Friday, July 30, 2010

Fertilizer Friday - 30 July 2010

AARG! Thank goodness it's Friday.
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This little flower is wilting! Too much moving of furniture and painting walls. And you think it's hard to unload all those dishes! Whoh! Try to figure out how to put them all back in a new place! Oy yey!
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TGIF.
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This Fertilizer Friday is brought to you once again by the fabulous Tootsie at Tootsie Time. So come; let's walk through my garden on this grey morning.
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The lilies and Potentilla are just about over; and something is eating the centre of my Shasta Daisies as they're all brown. I suspect the earwigs are responsible for a lot of damage in the garden. At least, I hate the little blighters, that's my theory on the problem, and I'm sticking to it!
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The Coneflower is beautiful. It's such a jolly little bunch!
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To the right of the Coneflowers we have my Mother's Day gift - Turtlehead - getting ready to flower. (Very exciting for me!) And then we have this one little sprig of Delphenium ('cause I kept accidentally pulling out the other 3 when I weeded). It's so delicate that it's hard to get a picture of it because the slightest breeze sets it to dancing..
This is it's first summer in my garden, and I'm extremely happy with my Bee Balm. I love the color, and boy! It's a lovely, long bloomer! Just showing signs of aging now!.
The False Sunflower has not been as brilliant this summer as the 2 previous. Again, the centres seem to be dying quickly. (Or perhaps my memory is bad!) I still like it though..
Although the white Astilbe is now faded, the pink is looking marvelous. And in front of this bush, the Liatris is ready to burst open!.
Here we have a pretty low-lying white Campanula. I'm very fond of this one as well..
And lastly, I believe this is Beauty Bush (but please correct me if I'm wrong). This is again it's first summer blooming in my garden..
As an avid novice gardener, I've mostly bought and planted according to my heart with not an awful lot of research. Consequently, over the season, I begin to see what grows well here and not so well there, what's not planted to it's best advantage, what's getting crowded out or hidden behind something that's taller, etc. And I find myself constantly making mental notes and planning what to move and where it will go this fall. Don't you do the same thing?
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But for today, I'm so happy that's still 2 months away! Half a day's work today!!! And the weather is supposed to improve dramatically. So, that sounds like a "Gin 'n Tonic Hammock Day" to me!
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Happy weekend, my friends. Don't forget to check out Tootsie and her garden followers.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Home 'n' Self Improvement?

My brother and sister-in-law are moving back to Newfoundland in August. And as any good relative would do, I helped them a little with moving. Well actually, they have movers coming tomorrow and Friday. But I did what I could.
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I bought the small sideboard!
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Besides the buffet that I have, I've been using small tables and cabinets to hold my extra dishes and glassware. This piece will will take up less space, look much more attractive, and there'll be less dusting for me to do because everything will be behind doors and drawers.
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Before it arrived, I had some heavy duty rearranging to do. And then I noticed the holes and marks on the walls. So, I repainted -- same color just fresh and clean.
Surfaces everywhere are filled with my bits and bobs.
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The new piece is not fancy. It's got dings and chips and needs some love. (Somewhat like me!) So, I sanded the top & put on a coat of stain; then I gave the remainder a good cleaning. (I sometimes do that to myself on a Saturday night; but I still ain't got no lovin'!!)The knobs are removed (the sideboard's knobs, not mine); with any luck, they'll be brass and will clean up nicely (no comment here!). I'll put a couple of coats of varathane on the top; and I'm going to look for some nice paper to line the cupboards and drawers with. Then I'll fill 'er with my treasures, dress her up and show her off to you all.
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I hope she'll look as pretty as her sister does.
(I always wanted to be as pretty as my sister too!)
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When I bought this one, she was awfully sad looking. All it took was a new shelf, fixing the bottom drawer, and all over sanding and varathaning for her to look a hundred times better.
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Okay! So maybe I could use a new shelf, my bottom drawer fixed and the all over!
THEN perhaps I would find acceptance and love like this furniture did, huh?
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Well, I'm not so sure about that.
And I don't think I could run down to my local Home Hardware for the supplies; and I think I'd have to spend more than 20 bucks on it.
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So ................... NAW!!
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This model may be dinged and chipped, but character has to count for something, right!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Broken Dreams


In mid June, I entered and won a giveway hosted
by Barbara at if i didn't have a sense of humor. She has a hilarious blog - one of my favorites - where she takes old magazine advertisements and put a modern spin on them. Check her out; you won't be disappointed.

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I was pretty happy about winning. You see, I have a yellow kitchen full of yellow dishes, fry pans, kettles towels, etc. And THIS was the giveaway that I won ..
... three beautiful yellow planters.

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Alas, when they arrived on Friday, there were more than 3 items in the package.








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I think the smallest planter is the only one that I can salvage. If you look closely at the left corner, you can see where it's broken; but I can glue the pieces back into place. And I'm happy that I can do that.
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Barbara also added a couple of surprise items that arrived in one piece.

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But I've since broken them!!!

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And now ...
some of the pieces are missing so they cannot be put back together!
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And they were in my favorite color too ........................
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CHOCOLATE!..
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(You know; I think some things were meant to be broken!)
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Thank you Barbara. I shall enjoy my gifts!


Saturday, July 24, 2010

Saturday


Let's walk downtown this morning. The sun is out but it's not overly hot. It's a perfect day for a stroll.
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First stop - the library. I just finished reading "The Pillars of the Earth", and I'd like to better understand the descriptions of the medieval building process. (Plus I want a movie for tonight.)

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Oh look! Here's the new fountain in the river. Pretty, isn't it!
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They're still working on the gazebo and park. I wonder when the work will be finished?







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A stop at the Farmer's Market for fresh green beans and baby summer squash, and a basket of red, juicy raspberries!







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And let's not forget a loaf of whole grain bread (and something to add to my brunch).
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Up the hill we go, back home. It's almost noon, and I'm pretty hungry. But in just a few short minutes, lunch is ready.

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Now, after weeks of work, let's get started on the perfect Saturday!

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Happy weekend my friends!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Fertilizer Friday - Caring for the Poor & Needy


I'm joining Tootsie Time for Fertilizer Friday. Be sure to go see her and the other participants' lovely gardens and blooms.


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This is the time of year when the plant centres at the the big box stores begin marking down their prices. I went to my local Atlantic Superstore for bananas & lettuce; and I just happened to notice things were looking pretty sad on their plant shelves. Most plants didn't have markers to identify them and they were all brown and pretty dried out.
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But we know how resilient plants are. And at 60% off!!! How can a gardener turn her back on sad, tired little neglected baby plants when she knows that they just need to be planted in some nice loamie soil and given a little love. And then to see them left all alone in a corner with no name to call themselves!
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Well, I knew what to call them -- I shall call them "Love"!
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(I shall also call them "There goes my weekend!". Another one is "Where the heck will I plant you?" And then there's "I don't really have time for this crap!" As well as "What kind of a nut-case are you, Sandy!" And so on and so on and so on. Yes, there are many names to my new babies! )
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Here are my newest additions -- as yet not IN the garden but placed NEAR the garden.
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Despite the non-reappearance this summer of my 2 yr old Coreopsis, I'm going to try again. I have 2 pots here -- a pretty yellow and the slightly larger bloom with the pretty red center. These were $2.34 each..
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These 4 pots were again $2.34 each. Beginning at the front and going counter-clockwise, we have: lavender (Whose name is also "Let's hope I find a good sunny spot for you because you sure smell like it wants to grow here!), Pink Yarrow (always wanted some), Fleece Flower and Garden Phlox.
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These little fellows were $1.94 each. Beginning with the large leaves in the centre and moving counter-clockwise, we have: Heartleaf Bergenia, Prunella Self-Heal, Wall Crest and 2 pots of Mallow, a white and a pink.
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This is, I believe, a Nicotina plant ($2.34), something else which has been on my plant list.

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And this is an unknown plant (which is, I'm sure, on my plant list!) I mean, doesn't it look like it will be a lovely plant? The now-dead blooms look like they were really nice!

I don't think it's a Liatris. Just what is it?

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Still, this is a non-denominational garden where plants of all sizes, color and creed are welcomed into the family and loved (almost) equally!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Thrifty Thursday


I took a break from staining last Saturday and visited the Summer Fling at West Side United Church. They served a wonderful full breakfast - eggs over easy, bacon, toast with the Pastor's homemade strawberry jam, juice and tea or coffee. Yum! I haven't eaten a breakfast like that in many months. I love going there because I see so many of my old friends and neighbours.
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They also had a great yard sale. Here's what I picked up.
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Two pretty necklaces for $1 each. See the bead details in Pic #2.














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Six vintage glasses for $1..


Paris keychain for $1 and ceramic plaque for $2.


Cancer (and my birthstone) phone or purse charm, cute little Cameo pin and small gold hoops for 25 cents each..


And to add to my addiction, I bought these 22 fairly recent copies of Canadian Home and Garden magazine for $2. Lots of good decorating ideas..


AND 47 older (1998 to 2006) copies of Canadian Gardening for $3; but it doesn't matter how old the gardening magazine right? Gardens never go out of style!.

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Now, let's go check out Bloggeritaville for other Thrifty Thursday finds.





Sunday, July 18, 2010

Weekend Production Line - Mosaic Monday

I'm linking to Mary's Mosaic Monday at her blog Little Red House today. (And yes, I'd already posted this when I noticed that my mosaic below gave me the opportunity to join in the link.)
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Ladies and Gentlemen!
I present to you my front deck!
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And here is the bottom of the stairs..

My daughter says it looks strange to have the 3 different colors. I, on the other hand, think it looks grand! But then, I'm not just looking at it with my physical eyes: I'm also looking at it through the eyes of my bank account (which loved the discounted prices). AND it's done! Just the side deck platform to do now.
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That was a hard-graft Friday! So, I spent Saturday lolly-gagging and doing what I pleased: a little yard saling, a great lunch at my favorite cafe, an evening of music out with friends. And that was grand!

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I spent Sunday with my garden furniture ........ and a few cheap paint brushes, sponge rollers and numerous cans of paint..


Ahhhh! A most productive and yet totally enjoyable weekend!
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Time for an early bed and the remainder of my book!
Goodnight sweet friends!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Fertilizer Friday - 16 July 2010



It's Friday --- time to flaunt our flowers with the illustrious Tootsie at Tootsie Time. So, please hop over there and see all the other gardens featured.


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This little sign sitting in my Balsam Alpine says it all doesn't it!
"Life is a Garden. Dig it!".

How pleased I am to see the Bee Balm bloom so beautifully (I challenge you to say that 5 times really quickly!). It makes me want more -- and different colors!.
And the Day Lilies! Ohhhhh, the Day Lilies! My crapping photography skills don't do them justice, but they are blooming everywhere in so many colors. Many of these lilies are ones that I planted the fall that I moved here 4 years ago, and they are blooming for the first time.

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I am madly in love with Day Lilies. And I just received a gardening catalogue in yesterday's mail with some beauties in it. Look out pocketbook!!
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And now, the sun is shining, I've got the day off, and my deck is crying out for more stain.
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Happy weekend everyone!


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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Thrifty Thursday - 15 July 2010


What a disappointment!


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I made the Strawberry Banana Muffins re yesterday's recipe. But they were awful! -- Heavy with a very strong banana taste and little strawberry flavor (I shoulda' known with bananas!) and a bitter afterbite from all the whole wheat flour. Back to the drawing board!!
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I've no new treasures to show you on this Thrifty Thursday! (That's being really thrifty, don't you think?) And it certainly wasn't a successful exercise in thrift having to throw those muffins in the compost bin! (Unless you consider it thrifty to have added to my future "black gold for the garden"!)
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But thrift is more than just a good bargain. Have a look at these words of wisdom:
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"Thrift is not an affair of the pocket, but an affair of character."
S.W. Straus
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That got me thinking about "thrift" as a lifestyle; and this aging journey that I'm on has been all about lifestyle changes and acceptance of these new lifestyles!
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Thrift is an affair of character; it's a state of being that must be learned and experienced and appreciated in order to be successful. It's not a necessity that I practice because I can't afford any better; it's a Godly gift. It's about being wise with ones finances certainly! But I think there's so much more to thrift!
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Sometimes it can be the sale item for that certain necessity that we've been waiting for; sometimes it's the $2 yard sale treasure that we don't need but buy as a treat! And sometimes it's the organization of one's time so our energies can be "spent" more wisely.
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But what about being thrifty with one's emotions? Is it thrifty to "cry over spilt milk", so to speak? And what about worrying about things over which we have no control and should leave to God? Am I practicing thrift when I grumble and complain that I've just wasted an hour of my evening and a cup of my lovely strawberries in baking that sad batch of muffins? Don't all of those things rob us of our happiness, our contentment and our sense of well-being? And when I'm sad or in a sour mood, I'm usually apt to waste time feeling sorry for myself or spend money trying to make myself feel better!
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Here are some definitions I found for "thrift":


  1. Parsimony: extreme care (in spending money); reluctance to spend unnecessarily
  2. An obsolete word for prosperity
  3. Vigorous growth of living things, such as plants
  4. Any of numerous sun-loving low-growing evergreens of the genus Armeria having round heads of pink or white flowers .

Yes! I want to be the definition of thrift!

.I want to careful in my finances and I certainly don't want to ex-spend my energies unnecessarily! I want to be prosperous! I want to experience vigorous growth (I mean emotionally NOT girth-wise!) And yes, I am a sun-loving, low-growing (5'3") trying-to-be evergreen woman who has a round head (usually white; not often pink unless embarassed or in the sun too long!)!.



Say it with me bloggies ..........
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I am a Thrifty Being!

And I am thankful to be one!




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Now, let's all smile and head over to Bloggeritaville for Thrifty Thursday .