Friday, May 28, 2010

Down the Garden Path

My garden is looking amazing, though if the 90 degree weather keeps up  it won't for long.  The first of the Gladiolas have bloomed, a soft salmon color.





Day Lilies and regular lilies are also blooming. I have 2 different Day Lilies, an orange and brown type  and a soft  orange orange .  The regular lilies are red.




The Hydrangeas are all turning a lovely blue which means our soil is acid.


The Gerbera Daisies look like sunset, I've never had any this color before.


The Lantana is usually grown as a bush, but I'm growing one of mine as a tree.  Lantana is another of those plants that after I had bought some I discovered that they grow wild here and you just dig them up and move them to your garden.


I lost 2 of my Hibiscus this last winter  but have replaced one of them, they're not particularly cold hardy but nothing else bothers them.



Thursday, May 27, 2010

I've Been Working

I've been working, well not really, I don't do that any more, but I have been working on a new desk for me.
I actually wanted a vintage one, but our local antique shop had nothing resembling one and I knew the stores in Savannah would want an arm, a leg and our first born child ---and we only have one--- for any kind of desk.  So I searched online and decided that even if I found one shipping would kill me so I broke down and got one, and a chair, from Walmart.  They didn't have any white ones, which is what I really wanted so I knew I'd have to paint it.
Mac kindly put it together for me and I started painting it, I realized I probably should have sanded it before painting but it was too late for that.  It ended up taking 3 coats.  So before I painted the chair I sanded it and guess what, it took 3 coats too!
The chair had an ugly brown cover on the seat so I recovered that and made a little pillow for my back.
This is what I have been using to sew on and scrapbook on and do everything on---not the most attractive or stable workspace.  Now I need to clean up my area and get to work.
I presently working of a project for Mac for Father's Day, I got him the new treadmill he was needing, but I want to make him something sweet too, hope he likes it.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Older Then Dirt

As if I didn't already feel older then dirt, 15 minutes older than God, a friend sent me a link to a site where I could find out how old I was in days.  It turns old that I am 23, 245 days old, that's 3320 weeks and some odd days.  Now I am depressed!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Confession

I have an absolutely horrible confession to make.  When I was watching the finale of Lost last night we had a really bad thunder storm and it know knocked our satellite out, I was horrified, I was sick, I, I, I called my daughter long distance in Maryland and made her do a play by play until the storm passed and I had the show back on again.
How embarrassing!  I'm not a big t.v. watcher, but Lost is one of the few shows that  I watch on a regular basis.  It wasn't great television, and as a matter of fact I hated the two main characters Jack and Kate, although Jack redeemed himself this season.
I didn't particularly like the ending, having them all be dead was a cop-out, I didn't feel like they really tied the the island and the side-ways story together.  I did like the final scene with Jack where he had begun, on the beach with the dog licking his face.
But I'm still embarrassed I called my daughter.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Faeries


I've always had a fascination with faeries, loved reading stories about them, loved drawings and paintings of them, and absolutely loved the movie Fairy Tale about the Cottingley Fairies-----saw one of the girl's daughter and grandaughter on the Antique Road Show with the fairy pictures and the camera they took them with. 
Most of my life I have never done anything in the way of drawing or painting.
 But a few years ago, inspired by Cicely Mary Barker's beautiful faery pictures I decided to see if I could draw them too.
I used colored pencil and made many copies.  I was thrilled, I could draw.
Following 
up on my interest in faeries a couple of years ago my daughter April gave me a faery house which I put in the garden.  This year I've planted Impatiens in front of it and
 Mac and Miss Kitty gave me a little bear on a swing for Mother's Day and we hung it in the tree behind the house.
Hope someone nice moves in....no alligators need apply.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Garden Musings



Outside of planting a big red Geranium in a pot for the deck by the pool and putting some Sunflowers in another I haven't done much  in the garden lately.  For some reason May has decided that it wants to be July and it has been very hot and humid.  We were supposed to go down the coast to Shellman's Bluff this week, but decided to wait for a break in the weather.  And my poison ivy just won't go away.  I keep coating myself with the ointment the Doctor prescribed and taking my antihistamine and the poison ivy keeps spreading.  The worse patch has dried up but it left behind lots of stepchildren on both legs, and now my husband has a patch and he's never had poison ivy either.  So I've been staying indoors a bit to avoid heat and evil plants.
Anyway, my garden blooms on without me.  The Gardenias are heading into full bloom, just ask my runny nose and eyes, 
and the Mimosa tree is in full flower.  I really like Mimosas even though they're very invasive and I have to pull a ton of them up each year.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Shadow Box




The Victorian Trading Company is always sending me catalogs, and I drool over them and then throw them away.  Recently I saw a shadow box in one of their catalogs and decided I'd make my own.  They only wanted $19.95 for theirs, and I probably spent more than that to make mine.  But I enjoyed making it instead of buying it.  Mac is finding me a butterfly to put on it and I need to add a ribbon, but I'm rather pleased.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

In the Catbird Seat


To be in the catbird seat is to be in charge, well that's definitely Miss Kitty.  She's had a window perch in the computer room for a couple of years.  But the view is less than thrilling, it overlooks the two air conditioning units, which are usually good for a couple of lounging lizards but not much else.  Mac added a bird feeder but the squirrels took it over and after the first thrill of something furry outside her window she has decided that she doesn't really like the squirrels.  Another problem with this perch is that in the summer it gets a lot of sun and she melts there.
So a couple of weeks ago Mac put another feeder up outside the family room window.  At first he put it low, but the birds were less than appreciative of the cat staring at them, singing in her less than melodic way, while they tried to eat, so they stopped using it.  He had to move it up a bit and that seemed to make all involved happier.
So this has become Kitty's favorite location.  Only problem was that she was wider than the window sill.  Yesterday Mac made her a new perch and I made a cover for it.  She was a little doubtful at first, but we convinced her that the green complimented her eyes, so all is well. 

Monday, May 17, 2010

Fingers Intact, Pillows Made




Though I sewed through my left index finger the first day I sewed, I knew it'd been a while since I'd used my sewing machine, I've gotten a load of pillows done.  Most went into the gold bedroom which needs to be painted desperately and I hate to paint in the summer, particularly upstairs.  But that's the room our daughter uses when she visits and she's coming in July for her birthday so I may have to overcome my reluctance.  
The other pillows are on the couch in the livingroom, but I hate the couch cover and it needs to be replaced, I'm thinking a white slipcover.
The next pillows are for the white bedroom but I need some cording before I can go on.  I've also finished 2 table covers and a curtain topper for the laundry room.  So far I'm really pleased with the material I got from fabric.com, I'll definitely order from them again.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Are You Looking For Me?

Here I was thinking that I was 10 years older than dirt, but it's my next door neighbor's house the Turkey Vultures  are roosting on.
They're also known as Turkey Buzzards.  They come every Spring and generally leave in the Fall heading North to breed.  Unattatched males frequently stay behind, making a mess as single males often do.
Great wing span, they warm themselves up then spend the day riding the thermals and picking up road kill, great sanitation workers.
I love watching them sun themselves when it's not my roof they're using.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Love in the fast Lane or "Don't box me in."



We have several pairs of Eastern Box turtles around and near the house, they sometimes nest in the yard, but I have not seen them this year yet. There is a street in the sub division that they seem to like, for we have seen them there on many occasions, not all good. Some have been injured or killed by cars. So you can imagine our frame of mind when we saw two box turtles ambling across the road on this same street. The larger turtle I'm sure was the female and the smaller one, following closely with a gleam in his eye, had to be the male. They were in the middle of the road and not going across, but right down the middle, I knew the male wasn't thinking, but the lady should of had better sense. So we picked them up and completed our walk, and brought them home, always room for two more turtles. I put them down in the backyard, and discretely backed off, so as to not cramp his style. They kept their heads in for a while, and then the female stuck her head out and headed for the bushes. The male shot his head out looked around and took off, not toward the female, but straight into the lagoon, and did not stop swimming until he reached the other side! So much for love in the fast lane!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Hard Shell Southerners



In the lagoon in our backyard we have a number of turtles, mostly what are called pond sliders. When we first moved here in '03 we had maybe two or three turtles that hung around out back. Then Janet started feeding the fish and of course the turtles knew a good thing when they saw one.  Pretty soon we had doubled the number of turtles out back and now it's not unusual to have twenty or more of them milling around out there. I have had to stop fishing out back for fear of catching one of "our turtles", as Janet says. We now buy a couple of loaves of cheap white bread and cheap hotdogs just for them. They follow me up and down the bank, if I try to fish, I tried sneaking around, but they find me pretty quick. It has gotten to the point that when I open the back door, which is at least a 100 feet from the lagoon, all these little heads start to pop-up. Janet has given them names, such as lefty, as you can see by the picture she is missing part of her right foot.                                                                                                                                        

 About this time of year, the older females climb out of the lagoon at night, especially on a warm wet night, and dig a nest and lay eggs, I always try  to find the nest before the raccoons.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A Short Tale of Scales and Tails!


Looked out the window this morning to check out the garden and ran across this little scene. Mr Squirrel, who had been busy raiding the bird feeder, quickly noticed that he was not alone. Mr snake was catching some rays, or so his posture would tell you, but Mr Squirrel knew better, never trust a snake, and above all else NEVER turn your back on one. 
Mr Squirrel held this pose for about ten minutes, then with what appeared to be boredom, the snake slithered off. Mr Squirrel was not convinced and continued to keep his eyes glued to the spot where the snake had been. You could tell he was dying to get back to squirrel central to boast to all his friends, especially that stuck up bimbo with the tail job. But first he would have to figure out a way to get back, as he was not much good at scaling walls.

Bills, Bills and Bills


Yes the first of the month always brings in a load of bills, the house payment, cell phone payment, internet bill, electric bill, you know the drill.  But then my Macy's bill comes in.  Yes it's a bill and yes they want money from me, but more than that  my Macy's bill always smells like heaven,  they always include a perfume insert.  This month's was Euphoria by Calvin Klein, and if I were not a dedicated Opium by Yves St.Laurant user I'd order a bottle.  It smells so good, very floral, though I usually prefer spicy.
So I'll pay my bills, grumble a bit and then sniff my Macy's and smile.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Poison Ivy, Poison Ivy...Late At Night While You're Sleeping...



Or in my case, during the daytime.  I have poison ivy/oak for the first time in my life and I'm 10 years older than God, could have dated his older brother.  All my life I've played in the yard, yanking out weeds of all size, shape and dimension without a care about poison ivy/oak, I wasn't susceptible to it, that was something my older sister got, not me.
Well times have changed and this Spring my lower right leg is covered with it and it's generous enough to share it with my other leg.  Had to have a shot, lashings of a cortisone cream and some pills to stop the itching.
I guess I'll learn to be a little more selective in the weeds I pull out.

Monday, May 10, 2010

A Monday in May


Because they gave a forecast for temperatures only in the 70's we decided to go back out to Tybee Beach today.  This time Mac was going surf fishing and I was going to try to paint Tybee Lighthouse again.  I've painted it several times but I've never really been happy with the results.  So we parked by  old Ft. Screven a coastal fort that's now a museum.  Mac went to fish and I walked all the way around the lighthouse to see if I could find a better view for they were unloading an old wooden house on the front side.  But I decided that I'd sit where I always do on a wooden bench in front  and paint.
And paint I did, but I've finally decided that the lighthouse doesn't like me
 and I'm reaching the point where I don't like it either.  In other words I'm not very happy with my painting.
When Mac came back he said he hadn't caught anything that the water was too rough so he'd searched for fossilized shark's teeth and had found a number of small ones.
We packed up the car and headed off to the Crab Shack for lunch.  It's nothing special, and indeed today it was less than that.  Mac had his usual Low Country Boil and I had a half pound of steamed shrimp.  I figure that with the mess down in the Gulf that soon shrimp here will be sky high so I should enjoy them while I can.  The shrimp were  fine, but for some reason we were again stuck with a waitress who wasn't much interested in serving.  When we got our drinks and we asked for cups to pour them into she disappeared and we ended up getting our own cups.
I alway grumble when we eat at the "Shack" because they don't have salads, and to me a meal without a salad isn't really a meal, so when I got home I had a small one.
It was beautiful at the beach, and though neither of our efforts was very successful we had a good day, any day you don't have to work and you get to play is a good day.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day



Happy Mother's Day to all.  It is a beautiful, sunny day in coastal Georgia and the weather has cooled to the 70's so I know I'm going to have a great day.  Presents were given, cards were read and a long phone call with my daughter April, so wish she was here.  But she said she'd come down here for her birthday in July and that was a wonderful present.
I'm going to spend the day in the yard and if it's warm enough in the pool.  The pool is at its aromatic best right now.  When we had the pool put in I knew that I wanted loads of aromatic flowers planted around it, both for privacy and the treat to the senses.  So I planted Gardenias, Honeysuckle, Jasmine, and Buddelia.  Everything except the Buddelia is blooming now.

In front of the house all of the Bee Bushes are blooming, I wish I knew their real names, but they were here when we bought the house and I have no idea what they are, except the bees love them.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Yard Sales Revisited


As I said in a post last year, I really don't get Yard Sales.  You hurry from house to house looking to buy stuff you don't really want or need, but because it's  a bargain you buy it, bring it home, don't know what to do with it and stuff it in the closet or attic.  
So why am I revisiting Yard Sales?   Because tomorrow is our subdivision's annual yard sale.   
 Mac and I have spent the last week going through closets and the attic dragging out junk, including some that I bought at a yard sale.  Originally I said that I didn't want to do the yard sale this year.  It means getting up at dawn on a Saturday after we've been out dancing on Friday night, trying to set up as people are already going through our things, having some little old lady, who's in such a hurry to get to our stuff run into our mailbox (without saying so much as a "Sorry"),  and then having to pack up what doesn't sell and haul it back up into the house.  Have I mentioned it's 12 steps up to our house and that doesn't include the steps up to the second story.
Well the deal this year is that anything that doesn't sell goes into the back of the car and straight to the county dump.  And I'm not getting up at dawn.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

You Can't Go Home Again


Well Thomas Wolfe was right, you can't go home, and in our case you're better off not going back to a restaurant you liked in the past.  We made that mistake yesterday returning to a restaurant we'd thoroughly enjoyed  on our last visit, we were still raving about their shrimp and lump crab quiche.  And as luck would have it that quiche was the only good thing we had yesterday.
It took almost 10 minutes for our drinks to show up, another 10 to get a glass of water, a long wait for our order to be taken and the waitress tried to rush off before we were finished giving it. The salads we'd enjoyed previously, a tasty mixture of greens, tomatoes and what tasted like homemade salad dressing appeared at our table as a crouton cube and dust mess with faux bacon bits and cruddy little cheese shavings---I hate cheese on my salad.  They were not good, but we'd waited a long time to get food in front of us so we ate, hoping that the appetizer that should have come first might still show up before our entrees.  But it was not to be.  Someone in the restaurant has got to figure out that an appetizer, also known as a starter, is called that because it's supposed to "tease you appetite, get you started", it's not the same when it shows up with your entree.
And our phantom waitress only spoke to us once more wanting to know if we wanted another drink, I guess our lack of thirst convinced her we could be left on our own to enjoy our meal, which we did not.  They weren't good.  The quiche was of course delicious, but my Shrimp Po' Boy was blah, Mac's Blackened Shrimp were all spice no shrimp.  We decided to take the shrimp and quiche home with us but couldn't get the attention of  the waitress who was kneeling on the floor (hands on the floor too--doesn't that do a lot for your appetite)  talking to friends at another table, so we  instead wrapped our food in a napkin, went to the cash register to pay, though we had no bill, the waitress rushed up apologizing, we gave her a $2.00 on a $45.00 bill, probably the lowest tip we've ever given.  She probably cursed us, well I'm visiting the restaurant's website and cursing her.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Sapelo Island




We went to  Sapelo Island yesterday, it's another of Georgia's Barrier Islands, and is about 40 miles south of us.  You have to take a boat out to it and then do a bus tour, though if you rent one of the places on the island you can wander around on your own.  
The island is owned by the state of Georgia, except for about 400 acres that make up the Hog Hammock Community, a community made  up of the descendants of slaves who once worked on the island.  There are about 45 full-time residents left who  are primarily Gechee/Gullah.
The University of Georgia maintains classrooms and workstations on the island too.
The island was originally settled by Indians, then 
the  Spanish followed by the French.  In the late 1700's Thomas Spalding built a plantation there to grow sea island cotton and sugar cane.
This house was rebuild in 1912 by Howard Coffin who made a fortune in cars and then he sold it to R.J.Reynolds  the tobacco giant in the 1930's.

  It's now known as the Reynold's Lodge House and groups of at least 16 can rent it for $170 a night for a 2 day minimum stay.  My favorite room was the Solarium.  Very Art Deco.  I also liked the library, a little book envy here or perhaps just bookcase  envy.
The lighthouse was great, originally built in 1820, mostly destroyed during the hurricane of 1898 and restored in the 70's, I think.  Of course I wanted to sit and paint it but being
 on a tour I couldn't so we'll either have to go back and stay on the island, which I'd like to do or I'll have to paint it from the picture I took.

Our last stop was out at Nanny Goat Beach, picked up a few sea shells, I'm collecting shells from every beach we visit and I'm going to make a wreath out of them.  It always amazes me to see miles of empty beach with no one on them.  People whiz down the Interstate headed to Florida with its packed beaches and don't have a clue as to the beautiful beaches here in Georgia. My husband always says, "Keep on driving, hope they never discover our coastline."
So all in all a nice trip, given the fact that Mac and I both hate tours.  Our tour guide Gloria was very good, very knowledgable, and the other people on the tour weren't too bad except for one lady who crawled about every where, laying on the ground taking "artistic" photos of everything.
We then went to lunch in Darien to a restaurant we'd discovered last year and enjoyed hugely only to have a very unhappy experience, but I'll Blog about that later.



Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Things My Elders Told Me...Truths To Be Passed on To A New Generation


Sitting here on a misty Tuesday morning feeling 10 years older than dirt thinking about me as a kid and all the things my older relatives told me that were supposed to help me on my life's journey.  Some were wise, some were weird, some made no sense at all, but as a young child who liked to hang out and listen to adults I took it all in.
Here are a few gleamings;
My Mother told me not to wear lipstick that I would lose the natural color of my lips if I did.  Don't know if she was right, but I've worn little lipstick through my life and I still have colorful lips.
She also told me smoking would make my breasts small, I know she was trying to stop me from smoking, but this was one of the weird ones.  Well I did have small breasts when I was a smoker and larger ones when I quit, but I'm pretty sure that had more to do with putting on weight than not smoking.
Of course she told me that eating crusts would make my hair curly, HA, that eating carrots would make my eyes better, that's not going to happen, and that fish was brain food.  Probably all good advice, but I'm still the world's fussiest eater.
My maternal Grandmother told me that Dragonflies were God's darning needles and that if I lied that they'd sew my lips shut,  that one use to worry me a lot.
My paternal Grandmother, not to be out done, told me that if I wasn't careful that I'd go down the drain in the bathtub.  Thanks Granny, that one has added to my nightmares through the years.
My Dad probably gave me the best advice, don't bother people when they're busy even if it doesn't look like they're busy.  This one has kept me out of a lot of trouble through the years.
I'm sure I've given  my daughter more than one piece of weird and wonderful advice.

Tuesday in the Swamp

The house is once again filled with the smell of Gingerbread, I baked a load of little men, even wore my Gingerbread Apron, but I'm too ...