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.

Thursday, June 22, 2017


Each week fellow blogger Tom posts about mural art.  His latest is here.  

He inspired me to share these two photos I took on the road leaving New Orleans.  

Someone had painted these boxes (electrical?) in the median strip.  I wish I had captured more of the art work.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

New Camera

I purchased a new camera yesterday. Another Canon.  I wanted something lighter to keep handy when I walk or in my purse.  I'm not an iPhone person and the cellphone I have though it takes photos they are lousy and a pain to transfer to the laptop.

Here's my new purchase.  Lighter weight than my other two.  I think its going to work just fine.

Powershot ELPH 190 IS

Here's my oldest one, heavier and I've dropped it too many times that the Menu button no longer works.  I think I may pass it on to my oldest granddaughter.

Powershot SX230 HS

Here's the one with the greater zoom.  I still struggle with what it has focused on so that my subject is blurred.  Unfortunately I can't see that when I'm taking the photo.

Powershot SX530 HS

The new camera has a setting to make photos vivid.

Here's the same view on another day with the oldest camera.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017


My daughter sent me this photo of flowers from her garden.  Significant to me because many of them came from my garden last spring before we moved.

The peony is one I purchased from the Philadelphia Flower Show many years ago.  It never bloomed for me.  It was good to see that it bloomed for Emily.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Random Windows in Helsinki

From our vacation last year to Europe here are some random photos of windows and their embellishments I found interesting.

A market place

Top of a building

A storefront window

Inside a church

Inside another church

Above a door

Sunday, June 18, 2017

What I'm Reading Now

Sometime this past year we saw a production of Nicholas Nickelby at Everyman Theatre.  In the program they had a listing of all the books written by Charles Dickens.  It got me thinking I'd like to read all those books in order written.

This past week I started Pickwick Papers.  It's rather funny in places, intentionally.  It's also a picture back in time more so than a historical novel would be.  Dickens is writing and lampooning characters in his time period.

I got the book from the Vantage House library.  I've checked out two more since our library here will be closing for renovations.  I'll need to find Oliver Twist though.  It's number 2 on the list but it wasn't on the shelf.  The public library should have it.

Have you read any Charles Dickens books lately?

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Last Year at This Time ...

... we were on our way back from a European vacation and then preparing for our move to Vantage House.  Our one year anniversary of moving here is approaching.

Here are some highlights from that vacation trip previously featured in many posts.




Scenes from the river boat




Cresky Krumlov





Notice all the food photos?  Lots of memories involve food.

Looking forward to our next trip across the Atlantic at the end of September - two weeks in Scotland where we will be based outside of Stirling and taking day trips from there.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Back to Flower Gardening

Rebecca, a friend I've made here at Vantage House, is head of the Resident Association, Landscape Committee.  She asked me last week if I'd like to take on one of the four garden plots that reside inside a picket fence in Sidwell Gardens.  I caved and agreed but not to plant vegetables but cutting flowers.

Monday she and I went to Meadow Farm Nursery to buy annuals.  No need to get perennials because the garden plots are to redone next year.  Annuals were on sale so Rebecca bought some too.

We had the place to ourselves on a Monday morning.

Now the temps this day were in the 90s, no telling what the heat index was.  We waited to do the planting until after the plot was in shade for the day.  

Here are my purchases setting in the garden plot.

At 2:30 we met there again to plant.  Rebecca had dumped a bag of top soil on her quarter.

Here's my quarter before I pulled out the tomato plants that another gardener planted there because she had too many for her quarter.  Don't know who planted the hosta and iris but I left those.

I made two beds with a path between.

Here's a sunflower I planted near the fence.

You can see Rebecca's planting behind mine.  She transplanted some astilbe to the back corner.

The balcony second from the top is ours.  I can peer down on my flowers.

Dan was up on the balcony and took this picture of us.

I'll keep you posted on how the flowers grow.  There is sun only at midday for several hours.

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