Monday, May 27, 2013

Happy Memorial Day (to Me) : )

Happy Memorial Day, 2013, to everyone, and it's also my 56th birthday today. I've always enjoyed having a holiday weekend for most of my birthdays, but I can't remember too many times it has actually fallen on this day. There have been several Indy 500 races on my birthday and I graduated from college on my 22nd birthday. Hard to believe that was 34 years ago today!

Pictured above, is my reproduction 13-star flag, dating to the mid 1930s. It was probably bought first for either Connecticut's Tercentennial in 1935 or Guilford's in 1939. I hang it outside once or twice a year to prevent it from fading, although it's age-yellowed a bit.

I apologize to all of my readers for my absence lately. I'll be back to posting more regularly soon!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Wind Chimes

Pink Gardens' wind chimes were making such a beautiful "racket" the other day that I wanted to capture their aural essence visually. They sounded hollow, but harmonious, tone-full and soulful, balanced and beautiful.

Happy Mother's Day!

This is a perfume "decanter" from the 1920s in the shape of a crescent moon. The stopper is sanded glass for a tight fit.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

A Little Tease, Works-in-Progress

Turned on its side outside, drying in the sun this afternoon, is a four-drawer chest I'm working on for a friend. I completely stripped it and primed it inside and out with a nice bright white to give myself a clean slate. I'm going with all the flaws in this old wooden piece, highlighting each and every repair someone made to it through the years. The main color is a grayish green, inside and out for a beachy look. This side is rather Harlequin-like, with the diamond-shape segments of the checkerboard a new motif for me. I was analyzing an antique afghan my grandmother made and then decided to use those diamond "pieces" in my next piece of art. More to come as I finish it!

My newest painting is on industrial-grade grooved plywood. I found a bunch of pieces of it at a construction site, cut in various sizes and thrown out next to a dumpster. I walked home with all I could carry under my arms! This is a first layer of painting. I'll sand this down and then do as many as 12-15 more layers of paint and glazes. The right edge will get some gold-leaf paint, evocative of a frame as none of my pieces are ever framed.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

AfternoonColour: May Day 2013

I placed my long-lived cactuses outside today for their summer sojourn. This year they're on tree stumps next to the shade garden. Dragonwing Begonias join them after wintering over inside once again. All photos clickable to enlarge, as always.

My pink African violets are producing like crazy now.

Shade garden and beyond. That's an ancient pink azalea shrub, which almost resembles a laurel bush until it blooms.

Fun with Photoshop filters. Another shot of my beautiful (if I do say so myself, lol) purple violets. They're in a single indoor garden pot along with a second variety of purple and the pink seen in this post, too.

Looking slightly north this view includes the tiny road to town. In the distance is some Land Trust acreage and then a condominium.

Slightly longer view shows the fuzzy dark green foliage of this pink violet.

Poppin' Fresh (Up)

My violets are really going crazy these days. All three plants in this indoor garden are blooming, I'll take it out on the porch tomorrow and photograph the entire thing with good outdoor light.

Probably the last Daffodil arrangement this year. They were really beautiful and strong this year, though.

I think the back of flowers is just as interesting as the front...
This forsythia was heavily damaged in the last 25 inch snowfall. As soon as these meager, though pretty, blooms are finished, I'll prune the bush to the ground and let it come up fresh all summer. It should be perfect for next spring.

Pointing the camera towards the ground, the petals remain a solid look in the strong, late afternoon sun.

I have at least six varieties of ferns. They range from bright green to dark green, from frilly to thick, matter to shiny. They all love shade or "dappled" sunlight the best, though.
My mother's perennial Primrose has come up once again. It seems to be getting smaller each year, but what's left always makes me smile.

This variety of fern has a fuzzy frond when full grown. The late afternoon sun really gave them a golden hue.

My pink granite bird bath. I gave this to my mother for Mother's Day in the mid 1980s and I've moved it to wherever I live. This is the same type and color of granite as my ancestral family's granite quarry in Leete's Island, Guilford, Connecticut. Our quarry furnished much of the granite for the base of the Statue of Liberty.
 Blooming valiantly on broken stems. Next year will be their year!

My grandmother brought this ornamental Ribbon grass to the shoreline area in the 1930s. I believe she sent away for it from a western company. It grows perfectly almost anywhere and I always bring it with me. I have a couple of dozen clumps of these around Pink Gardens now. This one is only a few inches tall right now. They'll get to about two feet with four foot tall "wheats."

This is a giant fern. My friend Mary gave several of them to me a few years ago. They grow to about three feet tall and have dark fronds with a sheen to them.

A slightly longer view of my violet garden. The pink plant can be seen peeking from behind, and there is a second purple plant. The flowers are slightly lighter and smaller then this one.

 Rescued from the woods, Solomon Seals just began to pop up from the ground this season.

One of the three white Triliums I found under some wild rose bushes last year, I transplant them to the shade garden right next to the granite bird bath. I planted three last summer and now I have four! They've only broken ground in the past two weeks and are about four-inches tall. They should get another foot taller and will have beautiful white flowers.
Last But Not Least
The vegetable garden this afternoon. I've established perennial gardens all around the perimeter of it. I have a few varieties of day lilies, iris, sedum, foxglove, rose campion, ribbon grass, cinquefoils, hosta, thistles, Solomon seals, jack-in-the-pulpits, and I'm sure a few more, lol. As each perennial finishes its cycle, I plant Marigold seeds so by fall it's full of tall orange flowers.