what luck to have "front row seats!" Well, imagine my shock and surprise when a girl appeared on stage in the first act...*nude*. Apparently "the Butler" saw plenty, and many times too! Okay, the girl was covered up by her own arms and legs...but my Gosh! I had no idea! And it only got worse....there were men on stage in their under drawers! One seemed to be obscenely gifted and I cant say if that was a prop or not as I kept my eyes diverted... Wouldnt you know the *one time* we get lucky enough to have front and center seats! Ive never thought of myself as a prude, but really, the only other man (up to this point) Ive ever seen in his drawers so "up close and personal" was my husband! I was *so* uncomfortable. If I was there alone I would have walked out, but Paul took us to the play as a treat for me and I didnt want to insult him or hurt his feelings and *he* wasnt getting up. There was silence as we left the theatre all the way until we got into the car. Then neither of us could hold it in anymore....we both burst out in hysterical laughter....were so mature and wordly! :-) Oh well, at least it was a night out and we certainly did get a good laugh out of it! :-)

Okay, I wasnt going to share this, but I wanted to show you something else Ive been up to. One of the most important love affairs of my life seems to be coming near an end. My dear, sweet Scout isnt doing too well. I wanted to do something always have him with me. I decided to do a collage and didnt want to wait until later....I didnt think I could do it later. Im just working on it. It will be about 3 by 4 feet when Im finished and I will hang it in the hallway. Anyway, here is what I have so far... Ive never done much drawing in my life and I dont know how I did a drawing of him so well (divine intervention I think) but Im very happy to have it.

Anyway, I never mean to make my posts so long, so I think Ill cut out right now. Just wanted to say "Hi" to everyone. I cant promise I will post as regularly as I would like, but I can promise the next time will be shorter and sooner than the this time.

TTYL! Eileen

P.S. I have spent some time over at YouTube. I love that place...I find videos all the time that I never imagined I could find. Late at night when I cant sleep I go over there and watch some Groucho Marx...he never fails to make me laugh...I think Chelone enjoys him too? In any case I've added a link to one of my faves Lydia the Tattooed Lady:

Oh, and heres a couple more...I've never been able to figure out how to add more than one link, so you'll have to copy and paste these two....

This one is for Sue & Chelone and all you other "air release" admirers:

And heres one in honor of the visitor Im expecting tomorrow:

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 5:34PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Eileen !!!! How great to 'see' you, not only in words, but even a pic! I am so happy about your son's wedding, and wish them a good long happy marriage.
It's funny, but I always scroll to the bottom of the page when I open the Idyll threads, and as I started working my way back up I thought " This HAS to be Eileen!"
Hey ! You did not steal that bluebird picture. You are most welcome to it. I am glad I took it when I did, as that twig is no longer there. I have no good perch so visible from the house anymore.
Do come back for good, and keep us all cheered up. :-)

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 5:58PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Thanks Ei! We needed you back!
What a handsome son and beautiful Mom!

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 7:08PM
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Just very quickly a warm thank you for all my beautiful cards. Every one of them means the world to me. And Ei - having you back again makes them even more special. I'll be back later to enjoy your post afater the evenings activities are over. You've been greatly missed but how wonderful to hear from you again.


    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 7:13PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

As promised...

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 8:55PM
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    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 9:09PM
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    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 9:10PM
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    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 9:11PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Tomorrow is red ribbon day. I'll be wearing mine. Many of us know one of the millions affected in some way by AIDS. My cousin was one.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 9:15PM
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How good to see a post from you Ei. I'm sorry to hear Scout isn't doing well. Thats a tough one.

Love the wedding photos. I can see how happy they are.

Sorry to hear your mom is having such a rough time. I enjoyed the poem though.

I hope you will continue to pop in. No need to catch up with us all.

I have been absolutly lazy today. Nothing to report here.

Bug, you can keep the snow. Brrrr... Nice pics though. I've not seen that gate before. I like it.
I should be hoping for some snow here to help out our moisture shortage, but I would rather have rain. No ice please. Ack , have to be careful what I wish for.
What a tough time it must have been when your son went missing. Thank goodness he is doing well now.

Michelle, DH is addicted to that darn tv. Drives me nuts.

Bella, drink lots of fluids and be well.

Deanne is that a baby bird in Marians card? I'm asking because of the fuzzy head.

I hope everyone had a more productive day than I did.
I better get an early start tomorrow. LOL Norma

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 9:45PM
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Came home late today, having been in Healdsburg for My Last Ever Inventory (and what a great feeling that is I can tell you). One of my inventory control colleagues said to me as I was leaving tonight that he had some of my clipboards and would return them to me next week. I told him Honey, those are *your* clipboards now! And of couse we had a bit of a debacle (I would have to go out in flames of course) with IT issues. Any of you who have worked in retail, or had a service (i.e. RGIS) come in to do your counts could probably relate to what we went through today-a file mix up that put the counts for one location into another locations inventory. It was pretty ugly, but all is well now. And my feet are killing me ! I dont usually have problems with being on my feet all day , but the floors in this particular facility are concrete . So, as soon as I got home I poured a glass of wine , put on my fuzzy slippers and sat down at the computer and what a treat ! All the great B-day cards and a post from Eileen ! Love the Mary Poppins action there Ei

Marian, Im afraid I cant take credit for that lovely container arrangement in Marys card..I took that pic in May at Fergusons Fragrant Nursery near St Paul Oregon. If you ever get a wild hair and decide to visit your bro in Albany, this nursery is well worth a trip ! I took numerous pictures of their container garden area. They have a nice business potting up theses fabu-fabu containers and selling them to municipalities and the like.

bug, I loved your snow photos. Very elegant looking. I can only imagine how you were dressed to take these pics ( wimpy California perspective ) . My best friend George died of AIDS about 15 years ago. I still think of him almost every day-our childhoods were very entwined.

Norma, my late DH was addicted to TV too. We picked out our last two houses so that I would have a place to go to get away from it , lol. Now it is on only for baseball games, and I have Netflix so when it isnt baseball season I watch 1 or two movies a week.

Cynthia, that tea-farm is just spectacular-is it in Asia ? Hope Katies doin ok ?

Eileen, I call that dress color lobelia blue, and I remember the pic of Michelle in hers. I have a dress this color with black polka dots. I love polka dots ! Your story of the risqué theater experience made me chuckle. I remember how anxious some of my friends and I were when we went to see Hair in the late 60s knowing that there was a brief nude scene. We survived ! Especially since it lasted all of about 5 seconds.
Your Scout collage is lovely-did you really draw that pic ? I think its great !

Wow Martie, I have never tried to grow lavender from seed. You are justifiably proud. What kind of a winter regimen do you have with lavs ? Do you have to put a pile of mulch around them or what ?

OK, time to sign off and go read the papernite all

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 10:54PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Thanks Marian for the good wishes for Paul & Christy! They really are well-matched and share so many of the same interests. They just got a new puppy and shes adorable....a Keeshond? Not sure of the spelling. Anyway, she is just one big ball of soft fluff, who likes to cuddle! :-) Scouts not all that interested in her and not too happy to see her visiting either. His age and arthritis make him intolerant of rambunctious puppies these days. Funny story...a neighbor came by to show me her two young dogs...Lhaso? (I think). Well they were leashed, but they wanted to play with Scout so bad, they kept tugging on the leash to try to get to him. I told Nancy that Scout doesnt like being jumped on, so she made sure the puppies couldnt reach him. Anyway, were all sitting in the livingroom and the puppies would lunge to get a Scout and every time they did hed curl his lip in the most hysterical way, as if to say "Go away kid, you bother me". I am certain he wouldnt bite (he has never done so in all his life, even times when I would have understood if he did). Anyway, Scout decided he had enough of these little guys and walked about 10 feet from us and turned his back on us....too hilarious. He would not turn around and look at me again until the puppies left...LOL! Sorry you dont have any good "perching branches" nearby. Did you see any bluebirds this year? My mom & dad had them as visitors all the time in Tennessee, but I have never seen them here. Exciting summer though, as I saw more than a few hummingbirds in my garden this year. They are amazing little balls of energy!

LOL Kathy...well I wouldnt have been so uncomfortable if it had been a few minutes or if I were further back at the theatre. There were men in their underwear for nearly the whole 2 hour play and I was so close, I could have literally reached out and touched them....too close for my comfort...LOL! Yes, long story, but I never think of Mary Poppins that I dont think of our dear Mary. Yes, I find it hard to believe too LOL...but I really *did* draw that pics...see my initials at the bottom? :-)

More gorgeous pics for the birthday girls...I love it.

Norma...I agree your pond is very special...I have always admired the way you have it looks so natural, like it had no human intervention. I try to strive for that, but mostly fail. When things "look natural" here its because I havent got out to weed...LOL!

Speaking of things looking natural...Hi Sue! Lovely pic. Youre landscape & gardens are always have the best bones (the garden ones I mean though Im sure your own bones are just fine too....LOL!) Speaking of which I meant to tell you...I took your advice to heart and *finally* dug out that last little strip of lawn in the front yard dry river bed. You were so already looks so much better. In the spring Ill think about what to plant. Im thinking some Japanese Iris and maybe some of Bug's Primula.

Bug, what was that primula that you had that you said spread so nicely? Thanks too for the reminder. I just read some tragic statistics after seeing your post:

"Poverty is both a cause and consequence of HIV/AIDS. The impact of the disease is disproportionately high in the developing world, which is home to more than 95 percent of the estimated 40 million people infected with HIV/AIDS -
There are over 28 million people in Africa are suffering from AIDS." So sorry to hear that it touched your family in such a personal way. I sure hope that a cure will come soon! onto some ha-ha stuff....thought you guys would enjoy the link below. Maybe you have to have been raised Catholic to truly appreciate the humor...but I thought this was hilarious!

Have a great day all! Eileen

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 9:22AM
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Weekend greetings, and hello Ei! What nice posts to wake up to. I remember as a kid inventing sins for confession. I knew it was a sin to think I didn't have ANY sins, lol, so I'd invent a few venial sins for the padre then be on my way. A lie to declare for the next confession, at least. What a tortuous thing a Catholic childhood can be. Some of the idylls reminisced a few months back over the fishnet-stocking rebellion phase with the Catholic uniform.

Just a quick hello, leaving with some color to counterbalance the somber but beautiful winter tracery of 'bug's lovely photos. DS was doing pro bono photography work (sigh) for the Carpenter Center in Orange County, an Indian dance troupe. If there's any undeclared birthdays out there, this one's for you! There's some lobelia/gentian blue, saffron, fuchsia...still think puppets are a little creepy, tho...

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 10:34AM
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TGIS!!!!! The first week back to work after a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday was exhausting. I know for next year to be prepared for the onslaught :-)

So good to see you, Ei!! The dress is stunning, and so is the couple :-)

Lavs are notoriously easy to start from seed, Kathy. You might never be sure exactly what will come up since they cross easily, too, but they are fun. I don't do anything special for winter except site the tenderer-in-Z6 ones (L. x intermedia's in particular) in protected spots. Lavs hate wet feet, so I actually pull mulch away so that they don't get iced in. With hoped for luck, I'll be trialing a few next summer and am looking forward to getting back into that swing.

Also, Kathy, sorry to hear of your inventory trials. I can almost see you thumbing your nose at the whole enchilada from here :-)

Sue: What is the plant to the far right in your pic with the blueish opposite foliage?

Saw your winter pics and gasped at the last one, Marie. Card material there, without a doubt.

I've decided to take a huge plunge and invest in an already done 36" ivy cone-shaped topiary for the Holidays. Many failed attempts at starting (actually maintaining ;-)) my own still makes me hesitate to spend three figures on a house plant, but when a garden center person calls and says "you've gotta have one of these" one responds, right?? LOL

Flurries here this morning. Just a fairy dusting but fun to wake up to!

Kids enroute from the cul-de-sac for annual gingerbread man day. Yes, even the three 12- year-olds. Glad they feel "safe" here to still be kids.


    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 10:35AM
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I'm with Deanne! ya miss a coupladaze and you're running to catch the bus... with all the Idyllers making faces at you from the rear windows. Not really...

I just picked up the "bread crumb trail", Miss Mary. I SUPPOSE I'll have to flounder through the largely unorganized picture files to find something to mollify you... ;) Happy birthday!

Marian, good to know the surgery went well, in spite of the initial discomfort. Maybe we should start calling you "Hawkeye"? Note to self: find out what "skift" means... have no clue (could have "blown" past it during my semi-frantic "turbo skim", though).

V., isn't it amazing what level heads and a different perspective can do to assist someone who is feeling overwhelmed? Proof positive that parenting is a never ending process, it simply morphs as the years pass. Do you know I STILL haven't found that silly Ginkgo fruit that rolled under the passenger seat of my car?! spring's acomin' (so they say) and I wonder how it will smell then?

Denise, you set the "way back machine" and I'll be there... "watch out where the huskies go, and don't you eat that yellow snow...". LOL! I haven't really thought about the estimable Mr. Zappa for several years now. But anyone who flouts "political correctness" is generally someone I like because they "lock the radar on" the very essence of parody. Pass the "zircon encrusted tweezers", willya? :) I am reminded of the day, a year/two ago, that I returned home to find the helpmeet's name carefully written in the fresh snowbank next to the door... , that's my boy! (Is that Ein in the picture? he's pretty cute... for a dog). Ahh, there is also, "coHn snow", the result of spring conditions... warming during the extended daylight hours and then refreezing to leave big, crumbly crystals the next morning. I can't recall what sort of wax the "skinny ski" crowd recommends for it... but used to hear it during the ski report when I was a 'teen in the wilds of Cow Hampshire. ;)

So nice to hear from Eden! Didn't Kathy just peg it perfectly? we certainly ARE a flock of biddies. We scratch around the dooryaHd, clucking about "nothing", when in actuality we cluck about very important things, but the importance of it is only revealed much later. And we worry when one of the flock "goes missing". Having been AWOL before, myself, I understand. I'm sorry Bellatheball has been under the weather; but I'm sure snuggling and stories with you was the best "cherry elixir" going! (it was when Mum administered it to me). I'm also sorry your Mom is not quite herself. I'm sure you're worried and please know I understand and think of you often. It's nice to hear your voice again.

Ei., I brushed a few tears away reading what you wrote to me. I wish there was something I could say to you to make what you're watching easier. All I can say is that I understand how hard it is, evaporation takes a fair piece of time. "Ya plays tha hand what's dealt ya", kid; and there is no way of knowing what the cards will be. You do the best you're able to get "things in order" and keep your life as "normal" as it can be for as long as you're able. Some days you do a GREAT JOB, other days you lose your temper, you yell, and you say things you wish you hadn't. And then you collect yourself, apologize, and TRY HARDER. I suppose it's the way you dealt with your own kids... but I wouldn't know. And when it's all finished you sit numbly and wonder if it really happened, at all. You replay all the bad days with tears, regret, and doubt. And then you collect yourself, remind yourself that you are "only human, afterall" and you forgive yourself for those resentful "bad days". Because you CAN'T change what's already passed, and if you wallow in it you will soon forget the FUN and lose the remaining half of shared memories that only the two of you made together. But 'tain't easy. Here's something to consider: when I started caring for Mum here there was very little mention of caring for a failing relative at home. Now, it seems, there is a news story about it every other day... interesting how times change so quickly, huh? Try to stay out of Scout's way, willya?

Martie, I haven't checked out the Village, yet. How are you sharing it with Kyle this year? I love the kids coming over, too. Esp. the 12 year olds. I feel very strongly that kids aren't allowed to be kids nearly long enough. Mum always said that you have to work harder to draw out the "kid" in the pre and barely teen years. She always did it with fun "projects" like papier mache, baking, planting seeds, etc.. And we read to each other until I into high school, alternating chapters. Makes me smile.

Kathy... more info. on Mary, Queen of Scots, please! from "Elizabeth R" or a different movie? You KNEW I'd hone in on that, didn't you? Congrats on the final inventory, it's a milestone.

'bug, your "color" photos are wonderful. I suspect the landscape will have a similar pall over it in a few days' time. I'm not ready, but what does that matter? You might try a website called, "Alibris" for the out of print books. I've found some long-lost and oft missed friends there. Very useful and affordable! check it out.

As for finances... a pet peeve of mine, too; though my neo-Victorian propensities and Puritan roots should give you some indication on which side of the fence I sit! It comes down to two things, "need" and "want"; it's really that simple. You take care of "need" first and foremost and then indulge "want". I love Aesop, think of the fable of the "Grasshopper and the Ant" whenever I hear the stories of woe from people who want it all now... (hey 'bug, how about a nice book of the fables for Skyler?!). There is nothing wrong with "want", but there is everything wrong with indulging it to the exclusion of "need". Lest I sound too pedantic and harsh, I DO understand how easy it can be to find yourself "behind the 8 ball"! an expensive car repair, medical emergency... . But carrying a balance on a credit card because you indulge "want" too much is fool's folly; "livin' large" by borrowing against next week's pay is the shortcut to ruin. JMO. (Mum and DAD are smiling and applauding right now).

We were out on ladders on the south side of the house this morning. ;) Taking down the awnings, lol. We've been so busy we have put it off endlessly. The impending storm was the impetus to get it done. I'm thinking Santa might just deliver a second extension ladder for Christmas (along with boxer briefs, wool socks, and warm winter clothing. Speaking of winter clothing: I bought my first pair of Merrell "Jungle Mocs" the other day! I LOVE THEM. My boss swears by them, the helpmeet loves his and I've held off for 3 yrs. now. What a fool was I! :)

I am thinking of Katie-kins and Cynthia... and want to say hi to Norma (much overlooked, for which I apologize).

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 12:14PM
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Greetings from the house where green icing on the ceiling is not only accepted but somewhat encouraged.

We had a blast.

The Village post came up as a surprise to me, and I feel badly that I've not yet answered the kind person's questions. It is from last year. Since no one else touches the village, it'll be interesting to see the combo of the Village and jet lag.

Nice to Idyll the day by ....


    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 12:58PM
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Ahh, Martie... I realized that when I pulled up the thread. :(

How about you share a brief history with us, so when we go back and look again we'll understand more...

I'm procrastinating, I have greens to "condition" before I can begin the pediments. Not a bad task, but one that rates slightly below seeing if any one of the "brood" has checked in and reported any "news"...

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 1:58PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Snow here today. I bagged my shopping trip once I got a look at the bad drivers on the roads.

I spent ALL DAY yesterday in the city with friends. The excuse was a seminar that one friend organized and another spoke at. Although the seminar ended shortly after noon, we didn't catch the train home until 8:30 pm. Wonder why I'm tired today???

I'm delinquent in birthday wishes, but I'm going to beg another 48 hours grace and then I will catch up. Besides, my typing is incredibly bad right now!

Time to put this idyll to bed. Glad to hear from Ei and Eden.

Now how about Honey?


    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 3:51PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Checking in now....

Just back from a show. I know nothing about showing dogs, so this was a hoot. Hair driers, snippers and combs furiously being applied to pooches of all kinds. Couldn't even identify the breeds. One was a Mudi- I'd never heard of it, and it was really unusual with a very fox like head, curly coat and wound up tail! Here are the Bouviers.

Look who caught my eye! This is 4 month old Missy. Her Mom is the sister of Lizzie, the mother of our future pup. The Dad is Keiji, the same as ours! So this sweetheart is very like what we hope for on Dec22nd! We've asked for leaving the ears natural though. Needless to say I so wanted to bring her right home and so did DH!


Thanks for sharing the Orange County Dance troupe! I love the colour! An aunt of mine (Hungarian) was a great puppeteer and even wrote a bit about the art. A gardening friend (also in our book club) is also a puppeteer. Like clowns, don't always expect sweet & comfortable characters!
Later my friends,

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 4:06PM
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All I can clearly see is YOU, g-damnit, 'bug!

I see clipped ears and a lot of "black".

Conisder me unimpressed, though no less THRILLED that YOUR'RE thrilled about this puppy to come!

I'm always going to be the annoying advocate for, "the pound". But you already knew that... didn't you? ;)

I fear old Flo. is not long for this world. Very thin, drinking a lot, frequent "box" trips. I see the signs and know that the end is near. I hope she succumbs in her sleep, but worry that I will have to put my foot down and require that she be euthanized. Send your good wishes that she dies in her sleep, WILLYA?

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 4:22PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

I will indeed!!!! D**N IT! Why do they have to go?

Yes Chelone, natural ears for my pet! And yes, I agree about the pound in theory...except that DD was mauled by her pound animal - and I'm in love with the breed. If I were even a decade younger I'd consider a rescue Bouvier, but correcting another owner's failings is very hard work.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 4:58PM
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