Sunday, July 12, 2015

Almost Done!

I am coming into the home stretch on my Autumn Sampler.  This has been a super fun project.  I still have to go back through for touch ups that require confetti stitches.  I really love the colors and know that it will look fabulous in my living room.  We will see how long it takes me to frame it...
We had a good, albeit busy weekend.  We have been working hard lately on the yard and garden.  We live in drought ridden California.  (We have been through this a few times.)  Our area of the Central Coast is known for being pretty water conscious, but we got our letter last week talking about what we have to do to conserve more.  Bill looked at me and said, "Well, we either have to get rid of the garden or we have to recycle water."  He went down to Home Depot and came home with several large buckets.  So we are now capturing shower water and dishwashing water.  I thought we would save a couple of gallons a day, but it is more like 8-10 gallons a day.  We use the water on all of the flowering plants in the yard.
So here is the irony in this situation.  Because the water is recycled, we are actually watering the plants more, because we have to empty our buckets daily.  The flowers are thriving.  The other byproduct of this, is that we come home after work and play in the yard after we water the flowers.  We have been eating almost all of our dinners out there.  Afterwards, we play with Liesl and throw her ball.  We are spending a lot more time in the yard than we used to and enjoying all of the work we have done.
I just knew that we could not let the garden die.  While it is just a small cottage garden, we both love gardening. But I know it is really important to Bill.  When we first met, he was living in his condo, and said that he so missed a garden.  I can always see how happy he is when he is outside working in the yard, wearing his big floppy hat.  What makes it an even more beautiful scene is that he always has Liesl right there with him while he works.  Liesl and her daddy have such a special connection, and the sight of the two of them walking around the yard, makes my heart happy.
I have been feeling very blessed lately.  After Bills bout with Melanoma earlier this year, I went to the dermatologist for the first time ever.  I found an amazing doctor.  He found a few spots that he felt we pre-cancerous.  So a few weeks ago, I had a little surgery to have a large mole removed and a couple more spots frozen off.  I was not prepared for how much freezing would hurt.  Holy Smokes!  However, it could have been so much worse, so I consider myself so lucky.  My doctor shared his journey and said he would not be alive himself if he had not had a colonoscopy earlier than necessary.  He said no matter how scared you are, go do it.  It might save your life!
So I am counting my blessings and walking in gratitude.  May you be blessed! 

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Liesl's Night of Terror

Poor Liesl.  She has been terrorized the past few nights by fireworks in our town.  Fireworks are legal here, much to my chagrin.  However, this only applies to "Safe and Sane" fireworks.  Unfortunately, despite posted warnings by our city, quite a number of people have had, what we suspect, were illegal, professional fireworks, like the kind you fire into the sky.  This happened all over our town and included a couple of people on our street.  We were sort of used to the huge bangs that rattled the windows and lit up the sky going intermittently until midnight since Thursday.  Liesl has been a nervous wreck and has not eaten for the past couple of days from the stress, despite our trying to provide comfort.  Last night was terrible though.  The fireworks were relentless, and poor Liesl was terrified.  It sounded like we were under siege.
I have shared in the past, that Liesl is not a cuddly, sit in your lap kind of dog.  She loves to be kissed, hugged and petted, but she is not a cuddler.  Last night she was snuggled between us on the sofa, panting in terror.  Exhausted, we decided to turn in for the night, but she made sure she was touching both of us burrowed in between us.  I stayed awake petting her and trying to comfort her.  But she just shook really hard and panted.  I think the fireworks continued until after midnight. 
Bill and I  both got up early to coax her outside to got potty this morning.  She was so scared to be outside and kept trying to run back into the house.  This is totally not her nature.  Usually, she takes her job guarding us and her house seriously and is pretty fearless.  It has been so sad to see her with her little head hung with fear in her eyes.  It took her so long to go potty this morning.  We decided to just work on the yard today to make her comfortable in her queendom again.  She finally trotted around, let me give her a bath and a beard trim and is now napping off her busy day.  She is still a little jumpy but is overall back to herself, thank goodness. I was happy to see her finally eat her breakfast with her usual gusto.
Despite the noise and trauma, it has been a lovely weekend.  We went to a lovely barbecue yesterday and we even got to Skype with Bill's beautiful little bitty granddaughter last night.  We got some much needed work done on the yard today.  We got so much done.  I even got my Adirondack chairs repainted.  The weather has been lovely.  Not too hot, not too cold.  We have had a nice time, just hanging out together. 
So we are extra grateful for peace and quiet today.  We are grateful that we got to do some much needed work on the yard today and it looks beautiful.  Most of all, we are grateful for our little family and that our little furgirl is feeling brave again!

Friday, July 3, 2015

A Wonderful Day!

Today was such a beautiful day.  The weather was just gorgeous.  We both had the day off today, since the holiday falls on a Saturday.  It was great having a Friday off.  It was like having a little bonus day.  The original plan was to do some yard work, but we ended up having one of those days of just living in the moment.  It was beautiful.
We decided to drive out to Carmel Valley, about a half hour drive from us.  There is an absolutely beautiful regional park there that covers about 4,500 acres.  We all needed a nice walk, and Liesl was thrilled once we got there.  This park is on the same route as Liesl's v-e-t, so she was a bit anxious until we got out of the car and she got to trot through the park.  She had her happy walk going which made us happy to see. 
Afterward, we stopped at our very favorite nursery.  They have amazing plants and are always an inspiration.  While I like to putter in the garden, my sweet Bill loves to garden.  He has a special talent with begonias.  He has a couple that are in our yard that are huge.  Here is one that he has been growing for the past few years:
The nursery had the most breathtaking begonias today.  I wanted to make sure that Bill got some new ones for his collection.  He picked out a couple which are lovely:

As you can see the blooms are as big as my hand.  The one below is a little smaller but so pretty:
We had a fun time buying new seeds, and Bill was happy with his new pretties.
We also had a little stop at our favorite wine shop and then the grocery store for barbecue yummies for the weekend.  By the time we got home, it was naps for all.  (I absolutely swear by naps and always have!)
So we are ready for the celebration this weekend.  Have a wonderful and safe Independence Day!  And remember being safe means wearing lots of sunscreen!