Well, I must be having fun! Time sure has flown. I find it hard to believe that tomorrow is June 1st but that's what my calendar is telling me. The flowers are saying it's June. Here is the first red rose out of the garden and it smells delightful! I have two clematis (the other is pink and white) planted in the same pot and had the intention of them blooming at the same time. Well, they don't. How pretty that would have been.
What have I been up to this past week??
I worked all week - driving a lot between appointments. I drove 320 miles start to finish on Friday alone. I was almost into Danville, VA on Hwy 29 North from Greensboro, NC when the skies opened up! It poured! It continued all the way home (about an hour east of Danville). That was okay because I was expecting a visitor!
Sally arrived at the house via her little blue VW bug shortly after I did. She left Cedar Key, FL early that morning and made it to my houre in VA around 6:00 PM. We promptly popped open a bottle of wine, sat at the kitchen table, and caught up. Out came the knitting needles, recent purchases, etc. in a "let me show you this" and "have you seen this?" visit.
I just love Sally! I have such a good time with her. Our meeting was serendipitous. I was at rug hooking camp in the early 1990's and mentioned to another rug hooker that I didn't know anyone living near me who hooked. She gave me Sally's name - at that time she lived in Richmond (2 hours from me). I called her and introduced myself and soon after we arranged for me to drive up and meet her. With my boys in tow to attend a Welcome House Korean Picnic sponsored by the Korean school and the adoption agency in Richmond we went through to adopt our boys, I met Sally. We all went to the picnic and had a grand time. This meeting led to many more shared weekends and overnight stays. My boys loved going to her house. We always had such a good time together. Still do!
Yesterday, we headed off to Greensboro, NC to Gate City Yarns. We stopped by Simple Kneads Bakery (YUUUMMMMM!) and Mary Contrary (nice shop with the cutest greeting cards). The weather could not have been more perfect. We ate lunch outside at an umbrella'ed table at Liberty Oak Restaurant & Bar right across the corner from Gate City. I had a Granny Smith sandwich with turkey, Granny Smith apple slices, bean sprouts, and blue cheese. Delicious! Then, as if either one of us was suffering from a driving / riding deficit, we headed off to Hillsborough, NC. There, we visited Hillsborough Yarn Shop, Callaway Jewelry - Spiral Studios, and Matthew's Chocolates (where sadly no purchase was made). I had my camera with me the entire time but thought I didn't. Result - not a single picture was taken!
Finally, we made it home - fed all my four-legged friends and settled down - again - at the kitchen table with our knitting needles. This time, I taught Sally the Magic Loop method for socks using a #2 35" circular needle and a skein of Ty-Dy (80% superwash wool, 20% nylon) from Knit One Crochet Too. This yarn is so light and cool feeling. Perfect for summer socks. She did very well and I got her through the heel flap, the heel turn, and the gusset pick-up stitches. She's ready to start on the foot part. I worked on my cabled baby blanket and only have about 23 rows left before I start on the border. I can hardly wait to start on the border! Can't wait to knit that purple onto the lime green. I finished the first sock and have started the second one.
We also exchanged stuff. She gave me one of her clivia's babies from a plant that she takes back and forth with her from Florida to Maine. The plant is from one her mother had and has bloom shoots that produce clusters of orange flowers. The roots remind me of an orchid. I have it laying out to dry a bit before planting it. I sent an aloe plant that I fell off my plant and I rooted and a lavender plant rooted from my big bush in the garden. I also send tons of cut herbs with her - rosemary, lemon balm, mint, and santolina - to make eye masks and whatnot. She'll have the most fragrant car on Interstate 95 North!
After Sally left, Annie and I walked the backyard, put shelled sunflower seeds in the saucers for the bluebirds, and filled the birdfeeders. The bluebird box on the east side of the driveway has a very well-built nest (second this season) but no eggs yet. The one of the west side is awaiting a new nest.
I also took some pictures of the gardens. Need to get mulch and pine needles and then I'll be done for this year. In the picture on the left, you can see the corner of my studio and the walkway leading to the perenial garden beside it. In front is another garden - the one that used to be full of rosebushes. Some have died so I've pulled them up - need to pull a few more up - and have planted / transplanted some new stuff to fill the space. The picture to the right is St. Frances of Assisi watching over the azalea bushes. (You can click on the pictures to get a closer look.)
On the way back up the driveway to the house, I took this picture. It's my favorite view of our home, Rebel Hill. The thought of leaving the house, the studio, the yard, the gardens after 25 years just turns my stomach. Things change, don't they?