end of summer blooms

We spent Saturday morning running errands, followed by lunch at one of our favorites. Before we left, Basil and I took a walk with my camera. It seems every week or so the flowers in our yard are changing.

Remember earlier this summer, we had a tropical looking plant in our yard? Our Little Shop of Horrors plant?

This is what it looks like now:

Happy Holiday Weekend…

One Year Ago Today

I remember checking my schedule remotely from home. I had no meetings / appointments of my own, and the spa was slow. There were no classes or events scheduled in my meeting rooms. Having the ability to work remotely via computer, I called in and said I was doing so.

About 4:pm, I was glad I did:

We were having a wind storm. It BROKE A TREE in our yard. That tree? Landed on the power lines and started to smoke.

I watched it for a while. When I saw FLAMES, I called in the Big Guns.

Portland’s Finest. Hello, boys. Can you fix this for me?

They christened our street with this:

and continued to watch THIS:

There were five fires in the tree at one point. The fire trucks stayed a while. They eventually came to my door and said it was not safe for them to do anything until the electric company turned off the power. The electric company was seriously busy, dealing with emergencies all over Portland, the wind storm aftermath. (Tree actively burning? Non emergency?) Okay. I was FLIPPIN. They instructed me to call 911 if “the situation suddenly takes a turn.” Fire in a tree? Wind?

You know? It actually didn’t take a turn. There was a police officer sitting in their car, there to watch our property. It made me feel better. At one point, the fire was HUGE. I think the officer called fire department back in…

I could not sleep. Finally, at 2:AM, the electric company turned up, to turn off the power.

The fire department stopped the fire, and within a few days time, the tree was cut back. As much as it could be. We have a river going through our property, that is part of the Fanno Creek system. The Friends of Fanno Creek keep property owners from doing much in the way of change or development, which is good, generally. In this case? It means a tree cannot be fully removed.

ah… well.

I thought they were supposed to be nocturnal…

After a busy morning running around, I am now enjoying a sunny afternoon at home with Basil. Some friends decided to stop by.

I thought these guys only came out at night? There was a Big Mama and these two cute babies. These guys were playing in the tree.

Big Mama took off up the river. I quickly changed to zoom lens and quietly went out on the deck.

They hadn’t seen me yet.

“Wait up… I’m followin’ you…”

“Wait, should we go back this way?”

“Hmm. I think we are being watched. Here, get behind me.”

Basil is giving me the side – eye now, since I wouldn’t let him out to play with those kids.

Maybe it’s because I’m making him rock his star sweater today? It was cold this morning…


We have blueberries that are turning blue, and apples in our trees.

What should I do with them?

This morning I was wiped out after my workout; in fact, it was a struggle to get through the entire Shred. (My least favorite part of Shred, by the way? Knee circles in the warm up. No.) I had gone on an extra long walk early with Basil, but that’s not really unusual. I’m not usually tired after my workouts. I’m done, but not tired. I needed energy.

When I was young my mom used to make no bake peanut butter balls. She’d roll them in all kinds of toppings – carob powder was my favorite.

I came up with an energizing recipe inspired by my mom’s peanut butter balls.

I started with one cup peanut butter. I used Adam’s: ingredients = peanuts.

I added 2 scoops chocolate protein powder.

5 tablespoons hemp hearts!

2 tablespoons molasses. Made about three hours away, in Eugene!

Rolled into about 3/4 inch balls, with hemp hats on:


No hemp hearts? Substitute nuts, seeds, oats, oat bran, granola… I’m already thinking of the next ones I’m going to make.

Keep in refrigerator:

They just got a “Mmm – Hmm” and a “NOM” from Jason.


With the 4th of July holiday this weekend, I should be thinking about good old american apple pie. Any other ideas for apples?

American readers, what are your plans for the holiday weekend?

Do you need to laugh so hard that it will concern your dog? Read David Thorne’s blog. Hilarity.

Happy Friday + holiday, everyone!

voodoo lily !

Jason, Basil and I went for a walk around the property this afternoon.

sniffin' sniffin'


It was beautiful today, and I wanted to check the progress of our blueberry bushes.

They look like grape bunches:

There are SO many this year! :)

So exciting! I love watching food grow in our yard!!

Here I was waiting patiently (heh.) for summer in our unseasonably cold May…  now? Summer is Most Definitely here, and we have tropical plants in our yard!

This amazingness is commonly called a Devil’s Tongue (our neighbor up the road is a Master Gardener, she told me!), but I like the name VooDoo Lily better. This photo of it reminds me of the Caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland:

Jason calls it our Little Shop of Horrors plant…

I love it. It stinks, though.

We wandered around and I took photos:

Can you spot the bird house?

I love these blue flowers and little pods – anyone know what they are?

We live next to a golf club. Thankfully folx don’t park their carts in our yard, though.

Little puffy clouds … brilliant blue sky!

Basil spotted another four legged friend up the street.

…and this? our doorbell !

Happy Sunday, everyone! Hope the weekend was wonderful!

wildlife evades me

We have a variety of wildlife around our property. Lately I have seen a large crane (holy wingspan, batman!) flying low over our back deck. I’ve seen it three times in the past two days, but never have my camera at the ready.

The other day I was attempting some yoga on our back grass, and heard the cute quiet quacks of a mother duck… there were about seven or eight Brand New Ducklings with mama duck! I ran in to get my camera, scrambling to quickly change my lens… by that time they were gone.

Yesterday afternoon however, I was able to capture this series:

Uh oh. Who is that?

Waving my tail will keep her away!

No? How about flattening it over my body?

Hmm, I’ll go this way.

La la la…

Hmm, down there?

Wave the tail! No, curve the tail. Wait…

Oh, okay!


Made it!

Wow, look at at that HUGE dachshund!


morning greens and property colors

Today began as many do…  a green monster for me:

…and a little bit for Basil:

He loves his greens… I give him spinach leaves to eat while I’m making our GM.

After First Breakfast, we went for a walk around the property with the camera. Our river almost flooded yesterday. *Gulp* it makes me nervous when it gets close!

A Family of Bandits closely watching Basil and I:

hello, mama


I don’t mind these little guys; we generally keep to our own space. We had one on our deck once, up at our sliding door, up on hind legs waving at us. No more cat food on the deck.

Our apple trees are bloomin’ pretty:

apple blossoms


I’m excited for apples! Jason would rather they not produce : apples = bees!

Flowers, flowers everywhere:

Flowers in our side yard…

I love pink!

The only thing in my garden right now, chives:

chives !


…and what yard / garden post would not be complete without some Basil:

oh, Basil ...

oh, Basil indeed!  :) Happy Monday, everyone!