Welcome reader to my blog - a mixture of this and that. Now that we are living in a retirement community in downtown Columbia, MD my personal gardening activities are somewhat curtailed. I still enjoy visiting gardens, reading, watching wildlife on my walks, traveling, and occasional food commentary. Please leave a comment if you feel inspired to do so. I read every one of them.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Look What's Blooming!

From this:




to this:



My first ever amaryllis. A gift from a good friend.  What a nice spot of color in the midst of winter.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

A Wish Granted

Remember last week my pining for spring but still wishing for a very cold snap to freeze the pond?  Wish granted!  Cold snap upon us and last night it included snow - 2 inches.

 Here's the pond this morning after I came in from helping Dan shovel the driveway.


Here's the pond now after spending an hour out there cutting the cat tails and hauling them off to the piles in the woods.  It will make for a much neater pond come spring.  True I will still have to trim the irises and the Joe Pye weed and the butterfly bush.  But for those I don't have to venture into water.

I'm sorry for the birds though which liked to take cover amongst the cat tails.  That's another reason not to keep trimming out there.  That and the temps at 22º.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Return to the Glen

Sunday afternoon was a rather warm, high 50ºs day so I decided to grab the camera this time, put on my boots and head down to the glen where I visited on Saturday.





The glen is on the south side of our property.  Our backyard borders the top of the glen and with the leaves off the trees we can see into glen when we stand on the edge.  Come spring the view will slowly disappear.




I headed down the path way and down to the creek.

I can see just a bit of the house once I get down the path.

Tree trunks are scattered in the woods victims of the summer derecho.


I was in luck.  More artifacts, here displayed on a mossy tree trunk.



I headed up stream and spied these.  A canning lid seal made of ceramic or porcelain and it was whole.



And another pottery shard.


 On the trip back up the path way this snail shell caught my eye but I left it in place.

 An old tree stand built before we owned this property.
 Almost back to the house and this is perspective I have of my house.

And back to the top.




Connecting to Our World Tuesday.



Saturday, January 19, 2013

What is That There in the Water?

This morning instead of getting on the elliptical or putting in an exercise dvd I decided to walk to the mailbox and back.  Roundtrip it is a mile.  It's a down the hill up a long hill and return type of terrain.  On my return trip I took a detour since it was such a lovely morning and followed the trail through the glen.  This was originally a deer trail that we have maintained through the years now and it's a much more gradual climb back up to the house then coming up the driveway. There's a very small creek in the glen that the trail mostly follows.  Sorry no photos this time because no camera along on the walk.

Lots of trees have come down in the glen since the derecho last summer so fording the creek is no longer possible at one point and I had to detour following a new path the deer have created.  I did return to the second ford of the creek just to see it.  And what did I spy there?


A shard of an old pot. 

After pulling out that piece I checked further up stream and found this smaller piece. 


And this one.


Here is what I saw on the front.  From that I can picture the wide mouth pottery jar.




I know there is a trash pile somewhere upstream because we have found other artifacts.  I'll have to put on boots and go looking again very soon before the leaves and the bugs return.  Something to look forward to.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

New Address Book

I have only had three address books in my long life. 

This one  I bought yesterday at the Hallmark store is the replacement for my 2nd one, below.  
 I went looking for my first one before writing this blog but couldn't find it in any of those spots I had stashed away old keepsakes.  That first one was brown, about 2"x 3"and a gift from a maiden aunt as a high school graduation present, if memory serves me right.  I made the mistake of writing in it with pen so that as people's addresses changed I had to cross out and enter them again.  I had that address book through college and then after I was married and based on the entries in my second address book, until at the latest 1986.



The nice thing about the second address book was that it had looseleaf sheets and more space to enter information.  And I was so good about writing in pencil, mostly, that it stayed fairly neat for many years.  As you can see from above, other sheets got stuck in there as did sticky notes.  But this Christmas as I did my Christmas cards, I realized there were too many crossed out people in there.  Like acquaintances from when I worked for the federal government 28 years ago.  And aunts and uncles who had passed away.  Doctors we no longer used.  Out of date phone numbers and information about commuter buses.

It was time for a new address book.  So now comes the task of entering the addresses and phone numbers of family and current friends.  There will be old friends in there too because many have lasted through the years and though we may not see them as often at least there's always Christmas time to catch up.  There are new addresses in there too of friends made on the internet and nieces and nephews off to college so deserving their own entry now. It's an improvement over the last address book because it has space to note Christmas cards sent and received (something I did in the margin before), and space for birthdays.  Now the spaces for fax and email won't be used - I'll stick to the computer address book for that.

I wonder how long this one will last.  Let's see 1969-1986 was 17 years, 1986-2013 was 27 years.  I guess it will be 37 years. Until 2050?  Guess how old I'll be then?



Monday, January 14, 2013

View From My Window


The predominant color out my study window is brown, but I so wish it were green.  I know that winter is a necessary stage, a resting period for plant life, but I'm ready for it to be over soon.  Winter brown or spring green?  No question which is preferred.







Now I would like a good freezing, maybe even some snow to fall before this stage comes to its conclusion.  


There is one thing I need to do that is made easier by a frozen pond.  A good cold snap for several days would freeze the pond and let me walk out there to cut the cattails and get the spent ones out of the way.                    


I've long since given up on trying to remove the cattails from the pond.  That's an impossible task and I didn't even plant them there.  They came on their own with the frogs I guess.

I no longer regret that they are there.  In fact I so look forward to the new green shoots this coming spring.

Connecting to Our World Tuesday.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Almost Wordless Wednesday - Visitors!








It was about 4 o'clock one afternoon when this doe and her growing fawn ambled through the backyard.


Didn't know I was feeding more than just birds.




The fawn was bolder and came right up to the deck before it got spooked and ran down into the glen.





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