Sunday, September 28, 2008

Green Thumb Sunday

No photo today. Instead, I pose a question to gardeners. As you can see from a previous post this week, I have a fence strip where I have planted bromeliads with mixed success. I realize now that some areas of the fence strip get sun for a good portion of the day and it is that beating down hard sun in that area. Other plants in this same strip are in deep shade. The rest of the strip is all combinations available between too much light and too dark depending on the plant overhang and shadows crated by neighbors plants. Plus, anytime someone trims it can impact the light value of this area dramatically.

My question is this: Can anyone suggest a plant that is similar to bromeliads in shape and form (can even be taller) that withstands a myriad of light situations? I am looking for something to plant within the bromeliads that will A)fill in the blank spots, and b) possibly provide some cover for bromeliads. It's a narrow strip so the plants can't get any wider than say a foot and half at complete maturing. Height is not a big deal although some plants I have tried there (such as a shrimp plant) tend to hang over and get wide as they get tall. This strip is between a fence and a walkway that is used so I can't have anything impedeing traffic. When I say similar to the form of a brom, I guess I mean that "fountain" appearance.

The other side of the strip has been a delight to plant. It's mostly shade with late afternoon sun and I grow zanadu, bromeliads, peace lily, and anthrium (although they can die back if it gets too cold). I also have pots of orchids suspended in that area. It would be nice if there was some continuity to the two sides but I have never achieved this because of the difference in the growing environment. I hoped the broms would do that for me.

So, fellow garden bloggers, I have handed you a task. Are you up to it? Can you help me? More importantly, can you help my bromeliads? LOL Oh, and I did buy broms that are supposed to take sun but I guess they were not counting on the Florida sun!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

12 Year Old Neighborhood Girl Went Missing

Tonight we had Marge's 87th birthday celebration but more about that tomorrow.

When we arrived home there were two Sheriff cars in front of a neighbor's house, there were several neighbors gathered around, and I saw cops walking around with flashlights. When they left, and the neighbors were still out, I went over and asked what was going on. It may sound nosey but to someone who walks her dogs at night, I thought it was important enough to risk the embarrassment of being told to mind my own business. Anyway, this woman was distraught and said her granddaughter was missing.

She explained that her granddaughter was riding her bike in front of the house and the girl came in and told her that the neighbor boy was walking and said she was going to ride with him while he walked. Grandma was doing laundry and said OK even though it ws 8pm because the girl never leaves the area. Thirty minutes later she doesn't see her (our neighborhood is a H-shape with the top two legs of the H being dead end culdesacs so there is only one way in and out. It's a great walking neighborhood and you can see kids riding bikes, people jogging or walking, and dog walkers up until about midnight). There are sidwalks, street lights, and a lighted gazebo if you want to catch your breath.

Anyway, I asked the woman if she would show me a photo of the girl and we went in the house and I learned that they had tried the house next door where the boy lives with no answer. She said they and the police pounded on it and looked in windows. The telephone number was also no good (you know how people are disconnecting landlines and the police had no access to a cell#) and there was a "strange" car in front of the house all day.

After getting a look at the girl's photo I went home, told Jerry to get dressed, and we harnessed up the Rat Terriers who leave no stone unturned - if there was someone hiding in the bushes they would know. We grabbed our flashlights and went looking for Halley. Luckily when we got back to their house the boy's mom had returned, called her mother's house because she lives in a nearby neighborhood, and the kid's were both there. Whew! I was very happy for the family because things could have ended differently.

I gotta go make airline reservations for vacation next month and my computer is having a problem so I will either have to fix it or load photo software onto this one (my dad's) to download the photos from tonight. See ya tomorrow!


Friday, September 26, 2008

A Meme For Couples

I copied this from Julie's Blog "A Succulent Life" because she wanted to read the answers of her readers. She got it from My Little Box of Things and Stuff. If you repost, tell who you are answering about. For me, it is my husband Jerry. I've included a photo for reference.

How long have you been together? We were married 21 years, 9 months, and 10 days ago but who's counting, LOL.

Who eats more? He eats more at one sitting, I eat more often.

Who said I love you first? He did.

Who is taller? He's about 5 inches taller than me.

Who sings better? Me, but he's not bad either. Neither of us are soloists!

Who is smarter? I dunno - he says I am, I say he is.

Who does the laundry? Mostly him.

Who does the dishes? Him again.

Who pays the bills? Yea! Finally something I do.

Who mows the lawn? He mows but I do rest of yardwork.

Who cooks dinner? Professionals mostly, LOL. If we cook at home it's me.

Who drives when you are together? Depends, but more often him. If there is alcohol I am the DD.

Who is more stubborn? We are both only children but I might be a little more.

Whose parents do you see the most? Both moms live nearby but mine drives so I say my mom.

Who kissed who first? I believe he kissed me first or it was both at same time. Gosh I don't remember.

Who proposed? Me, I did. That I remember very well.

Who is more sensitive? Humm... not sure.

Who has more friends? I do.

Who has more siblings? We are both only children but I have step siblings.

Who wears the pants in the family? We tore those pants up a LONG time ago!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Garden Shots

This is the Key Lime tree where I hang some of my orchids. Do you know how many orchids are hanging in this tree? Ther is also a Staghorn Fern inthe tree.

Here is a photo of a happy bromeliad!

Here is a photo of a very unhappy one.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Halloween Dotee on

I received my Haloween Dotee today! I sent off the one I made on Monday and the person who received it loved it too. This one is scary - mine was kinda funny scary. Click here to see the one I made and sent.

When I first opened the squishy envelope these ants started to fall out and my first reaciton was to drop the envelope. Too funny.
She sent extra skull beads and some Halloween stickers.
Very positive experience. I would do it again. In fact, I've already signed up for the snowman Dotee.
If anyone is interested in an easy, fast, and inexpensive way to express your creativity, the Dotee doll is for you!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Gumby & Pokey

I came across these toys one day while waiting for a table at Cracker Barrell restaurant. Just as the merchandisers intended, they took me back to childhood and I just HAD to purchase them for my desk at work. Really, I was "owed" them in a sense. Here's the story.....

When I was a young girl I wasn't terribly fond of regular plastic dolls. I preferred products like Raggedy Ann (my fav), Gumby & Pokey, and those trolls with the long hair. This is partially because, and I haven't shared this story with many people, is that a neighbor girl told me (when I was 4 or 5) that when you die they put you into a liquid that shrinks you and that's where dolls come from - shrunken deceased people. I remember putting dolls away in the closet at night because she had me thinking they could wake up. How's that for trauma! I ended up giving her a doll of mine that she really liked and that was probably the motivation for her story.

I did trust Barbie, sorta, because we all know she's not to scale with a real human body, LOL. Actually, I didn't get a Barbie for a while later and I wasn't as freaked out by then. But on to Gumby & Pokey. One Christmas while we were living in New Orleans I got G&P as a gift and was very fond of them. So fond, in fact, that when we went on a camping trip to Pensecola Florida I took them with me. I don't recall who all went on the trip but I do remember two things - the tent leaked and it rained and there was a nasty boy in our group who torchured me. He figured out I was fond of my G&P and he threw them in the campfire! Some adult helped me to fish them out but Pokey was a total loss. Gumby, being bigger, was charred but still maintained some green and shape. Unfortunetly he was soft and we set him down because he was hot and dirty, and when I picked him up his feet stuck and as I pulled it created these long, wierd, pointed feet - not that Gumby's feet aren't wierd already. Anyway, it ruined the toy for play because he couldn't stand and he made your hands dirty.

I guess my relationship with Gumy & Pokey did not achieve the natural closure a child has with her toys and perhaps that is why they still capture my attention when I see them. One time I even had a miniature set of them that I put on my Christmas tree! In doing this post I Googled G&P to ensure that I am spelling it correctly and discovered a Gumbyworld website and Gumby the movie! I am going to go check it out when I finish publishing this post. And for those of you who also have a pair of these bendables buddies, keep away from fire!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Anxious For The News

I am sick of political and financial news - I am ready to hear news of the Ratbone Rescues raffle drawing instead! And a special "good luck" to the folks who bought tickets after seeing my blog - thank you for your support!

**UPDATE** And the winners are:
Harry Campbell - quilt and pillows
Marilyn Young - wall hanging

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Fall Colors Inside

I did my fall decorating yesterday. In about another month I will add some Halloween pieces indoors and out. When I remove those I will add a few Thanksgiving items. I guess I do fall in stages. I love fall, and other than Christmas, it's the only season I guess I decorate much for anymore (aside from front door wreath changes).

This photo is making my front doors look really drab and they aren't. At least I don't think they are! This is my little front door vignette with wreaths, scarecrow, bale of hay, basket of fake veggies and dried corn, a felt black cat, and a wooden Jack o'lantern. Oh and a fall welcome mat, of course.

I went back and forth on which table cover to put on the coffee table and choose the bright one for now and after halloween will switch to the one I really like. When you burn a candle in this holder you can see the fall colored glass.

A lousy shot of my mantle done by a lousy photographer (me). Fall leaf garland with bits of fall decorations.

The fall quilt over the chaise lounge and a fall quilted wallhanging on the dining room wall - yes, I still have those paint samples on the wall.

The fireplace seperates the living room and dining room. On the backside of the fireplace stack I hung my broom with a crow-witch.

On top of the display cabinet/bookshelf (where I keep my hull). I need some candles for the holders.

Dining room table. I see from the photo I really need to lower those curtains - the rod is too high. The only tapers I had in the house are those metallic gold swirled tapers because I am afraid to burn them, LOL.

This was my fall wreath from Kodiak (notice it's getting worn) but I have it inside on the door from the entry way to the garage (the door I locked myself out of this morning in my night gown).

Just a little fall color in the guest bathroom. A pumpkin candle holder and a couple leaves added to the candles that are always there. And, wierd as it may seem, am trying out a fall garland on top of the shower. Hard to get it to stay but I had one leftover so am giving it a try. Hard to turn a palm tree room into fall!

Now I couldn't leave the dogs out so here's photos of them eating their brekfast this morning - Daisey wearing her Indian corn scarf and Eddie wearing fall leaves. Click on any photo to enlarge.

I spent hours going through our garage yesterday looking for my fall wreaths. I couldn't figure out what hte heck happened. After talking to Jerr I realized they could be anywhere because he did a clean up job which means he stuffed stuff into whatever was closest and put boxes and totes away in random order. My Christmas totes had non-Christmas, etc. Finally I found a small box that was taped shut and nothing written on it. They had to be in there because I had opened everything else. The box was stuffed with wreaths! I usually hang them on wire clothes hangers bent up at the edges (two to a hanger) above the freezer but I couldn't reach due to junk in front of freezer so he got ahold of them and circumvented my organizaitonal plans. This wreath hanging technique is a good tip by the way! You may have to turn the hanger part 90 degrees depending on how you are going to hang them.

Green Thumb Sunday - Fall Colors

OK, so it is still summer here but since it is ofically fall I went outside this morning and took photos of plants with fall colors. It's overcast so it kinda looks like fall if you use your imagination and turn the AC way up! (Click on photos to enlarge a bit)

I forget the name of this shrub. I planted it last year in the spring after Conan the Landscaper clear cut me. I thought it was going to be a mid-height shrub from reading the instructions on the pot but it is way big and that's with a couple prunings. Hummingbirds like it so it stays.

Although I take the risk of making northern gardeners groan when I say this, I can always depend on the orchids for a bloom. This vanda is a bright orange.

My mystery plant. When I boughtit I thought it was in the cacti/succulnet family because that is where the lady hadit placed on her table but now I am thinking it acts more like a bromeliad and Isaw a brom page on the internet with a plant lookinging exactly the same. Beautiful color if it doesn't get too much sun - and it jumps back quickly when moved to lesser sun.

One lone Hibicus but in a beautiful fall color.

And finally bouganvilla, apricot is close enough to orange for a Florida gardener!

Saturday, September 20, 2008


I had a great night's sleep last night. I believe I was in bed by 11 and slept until 7:30 this morning. Seems on too many weekends I stay up late and then wake up early and I am tired all day - not today! And look what I saw in the pond this morning....

Wood Stocks! They aren't rare in Florida but I don't seem them in the pond very often. Usually it's ibis, ducks, roseate spoonbills, and a variety of herons.

Below is a photo of me just before I went ot bed last night. I was thinking how thanksful I am to Sarah Palin for popularizing the up-do, because I love to wear my hair up, and for wearing glasses - which I do most of the time. Thanks for making my status quo fashionable!
So I had to clean up a mess at my sewing/craft table because Annie had some sort of cat fit and knocked everything over. I took the opportunity to go through my drawers and shelves and reorganize EVERYTHING and throw out projects I have carried around for years and never completed. I considered if there was a web site where someone else might want them but I was in the "mood" then and afraid that waiting would prevent me from purging.

Then I put out my fall decorations. It doesn't feel like fall here in central Florida but my heart says time to change the wreaths on the front door and drag out my leaf garlands, fabric pumpkins, scarecrow, bale of hay, black cats, etc. Abut a week before Halloween I will add some scary stuff and then remove that and add my Thanksgiving. I guess I actually have 3 stages of fall decorations. Can you believe I am even talking about Thanksgiving?!?!?!

Went to dinner at Sam Seltzer' tonight with the moms. Filet mignon and steamed veggies - yummy. Tonight I might sew in my newly organized work station but for now I am just admiring it in all it's clean and organized glory! I even cleaned all my Omnigrid rulers. I don't believe I've ever done that before, LOL. In an hour it will be time to listen to my radio program "This American Life" - I hope it is not a rerun again this week, or at least that it is not one I have already heard. Oh well, I do have a book................

Friday, September 19, 2008

Struttin Down Central

Yesterday I walked down Central Ave for lunch and took a few photos on my way back to the office.

There's someone who does chalk work on the sidewalks and yesterday he did a couple simple hearts. Sometimes it's bible versus and sometimes it's elaborate pictures. I always sonder what compels a person to do sidwalk chalk art in such a busy pedestrian area.

These red patio sets caught my attention - especially since last week they were black!. I have the same set rusting on my patio. The red really added some color to my stroll.

Graffi can be found just about anywhere these days. This was on the side of a newspaper stand. Again, is this urban art and what motivates one to do a public display? Or, is it vandalism? Perhaps something in between.

The awning that says Utility Accounts leads into the lobby of the City where you pay your wter bill. I work in the same department, just not at this entrance any more.

ANd finally, there are four of these very tall bird sculptures but I've had a tough time shooting them. Hard to believe someone stole one once because they are tall and appear to be very heavy.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Way Back Wednesday

This is a photo of me from the summer or fall of 1976 when I was 18. It's black and white because it was used in the newspaper as an engagement announcement. Notice the braces! I didn't want to get married with braces so I was married in January 1977 (at age 19) following the December removal of braces.

Notice I also had Farrah Facett hair. The only makeup I wore back then was eye makeup. At this time in my life I loved denim, Saturday Night Live and a little chihuahua puppy named Moon Unit (a.k.a. Mooney). I used to carry a large purse and sneak him in everywhere I could.

Maybe next Wednesday I'll post some post-braces wedding photos. I still have them around here somewhere even though we divorced after 9 years. They are still my memories so I keep them. Does that sound wierd to anyone?

Monday, September 15, 2008

Made It Myself Monday

I now have all 8 vests sewn together but had to stop for more supplies. I should have them completed, velcro and all, by the end of the week. And, with timely similarity, I happened to find a bag of fabric I purchased a year ago last October when I first made dog harness/vests. So now I have some Halloween, chili peppers, Americana, and a few more designs for making more! We'll see - I may just get sick of them and put them aside for another two years!

I've had this dog fabric awhile having brought it from Kodiak I believe. Never found the right use for it but this is perfect, don't ya think? The wine fabric is a very nice fabric- beautiful colors, a nice hand, and great to work with.

These are my last two of this group. Six are oging to an online friend for a fundraiser and I guess I will list the last two in my new Etsy store. Wish me luck for the motivation to continue with at least a few more because I've made another committment, LOL.

Oh! I almost forgot. We had a little nail clipping accident last night that got pretty scary. It took us over a half hour to get Daisey's nail to stop bleeding. I was a little freaked out. Jerry and I worked on her with one of those stick things for when you cut yourself shaving. I held her in my arms, rubbed her belly and whispered quietly to her to keep her calm while he worked the paw. She was falling asleep through the ordeal! Then it hit me that perhaps she was passing out or weak from the loss of blood! She is so my baby and I worry about her needlessly. At one point I thought of going out at 10pm at night to get her a steak to avoid anemia. I even went as far as to figure out that I could one at the Super Target or order from Sam Seltzer's Steakhouse which isn't far from my house. I was thinking of ordering a big Porterhouse, extra rare, to go. I'm a nervous mommy I guess.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

I Love This Skit (you do have to wait for the short ad to run first)

I know someone who knows Tina Fay and the day it was announced that Sarah Palin would be John McCain's running mate, the first thing I did was call her and see if she knew that Tina and Sarah looked alot alike (I lived in Alaska 15 years and had seen the Gov's photo). I've been waiting for a skit like this to show up on SNL. I bet there will be more to come, especially if John McCain is elected, because Tina Fay nailed it!

I was a Hillary supporter and even I thought it was hysterical. Amy Pohler did a great job as an angry Hillary. Is she pregnant? Amy P not Hillary.

Green Thumb Sunday

In case anyone was worried about my Eddie after the humiliating Rooster photo incident, don't be - he is alive and well as proved by these photos taken today. No rat terriers were harmed during said photo session.

I decided to do only screen porch garden photos today. Here is the view from sliding door in the kitchen and taken while I was working at my sewing machine. The dogs typically stay around me but to Eddie being in the screen porch alone is OK when he can see me through the glass door. In this photo he is enjoying his favorite pastime of lizard hunting. He's in my Cats and Dens.

The little corner area where Ed has turned over and broke many a pot. I call it my shard corner, LOL. Jerry calls it a mosquito breeding ground because the water stands after watering.

This corner of my screen porch is for orchids that prefer a shadier, perhaps even cooler, climate. Notice how they look unhappy - it is hot!

Eduardo sees something but it is up high on the screen. He will wait forever for it to come closer and usually accompanied by a sound track that only a rattie can perform.

Even a hunter likes the comforts of home so he moves his surveillance to a more comfortable post. Our screen porch is filled with orchids, a table 4 chairs and stero for humans, and a dog bed & blankie for the furkids.

My Eddie Ratbone As A Rooster

No text needed.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

This One Is For Julie

Julie, I no longer have a computer with Photo Shop on it (I had a small version at one time) but there is Photoshop Express available online for free. It also stores photos for you and is easy to use.

Here's your Dozey turned into a sketch and pink. She looked awful in green! Who knew? LOL She actually looked best in a color between purple and pink

I Didn't Get Dressed Today

Before you think of me as a lazy slob today, I'll show you what I did instead. I was just too busy to get dressed! By the time I took a break, it was almost time to get my jammies on again.

I constructed 4 dog vests today. I still need to addt he velcro closures but am waiting until I have all the vests done so that I can place the velcro to create different sizes. The top two vests are smaller and made from a beatiful fish print (I wish you could see the real color) and one of a pasta fabric. I thought novelty fabric would be eye catching at the fund raiser.
The next two are black backgrounds - one with golf equipment and one with Jelly Bellys. How fun is that? Black background, black thread, and black velcro makes for a challenge at times. I have 3 or 4 more vests to do. I will show them later. (I made more than needed for the fundraiser so she could choose the best ones).

Then, when I got my fill of sewing, I started the photo editing and transfer for future quilt blocks. The one above is my Daisey. She's so sweet!

This is a dog being publicized through Ratbone. His name is Smokey. I thought he was quite handsome.

Finally this is Teddy. How sweet is that face? Poor fella probably didn't expect to find himself homeless.

Neighborhood Muscovy

Broke Wing So, back in March a mama Muscovy showed up with 14 ducklings in the pond across the street. These ponds are retention pond...