Friday, September 29, 2023


The garden is starting to look like it is going to sleep for the winter, a little less manicured.  This is not a criticism, just an observation.  We still get the enjoyment of walking around this beautiful garden as we ever have.

There are still plenty of Brown-eyed susan's blooming. There was a sign at the visitor center wanting to hire people for the light show set up.  That opens in November. 

The Gazebo on Lake Caroline was quiet, but we didn't stop this time.  We were heading to one of our favorite areas, our viewing spot on Lake Lina.  Next we can see the pods from a Swamp rose mallow plant.

Other names for the rose mallow are Crimsoneyed rose-mallow, Rose-mallow and Eastern rose-mallow, with a botanical name of Hibiscus moscheutos.

This plant is called Joe-pye weed, also known as Hollow Joe-pye weed, Queen of the meadows, Hollow-stemmed Joe-pye-weed and Purple thoroughwort. Botanical name Butrochium fistulosum.

Next you can see the Globe amaranth blooms, interesting other names are Common globe amaranth, Devil's clover, Red globe everlasting, Makhmali, Vadamallli, Common Globe-Amaranth, Globe Flower, St. Francis' Cord, Bachelor's button, and Thousand Day Red with a botanical name of Gomphrena globosa.  I share these names because everything fascinates me about every flower I can identify.  

This pretty blue is the Flossflower, also known as Bluemink, Blue billygoatweed and Blueweed to name a few.  Its botanical name is Ageratum houstonianum.
Next is the Zinnia, also known as Common Zinnia, Elegant zinnia, Youth-and-age, Garden Zinnia, Youth-and-Old Age, Young Helleborine and Wild Zinnia.  Botanical name Zinnia elegans.

Spider flower, also known as Pink queen, Grandfather's whiskers, Spider plant and Spider legs.  Botanical name Tarenaya hassleriana.

There are certain flowers I can't stop taking photos of.  This is one of them.  It is a native of South America.  

These always fascinate me at this stage.  They are Cardoon, also known as Artichoke thistle, Globe artichoke, Prickly artichoke and Cardy.  Its botanical name is Cynara cardunculus.

The following is the Castor bean, also known as Castor oil plant, Mole bean plant and Ricinus to name a few.  Its botanical name is Ricinus communis.
The following is called a Floss flower, also known by the names Bluemink, Blue billygoatweed, Blueweed, to name a few.
Below is the area we like to sit.  There are Adirondack chairs that are very comfortable on one side, on a platform overlooking the pond.  

One of the many benches available. 

and another for those who have little ones.

My last photos from this trip's visit, done of the collage of plants and blooms we saw that day.

One last visual, a map of the garden.

Thursday, September 28, 2023


I noticed each little boy had an endearing twinkle in his eyes, a mischievous look on his face.

UK 1890


“A person who behaves badly but in an amusingly mischievous rather than harmful way; often for personal profit.”

There was such a scallywag in one of our old neighborhoods, a darling little boy I was very fond of.  The other children used to pick on him and I would hear him call out my name for help.  All I had to do was open the front door for others to scatter in all directions.  He would run in the house and I would give him milk and cookies, and he stayed with me until his mom got home.  

Times were changing and most all of the moms went out to work on our road.  I had a small cottage industry that allowed me to stay home, so I became the unofficial nanny to several of the neighborhood kids.  I didn’t mind because our son had lots of company.  

My little scallywag, however, had a lot of time on his hands, as his mom worked longer hours than most.  She also traveled on business and had a live-in nanny who was as old as I am now, and he spent most of his non-school time running all hours around the neighborhood.

One time, just before the holidays, I noticed there were paper plates in the gutter in front of my neighbors’ houses, including ours.  As I looked a few doors down, there was my little scallywag sitting on the curb.  He was stuffing his mouth with cookies from one of the plates that had been previously festively wrapped.  

His mother had given those cookies to all the neighbors as a gift, and placed them in the letter boxes for them to find when they came home and checked their mail.  Scallywag said he thought it was okay to take them back, as they were his mother’s cookies, he had helped her bake them and he was hungry.  

We had a little chat about that.  I told him a) he would get into trouble going into people's letter boxes and he shouldn't do that anymore, and b) once his mother had given her cookies away, they were now the neighbors' cookies, not his mothers and not his. 

He was six years’ old and we had our very own artful dodger on the loose.  Not really, but I think you know what I mean.  He's probably chatting to his own kids now, giving them talks like, "I understand, when I was a kid there was this time..."

When his mom remarried and moved out of state a couple of years later, I really missed that little boy, and even now the thought of him makes me smile.

After reading this Gregg said what he remembers is that he was a natural athlete, could kick a soccer ball and run like the wind.

What I remember is that kid sure loved his cookies and milk.

The photo was given to me by Gregg who belongs to an online historical photo group.  Seeing all those little boys sent me on a trip down memory lane.  A great trip for me, thank you Gregg.

Wednesday, September 27, 2023


A beginning post (there will be others) of the process of having the new deck put in.  Everything here has been done in one day.  I hope you won't be too bored, not my usual type of post and definitely a change of pace from flowers and critters. We were very impressed with how hard these young men worked, starting around 9.00 a.m. and finishing at 7.00 p.m. (this was yesterday - 9-25-23).  The weather is iffy this week, but we had a rain-free day, though not so much today.  It rained hard in the middle of the night.  They arrived this morning to leave a skip out front...

with more building material.  My first few photos show the old deck.  You can see the planters and the bird bath.  My aim is to put more planters, with a few feet of space in between, along the rail area.  I have always liked the privacy framework but the new one won't look like this. It will still have a privacy screen but won't have the overhanging beams.  I'm not one for change but there you go.   There will be no beams to hang the plants, or for the birds to perch, or for the squirrels to run across.  

I heard the crows in the trees squawking, "What the heck!"  The other birds are wisely making themselves scarce.  
So, above and below you can see where the planks have been removed and it's down to just the supports. It seems strange to look down after opening the patio door.  We seem higher up than I had thought.  
All a matter of perspective I know.  
That's the old wood in a big pile.  Does it sound silly to say that I feel a bit sorry to see the old deck go?  A lot of good memories seeped into every beam over the last 30 plus years.
Holes have been dug for the posts...
and now the new frame work.
I have a confession to make.  For a couple of years now I have watched either YouTube videos on camping, or where people build their own log homes. I love the look of log homes and love to see them come together.  As the day wore on, I enjoyed the process out back.  
This is as far as we got as we are waiting for an inspector to look at what has been done.  Once we have the go-ahead, I will be able to do another post.  
At the end of the day we had an unexpectedly visitor, a Mourning Dove flew onto a beam.
He was definitely giving me the eye, trying to figure what was going on.
He couldn't really settle and kept beam hopping.
Back and forth, back and forth...

Finally, he gave up and went back home up into the trees.
Is that a look of disgust?  Am I projecting?
You betcha!
A cardinal came a few minutes later, but after one hop he was out of there before I could get a photo. He also gave me the side-eye and yes, I am once again projecting.

I hope to have a second part to this deck building very soon, maybe a third.  I am not sure how these things work with getting the inspector's approval, or how long it will take.  Not too long I hope!  We did everything by the book, got the permission of the Home Owner's Association first, got signatures from four of our neighbors and showed them the plans to make sure they would have no objections.  They were all very nice about it.  It took a couple of weeks to get the go-ahead from the HOA, and now the inspector to wait for.  Interesting process!
Yes, Mr. Squirrel, and you have a thing about peanuts don't you?  But that's okay, I have a thing about projecting, says I with a smile!  Please don’t  look at me like that! 

Thanks for looking 
and have a great day.

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

A FEW SMILES FOR YOU TODAY - THIS AND THAT matter what time of the year!

All found on Pinterest.

A little blurry but if you enlarge the recipe, it should be easier to read.