Thursday, March 18, 2010


I could smell it before I saw it, that first sure sign of spring. Just the faintest whiff of honey came wafting through my open windows, luring me outside like a beckoning finger. I had no choice but to follow it back to its source. It led me on a merry chase, as the signs were small and subtle, not big and flashy, but at last I spotted it. Well, not it. Them. They were everywhere! Every one of the native agarita shrubs on the property had suddenly sprouted coats of tiny yellow blossoms. After the blooms will come berries, which are supposedly great for making jelly, but I'll have to be desperately hungry before I'll ever be tempted to make it. Those shrubs are prickly sons of guns!

It won't be long until the honey scent is replaced with that of grape bubblegum or Kool-aid, but I won't need to search for the source. I'll know exactly where to look, for I saw the signs just yesterday. The Texas Mountain Laurels are budding out!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


John's feelings are hurt because I've only posted pictures of what I planted last weekend, and ignored the results of all his back-breaking labor with the pickaxe. So, here you have it: 3 new purple loropetulums; 2 new Will Fleming yaupons (one on each end of the house),

which grow tall and narrow like an Italian Cypress, but which are probably better suited to Texas; 7 assorted yuccas to go with the native ones already here; his delightfully contorted Harry Lauder's Walking Stick (in the pot); and last but not least, his precious little peach tree.

Is that everything Hon? Sure hope so - cuz those are the only things that have been gettin' watered!


I know, I know - you're only supposed to plant those veggies your family eats a lot of, but how could I resist the temptation of something like Orange Chiffon Swiss Chard, or Red Veined Sorrel? Once again, my left brain is at war with my right. I think one is supposed to be dominant over the other in most people, but I seem to have equal measures of creativity and practicality - and they don't always get along very well! Anybody got a great recipe to share, for sorrel, chard or kale? Something for people who grew up thinking fresh asparagus was exotic?

(click image to enlarge)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


One bed filled with lettuces, cabbage, kale, chard and broccoli. Big red pots partially planted. Funky purple, orange and lime green plants for a funky orange and purple pot - love that combo!


Just a few days ago, I think I told you that the best thing about having this blog is all the great photos I've got now - reminders of my good life. Well, I've since decided that the best thing about having both a blog and facebook, is the unbelievable connections they bring about. Wait. Make that "having a blog, facebook, and Mimas." Mustn't leave Mima's out of this story - all roads lead to Mima's!

Not long ago an old friend, whom I hadn't seen since high school, found me on facebook. There she saw a link to my blog, followed it over, and was astounded by what I had written. This Lovely Lady then left a comment that read "You like Mima's? I love Mima's too!" You see, though she and her hubby have been in New Jersey for seven years, they have "connections" in Wimberley. That connection happens to be the ever-interesting lady pictured here with her new grandbaby. You might remember her from my previous tale of embarrassment, upon discovering that she was even more of a Mother Earth than me, and not at all the California Blonde I had assumed her to be back in high school. Thanks to Not-a-Blonde, Lovely Lady & Hubby now own a home right here in Wimberley, which they hope to retire to they can eat at Mima's any time they wish.

LL&H are actually here in Wimberley this week, doing some work on that house. So, we three girls decided to have a meet up at, you guessed it, Mima's! When we got there, we walked right past LL's husband, without even realizing it. He'd been waiting for us to show up, just so he could meet me and say hi. He refused our invitation to join us for lunch, but agreed to sit down and chat for "just a moment." Two hours later, we finally paused for breath. I was only sorry that John wasn't there to join in the fun.

You see, I can tell already that our two hubbies will get along just fine. John has had several great friends through the years, and they all seem to fit a certain profile. They have different hobbies and interests, and completely different backgrounds, but they all have one thing in common - they are storytellers. I think that would be a very apt description of LL's hubby. If you recall, I once asked our friend Tim (a storyteller extaordinaire) how he and John became best buds back in Bahrain, when they have so little in common. His reply? "Well, you see, I like to talk. John likes to listen. You might say we're a match made in heaven." I just hope LL&H don't put off retiring too long. I see fun times ahead for us all!

P.S. When I got home, I found out that John had lunch at Mima's too, and probably walked out the door only seconds before we arrived. In fact, he and LL's hubby were probably there at the same time, if only they'd known it!

Monday, March 15, 2010


Most of you have probably heard of SXSW (South By Southwest) - the big hoopla that is held in Austin every year - because of the music and films, but did you know about the "interactive" part of the conference? I guess it covers just about anything to do with technology. My niece, who is in publishing, was sent here several times to attend, and once we drove over to pick her and her husband up from their hotel. When John saw the throngs of "interesting" people filling the streets and sidewalks, he began whining "I want to come hang out with these people! This is just too cool!"

Last night, his wish finally came true. Who does he have to thank? Me and my blog friends! One fairly recent addition to the Interactive conference is The Texas Social Media Awards, sponsored by the Austin American Statesman, and one of this year's winners just happens to be the amazing Ms. Pamela Price, from San Antonio. Her blog Red, White, & Grew helped launch a resurgence of Victory Gardening, and she was also instrumental in the Eat The View campaign that managed to convince the Obamas to plant a vegetable garden on the lawn of the White House. For some unknown reason, she was kind enough to invite me to the awards shindig, held at The Cedar Door in Austin, last night. I, in turn, was kind enough to invite John to be my escort. (Actually, I invited Alexis first, but when I found out that John would be around then, she got bumped. She didn't mind at all.) So, thank you Pamela, for making John's dreams come true. He was like a kid in a candy store!

Sunday, March 14, 2010


The nurseries were a-hoppin' this weekend. We bought a whole truck-load of pots and plants at Great Outdoors (in Austin) yesterday. Then we turned around and went back to King Feed for more!


Guess what my youngest did yesterday? John just told Austin, a couple of days ago, that he was probably going to give up the townhouse mid-summer, and Austin should start thinking about where he'd like to live after that, "but of course, take your time, there's no rush or anything." Sooo, John leaves to come here on Friday, and the next day we get a call saying Austin has already signed a lease, and he moves out in two weeks!

The kid is over the moon cuz he found just what he was looking for, at a price he could afford, down in the old Houston Heights area where I used to work. That's where one of his good buddies lives, and it's much closer to all the live music venues he frequents. Best of all, he'll be in walking distance to Onion Creek Cafe - the place I used to call my home away from home - with it's great coffeehouse atmosphere in the mornings, a neighborhood hangout with beer and wines in the evenings, wonderful decks for dining al fresco, and a farmers' market each Saturday. On top of all that, he should have a fairly easy commute to work, since he'll be right at I-10, but traveling against most of the traffic. What more could a guy ask for?

We can't help but be happy for him - he's sooooo excited. But still, I'm thinking a certain someone is reeeeally gonna be missin' that boy and his puppy, once they move out!