Sunday, May 20, 2007

** I spent the good part of Saturday working the vege beds and layering compost in a site where corn is going to be planted. **

I know it's kinda late for planting corn, but it's been so damp and rainy, it scared me away from the garden. Guess it's the fear of spreading some kind of disease in the garden with too much rain and who knows what all else. The big thing that was just too cool, was that after he got off work, my youngest came home and dug up a Gold Mine for the garden ~~ where we've been letting an old tree stump rot out in the lawn for what seems like has now become mostly an underground blob of old watery wood junk -- perfect for composting the garden beds. He was originally going to expand the garden bed for the green beans, but then discovered that it was where the tree stump had been...we'd let the grass grow back over it after letting layers of clippings, leaves etc., sit on top of it for 4 years or so. !!! Now it's in a stage where it can be torn/shredded apart and layered in the garden. Poor Kid -- after working in the furniture factory all day, you'd think the last thing he'd want to do was DIG in the garden. But that's what kind of guy he is. He's always liked to garden, and now he's layered lots more stuff in the garden!! I'm so happy.

I've got only a couple minutes before I've got to get to the hardware store...after The Husband picks up the youngest at church...I've been working off and on for the past couple weeks at texturing the front bathroom, then I'll repaint the walls and get a new curtain rod up an make some new curtains for the bathroom. I'd used a "texture" paint a couple years ago, but it didn't make the walls look quite the way I wanted them to look. So, using a technique I'd done down in our house in S.C., I got the medium 2 weeks ago, and started on the walls one afternoon while waiting for The Husband to come back to the truck terminal from out of state. The walls are beginning to look the way I want, the work goes easy, and it's relatively cheap to do. The Husband likes the way it's coming together, and he's not all grumpy like he was with the texture paint I used before. So, that means that it must look sorta decent...he's such a grump sometimes!!

Now I've got some other projects to finish this week too ~~ Got 2 new collages in progress, and tomorrow I get the Saturn to drive (!!) so I can get to the Art Store and get some supplies I need to make new frames. I've got some little bits and pieces to finish on the w.i.p. 's -- so once their done it's frame - time!!

Lady Of The Tulips ~~ Who has to find her coupons for the store...did the classic, Put them Away in A Safe safe they've disappeared. Man-O-Man I hate when I do that....

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

This is one of the frames I'd worked on a few weeks ago...I couldn't get a photo of it on the dining room table, so I found a towel in the studio, set it & the frame on the dog's couch and took this shot. I had fun with the color, and am wondering if it is something the lady over at the Bay would like. I have to get ahold of her tomorrow, and will take this frame and probably another piece I got finished on Friday. I've fallen in love with a varnish I discovered in the art store. It was a little more than I had wanted to spend, but I think the nice satin finish is just enuf for a frame like this. Didn't want to go overboard with high gloss. Let me know what ya think.
Right now I'm resting up from working out in the garden. My youngest dug up some old tree roots that we've left to rot over the past couple years, and now their good an' mushy for mulch in the garden beds. He spread some of these pieces out last weekend, and this morning before he went to work, he told me to lay out some more compost on the vege bed, then he'll set some more of the rotted wood down over the weekend. I got 3 beds dug I put in potatoes, and 2 others will have green beans in 'em. I'm going to wait 'till it cools off a little 'cause like a TOAD I went to work outside, wearing a Black t-shirt...Well -- it's fine if one really wants to work up a good healthy sweat, but that wasn't my idea at all -- I just wanted to get some work done before it rains tonight. So, actually I got a couple things accomplished...I feel like I lost 45 pounds with the melting I was doing, all while digging up the garden beds for the veges...
Now I'm waiting for the laundry to get dry outside, and will got back into the Other vege bed and get it layered with more compost. It got some last week, but now it's ready for the seeds to get plopped in 'em. The youngest wanted to grow corn this year, and they are a heavy feeding plant, so the more compost in their beds, the happier they'll be. The land we had down in S.C. had been planted for decades with corn, so once it got developed with our little subdivision, the soil was pretty well worn out. Thru years of putting in compost and mulch, it still wasn't that good of soil. I just hope whoever has since bought the house and acreage has done some more to make the ground work. I know now, that the garden beds we've been working in the 4 years we've started adding heavier layers of compost and mulch, have really payed off. The last of the tomatoes from '05 are finally finished from the freezer, so this years plants are gettin' goin' at just the right time. And their bed will have probably 2 layers total to start, of compost. That's on top of the 3 layers from last year. Heaven knows what I've unleashed in that garden bed. However, I am happy to say that I'm finding LOTS of earthworms, and there is no better sign that soil is getting good, than with a gazzzilion earthworms crawling thru the beds. Yahoo!!
Must go and paint some fabric with matte medium. Then I can apply it onto a collage that's in the works. Some little fishies, and a very cool sun I rediscovered..ya never know what you can find when cleaning out some drawers in a file cabinet...sheesh...
Lady of The Tulips ~~ who was so glad to find some corn seeds, that oh dear, she's put them away real good an' now doesn't remember where they are...oh my stars....

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Yesterday I'd barely gotten awake, when I realized that I was hearing a sound that I wasn't quite sure of. Oh, it sounded like something familiar, but it just had this different sort of something to it...made me think for a minute that it was not quite right. What it was....was...The Dog snoring over from me on the floor. And I'm not saying it was just this cute little sound...I MEAN it was a full on, loud, rumbling SNORE. At first when I realized what it was, I was all ready to jump up and yell something at The Husband. But then it dawned on me, that it wasn't his fault this noise was was The Dog. And she was making snores that sounded like nothing I've ever heard before. Almost put The Husband to shame.

So -- this is how The Dog looked the other day. But not the same day as the loud snoring. She was waiting for me in this picture, to get something for her, and I was taking my sweet time about it. And as one look at her face can tell...I was taking much too long to get whatever it was that she felt she was entitled to at that EXACT point in time. Not unlike having a 2-year old in the house, wanting something 15 Seconds ago...instant pout, and you are suddenly mud in their eyes. So ~~ after The Snore happened, I told The Dog that she just needed to get out to her little couch and make her self comfortable before I was going to let her outside, or get her one of her favorite doggie treats. Well ~~ She actually does NOT need to have any doggie treats, as she is developing quite the mid-life stomach flab, but don't tell her that, as she may go into another funk and we'll all be hearing about it shortly.

The Husband has decided that it is a good idea to use the outdoor clothes line now. And with the warm weather about to decend upon us, I'm just glad he's not still addicted to pushing the button on the dryer. He'd do a teeny bit of laundry, I mean, barely enuf to get wet in the washing machine, and then put the wet clothes in the dryer, and run that poor defenseless dryer for 40 minutes. No wonder the poor thing gave up and quit running. I would too, after all those clothes being swipped around in there. So now, The Husband has this idea that he's doing so much good for the environment, or some such thing, because he's now hanging his clothes outside. It'd be really great if he'd put said clothes AWAY once he gets them inside the house. But most times, he spews them all over the front room, and it looks like a hurricane just blew threw, and we need to call the insurance company. I mean, he has this thing about decorating the couches and the dining room chairs with shirts, socks, jeans....the shorts are usually put somewhere like the bathroom, so maybe they don't technically count. But it drives me to distraction...I MEAN!!! One look at this clothes - strewn - room and I can feel the hair on the back of my neck getting ready for the yelling that's about to take place. And it takes everything I've got not to just scream like a madman...but I try VERY VERY HARD not to go off the deep end...and nicely say.."Honey...can you pleeze put your Stuff in the closet...puuhhhlllEEEEZZEEEEE..." My success rate for this request is currently at an all time low of somewhere around 35%...

Have started a new collage today. Was all ready to spray some clear sealer on a couple little things I used watercolor pencil on...AND MY CAN OF PAINT IS DRY!!! ARRGGGHHHHH... I felt like crying, but since The Dog was sleeping over on her couch, I decided not to go into hysterics and went to the trash can an' threw the can away. I'd almost gone out on the stoop by the studio door to spray the sealer, but then realized I'd just set out my little baby vege plants...and I don't think they'd do too good with sealer all over them. I've got 5 or so tomato plants all happy in the sun now..3 or so green beans and 3 Basil plants. My oregano is still teeny and it worries me...butI think once they get transplanted in the garden, they'll perk up some more and be happy. And so far...SO FAR...the little brown bunny that meanders in the garden at night hasn't come near any of the plants. Last year or the year before, I can't quite remember...the blasted little creature ate 5 of my plants that were ready to go in the garden...MY GGGHHAAAADDDDD I was soooooooooooooooooo mad...I've never felt like killing a sweet little bunny ~~ But when I saw all my plants 3/4 eaten...oh, let me tell you. All bets were off. But then, The Dog decided she'd lay around in the same spot as the plants had been, so maybe the scent from her large-ness will keep said brown bunny away....well...that's in theory...

Lady-of-The-Tulips ~~ Who is waiting for a call from The Husband...I think in a call earlier he'd mentioned going out of town...but now I can't remember if that was suppossed to happen today or tomorrow.....

Thursday, May 10, 2007

** Not too many weeks ago, my middle son was working on this computer, and said he was going to add a few things on here that wouldn't take up too much space, or make this poor old computer take forever when it loads pages and things we have in it's inner parts. **

Well -- the oldest came over last night, and tried to fix one of the internet explorer thangs I've been using for over a year. He looked at all the little things my middle son had added to this computer, and lo and behold, there were a LOT more than I had thot...actually a long, long list of things he downloaded, and all add up to making this poor thing work very, very slowly. This added to my disappointment with trying to get access to other websites FAST and FASTER...and now it looks like, even with highspeed internet, this computer will still be going, SLOW and SLOWER...maybe along the lines of worse, and worse. I told my oldest Thank You, but it wasn't really the good news/good outcome I'd been hoping for.

~~ So now, I'm wondering whether this thing is going to last for too much longer. I've got absolutely no way to contact my middle son, and ask him if he could DO something with all the stuff he crammed in this machine. Makes me very sad. Not just about the computer, but about the fact that I have no idea of where he is, and have no way to contact him. Very frustrating.

But on a brighter note, I've found that the seeds I planted out front, of Hollyhocks, and Sunflowers, are starting to take off. It looks like just about all of the hollyhocks are sprouting, and one of the Sunflowers is actually getting quite tall. I know we have a wild bunny that zips around the yard in the night, and I'm hoping it does NOT see the flowers trying to come up out front. I'm going to also make another planting of both hollyhocks and sunflowers in the side yard where the vege garden is. I've also got some good sprouts on some potatoes, so those will get put in the ground this afternoon. We finally have a day without rain, and it looks like it'll stay warm enuf for at least 4 days, so that should give all the seeds and sprouts a chance to come up and be happy.

I've got another frame finished..well, just about. The varnish is drying on it now, so I had to walk away before I stuck my finger in the wet stuff. I have a terrible habit of sticking my finger in wet paint. Guess I never learned when I was young. I remember a couple years ago when we were getting ready to move from South Carolina...we were getting some odds and ends packed into boxes, and The Husband & I had looked out the kitchen window at the same time, and saw our neighbor sitting in a garden chair, staring at a picnic table he's just finished painting. Naturally, The Husband being the smart ass he is, goes out on the back porch and yells, "Hey Brad!! You watchin' the paint dry!!??" I won't say exactly what the neighbor said, as it's too crass for young readers...ahem....but let's just say he definetly got his point across. Which made The Husband roar with laughter. I had to wipe the tears outta my eyes. Cryin' from laughin' too hard. And, naturally I wanted to go over and REALLY see if the paint was wet...stick my fingers right in it. No -- I kept my paws away from it. But it took all my self control, let me tell ya...

~~ So now I'm gonna see what baseball game is on tv, check on the varnish in the studio, and see once again which green beans have sprouted in the peat pots in the western sunroom window. All but 3 have come up. I'm pretty excited. The youngest said something about getting the tomato cages out of the backyard and getting them ready by next week. We should have enuf dry weather by then to set those up, plus cages for the beans. Ahh...there is nothing like homegrown 'maters. Just like the song from the 80's, "Homegrown Tomatoes, Homegrown Tomatoes, nothin' is so good as Homegrown Tomatoes. Only two things that money can't buy, an' that's true love, an' Homegrown Tomatoes...." 'Nuff said.

Lady of The Tulips ~~ who wants to make a very fattening cheese and tomato pie, but isn't sure if she can convince The Husband to go buy some pie shells AND sour cream...sigh...

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

I think a few weeks ago, I'd mentioned that I had a problem every time I planted something in the garden..well, actually, I don't have a problem with planting: just after I put seeds or little baby plants in the soil, I can walk away from where I worked, and absolutely forget what plant is set in which seed bed.

~~ So ~~ this year I went ahead and made some plant tags. I've been interested in buying those spiffy metal tags that are in gardening catalogs; very nice looking, metal, and can be reused every year. All you have to do is write out what plant is located under each tag. Nice. However, that is too dull for me. So -- while I was cleaning around my work table, I found some scraps of foamboard, and went to town making them into little tags for the garden. I've got them painted and covered in varnish, and I'll see if they can hold up for a couple weeks in the garden..what with the rain, mud, dog meandering around and her infernal sniffing...well, you get the idea. And, I didn't want the tags to be boring. So, I sorta decorated them up.

I have other tags, but I thot I'd pop this one on the Blog, just to make some cheeriness for the day. We're having rain, drizzle and muck today, after 3 days of wind, wind and more wind. I was going to get my laundry done yesterday when the sun was shining and the wind was beginning to slow down a little. But, things happened, and I didn't get my clothes out till nearly 5 in the afternoon...and forgot they were out there till The Husband was on his way out the door with The Youngest to go to work...and it was RAINING. I'd asked BOTH of them yesterday, "Is it supposed to rain tomorrow or tonight?" and they both said "No" --

So in with the crummy weather and raindrops making my clothes dripping, I thot this bit of bright cheerfulness would improve my mood. The Youngest thot this was going a little over the top for the garden, but I told him that with my bad eyesight, these are Definetly not something I can miss outside. I have other ones for the veges too, but this one really got me in the mood for making the garden BRIGHT!! --- If all goes right, I should be able to see these from any window in the studio, and know exactly what's planted where. And, even if they fall apart, then I can go to the art store and get those little pieces of wood that are maybe .45 cents, and paint them up the same way.

Now I'm gonna go back in the studio and work on a frame I put together yesterday afternoon. I bought one of those kits at the art store a few weeks ago, and it went together faster than I thot it was going to. And all the pieces were on sale for less than $2.00 so I lucked out on the cost. Now it's the decision of what color or colors to paint the frame...le's see....uhhh...hmm...

Lady of The Tulips ~~ who has this idea floating in her head of little crabs and clams playing on the frame but can't decide on how to make them sit still and behave...

Monday, May 07, 2007

~~ I'm adding the rest of the TAGGED people..don't know why I didn't in my earlier post...maybe 'cause I let my cup of coffee get cold...and it made my brain freeze...

Tammy at Mimmiscal Creations

Jolene at The BLue Cottage

Kristin at Walking with Kristin

Sharon at Rabbithopdiva

kim at photoartist1

Le's see what YOU have for us....

Lady of The Tulips ~~ Who has to go check on the tomatoes an' peppers. The Dog was near them earlier and I'm hoping they didn't get smooshed from her dog-ness this morning...sigh

This is my new and improved studio space...actually it's the opposite wall from my work table. These are the books that I've had for over a zillion years, and most are old, but I'd never throw them away. My youngest has repeatedly told me to throw away lots & lots of them, but I can't find it in my heart to throw away any reading material. And since I've been a librarian, the whole idea of getting read of books makes me ill. This space was occupied with some sort of weird thing when we first bought the house, and I immediately knew once looking at the space, that it would house all our books. The majority of childrens books have been thinned out, and are now taking up space in the attic. What are left on the shelves are ones that I either love to look at and read breifly (i.e. -- procrastinating while at work...) or just have some kind of great artwork in them. The adult books are pretty shocking types are on the shelves, no outrageous trash novels. Agatha Christie is as risque (is that right?) as I can get on the murder genre.
And now I've found out I've BEEN TAGGED!! OHHH>>>> I'll get YOU my Bluejude done did this to me.....hmmm..
OK -- 7 things about me? -- Ah HA! I know...
1. -- When I get really stressed out with The Husband in a conversation, I start to stutter.
2. -- I hate shaving my legs...drives me up the wall.
3. -- I have a fondness for beer. Think I've mentioned before, I'm English, Irish and German. Kinda makes sense I'd like beer...Tom T. Hall has a song about beer, too.
4. -- I dispise mopping my kitchen floor. Even after buying one of those nifty Swiffer goodies...and what IS that blob by the dishwasher, anyway?
5. -- I drink my strong coffee with milk. If The Husband makes a pot in the morning, I have to thin it with water AND milk...yeah, it's THAT strong...
6. -- Love to get tan in summer, but am terribly afraid of skin cancer now...besides...think of Beached Whale and me laying in the sun...
7. -- I sometimes laugh so hard when listening to my middle son tell stories, that I nearly have to go change my pants...and I have to continually wipe my eyes because I laugh so hard I cry. Which makes it very difficult if I listen to him while driving The Very Fine Automobile...
Think that's all the Tagged Stuff. Now I'd like to tag Ms. Colleen @ Loose Leaf Notes and Ms. Ruthie too at My Heart My Art...lets hear (Or is that see?) what there is with YOU!!
Lady of The Tulips -- who has to go in a round about direction to get on her Blog, 'cause her internet explorer is trying to die...over an hour with "Tech Support" and they couldn't do a THANG!!! and wouldn't ya know it...I"M OUT OF TUMS!!!!!!!

Sunday, May 06, 2007

In an attempt to be very helpful to his Mommy, my youngest did a Very Good Thing, and had me help him bring home a new dishwasher...only problem is that it has been in the Studio/Sunroom for the last 3 months. It was pulled out of an old apartment that was being renovated into brand new Condo's, and since the machine is only 4 - o - 5 years old, he figures it is better than the existing one we have in the kitchen. The one in the kitchen is probably 20 years old, spits water all over the kitchen floor, and has a tendancy to dump water down the drain while it's supposed to be "washing" the dishes. My middle one said he remembered one like ours in a neighbors house when we first moved down to South Carolina in 1988...The door is made of metal, is heavy, and has left bruises on my shins on more occasions than I care to remember. is the machine, with books leaning against it...various THANGS all around it...and it still is waiting for The Husband to hook it up in the kitchen. I think I've given up on that happening, and am trying to put a good face on things at the moment. I am also furious that when I try to log-on to this Blog, the internet explorer I normally use keeps crashing..and little messages tell me to do this and that...all of which have I think I'll direct my anger to this poor neglected dishwasher in the sunroom...collecting dust...and it may have some spiders inside now, too. I haven't checked the inside for awhile. But it is a good holding place for me to stack magazines (Good for looking at color combinations for collages) assorted catalogs (seed catalogs are my downfall...I usually want to order 1,596 things from each one...) Sample magazines for subscriptions (You'll love our editorials!!) and some pots for planting seeds, transplanting baby tomatoes, or flowers. The only problem is that it just sits..SITS, this machine with black on the front....and collects dust. It isn't washing dishes like my youngest wanted it to do...and The Husband has decided it's better to call a plumber to install the thing, instead of him..."I may mess it up and it'll leak or somethin'..."
The machine we have ALREADY leaks water on the you KNOW how well this cop-out has gone over..But the bigger question remains...what to do with the machine near my work table?? ~~ Do I bite the bullet and pay a plumber? Do I say OH BLAST and try to find somebody to hook it up? ~~ I just leave it where it is and continue to dance around it and hope I don't keep stubbing my toes on the thing?
Lady of The Tulips...who isn't quite as angry over the Technical People who have done nothing to help with problems with my internet access...but maybe I will take my anger out and attack some of the weeds in the vege bed...poor things...they won't know what hit them...

Thursday, May 03, 2007

"Kind Ocean Lady" 2007 Spring Bay Studio L.P.
This is one of my newer lil' pieces, with a new frame that I worked on for a couple dayz. I had a real time with the color on the frame...actually the color wasn't Really the problem. I was the problem...trying to decide whether or not I liked the results after painting and painting...truth be told..the inner critic was heavily at work, making me a wreck until I told it to SHUT UP and go sit in a corner.
Finally I got all the work done, and even if I don't mind saying so, this turned out pretty groovy. I layed out the actual collage pretty quickly. But then I had to decide how to adjust some of the color for the background and the seaweed along the bottom. That was something that took most of 2 hours. I always feel like I'm taking too long if one project takes longer than an afternoon, and this one took close to 4 days. I'd keep saying to myself, You have to work faster, 'cause I'm sure everyone ELSE does this type of work faster than YOU!! ~~ Inner Critic Once Again.
But I wanted this mermaid to have a good place to play and enjoy her friend, so I took some time getting her just right. And I wanted the frame especially to highlight her just enough, so that she had a good place to be. So here she is, with her friend, and they do look kinda peaceful, don't ya think?
The weather here has been so crazy: last friday it was very very warm, then we had a batch of thunderstorms that flooded the garden beds. And just yesterday it got up to 90 Degrees...followed in the early evening with a round of thunderstorms. Naturally The Dog had to run into the front bedroom and hide under the computer desk, shaking and making little whimpering noises. The lightening was really nice to watch, and I kept looking at it while at the same time watching the Red Sox game on t.v. ~~ Today now, you'd never know it was as warm as it was yesterday...rain and drizzle, mucky cloudy day, and The Dog didn't even stay out in the backyard more than 45 minutes. The grass is still drenched, so she just got miffed about it and came back in the house. The vege beds got a good soaking tho, and that's just what they needed.
I've spent the last 2 days turning the soil over in the larger vege bed...well, actualy both the beds are pretty big, but the larger of the 2 got worked on ~~ Got a little more mulch put on yesterday. I've had a pile of old leaves, branches and "Stuff" out in the backyard for some time, and it's just now composted enuf so that it's nice and crumbly for the garden. Got that topdressed where some of the compost from last year has already been pretty much decomposed into the soil. I like to try and keep a good amount on the soil surface, that way during the hotter summer months, we don't loose so much soil moisture. I also got some compost tea made up and poured on some of the perinneal (would you look at the horrible spelling? you'd never know I really know english...) flowers. The one flower that I'm happy about is the Foxglove. It had been growing like crazy during the earlier part of winter, getting lots of new leaves on it, and enjoying the unusual warm temps. Then it Finally got COLD, and the poor thing got freeze burned so bad, it looked like it was done for. But just in the past 3 weeks or so, it's finally making a comeback, with lots of new growth, and perked up after I gave it a nice drink of compost tea. And we have some new plants of Yarrow comming in to. That's another plant that had nearly died off, but last summer I started giving it lots of Tea, and it finally looks like it's going to make a go of it this year too.
So all in all, a very busy last 2 weeks. I've been checking the new plantings of vege seeds, and have tomatoes coming up, along with Basil, Oregano, green beans, and bell peppers. The west window in the studio is completely covered in little 3" pots, with little baby plants in each one. Makes me hopeful for a good growing season.
Lady of The Tulips -- who is now finally going to go get something to eat...had toast for breakfast and that lasted about as long as my patience at a long traffic light...with some kid behind me trying to smash into the backend of my Very Fine Automobile 'cause He's in a hurry...sigh..