Sunday, March 28, 2010

Definitely Spring!

It is definitely beginning to look like spring, even though it hasn't particularly felt like it. The temperature has dropped and it has been rainy and cold.

Although it was cold yesterday, the sky was a gorgeous blue. The maple trees are in bloom and the birds are beginning to nest.

I love to feed and watch the birds but it can be an expensive hobby. I try to be very budget conscious and I am always on the lookout for creative ways to enjoy my hobby without straining our tight budget. Last year I found two hanging baskets at a garage sale for .50¢ each. I bought them with the intention of using them for the birds. I pulled one of them out last week and filled it with grass cuttings and strands of yarn. I was so excited to see the little chickadees going to the basket and getting nesting materials, (notice the little chickadee in the picture on the lower right). The robins have also shown interest and are sitting in it. I'm really hoping that a robin will actually nest in it. They usually try to nest in my front door wreath so I'm thinking about hanging the other one on the front porch, (if it isn't too much of an eyesore).

I also bought the bird house at a garage sale last year. A sweet lady was getting ready to move and selling some of her belongings. Her husband had made several birdhouses before he passed away. The cute little chickadees have been checking out the box and taking some of the nesting material to it. I hope they move in!

Every spring I collect Lilly's hair when I brush her and put it in a small suet cage. Sometimes I just leave it on the ground. It's fun to watch the birds gather her shiny golden dog hair and use it for nesting material.

Speaking of garage sales and the front porch, I bought these two rocking chairs at a garage sale a couple of years ago. I only had room for one of them in the car but they insisted that I take both of them and gave me a great deal, $10.00 each. It was definitely worth making a trip back with my husband in the van to get them both. I scrubbed and cleaned them well and spray painted them. I found the two pretty pillows at Goodwill a few days ago, they were like brand new for $1.99 each. I need to get out there this week and give the porch a good cleaning and do a little more sprucing up for spring!

I'm linking up today with Mary, from the Little Red House for Mosaic Monday and Rhoda from Southern Hospitality for Today's Thrifty Treasures

Monday, March 22, 2010

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A Novel Idea Part Two

The Wedding

Wizard of Oz

Tom Sawyer

The Little House on the Prairie and Charlotte's Web

There were other gardens too and I hate to leave anyone out. The attention to detail and the work that goes into the theme gardens is incredible. I failed to get the names of some of the gardens but I have random pictures of those that I will probably post tomorrow or Monday along with some of my favorite flower pictures.

Friday, March 19, 2010

A Novel Idea

I had a wonderful time today at the Indiana Flower and Patio Show. The theme this year is, "A Novel Idea". My favorite garden was Robin Hood.

There was so much to see that it was difficult to take it all in.

The Bible is not a novel, but the Garden of Eden was a delightful surprise. I love the Scripture stone!

The combination fire and water features amaze me. Under The Tuscan Sun had a delightful outdoor kitchen . They had succulents in the containers

The Dr. Seuss garden was a little sparse in plant material compared to the other gardens, but it was very cute. Notice the boy fishing with gummy worms.

The Hobbit.

Hopefully tomorrow I will have time to do part two of the Indy Flower and Patio Show.

What a Difference a Day Makes!

On Tuesday when I walked around the yard there was just a little bit of green peeking from the ground in the area were these miniature irises are planted.

I was busy all day Wednesday and didn't go into the back yard. When I went outside Thursday morning to fill the bird feeders I was shocked to see all of these in bloom. I only had one blooming in another part of the yard on Tuesday when I posted for Garden Blogger Bloom Day.

Thursday was another gorgeous spring day with temperature reaching about 65. While I'm definitely enjoying the warm temperatures, I hope it won't freeze again and damage the tender growth that is emerging.

We have a chance for snow flurries this weekend, so I'm a little concerned. We have a long time till the last frost date. I'd certainly be OK if spring wants to come early this year!

Today the high is supposed to be 70°!

Look what else opened up on Thursday! I love spring!

I wasn't planning on attending the Flower and Patio show this year, but a friend invited me to go with her! We'll be there today!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Shy Lilly

Lilly has enjoyed the warmer weather and is so glad to be taking walks again, (me too)!

She gets very nervous when I aim my camera at her and she refuses to cooperate.

She is my faithful garden companion. She is usually a very good girl and lays close by while I'm gardening. However she was very naughty Monday and chased a cat across the street, refusing to listen to me or come when I called her. I guess I have some obedience training to do before unleashing her. I think she forgot how to behave outside.

A few weeks ago I saw the male blue jay feed the female, actually it was more like she took it from the very reluctant male. This morning I saw a male cardinal feeding the female. It was so sweet. I hate that I wasn't able to get a picture of it. The birds are singing and looking for nesting locations. I hope I have occupants in my bird houses this year!

I plan to get some more cleaning up done in the yard today, the temperatures will be dropping again for a few days and there is even a chance of snow.

For those of you who are interested in bird watching, here is a link to a barn owl that is nesting. The babies should be hatching any time now. This is fascinating to watch and kind of gross when they eat.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Garden Blogger Bloom Day

It was a gorgeous day with the most amazing blue sky! I enjoyed finally being able to spend some time cleaning up in the garden. It was wonderful to look around and see all of the spring growth emerging!

I was so surprised to see an iris today. It is amazing how quickly they can pop up when the temperature warms up and we actually get a little sunshine.

My only blooms so far are crocus and one lone iris, but it won't be long and I'll have daffodils. I'm already seeing flower buds!

I'm a day late, (oops it's already after midnight, so that makes it two days late), but I'm linking up to Garden Blogger Bloom Day, hosted by Carol, from May Dreams Gardens.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Spring has Sprung

Today was a gorgeous day, the temperature reached almost 60°! I went for a long walk with my daughter and a short walk with Lilly! It felt wonderful to finally be outside and get a little exercise again. Lilly was glad to be out walking again too!

I had walked around the house on Saturday to see if I had a crocus in bloom, and didn't find anything. I was pleasantly surprised today when I saw one in bloom!

I pulled a few weeds, and thought about cleaning up in the flower beds a little. I didn't get around to it because I sat on the patio just basking in the warmth and enjoying the moment.

It will probably be raining for the next few days, but at least we had a respite from the cold, and now we know that spring is very, very close because we got a wonderful taste of it today.

One lone flower, but a wonderful harbinger of spring.

Libby has enjoyed the wheat grass that I planted for her.

My sweet mother-in-law is in the final stages of Alzheimer's. Last month when they weighed her she weighed only 77 pounds. I'm pretty sure she weighs less than that now. It is heartbreaking to watch her slowly waste away.

I didn't do much winter sowing this year because I didn't want to baby plants all winter and then have to abandon them while taking care of Mom in her last days. We know that it is just a matter of time before she passes away. In fact we are simply amazed at her strength and will to live. I planted so many seeds last year only to have most of them die while I was in Alabama caring for my dad during his lung cancer surgery. I just didn't have the heart to have that happen again.

I do have a few things planted using my indoor growing system. I have Purple Wave petunias, penstemon, parsley and cilantro. The only seeds I have bought this year, so far, are zinnias and sunflowers. The rest of the seeds were collected from my flowers last fall. I should still have plenty of flowers...

because I have a bag full of these orange cosmos seeds. I won't mind at all filling my flower garden with these sweet beauties. I love the way they look with the Verbena Bonariensis.