June 30, 2011

yesterday, today and tomorrow

A raging thunder storm drove me into the house today, so instead of doing laundry, I decided to blog. But then I fell asleep while my photos were uploading so I'm going to bet I don't get this post done until tomorrow when it will no longer be Thunder Storm Day.

It bothers me to say "today" in a post when it's really tomorrow by the time I get around to publishing. At the moment it's still today, but by the time you read this it will be tomorrow, and the Thunder Storm Day will be yesterday.


It's been just like the movie Groundhog Day around here for the last couple weeks.

With a few exceptions, every day is the same.

I truly don't know how to make endless days of gardening sound even a little bit interesting, so I won't even try.

Dirt, flowers, water, fertilizer, sunscreen, filthy overalls.

Living the gardening dream.

I'm getting close though...hopefully I'll be all done by the end of the week.

It hasn't been all gardening fun and games though. I managed to sneak in a couple more photo shoots for the clothing boutique in town.

This first shoot was on a gorgeous, gorgeous evening, and we were just killing time on the dock waiting for the sun to mellow out a bit.

The lighting was harsh, but I still love how they turned out. (The above photos are processed with Florabella's Retro Lollipop action.)

For the store, we needed to pick photos that really show off the clothes and accessories, so the following three shots are the ones that made it into the boutique.

Katy was the easiest model ever.

Every single shot was a keeper.

It was hard to choose, but I love the combination we ended up with.

This was so much fun....I could do it all day.

All day, every day.

But then, who would do my gardening?

And put off going to the post office to return my six extra dresses?

Most importantly, who would not cook dinner for my family?

Happy Day After Thunderstorm Day!

June 14, 2011

time is ticking away

We have now officially gone from having months until the wedding, to having weeks.

Just over six weeks, to be exact.

It's not quite time to panic, but it is time to start getting organized, start making lists, and start making a plan.

It's also time to revert back to the bullet point blog post format.

~ I ordered seven different dresses for the wedding, and thank goodness, one of them is going to work.

Big, huge check off my list.

However, Part B of this bit of good news gets a bit tricky. I now have to return the six dresses that didn't pass the test. I hate, hate, hate returning things by mail, mainly because it's somewhat complicated what with the paperwork, plastic bag re-packaging, did I save the box it came in, printing the return label, and am I out of packing tape again?! And then, of course, there's the whole Post Office experience.

Not a big fan of the Post Office experience.

This is why the items I need to return by mail usually end up sitting on the floor of my closet way past the ninety day return period, when I finally ship them back and just keep my fingers crossed that the company will accept them.

Procrastination....it's a beautiful thing.

~ The greenhouse is about halfway cleaned out. Some things are actually planted, but most are sitting in flats in about six different locations around my house.

They are just sitting there.

Mocking me.

~ The greenhouse is green. As in, the walls and windows are covered in green slime/algae/funk. I am soooo looking forward to getting my scrub brush and bucket of bleach and making it all pretty and white again.


~ Dinner is currently sneaking up on me almost every single day. Seriously, it doesn't even cross my mind on most days until about four thirty. Or when my hubby or son walk in the door after a hard day of work and ask me what's for dinner.


I've got the blank look down pat.

~ I need to do one of those meal plans where you spend a whole day cooking and then have meals for a month in the freezer. So far, I've bought the Costco size package of ground beef, but then I hit a dead end.

Apparently, I'm struggling with the "plan" part of meal plan.

~ My zinnias have aphids.

Do you know how long it takes to de-aphid 1110 zinnias?

~ Our weatherman is a big, fat liar. Today is supposed to be sunny and seventy. In actuality, today is windy, gray and rainy.

Dear Al Gore,
I want global warming back.
Sincerely yours,

~ I am absolutely, positively making a batch of this delightful nectar ASAP.

~ Then I'm making this.

~ Then, I'm ordering a bigger dress for the wedding.

June 7, 2011




Such professional sounding, back pages of the magazine terms.

A few of you have asked where I found the vintage sodas and striped straws that were used in the photos for this post.

I found the sodas at Cracker Barrel.

But, at the moment, I'm mad at Cracker Barrel.

I could tell you the whole, long story of why I'm mad at Cracker Barrel, but I'm pretty sure I'd just end up sounding a bit petty, a little bitter, and somewhat vindictive and since this is the internet and things you write here last forever, I'm going to make a sincere effort to avoid petty, bitter and vindictive.

I will tell you that if you go to Cracker Barrel to buy vintage sodas, you might want to avoid the All American Vintage Soda variety pack. The sodas inside that particular (boxed and sealed) variety pack have very cheap, peely paper labels and the bottle caps say "vintage soda" instead of the name of the actual soda. However, right next to the All American Vintage Soda variety pack, they have The. Exact. Same. Sodas. in handled, open, (you can see the bottles), cardboard four packs, and those particular sodas have non-paper, non-peely decal labels, (and can therefore be placed in a tub of ice), and their bottle caps actually say "Bubble Up", or "Cheerwine", etc.

I will also tell you that if you were to naively decide to go back to Cracker Barrel and foolishly try to exchange the still securely capped and boxed, peely labeled, lame-o capped, All American Vintage Soda variety pack for the very slightly higher priced, decal labeled, non-lame-o capped, four pack bottles so that you would be able to sink your vintage sodas in a tub of ice, you would be disappointed in the results of your efforts.

Aren't you all glad I'm avoiding petty and bitter?

Cracker Barrel said that they weren't able to exchange my still securely capped, still boxed, (packing tape off though, so that they could see that the bottles are still securely capped...that I didn't replace the soda with colored water), peely labeled, lame-o capped, vintage sodas because they're a food item, and they can't take returns on food items.

The FDA won't let them.

Now, perhaps the FDA wouldn't let them re-sell them, but I'm pretty sure the FDA doesn't dictate Cracker Barrel's return policy. Especially their return policy in regards to having a display that might possibly, in some circumstances, lead a somewhat naive customer to believe that the sodas contained in the All American Vintage Soda variety pack would be the same as the exact same sodas in the open four packs sitting right next to the sealed variety pack box.

Whew. I'm so glad I decided to take the high road on this one.


The most painful part was going ahead and buying the decal labeled sodas, (which I wanted even more now), whilst still in my snit. And then hauling the big, heavy, non-returnable twelve packs back to my car. They offered to help, but I declined because I'm very mature like that.

Moving on.

Stewarts also has a great variety of old fashioned sodas and I've found them at my local grocery store.

Also, Wal-Mart has cute bottles of orange, grape and strawberry Crush.

Now for the straws.

Etsy has zillions of them, and I bought mine from HeyYoYo. They have every color imaginable. The shipping was instant. I think they were here in three days. Very, very fun.

There you have it! Your very own, back of the magazine source-athon. With the added bonus of a rant.

You won't get that in Country Living!

And now I'm off to pick at the edges of my paper soda bottle labels.

Have a wonderful Tuesday!

June 4, 2011

blue skies

"Blue skies,
Smiling at me,
Nothing but blue skies,
Do I see."

We are going to have a glorious weekend.


Sunshine and warm temps. 76 today and 82 (gasp) tomorrow.

One thing I can promise - you will never, ever hear me complain about the heat.


I'm getting ready to put on my dirty overalls and go play in the dirt.

Have a wonderful weekend!

June 2, 2011

blossom time

The crabapples are in full bloom here in our little Montana valley, and boy are they gorgeous. As in, I almost drove off the road several times yesterday when one would catch my eye. That kind of gorgeous. All shades of pink and gorgeous whites.

Last spring, we planted two weeping crabapples in front of the greenhouse, and this year they are putting on an amazing show.

Time to break out my Florabella actions and textures and have some fun.

A little texture......

I'm still not sold on my texturing skills, but they are so fun to play with.

I love the pink blossom/whitish blush bloom combination.

A little pink sky....

Who doesn't love a pink sky?

My youngest brought home his art portfolio yesterday and we had a discussion about how to add the surreal factor to your artwork.

This is my contribution to the world of surreal art. A pink sky.

Speaking of pink.....

Water droplets anyone?

I love them all, but I think the first shot is my very favorite.

Here it is again, so you don't have to scroll all the way to the top. I always try to help a sister out any way I can.

Do crabapples do well where you live? Or are dogwoods your spring showstopper? Perhaps the beautiful redbud?

Name your favorite spring tree!

(Disclaimer....I realize for some of you that spring is long gone, and you are currently blazing your way through summer, but for today, pretend you're a northern girl and your blossoms are still doing their springy thing!)