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December Early Musings

December 2014-6
The Seattle area is nothing if not a cloud watcher’s delight.  For many, it’s too gray for them to ever make it a place to call home.  For me, you can keep the eternal sunshine.  We get our doses here.  We have those things called “seasons” that the people in sunny environments don’t understand.We also have interesting old farm buildings out in the country.  Add these with the “weather” and it can be quite beautiful!
December 2014-12Recent studies have shown that the electro-magnetic charge of grains can substantially increase the range of your television antennas.  They also have the added benefit of, when placed in conjunction with lightning rods, provide a data transfer method to your reanimations at the moment of awareness, thereby decreasing the level of hostility that might be encountered when they awaken from their numerous sleeps.
December 2014-15
Luckily, I got out with the camera before the last storm.  The leaves are now all gone from this little tree in my yard.  But, I had one beautiful late fall day that allowed this pre-winter’s nap shot first.
December 2014-20One of the interesting things about some leaves in the fall is they seem to become almost translucent and can be almost light prisms.  Even stripped of color, they glow with the luminescence of whatever light touches on their surface.
December 2014-23Coming home, the colors of the sky insisted I take a slight detour and capture some of their play across the sky.  Peeking through the brush you get your first glimpse of the dying embers of the sun.
December 2014-25If I had only arrive just a few moments sooner.  The colors had already begun to darken and fade by the time I found a place to park and snap the shots.  Not as vibrant as it was a few minutes earlier, but still quite pretty!
 December 2014-27And stripped of color, it takes on one of those haunted looks!
December 2014-28I believe that lil white peak on the left is Mount Baker.  Not quite as prominent as Ranier, but it’s still pretty impressive.  I think it may actually claim more lives annually than Rainier too.  Cuz people like to climb it.
December 2014-33And the swans have arrived.  As part of their all-inclusive resort package, their first stop is the always popular mud baths to restore their complexions and rejuvenate their bodies from the long flight in.
December 2014-37I have no idea why the have attracted the riff raff from the other side of the field.  I suppose they got tired of cow dung and thought swan dung would be an interesting change-up.  Caviar of the air???
December 2014-39They are rather interesting to watch though.  It seems its a mixed array of blackbirds, swallows, cow birds and others.  Which just goes to show that if birds of different feathers can flock together, why can’t we?
December 2014-42And new flights coming in all the time.  Or, are they on their way out?  They do like to field hop, so its hard to tell.
December 2014-46And just in case you are wondering.  No, some of them did not get carried away with the mud baths.  The tawny ones are the young swans.  They go completely white at about a year old.
December 2014-47Yeah!  I’m Bad!  I’m Bad!!
December 2014-48Just stylin’ with my new dress on!!!
December 2014-51And this pair even came with its own escort.  Wonder if they are royalty?
December 2014-54Now this just had to be shared.  It’s a beet!  And this is not a trick of the camera.  It really is that big!  And it wasn’t even the biggest one they had.  And it didn’t lose flavor from being so large.  I got some roast beets out of it and some beet powder.  Gotta love the organic farms up here.  The cabbages are even more impressive!
December 2014-57And the snow arrived!  My fire pit is getting closer and closer to being done!
December 2014-59Love the first snow with tiny icicles!
And another sunset.  Aren’t the clouds amazing???December 2014-64
December 2014-65Its one of those, I don’t care if its out of focus.  It looks cool and you can rub your eyes after and put Visine in them.  But, it’s still cool looking!
December 2014-75A friend asked how you know if they are swans in the sky.  Its easy.  They have the really, really long necks.  You watch them fly and all you can think about is what a neck ache they must have by the time they get to their destination.
December 2014-78I had to make a trip over to the old brokey down house after the snow.  I have no idea how much longer it is going to remain standing.  So, I am going to try to get some shots in different weather conditions before it finally comes crashing down.
December 2014-79And I met the neighbor this time.  He thought I should take his picture too.  Cute little thing, isn’t he?  He just watched while I took my pictures.
I do think it is starting to fall a bit more.December 2014-80
I like this one!!December 2014-81
This one came out pretty cool too, I think.December 2014-82
December 2014-84I will have to some day create a story around this house.
December 2014-86And I saw this as I was turning around to leave.  I had to pull the camera out again and get a shot.  Just took my breath away.
Even without color, its pretty!December 2014-87

 

 

Clipping and Planting the Garden, Oh My!

 

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Oh Hai!  Seems today is clearing and planting day.  I hope you don’t mind if I just wait here by the window and get some sun.  Naw, we don’t have to worry about that sun cancer thing you humans have to deal with.  I have SPF 85 Sun Protection (Silky Protective Fur)
Gardening 21
My Bad!  I need to FIRST take the camera out and snap some pictures of what I am about to do BEFORE I do it.  So, that leaves me this time with only the after and having to tell what the before was.  Well, the before on this picture had the branches covering half of the steps going down.  I also cut back a lot of the dead underbrush and there is much more yet to do.
 Gardening 4Pretty much the same here.  The branches were clear out across the steps.  Oh, ad the small brown building there behind the bushes?  That’s the pain cave.  Or, at least the part that involves the larger pieces of electronic equipment.  But, there are also speakers in there so I can be a nuisance to the hag.  I am willing to bet that she doesn’t have a taste for Nightwish, Garbage and probably not Pink either.  Gonna try a few more out before I am done.  🙂
 Gardening 3
And the walkway to the back porch?  Totally clear.  Oh okay, I do still have to pull up those weeds at some time.
 Gardening 5And here is the front view of it.  Nice and pretty, isn’t it?
Gardening 25
That’s right!  I’m still chasing the sunlight!  You would be too if it had been as evasive for you as it has for me.  Did you have fun whacking up the bushes?  Any chance you found me any tasty birds under there?  No?  Well, could you at least toss me a couple of treats from the container in the drawer?  Its right behind you, remember?
 IGardening 9 love this tree!  I know, I know!  But the blossoms are such a soft shade of pink.  But they’re flowers and pink is okay on flowers.  I didn’t do any work on the tree today.  I just saw it when I was heading to the garage for something and thought it needed having a picture taken of it.  I am certain I saw one of the branches wave at me to get my attention.  And no, it wasn’t the wind.  That was blowing in the OTHER direction!
Gardening 10 Okay, two pictures!  And she smiled after!
Gardening 1Pretty little purple flower star!!!
 Gardening 17
Okay, so here’s the first bed that has been planted.  We have (lets see how much I can get without looking at the book!)  artichokes, beets, cabbage, radishes, dragon carrots, asparagus, onion, and I think I maybe forgot a couple of things.
 Same bed, just different angle.Gardening 19
Gardening 7 Okay, so here’s one of the herb gardens.  I have no idea what that broad leaf plant is in there with the red stalks, but its pretty, so I will leave it for now.  Many standard kitchen herbs like dill and fennel and sage and cress and parsley. Couple of healing ones like astragalus, and motherwort.  Will be adding more to other areas later.  And I also have some inside boxes with some of the same for easy access while cooking and climate control come next winter.
Gardening 11
You gotta just love beans when they sprout!  They look like little finger puppets that you want to grab hold of and start a conversation in the bean patch with.  “Hey you!  Over there!  Your momma’s a weed and your daddy’s an insect!!”
Gardening 12
More babies.  Springing up and making me such a proud plant mommy!
 Gardening 15
And my little pea plants and some other unknown things here.  The peas are getting big enough to start weaving them in the fencing.  Yay!!
 Gardening 22
Well, I hope you enjoyed your time.  Okay, well, the truth is I am rather indifferent to it.  But, I was hoping if I tried that polite thing, you might toss me a treat.  I’ll be friendlier next time if you take a seat for a while so I can take a nap in your lap while you dote on me.  Think about it, okay?

M

 

April in the Garden

IMG_2350Hello there again!  It’s Cassie, in case you forgot.  Don’t listen to any of the humans who try and tell you that I am Missy Floof.  I will put up with the little princess as I am sure that will result in the generous offerings of tasty treats.  They’re in the drawer in the end table, by the way.  Feel free to fish some out and make an offering.Okay, it seems mom has been working a bit in the garden and there are pictures and stories to tell you about it.  And no pictures of me at the moment.  We don’t need to give mom more evidence to support her theory that I drool on myself.  Its really just an odd play of the light.  Trust me.  Here, let me show you.  *lick lick*  See?  All gone.  Uhm, never there!  Well, carry on!
 April 2014 Camano Island-3
Well this little tree has sure perked up and fluffed out from the bare sticks coming out of the ground a couple of weeks ago.  One on either side of the door.  Guardians and blessings on the comings and goings of the home.
 April 2014 Camano Island-4
And the morning begins with such lovely blue skies with a bounce of clouds off in the distance.  Cloud watching has always been such a wonderful pastime, and I spent far too many years living in an area where there was so little of it.  Here you can spend days and days just watching the amazing clouds that play in the skies.
April 2014 Camano Island-6
The fairies have been quite busy gathering together this lovely blue bouquet.   But it seems there is also a small faction of artist fairies that have painted some Art Nouveau additions they are attempting to sneak into the scene.
 April 2014 Camano Island-8
And what garden would be complete without a place to hang and dry the hearts collected during the weeks escapades?
 Hmmmm?   Scarlet darts!!April 2014 Camano Island-9
April 2014 Camano Island-11I don’t think I will ever get tired of looking at these lovely flowers.  The stark contrasts in the colors with their white petals vivid yellow stamens.  I am a bit proud of this shot as it got a lot of likes on my Google + feed.
 April 2014 Camano Island-12As she looks out upon the garden about her and contemplates the world as she knows it.
April 2014 Camano Island-13The sun in me recognizes and honors the sun that is in you!
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Whee!  New toy!  Mom is so very thoughtful in giving me such new and interesting toys and leaving them in places she knows I will find them.  Not quite as good as treats, but I do enjoy them!
 IMG_2358Oh!  Hi there!  hehehehehe, didn’t see you come in.  No!  I am sure mom meant for me to play with these.  Why else would she have left them laying on the bed where I could find them?  You’re not going to tell her are you?  She might not give me extra treats if you do.
IMG_2364Okay, so here’s the mission for the morning.  To turn the dirt in as many of these compartments as my energy will allow for.  I will obviously not need to engage in any additional modes of exercise this day.
 IMG_2367Sometimes I just utterly amaze myself!!!  I would have been happy to have completed a couple of those squares.  But, I actually managed to get ALL of them done.  And I found many large stones in the process.  I forgot to take a picture of the fire area, but I made a circle about halfway around it.  I figure if I dig up enough stones, maybe I can accumulate enough to make a real fire pit.  On the downside, I didn’t find any bones.  Ah well!  Can’t win them all.
IMG_2369And I have beans sprouting up!!!  Though it seems something ate three of the bean types.  Those critters need to be bones fertilizing my garden!!!
 IMG_2361Ah, you are done?  I have spent a pleasant time watching one of my new big screen kitty TVs that came with mom’s new house.  Hope you had a fun time.  Oh, and before you leave, can you toss me another treat?  This sunbathing is hard work and I have worked up quite an appetite.  Actually, if you could make that two, that would be great!
 

First Spring in the Garden – 2

IMG_2347Cassie decided since this is about her home; granted, she is housebound and not allowed in the yard to play because I am certain she is too much of a charm school ditz to notice a eagle swoomping down on her floofy little body to carry back to it nest for a snack for the baby raptors, but the yard, she should still be the first sight you see when you open the post.  And since she did clean the drool off her ruff a bit better than the last time, I allowed her the privilege.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-7I took a tour of all the blooming things in my yard and enjoyed the small sun breaks to give me the best lighting for the shots.  We’ve been a bit short on the sunshine department this year, but it seems there has been plenty to bring the lovelies out to bask in its glow.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-9I am going to have to do some research on some of these plants.  I have no idea what these blue beauties are, though I am sure my neighbors would snicker at me for the ignorance.  I’ll just look for them the next time I am in the garden department.
Update:  I have just been told that these are grape hyacinth.  So, there is one flower mystery solved.  Yay!!
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-12I must say that there is something so very appropriate about there being bleeding hearts growing in my garden.  I have always found them to be such an intriguing flower.  I know, they’re pink, but pink is okay on a bloom.  Just not so much on my body.
 March 2014 Garden & Around Town-13Another one that will need defining.And this one has a probable identification of sakura.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-17Its one of the most recognized flowers and its name should fall off of my tongue every time I set eyes on it, but I have to admit that for some unknown reason I continuously go blank on the name when I see daffodils.  I do have to agree with my next door neighbor on them, they do make you smile whenever you set eyes on them.  Much like sunflowers but its far too early in the year for them.  I did plant some in the front garden.  I just need to hope that the birds didn’t steal my seeds.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-18Their beauty just takes on an otherworldly stark beauty when you strip them of the colors and are left with
just the lights and shadow of them.  I think flowers may be much like people in that respect.  The color shows their dressing.  The black and white shows their souls.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-21I love the way the cluster of spiky petals just shoots out.  Its like an offering from the plant.  You can almost hear it say “Look what I made for you”.  So you pluck it loose and stick it in your hair while you continue your meandering through the garden.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-22Oh lookie!!!  Steampunk blooms.  I imagine the color is from the rust that has accumulated from all the rain.  They were probably a nice brass or copper or something before the weather set into their stalks.
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Cassie is just checking in to see if you are enjoying the tour.  She would also like to request that you go in to the drawer next to her and get her a treat.  She says you should pay no mind to the human telling you that I don’t need them.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-24Yup!  Its yet another species that I will have to identify.  But they do look like some alien life form or maybe something out of Little Shop of Horrors.  I guess that could make them a nice set of wards to use.
ell this is what it looks like before it decides to rise and shine and show its happy face to the world.
 March 2014 Garden & Around Town-28I suppose I shall have to look into if I really need to remove this lovely little branch.  Then again, maybe I’ll just leave it and see what it does.  I think its quite charming springing up in the eye of the split trunk.  I figure anything that wants attention so badly that it chooses such a prominent place to make its entrance probably deserves to keep that place.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-29
And at the far corner of the property is this old tree trunk with some large bushy thing growing alongside it.  Yeah, yeah, I am sure the “master gardeners” will be grinding their teeth at my lack of knowledge at this point.  But, I will learn and the important thing is that I appreciate the beauty even if I don’t know the name.  At any rate, I cut it back considerably when I realized there was another garden plot that it had grown over.  Of course, with the size and shape of it, it could very well be a grave.  Probably not, but definitely food for future consideration.
 March 2014 Garden & Around Town-30Trying to decide which I like more, the shot with or the shot without color.  Again, I think we are back to the difference between showing the dressing and showing the soul.  Both have their place and are good.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-31I am thinking these might be hellebore like what I have on the front porch.  If I am correct that means I am beginning to learn some of these plants.  So if you are a garden snob and have been laughing at my lack of knowledge up until this point, and I am right on this, then all I have to say is “plllltttzzzzhhh”  I’m learning!
 March 2014 Garden & Around Town-33Though all her siblings gazed upward to bath in the warmth of the sun, she alone allowed her gaze to travel downward to watch the flow of life below.
 March 2014 Garden & Around Town-37She was alone with only the promise of company in the small area she had found to emerge.  Sadness wrapped her and weighed on her causing her to slightly droop her head.  But wait!  Whispers from behind of another promising to soon join at her side.
 March 2014 Garden & Around Town-38Its actually a whirly-gig to go on a fairy’s cap.  They grow them in the shady places of gardens and slip in during the dark of the night to collect them and then weave them into the caps while sitting on the branches of the trees where they can toss pine cones onto the heads of unsuspecting humans as they walk underneath.
 March 2014 Garden & Around Town-39And this is just one of those take your breath away symbols of Spring.  Its as if the opening leaves of the branch are standing sentry over the delicate bud that is their charge.
 March 2014 Garden & Around Town-40This lovely bush is right outside my bedroom window.  Its almost like this charming little forest trail along the side of the yard which ends in this bush.  I can’t wait for the temps to go up just a little bit more so I can begin to open the windows and breath in the fragrance of the nature at night and have the owls sing me to sleep.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-41Again, not sure what these lovely lavender flowers are.  I am still trying to figure out which side of the property line is that they are on.  I suppose I will know the answer to that when the hag puts up her fence.  Which will be none too soon for my liking.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-42I am so glad the former owner thought to put Trilliums in the garden.  They are such a truly lovely little plant.  and I understand that they are one of the first flowers to come out and bloom.  However, it does appear that they seem to be a tasty morsel for some island critter because a couple of hours after I took this picture, about half of them had been eaten.  Maybe it was the same doe that was snacking at the bird feeder.
 March 2014 Garden & Around Town-43Okay I am looking at both of the pictures and the color shot makes me say “oooooooh”  and the grayscale elicits an “Ahhhhhh”
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-45And the little fairies dashed through the garden and dropped little splashes of color into the centers of some of the flowers to bring some dabs of sunshine from the earth to beckon to the heavens for it to send its own golden rays.
March 2014 Garden & Around Town-56
Sparkles of light seemed to play upon the flowers on this tree when the sun peeked out.  It was but a tease by the sun because by the time I grabbed my camera to get a shot of it, most of it had gone away.  But, even without the illumination, it really is a most lovely little tree.
 March 2014 Garden & Around Town-46Driftwood sentinel in my front trail.  Need to figure out the proper way to decorate this one.
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Oh lookie!!!  Rubber band!!!!!

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Woops!  Hi again!  Well, looks like we are done for this time.  Hope you had fun.  Leave a few treats on the way out if you don’t mind.