Thursday, February 28, 2013

To End The Month

And if a river runs through it, there must be some good fishin'.

I believe it is Mary Poppins beside her little garden shed complete with chandelier. I discovered that the fancy light fixtures have moved out of doors into the gardens.

In the midst of the movie themes was a 'going to the movies' theme. How clever.

This was a desert garden as a tribute to the 'Western' genre of film making.

For those who need a really good sound system in the garden and whose nearest neighbours are about 50 miles away, this setup will make your hair face straight forward. Comes with a big bin of high quality ear plugs.

And the obligatory Japanese Garden with a very attractive cedar sauna.

This was one of the nicest turtle garden ornaments I have ever seen.

Mushrooms and toadstools that came in large bunches with different colour themes. Very nicely made.

I have no idea what switch plate covers have to do with gardens, but there they were. This was truly beautiful metal art.

We were ready for a little sit down break and came across this choir. They were called "The Total Gospel Experience Choir" and they were about as good as it gets. They had soul and rhythm, and everyone of them had an amazing quality to their voice. For a change, the voices totally over powered the instruments.

The show was in its last day so we can forgive the wilted flowers in the back of the little red pick-up truck. It was a work of art and priced accordingly.

Having seen about all there was to see, we exited the convention center in the late afternoon. This is a street scene where we headed back to the Cheese Cake Factory, this time for a piece of ..... what else, Cheesecake. All in all, a very good day with very good friends.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

More Gardening Ideas

My expert advice on garden landscape continues. Having just recently attended the Northwest Flower and Garden Show in Seattle, I have been privy to the latest in outdoor decor and I pass along, free of charge, my recommendations and advice. Because I charge nothing for this service, that is about what it is worth.
Above we see that unless you are a childless person, but are wealthy in garden space, you must have a child's play area in your garden. The only sand in this area that looks like a large sandbox, is in the boat. There is also a large rock on which a child can easily fall, causing a life changing concussion.

Conversation pits are all the rage. In this one, we can see that those in the background will be the  most comfortable and will enjoy carrying on a conversation about the poor folks that get to sit on the hard chairs in the foreground. This setting was accompanied by a really cool stainless steel hot tub which I may reveal in a future photo.

The movie theme was ever present and here we have The Tin Man from the Wizard of Oz. I like the sunglasses. I thought of my grandson who has that part, exactly, in the up-coming Abbotsford Children's Theater production of the Wizard of Oz.

Remember yesterday's ratty garden bicycle? If you cannot find one of those, make your own out of left-over re-bar, bent in the shape of a bicycle. It is the shape that is all important. Nobody intends these bikes to be modes of transportation anyways. All the better if it shows signs of extreme rust.

There was a floral design competition as well as garden displays. This was the only one that really caught my eye. It reminded me of a big green bowl of ripe and red cherries and I love cherries.

This gal and her Vespa were part of a "Roman Holiday" themed garden setting. Look closely at her. It is a botox treatment gone bad.

I have always loved to photograph doors that catch the eye. In this Mediterranean type setting, the doors and windows were the big draw. Next time you are driving through a nice neighbourhood, notice how an interesting and unique door will make the look of the house. How about a door in your garden. Just a door. Leading nowhere. Just don't lock it and lose the key.

Apart from the most uncomfortable chairs ever, this setting has a nice appeal. The fan palms, the lattice floor, the wicker, the stripped cushions all make this quite attractive. It might even make the wine taste better.

Ah! My favourite garden, the Hobbit garden. This is not practical as a home garden theme, but it sure is photogenic and the kids would love to explore on the other side of that door. What is in there? Dwarfs, hobbits, Gandalf, or just a rusty old lawn mower?

Oh deer! Where I live, these are the worst garden pests ever. For those who have a problem with these animals raiding their garden, this is like displaying a large slug or a cloud of aphids in a garden setting. This particular deer was fresh from the taxidermist.

And another outdoor conversation pit, complete with fireplace. Most of these types of displays were so attractive that they could have been either inside or outside the home. Installing a fireplace adds several months of the year that make such a thing usable.  

And what Pacific Northwest outdoor display is complete without a bear? This garden was called, and named after the movie, "A River Runs Through It". It was rustic and very bush authentic, so much so that the kids would want to stay indoors for fear of the wildlife.
One more batch tomorrow.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Reason Why

Here we are atop the Seattle Convention Center, on the fourth floor, attending the annual Northwest Flower and Garden Show. I took many photos to provide a free service. I want to show you what you can do with your garden and you don't even have to go to Seattle.
You are welcome.  

Find some old shoes, paint them red and then antique them with some dark shoe polish, apply a bit of lace and stick on some old dried flower blossoms and there you have it, the latest in garden fashion.

Or you could purchase a half-naked stone baby and prop it in among your blossoms.

And here is a replica of Dorothy's house in Kansas after the tornado. And, of course, the yellow brick road on the way to the land of Oz. Did I mention there was a movie theme to the gardens this year?

Old bicycles in the garden are a delight. Spray paint them monochromatic and plant some flowers in the carriers. The older and rattier the bike, the better.

Everyone needs a yellow chair in the garden, but because we all know they are uncomfortable, you need some blue pillows as yellow/blue combos are prime garden decor.

You could tear out the wall of your young daughter's bedroom so it is totally visible from the garden. She will love her loss of privacy.

Finding the right sized pot can take you to distant countries.

If it is a beach front property you own, this mini beach house is perfect. Don't expect to take it in the trunk of your car.

You need an outdoor sitting area in which to drink wine. Black wicker and wine are the latest combo in gardening society.

Wrought iron is still popular, but B.Y.O.C. (bring your own cushion)

If you can get your Fan Palms to grow this tall, a nice hammock might be in order. Fan Palms in our climate? Who are they kidding? If we could grow these here, we would not need to go to Palm Desert for our winter vacations anymore.
Stay tuned for two more days of expert gardening advice from someone who has been to the biggest and best garden show in the Pacific Northwest.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Day Trip

The usual things to do on Sunday, Feb. 24th would be to go to church in the morning, watch the Canucks hockey game in the afternoon, and then take in the Oscar Awards in the evening. But not so for the group of twelve who for this occasion became the group of eight. We carpooled in two vehicles and headed to Seattle for the day.
First stop is the Cheesecake Factory for brunch.

Here you can see the group of eight minus the photographer (that would be me) being waited on by, count em', 6 eager waiters and waitresses.

Vel, the newest member of our gang, is photographing the photographer. Good to see that some one else is not troubled with hauling a big DSLR around for the day so they can get some quality photos.

After the long drive and not having had any breakfast, I was ready for some good coffee and ........

Bruleed French Toast with Crispy Bacon. It was soooo good!
On my next post, I will reveal the real reason we spent the afternoon in Seattle.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

We Have Much To Fear

This is hard to believe , or is it? Look here to see the video and news report.

     A few weeks ago in the Land of the Free, a five year old girl in Pennsylvania was labeled a terrorist threat.
     Fortunately for the citizens of Northumberland County, local authorities managed to detain this nefarious kindergartner before she could exact her villainous deeds on thousands of innocents.
     Authorities were tipped off after someone  overheard a conversation between the girl and one of her classmates in which she mentioned plans to shoot people ... with a bubble gun!
     Administrators at her local elementary school questioned the girl alone without her parents for 30 minutes. She was then labeled a 'terrorist threat' and sentenced to a ten-day suspension.
     Now it is quite fortunate for the child that she was granted a reprieve, albeit a small one, from the state sponsored brainwashing. Public schools stamp out children's creativity and independence, replacing it with obedience training and state propaganda.
    It is truly incredible, though, that the police state security culture has gotten so out of control, and that as a collective, American society has really become so frightened.
     The government has pulled an amazing mind job. In just over a decade, the home of the brave is now terrified of five year old girls with bubble guns.


Saturday, February 23, 2013

Double the Heat

Friday morning I got a call from a very thoughtful person, my daughter, offering me a couple of free tickets to the Abbotsford Heat game. (Our AHL or American Hockey League team) I thought it would be a great way to spend the evening and would not normally blog about it, but a couple of coincidences happened soon after.
We were working at the town house complex almost next door to the arena and after asking nicely, our client consented to letting us park at his place, in his gated community, for free.
Then as I was picking up a few supplies over the noon hour, I was offered two more free tickets to the Heat game, but this time for Saturday night, not Friday. I declined as I am not that big fan to want to do this two nights in a row.
So we had a nice evening, me, my son, my son-in-law, and one of my grandsons. I try to get in a game or two each year, but this time I had to forgo the Canuck's game on TV. The nice thing about watching hockey on TV is that I get to control the volume which can be a dangerous assault on the ears in the arena, and I don't have to put up with the odour of beer and the gang of partying teenagers behind me who are totally oblivious to the fact that there is a hockey game going on in front of them.
Oh, and by the way. Our team lost 5-1. And the game I missed? My Canucks won 1-0!  Yes, a good night.

Thursday, February 21, 2013


We are again having an abortion debate in our community as a farmer has allowed his highly visible property to be used as a mass symbolic graveyard to represent the thousands of abortions committed every week in our nation. Each small cross represents a life lost on the altar of convenience. If you want to have some clear logic presented, here is an excellent article on the subject.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Closer to Finished

A while back I wrote about the fact that some folks did not know how to measure and do simple math. After doing the calculations for them, some more of the wallpaper arrived this week and all I have left now is an 8' x 10" strip behind the powder room door. That will make 4 trips to north Aldergrove when there should have been one. This is the front of the house.

The back of the house, surrounded by bush. I was standing in what will be the detached garage/workshop, to take this photo.

The powder room. This setup is impossible to wallpaper after the vanity is installed due to the very narrow gap between counter top and wall.

They were kind enough to install the toilet after the wallpaper. This wallpaper is much nicer than what the photo shows. You cannot see the vertical silver striations running throughout the pattern.

The dining room was a four hour project first thing Monday morning. It hung beautifully and looks great up. The ceilings are 9' high and that wainscoting is almost 6' high.

The wrap on the inset window is a very nice feature. The cleanup crew was right behind me and the owners are moving in this week. Another nice home by Rockridge Developments.

Monday, February 18, 2013

The Silo Series Continues

I continually check Hugh Howey's website to see how he is progressing with his "Wool" series. I was hooked from the start and now have just completed "Third Shift.. Pact" only a few days after it was released. I have explained the premise for this science fiction story in previous reviews. Each new novel (this is the eighth) reveals a few more tantalizing details about the grand plan, a plan which is slowly falling apart as those who are supposed to be in the dark and taking their 'forgetful pills' are discovering details and history beyond their imaginations. They sense that there is manipulation on a grand scale, being perpetrated on them, and they sense that somehow, there is freedom on the horizon. Oh, the indomitable human spirit that never gives up hope. It is a theme that runs throughout the history of mankind and sometimes is so tantalizingly portrayed by a good writer.  
4 stars