Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Mushroom Nerd

Fun Fact: In addition to being an enthusiastic bird geek (remember, always meant in the very best way!), I'm also a bit of a mushroom nerd. While I know a tiny amount about birds, I cheerfully admit to knowing absolutely nothing about 'shrooms. Aren't they cool, though?

Fun Fact #2: Miss Tallulah Mae has, twice, eaten mushrooms from our backyard--and twice, she had to go to the doggie emergency hospital to, in essence, have her stomach pumped. Good times.
These images were taken at the delightfully low-tech San Diego Mycological Society Mushroom Fair. Cute little tableau above, yes?
It's a bit unfortunate that, from the back, this little mushroom picker appears to be flashing his...hmm...toadstool, perhaps?

Monday, March 30, 2009

Spring, She Has Sprung

Even though the climate is so mild here in SoCal and there ARE things in bloom pretty much all year round, we definitely notice when it's Spring...there are flowers everywhere, blossoms big and small, shy blossoms and loud exuberant blossoms. Lovely, they are, one and all.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Tallulah-Palooza Friday

Tallulah Mona Lisa Mae.

Five Senses Friday

Ranunculus from my cutting garden...first time I've tried to grow them.
My beloved goldfinches are back in force this year. I don't really have them in my garden, but they sit in a tall tree just over the fence in my neighbor's yard and give forth with their sweet songs. (That's not a goldfinch above, alas, but I *think* it's some sort of finch.)

Irish soda bread from St. Patrick's Day--it was a BIG loaf, so we ate it for more than a week (and may I just say, yum!).
Sweet peas...I really can't get enough of their fragrance. I close my eyes and just inhale...
I found this gorgeous bee lying on the ground (RIP, Miss Bee) when I was walking the dog...such amazing creatures. They're really quite soft and downy...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Artie Choke

Last year I bought an artichoke plant in a 4-inch pot; this section of the garden also had 3 tomato plants, 2 tomatillo plants, and a Japanese eggplant. I harvested 2 tiny (and woody) artichokes and figured, oh well. Since my style of gardening is, "Leave it alone and see what it does; even if we don't want it there let's not rip it out until something else is ready to go in," we left this plant alone. No fertilizer. Very little water. And it grew and grew...and grew. Here's someone to give some context for just how large this artichoke plant is--and observe how very happy she is to be participating in the 0h-so-fun photo shoot: I went over to check it out for the first time in a while (even though it's 8 feet from my back door!!!), and lo and behold: Three artichokes!!! (Can you tell from the exclamation points that I'm very excited by this?!! I still get a thrill EVERY time a seed germinates or a rose blooms.) And a gratuitous close-up:
Just lovely, no? Fingers crossed that it tastes as good as it looks...

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


(That stands for "Friends of Tallulah Mae," BTW.) I love these cats--they're brothers, and the one in front is called Nicholas (I don't know the other one's name--oh, and much of that seeming bulk is really just masses of very fluffy fur. They're really not that fat!). Nicholas is quite bold--he'll walk up to within about two feet of Tallulah Mae and just stand there; his owners say he understands that when a dog is on a leash it can't chase him. Tallulah is very interested in cats and always stops and looks for them at the houses where she knows they live. Then she'll just sit and stare at them for as long as you'll let her...

This photo is so funny...they look like kitty bookends!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Few(er) Words

After that wordier-than-usual post yesterday, few words today...

Monday, March 23, 2009

Tag, I'm It

I was tagged by the talented Alice at the lovely blog Peapods to participate in this little Q&A...I've never been tagged before, so here goes! Below are the "rules":

1. Respond and rework. Answer the questions on your blog, replace one question you dislike with a question of your own invention (I added the last question).
2. Tag eight other untagged people.

What is your current obsession?
Hmm…I have quite a few (!), but I’m fixated on replanting our front yard in a water-friendly way (rationing is coming this summer). Nothing seems quite right. That photo up there is how our front looked a few years ago—81 lavandula heterophylla plants (this is so-called sweet lavender), which took off and were absolutely spectacular both to the eyes and the nose. They began to die after about five years…and the mailman stopped delivering our mail because of all of the bees (really, that’s true! Ha!). I ripped them out and planted an English variety that stays small…but it’s not happy and only a few plants have survived. Onward!

What are you wearing right now?
My favorite washed-a-million-times-ratty-at-the-hem jeans; a man’s snap-front floral shirt; my Danskos (which need replacing, I’m reminded).

Do you nap a lot?
I do! It’s a wonderful pleasure that I share with my sweet husband: a cold rainy Sunday with tummies full of milky lattes and pancakes, followed by a morning nap—a guilty luxury.

Who was the last person you hugged?
My husband—I’m not really much of a hugger (except for him!).

What’s for dinner?
French lentil and dandelion greens soup (made by my sweet personal chef/husband); salad of lettuces from the garden with homemade salad dressing; a loaf of Kalamata olive bread from Con Pane; glass of crisp Sauvignon Blanc.

What was the last thing you bought?
The above-mentioned Kalamata olive loaf.

What are you listening to right now?
Jordi Savall playing viol de gamba.

What is your favorite weather?
Crisp fall weather—blue skies, lots of white clouds, chilly enough to wear sweaters and scarves on a long hike and then come inside for a hot beverage.

What’s on your bedside table?
Too much! Tchotchkes: a pink “cold” faucet handle; a green Korean pottery dog; the hand from a mannequin; sweet peas from the garden in an old soda bottle. Library books: 3 books about gardening (c.f. “What is your current obsession” above), one about bringing birds into your yard. A book, A Walk in the Country, by Tessa Evelegh, about crafting with natural objects. A New Yorker from December (!), a several-months-old issue of Vanity Fair. (hey, I get behind on mags); a novel, The River Wife, by Jonis Agee.

Say something to the person/s who tagged you.
Alice, I’m so glad I just discovered your lovely blog—your photos, digital and film, are amazing.

If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you want it to be?
This is a hard one! I do love my house right here and now…but a cabin somewhere, maybe New Mexico, bordering on a protected wilderness area, might be nice, too!

Favorite vacation spot?
Again, too hard to choose! Japan, for sure; England a close second; the big island of Hawaii third. I know, I know—but I can’t choose just one!

Name the things you can’t live without.
My husband, my dog, my parents and brother, all of my sweet friends; cello music; chocolate; coffee and cookies; a garden—there are a lot more, but I’ve already cheated.

What would you like to have in your hands right now?
Well, it’s dinner time, so…maybe a grilled cheese sandwich with tomato and some seasoned curly fries?

What is your favorite tea flavor?
I like a nice strong Darjeeling, although Peet’s had a special-edition Winter Solstice tea that really rocked.

What would you like to get rid of?
Hot flashes!

If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go?
Just for an hour? Anywhere I could see the aurora borealis

What is your favorite snack?
Salty: potato chips, any kind, any flavor, any time!
Sweet: McVitie’s digestives (actually, any kind of cookie is my favorite at the moment it enters my mouth!)

Do you feel as if you’ve lived a previous life or lives? If yes, where and when and what did you do?
I definitely think so…I’m sure, for instance, that I lived in London in the 19th century. I’m not sure what I did then—maybe a governess? As I walked down certain streets in London, I had the most overwhelming deja vu.

That was fun! I don't have eight people to tag, but I'm tagging these three blogging girlies:
1. Robin
2. Nancy
3. Stephanie

Friday, March 20, 2009

Tallulah-Palooza Friday

Peel me a grape...

Five Senses Friday

This gloriously wacked-out house . . . let's move in for a close-up, shall we (wow)?
Tallulah Mae barking in her sleep (awwww).
This sandwich from Con Pane in Pt. Loma (and yes, I did eat all of it, thank you very much, after I scraped off the sprouts) (yum).
The ocean (mmmm).
The spiky edges of this beautiful all-grown-up pinecone (ouch).

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Pinecone Nursery

Sweet little baby pinecones...

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Chickens in da House

Check out these oh-so-cute salt and pepper shakers. Everyone knows I do lurve me some chickens--see the chicken posse over there behind them? I'm not keeping them, though...they're looking for a good home elsewhere.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Texture-y Tuesday

One from nature, one from human hands...

Monday, March 16, 2009

Hi, Hydrangea

Lovely...I love hydrangeas in all their colors, but this dusky rose is especially nice.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Tallulah-Palooza Friday

"Beam me up, Scotty!"

Five Senses Friday

I've joined in on Five Senses Friday, along with a group of talented bloggers; this was organized by the amazing blogger at Abby Try Again; if you go to this post, you'll see the list of those who are playing...go check out everyone's different experiences of the five senses (and don't worry, Tallulah Mae fans--it will ALWAYS be Tallulah-Palooza Friday on Foziewisp!).Sight

This could go into several categories, but I'll file under "sight"--check out the big black bee up there; they LOVE this wisteria and you can hear them buzzing as you walk under it.

Listening to this 75-cent rummage sale purchase: it's fantastically cheesy. Bonus:

Hula instructions on the back! (Warning: this links directly to YouTube and the video starts playing immediately...)



A yummy latte from this place.




This pink and velvety nose...

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Tiny Chest O' Cuteness

Isn't this sweet? It's a little tiny chest covered in embossed paper with what appear to be red bakelite handles...found it at an estate sale. I'm guessing it was maybe used to keep stationery in? Gloves? Or...what? Everyone take a guess in the comments. (The drawers aren't divided, so jewelry doesn't seem likely. ) I haven't decided what to keep in it yet--maybe embroidery floss (though I have WAY too much of it to fit in this little thang!) or paper scraps for crafting purposes.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Knitsmet (Knitting Plus Kismet)

Miss Robin and I were sitting at Rebecca's coffeehouse enjoying a scone; she was embroidering and I was knitting. When I pulled out my knitting, the man sitting opposite us says, "I'm a knitter too!" and proceeds to pull out of his backpack about 7 different WIPs (works in progress, dontcha know). Wow--we're well and truly impressed. Then he says that he has a stash of yarn that he's selling, cheap--it had belonged to his landlady's sister, or some such--are we interested? Um, sure...so we finish our scones and coffee and go to his house, a few blocks away (this was all perfectly safe, by the way: he sits and knits at the shop across the street, and I know the woman who works there, who knows him, plus the vibe from him was fine, blah blah blah. Plus there were two of us and one of him!). He was a very nice older man: cat owner, knitter, drinker of coffee and eater of scones...what's not to like?

He first pulled out some not-so-interesting yarn, then my eyes lit up: up there you see a half-pound of natural, undyed alpaca (price tag attached: $22.00); 3 skeins of Silky Wool (about $7.50 per skein); and 6 balls of cotton/linen yarn (about $6.50 per ball). I know it's a bit tacky to be talking prices, but in this case I mention them because all of this lovely, luscious, luxurious fiber cost me $9.00! I know!!!!! (Happy dance. And thanks to Robin for nudging me along to go check it out.)

Knitting plus kismet = knitsmet!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Sweetest of Peas

Can you see it? The very first sweet pea has bloomed! Yay yay yay. They're really one of my favorite flowers--they're sweetly old-fashioned; easy to grow; have blooms that look as if they've been painted with watercolors; and, oh yes, they smell heavenly. (Also, "sweetest pea" is a favorite term of endearment around here... )
Go, Lathyrus odoratus, go!

Monday, March 9, 2009

50 and 500

Yes, it's Barbie's 50th birthday today; she's only a few years older than me! This is actually one of my very own Barbies. Now that I look at her, I see a resemblance: I also have blue eyes, brown shoulder-length hair, bangs; I wonder if she needs to hide her greys, too? Hmm... I always loved the accessories--I still have all of the shoes, hangers, and these goodies. Love the fur-covered bathroom scale. Let's take a closer look, shall we? Barbie weighs...110 pounds--there's the difference; I haven't weighed that since I was about 10 years old! This case is filled with Barbies, Skippers, Francies, and a Scooter (she came with her own skateboard, long before skateboards were cool!), as well as their clothes; my mom actually made some of them...tiny little stitches, snaps, etc. Hours of fun were had with these dolls--I think they encouraged my creativity as I made up whole stories and lives for them to lead.
Happy Birthday, Barbie!!!
(The 500 in the title of this post refers to my having posted 500 times...wow.)