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Archive for July, 2007

I am addicted to garage sales. Well, garage sales, thrift stores, junk outlets – you name it. I’m a firm believer in the adage, “One man’s junk is another man’s treasure”. I love finding treasures. I once had a house that was furnished and decorated almost exclusively from garage sale items (they fit my budget at the time). 

When we built the ‘secret’ garden last summer, T put up a tall pole which was to be used for a bird house. We’ve thrown ideas around all year, trying to figure out whether we wanted a platform on top, with several bird houses on it, or just one large house, or just exactly what it was we I wanted.

I went garage-saling Friday and found this delapidated bird house – for the great price of $4.00!
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And after some paint, and some assistance from T, this is what we have now… high-rise for the birdies. T put a blue steel roof on it, that matches our house, the shop, and our pump house, which both have white, steel siding and blue roofs. Left to my own devices, I’d have painted some flowers and ivy on the high-rise, but as T is more on the conservative side, I restrained myself.
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Oh, and for only $10.00, we got a cart exactly like my old one. It’s handy in the garden, and light enough for me to use.  When we had the shop built, the contractor mixed cement in my old one and a leg broke off of it. I didn’t want to spend $35.00 – $45.00 to replace it. But $10.00? Sweet! 
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I’ve been tagged by Snigsspot for this meme with a lot of ‘fives’ in it. The instructions are:

Remove the blog in the top spot from the following list and bump everyone up one place. Then add your blog to the bottom slot:

1. Fat Chick Crafts

2. Put a Sock in It

3. Suzy Sells Sea Shells

4. Snigs Spot

5. Jackies Garden

Next, select five people to tag: (I’ll just put this here & you do this if you choose – no tags).

1.

2.

3.

4.

5.

What were you doing 10 years ago? Ten years ago I was single and living in the valley with my cats and my koi. I did inside sales for a two person office (brokerage firm for computer hardware components) and I loved it. My boss did outside sales, so I was alone most of the time, but on the phone 95% of the time. My best friend was single then, too, and we spent a lot of time going places together, and just hanging out. My life was pretty much the same as it is now – family and friends – and my garden, and now I have T.

What were you doing 1 year ago? Pretty much the same thing I’m doing this year, at this time. And enjoying the hell out of it.

Five snacks you enjoy:

1. marshmallow peanuts

2. pixie sticks

3. candy corn

4. kettle corn

5. green peas right off the vine

Five songs that you know all the lyrics to:

1. Teen Angel

2. Tell Laura I Love Her

3. Puff the Magic Dragon

4. Big Brother

5. Patches

Five things you would do if you were a millionaire:

1. Buy houses for my kids (small down payments)

2. Pay off all my kids/relatives debts

3. Buy and restore old mustang

4. Set up program to help with poverty in our town

5. Set up program to help the homeless

Five bad habits

1. Smoking – again

2. Chewing my cuticles

3. Potty mouth

4. Correcting people’s english

5. Talking/laughing too loud

Five things you like doing:

1. Gardening

2. Reading

3. Talking on the phone

4. Blogging

5. Traveling

Five things you would never wear again:

1. Hot pants (tells you how old I am!)

2. Go go boots

3. Two piece bathing suit

4. Ratted hair

5. Mini skirts

Five favourite toys:

1. Laptop computer

2. Gardening tools

3. Clip on light (for reading after lights-out)

4. Craft box

5. Crochet needles

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The bees are awful up here now. It’s hot and their food is getting scarce. They ate almost ALL my cherries from my new tree – and a whole lot of my raspberries. I didn’t even know they did that.  And now they’ve started eating on me! 

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We put in what I call my ‘secret garden’ last summer, finishing in September. After I dug all the flower beds, of course I wanted them to look ‘finished’.  So – I did what I definitely know you should NOT do….I planted waaaaay too close, and waaaay too much, and planted some things that I wasn’t even sure what they were!

After our great little mini-vaction,  I came home to a real mess. And, darn it, I couldn’t even blame someone else for it. I knew before we left, that I had tall plants in front of short plants, plants on top of plants, etc., and that I’d have to do something about it. Especially in this corner I’m showing you below. But I was waiting to see what color these hollyhocks were going to be – am sure I did not plant them here.  
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Well, now I know they are white – they bloomed while I was gone.  And this picture above shows how I found them when I got home. I left timers on my hoses when we left, and was watering an hour every day as it was to be in the high 80s, low 90s. (This is more water than the yard and gardens get when I am home).  Water will do wonders. In hindsight – I should have turned the damned water off and just let things wilt and stunt while I was gone!

These hollyhocks came right up on top of my 5′ tall butterfly bush and killed it.  Well, except for at the trunkline where it is sprouting well, about six inches high. I cut off the top and trunk and I think it’ll come back. The hollyhock is also ‘hiding’ two red hot pockers, a white coneflower, a pink coneflower, a liatris, some pansies, and half of the honeysuckle! I decided it was time to ‘relocate’ a few things. (And I don’t CARE what time of year you are SUPPOSED to transplant!)

And now it looks like this:
Img3959 Much better.

Then it was time to do something with part of the middle bed. Daylilies and liatris were hidden by tall bluish things that are through blooming, which are both behind the tall yellowish things which are through blooming. And beside them, this large pinkish thing I thought was lamb’s ear, but am not sure? Well, as you can see below, this was really a big mess.
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But after some more of my ‘relocating’, it now looks like this:
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These grapes are growing great – taking over the whole fence. I’ll be making jam like crazy one of these days. If you can see it in this picture below, there was lavender behind the angel trumpets, and a lilac start behind that, and the spider wort was just messy looking.
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I cleaned it up and now it looks like this:
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And then there was the squash. I was so envious of bloggers talking about their square foot gardening, and decided to put a few things in this way. I knew at the time, that you could NOT grow squash in a ‘square foot’ – but, oh, look – I had to try:Img3937

T screwed some boards on the ends of my raised bed, drilled some holes in them for my twine,  and now the squash can get OFF my green peppers!Img3967

My four way, grafted pear tree is bearing fruit for us – in just one year – but the fruit got a little heavy for these baby branches – here’s the ‘before’ picture, and one ‘after’  T fixed it up for me.
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There was some good news, though. I’ve waited and waited for my sweet peas and they are blooming like crazy. It makes me smile just to look at these vibrant colors, together.

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Now I’m doing absolutely NOTHING for two days – I’m tired, I’m hot, and I hurt all over.

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Img3928 These trees have been planted to be used for paper. I like it that there are signs along the way, informing you of when the trees were planted. Most of these were planted in 1999. I also like the idea of planting for paper — quit raping the forests.

From our site in the state park, we saw this steamer go by. Img3678

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We packed a lunch and took a day trip to do the scenic bypass road which takes you over 4,500 feet up where you can see Mount Hood. It rained poured off and on. Thank God it was more “off” than “on”, as it made visability very limited for a short while.

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I’m glad I got to see these little guys. Img3893

The cloud/fog shrouded Mount Hood and we couldn’t see much of it,  but we didn’t mind – we’ve seen it many times. And we ran across a side road that took us to an old bridge where the road was closed, amd we got to see Sahalie Falls so we were plenty happy.

Only 100 feet high and 20 feet wide, but beautiful. Img3916

Img3904 These wildflowers were growing all over along the sides of the roads.

When we turned to go back out the old road, I yelled for T to stop the car, jumped out and picked these!   Img3921 Huckleberries!

 And these are ALL that I picked. T informed me that all those brown signs we’d been seeing along the smaller roads, were NOT about picking your garbage up – but were asking for our consideration in leaving the berries for the Native Americans. Sorry – we ate these seven!

BUT….on the way back to our site at the State Park, we went back to the little dead end road we’d found the day before – where the sides of the dirt road were covered in blackberry bushes! And picked six more pints. So I’m coming home with a total of 12 pints of Oregon Blackberries! 
Img3886Now, you may think you’ve had good blackberries – but you’ve never tasted anything better than an Oregon Blackberry.

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Water, water, everywhere.

As it was STILL in the 90’s when we left home, running into some rain here in Oregon was a welcome change. We wanted to see all the waterfalls between The Dalles and Troutdale – and decided not to wait for the weather to break. It wasn’t cold out, and it was a warm rain, so off we went. It was a little harder to take pictures, and we had to be careful on the wet paths, but we enjoyed our ‘water’ day.

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Img3757 We didn’t walk up to the bridge because of the rain – but Multnomah Falls is truely impressive – even from the bottom.

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Below is the top of Horsetail Falls:

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And at the bottom of Horsetail Falls:

Img3732 (And no jokes are necessary about being at the bottom of the horse’s tail here!)

Img3765  This is Wahkeena Falls, and below is a picture of the stream it makes – I loved the little flowers growing in there.

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We missed seeing Bridal Veil Falls – one of my favorites – because it was raining pretty hard by the time we got there – and you have to hike up just under half a mile to be able to see it.

When I was younger, you could see some of these falls, pretty well, from the interstate. Now there are so many tall trees and brush that you have to be looking closely, (as close as you can at 70 miles an hour), to glimpse one or two of them.

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Old Highway 30

Yesterday we left the interstate (84) at exit 83 near The Dalles, Oregon – to drive west on the historic section of “Old Highway 30”, which is now known as the Historic Columbia River Highway. Built in 1916, not only is it an engineering marvel, it is majestic.
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Also in 1916, 733 feet above the Columbia River, construction began on Crown Point to build what is called the Vista House. Samuel Lancaster, chief engineer, stated this was to be an “Isle of safety to all the visitors who wish to look on that matchless scene”. This was then:
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And now:  Img3804 

Besides the incredible view of the Columbia River, from 733 feet above it,  inside the Vista House you can see copies of original pictures taken while the highway was being built.

Then: Img3813

Now: Img3783

Then:       Img3690

And now:   Img3691

We love this area, this route, the scenery, the history – and I took 149 pictures! It was warm out, but rained in the afternoon. We didn’t care. We couldn’t see as far down the river as you normally can from the top – but we didn’t care about that, either. It was just one of those really great, relaxing days when all is right with the world.

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How do YOU rate?

Online Dating

Rain posted her blog rating – and, of course, I had to go see what mine was. I got a PG rating. Seems as how I got dinged for using the word “hell” three times, the word “kill” two times, and the word “shoot” once.

I think they are being pretty hard on me, don’t you? After all, I might have been talking about the differences in heaven and hell (I wasn’t), and I might have been talking about killing weeds (I was), and I might have been talking about picture taking (I wasn’t). They made no mention of the fact that sometimes I post about the birds and the bees. LOL

Seriously, I was just amazed that it could edit my blog in one nano second. I am so not high tech – and this is almost all like magic, to me.

I’ll leave you with this warning:

                                     DO NOT LET YOUR CHILDREN READ THIS BLOG!

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