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dinner with friends / illumination

Sunday was a full day. Worked at the nursery from 10-5, and even though I was exhausted, we had been invited to dinner with friends at 8.  Dinner was at the town's new hotel (which I dislike - I may blog about it next time around), but I was really looking forward to hanging out w/my pals and walking through the town square.

Dinner itself was very fun! I got to dress up, and wear my fancy dress-up glasses. And although I'm not a big go-out-to-dinner person, it was a blast being with L and T, and P and M (the artists, not the gardeners; though this P&M also garden, but you know what I mean). The food was tasty, too, and the chef gathers as many ingredients locally as possible.

The college's commencement/reunion weekend was early this year - usually they schedule it over the Memorial Day weekend. Sunday night is Illumination, where they string lanterns all over the square, and people gather and listen to music.

So enough of my blabbing, here are some photos:
 
dinner with friends / illumination
On our way to dinner (we were recently gifted new fancy phones with lots of fun features)

dinner with friends / illumination
The town square on our way to dinner at the new (ugly) hotel
dinner with friends / illumination
Me, L and P. I had no idea Robert was taking this (hilarious) photo, especially
in light of my last post.  In case you think me a total hypocrite,
I did stash my phone away once dinner began.
dinner with friends / illumination
On our way home after dinner, through the square  - that's R in the middle, looking back.

autumn days

Friday was spent cleaning out the garden plots and potted annuals. I know I am supposed to scrub all the empty flower pots but we'll see if that gets done. I also need to put some old chicken litter on top of the empty garden beds (we haven't had chickens for a few years, so that litter is more than aged and will be a good addition to the putting-the-beds-to-bed process).

autumn days
To the compost pile.
autumn days
Last of the geraniums
The non-profit event was a success last Friday night, and I'm getting back to 'normal' work life. Pottery class is going well, and it looks as though the hand-building class in November is a go.

Oh, my 'scarecrow' won first prize in the category "Backyard Weeds"! I did not know that was a category when I made it.  Seriously, I didn't! (Some of you know that I worked for the nursery where the Scarecrow Fest is held, but since I didn't work there in September and October, I wasn't on top of the categories)  I have brought it home, and added some more hydrangea blossoms, and now it sits on the front porch, which was looking a little bare since the annuals are gone.

autumn days

Yesterday, I had to unload and then load a kiln at the community arts center, so I stopped by the Farmers Market to find some spinach and chat with folks I know there. I also picked up some delicious Asian pears. 

In between football and futbol games on television today, I'll be back in my downstairs art/pottery space finishing up some demos for tomorrow's pottery class that I started yesterday.

It's a beautiful fall day today - hope everyone is enjoying a relaxing Sunday!

a quick update

This weekend is the Scarecrow Fest (held at the nursery/garden center), and my entry is very abstract.

a quick update

Some of the students who took my September pottery classes are taking another class with me this month!

Work at the non-profit has been non-stop - first a community garden harvest festival in late September, then a ribbon cutting for a solar powered home that the organization built, and now we're getting ready for a big 20th anniversary dinner on Friday. That is the main reason I haven't been posting a lot lately - been way too busy.

And also why I haven't been reading and/or replying on a lot of blogs. I'm looking so forward to next Saturday. But tonight I'll keep my mind off of work and watch the US v Mexico soccer game. 

short and sweet

It was a week ago already that Laura and Emil came to stay with us. They had spent time in NYC, drove from there to visit us on their way to Chicago.  Their visit was short and sweet, and we miss them a whole bunch. You know when you meet people and instantly it feels as if you have known them your entire life? Yep, it was like that!

short and sweet
Laura and Emil, sitting on our front porch swing, a long way from Denmark!
They arrived late Tuesday, and we stayed up until after 2:00 a.m. talking about all sorts of things. It was so much fun.  Wednesday, Robert made us a big breakfast around 10:00 a.m., and then we toured around our town a bit, pointing out this and that to our young travelers, and stopped into our friend Aaron's record shop (Hanson Records):

short and sweet
Aaron, Robert, Emil and Laura at Hanson Records
I needed to get to work at the nursery and I was annoyed I had to miss all the fun, but how wonderful that Robert, Emil and Laura came to visit me, bringing ice cream treats and pop!  And later that evening, they treated us to dinner at the Feve. Delightful!

Emil is integral to R's past tours in Europe and his three stays in Denmark, so R had spent time with E and L before. It was a treat for me to be able to get to know them. And, for you readers awaiting a perfume-post, I'll have one soon because to my happy surprise Laura is also a perfume freak!!!!

They left late Thursday morning, and it was very sad to see them go.  But I know we'll see each other again. And need to update my passport because by hook or by crook, I am definitely going to Denmark!

(Oh and we DID get our house cleaned up and the front hallway was done on time!! Phewww! I may post before/after photos soon)


sunday gardens

We had a 'rain date' for the Garden Tour today since some people were confused because it rained so much last Sunday. It was a lot of fun for me because I didn't have to do as much work (the hours were shortened) and I was able to dress up and hang out with some of the gardeners.
sunday gardens
Peter, who is our main volunteer gardener at the community garden,
and Alan, my boss at the non-profit which oversees the community garden

sunday gardens
I was hanging out with Sarah; here she is watering part of her garden
sunday gardens
I decorated my hat with one of my pom pom headbands.
I'm going to make a pompom headband for Sarah to match the dress she's wearing

sunday gardens
A bit of Lisa and Ken's garden, next door to Sarah and Tim's

sunday gardens
A Japanese-inspired garden on the tour - today was the first day I was able to visit it!

sunday gardens
I liked what I was wearing today, so I took a photo on our front porch and sepia-d it.
I still feel silly taking 'fashion' self-portraits, but oh well.
Those with a keen eye can see the crocheted doilies that Jayne sent me last year!
We're going to have a busy week - as I mentioned last post, two of Robert's friends from Denmark are visiting mid-week.  And we still have some cleaning up to do before they arrive. Hope we get it all done on time.

garden tour (photo heavy)

The Garden Tour was a success, even though it rained a lot and we got a slow start. (In fact our area has had a heck of a lot of rain - something like in June we had five inches more than usual and it's looking like July isn't far off!)

I think I mentioned that my boss at the nursery/garden center hosted this Garden Tour, and the money donated will go to help fund the community garden (which is a program of the non-profit where I also work).

garden tour (photo heavy)
Balloons and a hydrangea mark a garden tour destination - here, the community garden

I was stationed at the community garden yesterday - I took the first shift, selling tickets and handing out maps for the Tour. It was really really rainy the time I was there, so how very thoughtful and sweet that two other community gardeners popped by - one to spell me and the other drove me home so I could change clothes!

garden tour (photo heavy)
Me, smiling in the rain
garden tour (photo heavy)
The community garden - we are hoping to raise enough money for a deer fence, but in the meantime,
individual gardeners are putting up their own deer fencing around raised beds


Denise and her husband, and two of their friends came to the Tour, too! It stopped raining after awhile, and I was able to meet with them and tour one garden with them, and then we all went to the Feve (Robert came along too) to have a bite to eat. While I was gone, other community gardeners took their turn selling tickets and handing out maps.

garden tour (photo heavy)
Denise and Jonnie looking at a some koi in a garden pond
Since I didn't have the chance to take photos of all the other gardens on the tour, here are some photos of my garden here at home:
garden tour (photo heavy)

garden tour (photo heavy)

garden tour (photo heavy)
So much rain, I need to feed the hanging baskets, and the succulents aren't too happy

garden tour (photo heavy)

garden tour (photo heavy)



garden tour

As you all know, I have three part-time jobs. Some days I want to tear my hair out. Most days I have never been more happy.

My garden center/nursery boss has been hosting the annual Scarecrow Festival for years (I have posted about it a couple of times here) and that event benefits our town's non-profit community center.  This year, she is hosting the first annual Garden Tour, and this event will benefit the community garden, a program of the non-profit community development corporation (one of my other part-time jobs)! Thank you to D my garden center boss, and to all the gardeners!

Wednesday, we went around to the gardens that will be featured on the tour, and I took some photos. I was amazed, and humbled, by the skill and beauty of these garden. Since the garden tour isn't until July 12th, I am excited to see what will be blooming then. A sneak peek of some of the gardens on the tour:

garden tour
garden tour
garden tour
garden tour

And here I was all excited about my dinky little garden, and this little corner:  If you remember from last year when I first planted it.

garden tour
Heliotrope in foreground, purple lamium, and bellflowers waiting to bloom, and a stray weed.
And my Deutzia 'Magician/Magicien' is in bloom, in a bed next to our back porch stairs:

garden tour

mostly photos, and a little grumbling

I have a few minutes before I head off to work at the garden center/nursery, so here's a quick post.

Yesterday, I stopped in the pottery room to check on the kiln, and coming home I saw some students rolling around on the square (in those big plastic balls) - I was a bit envious.

mostly photos, and a little grumbling

A week or so ago, I spied a Cinderella-ish carriage in town:

mostly photos, and a little grumbling 

The weather has been hot - mid to upper 80s, and the other day, we registered 90 F. Yes I know I was complaining about the cold this past winter, but the heat and humidity is a bit much so early in the season. Whine whine whine.  I think I'm a little grumpy - wait, I'll re-phrase that - I know I am a little grumpy because someone nearby is lighting their campfires at night (they do this every year and every year I bristle) which is a pain in the butt when it's hot and I have the fan going and the smell of smoke isn't very conducive to sleep. I'm one of those people who needs/wants/has-to-have 8-9 hours per night or I'm a mess.  Bah humbug.

What else?  Oh I'm making little oval-shaped planters for my sedums.  Here's a piece that hasn't been fired yet and I'm not sure what glaze I'll be using - probably a celadon of some sort:

mostly photos, and a little grumbling


may days

Ahhh it's May, and I'm relaxing this weekend as it is two full days off for me in a row!  May will be a bit slower as I am not teaching pottery this month, but will pop in to the community arts center to check up on things and fire bisque and glaze kiln loads as Open Studio continues.

The nursery is super busy, and I'm also working more hours for the non-profit.  We only have one plot left for the community garden - it's the most full it has been in a few years and we all are quite pleased!

Friday:  May Day was our 11th anniversary! I gifted Robert two big bags of peanut M&Ms earlier in the week, and he gathered this beautiful bouquet of flowers from our yard, and then made us my favorite meal - steak, mashed potatoes and gravy, and green beans. Just perfect.

may days
Anniversary bouquet in a Hull Pottery vase
Saturday: I missed The Big Parade though I heard it go by on the street south of us. I was just so exhausted from April that I stayed home all day and didn't change out of my pyjamas until 3:30.*  we watched some hockey (Stanley Cup play-offs - not really rooting for any team except that I always root against any team from any sport that is from New York!) and caught up on some other programs that we had taped/tivo-ed.  But at 8:00 p.m. I mowed some of the back yard - it was a jungle back there -  as by that time I felt that I needed to do something constructive.

Has anyone seen these before?

may days
Window screen hole fixers
They're cute little flowers to cover up the holes in your window screen. (I opened up the green one so you can see how they work)  I have no idea how I found these - I think I got them off Ebay years and years ago. The weather has been so nice - sunny and in the high 60s and low 70s - that I want to open all the windows, but stink bugs and wasps and ripped screens are keeping me from doing that.  Today we may fix a few screens - the old-fashioned way and with these flowers.

Happy May everyone!

* Around 12:30 on Saturday I was trying to nap, and my bed shaked so much that it woke me up. Items on the shelves clinked together. I thought it was an earthquake but nothing came up in Google news, so then I figured it was just a large truck rumbling by in front of our house.  Robert just informed me that there was indeed a 4.2 magnitude earthquake - in Michigan!

what day is it?

what day is it?
Self-portrait of me in my basement art space -
though I haven't had time to get down there much recently
Lots going on - here's a run-down:

Nursery/garden center job going well - only there Fri/Sat this month, but it is a relief after all that is going on and the fact that I have no computer access so I cannot get distracted by emails!

Non-Profit:  Garden clean-up with college track team volunteers, and then a meeting w/some of the new gardeners this past Sunday.  The students were able to move a ton of mulch and wood chips in two hours, and weed all the raised beds, which was much needed and so very helpful.  Then last night we (Interim Executive Director and I) went in front of City Council to update our 'lease' on the garden. We are also asking to be able to sell produce to help fund the garden and have plans for a hoop house/high tunnel, but that needs more discussion. Robert was home and he taped and watched the televised meeting, so I got to see myself on video when I got home late (I screwed up stating my address! hahaaa!) and it was weird watching it because I haven't seen myself in motion since I was in my early 30s.  We also had a late request for our B&B program, but that was a success too even though at one point I was talking to the guest five minutes before a pottery class.  The guest was delightful and added an extra donation to our cause, and the host was happy.


what day is it?
College track team helping out in the garden

Oh also Sunday evening I went to meet some of the Board members of the Farmers Market to clarify my job description as Market Manager this year. 


Pottery classes going well but I need to meet with Education Director and the pottery instructor for teens/children to deal with reclaimed clay.  Actually I did talk and/or email with both of them separately - we need a plan of action agreed upon asap.  Most students want 'fresh' clay so reclaimed clay is becoming a mountain. I have a good plan - thanks to a Facebook group I joined - so I am confident we will get this under control soon.

It's Tuesday, right? Pottery class soon - better get ready.


dinner with friends / illuminationautumn daysa quick updateshort and sweetsunday gardensgarden tour (photo heavy)garden tour mostly photos, and a little grumblingmay dayswhat day is it?

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