Breathing room.

It was a glorious Memorial Day weekend here.  The weather was just simply beautiful and honeysuckle scented.  We had no where to be for three whole days – a first since a snowstorm I’m pretty sure. Pat went fishing with Cola, we had lots of girl time in the yard, gardening was done, back roads were driven in pursuit of local berries, which got jammed and frozen while the strawberries we picked from our yard garden got turned into strawberry ice cream that was shared at an impromptu dinner last night with Charles and Carol, our second dinner party with neighbors over the weekend.   There was a yard sale score in the shape of a pretty new covered cake stand – the sort that you can flip upside down and turn into a punch or trifle bowl in a pinch,  which I guess gets entered into both collections, bringing me to four punchbowls and eight cake stands. To celebrate, I baked a pound cake – this is my go-to recipe, one I tore out of Southern Living eons ago.  Just dump everything in your stand mixer and let it go. I love those sorts of recipes.  Baking the pound cake was also to use up some of the four dozen duck eggs that were dropped off this weekend, some of which might be involved in a pickling project. The pound cake was pretty divine served with the homemade, homegrown strawberry ice cream.   Ambitious to-do lists were made and accomplished this weekend, although the house didn’t really get cleaned like it needs.  Now that I’ve wrapped up my last PB&J Fund classes for the semester, I’ll have free afternoons again so maybe I can get that caught up. I did get laundry (mostly) caught up this weekend.  One shouldn’t be too ambitious about these things I don’t think.  All in all, it was a lazily productive weekend, the sort that had lots of impromptu pop-ins and visits, poison ivy, lazy yard drinks, beautiful evenings and the first lightening bug sightings of the season.  Hello summer.

 

A blooming success!

My dream garden is part cottage, part little -old-lady with lots of roses, peonies and lilacs.  Unfortunately, our yard, which has enough space to plant loads of these items, is far too shady to actually be hospitable to them.  This doesn’t stop me from trying to grow those things though, in our limited full sun spots. Continue reading

Spring Insanity

It has been an absolute whirlwind here lately.  I mean, really.  Yesterday was our first unscheduled day in at least two weeks, which is slightly misleading because by ‘unscheduled’ I mean, we’ve got loads of things to do, we just didn’t have any solid commitments before we hopped back on that busy bus  for the next few weeks.

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Upcoming

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Back yard view, with dogwoods and Brian’s redbud in the distance.

May, always our busiest month, is next week you guys!  Which means we are fast approaching the days where Pat and I traditionally communicate by post-it note, only recently enhanced by technology and the ability to text each other.  But that is entirely dependent on my carrying a device in which to text and since I rarely do that, the post-it note is still generally the most reliable form of communication here. Thankfully, Edie is old enough we can leave her home alone, because we’ve already had one incident where both of us committed to something without looking to see if the other one was around.  Edie has started realizing when I ask her if she has her key, it means she stands a good chance of being locked out when she comes home if she doesn’t have it.  Ah, spring in the Calvert house. Continue reading

Blooming this week: April 16

We are at the point in spring where the landscape one sees at dawn is different than the one sees at nightfall.  Case in point – last Saturday afternoon, Pat & I plopped down in the front yard waiting for Edie to get ready for her soccer game.  We noticed the tulips had sent up buds and wondered when they might open.  After soccer, we plopped down in the exact same spot and noticed the tulips had opened up.  Just like that, while we weren’t looking that afternoon. Continue reading

Springing.

Every year we worry the tulip magnolia tree in the front yard is going to get pinched by frost.  It’s a glorious tree to behold – the magnificent pink blooms can be seen as one approaches our house in every direction for at least a block.  It is the first tree to bloom every year and many neighbors have told us they consider it the first official sign of spring.  Every few years though, Mother Nature gets the last word on the beauty of the tree, for unlike other early blooming trees, the tulip magnolia does not react well to frost.  In fact, frost makes the large pink and white flowers turn brown, definitely not as glorious. Continue reading