Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Elf and the Dormouse

So - did you wonder how the Umbrella was invented?  Here's the answer:

The Elf and the Dormouse
by Oliver Herford

Under a toadstool
Crept a wee Elf,
Out of the rain
To shelter himself.

Under the toadstool,
Sound asleep,
Sat a big Dormouse
All in a heap.

Trembled the wee elf,
Frightened, and yet
Fearing to fly away
Lest he get wet.

To the next shelter ---
Maybe a mile!
Sudden the wee Elf
Smiled a wee smile,

Tugged till the toadstool
Toppled in two.
Holding it over him
Gaily he flwer.

Soon he was safe home
Dry as could be.
Soon woke the Dormouse ----
"Good gracious me!

Where is my toadstool?"
Loud he lamented.
---And that's how umbrellas
First were invented.

Pretty sure it's true.  ;-)

Challenge: Countdown to Christmas! "A"

Countdown to Christmas! 


 Angel Wings, and

Angel Wing Begonias
 Kent Brandon - Angel Wing Begonia

 Katherine Too - Angel Wing Begonia

Begonia Joyce -  Angel Wing Begonia

Angel Wing Begonias are supposed to be easy-to-grow houseplants.  They enjoy bright, but not hot/direct, sunlight.  Best conditions are early morning or late afternoon sun.

Provide enough water and adequate drainage, so your plant doesn't have to endure long dry periods and/or wet, soggy roots.  It is recommended you water 'round the entire perimeter of the pot, draining the drain tray (or providing flat stones upon which the pot can stand).

May to October are the best blooming times . . . however, under optimal conditions, you may find your begonia blooming year-round!

 This is my Begonia.  It increased in girth two-fold over the 2010 growing season.

New begonia plants are easily propagated by taking cuttings and rooting in water.

The first three photos in this post were taken from this site.    You will also find a Huge array of photos of many, many more varieties of Angel Wing Begonias.  Perhaps you'll be inspired to try this plant yourself.

This post and its contents are the property of

Monday, November 28, 2011

Challenge: Countdown to Christmas!

Beginning Wednesday, November 30, I plan to begin a 26-day Alphabet Countdown to Christmas.  That is to say, on Wednesday the 30th, I'm going to emphasize the letter "A," December the 1st is "B,"  etc.

Your post might consist of a letter and a photo.  Or know how it is... you could complete a full-fledged, intricate post.  Or anything in-between. And You could join me if you'd like . . . Just let me know by leaving a comment!  :-)  (I also realize this is a BUSY month and you may not have time to do each letter... but that's okay.  (I may have a relapse moment or two myself!)

Twenty-six letters will be marching around,
Some with a smile and some with a frown.

Twenty-six letters stand for twenty-six days.
You're thinking of joining me?  Hip-hip-hooray!

Starting on Wednesday, "A" leads the pack
Ending on Christmas with "Z" - but no counting back.

Yes, Christmas morn does sport the last letter,
So, which of you is a Christmas 'go-getter?'

(Did you know you can create posts ahead of time and, under Post Options, pick the appropriate posting date?)

Have fun!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

'T is Thanksgiving, so let us give Thanks for what's past; looking forward to events that lie ahead.
H ope for the future, as we repast.
A gree we've been blessed and must share.
N oting higher purpose, we
"K eep on keepin' on!"
S haring with families and friends,
G iving as we're able.
I nvitations,
V acations, and
I magination for opportunity for
N eighbors (the "up close" friends and family) and wishing
G ood will and blessings to all.

May each of you, my family and friends, enjoy good health and promise, realizing in the upcoming days and months opportunities to learn, grow, and share.  Many Blessings to you on this THANKSGIVING day.
These two photos were taken in Illinois/Indiana as we traveled from Indianapolis to Springfield, Illinois (a lovely, leisurely drive) on October 23, 2011.


Friday, November 18, 2011

What a Wonderful Fall We Have Enjoyed!

Frankly (my dear!), I was worried all through October about my not being home long enough to do yardwork.  I thought perhaps I would have to "let things go," and see how it all "shook out" next Spring.  But I have been truly blessed (as has everyone else) by this wonderful, long, Autumn season.

Yes, the temperatures have been cold during these past couple of weeks.  Yes, the days are growing shorter.  BUT, perhaps you'll understand why I'm so thankful!  I've been able to rake (the same areas several times due to the WIND!) and get ready for Winter.  Truly grateful.

Photos? Okay, but be forewarned ... there are several! ;-)  Some may enlarge a little bit if you click on them.

 On the left:  Japanese Blood Grass - On the right:  A variety of sedum
 Ever faithful, ever prolific Gaillardia Daisy!

Below:  From the middle of the front yard, looking south towards "The Raised Beds."  
Notice the nicely raked lawn! (Well, a few leaves blew in this morning.)  :-)

Over-the-shoulder look back towards the garage.

On the west side of the house, near the south end, you can tell where some "Peppermint Ice" Hellebores 
and a Ligularia will be thriving in the next couple of years!

This view, on the south side of the house, makes me happy.
Nice and neat!  (For the third time!)  ha.   Well, there is the matter of a Multitude of Acorns this year!

Two views of  "The Woodland Trail" garden.
Left:  Continuing on the south side of the yard, looking east.
Right:  Looking back after the walk-through.  (Oh, yes... notice those hellebores.
They've been there for awhile!)

Below takes around the south end of the house.  The shed is off to the right.

This is the east side of the house looking north.

 As long as we're near the house, I'll walk along that little path you see above.
(Yes, it's incomplete.  Just as the pergola that's supposed to be outside the door is "incomplete." lol)

This view shows you a few stubborn green plants.  Heartleaf brunnera and tiarella.

'Touch of Class' hosta, next to a sad-looking wild ginger leaf.

Looking back (south) at the little path through the large Center Beds in the backyard.

Backyard "East Bed."  I've begun a pathway behind this bed.
A new bed has been begun (see the upright logs in the background?).

This is another view of the backyard "East Bed."
(There used to be a TON of leaves on the yard back here.
Two separate rakings have it looking like this!)

Now we'll walk behind it.
As we walk here, this is almost exactly what you'd see to your left and to your right.
This bed curves around and up.

This is the "Top Backyard Bed."  
(It was created to help camouflage the big, unsightly shed that was built -
shortly after we moved into our home.)
(I've planted a Pagoda Dogwood, a 'Quickfire' Hydrangea, a Viburnum,
and several wild (SLOW GROWING) cherry trees.  More to come.)

Looking towards a neighbor's house on the North side of our home.
I've not raked here much... will do some tomorrow (I hope!).

This little bed is next to the garage/driveway.  There are several burning bushes and to P.J. Rhododendron.
(I'm thinking about doing a little adjustment on the number of burning bushes next Spring.)

 'Mohican' Viburnum on the North side of the house.

Back in front:  On the front porch, our two new locally-made adirondack chairs 
and two pots that need to be emptied tomorrow.

They were so pretty all summer.
The coleus did so Well (it always does here).

Are you prepared for Winter?
After tomorrow (no... make that After Thanksgiving Weekend!)
Let it  Snow!  


May you enjoy these next couple of weeks with family and friends.  May you find MUCH for which to be Thankful.  Count those Blessings!  :-)

"Shady" Gardener

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Tonight's Sky Scape!

 How could you do anything besides admire tonight's sunset?

Blessings Bigger Than Life!

Been out of the loop.  Been doing a lot of traveling.  Been home for two days' time between trips.  Been RAKING!  :-)   
 But THIS sight gave me PAUSE! 

Hope YOU are doing well.  I'll give you a little peek at some of my most recent home/activity very soon.
Shady in name only.  Especially since the leaves are falling from the trees!  lol.