Monday, April 29, 2013

Goldfinch and Old Photos

I have been quite busy in the garden this week, the weather has been perfect for lots of weeding, and pruning, and rearranging things.  Throughout the week, the birds have really started to visit the feeders, yesterday the birds that live along the water in the trees behind our yard were full of song, it sounded like hundreds of birds had arrived.  Then the goldfinch arrived at the feeders in large numbers as they do every mid spring.  This year I added a new feeder to one of my garden beds, and I spent quite a while sitting on the patio enjoying their visit.  I love how bright yellow goldfinch are this time of year!

After they noticed the new feeder more and more arrived, between all three feeders in the garden we had no less than 35 birds at a time!  They nearly emptied all three feeders by the end of the day!

We also have happy little bird families in the bird houses, Mom and Dad have been back and forth feeding their little ones who you can hear chirping away in the bird house.  We have also had visits from the Red Wings, and Robbins, and I have spotted a few birds of prey as well (probably drawn in by all the finch), and last week we heard a screech owl!  So bird watching is becoming quite the sport around here. :)

In addition to all the gardening and bird watching, I have quite a photo project on my hands.  This week we got my mother moved into her new home, and I was excited to offer to organize her old photos.  It has been quite the sleuthing project to determine the who, what, and where of each photo.  It is a good reminder to label those photos, including the digital variety, I am hoping to organize my own a little better after I am done with these.  I am first breaking them down by decade, then by year, then scanning them onto my computer so I can send copies to my sisters and of course so I can have my own copies, and maybe put together a few photos albums.

I absolutely love seeing all the really old photos- This is a picture of my great uncle and his navigator home on leave from World War 2, he was a B-17 pilot and flew multiple bombing missions earned two distinguished flying crosses and a purple heart.  I find it very interesting to look back in history.

Here is a picture of my mother and her brother ready for school back in the fifties- so cute!

Here they are as teens taking care of their horses in 1969.

Here is another picture of my mother in 1966, so pretty, and very fun to see the different fashions!

There are also plenty of pictures of me as a child, here are me and my sister back in the late 70's, I loved riding around on my bike, such fun memories.

So that is what I have been up to this week, I am hoping to finish organizing these photos in time to get back to finishing my fairy tale posts that I am eager to complete!

I hope everyone is enjoying their spring!  Thanks for reading!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Potatoes, Prom, and A Picnic Under a Tree

This week the weather cooperated with us, and we were able to get a good portion of work done in the garden.

It is such a welcome sight to see the blue sky peeking out through the clouds! 

We made good progress on the weeding, and rearranged my veggie garden to make room for my two new raised beds that we will be building very soon.  It is so nice to get the garden beds weeded and ready to be planted.

Back in March I bought seed potatoes and Potato Planter bags so I could try growing a few potatoes in my little backyard garden.  I was finally able to get them planted this last weekend.

You start with the bags rolled down, they were a little smaller than I thought they would be, so I will be very curious to see how they manage to grow potatoes.  First you add a layer of dirt, then add a few seed potatoes.

I put in five of these little purple variety because they were pretty small, and I don't intend to let them grow very large.

The larger Red Pontiac's, I only put three per bag.

Then we covered them in a layer of dirt, and as the plant starts to grow up through the soil, I will add more soil, and unroll the bag until they come all the way to the top of the growing bag.  I will have to post their progress, and if it works well, I would love to plant even more next year, we love potatoes around here!

I also decided to plant my old re-purposed wheelbarrow turned planter with some lettuce starts I bought, for a little instant veggie garden gratification.  A green leaf variety, and a red leaf "Merlot" variety.  I look forward to a pretty bed of lettuce

The turnip I planted last fall, from an old grocery store turnip that I forgot to use up in my soup, has the most pretty yellow blossoms that I have been enjoying.  I am looking forward to getting the rest of my garden planted over the next month.  The weather man reported weather in the high 70's next week, and I am looking forward to some nice warm sunny days!

Last week my daughter also attended her Senior prom. She spent the day getting ready with a group of friends, so I don't have any before the prom pictures yet, and I am eagerly waiting to see the prom pictures she took with her friends at the prom, but I was able to snap a few pictures when she arrived home late in the evening after a fun night out celebrating with her friends.  They all went out to Thai food, then headed into downtown Portland for prom, which was a masquerade themed dance, then ended the evening by stopping in at Portland's well loved Voodoo Doughnut shop, before heading back home.

This last week we also had the fun of a visit from Sarah and Joe's youngest cousins, they had a great time playing board games together.   They were all so cute, I'm glad I got a picture!

The cousins spent the night, and the next day, while Sarah and Joe were off to school, I had the fun of hanging out in the garden with the little ones while the sun was out.  My little niece discovered that she fit quite nicely under my Weeping Katsura tree.

She ran and brought her brother, and they both enjoyed their new found little hidden garden.

There is a little stone path under the tree, that they enjoyed exploring.

I think they looked like cute little garden elves peeking out from the branches!

We decided that it was the perfect spot for an impromptu picnic, so while they were playing I made a few sandwiches, along with chips and a cookie for dessert.  I remember as a child how fun it was to find little hidden spots among trees and shrubs!

What a fun spring day!

I hope everyone has a great weekend! Thanks for reading! :)

Friday, April 5, 2013

A Very Busy Spring

Sorry for the long bloggy break, we have had a very busy last couple of weeks.  Last week was spring break, and I had planned quite a few projects. My daughter is updating her room in honor of her upcoming graduation, and we also thought we would tackle some organizing projects.  We also were very busy helping my mother move, and all the packing that goes along with that.  My mother will be staying with us for a month, while we get her moved into her new home, so we were also rearranging things around the house for company.  Although the week was beyond busy, it ended with a very nice Easter celebration, my sister and her family were able to come for a visit, and we had an impromptu Easter dinner with lots of family fun.

I was too busy to snap pictures most of the time, but here are a few pictures I have captured throughout the last couple of weeks.

The weather has been back and forth between very nice and sunny and then back to rainy, one evening, on our way home, the sunset was so beautiful, the sky was hazy and the way the sun looked through the haze was really interesting, the camera didn't quite capture what we saw, but it was pretty watching it set.

The same time we were watching the hazy sunset, across the road a very vibrant rainbow was shining through the hazy dark sky, it was stunning, we had to pull over to get a good look.

While helping my mother pack we were going through some very old pictures and things.  I really loved this old picture of my "Nana" and "Dune" - my great grandparents, from back in the thirties, all dressed up to go to a Greek wedding according to the back of the photo.  I always hear wonderful stories about my great grandparents, and it is fun to see pictures like this, I love my nana's hair cut and her very pretty dress, I wonder what the wedding was like. :)

Our Easter celebration was fun, Sarah and Joe were happy with their Easter gifts, Joseph was happy with his giant chocolate Easter bunny, he saw it when we were shopping and thought it would be wonderful.  Sarah opted for a tiny dark chocolate bunny and a pretty set of little mirrors to hang in her new room.

I had the opportunity to stop by the garden center a few times, and spotted all sorts of fun garden gnomes and other treasures, they were all on sale, and I couldn't pass up on this pretty mushroom house.

I haven't had much time to get out to the garden, but we got a mini greenhouse set up, and all the supplies for starting my seeds, which arrived last week.  I am hoping to get out in between rain showers this week to get some of the earlier veggies started.

March was an incredibly busy month, my calendar this year is an Elsa Beskow Calendar, with prints from all her wonderful children's stories, March's picture is from one of my favorite Elsa Beskow stories called Peter's Old House, and I thought this picture was fitting for our busy March.

Peter's Old House is a wonderful story about a man who helps everyone in the village, and when he needs a little help the whole town pitches in, the illustrations are wonderful, and the story is wonderful!

Today I finally flipped my calendar, time to get on with April!  I love this picture as well, I have not read this Beskow story yet, Aunt Green, Aunt Brown, and Aunt Lavendar, but the picture is beautiful and I look forward to reading this story soon.  The picture certainly inspires me to get out into my garden and get it all ready for spring and summer!

I am hoping I have a bit more free time this month, I am eager to get back to my crafting and more blogging! I hope everyone is doing well and had a nice Easter celebration. :)

Thanks for reading!