Saturday, April 24, 2010

We are fine...wanna buy our junk?

At 7 am we were up and ready for business. Not as big of a yard sale as it could have been. Carloads of items have been donated to the charity thrift shop over the past year.

It was always just too cold or too hot or there were too many other projects to wrangle before. A yard sale was just too much work to consider.

Plus at this point in our lives it is hard to decide if a donation tax credit or cold hard cash is the best option.

The sale is in hour three as I write this and we've made about $150 and more importantly, got to meet a few more neighbors as well.

Isn't that really the point of these kinds of events anyway?

Our pilot neighbor popped by around 9 with his newborn and 15 month old daughters snuggled bundled into the most high tech stroller I have ever seen. Krauss the dog rounded out the party; the four of them were heading to the bagel shop for coffee and morning treat.

Gotta love a neighbor who will make a bagel with strawberry schmear run for you while you wait!

His only request: Wrap up the yard sale before his wife returned from doing surgery. He didn't want to give her any ideas about have a yard sale of their own!

So we are having a beautiful sunny morning with this view over our house....
Framed by flowering trees.
And another sweeping view of snow capped mountains is just down the street.
What is not to like???
(The brownish area at the base of those mountains is a working copper mine. Tours are available; stay tuned for a blog report from there soon!)

Um...what's with the towel on the bush?

Drier on the fritz?

Or did it just not want to be displayed with the rest of the sale items?

No; in addition to having a yard sale, we are also participating in our Community Emergency Preparedness drill.

Salt Lake City is one of the best cities in America in terms of disaster preparedness.

A major earthquake fault line snakes along the moutain range base. Up the road a ways is Idaho and Wyoming, both of which cover super volcano locations.

Add in the possibility of any kind of chemical or weather or terrorist event and suddenly a yearly drill sounds like a good idea.

Everyone gets a flyer like this one with helpful pictures to aid in emergency utility shut off procedures.
I wouldn't have a clue how to do these sort of things unless I had directions like these.
And then, just to keep you thinking, they also include a series of questions to consider.
I admit I need to get it in gear and take care of a few of these items still.
The most interesting one to me is number 19.
While the LDS population of SLC is around 40% now, neighborhoods are still gridded via LDS church wards.
Each neighborhood within the ward has at least one designated "home teacher" who checks in on each church member at least once a month.
In the event of an emergency, the home teacher can be counted on to direct resources to those in need.
I admire that each church member is encouraged to have enough emergency supplies for their own family, and then some more to share with the unprepared.
In fact I think that thinking is so wise that we are adopting it for ourselves.
Seems like just a reasonable thing to do.
Update: The garage sale is through. We sold 90% of our stuff!
$170 for sitting in the driveway and chatting with folks who hauled our stuff away while Bernie worked on shaping his new bonsai tree.
The day is young; we have more adventures on the horizon.
These adventures involve tiptoeing.
Can you guess where we are headed to next?

Friday, April 23, 2010

Drifts on the ground, in the sky, and my drifting mind

No, the Cat in the hat did not come by to make the snow turn pink.
The pink "snow" on the grass....
is a welcomed sight here!
Confetti from God as He celebrated His latest edition of His Season of Spring.
It was Earth Day when I took these pictures.
Plenty of people shuffled by on the sidewalk next to the lovely bits.
There were rallies and speeches and exhortations to "save the planet"....
And all I could see and think was how Spring came again regardless of what man was doing.
Overhead the flowering plum tree rained down petals until all that remained was deep burgundy colored new leaves on the branches that had been bare since autumn.

The bare flowerbed beside the plum had colors that a human would deem to be clashing with the delicate pinks and purple output of the tree.

What do tulips and daffodils care of color scheme?

Each blossom lights up with pride at the touch of sunshine beam glowing through their transparent petals.

Back home: Bunny is happy.

VERY happy, and more so with each sunny day.

The lettuce patch is growing at a wonderful pace!

By the doorway of our busy neighbors a huge forsythia bush blooms with wild enthusiasm for the new season.
The neighbors do nothing to husband its growth; it passes through its seasonal phases without any assistance from them.
Amazing, isn't it?

On Monday it was 85 degrees F. when I was driving home from work.

Wednesday we awoke to snow flying horizonally across our bedroom window view.

Thursday it rained and then the storm broke up into atmospheric ships that sailed across the amazingly blue sky.

Bernie and I went to the garden center together and admired the rapidly building plant selection. The employees are helpful; they warn against planting outside just yet. We take note of their advice, and will hold off on major planting until May.

I couldn't pass on one little purchase.
Our dear patient garden bunny needs a new treat!
My fly fisherman is storing his skis, switching out the snow tires, and dreaming of angling outing to come.
It is too soon to fish the snow melt swollen streams just yet; the "catch" today will be limited to Flashy Trout Back lettuce for now.
(Collecting lettuce varieties could get very addictive!)
It rained and rained and rained all day today.
I reclined on the couch before the fireplace and watched drifting foggy shreds sprinkle snow upon the hillsides around us.
Oh was it ever hard to get motivate to do more than watch and enjoy the fast moving storm.
Tomorow we hope for sun.
It will be Saturday, we will have a garage sale.
I hope all our stuff will be gone in a blink.
In any case, we will wrap it up by noon and then plan to be out and about exploring and enjoying our area.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Fine Feathered Friends

A bit of web surfing from link to link landed me on a site that confirmed that once again I was way ahead of fashion.

For the past ten years I have mentioned to one and all who would listen that I fancy bird names as baby names.

Perhaps it was because I went to school with a Lark, Larkie, Robin and a Piper, all of whom were very cool chicks.

Currently the name Piper is coming in at #55 out of 100 of the top girl names so far for 2010.
Phoebe is #70, Wren is #73.

Celebs have really being leading the charge on this trend though, as reported on HERE:

Did an incipient trend for bird names inspire Nicole Richie and Joel Madden to name their newborn son Sparrow, or was it the other way around? No matter. Bird names are the latest genre of nature names, now that the gardens of flower names have become overgrown.

Up and coming avian names: Lark, Wren, Hawk, Dove, Anything but the dated Robin. Then there’s also the genetic Birdie, daughter of Maura West.

As such newsy tidbits tend to do, I immediately began thinking of other sorts of bird names.
Before long I was dug in on the subject and produced my own list of "Bird Names For Babies" as follows.

(Names not suitable for first name would be fabulous middle names or nicknames, IMHO.)


Cassowary (definitely a good nickname for Cassandra. I love Cassowaries in real life!)
Cotinga ("Lovely Cotiga" is one of the Cotinga types.)
Lory (wouldn't those three "L" names be great for triplet girls?)
Quail (or Quayle?)

Boys names:

Bat (Bat Masterson: the cowboy. Good nickname name as his was. A mammal but whatever.)
Coot (Another great nickname!)
Hob ( name for a male swan, females are called a pen.)

BTW, my mom had an uncle whose nickname was Chick. I seem to recall a few old time famous men going by that handle.

Well, there's my list, take it or leave it; there are no babies underway with anyone that I would hold the slightest hope of influencing anyway.
On the other hand...consider studying up on the list, then challenging someone to a pick-up game of Scrabble armed with these names.
Need proof that these names are real? See HERE.
You can even click on the name links to see pictures of the birds, if you need to reassure yourself that the bird is actually nice looking.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Tiggie's Turn

Tiggie here doing the blogging today.

Jill's been off looking at some other garden and I just don't get it.

My garden is GREAT.

Here, l'll show you around.

The Violets are blooming in the shady parts of the yard.
And these little bitty things.

The woofie that lives across the creek is out all the time now.

Hart likes to climb up in the tree that hangs over into the dog's yard.

The dog barks, Hart puffs up real big, and so it goes.

I don't really get why Hart does it.

Sometimes I think Hart is a little weird.

Remember last fall when Bernie and I planted a whole bunch of flower bulbs?

They have bloomed now.

I guess that about covers it.

It is supposed to rain here a whole bunch today.
Bernie says that will be good for the garden but not so good for me if I stay outside.

I think I had better run now. Thanks for visiting.


PS from Jill: Saw this on the car ahead of me at a stop light the other day.

Thought of you Laura.

Saw another plate holder that said "Blonds only dream about what Redhead do!"

Hope you are having a good day.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Red Butte part 2: The Rest of the Flowers

There was plenty of other floral beauty blooming beside the daffodils at Red Butte

The mountain views surrounding the garden were gorgeous as well.
Sometimes it was hard to decide where to look!

Ruffled pansies: I think I first saw the ruffled variety just about five years ago.

Wonder what the pansy breeders will think to do next.

A wild flower that I should know the name of.

I must brush up on my wild flower identification skills before summer arrives.

Families enjoying the entry point lawn. I do hope they meandered a bit before they settled in.
We will never forget you, forgetmenots.
Variegated leaves add so much to gardens.

The scent of these flowers do a lot too!

Azalea were being grown inside a green house area.
Along with this...
And these tender plants.

Magnolias unlike the ones that grow in the southern climates.

(People traded cameras with strangers for picture taking. A friendly custom don't you think?)

The shrivels glassy berries hang on despite the new growth that is coming on to push them off.

Or perhaps they remain through winter to become a treat for returning migrating birds?

Again: variegated leaves add so much interest to gardens!
Don't know the name....
Grape something something...can't spell it right!
Hypnotic flowers. Just stare into the center and see what happens.
Tiny non-showy buds on a tree that will be covered in leaves in a week.
Ahh...the star of this post: Lenten Rose, AKA Hellebore. I like calling them Lenten Rose better. Check THIS picture for an idea of how many kinds there are.
Freckles are wonderful! Like starry constellations captured on flower petals.
Other roses had veins instead of freckles.
I think I'd like to add some Lenten Roses to our home garden.
Still don't know their name....
Blue that is the kind I love to wear.
More tiny Forget-me-nots.
The heart of Red Butte Gardens is a pond with huge koi fish.
A Canada goose pair swam around adding grace to the scene.
I tried to chat them up; mentioned Molson, pronounced "color" as "colour", admired Nanaimo bars.
They apparently were trying to shed their roots, and acted as those all those things meant nothing to them.
Couples were taking in the scenes everywhere.
The heat was stirring up the first thunderheads of the season.
There is a fish food dispenser on the pier; children love to feed the fish, and the ducks and geese love to get in on the fun as well.
This is the time of year where the trees remind you they are just as beautiful in spring as they are in the fall.
Oh...I should have mentioned that you should imagine hearing a waterfall in the distance as you view these pictures.
There are several thorough out the garden.
More shriveled overwintered fruit ripe and ready for the birds to enjoy.
This would make a good drawing or painting exercise: creating a white form using shadows for shaping.

(Yes, they did smell lemon-y, just like magnolias should.)

Funny little things...not pussywillows...don't know what they are called but there sure are fun.
More magnolia.
A bride getting photographed.
(The bride has her work cut out for her if she want to compete with this kind of scene.)
Another kind of flower...
The children's area of the garden is incredibly fun.
I liked how the grandparents were sitting, Mom was playing like a kid herself, and the children were facinated by the idea of stepping stones over a fish pond.

The official name of the magnolia in this location.

Pansies with Perms.

Pansies as Poodles.

Pansies that have Primped.

(Still fascinated by the different sizes that things come in.)
Hope I did the rest of the garden justice.
Hope that you enjoyed another lap around the garden as well!