Tuesday, August 27

Using the Lasagna Method to Easily Prepare a New Garden Area

Read about this method in a recent issue of This Old House magazine.  Bet it'll work great to prepare the soil for the new butterfly/dragonfly plants I'm hoping to try:
Starting a New Garden Bed Using the Lasagna Layering Method

Newspaper, coffee grounds, vegetable and fruit clippings--what could be easier?

Friday, August 23

Amazing Anole?

All summer I've been enjoying several blue-tail skinks sunning themselves on my back steps.  Today is the first time I saw this little guy; he was only about 3" long from nose to tail.  Sorta looks like an anole--does anyone know for sure?

Thursday, August 15

Butterflies are Free

They're free to watch in gardens and, with a low-cost membership to your local botanic garden, you can learn about them for free.  Add a friend who treats you to lunch and your whole, enjoyable day can be a freebie.

Each of the three classes I took, for free, at Lewis Ginter Botanic Garden Lewis Ginter this summer was wonderful, especially since they were given by the same engaging and data-intense teacher, Butterfly Barbara.
We learned about the most common butterflies and moths seen in Virginia, their host plants and nectar plants.  Where can I get some milkweed???

Plus, my buddy, Joan, took the class with me and surprised me with an invitation to lunch--for free!
At The Continental on Grove Avenue

What a gorgeous day!

This is how I felt after lunch!

Sunday, August 11

New Exercise Idea--Do Some Farm Work

My SIL, DD and DH got some good exercise yesterday at the farm:

Exercising on the Farm--Racing Against the Rain Clouds

Friday, August 9

Mom and Pop Organizational Methods

On a trip to Charlottesville to pick up a piece of furniture our friends treated us to a de-lish lunch.  The hostess, knowing my love of organization, excitedly showed me her spice drawer:

If you look closely you'll see that anise is at the top left and the lower right spice might be tarragon.  Yep, they're arranged alphabetically.  Go Sheila!

To be fair to her engineer husband, who was born with the D for Detail gene type, I'm including a photo of a section of his shop:
Please notice that the C-clamps are all oriented in the same direction.  Go Bill!

Monday, August 5

Big Beauty

We have a canal walk in Richmond and it is being developed more and more over time.  Went to a restaurant near the canal walk with a gaggle of girlfriends for lunch today and was delighted to see this enormous mural, by Ed Trask, painted on one of the flood wall panels.  Beauty all around, and it was big.

Saturday, August 3

Don't Be a Scaredy Cat

Walking around Lexington, VA with a good girlfriend on Friday was glorious--warm temps but not humid, bunches of fine arts/crafts shops (favorite:  Artists in Cahoots ) and a creative spot for lunch (Blue Sky Bakery) right on the edge of the Washington and Lee campus.  We were too early for the First Fridays Art Gallery walk and wine tasting event but it was a treat to visit so many open galleries.

Driving south on Route 11 to Buchanan was beautiful and we easily found the swinging bridge there.
After the initial trepidation of entering via that awkward slope, it was delightful and only a little "swayie" but not really swinging.  Once we arrived on the far side we were treated to a passing train only 30' or so away. Great tootin' horn and rumbling on the tracks.
 Via the public boat launch and nearby water outfitters there were lots of ways to enjoy the James River.

What's Not to Love?

 Rhennie was sitting on the top shelf in the closet we recently attacked, waiting for someone to love on her.  Closet Rescue True to form, my DD wasn't interested in keeping her so we quickly looked up comparable solds on Ebay and learned we could only sell her for very little.  What to do?

An all-call to friends on Facebook did not yield immediate requests to adopt her, so I started thinking about a new neighbor's granddaughter--she has flaxen blond hair and might love to have her.  I almost called my neighbor and then the answer came via Facebook--my good friend for 20+ years had a 6 yo granddaughter visiting her and might like to have Rhennie.  My hopes were high.

Sure enough, the little sweetie adored Rhennie from first hug.  Happy Success!  But, there was a bonus.  She was just the right size for the purple unicorn Halloween costume my mom had made about 25 yrs ago and she has a younger brother would might love the green dinosaur costume my mom made for my DS at the same time.  Super success!  It's so much fun to give stuff away, especially with happy endings like this.