Friday, June 25, 2010

Rock On!

I'm a firm believer that you can bang your head to pretty much any kind of music. Sure, loads of rock bands and rock band fans get their bobblehead on all the time, but what about other musical genres? What about Classical? Listen to the fabulous Paul Odette...



Oh what? Baroque guitar is cheating? Well, what about a little harpsichord? "Surely not," you say. The Gavotte and 6 Doubles by Rameau is probably my favorite piece for harpsichord (with Trevor Pinnock playing--the man is an octopus!) It may not have your head bobbing right away, but if you're not doing a bob by the last few minutes, there's something wrong with you.



Still think I'm cheating because harpsichord has percussive qualities? Well, I once did a little head banging while listening to a flutist friend playing the Piston Sonata, but I can't say that it was my best effort (rock on, Jeana!) Here's something orchestral to get the blood pumping. Dvorak's Slavonic Dance Number 1.



There are loads of other examples of classical music that rocks, if you still don't believe me. But I will leave you with you with my favorite headbanger in modern rock music, Chris Wolstenholme, bassist of the band Muse.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

I Dream a Little Dream of You



I dreamt of you this morning. It wasn't the sort of dream you'd like, with pirates and dinosaurs and your favorite bear. It's not exactly the sort of dream I like, either.

But, at least, this way I can see you and touch you again.

And talk to you.

And hear your voice.

Since you've been gone all of my "Evan Dreams" have had you sick in the hospital or recovering. It doesn't seem fair that even in my dreams you can't be untouched by illness. I dream of you so seldom now, though, that even these painful dreams are welcome.

In this dream you called me "Mommy."

I awoke, knowing the truth, but feeling as though you were so close.

Just a breath away.

Garden Blogger's Bloom Day

I remembered! Usually I forget to post what's in bloom on the 15th each month. And today probably shouldn't count, because I took the photos yesterday. But it was too stinkin' hot to go out today. That's my story and I'm stickin' to it!



I have been very fortunate to make some wonderful online gardening friends in one of the many gardening forums on the Internet. We do plant swaps once or twice a year. We talk plants, family, do the swap, and the best part...eat! I got several daylilies last year at the trade. I have no idea what any of them are called. I could care less, really, because they are just as beautiful even if I call them a "Passalong Daylily."



A Double Daylily I picked up at a plant trade.



Another trade! I'm so lucky!




One drainage ditch is starting to come along nicely. I can't wait for this project to be over, honestly. Once the stone is in and I can get the mulching and final planting done, I really think our yard will look very, very nice.



The daylilies have just been magnificent this year. I purchased this little beauty from Crazy Eddie's this year. I had different plans for the several that I picked up, but ended up placing them along one of the drainage ditches. They are all supposed to be George C. Bingham Daylilies. After looking up the photo of that variety, I don't believe that's what I have! That's ok, though, because I love it! I wouldn't mind if there were some more this color in there!


Daylily, "Paper Butterfly"

I picked up several "Paper Butterfly" Daylilies when a local nursery was going out of business. Huge flowers on top of this compact 18" plant. It does a bit of re-blooming, if I'm lucky. It's a good spreader, but doesn't go crazy.


Echinacea purpurea, "Kim's Mophead"

There are tons of blooms and more buds covering both of my Kim's Mophead Coneflowers right now. When I found these for sale last year, the lady at the nursery gushed about them and said they just bloomed all summer for her. I've been pleased as well. It's 18"-24" tall on a neat plant. It doesn't seem to get leggy like some Coneflowers.



Early Bird Gold Rudbeckia is bustin' out all over, just like the month of June. I can't say enough good stuff about that plant. It's the same size as the Paper Butterfly Daylily and Kim's Mophead Coneflower. I have them all in the same area, and they just look like they belong together. Now, if I could just get the shorter thing in front right. I've got Wave Petunias there. And even though I've been periodically pinching back, they're still leggy. I may use Million Bells next year.


Daylily, "Wineberry Candy"

After looking at all these Daylilies in this post, I feel like I should rename it "Garden Blogger's Bloom Daylilies"! Wineberry Candy is up by the road. It's not technically a "Hell Strip," but it's pretty steamy by the asphalt. They are also a good spreader. The ones I didn't divide to take to this year's trade have just been loaded with blooms. It's been a real treat. Hopefully, the temperatures will get cooler, so I can actually go outside and enjoy the garden again soon!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Stoked



The Stokes' Aster (Stokesia laevis) is blooming now in my Butterfly Garden. The Crocosmia is trying to take over, but the Stokesia is putting up a good fight. (Note to self: clear out some Crocosmia.) I've been thinking about moving the Stokesia along with some of my Rudbeckia hirta (I've been calling it fulgida, but was told recently it's hirta?! I'm so confused!) over to an area on the other side of the creek. I read somewhere that Stokes' Aster can take a little moisture. It's a native plant to parts of the Southeast, including wetlands. So, I'm going to give it a shot. I was lamenting that this pretty little yellow variety called "Mary Gregory" hadn't come back. I thought the blue and yellow would be so pretty together, and then...



There it was! Just hiding amongst the stupid Crocosmia. (Are you noting at least the hate part of the love-hate relationship I have with that plant?) So, yeah, I was pretty stoked. And then I thought, "Stoked. Stokes' Aster." Snicker snicker. Sigh. Yes, I'm that lame.



I was thinking of planting the Stokesia and Rudebeckia together, although they may not bloom at the same time. If they did it would be really fabulous. I can't say that I haven't thought about just getting rid of that Rudbeckia (I mean, it's spreading into the lawn! What does that?! Notice another love-hate relationship going on here?)



Of course, moving all of these things means a largish space to fill in the Butterfly Garden. Oh no! I guess that means new plants! **evil grin**

Sunday, June 6, 2010

What's Blooming



Hydrangea serrata "Miranda" Lovin' the blue flowers! They are having less wilting this year than last. Hopefully, that trend will continue. One plant is more robust looking than the other. And hopefully, she'll perk up after this season.



I picked up this pink Campanula at a plant trade. This is my first experience with Campanula. And, so far, I'm pleased. I have it in a spot that gets only a little direct sun, mostly filtered sunlight. And it seems happy. It's always nice to pick up a new plant...especially if it's not fussy.



Hydrangea aborescens "Annabelle" is always a knockout. It's just astounding how huge those blooms get! That particular plant suffered a little beating during a recent storm, but seems somewhat recovered. These are also native to the US! I haven't had any wilting from the Annabelles this year now that they are established. I do have some from my dwarf Oakleaf Hydrangea. It may have suffered some damage in the September flooding. Hopefully, it will be back to normal sooner than later.



Rudbeckia fulgida "Early Bird Gold" This photo was taken on May 31. This variety of Black Eyed Susan is supposed to have an extended bloom period. And from my experience last year (and so far this year), I can say it's true! They bloom like crazy, and don't seem to suffer from some of the late summer ugly foliage that I get with my Rudbeckia hirtas. There is some spreading, but as of now after having the plants for a year, they're not going nuts.



The Daylilies, on the other hand, are going nuts! They are blooming all over the place and looking magnificent! This is Hemerocallis "Paper Butterfly." The flower is huge on this compact 2 foot plant. It spreads nicely, but not aggressively. I can honestly say that I get the whole Daylily obsession thing.

She's No Angel


Miranda's "Snow Angel" that she made from an entire bag of flour dumped on the floor today.

I remember attending the meet and greet for Duncan's preschool class last fall. It was supposed to be a fun opportunity for us to meet the teachers and other kids (and their parents) in Duncan's class. I was at least slightly distracted, because Duncan and Miranda both were wrapped around my legs, fussing, climbing, or some other behavior. After asking me a question (that I don't remember. see above), the teacher started talking to another parent. She also had a little boy. In fact, she said, she had another boy at home..."so, you know, with two boys I have my hands full." What is that about? I was a mother of two boys only briefly. Just six months. And sure, my hands were full. But I can attest to the fact that although little girls may be made of sugar and spice and everything nice, that doesn't mean they're always little angels. It turns out that every preschool party we attended, Miranda was not just a handful along with her brother, she was a handful and a half by herself!



Miranda has gone above (literally!) and beyond here lately. It seems like she had a schedule of things that she wanted to achieve (all very naughty or, at least, stressful for me!), and she was checking them off, one by one. She's always been a runner, so I always have to keep an eye on her when we're outside. But recently she's figured out some things indoors. She started pulling off the doorknob covers. It was like the world was her oyster! Now, she could go in Mommy and Daddy's room and jump on the bed whenever she liked! And she did. She also checked out the bathrooms (and found out how wet toilets can be!) and she explored the guestroom.

She also recently started climbing out of her crib. The one time Evan climbed out, it was to get his Bear Bear. He landed with a crash. It scared him (and me!) so badly, that he never tried it again. When Duncan started climbing out, he also landed with a crash. We put him back in the crib, hoping that it was a one time deal. Nope. He raced to get out, and came crashing down again. Miranda? She's the ninja. She is able to climb out so quickly and quietly, that sometimes she can beat me to the door! We put the toddler bed in there for her. She's explored it, but, interestingly enough, she climbs back in the crib to go to sleep!

And, like all kids, Miranda knows how to make a mess.



And the one thing that I almost forgot...Miranda gave up her nap! So, she was getting into all kinds of trouble, and then not napping. With all the new excitement, she was so exhausted by the end of the day, that she was quite a bear come bedtime. I probably forgot about this, because I seem to have been able to get her to nap again in this last week or two. But it's coming. Lucky me!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Today's Schedule

As created by Duncan and Miranda.

1. Two massive blowouts. --Check
2. Lotion and conditioner mess a la Duncan. --Check
3. Sugar spill a la Miranda. --Check
4. Diaper rash cream smeared all over the TV and basketball. --Check
5. Diaper rash cream in hair. --Check
6. Smacking Mommy with plastic toy fishing rod. --Check
7. Time Outs. --Check
8. Two baths. --Check
9. (Unplanned by kiddies) Washer that won't use spin cycle + drying twice the normal length of time. --Check
10. Ants. --Check
11. Mommy completely loses it. --Check
12. Makeup destroyed. --Check
13. Muse shirt covered in diaper rash cream. --Check (grrr!)

Ready for a cold stiff drink? --Check