One Year Since the Big Move

My daughter gave me a calendar for last Christmas.  She had gone through and written some things on each of the months and in June she wrote, “One year since you moved”.  At first, it doesn’t seem like a year has gone by since we packed up the Penske truck and took the 3-day (hellish) drive from New Hampshire to Florida.  But if I give it more thought, I can see all that I did within that year, and yes, it is believable.  In fact, I did pack a lot into the past 12 months.

pampas grass
Pampas Grass grew in my northern yard, but it died over one extremely cold winter.

I had hoped to find a house to buy with a good size yard and plenty of place for gardens.  But money, or lack of it, always seems to give so few options in reality.  Florida is no longer the super cheap place to live that it used to be.  Without money, you don’t have many options, and you have to end up settling for the best you can do.

One thing I am very grateful for is that I don’t have to move in the near future.  Hopefully I will never have to move again, but I know better than to plan on that.  At least the house is in good shape.  Aside from replacing the AC unit, there isn’t much to do until the fridge stops working, or something like that.  No major repairs needed (fingers crossed).

In Florida, summer is like my winter was in the North.  Winter was a time to rest (except for shoveling snow and lugging wood for the wood stove).  There was no yard work to be done (unless you count snowplowing the driveway).  And most winters it was manageable. (2015 was a bad one.)  It’s too cold to do much outdoors, and I simply sat at my desk and worked day after day.  I was much busier in summer with my gardens and yard work.

street sweeper
Street Sweeper in May

Summer in Florida is the time to stay inside.  It is NOT the time to garden, unless you want heat-stroke.  Believe it or not, it can even be too hot to go to the beach!  I’d love to have a pool, but since I don’t, I stay inside and sit at my desk and work day after day.  Now, I look forward to Fall, the way I used to look forward to Spring.  That is when I can get back outside and do some gardening / yard work.

Hydrangeas are beginning to bloom in the north.  Next month all my hydrangeas at my old house (none of it is mine any more, but I like to pretend it is) will be blooming.  One day I will go back and take a ride (or walk) past my previous home, just to look at how much the plants have grown.  They were my babies.  I planted them, and wish I could have stuck around to see them grow year after year.  Wishes mean nothing.

Robin in birdbath
An Evening Ritual, Robins Bathing

If I ever have hydrangeas here, they will have to be in pots.  No hydrangeas can possibly withstand the heat of these summers.  They would be wilted all the time.  I’m sticking with citrus trees and tropical plants.  The vegetable garden is still in it’s experimental stage, with netting over it to block the raccoons’ escapades.

So in a year I have done a lot.  (All photos are mine, and were taken while I lived in New Hampshire.)

Fairytale Places I’d Like to Live

Not much is happening in my garden these days, so I thought I’d share some interesting photos I came across at the Free photo sharing site, Pixabay.

These fairytale places contain elements I would require to be truly happy and at peace.

1. I would need a beautiful view, preferably with mountains and / or water.
2. Lots of land, with room to roam and explore.

That’s about it, except maybe fertile land with room for a nice vegetable and flower garden. With room for animals, I’d probably have a lot of those too.

I prefer a small house, but maybe not quite as small as this little red house in the Alps. I wonder where those outdoor steps are leading?  And quite honestly, I’d like to have a window or two in my house!

alpine home Switzerland alps
Alpine Home in Switzerland, Photo shared at Pixabay by Fotoworkshop4You

I like the idea of having to cross a cool bridge to get to my house. I’m not sure that little building is a house or a barn, but this bridge is awesome, and the river looks interesting.
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Okay, in this shot you can’t see my home (haha) but this is the view out my front window. I can watch my sheep graze in the meadow.

English countryside England
England, landscape – contributed to Pixabay by tpsdave

Now this little wood home, or cabin, is right up my ally. Looks to be the perfect size, with a porch and mountain view.  Could those be fruit trees of some kind in the backyard?

small house cabin with porch
Wood Cabin, contributed to Pixabay by Tappancs

And below, a picture of my horse!

Hope you enjoyed my journey through dreamland.  I did get some work done today too.  This was just a quick escape … which we all need now and then.

black horse with long white mane
Iceland Horse, by contributor Blaer at Pixabay

All of these photos can be found at

Good Morning

I’m writing this while I am waking up.  Sleeping in is not a usual thing for me.  I prefer to get up early because I do my best work in the morning, whether that is design work, blogging or house work.  As the day goes on I get lazier.  And by 3 or 4 in the afternoon I am ready for a glass of wine and sit down time.  Or maybe I take a walk or bike ride, but that is the time I stop “working”.

steaming hot coffee
Morning Coffee, Photo by Jill111 @ Pixabay

Today I was still in bed at 9.  Awful.  But I didn’t sleep well, and I usually do.  I don’t feel guilty, but I know my day will seem short.  That’s okay because it’s a Saturday.  The day most people (I guess) go out and do fun things.  I stay home on weekends.  I hate dealing with crowds, and I really don’t have anywhere to go.

It’s a good day to work.  I believe that working and advertising / promoting on weekends is what helps my sales to increase on Mondays.  So promoting often is my goal for weekends.  I also Tweet, add to my FaceBook stores, do some blogging, and so on.

Today I visited some blogs as I checked my e-mail.  Occasionally bloggers will come by and read my blogs – mostly my Seashell blog – and leave comments or “like” a post.  I have more followers and readers there because it’s an older blog.  I’ve updated it recently because I’ve been able to get out to the ocean and collect shells.

I will follow blogs that are good.  Many are photography bloggers, and I do enjoy photos from around the world, and of course pictures of flowers and nature.  If you want to see some nice work, visit Pete Hillmans Nature Photography blog.  That’s where I was earlier today.

I’m tired of food blogs.  Food is everywhere online.  It almost makes me sick of eating… almost.  And animal picture blogs… enough already.  Nature is one thing I never tire of.

And I’ll follow blogs that are written well about subject matter that interests me.  I also like personal photos.  Now that I use my iPhone, it’s simpler to add my pictures.

My Garden March 2nd

This hydrangea blog is less and less about hydrangeas, sadly.  So I must fill up the pages with gardening information.  And my garden is growing nicely.  I’ve eaten 2 big red tomatoes from my plant this past week.  Oh, were they good.  I’ve never eaten homegrown tomatoes from my yard in April!  In New Hampshire they can’t even go in the ground until Memorial Day weekend, and even then, it may be too cold for them to grow much.

I wasn’t eating ripe tomatoes until August in New England.  The cherry tomatoes were ready sooner and that’s why I always grew them as well.

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I make simple salsa with my tomatoes, and use my own scallions, parsley, and basil.  I’m trying to grow garlic, but I’m not sure how it grows in Florida.

My potatoes have about gone by and it’s almost time to dig them up – or dump them out really, since they are growing in bags.  I wonder what they will look like?

2014 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 7,500 times in 2014. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 6 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.