Dreaming of Gardens

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We have two wood stoves at my house, and this is how we heat in winter.  While that’s all well and good, we also have to take some trees down every year, as well as get some logs delivered in order to have enough wood to last a winter.  Luckily, we’re nearing the end of taking our own trees down, and have only a few more to go.  Since we’ve already rented a wood chipper this spring, I know that we’re finished with the trees this year.  Unfortunately, we needed to take down some smaller trees in the backyard due to their being a hazard.  Because of this, we now have some room back there that will be rather bare once we get the trees cut up and the wood stacked.

So, I’ve been dreaming of gardens.  You know, those fantastic English gardens that look so wonderfully peaceful?  Those gardens.  However, as much as I dream of having gardens like that, I know that I just don’t have the ability to create them.  In my head, I’m the most artistic person ever.  In reality, not so much.  I do have a spatial-relation problem (I can’t picture how something is going to look), but I also don’t know much about gardens.  Years ago, I had a large vegetable garden, and I did manage that pretty well.  However, I’ve never planted flowers and have no idea how to go about it.  So, for the moment I’m just dreaming of gardens.

If you have any books for inept beginners that I could read in the subject, I’d be grateful if you’d let me know.  Meanwhile, here are some photos of wonderful gardens to enjoy!

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Spring

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Even though we had what you could only call a late winter – very little snow until the end of February, then feet of snow in March, I have the feeling that Spring may actually be here at last.  Of course, we broke the temperature records for heat this week, but thankfully that was just one day.   As I’m writing this, it’s a pretty chilly 60° out with quite a breeze.  However, I’m hoping that we’re all done with the snow – I hope.  Connecticut’s been known to suffer blizzards in April.

Here are some pictures I’ve taken in the last few days showing that Spring just may be here.  Enjoy!

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The Solace of Nature

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I’ve written quite a lot about nature.  I love it, find that time spent enjoying nature, even looking at pictures of nature makes me feel so much better.  I’ve been taking pictures of my yard lately and thought that I’d share some of them with you.

This last picture is my favorite.  I still can’t believe that it came out like this.  I had woken up to a foggy morning.  Hope you enjoyed them.

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What I Have to be Happy About This Week

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I can’t say that this week was so fantastic, however, it was a pretty good week.  I’ve got some pictures of flowers to share from our visit to the Florence Griswold Museum.  I also finally used my “new” steamer, so I’ll share that simple, easy “recipe”, if you can even call it that.  And, best of all, I’ve gotten a new computer that so far I haven’t broken – yay me!

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Steamed Vegetables:

I just cut up some squash, zucchini, onions, peppers, broccoli and mushrooms and placed them into the steamer (we have a small one, so I did this a few times), which was already in a pot with an inch or so of boiling water, and steamed the veggies for about two and a half minutes.  Then, I served them on quinoa and brown rice along with some garlic sauce that we had left over from our Chinese meal from the last time we ordered.  You can use any veggies that you want.  It was delicious, if I do say so myself!

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The new Destiny add-on dropped this week, and yes, I did play it on Wednesday (the first day it was available).  Fun, fun!  I’m “such” a gamer.

I’m back to working on getting my coaching certificate now that I’ve got a computer.  My goal had been September 30, but now I’m changing it to October 15, since I lost a full week of studying.  Ah, computers – they’re great when they work!

Hope you found something to be happy about this week!  Enjoy your weekend and be happy!

Saturday Adventures

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On Saturday, my daughter and I got to visit the Florence Griswold Museum.  It was the one of the last days of their “Artists Garden: American Impressionism and the Garden Movement 1887 -1920” exhibition.  Not only were they some of the nicest Impressionistic paintings I’ve seen, but the museum has also re-created Florence Griswold’s house and gardens.  Florence operated a boarding house on the Lawrence River in Old Lyme, CT.  She opened her doors to various artists who were enthralled with painting her gardens, the river and other notable locations in and near Old Lyme.

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The results of these paintings can be appreciated both in the museum and in her home, where the artists painted the paneling on her walls to show their appreciation of her kindness.  While Florence was not wealthy, she enjoyed a rich life by way of the life-long friendships she had with some of the most famous of American artists.

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It was a peaceful place to visit, and we had a great time.  We’d never been there before, but will be going back soon to see their next exhibit.  It was such a nice day, seeing great art and walking the beautiful, quiet grounds.  Days like that go way too fast, but here are some photos we took of the gardens.  Enjoy!

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Garden Tales and Photos

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Like many people, I have an Instagram account and I often post photos of my flowers, yard and trees.  The way I pose my photos makes my yard and flowers look absolutely wonderful.  As a matter of fact, when we first moved into our house some 23 years ago, the yard looked like a park.  There were no dandelions, no weeds, and the gardens were gorgeous.  The people we bought the house from had three boys who were sent out to care for the lawn and weed all day every Saturday in the spring, summer and fall.

When we bought the house, I was in a “high-risk” pregnancy with a two-year-old.  It would have fallen to me to garden and weed, and I was medically prohibited from doing so.  Fast-forward a few years, and I was finally ready to weed, only I couldn’t.  I was suffering from allergies to everything outdoors, so that every time I weeded, I was sick for two weeks.  My gardens went to hell in a tissue-filled basket, and I was busy concentrating on the vegetable garden my Dad helped me put in.

Years later, my children are grown, and I’ve recently discovered that I can weed again without getting sick (a nice side effect of being Vegan – the allergies are still there, but much less severe), and the gardens are pretty much the biggest mess you can imagine.  The most surprising thing about this neglect is that my day lilies still bloom, the lilacs have survived and the wild flowers are having a field day.  So, in all this messiness, do you think that I am running out and weeding?  No.  I suffer from the thought that many of the weeds have beautiful flowers, dandelions have replaced the grass, and many of the flower-less weeds have roots so long that you can never pull the entire thing up!  The pictures that I put on my Instagram account make my yard look great.  However, they are taken from certain angles, are close up shots of individual flowers, and at certain times of days.  I wonder how many other people do the same thing.  My account is such that it’s full of positive quotes, happiness and nature shots.

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Nice trees, and the grass looks mostly green.

I am dreaming of one of those yards full of beautiful gardens and gorgeous green lawns.  I can’t imagine going through all the work to achieve that, but it is a dream of mine.  How about you?  Do you have a garden you dream about?