Spring Has Sprung…

The most vibrant of our azaleas has bloomed.

The fern fronds are unfurling.

Everything is green. Our large rhododendron plants are just starting to open their buds. This is the back side of our home.

This smaller rhododendron is in full bloom.

The rosebud azaleas are close to their prime.

This is view of our side yard looking to the front of our property. Our house is on the left and garage/shop on the right.

Yellow Rhododendrons

I’m real excited about all the peony buds this year!

This is one of our Top Hat Blueberry plants on our deck.  Fresh blueberries are in our future.

We are in another rainy pattern. They are talking about some sunshine in the near future.

Addyson is 2 months old today. We were texted some photos the last couple of days.

They’ve been storing breast milk and daddy was able to successfully feed her for the first time on Mother’s Day.

2 months old with Rayna keeping a watchful eye on her! Isn’t she lovely…So happy for the easy way we have these days to share photos. It makes being far away so much easier. Are you near or far from your grandkids?

Linking up to ABC Wednesday for the letter S. Thanks to Mrs. Nesbitt and her loyal team.

Seattle Japanese Garden

This is my second post about our stroll through the Japanese Garden. If you click here you can see my previous post with some history about the garden.

Our lovely stretch of sunshiny days has come to an end and we have a wet forecast for the next several days. Because of the forecast we went out and did the yard work yesterday. I mow and Dear whacks the edges. When I mow I get 10,000 steps in before I know it. I took some photos of the yard in the Spring sunshine. Here’s one shot of our yard from yesterday. The apple blossoms and pear blossoms are gone and the trees are leafing up nicely. I’ll share more tomorrow.

A Rare Sunny Morning…

My new header photo was taken at the Roozengaarde Gardens in Mt. Vernon in the state of Washington. When we heard we might have a few hours of sunshine on Tuesday, Dear and I zoomed up north about an hour from our home to see the very end of the tulip festival offerings. I’m first sharing the photos I took out in the few remaining fields of tulips.

 

The well planned garden and the borders of tulips in alphabetical order to help you know what you might want to order were still lovely to  enjoy. I’ll be sharing photos from those areas next.

We had a warming up today which is much appreciated. We even were able to throw open a few windows to enjoy the fresh air.

First Hodgepodge of May

1. Can you tell I’m embracing a Cinco de Mayo theme here this week? Do you like Mexican food? What’s your favorite dish? How about on the side-black beans, pinto beans, refried beans, rice? What about heat-mild, medium, hot? Will you celebrate with Mexican food and drink on May 5th aka Cinco de Mayo?

We embrace Mexican food every week. Most Tuesdays you’ll find us at La Corona sitting at a table served by our favorite waitress, Liliana. When she sees us drive up she heads to the bar to make us our Cadillac Margaritas. We’ve become good friends sharing life experiences together with her. We enjoy medium hot. No plans so far for Cinco de Mayo as we already had our Tequila Tuesday this week. We enjoy Mexican food at home, too. Photo is from a couple years ago before I embraced a new hairdo and my grey. Growing up in Montebello, California in my elementary school days we would have special assemblies and dance the Mexican Hat Dance on Cinco de Mayo.

2. Ever been to Mexico? For work or holiday? Love it or no? If you haven’t been is this a place you’d like to visit? Can you speak Spanish?

Surprising that even though we grew up in Southern California Dear and I have only been to Mexico once to pick up Saltillo floor tiles (a type of terracotta tile) with my cousin and his wife who were building a home. It’s referred to as the perfectly imperfect tile. This was not a vacation in any stretch of the imagination. We are happy to have made it to Tecate and back alive to talk about it. Part of the story involves us getting a ride by the Tijuana police back to the border.

3. What’s one thing you may accomplish this month?

I know that this month I’ll be getting a large part of my quota in of visiting family. We will head east to visit Addy and her folks again and then I will fly south to see my dear old pop for his 94th birthday and see as many siblings and nieces and nephews that I can fit in and who have the time to visit with me.

4. If you were mayor of your village, city, or town, what’s one thing you’d like to see changed, done away with, revamped, or accomplished? Is serving in public office something you’ve ever seriously considered?

If I was mayor of my village I’d space out city projects so that every major street in town wasn’t torn up at the same time. No interest whatsoever in serving in public office, thank you.

5. What’s something that may be popular, but that you just don’t get?

Green “healthy” smoothies.

6. Can’t let this week slip by without mentioning Thursday May 4th is Star Wars Day. As in ‘May the 4th be with you’ ahem. Are you a fan of the Star Wars series? Exactly how much of a fan are you? On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being ‘I’ve seen every film, own the action figures, might have dressed as Darth Vader for Halloween one year’, and 1 being, ‘what’s a Vader?’ -where do you land?

Well we embraced the series back in the day.  Our middle son always had little figurines of Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker in his pocket. I still have those in one of my china cabinets to give back to him.  On the scale, I’ll say 3. And…just to name drop, we were in a small group with George Lucas’ sister in the late 70’s and early 80’s.

7. Scroll back through your blog posts and in three sentences or less tell us the general theme of your fourth blog post. Does it still ring true today? Is it a topic you re-visit on your blog from time to time?

My blog is about all the things I enjoy and wonder about. What I see in the world around me and who I see it with. It’s always been heavy with photos because I’m visual. My fourth post dated March 5, 2007 was a devotional about Trusting and Obeying. Yes, it still rings true and I post devotionals occasionally and Sunday Hymns every week. Jesus will always be a part of my blog since He has saved me and leads me on in my life.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Today Dear and I enjoyed some time at Roozengaarde Gardens in Mt. Vernon enjoying the end of Tulip season there. My photo at the top of the post and this one above was taken at the gardens. I’ll be publishing a few posts of all the beautiful tulips we enjoyed soon.

Linking up with Joyce at From This Side of the Pond for Wednesday Hodgepodge.

Farewell to April ’17

A view from my kitchen window on Saturday April 29th.

The apple tree is in full blossom and several other plants are greening up nicely and pushing forth their buds.

It’s a very green time of the year here. This is a view from the back of our home looking towards our old pear tree in the distance beyond the chain link fence.

The steps into our home from the deck.

Some of the apple blossoms close-up.

The Pink Dogwood is just now getting ready for it’s full glory with it’s pink blooms unfurling.

We’ve had a quiet weekend except for me going to a Sounders game with our daughter and son-in-law on Saturday evening. We went down early in the game and in the 2nd half at the 74th minute we were down by 3 goals to none. In the last fifteen minutes of the game we scored 3 goals to tie the game. The last few minutes were amazing. Too bad about the folks that left early thinking we would lose. Weather wise we had some dry stretches in the morning and into the afternoon the rain began as we headed to the game and after the game it was pouring as we drove home. Sunday has been a mix. The weather people are talking about the possibility of us getting up to 70 degrees this next week. We hope so!!

Linking up for Mosaic Monday with Maggie at Normandy Life.

Tea at Lovella’s

To get to this lovely setting and presentation it takes lots of planning ahead and sometimes it takes many hands.

All the Mennonite Girls from British Columbia and me, the U.S.A. cousin, hadn’t been together since December. It was high tea time for us to get together again and Lovella graciously offered her home knowing that it is easier for me to get there from the U.S.A.

Can you take enough photos to document all the planning, baking and creating of these beautiful delicacies?

Anneliese baked, mixed and put together this tiered platter of gluten free tea bites for Julie and all of us. They were so tasty and she’ll share the recipe sometime in the future on our blog.

There were eight of us around the table on this day and we sorely missed our two Mennonite Girls from Manitoba. Lovella made these beautiful cookies for each of us and they served as place cards letting us know where to sit.

Some close ups of what we enjoyed.

Kathy made this fruit salad with a nice dressing that she will share soon.

And here is a little glimpse in how it all came together just before we sat down at Lovella’s table.

Lovella worked ahead of time to make the tea come together making pastry puff cones to stuff with an egg salad mixture and other tea treats.

Judy put together a lovely Earl Grey punch that she’ll be sharing soon on the blog.

Bev made some wonderful tarts with basil and other yummy ingredients, bottom right. Lovella also made mini croissants from scratch, rhubarb scones, and plain scones. Lovella provided lemon curd, blackberry preserves and creme fraiche to go with the scones.

When we ate enough of the savory treats Lovella brought out these delicacies that she had also prepared ahead of time for us. Melt in your mouth pavlova goodness!

We had a great time of catching up and taking care of some business for some upcoming events.

I’m very thankful for my Mennonite Girl friends and all I’ve learned and enjoyed since God plopped me into this community. Thank you Lovella for such a lovely time that you thought out and brought together for all of us. Thanks to all the other girls for their contributions to our wonderful time of feasting and of fellowship. It was a sacred time.

 

Rain, Rain, Go Away Hodgepodge

1. April showers bring May flowers or so the saying goes. Has your April been filled with showers? Do you carry an umbrella, wear a slicker, or make a run for it? Besides rain, what else has filled your April?
We are breaking rainfall records here in the Pacific Northwest. Oye. No, I do not bother with an umbrella. I do have a good waterproof jacket. Mostly, I run for it!
Our 5 week old granddaughter has filled our April with lots of love, cuddles and smiles. This is one of the latest photos we’ve gotten via text. Oh how I love this little gift from above.
2. What’s something you could give a 30-minute presentation on at a moment’s notice and with zero preparation?
How to wing it making a meal with whatever you find in your fridge and cupboards.

3. Share with us a favorite food memory from childhood.

Pishky! Russian Fry Bread. 

4. What’s a song you thought you knew the lyrics to, but later discovered you were wrong?

When I learned lyrics to a song I listened to them over and over and over again to get them right. In junior high we would listen to Leslie Gore songs on a record player pulling up the arm of the record player and setting down the needle carefully again and again until we knew the words by heart. I was in choirs and Christian singing groups and enjoyed music enough to get the words right. When our minds went blank and we forgot words in the middle of a concert we kept our mouths moving and never missed a beat.

The thing I get wrong very often are well known sayings…

5. According to one travel website, the most overrated tourist attractions in America are-
Niagara Falls (NY), Hollywood Walk of Fame (California), Times Square (NYC), Epcot (FL), Seattle Space Needle (WA), and Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market (Boston). How many of these have you seen in person? Did you feel like a tourist? Did you care? Tell us about a place (not on the list) you’ve visited that might be considered a tourist trap, but you love it anyway.

I’ve been to Niagara Falls (both sides), Times Square, Hollywood Walk of Fame, and the Seattle Space Needle. Pike Place Market in Seattle is a tourist trap that I enjoy taking people to.

6. Your signature clothing item?

Blue jeans in public. My pink chenille robe in the privacy of my home! Sometimes you might see me in the yard early in the morning with my robe on. My Dear cringes when I head outside in my robe.

7. What’s an experience you’ve had you think everyone should experience at least once? Why?

Being the one in need of help. This is when you learn that it’s better to give than to receive. It’s hard to be the one who needs help. It’s a lot easier to be able to give…

8. Insert your own random thought here.

A little sunshine in a song from my teen years…

I’ve got sunshine on a cloudy day
When it’s cold outside I’ve got the month of May
I guess you’d say
What can make me feel this way?
My girl (my girl, my girl)
Talkin’ ’bout my girl (my girl)

Linking up with Joyce From This Side of the Pond for Hodgepodge Wednesday.

I drove to Canada and back on Tuesday and spent some time with my Mennonite Girls and will be sharing about our time soon. I am happy to report I had very little rain on my windshield going and coming back home, woohoo! Hope to get around and meet some new Hodgepodge friends.