Showing posts with label nature. Show all posts
Showing posts with label nature. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Off to Scrabble while Transatlantic

Today I put up a new blog picture header from the view out my study window.  Fallish, autumnal colors and a pretty ash tree quickly losing its leaves.  The time to hunker down is coming closer.

But for the next few weeks, I will be in Spain and then across the ocean back to the Americas, landing in Ft. Lauderdale in mid November.  I will be checking in and posting pictures from Barcelona and the Canary Islands, along with a few pictures of Scrabble tournament play while aboard the Celebrity Equinox.

For now, I leave you with this picture of a cosmos seed that was planted in May and has grown and topped up at five feet, two inches.  An amazing feat since most of the cosmos plants were well under three feet in height.  We will be saving the seeds for next spring from this yellow mother plant to see if the new plants from this giant will reproduce tall plants also.


And the usual size of our cosmos plants:

(September, 2014)
Happy Fall and see you in a few days.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

What They Said, What They Shared

Without other people in our lives pointing us to new things to read, new things to cook, new reasons for "why things happen", new things to view on tv, and  new knitting techniques and patterns, our lives would not be near as diverse.  So here are a few of my new favorite things that have lateley been pointed out to me.

...as relating to online games, this article is well worth a read about Granny Chichi who lives in Belize and is whupping her journalistic grandson in the most charming of wordy ways  (Severo Avila said it)

...as relating to cooking, here are a few absolutely delicious recipes my friends and husband have made over the past few months. I was a lucky recipient of their good eats. (Gene, Natalie, and Dottie said it)
...as related to why it rains in the fallthis is what Simon said

...as related to streaming movies, this summer I have watched and enjoyed the following older movies, new to me (Pam mostly said it)
  • The Chorus
  • Haute Cuisine
  • Found Memories
  • Stories They Tell
  • Midsomer Murders with new episodes just released
...as relating to knitting, (Esther Budd  said it) the Her Royal Highness Shawl, which I am knitting for the second time because I am a glutton for punishment, tells me I am currently knitting, in the round, several thousand stitches just on one round for the ruffle on this shawl.
Above is Kate the Duchess of Cambridge in 2011 in a knitted green shawl that caused a stir in the fiber world. If you click on the source link, you will see where it could have been purchased back then.  Esther Budd came up with a pattern for the knit shawl that you can purchase here.  So now you can make your own shawl similar to that of the Duchess.  You can see why Budd calls it the "suicide ruffle" in her pattern if you have ever knit this many stitches in just one pattern repeat
(started on the suicide ruffle a day ago, apologies for poor quality of that green color)

this is the yarn for the HRH shawl I'm working on:  numma numma in wintermint and a truer color shown, referred by The Knit Girllls
What have YOU been pointed to lately?  What have you learned?  What can you recommend?  Tell, tell!

Photobucket
Linking as usual with Tami at Works in Progress Wednesday and Yarn Along and Fiber Arts Friday.

and Natural Suburbia.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Glorious Gladiolas

Our neighbor planted 250 gladiola bulbs a few years ago and shared these blooming beauties with us yesterday.


He did not know his gladiola colors complemented my silk painting above the fireplace.  So the glads are staying in front of the fireplace.

(39" x 41")
Kudos to nice neighbors.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Judith Weir

Highly recommended: The Welcome Arrival of Rain (Judith Weir)


a snippet of this album can be downloaded here (a 2008 recording)

Took this snap this morning while changing the blog header....water, rain, Judith Weir composes evocative instrumental sounds; BBC Symphony Orchestra in performance

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Seize the Day

Carpe diem, said Horace.  We did.

Corn growing yesterday early morning, with the help of Gene's green thumb and God's good sun and water:

And, later in the day, it was eaten an hour after cutting it from nine foot stalks:


(the cosmos and coreopsis are now in full bloom)

A trip up to the mountains for lake fishing:

This scenery was behind me at one spot where I fished. A bearded "mountain looking" guy came by on the trail and said that he had been angling directly across from us, near where beaver had cut down trees for a small dam.  He said he moved because he could hear pups nursing in the brush beside him but decided to quietly move on because he did not want to disturb the mother and pups.  He said he figured it was beaver pups, but did not even try to get a peek.  Now that is a considerate fisherman.
breathtaking trees with the reflections mirrored on the lake

This little chipmunk kept crawling over my shoes and assortment box, trying to get into my trail mix.  Never did let him get a bite, though.  These creatures were seen frequently and had no fear of humans.  I suspect many people feed them, although it is not a park-approved practice.  This baby chipmunk was about six inches long.  He may have been the one to have stolen the top piece of bread from a bologna sandwich in a baggie, unbeknownst to Gene until he reached into the Ziplock to take a bite of lunch.


Total catch for the day: two fish. One was a splake (a cross between a lake trout and a brook trout) and one was a rainbow trout. The splake is an oilier fish with redder meat than what a rainbow trout sports.  It was delicious, tasting somewhat like salmon.

Besides the corn and the fish, our dinner was completed with tomatoes and cucumbers from the garden, along with cilantro butter from Kepanie's Pinterest pin::


That was our seizing of the day.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Card Table Toppers: Easy Sewing

Following the advice of my mother from years past, one should not put plastic on the table, be it flowers or vinyl tablecloths.  That maxim has stuck with me.

So when we use a card table, I usually end up folding a tablecloth in half and throwing it over the card table. Inefficient.  But this week I decided to use fabric on hand, as well as purchasing a bit of new semi-coordinating cottons and made two card table toppers.

 Yellow Brick Road fabric
 Fleur di  lis
 Cabbage Roses






They make me happy.  Half inch seams all around.  35 inch squares for the top; envelope sides, 18" deep. Easy peasy. Coordinating cloth napkins are in sewing process.

Now for eating alfresco.

Son in law Jack's picture of a rabbit in his yard this week, taking a break to scratch his ear before hopping away:


Friday, July 18, 2014

Refrigerator Pickles and Last Year at this Time

Using Gumbo Lily's recipe for refrigerator pickles, this batch was made prior to driving up on the Mesa for fishing yesterday. The Left Handed Housewife told us that she had made a batch, and Gumbo Lily's picture looked so aesthetically appealing that a copy cat version had to be tried. Green beans, carrots, cucumbers, garlic, onions and red and green peppers were cut up are now ready for consumption since those 24 hours of pickling time have passed.



The fishing report for areas around Grand Junction, Colorado on July 15, 2014, courtesy of Sportsman's Warehouse:


We went to the Mesa Lakes area, about an hour away and 11,000 feet in elevation, where Gene and I caught six rainbow trout.  Fun was had, weather was perfect, the old green camp chair was comfortable, the aspen trees were in their full summer greens. And fish were jumpin'.  The two largest trout were grilled last night for dinner, and the remaining four will be used Monday in trout cakes.


Today's recipe agenda is calling me to make Ina Gardner's gazpacho.  You won't recall, but I do well remember posting this excursion into healthy eating here. Apparently, we were big into apricots three years ago as well, looking back at that post.

Mid July flowers growing, front and back of the house:


.
(coreopsis)

Last year at this time of summer I was on one of the Shetland islands when the daylight lasted for about nineteen hours and the produce was at its height. What an experience!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Wednesdays Are For Fishin'

Got me a new Fishing Shirt with all kinds of bells and whistles on it that includes loops and pockets and more loops.  It is a man's shirt, all cotton, and of course I was glad I had that big one ordered, knowing all too well the properties of cotton being tumbled in a hot dryer.  Oh, and it is pink and white striped.  It takes some king of macho guy to wear that color fishing.  But for me, pink is great.

Gentle readers, don't judge me, but I failed to report that last week I caught seven rainbow.  This easy, quick aioli sauce is my favorite to use with trout: no bottled tartar sauce for me, thank you.

For the sewists:

Look at the Tessuti site from Australia that was recommended by a friend.  Boy, was I glad to find this shop.They even have free downloads, so of course this shirt was a must:

The Fave Shirt found here and free:
Downloads are about 40 pages long, but only have a few lines on each page, so the printer ink is minimal. Then you fit the pattern together like a jigsaw puzzle, ingenious.  Be sure to get the A4 paper, not the American paper that comes in 8.5"x11".  I purchased a ream from Amazon after going to Office Max where I was told no place in the USA carried this style paper (wrong, don't believe everything you hear).  And as for the printer settings using A4 paper, be sure to also set your printer for that size paper.

It will be a fave top; already made one and another is on the machine all cut out and ready to go. It uses a twin needle for hemming the top, so that was another foray into finding the one called for.  The first top I made was a bit snug on the forearm, so it was increased at the bottom of the sleeve for my fat arm accommodation.

Look what opened this morning...
from zinnia seedlings started in April...


The kiss of the sun for pardon, 
The song of the birds for mirth,
One is nearer God's heart in a garden 
Than anywhere else on earth.    ~Dorothy Frances Gurney


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Gardening in June

High country gardening techniques say
...to prolong the blooming period of columbine you need to interrupt this seed producing process by removing the faded flowers and any seed pods that have formed. The plant then sends up more flowers in an effort to make more seeds. Since columbine are perennial and grow back from their rootstock, you'll still have a columbine in the same spot next year... source
It is a shame to pluck these beauties and denude them of flowers.  But I saved some columbines in pictures just in case we don't get another crop of yellow columbines this summer.


The penstemon were in full bloom this week also.  I cut them down, too.  Ruthlessly, in fact.  But they will exhibit again, history reminds me.  They tolerate partial shade, which is what the sun in the back displays.

I have been transplanting daises also.  The above ones that are caged are white and have a short bloom period, but are worth the wait.  Crossing my fingers they will get enough sunlight for blooming.  I lost bluebells to the lack of sun, and had to transplant purple marshmallow to a different location for better growth.
Marshmallow (purple)


Above are cosmos that were started from seed in April in the kitchen window.  The "before" picture is below of both the cosmos and the zinnias.


And zinnia plants now, almost ready for transplanting AGAIN

And lastly, for historical botanical purposes, is the penstemon purchased for the wildflower garden begun in 2012.
Then (2012)
and now (2014):

Even though I have lost several plants over the winter, overall the garden is doing well.  How is YOUR garden growing?

source (Denslow, public domain)

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Trout

Fish!  We caught fish!  The husband and I each caught our trout limit this morning in a bit over an hour in a lake twenty minutes from our house.  We kept the biggest of the eight, six total were brought home.  They will be fried up in a pan outdoors over a grill fire for dinner tonight.



This is a swordfish.  I am on the left and Kathy is on the right, with the fish in the middle, in case you wondered. That picture was taken years ago when we had a girls' weekend in Cabo San Lucas and reminds me of our great vacation.  And no, we did not catch that sailfish.  We just rode on others' fishing experiences.  

And lastly, more painting on the fence.  Think maybe we are through with this effort.  It is getting too hot to paint outside anymore; we are expecting 91 degrees F today.