Happy Thorsday, little friday, thankful thursday and my last regular general membership meeting as President of the JLC!  It’s also almost Kids in the Kitchen time, and long-time readers know I love that event.

 I love snow too, but enough is enough.  I shared my thoughts – and a photo of the furgirls – on their blog.   I’m ready for flowers and being able to step into the parking lot at work without needing to bundle up.

Sweet Mugsy and Fred are still sending me flowers, and I’m still missing them.  They loved snow far more than the girls do, although even Gretchen has warmed up to the white stuff this winter, in a true testament of that old cliche about if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em…

I’m grateful for each and every one of you.  Your support and friendship is a blessing in my life, and I look forward to having the time to repay your kindness very soon.

In the meantime, can we call the leaves compost and pretend I’m making sure the Boy-dogs’ garden is getting ready to grow beautiful flowers?

Will you share what you’re pretending?


Fall Flowers

Locally, the weather definitely got the memo that fall is moving in officially this weekend.  Here are some shots from last weekend’s walks.





The older I get, the more I appreciate wild flowers, but the fur-girls were more interested in the horses… or something in the pasture.

I’m also developing a leopard print problem.  If animal prints are the new neutrals, is there an overboard point?

Wow it’s Wednesday

UntitledHow did it get to be Wednesday already!?  Monday was a birthday blur, right through the JLC board meeting.  Thanks to everyone who sent wishes, cards, etc.!  It was a truly lovely day.  Having a summer birthday means I grew up thinking my birthday was a holiday, because I never had to go to school on my birthday, so the first time I had to WORK on my birthday was sobering.  I have to say though, having a meeting on my birthday turned out to be nice after all.  I would never have invited a dozen girlfriends to toast me, but it was sweet, and I enjoyed my flowers, bubbly, presents, cupcakes…

Yesterday, my computer had a six-hour flu.  Thankfully, Uncle’s wife is an IT girl extraordinaire and she was able hack past the virus to run the appropriate scan and restore order.    I’d brought in my iPad… just in case.  I completely drained my iPhone battery trying to keep up with a couple of new developments in League business.

I’m very sorry I failed to wish my Canadian pals a happy day on Monday.   Canada is a great neighbor, and I’ve always enjoyed celebrating with them on July 1!

Who has exciting plans for the 4th?

Growing Good Luck

UntitledThe Knight has a knack for finding 4-leaf clovers.  I can’t tell you how many he has pressed in his wallet, or how many more are lurking in drawers and such around the house.   So when he told me there were SEVERAL at our back door, I rolled my eyes… and went to look.

Generally, I can’t find them even when he points them out, but I was able to pluck one all by myself before he weed-eated (?!) them away.   More sprang back up right away, so the other day, I decided to see if we had a little shamrock patch, and it would seem so.

UntitledI want to be clear… these are two different clumps of specialness.  They’re within a couple of feet of each other though. 

Do you have an eye for finding 4-leaf clovers?  The Knight insists they look so different they’re easy to spot.  I don’t know about that; I used to think I was good at those “find what’s different” pair of images featured in so many children’s magazines and such, but I just don’t know anymore!

Maybe Haddon Woods needs to be re-named Shamrock Woods?

UntitledAnd just because it’s pretty and was RIGHT THERE with the good luckers, my favorite azalea.  It’s still kinda’ small; it doesn’t quite get enough sunlight and like everything flora in the woods, it has to endure the deer and their snacking damage.

What’s growing and blooming in your world?

What the flower?!

photo.JPGThis is actually a royal purple, but that hue is so hard to capture, either through photos or editing…  I think it’s a weed and not even a true wildflower, but if you know what it is, I’d like to know too!  It stands about 30″ high, if that helps?  It’s growing wild along the edge of our property, up the edge of the neighbor’s driveway.  (No, not THAT neighbor or the wonderful trail neighbors…) 

Edited to add:  Thanks, Nancy!  It is indeed columbine, and in fact, this photo is identical.  Wonder if my neighbor would mind if I dug up a couple of plants for my house?

In the as Chan tries to clothe herself saga, the beige blouse I own is an epic fail, the PANK blouse I bought yesterday is even worse, and a sequined pewter tank I own might could work if I decide I’m up to doing sparkles and lace in the same outfit.  Right now, I’m thinking I’m going to just go with the dress I bought to wear for the dinner weeks ago.

444f35f3451a97fb41528f9b2000bda2_bestRight?  There’s nothing wrong with that, is there?  It’s not ubber fancy, but it’s pretty, happy, comfortable… and in my closet ready to go.  In fact, it may be machine washable. 

After wearing “winter clothes” on Monday, it’s supposed to be near 90 today.  Crazy weather.

What has you puzzled today?

They Remembered!

Some of you are well aware that I don’t believe in coincidences.  Everything happens for a reason, according to a master plan…

photo.JPG… and the dearly departed boy-dogs remembered me on Mother’s Day.  Mugsy’s red roses are in blooming overdrive.  Like most of our landscaping, the roses were neglected and not pruned over the winter, but they seem quite happy in their wild, neglected state.   It really made my day to see the roses open up right at Mother’s Day. 

No coincidence, to be sure.


photo.JPGFred’s yellow roses aren’t as happy or as prolific as Mugsy’s blooms, but that’s kinda’ appropriate, as Fred was generally more reserved than his alpha, older, terrier brother.   They’re both still very pretty, sweet-smelling flowers.

If you are a mom, I hope you had a wonderful Mother’s Day.

How was your weekend?

Floral Memories

photo.JPGAs soon as the snow melted last week, these beauties were showing off for us.   I don’t recall planting a single crocus bulb, but the prolific purples have spread like wildfire.  Some years there’s a white one or two, but this year, I didn’t see any.  The purple may have choked them out!

Interestingly, they’re most prevalent over Fred’s side of the memorial garden.  That’s curious, because Sissy wears purple, and always has.  So Sissy’s signature color covers Fred’s burial spot.  Weird…  (They’re both basset hounds, if you haven’t been visiting long enough to remember Fred.)

Thanks Hooey, for the flowers.  (Yes, all of my dogs have a host of nicknames!)  Do you have blooms yet?

Hounds, the common denominator


Baby Sissy celebrating her spin on Boxing Day, 12-07

Happy Boxing Day!   I miss December 26th at my stepmom’s homeplace.  I miss the spoonbread, the Virginia country ham biscuits (really… all ham biscuits should be two-bite-sized and feature thinly sliced, very tender country ham), her SPECIAL egg nog, cheese biscuits (think cheese “cookie” with a half pecan pressed on top), and tremendously good cheer.  Knowing Boxing Day would happen made it easier to be a good sport and work Christmas Day when I was a paid firefighter.

Courtesy of Write Meg

Courtesy of Write Meg

Am I the only one who has food associations for holidays?  Even though I don’t like goose, I’m still a little sad there’s been no Christmas goose for years and years.   When we were much younger (read: teens?) my lone male cousin on my maternal side and his father provided said goose for our family fete, straight from their own river access, right there on the farm.  Now, I’m quite accustomed to my sister’s beef tenderloin for Christmas dinner.  I’m also all about local food customs, and some say spoonbread, along with the Virginia country ham, originated right here…  The same formerly-goose-getter cousin introduced us all to his adult hometown’s stuffed ham.  (Don’t judge.  I hate kale and still thought this was quite tasty.)

photo.JPGNext up is a pretty basset stamp a friend used on the envelope of her Christmas card.  I think I need to find one!  I just love a freckled basset… 

I’m sure Sissy would love to have a stamp.  Of course, then Gretchen would want one too…  hmmm…  I think I’d get plenty of use out of them though, don’t you?


Next up is this fun floral arrangement.   I got my first “mum dog” when I had back surgery, so when another local basset-mom was in the hospital, I knew just what she needed.  Our florist asked only for an extra day to figure out the ears and other basset modifications, and the result was definitely worth it!   Wouldn’t that cheer you up?

Well, this post is long enough, so tune in tomorrow for the final chapter in our tale of how the love of hounds makes the world go ’round.  We hope you had a great Christmas.  Here in the Woods, this is the second day of Christmas, and my true love is giving me – well, my beloved car – a transmission flush and some other necessary maintenance.   Does anyone else celebrate Christmas through Epiphany?

A good day…

July 2012 002I’ve said since I learned that a local friend was due on July 17th that the 18th is a good day to be born.  See, my teen years BFF was born today… a few years ago.  (Hem.)  No, you don’t get a photo, because all of my photos for the last few years include her precious boy, and I don’t put kiddo photos on my blog.

Instead, you get a pretty photo of one of my birthday flowers. 

Now… what’s your go-to baby shower (or just welcome baby) gift?

Birthday Highlights

Why yes, it is well over a week after my birthday, and nearly two weeks since the birthday festivities kicked off with the arrival – in my office – of my first gift.  gMarie and the Knight were in cahoots, and a pink pearl wisteria (not in bloom, so no photo) has come to live in the woods.   I can hardly wait to see it in bloom, but I hear that indeed…  I’ll have to wait.  Hrmph.

That was followed by quite the birthday eve eve on Friday.  My sweet sis sent my packages to work for me to open early, and I didn’t wait a moment to slap on my Count Me Healthy bracelet.   I’m currently using it to count my veggie servings, but I can also see it being used to count rows in a short lace repeat (knitting)…  The beads slide.  Not too easily, but that’s the point; they’re counters, not floating charms!  

She also gave me a really pretty commerically made lace bolero, but you’ll have to wait until I wear it and get good photos.

The Friday goodness continued with lunch with Amy.   While Amy’s gifts – and cards – are always thoughtful and spot-on, I’d much rather share a photo of her fabulous made from a vintage pattern (by her talented mom!) attire. 

It was beastly hot and I will confess that I feared the heat would cancel our date.  I think Amy was pretty darned close to miserable, but she looked great and we had a fabulous afternoon together.  I suspect that will be our last lunch before Zoe arrives, so it was an extra-special way to kick off my birthday celebrations.

I’m glossing over the flowers and Edible Arrangements that also arrived at work on Friday.  That’s not to say I don’t treasure them, but this post is long enough without me reconstructing every moment of my birthday giftings.

July 2012 010Grace also sent a special birthday package with much goodness, but Sissy has insisted that I share the cute monster, who does happen to be napping on the shawl, also from Grace.  As with the felted basset I got in May, the purple monster is currently hiding out in a safe, high-up location.  The girls have never bothered one of my “toys” but I do have to take measures to assure they understand that certain items are MINE, even if they do show up in a color that MIGHT lend one to believe they were intended for a fur-girl…

July 2012 005

Sue and her pack also sent a very special box, and I’m sure some of the goodies will show up in other posts, but the card she sent was without a doubt the most must have been made for me commercial card ever.  If not for the apple-green collar I know Sis has NEVER worn, I’d wonder if someone stole a photo of the DIVA on a sand crab hunt!

There will also be a special post on another day…  the Knight found me what appears to be the bag of my (current) dreams.  But you’ll have to wait until I finish putting it through its paces…

Thanks to everyone who helped make my birthday one of the best ever.   I wish I could thank each and every person who sent a card, gave me a gift, or left a note on my Facebook wall, but there are only so many hours in a day…