Monday, November 5, 2018

Leaves

November begins the holiday season. The Christmas decorations begin to appear, it seems, far too soon. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in a holiday season that has become Open Season for shoppers that we forget to just enjoy the day, the moment.

Birthdays, for example, sometimes get lost in the specter of a holiday that happens on or just before the holiday. Take for example my birthday just five days before Christmas or my youngest daughter's birthday the day before Christmas or her daughter's birthday the day before Halloween. Today I honor my eldest granddaughter on her 12th birthday as we celebrated her birthday Saturday night. You have seen the posts on her blooming into a--a--tween, though her mind she is at least 18 all ready. She loves horses and rabbits and horses. Her sister added the large photo of her when I am guessing that she was 6, maybe, on our pony Pop. And now she has dreams of being a barrel racer, thus the the horse running for the barrels on her cake.

CBS Sunday Morning TV show did a story on a photographer who spends the falls photography the gorgeous fall colors of New England, one of my destination day dreams. I then took my camera out to take photos of our fall colors.

Mine are not nearly as spectacular as the New England landscape. As I wrote a few weeks ago, an early fall snow ruined our fall colors.



One leave clings to the hawthorn berries. We planted the tree hoping to attract cedar waxwings. No luck yet.


Clinging leaves to the peach tree.


The neighbor's cottonwood leaves find their way to the koi pond.


Really. We do have two koi and 75+ goldfish that swim amongst the ash tree leaves.


My sleeping cherub napping in the dried leaves. Do you see the lady bug?


The coral bell hangs on. . .


. . . as does her sister.


Our Brody Boy is growing. He is the first pet that I have been to get a good head shot of. He was fascinated by the camera's light to prevent red-eye. He's 7 months old now. 

A big thank you to those who have hosted Mosaic Monday and now a thank you to Angie who has taken over the reins. I will invite you to join us at Ten Toes in the Water for Mosaic Monday, but then I think most of you have beaten me over there. I had intended to have my post done early this morning, but that didn't happen then this afternoon  Little Lily spent the afternoon. 

Monday, October 29, 2018

Fun, Games, and Toys


Saturday was show day. The granddaughters entered a small horses show, hoping to do some fancy timed competitions, but it turned out to a a fun day without the tough competition that their mother feared. Instead it was a day of games that helped the girls improve their riding skills. 

First, the girls had to get their horses and themselves ready for the first event, the Hallow e'en contest. Ellie chose a patriotic theme of red, white, and blue and got Hank all gussied up.




Lucy prepares Mairah for her home made concoction of flour and salt and paint to paint the mustang like an Indian pony--with fair results.



Mom made the Indian maiden costume. Pretty cute.


Hank sort of tolerated his mane in braids.


Lucy entered the next game, riding with an egg on a spoon. She lost the egg when they were asked to to turn at a trot.


In this game, the riders must hold on to the ribbon. Easy enough. Yeah right. 


Team work that won't last long.


This was good one: apple under the chin. Try getting a horse to comply when you have to concentrate keeping an apple under your chin.

The games were all fun and really good exercises for the girls and their horses as they were asked to do things that they don't normally do.  They had to concentrate on something other than the horse. It was a good day.

Sunday was a totally different experience: The Rocky Mountain Hobby Expo. If you like trains, plane, cars, and other toys, this was the place to be. My favorite dollhouse builder and supplier was there, so I made the solo trip to Denver and met the other daughter and her son there.



Legos! They are amazing. This is a Christmas village  with two working trains.


A weak smile from Nathan. He was tired, he said. Not his usually perky self.


There were several train displays, but this one was the most amazing. I took hurried photos, but it is a diorama of the Colorado front range. The detail was amazing. This is sight that one might see traveling through Eastern Colorado through the wheat farms with the tall grain silos with rail cars waiting to be loaded.


Love this sign. Cow tipping is the country is a thing--I think. 


A farm along the railroad. A mom hangs clothes on the clothes line. Familiar?




Travel through the front range and you pass trailer parks much like this one.


Just around the bend, the mountains appear. Looks like fall is on the way. We were trying to figure out which tunnel this one was. I should have asked.



And here comes the train, Union Pacific's California Zephyr. I rode the Zephyr as a small child. Momma took us back to Iowa to her home on the train. I always wanted to ride in the Vista Dome.


Around another bend and we are nearly back to the beginning. The detail of the display was wonderful and realistic. No. I don't want to start train display, but I think Heather does. She has a train set and would love set it up.  

Finally back home we confront reality of keeping livestock. On a happier day, our rooster Chanticleer lorded over his hens. Sadly, we lost the rooster last week. Old age. He began crowing long before dawn, around 4:30 and continued all day long letting his hens and us know who was boss. I always wondered what the neighbors thought of our early riser announcing the beginning of the day. Now I wonder if they miss him, too. Fortunately we never had any of the neighbors complain about his early morning noise. Most municipalities have regulations against roosters, but while we do live in the city limits we are zoned agricultural, so we can have a rooster. And now we don't. He was a pretty boy. 


I'm going Maggie at Life in Normandy for her last Mosaic Monday. It's been fun, Maggie. You have given me structure and discipline to make the deadline. Sometimes it was a really tight squeeze, like today as I hurry before the the link closes. Thank you for hosting. 

And thank you all for stopping by. If you have moment check out the dollhouse blog: Ann's Dollhouse Dreams. 

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Oxymoron


Autumn really threw her weight around as she came in first with hot flashes with unseasonably warm first days of Fall. One day the temperatures neared 90 degrees and the next we were warned about an early winter storm and storm it did. We had about 6 inches of snow, which didn't last because once the sun came out, the snow went away.




The damage was done. No saving plants; the cannas had been so beautiful this summer in their patio pots. 


Beyond the patio, the three ash trees that were just beginning to show their fall colors, dumped their leaves in pile on the new snow. Our fall colors  here in Northern Colorado were ruined as the storm stripped the trees of their leaves. 



While Autumn can be fickle, she does have a kinder side. Yesterday the grandsons were visiting and that called for the season's last patio lunch: hot dogs served on paper plates. I had to dig for paper plates, but I came up a few left-over holiday items for lunch.


Nathan reminded me that I should have had plates appropriate for the season, like maybe Halloween plates, perhaps, he suggested politely.

I didn't take to time to explain that the lack of planning on my part drove me to use whatever I had on hand. He enjoyed his hot dog anyway.

 H


He also helped out. His eyes lit up when he saw the leave blower that I was going to use to blow away a million locust leaves. I gave him my ear plugs and the leave blower and told him to get busy. A side note: this photo is a bit of an oxymoron don't you think with the leaf blower and the snow shovel? That's the way it is here at the Garden Spot.




 A rare moment, Brody standing still. Brody is growing and gaining a few manners. He is learning quickly about life in the house, but thinks he belongs on the furniture and the bed. He sees us on the furniture, so of course, he can use the furniture, too. We may lose the battle. 


Not only were the boys here, but the granddaughters arrived, too. It was a special day for Lily and Pop. Saturday after Saturday Lily has to go with her sisters and just watch as they take their riding lesson. Well this Saturday, the riding instructor came to our house and gave Lily a lesson on Pop. Both were amazing. Mrs. J. couldn't get over how old Pop was (32) and how well he responded to Lily. I was amazed at how well Lily could make the old boy take her cues and do what he was supposed to do. 


 Late in the day just before the sun glides behind the Rocky Mountains I love to go out and take photos of the same things that I always photograph. The golden glow makes the palomino boy even more golden. The apple tree still has it leaves, and like all of the other trees that didn't get to turn color, dead leaves still cling to the branches. Even the boring wood fence takes on new character as the sun sheds its last rays on the Garden Spot.

Life is quiet here at the Garden Spot. The garden is done. The flowers have faded. There is, however, always something do here.

Thanks for stopping by. I'll be linking to Mosaic Monday. Join the fun there. 



Monday, October 8, 2018

Fondue Friday

Most days here at the Garden Spot are pretty quiet, but some days get wild, like last Friday. Sundance has a lot of problems, now. Lameness in his front, soreness in his rear, and last week Jennifer noticed a snotty, smelly nose, so she called the vet to come give him a good going over.

 This is my favorite photo of the week as she leads him to other side of the barn, out of a different gate than what she usually uses and led him across the the lawn, but what I like about the photo is Brody trotting along side the dog like he knows exactly what he is doing. Not so long ago he was scared of the giant animals that he had never seen before. Now he has made friends with the big boy and they are quiet comfortable with each other.



Today's mosaic tells the story






Doctor Wendy began by giving Sundance his chiropractic treatment to help his soreness. I stayed out of the way and took other photos.



A spider has been very busy on the patio building webs around the fuchsia. Early morning sunlight made it the perfect subject for a a lot of photos. Here are the best.






The spider was working on another web, but he wasn't awake yet as he is all curled up in a ball. 


The buds almost look like berries. These won't get to bloom. 


How does a photographer capture a sunbeam? Quite by accident. Almost you can see the iridescence in the delicate web.



The fuchsia will be gone in the next couple of days. Today it is cold and maybe it will rain by day's end, but certainly we will have a freeze and all the plants will be gone.

The next morning I went out take more photos, but the webs and spider were gone. Vanished in the night. I was disappointed because I wanted photos of the second web. 

BUT. Jennifer did return at the end of the day to treat Sundance. He was sedated earlier in the day so that Wendy could examine him, thinking that he had bad tooth. Instead, he has a sinus infection and is now a ten day antibiotic regiment. So Jennifer returned later in the the day to give him his first dose--not just a simple pill, but a powder that has to be reconstituted with water along with molasses added to sweeten it. The Head Gardener is now administering the meds twice a day. 

Of course the girls were with her, so I was happy to host Fondue Friday for after school snacks. She has been working on providing sugarless snacks to help change of behaviors, so the fondue is a chocolate that is largely cacao which is low in sugar and wonderful fresh fruits.  







I am close to Mosaic Monday deadline, so I'll close here, leaving with a beautiful flower garden at the University of Northern Colorado. I am thinking that I could plant such a garden here, simple stuff: Saliva lots and lots of colorful zinnias, and come cock's comb. It's located at the cross walk of busy city street for all of the passer-by to enjoy. I wonder if they do? 


I do have one more thing: I am having trouble logging onto Blogger on my desk computer. I can access it on my lap top and my iPad, but not on the big computer. I have no idea why. Any suggestions?

Have a fabulous week. Thanks so much for visiting. Pop over to Maggie's for Mosaic Monday. See you there.