17 July 2013

"Whole Lotta Hope Garden"

Here at the beach we don't get the heat that (they say) is required to grow a hearty garden.  Apparently, tomato's need days of intense heat.  But as I take my dogs on their daily walk about, I keep seeing little gardens on our precious plots of ground in the neighborhood.  I say precious because land is at a premium by the sea, and you usually get more house than yard.  Your yard is the beach and your pool is the ocean.  Not a bad trade off for sure and I'll take it!
 Matter of fact, it's so cool and damp that we even get a wee bit of moss on our cliff sides.

On a completely different note, just because from my 57,000 photos I found this one whilst perusing for blog fodder.  This is a sign that my sister gifted me with, which I put on my mantel for a fresh summer look.  Now, what are the chances there existed a chippy old sign that says the name of my little ol blog?  Thanks sissy.  I LOVE IT!

Meanwhile we have been gallantly throwing  our money into the money pit  remodeling, building, constructing and decorating our Cottage by the Sea for about four years now.  About the same time I started this blog.  Here's  a 'before' picture.

We pretty much gutted the old cottage and started over.

If you're interested in a reminder of the "Birth Of The Arch",  and other shenanigans we've been up to since 2009, head back over and have a look-see.  We've come a long way since then.

It's amazing how far a little lotta wood, cedar shakes and stone will go to invent the cottage of your dreams!
This pic was from last Autumn.  The courtyard was looking great with smiling pumpkins and all.  This is after we installed our Ipe (pronounced in the king's english as Epay).  Beautiful isn't it?

These are the official design architect's plans for our back yard.  Well...  You know how I mentioned that pit we've been throwing money into?  We done run out of money for the pit way before we completed it.  I, for one always  never complain about this.

But I like to think that while we dream our dream, we've made the most of our little plot of backyard.

We decided, beach or no beach, to try growing a garden where the spa should be.  It's a sunny little space and you can see how we professionally outlined our new garden.

First, we headed on over to, The Home Depot and bought 12 bags of very heavy soil, and a little cedar garden kit, us being garden newbies and all.  I say, very heavy because we, and by we,  I mean the hubby part of we, lifted and carried each and every bag from it's perch at Home Depot to our gigantic industrial cart, to our vehicle lined with plastic.  After a leisurely drive home, HE lifted and carried the bags one by one, down the stairs and around the corner where they came to rest right here.  To me it seemed like a piece of cake, but HE said they were very heavy!  Our little garden begot its name when, the lady standing behind our huge overloaded cart of dirt organic soil, rolled her eyes and exclaimed, "you guys have got a whole lotta hope!"  Oh boy :)

All it took was a little wood, (the gardening kit made it easy, peasy), you should try one!  A power tool here and there and some tiny, ready made startings of our favorite plants.

First was a blueberry bush because every morning I start off my day with a bowl of Irish Oats slathered in blueberry's.

 Then we added tomato's, both Early Girl and Big Boy.  Very erotic exotic.

 And since then they grew, and they grew and they grew.  And now they look like...THIS!

I made markers from old wine corks and chopsticks.  This one now sits under our enormous Serano pepper plant.  My salsa has never tasted so hot!

I'm growing two kinds of mint because, I love them both and couldn't make up my mind.  Something which hardly ever always happens around here.  The one on the left is Peppermint, and the one in the foreground is Mojito.  I hear that's a cocktail which I've never tried, but it's also a mint which grows wild in France.  It's a shoe-in for my favorite cocktail, iced tea.

 This is a fabulous, gorgeous, happy yellow,  pumpkin flower.  And from it blooms:

 A pumpkin!  I'm told this pumpkin will thrive and grow into a big orange smiling Jack O Lantern.  This Autumn we will adorn our front porch with as many of these as our Whole Lotta Hope garden supplies.

 Our zucchini is enormous thank you.  How's yours doing?

 So now, only 6 weeks later, wallah!  Not only do I have a green thumb - I think it may be florescent!

Maybe it helps that we have Our Lady of Hope reposing beside our Whole Lotta Hope garden but, something's working over here at the beach.

Love you more than all the bounty in all our gardens,


Today, instead of the promised sunset, I give you the sunrise over our Whole Lotta Hope garden.  Who needs a spa anyway?


13 July 2013


 This is not a face only a mother could love.  EVERYBODY loves this face xoxo

 This is a face you can play with because she is pliable, fun, and has a good sense of humor
(for a dog).

Her favorite thing in the world is to go on a (walk) but, you have to whisper it if your intentions aren't immediate or she'll bark until you come through with your promise.

She and her big brother are inseparable, although he gets a bit testy with her playfulness.  He's 91 now and all her energy exhausts him.  She can be very immature.

 She pouts.

 She begs.

 She gets sleepy and believes in the healthy strategy of a long nap every day.  That's a good plan for life quality in a dog.

She tries to see eye to eye with everybody.  Especially Maggie, since Maggie's room is where she sleeps.

 Unless they don't see eye to eye, and she sleeps here.

 Halloween is her favorite holiday because she gets to wear her girly bow.

 Sometimes just being a puppy wears her out.

She LOVES her rawhide chewy's.  I can bribe her to do anything with the promise of one.  Just don't try to take it back once you have given.

 Have you ever seen such fluffy feet?  Hers, not mine.

 Sleepy yawn.

Funny, furry, face kisser, foot-chaser, paper tearer, tummy rub, tail-chasing, kitty stalking, soft, sweet, cuddly love.  Bailey - yes, named after Bailey's Irish Cream.  It's true, we name our dogs after booze. 

Cockapoodledoodles - hypo allergenic.  Love all wrapped up in a coat of hypo allergenic, non shedding fur.  This momma's best friend.

How about you?  Do you have a best friend you love?  A furry one?  LUCKY YOU!

Love you more than the God given, spectacular sunset we had tonight.

Summer Blessings,