I have been seeing so many pictures of pretty spring blooms all over Blogland and finally I finally have some of my own (just when you can't take looking at another!). My daffodils seem to be lasting much longer than usual as the tulips are now bursting open and I rarely have them both looking so great at the same time. It really is a riot of color out in the backyard. I planted these, which I believe are anemones (according to the wrinkled and creased piece of muddy paper which served as my diagram) last fall. There are some white ones interspersed as well. I love this shade of blue.
I've had these pretty little tulips for a long time. It's hard to show you a whole clump of flowers and I'll tell you why...it's The Husband's fault. Back before he acted like he knew how to garden, as he does now by the way, he got it in his head to rototill the garden bed that ran along the fence where my tulips came up every year. I walked out that day just as he had finished and was surveying the furrows of rich soil, laden with shreds of roots and pieces of bulbs that looked a lot like a bag of mixed nuts. Hysteria ensued as you can imagine. "I thought they were dead!" he said in his defense, "I thought you planted them every spring!" I guess that seems logical...to a complete idiot.
...more like just one of these here and over there and over...well you get the idea. It's colorful to say the least.
Somewhere along the way, The Husband decided he liked the great outdoors. He really enjoyed snapping on his tool belt when we were up at the lake, but never had much interest in my garden puttering. Then one day he heard of some sort of homemade fertilizer for our boxwood and started making and using it. He wanted to put it on some of my flower beds and I said, "No way! Use it on your stuff and stay away from mine!" I was probably one of those children who never shared her toys. So...he started to dig and plant and soon he had flower beds of his own. Beautiful daisies, knee high I might say. A gorgeous rock garden. Containers filled with flowers and plants, a rose tree.
I remember once asking a friend how it was when she and her husband became empty nesters and eventually retired. Her face absolutely lit up. "Oh, my gosh! We golf together every morning and we hike and ride our bikes. Most evenings we make dinner together and then watch a movie. You are going to just love it, Jane!" Somehow I just don't see that happening. I'll never golf and I thought, he'd never garden. And now, here he is on my turf (so to speak). I'm territorial. I was aggravated that he was using my tools and leaving them all about. He was claiming areas to start new beds where he got more sun than me. He became a BFF with the woman that ran the nursery in town at the lake. She gave him all sorts of free advice and a few free plants and discounts. And what really made me want to SCREAM was he would take her advice over mine! So no, having this little hobby together will never work. Oh, we'll both be out in the yard together, but certainly not side by side. And our tools will be color coded.
I share this story with you because The Husband went to the lake alone this past weekend. He had to take care of some business so he thought he'd just get away alone. When he came home he went on about how he had trimmed and fertilized and weeded and...well, can you see me getting a little squirmy? "And then I thought your wisteria needed a little trimming." Oh, no. Wrong thing to say. Wrong, wrong, wrong.
It's going to be an interesting summer.
The weather was a little dreary here this weekend and I was busy with other things. Yesterday morning I was ready to burst, I just wanted to get outside so bad. It was in the mid 60's and the sun was shining. Still too early to plant anything. I set up the sprinklers to water my newly seeded lawns and then decided I needed more seed. Off I went to Home Depot. I was surprised to see people buying annuals, I just wouldn't risk it, the nights are still slipping down into the 40's. The pansies were everywhere. They do well here in the spring and fall but I usually don't splurge on them because they tucker out with the heat. Except. I just needed to get my hands in that dirt! So I caved and got enough to make a pot for the front and back porches. And I did another daring thing. I bought a bird feeder! Yes!! I've never had one, plenty of birdhouses, but never a feeder. I always thought that I couldn't keep up with filling one being gone at the lake several days a week. But I really, really wanted to be able to sit on my patio and see the cuties coming and going. So I splurged on the cheapest feeder and bag of seed I could find! :)
Me and the dogs had a ball! We worked and played outside from noon until 4:00. I planted and watered and brought the patio furniture out. I scrubbed that down and put the umbrella on. I got all of my summer things out of the shed...lot's of candles and lanterns and my gardening tools. I cleaned all of that up. I hung the feeder and the birdhouse I found awhile ago at Homegoods and finally...we were done. Look at that Layla! They really do live for summer!
I don't know why this picture turned out like this, I took it with my camera, I was trying to zoom in and hit something else and this is how it came out, unedited. If anyone knows what I might have done, let me know. It almost looks like one of those Waterlogue pictures from an IPhone. Anyway, dead center is the little feeder. It has a copper top. And the birdhouse is there on the left. It sort of looks like it's suspended in mid air! This picture was taken from the bathroom window (with the screen open). When I got up this morning I looked out this window and was so surprised...I actually had two sparrows at the feeder! I thought it would take awhile for word to get around we were serving breakfast. And one of the sparrows was going back and forth from the feeder to the birdhouse on the right with the red roof. Ha! A B&B!
When I'm busy like I was yesterday afternoon, I always gravitate to pasta for dinner. I made this in less than 20 minutes. I'll give you this very quickly as I know I've gone a little longer with this post then I meant to.
While you are boiling a pot of water for the pasta (1 pound of fettuccine or linguine), heat 2 T of olive oil and 3 T of butter in a medium sized skillet or saucepan. Saute 1/2 cup of finely chopped onion with 2 cloves of finely chopped garlic over low heat. When soft, add 2 T of pine nuts and cook until just browned. Toss in 2 cups of loosely packed fresh snow peas and saute until just tender, about 2 minutes. Grate in about 1 T of lemon zest and the juice of 1 lemon. Bring to a boil and add 1/2 c white wine. Let wine cook off, turn to low and season with 1 T of dried tarragon, salt and pepper to taste. Drain pasta and pour sauce over. This is great with a tossed salad.
I'm still working on our upcoming trip. I have researched and Googled and printed and Googled and I don't want to even think about the itinerary yet. . We will be in 6 towns over 7 days. And then 5 straight days at our condo in Asheville where I am sure we will be too tired to do anything but sleep and loll around by the pool. I'll tell you more the next time I post. Hope you're off to a great week! :)