October 17, 2006

flora and fauna

I did manage to get a few things from my list completed over the weekend... got a haircut (I got over 5 inches cut off, and it's still past my shoulders!), bought some plants, etc. It was a beautiful weekend- temps in the low to mid 80s, clear blue skies, and breezy... great for being outside, planting my flowers! I bought two hanging baskets (one of them a beautiful shocking pink geranium) that are hanging next to the patio on a shepherd's hook I bought a few years ago in Wisconsin at an Amish auction, and some snapdragons for two pots that sit on the patio. I also couldn't resist buying a perennial shrub for the yard... don't know where we'll put it yet, so for now it's in a large pot right next to the patio. This is a picture- it can grow to be about 4 feet high (1 meter), and its common name is Fairy Duster... can't you just picture a fairy plucking one of the little poufs to dust off her toadstool table with?? This is a neat-looking plant, and it does happen to be one of Tom's favorite desert plants. Ours is only about a foot tall right now, but it does have lots of buds on- apparently hummingbirds like them, too! I just hope I can keep it alive till we decide where to plant it!
I thought I'd add a few pics of our hummingbird visitors- not the best lighting in the pics, since it's pretty bright outside... our patio faces west, so the pics are taken into the sun. Sometimes, after drinking at the feeder, they sit on the string from the sun-shade... a pretty "precarious perch" in my opinion, but there's nothing to them (they only weigh a few ounces, I think) so sitting on a dangling string doesn't bother them, I guess.

The next two pictures are another favorite perch for the hummingbirds. Tom took these pics through the bedroom window over the weekend. (we haven't gotten the camera battery issue straightened out yet, but it still has a little juice left in it.) Jackie gave me these beautiful stained glass and copper wind chimes a couple years ago for Christmas, and they hang right next to the hummingbird feeder. As you can see, they make a good perch!!! Too funny!!!

This pic shows the feeder and the windchimes... it also gives you an idea of just how tightly packed the houses are, and how small the backyards are, since you can look across the wall at the houses down the row... the two-story houses are the next street over. Those houses are HUGE for the lot size, in my opinion, but there's a lot of people moving here. Apparently, Maricopa was even featured on a CBS Sunday Morning (nationally televised TV show) segment last weekend that talked about the US population growth, and the population hitting 300 million sometime this week, according to the Census Bureau's calculations.

Thanks to everyone who posted comments, either here or on 2peas, about my Falling Leaves ATCs. They were enjoyable to make (okay, they were a bit tedious because of all the details, but it was still really satisfying to make them, and I think they turned out nice!), and the swap itself was a lot of fun. I've only been to one other "in-person" ATC swap, and that was kind of not what I expected- the participants just sort of put their cards on the table, and you picked up one of each, and that was it. This one was much better... we sat at a couple tables in the store's classroom, and everyone was really friendly. One person sort of "runs" things- we introduced ourselves, took turns discussing anything noteworthy about our card, then passed them around. A couple of the participants were even there via "long-distance" LOL! They live in AZ during the winter, but haven't come down yet, so they send their cards to someone who brings them to the swap. There are two other stores in the east valley that also do ATC swaps, but for those, you drop your cards off at the store, then pick up the trades later after a designated person sorts them all out. I may do a couple of these, because they have some interesting themes coming up, but I'm not sure if I'd do that very often; the in-person thing was a lot more fun to me!

Hopefully I can get some more crafting in later this week; Tom is gone (again) till Friday on a last-minute trip to San Jose, California. It stinks that he had to go so soon, when he was just back from being gone for almost two weeks, but it does mean I can spread my supplies all over the table! (gotta try to find the silver lining somewhere in all his traveling.)

2 comments:

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