Tag Archives: flowers

It felt good to play in the dirt, until….

 

Spring has been a long time coming and I’m way behind on my garden work.

By this time I’ve usually got all the beds cleaned out and a few flowers blooming.

This year?

I’ve got weeds.

 

 

And random spikey things.

 

 

I spent 3 hours today getting rid of both.

 

 

I also reseated the brick border and tackled a bit of the bush from Hell.

 

 

If anyone ever asks if you want a flowering quince? Run.

Run far, and fast.

Preferably after you punch them in the throat for suggesting it in the first place.

Ours was here when we moved in and we’ve been battling it ever since. It grows over the roof each season and has roots that are 300 friggin’ feet deep. We’ve tried to dig it up, burn it out and hack it down to nubs numerous times.

I believe it likes the challenge….. and comes back stronger every time.

 

 

Did I mention it’s also full of thorns?

 

 

Good times.

I did 6 beds in the back and on the side of the house and felt good….

 

 

Until….

 

 

I turned over a brick and disturbed an ant nest. Within seconds those little suckers were crawling all over me and I had to run for a hose.

I rinsed most of them off but not before a few crawled up my pant leg.

 

 

Sadly, yes…. there were.

And the little bastards bit me too.

I fear I’ll never catch up…

 

Which is why I’m posting about Valentines Day at the end of March.

 

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It started with a nice bouquet of roses….

 

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And a kitchen selfie before we went out for a late lunch on the water.

 

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The building used to house a garage… and was previously a wonderful restaurant called, are you ready?

La Garage.

Clever… no?

But now it has new owners and a new incarnation as the Water Street Kitchen and Bar.

 

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It sits on the Sheepscot River in Wiscasset and please pardon the reflection of my hands in the window.

 

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We’ve been wanting to try it for a while, and found that’s it’s undergone a major remodel.

 

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The feel is more modern.

 

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And I have to say I was loving the metal works installations. This would be perfect for all my husband’s rusty crap treasures!

 

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But first things first.

 

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A marvelous basil limeade with a view….

 

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The menu was small, but seemed alright.

 

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And just as the waitress brought my (overly salted) charred Brussels sprouts appetizer, the husband saw a friend of his walk in and asked them to join us.

On Valentines Day.

Oh, well.

 

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This called for two Blueberry Mojitos… .because a girl can only take so much romance.

Husband had a butternut squash soup, which you couldn’t pay me to eat.

 

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And then it was on to a rather dry, garlic-less shrimp scampi for me, and an overcooked paella for the other half.

 

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The meal was redeemed by dessert.

 

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A delightful lemon marscapone cake…

Husband’s friends said their meals were good, and the cocktails were lovely so we might give them another try.  We do like the area and supporting small businesses.

 

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And I might have to take another look at the metal works.

 

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They really were quite interesting.

 

Celebrating 36 years of not killing each other…..

 

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Yes, there’s that as well.

This was the very first picture of us ever taken ….

 

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Back in 1984, on that awful chair at his mother’s house…… right before we got married. I may look twelve, but no worries. I’d just turned 20. (As for the husband’s hair… I have no idea what was going on there.)

We knew each other for 6 days.

Yes, you read that correctly…. 6 days. And to be honest, 3 of those were the required waiting period for the marriage license.

People thought we were crazy.  (We knew we weren’t.)

 

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People said it would never last.  (It’s been 36 years.)

 

Me & Fred, ballfield

 

The Grateful Dead had it right…..

What a Long Strange Trip It’s Been!

 

Me & Fred, Harley Rally 2

 

But I wouldn’t trade a minute of it.

Anyway…. this year on our anniversary?

 

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A seriously beautiful bouquet from my other half….

 

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That got better every day as all the blooms opened up.

 

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The rose colors were gorgeous.

Then it was off to our favorite restaurant in Boothbay Harbor…. before their doors were shut due to the virus.  The decor is nothing to write home about, and the menu is smaller in winter….. but the food is still fabulous.

 

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As were the seasonal cocktails.

I started with a Ciderberry.

 

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And moved on to a few Sugar Plums made with this.

OMG!!

If you’ve never payed attention to any of my advice before?

Start now… and buy a bottle.

 

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It doesn’t matter if you’re not a fig fan. I actually hate the things.

But this was like nothing I’d ever tasted before. A very unique flavor. I read they also make a Golden Apricot ….. and I’ll be looking for that as well.

 

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Can’t remember what they called my appetizer but it was delicious, with just the right amount of spice.

Husband went with his usual French Onion soup and a light main dish of broiled haddock and asparagus.

 

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I, on the other hand….

 

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Dove into the richest, creamiest most delightful Parmesan risotto you’ll find this side of Italy. It’s one of their specialties and I can never resist…. paired here with pan seared scallops, mushrooms, arugula and a citrus balsamic glaze.

I don’t care how many pounds I gained…

It was worth it!

 

 

 

 

Spreading a little sunshine….

 

Which is definitely better than spreading the other thing that’s going around.

I stopped at the grocery store the other day to pick up some milk for our neighbor, a lovely senior lady whose family is out of town. She was nervous about going shopping and I was happy to help.

Along with the milk?

 

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I brought her a bouquet of flowers to add a little cheer to her self imposed quarantine.

We all need that nowadays.

 

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Got one for myself as well.

Wish I’d thought to arrange her batch before I delivered them…. they were exactly the same, but needed a little tweaking.

Oh well, they made her smile.

And that’s really all that matters.

 

Elizabethan Gardens… Manteo, Outer Banks North Carolina

 

Next up on our Outer Banks day trip? The Elizabethan Gardens in Manteo.

But first?

Some rocks…

 

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You’re welcome.

From Nags Head to Manteo?

 

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Scenery.

 

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Scenery from a bridge.

 

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More scenery.

How’s that for detailed description?

 

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The Gardens were recommended to us as a must stop… so we did. Even though it was off season and very little was blooming.

 

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Gardens without flowers? Let’s go!

 

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It was a pretty spot… with lots of different areas to explore.

 

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They were in the middle of their annual Christmas light show….

 

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So of course we went in the middle of the day when the sun was shining.

 

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There was an impressive set of gates.

 

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Neatly trimmed boxwoods…

 

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And Queen Elizabeth I.

 

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There were paths with balls…

 

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And paths with statues.

 

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And some extremely large butterflies.

 

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Funky Christmas lights were everywhere.

 

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And I’m sure it would have been quite pretty….

 

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Had we been there at night.

 

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Okaaaay.

Not sure what that was all about, but I don’t like peas either….. so, huzzah!

 

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There was a lonely ruin of something.

 

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And a man shivering in the cold wind.

Oh, wait. That’s the husband…. I didn’t recognize him from the front.

 

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There were fountains.

 

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And ass ends of statues.

 

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Surrounded by tightly trimmed bushes.

Stop snickering…. I know where your mind went.

 

 

There were creepy garden gnomes.

 

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And an indoor butterfly garden…

 

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With no butterflies.

 

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But plenty of fluffy gnomes.

 

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Garden path U turns…

 

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And yay!

Finally something was blooming.

 

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There were also the type of Christmas decorations you only see down south.

 

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Wouldn’t be much point of laying these on the ground up my way.

 

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But there was an impressive old tree.

 

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And yes, I do mean old.

 

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Now that’s a senior citizen!

 

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More paths…

 

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More decorations….

 

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A courtyard….

 

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A gift shop….

 

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And a fellow with a wilder hairdo than me after the windy pier.

 

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By this time we’d looped back around to the beginning.

But not before we learned a few things…

 

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About bees.

 

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In case you’re wondering, Maine’s state insect is also the honeybee. Although we designated it as such in 1975.

Long live the bee!

 

 

And plagiarism apparently.

Things I don’t like today… Part 4.

 

I don’t like….

Ordering flowers over the phone for a friend who just had surgery down in North Carolina. I wanted a large, impressive arrangement and was very specific with my request. I said….

No carnation fillers.

All pink and purple.

An interesting vase… definitely no clear glass.

So what did they deliver for $160?

 

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A clear glass vase, filled with carnations… and a few yellow roses and orange gerber daisies stuck in for no other reason than to piss me off.

$160 worth of everything I didn’t want!

 

 

I don’t like….

Ordering a pair of hard to find little batteries from Amazon that fit in an envelope.

 

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And having it come in a box.

 

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Talk about overkill.

 

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I don’t like…

Reading Maine native Stephen King’s latest,

 

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And realizing he’s lost his touch.

This new book? Meh…

Don’t bother.

 

I don’t like…

Buying a tin of Altoids to keep in my car,

 

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Getting them home and realizing…

 

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They’re slightly past their prime.

2009?

Damn. That’s worse than what I have in the back of my kitchen cabinet.

 

I don’t like….

My husband getting called into work on a weekend because,

 

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Some idiot doesn’t know how to steer his hot air balloon.

Oops!

Baby barn work continues.

 

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about my husband during our long and happy marriage, it’s that he doesn’t like to rush things.

Projects that should take a day, take a week. Projects that should take a week, take a month. Projects that should take a month, well… you get the idea. He’s been working on our big barn for what seems like forever and it’s still not finished.

 

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So our baby barn/shed needs to be torn down and rebuilt. Husband decided the frame of the building and the existing wood on the roof were sound, and is attempting to tear down the rotten parts and rebuild around them.

First off is the old shingles.

 

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There’s no real reason for this picture other than the fact I love to see a man sweeping.

It’s porn for women.

 

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But I digress…..

 

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Shingles off the front side, tar paper off the lower half.

 

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Section of roof off… so he can remove the section of wall below.

 

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It was at this point he decided to level the building.

 

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And that involved stomping all my flowers into the dirt, which made me….

 

 

And run for a trowel.

 

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Flowers dug up…

 

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Potted and moved to the relative safety of the big barn porch.

Of course by the time I’d turned around, he’d stolen bricks and edgers from my garden beds to raise the building.

 

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Which made me….

 

 

And run to gather them up before I was left borderless.

 

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One new section of wall in place, old section of roof replaced.

 

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If you’re wondering how long this operation took?

An entire 4 day holiday weekend.

Yes, 4 friggin’ days!

Reason being, my husband is the least organized man on earth and had none of the materials he needed when he started this project and kept having to run to the store… a half an hour away. He can also never find any of his tools and spends 20 minutes cursing and kicking things over looking for them until he gives up and asks me.

Of course he also had to get a haircut, have breakfast with the boys, hit a yard sale, drive an hour to complain to the man who painted his truck last year because it’s already starting to chip, visit his brother, sharpen the lawn mower blades, stop at the pub for a beer and wash his car. Did he have to do all that while trying to rebuild the baby barn?

No. He did not.

But now you see why weekend projects take months.

Fast forward to Monday afternoon. We lay out and cut tar paper…

 

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While a storm moves in.

 

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Have you ever tried to lay tar paper on a roof in the wind and rain?

 

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It’s not fun. Yours truly was on the other ladder and had to put  her phone inside so there aren’t any pictures of me soaking wet and wind blown…. laying across the paper as it was ripping off the roof in a deluge.

Good times.

 

not

 

At this rate, I think the project will be done by the time Elon Musk reaches Mars….

Or Richard Simmons stages a comeback.

 

 

Stay tuned.

 

 

 

 

I’m in love…. with a moth.

 

I know, it’s a little odd.

But if he was visiting your flowers? You’d love him too.

 

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Meet Herman.

 

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My hummingbird moth.

 

 

 

He’s been visiting everyday and I’m smitten.

 

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Herman is special, and not often seen in these parts.

 

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I know our love is doomed.

Interspecies relationships rarely work out….

 

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But for now, I’ll enjoy every moment we share.

 

 

 

 

 

Mystery solved.

 

Remember a while ago I posted a picture of the sunflower seeds the chipmunk from Hell had planted in my petunias… and how they were growing?

 

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Well over the past few weeks they grew tall and budded, and then started disappearing. One by one… shredded, stripped of leaves, and gone.

I’ve seen a few grasshoppers, so I thought maybe that was the reason.

 

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How pathetic is that?

One lone stalk remained.

Then I woke up this morning and saw….

 

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A woodchuck…

 

 

 

On the table.

 

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That’s something I hadn’t seen before.

 

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First there was a little pole dancing….

 

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Then he got down to business.

 

 

 

So now I know why there won’t be any blooming sunflowers this season.

 

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He made short work of it and left me this…

 

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As well as this…

 

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Yes, I could have yelled and scared him off, but I admit … I laughed instead.

We’ve had woodchucks all year and they haven’t touched a single plant, shrub or flower. Which if you’ve ever had woodchucks, you know is highly unusual.

So I let the little devil have the sunflower.

The fact that he can even get his fat butt up on the table to begin with is comical and worth the price of a sunflower to view.

 

 

As my garden grows…

 

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Day lilies.

 

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They’re vibrant…

 

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And colorful…

 

 

(Is it me… or is that mildly disturbing?)

 

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They’re prolific…

 

 

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Long lasting…

 

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(Well that explains why my refrigerator died. They wanted it to.)

 

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And easy to care for.

Plant… forget… and enjoy.

 

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The same goes for Hostas, although they prefer some shade.

Everything is in marvelous bloom right now.

 

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Except the sunflowers the chipmunk from Hell planted in my petunias.

 

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They may take a while.

 

 

Happy gardening!