Sunday, December 9, 2012

"Deck the Walls with Boughs of Holly..."

Yes, Walls.

Because of Miss Exuberance, we are being completely sane and not putting up a tree.

Miss Exuberance; aka Sofie.

I decorated the other night, Pandora blasting Christmas Carols and Baroque Music.

Pile of mini ornaments waiting to be put up:

Of course I had help...Penny holding down the ornament wrappers.

Finished Garland:

The Angel in the center of the wreath:

Snowmen in the Dining Room:

So when I and hubby sit in the living room, it's all nice and festive.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Blogging Sloth

Yep, that's me.

I have two plants that I must write down right now lest I lose the tags and forget them forever.

Euphoria graminea - Tan Speckled Pot, white center blooms.  Clibrachoa - Same pot, yellow blooms.  I'm trying to overwinter the tall plant (don't know what it is)

Euphorbia graminea - Diamond Frost.  What a stunning container plant!  Stayed nice all summer long.  Lots of blooms all the time.  Nice low height to accent taller plants.  I'm over-wintering the plant that I had with it.  I did not keep that tag though.

Another great performing plant was Clibrachoa in white, pink, and yellow.  I liked them so much I accidentally bought a set twice.  Brought it home and went - "Well, it'll make a nice grouping."

Here's a gratutioius picture of Sofie the Rottweiler from about the same time frame.

I remember reading somewhere to leave your carrots in the ground over the winter and just dig them up as you need them.  I don't think they meant years like this where it has been pretty dang warm for Northern Idaho.  Look at these monsters I dug up today!

And here's a gratutious picture of Penny around the same time frame (Why, yesterday!)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Just another day in the yard...

Life in the garden has been good.  The hummingbirds have come back a little, but not enough for me to get some shots.  I saw a fledgling Robin out yesterday.  This is a buddy of his resting on a garden hoe on my hill.

Pumpkin loves to scratch on my raised beds.  I think it's great.  I'd hate to have her trying this in the house.  Sometimes she's even coordinated enough to balance on that one inch to sharpen the claws.

 Thanks, I feel better now.

 Goofy Sofie and Penny after a romp around the yard.

Kermit found this toad out front, so brought him to the pond.  He immediately started climbing up the pond plant.

Something about this looks likes it is out of a fairytale.

 Hollyhock from the garden at full bloom.  First one I've ever been able to see.  The deer would always get them before the blooms 

Friday, July 6, 2012

Challenges and Joys...

Having a new young dog is awesome and a little tiring at times.  She is a counter surfer, even bolder than Farro if those of you who knew how Farro was can imagine.

So, I set up a Sofie Defense System.  Those cans have pennies in them.  In theory, when they knock them over, it will frighten them and they'll stop putting their paws up there and stealing things.  OH, like two servings of fresh Cherry Cobbler.  

I see two problems with this and Sofie.  One, she isn't phased by many noises now that she's acclimated.  Two, no more than a few minutes after this shot, I was sitting at the dining room table.  Sofie went over to these cans, daintily put her paws inbetween them and sniffed the cans.  Did not even wobble them.

So we'll see.  I'm sure she'll try to get up there at some point in time today.

Out in the garden today:
Sofie with her Koi

Penny being a flat dog.

Penny by a garden box of Basil, Sweet Peppers, Sunflowers, Cucumbers and Beans.

Bean Sprouts

Cucumber Seedlings

Sofie's big paw and my white foot.

How to tell that it's early and that I haven't had coffee yet.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

A Rainy Sunday Morning

Perfect for lazing about.

Luey and I pitted a lot of cherries yesterday.  Kermit is making Cherry Cordials from part of them.

I still need to pick the other half of the tree with a tallish.

Here's half of the cherries.  Sofie thinks they are OK, but not great.  Snow Peas, those are great.

I decided that I am not going to let Sofie up on the sofas.  One, she's big.  Two, she needs better manners first.  So for cuddling, I sit on the floor.

I have a Hollyhock plant that is blooming this year.  I have never witnessed a Hollyhock bloom here, because the deer love them.  I got one in my garden, it made me happy!

Made some cherry tarts this morning, came out meh.  The dough is too salty.  Store bought.  Won't do that again.  Waiting for the menfolk to get up.  Then they are going to cook breakfast for us.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Busy as a Bee!

But, no Bee pictures. We had some rain, and then some great sunny days, so I've been really busy in the garden. Took out the Snow Peas and the Lettuce. Put in Basil, beans, and cucumbers. Planted some more peppers, and freshened up the planters. Put out carrot seed too.  Tidied up the walkways and did some general maintenance.

Peppers and Strawberries

Basil transplants, Cucumber and Beans are from seed.

A Pumpkin!

I'm going to kidnap my youngest from Moscow today to meet the new pooch.  Everyone have a great weekend!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Fabulous Lillies

I had some time to go through Sofie's vet records and discovered that her 1st Birthday was yesterday!   It seems that when she was 9 weeks old, she weighed 10lbs.  At 5months, she weighed 35lbs.  Big Puppy!

She's a smart dog, but very shy and fearful right now.  I'm waiting for her to become comfortable with all the changes, then I'm sure the Rottweiler adolescent BRAT will appear.

She loves running around the garden, and is very aware of walking/running areas vs garden space.

My Lillies came into bloom!  I gathered all of them up from the garden here and there, and planted them together.  The smell is wonderful when you walk by, or have the breeze blow it by you as we sit by the pond.


 New Fish - the small one.


Sunday, June 24, 2012

Nice Day All the Way Around.

Sofie and Penny are getting along great.  Sofie met two of our neighbors and one of their dogs.  She just loves everyone.

I like getting up early, but Sofie is ridiculous.  4:30am today.  I waited until 6:30 to feed them.  Sofie kept staring at me, and even barked at me once.

Did some training, took a nap, then went out to the garden.  The lettuce needed to be pulled (sniff), and some weeding.  There's actually a lot that needs to be done out there, but I don't feel like it.  I need to decide what I'm going to put in that bed when the snow peas get pulled up.  Penny is trying to pull them up daily, but has failed.  That dog just loves snow peas.

My Lillies have bloomed!  It smells wonderful when you walk by them.  I'll get some pictures tonight and put them in here.  Probably some pics of Sofie and Penny too.  Imagine that.

Changed out the hummingbird feeders.  I read up on it, and I need to be changing them way more often.  When it's hot, every day.  So I'm going to not fill them, and just replace every day.

Sofie had her first FRAP!  Zoom, zoom around the gardens.  She caught on where the areas are that she can't go really quickly.  Penny chased her around, they wrestled a little.  Now they are both crashed in the living room.

Pumpkin actually came in today and hung around in the same vicinity as Sofie.  I keep letting Sofie know that the cat is "Mine."  The cat has the whole upstairs as a safe area, so I'm not too worried.  Sofie did not chase her when they met up in the yard last night.  Sofie sat and stayed very nicely while the cat was crossing the yard.

We're still working on "Down."  Sit is good.  Stay?  Uh, that needs a lot of work.  I'm also going to teach "Place" in the kitchen because she likes to lay in the MIDDLE of the kitchen when I'm in there.  Not so convenient.  

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Jaw Jousting at the Fleuron's

She's HOME!

I was very nervous about this part.  It was Noon Pacific time when we arrived.  It's hot out, so I decided to use that to my advantage.

Introductions I kid you not, took an hour.  I was expecting more like a few weeks.  Penny thinks that this is her dog.  As of now, they are both sacked out in front of me.

Penny started barking when I pulled into the driveway, which is usual.  So I put her in the house and put Sofie in the dog yard.  Unloaded the car.  Put up baby gates, then just left the dog exit open so Sofie could come in and out with no contact with Penny.

Eventually, Penny noticed there was another dog.  Took her about 5 minutes.  Then they looked and sniffed through the baby gate for a little bit.  Did the "Look at the New Dog" treats.  Penny started whining and play bowing like mad.  I continued to unload and just let them look at each other.

Then I decided to go out and water.  Penny in the human yard, Sofie in the dog yard.  Sofie and Penny proceeded to whine and play bow for another 15 minutes.  Sofie also checked out the bunnies, the garage, and sniffed all over.

When they were both relaxed, I stood over by the dog yard and did the treat thing with both of them for awhile.  After a time they started ignoring each other, so I opened the dog yard gate and just stood there.  Penny went and sniffed, Sofie was completely willing to let her be boss, and there was not an once of wariness  in either of them.  At that moment, they started tearing around the grass chasing each other, then ignoring each other off and on.  Penny would come and play a little, then do her rounds, then come back again.  Sofie started following her around to check the place out.  Penny and her drooled all over each other.  Literally.

Since it was hot, we came inside, Penny and I showed her around.  You are not going to believe this - Sofie LOVES Kongs.  Penny hates Kongs.  I showed a stuffed duck to Sofie and she looked at me like I was crazy.  So they aren't even interested in each other's toys.  Holy Dog Gods, did I luck out or what.  I cannot keep the Kong on the floor though, Sofie got a little protective of it when Penny walked by it.  So up it goes unless she's actively chewing under supervision.

I am armed with a water bottle just in case.  They both dislike the water bottle.  Good. They both sat for treats together.  Penny will always be treated first, fed first, and have sofa privileges.  Sofie will have to be a good girl for a long time to earn that.  Oh, and Sofie also answers to "Butthead."

Pumpkin came half way down the stairs, took one look at the dog, looked at me, and Me-owed like "What the FRICK is that?"  Went outside without an introduction at this point.  I know the cat is going to take a lot longer.

Sofie is konked out, Penny is in Flat Dog mode on the hard wood floor, starting to snooze.  Happy, Tired Dogs.

Even though it went well, do not worry MSP people.  I will have "Constant Vigilance!" for quite some time to avoid possible problems until we are all settled into routine.

Now I need to get Sofie to understand that this weird chair of mine must come down at some point, so she needs to lay a little to the right.  Right now her head is right under the recliner part.

Friday, June 22, 2012

She's with me!

Sofie and I are chilling out at a Motel 6 in Butte.  I got up at 6:30, chatted with the owner of the Vagabond in  Anaconda, MT - very nice lady.  Clean room, and I got a good night's sleep.  They had a little breakfast waiting for their customers, so I got some cereal and coffee.

Thank goodness, because it turned into a really long day.  Fueled up the car, bought a Starbucks Frappacino, two granola bars, and headed out.

The land around here is gorgeous and it's a very easy drive.  When I got into Idaho Falls, I called the rescue lady.  The poor thing was transporting my dog with a stomach flu!  So we decided we'd meet in a town called Victor.

We traded info and the dog, and back on the road we went.  Sofie loves her crate.  I can't say how much easier that makes everything - Thank you Big Sky Rottweiler Rescue for training that!

I must say I stand corrected about a point of view I've always had about Clearwater County.  I always say "It's in the middle of nowhere."  OH, NO IT'S NOT.  The drive from Missoula to Idaho Falls - THAT'S in the middle of nowhere.  Sometimes there would be signs to off-ramps saying "No Services."  Better than "Keep Driving Fool."

Sofie and I arrive in Idaho Falls, and she's still kind of spazzing out, so I went to the front desk and said a magic sentence that got me out of our reservation with no charges.  "My brand new 11mo old 65 lb Rottweiler is somewhat freaking out.  I thought it would be best if we kept driving."

The front desk person did not hesitate as her eyes got really big and said  "Done, have a nice drive and be safe."

We stopped at a rest stop about 120miles in, and it had flags waving in the wind.  She did not make it past those flags.  Plus, the highway traffic was also bothering her.  So we went for a quick walk, potty break for me and her (I used the bathroom thank you very much)   Then got back in the car, 170 more miles and 5:30pm, and...Here we are.

Things I noticed about her on the drive:  
She does not like the band Bush.  She likes Linkin Park and 3rd Eye Blind.  She DETESTS the windshield wipers when the thump across the window.  She's a nester.  Took all the blankies I had in the crate and arranged them into a butt rest and a pillow.  She does not like loud noises.  We'll go out for two more mini-walks, then snoozerino!  She's was already snoring a little while ago.

I thought she might look a Little like Hanna, but she looks a LOT like Hanna.  
Very different personality though.

What a dweeb.  We'll work on prettier sits.

Aren't I cute?


Thursday, June 21, 2012

First Leg of Getting Sofie - Done.

Things I love about Montana:  Mountains, hills, small towns.  The SPEED LIMIT!!!  Whooo Hooo!  I haven't driven 80mph in a looooong time.  It was a gorgeous drive.

Drove 5 hours towards Idaho Falls today.  Went 90 towards Butte, stopped in Anaconda.  Neat little town. Had dinner, now settling in for the night at a Mom and Pop Motel right by the highway.

Tomorrow, get up early (well, normal) and head off to Idaho Falls to pick up Sofie!  Brought a camera.  Forgot poo bags, so I picked up some small trash bags at Albertsons this evening.

I can hardly wait to meet her!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

I like rain just as much as the next person...

But hey, it's JUNE for cryin' out loud!

My plants are not complaining though.  All the transplants are doing quite well, and the greenery is exploding.

I saw a squirrel steal three or four strawberries today.  Some Grosbeaks, and 1 hummer at the feeder.

Pictures from last week:

Snow peas, cilantro, lettuce, broccoli raab:

Lupine and Hollyhock.  I've never actually seen a Hollyhock bloom, because it's always come up where the deer can get it.  One showed up in the side yard, so I look forward to that.

View from my hill.  

Notice the gap in the picket fence?  It fell down this Spring.  There is a welded wire fence up right now.  We're hoping to get that fixed this summer.

Hopefully I'll be complaining about the heat in a week or two.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

What a Beautiful Day!

Got up bright and early today, looking forward to a busy schedule, although self imposed.
Kermit compared me to a hyper chihuahua, and I'd have to say he was right.  Had my two cups of decaf coffee, looked around the yard and made plans.

It's been awhile since we did the whole A Road walk, so we decided to do that after a really nice breakfast.

Off to the store, then back to play in the dirt!

Today was the one day I use a power tool that I love no matter how noisy and dirty using it is.  Chipper shredder, how wonderful you are.

I shredded all of the leaves that were collected in Fall of 2011.  We bag them and pile them up and just let them sit.  They're nice and dry when I go to shred them in the Spring.

A few years ago, I was having the darndest time starting the thing.  So I took it to our local motorcycle shop, and they put a primer on it for me.  Works great since!

I put out the shredded leaves as garden mulch.  Then I chipped/shredded a big pile of garden remnants from Fall.

So I'm very happy to be in and blogging.  That was a physically busy day for me!

Now on to pictures!  I put out the hummingbird feeders this week and we already have resident hummers.  I think one might be a pair, the aggressive one doesn't bother her at all when she is feeding at HIS feeder.  He's a Rufus, first one I've ever had take up living in my garden.  I also saw another one that I think might be a Calliope.  No pictures of that one yet though.

Obligatory Picture of my Cat Pumpkin and Pooch Penny

I don't buy fancy pots for plants very often, but I really liked this one. We turned on the waterfall about April.

I've seen an itty bitty frog, and an itty bitty toad.  Earl has left the premises.  We had a good size thunder storm with lightning one night in April and then the next day he was just...gone.  Hope you found a nice lady frog to run off with Earl.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Hello Spring! Back to Blogging!

I'm back!  But my camera is sitting at school, so you'll have to wait for pictures.

Earl the toad is out and about again, the fish are swimming around instead of just sitting there.  I even put Herkemer P Bunsworthy out in the x-pen while I gardened today.

Today I did a special piece of gardening.  I have owned two very lovely Rottweilers in my life, Hanna and Farro.  Both have passed on and their ashes have been sitting in my office for a long time.  I never quite knew what to do with them.

This past winter, I finally decided I would bury their ashes in my garden because they loved hanging out, watching the world go by while I gardened.  They both sat on the left and right hand sides of the front fence, where they had a good view.  In the left corner is a David Austen rose that blooms in pink starting in May.

We were at a garden center yesterday, and I found two miniature forsythia bushes.  Bright yellow blooms in the very early Spring.  In the summer, they will be 3x3' glossy leaved bushes that will hide the lower stems of the David Austen rose.  I dug triple deep, put their ashes in, covered it with compost, then put the plant in and back filled.  Now they will be in the garden with me always, and it makes me happy in a wistful sense.

Friday, January 6, 2012

No sign of a real winter.

Not a good sign for summer.  Idaho snowpack levels are down.  Spring better be REALLY rainy.

The ground isn't even frozen.  I was able to rake leaves today.  We have a Red Oak that drops it's leaves pretty late.  While I was raking, I picked up the Iris leaves and there are new shoots coming up.

I also dug up an oregano plant out front because it self seeds a little too aggressively.  Did some weeding too.  Very odd for January.