Thursday, May 25, 2017

They are ready to come out

The weather was finally nice enough for me to sit on  the back deck this afternoon. 

Barley & Hops were getting their noses full at the screen.  I better get things power washed this weekend so Barley can get some cat condo time. 

My peonies are just starting too open. 

These early ones are so pretty,  and by the looks of the other buds, I'm in for a good show this year. 

On a very serious note, today was the first time that I drove past the serious damage to the trailer park near Chetek, Wisconsin. I had seen the photographs on the internet and in the newspaper and watched a video that a drone took of the damaged area... But seeing it in person, is completely different. As I was driving down the county road and came to the area where you could see the missing Turkey Farm barns on the left (now smoldering piles of debris) and on the right the complete devastation of the trailer park, it was really quite shocking. Tears came to my eyes as soon as I saw the shredded trees and then when I saw the actual damage and debris to the trailer park, it was heartbreaking. The turnout for volunteers has been strong, from what I've heard, and a local businessman is offering to match up to a million dollars worth of donations that will then be distributed amongst those in need. Of course, none of that happens overnight and these folks need help overnight. It's a helpless feeling but I have faith in American Red Cross and some of the Church groups that are doing good things for these folks and I hope that all will end up in situations that are as good or better than what they had.

My life is good,  I am very lucky. 

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Greenhouse trip

Monday was our annual greenhouse trip with the Cameron Senior Citizens.  I was driving separate to have room for plants purchased.  The weather was not very nice, cloudy and cool, not ideal.
My friend Carol was the bus hostess and let me know that their time at the Winter Greenhouse was cut short because of the weather, so I was on my own for the rest of the day.
So, I stopped at a greenhouse in Ladysmith, WI called Colonial Nursery.  I had heard good things about this greenhouse from friends. 
They had amazing annuals.
I didn't see all their perennials as it was a short visit.
I did buy a Chippewa Blueberry bush that I hope will grow well in my yard.

Maybe we will take the seniors to this nursery sometime and spend a little time in Ladysmith.
From here I headed towards Winter.
I saw 5 eagles along the way and this guy gave me a chance to drive on 1/2 mile, turn around, come back and find a driveway to ditch the car and then I walked 100 yards to his location.
He was sitting in a Poplar tree, and gave the occasional call to a juvenile that I saw nearby, but he continued to sit for me.
I'm pleased with these shots.

My next stop was the Winter Greenhouse in Winter, WI.
It was really cold there, but I managed to scoop up a few items.
I'm going to try a white bleeding heart in my yard, I added Cosmos to the septic vent flower beds, more flox for the ditch and a few more poppies to add to my other poppies in hopes of a major poppy bed some year and I picked up a beautiful hosta for the cemetery that I plan to plant near Grandma & Grandpa Johansen's head stone.
It wasn't a day for sitting or walking in the gardens at Winter, 
too bad because this is just gorgeous.

From Winter, I headed to Hayward.  I wanted to go to the Mercantile Kitchen Store there.
I picked up some flavored balsamic vinegars and had a visit with this beautiful dog.
As soon as I walked in the door he came over to me and when I started to pet him, he leaned up against me the way dogs do.  
His name is Wusthof, as in
 Wusthof Cutlery  -“Serious Cutlery for Serious Cooks!”
He's a heart throb.
His Dad left and Wusthof was sad but then he came over to me for a little petting.
I also visited the Ben Franklin in Hayward, which is a well disguised fabric store.
I picked up some flannel for a new project I'm going to try.

Back home, I planted all my purchases and it rained overnight.
Perfect timing.
Life is Good.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

An Art Show

My niece (in law) Erin is an art teacher in Baldwin, WI.
Each spring she has a show to display the art work her students have created through the year.
It's a special event that Erin and her assistant put their heart and soul into.
She always invites me and I always try to go.
This year was even better than last year.

Part of what I think is so interesting is the influence of each project is a well known artist, so the kids are learning art history, art appreciation and the skills involved with the project.
Here are a few photos from the show.

Great nephew Jake's 'Scream'

Inspiration:  Sculpture by ArtistRobert Indiana

Inspiration:  Cats by Laurel Burch

Koi pond

Inspiration:  Chihuly Glass Sculpture
I love that a Jr. Kindergarten student did this.


 I loved all the cats.
I'd frame one of these for my house, they were great.

Negative/Positive by great nephew Jackson.
Such an interesting technique.
Art stretches the imagination, that is for sure.

More cats

 Chihuly Chandelier

Time Flies When You are Making Art
 Inspiration:  Van Gogh Sunflowers

There were many other projects and I'm looking forward to next year's show.
Well done Erin!
Well done budding artists of Baldwin, WI!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Spring in my yardI

 I mowed today.  With all the rain,  everything is green.

 The hops are thriving.

Some interesting clouds this afternoon.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

My friend the Pentax is home

I finally got my Pentax camera repaired.  I've struggled taking outdoor photos with the Nikon camera I bought, although it was great in the gym.
Tonight I took my old pal Pentax for a walk around the yard.
No takers on the bird houses yet, lots of vacancy.

Lilacs at the edge of the woods.  Small but beautiful.

Even in the pouring rain, the Oriole wants his jelly.

Soon to be Peony.
I hope these wait to bloom until these constant rains are over.

These are going to be stunning.

Lone Trillium in the woods.
A little worse for the wear, but still a favorite lovely.
I got all my new perennials and the annuals in the ground or pots before all this rain.
They are probably craving a little sun now, like this new sap bucket planter.
This is the only bear I want to see around my yard from now on.
The folks in Chetek & Cameron are really suffering as they sort through the rubble to find their belongings.  Many are still without power and many are without homes to go home to.
I'm lucky and I know it every day, but this was a good reminder that 
Life is Good
for me.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Busy Day

Started the day with Jeff coming to finish up the flooring.
Laundry / Cat Room - before

Entry - before

Beautiful now, goodbye ugly vinyl.

And it's a wrap, all done.  Yay
Then, we had our Marathon Bridge wrap up banquet.  It was our turn for my partner and I to hostess this event which means bringing all the cards, score sheets, pencils and some door prizes, along with arranging for the meal and gathering everyone's menu choice.
I'm kind of glad it is over.

When we arrived, it was pouring rain and the parking lot is under construction, so it was treacherous getting into the building.  When we left, it was sunny, hot and humid and felt stifling. 
Storms were predicted.

About 5pm the power went out at my house and I spent some time in the storm closet.
About 5:30pm I heard many EMS vehicles going south on County Road SS.
Lucky my cell phone kept me alerted to the storm's progress.
A tornado hit a trailer park near Chetek and it looks to be a total loss.
A friend of mine lost her house as she and her husband sheltered in the basement.
Several turkey farm barns were in ruins.
This is devastating damage for all.
I was lucky.
After a couple of hours my power came back on.
Some were not so lucky.

The Floor

Today Jeff came to install the new flooring in the bathrooms and laundry room.  
I should have known I would want it all done when we did the first part.
It is so nice.
The master bathroom is done.

before - ugliest vinyl on the face of the earth
Wood look, I love it so much

The guest bathroom is done also.
I forgot to take a before photo.  But trust me, it's much better!
Tomorrow, he will finish up with the laundry room.  
The end of home improvement projects for awhile so my budget can heal up.
But, this was very worth it, I do love it and now it will be done.


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