Sunday, August 21, 2011

Green Thumb Sunday

Daisey on the patio wondering what I am doing
What's left of my succulent garden after two years in what turned out to be a bad spot for succulents. My beautiful big jade tree did not survive the winter.

I've moved my succulents to the screen porch, and the orchids out to the key lime tree, so that I can better control how much water they receive.

This pot is actuallty broken but i like it so much that I am going to plant some string of pearls in it anyway. When my succulents were outside, something kept digging them out of this pot.

Orchids in key lime tree

My "pot" garden ;)

My backyard is a series of border gardens really.

The jasmine arbor freshly cut back.

Another bromeliad border.

Why is Blogspot adding these crazy spacings between my photos? I go to keep going back and deleteing the space but it never leaves it as I set it.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Miniature Golf

Last night I played putt putt golf with the cousins. It started out really nice but as the course progressed, we lost the breeze and it was HOT and humid. I had fun, and the grounds were lovely, but I was glad when we finished and went to feed the gators where there was a breeze.

A photo of the grounds. It was so sunny that most of my photos of the landscaping didn't turn out well.

Cousin Erica teeing off at hole 1.

This poor guy - you gotta watch out for the quicksand.

Cousin Lea shoting through the cave.

Lee and Don - too bad the one with them smiling didn't turn out because they both have beautiful smiles :-)

Don, a.k.a. "Pops", with Sarah.

Amaizing what little girls do when their mother's back is turned, lol.

When we finished golf Sarah wanted to feed the gators - a real Florida girl!

Turns out that feeding the gators is dangling a piece of hot dog on something resembling a fishingpole.

They have all kinds of fencing to keep the gators away from the people, or, is it the people away from the gators?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Pirate Cruise

Today we celebrated my cousin Sarah's 6th birthday - it started with a pirate cruise from Clearwater Beach and ended at Erica's house for cupcakes and ice cream. I highly recommend this type of activity to anyone who want their kids to have loads of fun. The crew was fantastic and kept the kids very busy and entertained for two hours. They also made sure everyone stayed hydrated in the heat and sun by having water, soft drinks, and beer & wine easily available.

I went with Sarah, of course, her mother Erica, her grandmother Lea, and her Aunt Sonya (They are all my cousins) and Sarah's neighbor friend Gracey and her big brother Noah. Noah whipped me at Wii, by the way :(

There were many activities including water gun fights, a treasure hunt, face painting, pirate stories, musical chairs, and a dance party. The kids got beads, pirate hats, and "gold" coins. The music was awesome and really added to the festive feel. We departed with Reggea, and then songs matched the activities, and the dance party was a lot of disco - you just couldn't help tapping your foot or swaying your hips.

They also have special birthday parties where they provide Pirate cupcakes and dress up the birthday family in pirate costumes. I believe it was a good value with lots of entertainment for the dollar. The kids stayed engaged the entire trip. Highly recommend.

By the way, they asked me where they could see "real" pirates and I told them off the coast of Somalia ;)

Sunday, August 7, 2011


My cousins from New Orleans are here again. We got together with them a couple years ago when they were bringing the oldest daughter to college in Tampa. She's a senior this year and they were here to help her furnish and get settled in an apartment.

It was fun reminiscing about New Orleans and interesting to hear of the progress post Katrina. All three homes were destroyed by the storm but everyone is in a new house and impressed by some of the progress made. Granted, there are still areas that haven't been rebuilt but from what I heard the rebuilding was an opportunity to update and improve.

My cousins were talking about City Park and how, because of Katrina, many people and organizations supported upgrades to the park as well as restoration and replanting of the old oaks. This probably would not have happened without the storm, or if so, would be slower.

Of the three schools I attended while living there (St. Anthony, St. Leo the Great, and Sherwood Forrest) only Sherwood Forrest remains closed. My cousin's estimate is 80% is rebuilt and bragged about the number of unique restaurants and shops that have appeared in the rebuild.

I'm excited to go visit - it's been a very long time. Jerry's never been. I think he will have a blast.

(Photo is my cousin Bill's wife Thania on the right; her daughter, who is my first cousin once removed, Denise, in the center; her husband Chris on the left. The twins are Margarette and Luke and the little guy is Calib - my first cousins twice removed.)

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...