Saturday, May 30, 2009

Another Saturday Excursion

Just north of Harrisonburg on Route 11 is Harper's Lawn Ornaments. This has been a gardener's wonderland for ornaments and garden statuary for over 40 years. Most of the goods are made on site. In recent years, Harper's has developed a very nice water garden and fountain business. If you have a few hours to relax and meander, take a day trip and enjoy the sites.

There are mirrored balls,

beautiful fountains, and water gardens. Can you see the pineapple on the top of this fountain? These things are more affordable than you think.

Today, I am looking for something special. Hum, I don't think I need a lion.

I can't use a dragon today, either. Maybe another trip.

This boot is not my size. I'm not sure about the color, either. I don't think Stacy or Clinton would say it follows the rules.

These shoes look like the ones my dad wore around the farm except he would not wear shoes with holes in them.

I love these classic urns, but man, are they heavy! You can find all sizes and shapes of containers

and pedestals. This is just a sampling, and I do mean a sampling! You can find wares that are painted in various tones or the unfinished white pieces.

A pineapple finial is a must for my next trip.

These dogs belong in my friend Valerie's yard.

If this were gray, it would look like Cathy's dog, Mr. Kahlo. In fact, I bet this piece is heavier than Kahlo.

What about a squirrel

or two

or three? I would consider nailing this on the oak tree outside the kitchen window. This is a cute feeder! Maybe, I'll add him to next trip's list.

If I had pebbles somewhere, I would definitely bring this to Applejack Lane.

If you need a pig for your yard, I know where you can find one!

This is such a sweet piece, but I don't have a wall for this little boy and dog on which to sit at Applejack Lane.

I usually pick up a rabbit, but I thought this one was a little weird. His pose reminded me of a dog wanting to play.

Oh, WOW! A pink flamingo! Now, this is a possibility! I just heard about a pink flamingo party earlier this morning. He could join the flamingos I got for Mother's Day! But, alas, I must remember my mission.

Hum, now we are getting somewhere.

This is a sweet piece. I wonder.......

Ah, ha! This is what I want today. An apple leaf birdbath to go on Applejack Lane! But, it is not going to be a birdbath. You will have to stay tuned it to see what I plan for this.

Goodbye, Mr. Lion. Another fun morning at Harper's Lawn Ornaments. Until next time!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Art in the Park

Saturday morning, I went to Art in the Park at Gypsy Hill. It is a yearly event to showcase local and not so local artists. The weather was absolutely gorgeous, and many families enjoyed the amenities that the park had to offer.

I stopped by to examine cutting boards that were made from trees indigenous of this area. They had beautiful tree ring markings to add to their beauty.

This was an interesting vendor from Hot Springs. His friend in Utah made picture frames out of slate by water cutting. Some of the slate pieces had evidence of fossilized material within them.

Some beautiful stained glass art was also on display.

Several years ago, Cathy gave me a gourd birdhouse made by Susan Wolf of Toms Brook. I was happy to see her display here in Gypsy Hill. Doesn't this cat look like he just swallowed a canary?

I saw an old teacher friend here at this tent. Betty, second from the left, has been teaching an environmental class through Mary Baldwin College. This year's theme has been Lewis Creek, a mainstay of Staunton. Lewis Creek has its source less than half a mile from Applejack Lane.
Betty's students incorporated art and journaling in the ecological studies. The animal box sculptures which portrayed the animals of Lewis Creek were well done. The students who had their work on display were very talented.

Even the dogs enjoy Art in the Park.

It's time to leave. But I must make one more stop by the infamous Duck Pond. One of my favorite artists, Mary Ann Vessey, did a print of the Duck Pond several years ago. Every family in the vicinity has memories of taking their children there to feed the ducks, swans, and fish. Art in the Park is one of the simple pleasures of living in Staunton, Virginia.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

It's Pink Saturday!

It's Pink Saturday again, and I want to show you the rhododendrons that are blooming in the back of our house next to the patio. This variety is Nova Zembla. We had this variety at our home in Staunton and wanted to add this color when we moved to to Applejack Lane.

It is too bad these cannot survive in the front of the house. They make such a stunning display, but the heat of the sun there would just sizzle them.

The blooms will only last about two weeks. Then, the rains seem to wash them away. That's when the deadheading begins, and we prepare for next year's bloom. Happy Pink Saturday!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

All Good Things Must Come to an End

The call came today at 3:15 P.M. Cathy had finished her job in Roanoke and was on her way to pick up Kahlo and take him back to Richmond after his five day vacation at Applejack Lane. He has been a good house guest. He spent so much time out in the yard playing ball, sniffing country smells, rolling in the grass, and catching a lot of rays. He , Velcro, and Murphy entertained themselves by playing hide and go seek. But all good things must come to an end. When I drove up into the driveway, Cathy and her friend James from the USGS had already arrived, and Kahlo was very excited to get into the back seat of the big truck and move it on down the highway. I could tell he had been in this truck before. His backseat window had Kahlo snoodles all over it.

Cathy was happy to see her companion after five days. I had to get a picture of her driving this big truck. Her dad gets a real charge out of seeing her in it. She is so small, and the truck is so big.

Off they go, Kahlo with his head sticking out of the window smelling that great country air until they get on Interstate 81 and 64. Then, the window goes up until they close in on the Fan district in Richmond.
Velcro really enjoyed having Kahlo for a playmate. He seems a little lost already without his city friend.
Maybe he will wait right here staring into the driveway until Kahlo visits sometime in June or July.

We had a great time with Kahlo. Don't wait so long to return to Applejack Lane.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Kahlo Comes to Visit

It's Kahlo's BIG DAY! He's spending his vacation with us this week on Applejack Lane while Cathy is on a work related trip. While he is here, he will go to the store and be a Hallmark greeter for a couple of days. He will get to go to Pet Smart if he is an extra good dog which I am very sure he will be. Of course, he was here only about two hours until he decided to roll in something that was quite unpleasant and had to have a bath. But he promised that he would not do that anymore while he is visiting. He will have a great time exploring in the yard, doing ballet jumps on walks, chasing tennis balls, and playing with his pal Velcro.

Kahlo brought along a hostess gift as any good dog should do. (He really has impeccable manners when he is not rolling in things that are unpleasant.) Take a look at the next photo to see what he gave us.

He knew I would like a set of pink flamingos since Cathy and I went to Tampa a few weeks ago. Thank you, Kahlo. (and you too, Cathy).

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Lemon Ricotta Cheese Cookies

Last night, I tried a new recipe by Giada DeLaurentis from The Food Network. They are yummy and will be just right for our church's Lemonade on the Lawn.

Lemon Ricotta Cookies with Lemon Glaze
Lemon Ricotta Cheese Cookies
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 (15-ounce) container whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 lemon, zested

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.


In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In the large bowl combine the butter and the sugar. Using an electric mixer beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating until incorporated. Add the ricotta cheese, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Beat to combine. Stir in the dry ingredients.

*Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Spoon the dough (about 2 tablespoons for each cookie) onto the baking sheets. Bake for 15 minutes, until slightly golden at the edges. Remove from the oven and let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 20 minutes.


Combine the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a small bowl and stir until smooth. Spoon about 1/2-teaspoon onto each cookie and use the back of the spoon to gently spread. Let the glaze harden for about 2 hours.

*I used a one inch cookie scoop to make a smaller cookie. I baked these about 9 minutes. I got about 6+ dozen cookies that way.

I also learned that I need to keep the batter cool. The last batch spread too much during the baking process.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

It's Another Pink Saturday!

It's another Pink Saturday, and I thought I would introduce you to one of the UGLY DOLLS-the pink one of course-OX. He's the one on the right with one big yellow eye and an X for the other.
His description on his little green tag goes something like this: What kind of name is OX? No, not like the animal. OX, as in Hug and KISS! How can he hug you with such short arms? OX uses his ears! He's not a very good listener, but he puts his ears to good use in many other ways! OX is great at magic and his best trick is turning your stuff into his stuff. His best buddy WEDGEHEAD calls that stealing. But OX just wants to borrow things from you for a few hundred years. He promises to put everything back when he's done.

Maybe you have seen the UGLYDOLLS before. They are quite the rage now. I just thought I would share one with you to give you a smile on PINK SATURDAY.

Wordless Wednesday!

It's WORDLESS WEDNESDAY and the theme is Blooming!

Visit French Lique, Texas for more on Wordless Wednesday!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Today Is Mother's Day!

Mother is the name for God in the lips and hearts of little children. -William Makepeace Thackeray

My Grandmother Waybright lived in Blue Grass in Highland County, Virginia. One thing I remember from visiting her home as a child was a little watering can that I played with. I would get water from a little spring and water her Bleeding Hearts. When I moved to the country, one of the first perennials I wanted to plant were those Bleeding Hearts. They are just beginning to bloom-not quite the display they will be in a week or so. But since it is Mother's Day, I want to post them in honor of Maw Maw, my mother Jeanette, Aunt Nin, Aunt Sites, Baba, and Mrs. Cook. I know the members of my family will also see these pink Bleeding Hearts and reminisce those days back in Blue Grass where our hearts were young and gay.

Happy Mother's Day to all to mother's in my family-Shirley, Leslie, Sandra, Beth, Virginia Ann, and Cathy (Kahlo's mother)!

Friday, May 1, 2009

It's Pink Saturday!

It's Pink Saturday. It is time to put away the Easter decor, but before I do I want to share a special egg from my Egg-stra special antique milk glass collection. These eggs were given as gifts during the late Victorian era at Easter time. Many of mine have hand painted designs or are embossed. Can you find the one with the pink painted roses?

Lucky the person who received this special rose painted egg!