Archive for February, 2007


I get quite a few visitors to my garden, and every once in a while I get a pretty good shot.

This is pretty much why I grow sunflowers and coreopsis.  I love to watch the gold finches as they avail themselves of the foodsource, they love to hand upside down.


Every spring and every fall the Monarch butterflies migrate through here.  The saga of their long travels never fails to intrigue me.  In the spring they like my echinacea:


In the fall, they love my autumn sedum and the torch tithoia that I allow to grow in my vegetable garden.  It makes me happy to know that I am providing sustenance for them on their long journey.


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Labyrinth again

It has been brought to my attention that I have promised a picture of the labyrinth.  The photo below was taken with my camera by the electrical company’s lineman, who happened to be on the property with a cherry picker truck to replace our transformer.


It is pretty shaggy in this picture.  It had been a couple of weeks since we mowed the paths.   The bright orange spotch in the lower right is an asiatic lily in full bloom.  The bench in the center is a slab of sandstone from Arkansas, it is 5 feet wide.  That should give you some scale.  The evergreens in the center are skyrocket junipers.  They are supposed to get 12 to 15 feet high, right now they are about 5 feet tall.   They started out as little babies that were 3 inches tall, so I think they have done rather well.


This is a picture of a group of rocks from New England.   The states represented here are in the New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont area.


These are from right north of here.  The large flat stone with ripples is from Iowa, the round stone on the left top is from Nebraska, the sort of egg shaped stone on the right is from South Dakota.  The three smaller rocks on the flat rock all came from Bear Creek in Alaska.  The sort of red-purple piece is from the Johnson Shutins, a place north of here.  This is an old picture.  There is now a rock from North Dakota in that grouping as well.

I am working on a guide-book:  photos and a list of where each rock is from.  I have it all in my head, but I may not always be here.

Sometimes I wonder what the archaeologist/geologist of the future might make of this installation.  Will it confuse them that there is basalt from Antarctica as well as granite from all over the western part of this continent?  Sandstone from Australia and Arizona coexist with shale from Nevada. 

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26feb07 Afternoon news

They say a picture is worth a thousand words.  Here are 3000 words:

This is what the white dragon sees:


These crocuses are right by my front walk.


I got my peas planted, too:


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News of the Day 26Feb07

Well, the dinner party was absolutely incredible.   The food was unbelievably delicious, just the right balances of spice.  Our guests brought some very excellent wine that accompanied the curried and peppered things served magnificently.

I was slightly inebriated and a little out of focus when I felt motivated to take these pictures.  The candles in the centerpiece had burned down so beautifully low. My angle was just slightly different, and the exposures didn’t come out the same either.  I have had a terrible time deciding which version of this I like better, so I’m just going to post both.



The dessert was even better than I had anticipated.  We have had this at a “local” restaurant before, but Jim’s version was so far superior that there was almost no comparison.  First of all, the cookies were home-made, with Ghirardelli dark chocolate dhips.   They came out of the oven, and while they were still warm we plated them and immediately put the perfectly warmed up vanilla ice cream on them.  A couple of soupspoons of chocolate sauce (simply cream with more of those dark chocolate chips melted in it along with a dollop of vanilla) went on top of that, and then fresh whipped cream was spooned on top of that.   This confection positively melted in your mouth and there was not a scrap left after we had all finished.  Since we were at a dinner party, we all managed to barely restrain ourselves from licking the dessert plates.  

It was wonderful to see how nice and clean my house was when I got up.   The dishwasher was full of clean dishes, and once I got them put away, I could load it with the glassware.  Now everything is all tidied up.  With all that cooking, I am still amazed at how clean the stove wound up being.   The new paints they have come out with perform a lot better than the ones that were on the stoves when I was a little girl. 

This morning I have given two massages, both of which were quite challenging.  While I was working the sun came out.  It is turning into a beautiful day, and we have decided that we need to play this afternoon rather than work.  So that is what we are going to do. 

Honestly, I love my life.

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This morning I polished my silver and stemware, ironed my table cloth and did some dusting.  We are having a few friends over for a dinner party this evening, and right now  J is out lighting the fire in the sauna.   After dinner, we likely will all go out and avail ourselves of that facility.

On the menu:  Chilaquiles, which is a casserole of corn tortillas, black beans, red chili sauce and cheese; curried cauliflower; mexican rice; chile rellenos, guacamole, and salsa.  Just a side note:  the tomato in all the sauces came from our garden, as did the black beans and the poblano chilis. 

For dessert we are having our version of what a Springfield restaurant calls “The Cookie Monster”.  Basically, this is a hot fudge sundae built on top of a freshly baked chocolate chip cookie.  Need I say that the cookies and hot fudge are home made, we will be whipping the cream while the cookies bake and we are using Haagen Dazs vanilla ice cream.  I don’t even want to know how many calories this will be, probably more than my daily allotment, and I don’t care either.  I am looking forward to it!

After a couple of warm days, it rained yesterday, about half an inch.  Today is raw and windy.  The crocuses have their heads tucked in for the day, but as soon as the sun comes out they will be saluting it briskly. 

Hope you all have had a wonderful weekend.  See you tomorrow.

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