Monday, March 24, 2014

It's Just So Nice

Spring has been early here, basically because we had no Winter.   It's been lovely outside and I've been enjoying the days of March.   

I'm riding Beau more and more, getting used to the Western tack and keeping the Dressage tack on the shelf.   It involves a new way of communicating with him that is less structured and allows us both to relax more.   I took a lesson from a new instructor last week and just a little made a big difference.   

Here at home, the peach tree has some tiny fruit starting.   The tree suffered from the Winter and I'm sure it won't produce as much as I'd like, but I'll take anything it offers.

We planted tomato plants yesterday.   Judging from the lines in the garden center at Home Depot, I suspect we weren't the only ones enjoying the Spring weather.   

Yes, we have almost 5 acres and I could have a much bigger garden.   But I'm starting smaller with these tubs before I launch into something I can't manage.   The next tub will have lettuce and a third...well, I'm still deciding.

My larger lilac bush is showing the usual glorious flowers.   Again, not as many as in past years, but they are as fragrant as ever.   I love love love my lilac bushes and would still love to have a few more when this drought is over.

We fired up the grill yesterday and put on some young asparagus drizzled with olive oil.   Oh boy, I don't think I've ever eaten so much asparagus in one day.   Don't you just love vegetables on the grill?   If it's not something you've ever tried, do it this year.   

I hope Spring is arriving in your area, or is showing signs of coming soon.   Thanks for stopping by today!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Spring Around Here

We had a nice Spring-y kind of weekend.   We still have green grass so we're enjoying that while we can.   With no more rain, it will be gone soon.   But in the meantime, it makes for prettier views and happier donkeys.   We have a little bit of container gardening planned for a few tomato plants and probably some lettuce.   We were going to build some raised beds but then decided to re-use and re-purpose some horse water tanks that are no longer needed for their original purpose.   It's a good start without spending the money for new beds.   Think outside the box!

Our blossoming trees and shrubs have had a tough year with the lack of rain and high temperatures (warmest winter in 119 years!).   They are all rather scraggly looking with only a few blossoms.   They blossomed out way too early and I think that doesn't bode well for much fruit.   Last year our Asian Pear was a gorgeous young tree and I was so hopeful we'd have lots of growth and blossoms and fruit this year.   We suspect the gopher family that took out the cherry trees has also attacked the pear tree.   Ugh.   It's so frustrating to do everything possible by putting the root ball in a cage.   Once it grows outside that cage, I guess the gophers can do whatever they want.   If we put in more fruit trees, I think we'll need a new location.   The peach tree looks like it won't produce much this year either so that's another disappointment.   Thankfully we have plenty of farmers markets in our area.

Lavender!!!   Lilacs!!!   I have two new lavender plants in pots and I am definitely going to plant more.   They are such a pretty flower and the bees love them too.   The lilacs are just starting to blossom and as with the trees, they look a little sad.   But their blossoms never disappoint.   

It's the season of bright colors and hopefully it's looking that way at your place too.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Dinner Outside My Window

I put out a second hummingbird feeder about two weeks ago and now I have about two dozen hummers that are enjoying my very delicious sugar water.   They are our original Anna's hummingbirds and now the adorable Allen's hummingbirds.   When I have frustration with the new version of iMovie, or some such thing, I just step outside the door and watch the little cuties for a while.   It helps me calm down.   I'm sharing them with you.   Please ignore the motorcycle which drove by at the wrong time, and the donkey yelling for his dinner.


Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Is There Such a Thing?

I have so many photos right now that I want to edit and share, but my mind skips from one group to another and I find myself not blogging about any of them.   Is there such a thing as too many photos? I don't think so, but I know that I need to get mine better organized.   I tried a new approach to that yesterday and realized there are too many things I still don't know about Lightroom.   With the onset of pollen season yesterday afternoon, I may now have some windy afternoons to figure out a few more organization tools.   While I'm deciding on flooring and paint colors.   *sigh*

I spent the weekend at a riding clinic and I'm editing a couple hundred photos to share with the group.     I will be working on it for a while, I'm sure.   I want to figure out the changes in iMovie so I can show you my hummingbirds at the feeders.   I also never showed you the rest of the high surf and the elephant seals and now the California Poppies are starting to show themselves in the lush green grasses that will be gone soon due to our rain having come and gone....*deep breath*....and more beautiful skies and I need to drive back over Highway 46 while the grasses are green....oh gosh, I'm going to need some more coffee!!!!

See you soon....or later?

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Massage Relief

For the past year, I have been getting a massage every two weeks.   It's not just a mild feel good kind of massage.   It's a "work out the knots" massage that focuses on some problem areas.   I have chronic tightness in my right neck/shoulder area from too many years of use in various ways.   Sometimes my lower back or hips want to chime in.   Helen is a lovely red-headed Brit who knows a whole lot about physiology and massage and all kinds of things.   She works magic on me and allows me to continue doing the routine things that are my life.

Last Wednesday I decided I was doing okay and decided to skip a week, pushing my appointment out to this afternoon.   I went over to the barn to help my friend with some things and spend time with the horses.   Just before noon, she calmly came back from driving her tractor and the manure spreader over to the orchard, and told me we needed to go get stitches.   She had somehow done some damage and had wrapped her finger in  her sweatshirt to help stop the bleeding.   So off we went.   The hospital is only 5-10 minutes away, but the time we spent was about 2 hours.   She ended up getting 8 stitches and a wrap over the finger that is big enough to cover a horse's leg.   And really, despite the pain she was in, we talked and laughed and had as good a time as you can have in the ER.   

So it was good that I rescheduled my massage.   But I am more than ready for Helen's magic today.   I have taken lots of photos over the past week and my camera with lens is heavy.   I also helped my friend drag a dozen 12 foot panels and set up a round pen on Monday.    Fortunately the major projects are finished and we can get into the routine of regular riding again.   

Still thinking a small mirror less camera might be in my future.   It would be nice to take hundreds of photos without feeling the strain from my camera.   Maybe someday....

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Color Choices

Since our true Spring is right around the corner, after about a couple of weeks of true Winter in our area, I have home projects on my mind.   That involves colors.   And color choices boggle my mind because there are really too many choices.   Way too many choices.   So many paint companies, so many color cards, so many samples, so many, so many, so many.....    

But I shall accept the challenge and persevere.   Stay tuned for a few episodes of me either losing my marbles or gracefully walking through the choices and arriving at the one that makes me smile.   This photo might give you a few hints.

Cayucos in the Storm

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Buckets Full of Rain

Holy Moly!   We had incredible storms this week.   On Wednesday our bucket had over an inch of rain after the storm.   I emptied it and put it back out Thursday night.   By yesterday evening, we had another 4.5 inches.   Wet chickens, wet donkeys, wet dogs, and today everything starts drying out a little after a few more light showers.   The winds were crazy but we were well prepared and only one tiny branch blew down from our redwood tree.   The power stayed on until someone crashed into a pole nearby and we lost power for a few hours yesterday morning.   PG&E crews don't like lines swaying across a main road, so they were on site within minutes.   

I have several short videos but they're on my phone and I have to download them into a format I can put on my blog.   They include some awesome waves at Morro Bay.   We had waves over 20 feet that were continuous.   The ocean was what you would call angry, although beautiful, and the coast was full of watchers throughout the day yesterday.   Avila Pier and Pismo Pier both suffered damage and were closed.   I don't think I'd like to walk out on a pier in that weather anyway.   

I took 400 photos yesterday and have only gone through a couple.   This will take a while because I really like so many of them.

The north side of the rock....

And the south side, against the jetty...

Our hills are already greener than they were a week ago.   Everyone is so excited about this rain and the prospect of a little relief.   It's not anywhere close to being a drought buster so the major concerns don't go away.   It's just so nice to see that Mother Nature still has something to offer us.   And we thank her.

What Have They Done?

Blogger made some changes this week.   I didn't dig in enough to understand them because most, I'm sure, don't apply to my needs...