Readers, Welcome to my blog (formerly Birds, Blooms, Books, etc). I'm entering a new decade taking on the challenge of moving from Maryland after living there 46 years and learning about my new home here in New England in the Live Free or Die state - New Hampshire. Join me as a write this new chapter of my life.

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Company Coming ...

... today, Sunday.  Our first overnight guests since we moved here.

Youngest daughter, son in law and granddaughter #3 are driving from Buffalo today and will be here for a week.  They will have to work some of the time so I'll have almost 4 year old granddaughter to play with. Granddaughters #1 and #2 are excited about seeing their cousin too.

We will celebrate a birthday for daughter Emily while they're here!

So commenting on your blog will not be high on my priority for the next week.

Here are some funnies for the week.

Saturday, May 29, 2021

Enjoying the View


The three red Xs on the deck are marking boards to be replaced. This deck is enormous. 24' x 24'.  More square footage than some of the studio apartments at the retirement community in Columbia, MD where we used to live.  (We had a 2 bedroom but it was only twice the size of this deck.) The only furniture we have so far are two Adirondack chairs (Christmas gift) and two lounge chairs that were left in barn. There's also the bench that you can see. No grill, no table and chairs, no umbrella - all on list to get once barn is done.  We need a place to put the stuff come winter!  We also need the deck repaired and in July when house is painted, the deck will be pressure washed and stained.

In the meantime, come sit awhile and enjoy the view!

Thursday, May 27, 2021

Blooms to look forward to

 I do have some buds and plants to look forward to enjoying.

This iris - color unknown for now.

My herbs from the bottom - up: sage, mint, rosemary, basil, and thyme.

I've planted two of these mixtures. The geraniums are a deep red shade that pops.

Tamed this garden bed and planted marigolds and cleome.  The bricks were buried under dirt and weeds. I dug them out and weeks later 

decided I needed a walkway of sorts to the hose bib.

This lupine will be pink.

Not sure about the other plant - a daisy?

Transplanted iris are having a rough time but one showed a bud today.

This iris transplant is liking its spot.

Other lupine transplants will produce some flowers.

Columbine volunteers from daughter's garden have set blossoms already.

I planted 4 colors of impatiens that should like this mostly shaded spot.

Finally this huge clump of Siberian iris should not disappoint me.

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Weed or Perennial?

 I need some help identifying plants in garden beds.  Can't tell what is a weed or a perennial.





also #4 on other side of fence.

#5 - this is the one I thought was asparagus coming up.

#6 I think this is a spider wort.

#7 This appears in the wildflower book as in poppy family - Celandine.

Whatever help you can give is greatly appreciated.

Monday, May 24, 2021

Another Project Complete

When Dan dismantled the loft in the barn I salvaged one piece of wood to make a shelf for the rec room upstairs in the barn.


The board is 15 feet long and had been part of the flooring of that loft.

Saw marks were evident from a sash type saw mill.
The bark on the edge was not removed.

The above three photos are from when I laid it on the bench on the deck to sand it. I should have washed the board first before the first two grits of sand paper.  Dan did then help me scrub it and even after sanding there was lots of dirt to be removed. Once dried I sanded it some more with several finer grits before Dan took it to the basement where I set up drop clothes to polyurethane the board.

I did three coats on the top and two on the underneath.

Below shows its final spot in the rec room.

The bark edge really gives it a neat effect I think.

I have a box of artifacts to be washed and placed on there for viewing along with the ping pong balls and paddles.

Next big project will be painting the rec room.  Granddaughter #2 and I were up there this morning and talked about painting it with green hills, cows, blue sky, clouds, a rainbow and flowers.  It should be fun.  But before any of that goes up all those walls need a washing and primer coat on the wallboard. Stay tuned!

Thursday, May 20, 2021



I know I've mentioned that we plan to convert part of the barn to a garage with a cement floor.  From the outside it will retain the barn look with a sliding barn door.  What I haven't mentioned is the difficulty Dan has had to get someone to do this work.

The first person he contracted with to replace temporary floor supports in the basement was gung ho to tackle the barn. He even wrote a nice email back to Dan to thank us for the quick payment for the basement work and to ask if we wanted an automatic garage door opener.  Then he went silent.  Didn't respond to emails - nothing.

The second person Dan spoke with about the barn is a local handyman our neighbor has used.  Dan got him to replace a window in the eaves with a door so should we need to access that attic space (no access inside the house) we had the door.  He did the work just fine so Dan had him walk through the barn which the guy who was of few words, said he could do.  He said he'd get back to Dan with a proposal.  Nothing.  Dan left a long voicemail that was never returned.  We've seen the guy since and he says hi but nothing about the barn.

On to a third person - this time someone who was recommended by the previous owner.  He in fact was responsible for replacing the bulkhead just as we bought the house.  He came over and showed Dan where his initials were in the concrete in the basement along with previous owners so had worked on the renovation of that space.  He was so excited to work on the barn and gave an indication that he would start fairly soon so that's why Dan dismantled the loft and the ground flooring in early March so the guy could see the foundation.  The guy brought over a grading contractor to look at the driveway slope.  He brought over someone else to look at the foundation with him.  While we were in Buffalo in early April he had beams and hardware delivered to the barn.  The day after we returned from Buffalo he met with the cement contractor we'd used to pave the basement floor. They discussed the cement for the barn. They guy prepared a plan for the first phase.

We waited and waited from early April.  Dan sent emails to check with him.  His response he'd be here soon.  A couple more weeks - he'd be here pretty soon.  He'd be here the next week. Still no show. Monday Dan called him and he'd probably be here this week.  He would call before he comes.

It's Thursday at 10 am when I'm writing this.  He's next door cleaning up the tree that came down at our neighbor's.  She told Dan last week that the guy would take care of it for her when he was here working on our barn. 

He has shown no interest in at least saying hello.  Made no eye contact with Dan who was out front working on the door latch.

Will he come over?

Postscript: 1:00 pm. I left at 10:45 to pick up granddaughter #2 and go pick up our CSA share.  Dan finally went over to talk with the guy as it looked like he was finishing up at the neighbors. He talked Dan's ear off for an hour - life story stuff.  He does plan to do the barn but no definite start date.  He will get to it.  Dan is satisfied for now.  He doesn't want to have to look for a fourth contractor.

Monday, May 17, 2021



White and purple lilac in bloom but not fragrance in the air as I expected.  Here's the white one next to deck.

Gift tulips finally bloomed on Saturday.  They are a delicate white and pink variety.

Saturday, May 15, 2021



Purple lilac!

White lilac!

Unknown tree blossoms!


And peony in the weeds!