Friday, May 29, 2009


My backyard is a veritable smorgasbord of color and fragrance this morning. The calendar may say spring but the temperature says summer. With the very warm temperatures my roses have exploded in bloom. Walking in my garden is a heady experience with all the intense scents that my roses give off. I am of the belief that if I'm going to have a rose in my garden, it needs to have a fragrance. I have such a limited space for them that I just can't choose one with only color and beauty. I have picked an eclectic bouquet to enjoy in the house.

Many other plants are in bloom as well - oriental poppies, iris, California lilac, calla lillies, clamatis, the Stella Dora daylillies, columbine, and honeysuckle (that one smells heavenly).My marathon weeding weekend has made the walk through the yard much more pleasant. I can see the flowers rather than the weeds now.

I love this time of year. (sigh)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

What a difference a couple days makes

Now you see them/it
Now you don't
In the past 48 hours I've learned alot about honeybees - in fact, I've learned more than I really wanted to know. Monday late in the afternoon I heard the intensity of buzzing in my yard increase substantially. I looked up and saw quite a few bees circling above my backyard. I went in the house and watched as they seemed to settle in my sweet gum tree at the back of my backyard. A little later I went out and discovered a huge hive/swarm of what appeared to be yellow jacket hornets!!!!! Yesterday I called around and finally found an exterminator who would be here this morning at 8:00 to look at my problem.
Well, he arrived right on time and took a look at the hive/swarm. He thought they were honeybees as yellow jackets don't form a nest like what I had. He had forgotten to put his binoculars in his truck, so made arrangements to come back this afternoon to look at them more closely. I went on-line and found that honeybees frequently swarm and form a temporary home like what was in my tree while they look for a more suitable permanent home.
When I got home about 4:00 the hive/swarm was GONE, and the exterminator was just coming out of the back yard. He said it's common this time of year for honeybees to stay in one place for 36 to 48 hours and then leave. There can only be one queen per hive so if there is more than one, the queen leaves and takes some of the workers and drones with her to find a new home.
So, my backyard is again mine and I can work/relax out there without the fear of being stung. Whew!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Back home

I got back home last Sunday after being gone for about 10 days. I was amazed with how my garden had grown in my absence. Here's a photo of the front year that I just put in one year ago. I'm afraid I will have to dig up some things by next year as they have filled in so quickly. The rhode in the background in front of the house window is COVERED in huge pink flowers. It is nice to see the fruits of last summer's labors.

I missed a haircut appointment while I was gone and my hair became a mess. So, I finally got in for the overdue trim yesterday. I love the way Victoria styles it and have not been able to replicate it. So I took a couple photos so I could remember how good it looks when she does it.

Maybe some day I'll get good enough with the curling brush and the hairdryer so it will look like this all the time.

I finally have some time to get to work in the garden today after working every day this week. I'm just not used to that schedule, but we've moved into the CCC building while still treating patients at the old building. It's kept all three of us nursing personnel working full time to take care of both places. I'll be glad when everyone is moved over and we're all in the same place again.

Off to the garden.......

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Welcome Eliana Pamela Stiles

Welcome, little one. She is so very precious. She arrived by C-Section May 7, 2009 at 3:41pm. She weighed in at 8 pounds and 8 ounces, and was 21 inches long. In this photo she is less than one hour old. The hair looks curly, but once the meconium and vernix was washed out, her hair is straight.
The Stiles couple has now become a family of three and they couldn't be happier. Greg is already super dad and can change a messy diaper in record time. Sara is slowly recuperating from the C-section and large blood loss. She loves snuggling with Eli and is already speaking to her in Spanish. She and Eli will be released from the hospital on the 11th, so I am going back up tomorrow to stay with them for another week, so they can get settled into a good routine. I am so blessed to be able to be a part of this special time in their family and see my first grandchild at the very beginning of her life.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

It's about time

That I update my poor lonely blog. I've been really busy with work, trips to Portland, and yardwork. Also am working on a baby quilt for my first grandchild.

This photo shows my little vegetable garden I've been working on. This area was all grass and weeds until I covered it with newspaper and some of the soil left from last summer's front yard re-do. I'm gradually adding compost, left-0ver soil, fertrich from last summer's project and dolomite lime. I had a soil test done on the soil here - it's in horrid shape so I decided on slightly raised beds so I could take my time enriching it all for the next few years. What you see planted here is a six pack of lettuce varieties, several tiny cilantro seedlings and two rows of carrots and radishes. The branch in the upper portion of the photo is my apple tree which is in full bloom.

The next area of raised bed will hold tomatoes and red peppers. The third area will be green beans, lemon cukes, and a zucchini plant. It's a small area but will keep me in my favorites for the summer. I plan on some rotation of crops as the summer progresses into fall.

The rest of the yard work has been weeding and spring clean-up. I have a lot blooming now and love this time of year in the garden.