Monday, June 24, 2013

Silver Lining

These breathtaking sunset pictures were taken from the North bound Amtrak train when approaching Bellingham, Washington a week ago.  It was nearing 9 pm, and for a few minutes the sky revealed a silver lining that poets have written about for centuries.  The passengers in the coach I was riding united in exclaiming the sky's beauty!  It was a moment to catch and we did! 

A silver lining in the sky brings a message that tomorrow will be brighter and lit with hope! 

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Planting, picking, cutting and watching.

Memorial Day weekend is the time we choose to plant our garden.  Here I am smoothing out the soil, preparing the raised bed ready for the arugula, lettuce, kale and tomato plants.  One raised bed is already planted with beets, onions, and basil. 

Strawberry season is in full swing, and we get ours down the street at a grower that is open to the public.  I was able to get "first pickings" and the berries were perfection. None were over ripe or unripe.  I froze most of them whole for smoothie making, and we have plenty left over for strawberries and ice-cream! 

The variety that are shown here are Shuksan.  They are medium sized, and sweet with a little tartness.

 I love to have roses to cut for bouquets and our garden is full of them.  They are "Old Roses" that have a heavenly scent.  The bushes have been in the ground untold years, and we don't know the name of each one.  In time we hope to bring the plants back to fullness and health.  Roses are not difficult to care for, but they do need a little boost to thrive. 
We are sure this is a Peace Rose.  It is apparent by the slightly pink petals.  This is a rose that has been chosen and planted in my family garden ever since I can remember. 

The next several roses are beautiful, but I don't know their names. 

One last little joy appeared this week.  A family of Yellow Finches came to the bird bath.  They are very quick, but I was able to snap this picture through the window.  There are two females, and two males in the family.  The nest must be close by because we see have seen them often. 
We will keep watching this finch family grow. My wish is that the entire brood will come to the bird bath, and the camera will be handy! 

Have a good week!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Some of this and some of that.....

Right after the first of the new year we had our two very large maple trees trimmed professionally.  Several men came loaded with climbing gear and chain saws.  These men are called "tree monkey's" and that explains what we saw them do.  They climbed the trees like monkeys, swinging from limb to limb. Maple trees like ours grow wispy and bend with the wind. It is easy for the limbs to break off and it was obvious that we could have issues if the trees were not taken care of.   The cost of having trees like this trimmed and the limbs cleaned up can run into the thousands.  We opted to clean up the limbs ourselves, but after the trees were trimmed the limbs had to lay there for a few weeks.  My Jim had hip replacement surgery in February and we are happy to say that it was a successful surgery and you can see all the clean up work he has accomplished in the beautiful pile of wood stacked up!  I asked him to stack it where I could look at it while it drys, and before it goes into the wood shed for the coming winter.  It is a great resting place for squirrels, birds and cats. 

This time last year we had a gopher killing, and once again there has been a double killing of two very busy gophers.  One is quite a bit larger than the other....Mr. and Mrs?  The other gopher family members are still attaching our yard but they better watch out!  Jim is actively pursuing them and doing it with determination!

Even our neighbors take great pride when we get them, by stopping to cheer Jim on with his traps, and attempts at making our yard gopher free. 
We have form of collecting going on inside the house.  Dinosaurs have taken up residence on a table top.
We have four grand children and they love the dinosaurs. 
It is a delight to watch them play with them and tell us what each ones name is.  I like the dino's because they can go outside and come back in for bath time. 

Our little two (almost three) year old grandson can play for a long time with an armload of the creatures.  We join in and have pretty good roaring contests that tickle everyone! 

Out the bathroom window, recently, I heard some commotion from the chickens.  I looked out to see two horses resting behind the coup.  Our neighbors have a riding arena and board horses.  On this day it was raining and the horses took cover under some very large fir trees.  Until the last couple of years we have had horses and miss them in our barn yard.  Having a large compound next door makes it ideal for us to interact with the horses but not have all the work.  They are such smart animals and certainly enjoy attention....much like human beings! :) 

That's about it for Some of this and some of that.   
What have you been up to?