Sunday, April 30, 2017

Wallflower Behavior........

A bashful flower that blooms off the side of the stem, not at the top of the plant. It is an unknown plant for me.  If the former owners planted it, I will give it a chance to show what it can do.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Great Fragrance.......Sinus Agitators.

The blooms of lilac makes us all sure the spring has arrived.  You have to wear your winter coat to go out and view them.  This cutting of them is a bonus as they continue to open their blooms and they are thriving in their bucket of water inside the house.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Yellow for Spring.......

The male goldfinch changes feather colors once it starts to warm up in the spring. The drab brown is gone and the new new yellow feathers have grown in to show off their look. There is enough older timber in my new neighborhood that the house finch and goldfinch are plentiful.

The shadow of the bar which holds the sock creates a dark band on the back of the bird.  It took three days or more before the birds really became interested in the new sock of seed.

My earliest memories of the goldfinch were of them along the timber areas of southern Iowa. The prairie-like fields on our farm were there because the land was too rough for my dad to cultivate into a corn field.  So the natural grasses and prairie plants would fill up the field and the goldfinches would dart around finding seeds to eat. In the fall the thistle plants would be loaded with birds.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Come In.........

I restricted my choice of photos with having no flowers photos today. Then I decided to share the entryway of the house and the new rug has flowers. It is a wonderful entry with a guest closet to the one side.  Our very first visitors needed a place to sit down in which to put on their shoes.  We are looking for the just right bench or piece of furniture to go in on the one side. Barney has discovered that the wood floor is cooler for him to lay on but the rug is good for his old bones. He lays half on it and half off to it.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Spring Blooms......

I brought to the house a new cutting of tulips. The red and yellow tulips are so striking in contrast to the white one.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Flowers from the Farm......

As we return to our old farmhouse that is in town, we feel like we really were from a farm. Our old community is surrounded by farm land and there are cattle on the edge of town in which new calves have been born.

The flowers are from the farm.  Here  with the tulips is included the apple blossoms from the one of three apple trees.   I am going to have to do the first mowing up there tomorrow.  My mower at the garden shed is waiting for me to get started.  The towns ditch along the road has grown up  with a lot of weeds so there is a lot to be attended to now. I mow in the city on Saturdays and will mow on Wednesdays at the farm.

Monday, April 24, 2017

New England Bluebells......

New England bluebells put out a great batch of color in the spring.  My earliest memories of this kind of plant ranges back to the farm when I was a young kid. I looked forward to finding them growing up among the past years tall dead grass.  The shapes of the flower bells are magical. I was so surprised and pleased to find that the property I bought in Woodward 40 years ago had bluebells spread all over the garden areas around the house. To have this very large plant of them in our front garden area now is a great treat.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Gift......

It was our last day to clear the storeroom of our upstairs.  The bulk of it has been packed and moved or was placed in the dumpster. A remaining guitar and a two empty boxes is all that is left in that room.  A candy can that had been in the boy's room years ago was opened by me during the last cleaning.
I thought the can was full of pennies just like the other can that I have moved home.  Instead of pennies, there were all these valuable marbles. I do not know the story behind these but I think my younger son could give me some clues.  This bowl full has a lot of marbles of different times.  The older ones are scattered through all the cat eyes and game marbles.

It will be fun to take the time to sort and study the marbles.  There are some large marbles, shooters, in the collection.  I do remember buying bags of marbles at garage sales in my early years and I think some of them are those. I kind of wondered where they all had gone.  I sure hope that it was me that put those marbles into the can and my mind let the memory go.  The can has a decoration on the side showing the date to be 1988.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Going Green......

When strangers have planted the garden that I now own, I can't identify a lot of the plants. I will wait and see the blooms and maybe some answers will be available. This grows next to my front step and the foliage is a nice looking one.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Color and Pattern.......

My neighbor had me photograph a quilt that she owns.  It was made by a one of her relatives and it was just recently quilted by a person using a quilting machine. The patterns of the sewing in the white field looks great.

Thursday, April 20, 2017


We avoided the bad storm that hit the southwest corner of Iowa.  I could see the lightning strikes and a little bit of thunder but we were not a part of that storm. Our panoramic view of the sky is all covered with clouds this morning.  We did see the sun shine yesterday off and on through out the day.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Tulip Time........

I brought home a bouquet of some of our tulips from the older home. Spring has sprung up there as flowers are sprouting and blooming. The smaller white tulips are growing under a bush that has become too big for them.  I had to crawl under the bush to cut them.

Monday, April 17, 2017


I can take no credit for this plant other than I bought the property that is sits on to bloom. My bleeding heart plant at the old house is not as protected as this one and its blooms are less mature.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Saturday, April 15, 2017


I am inspecting various boxes and tubs in the basement to find what needs to be place somewhere in the house.  As I opened up one of the tubs I was surprised to see this. My wife had quickly emptied her hope chest so the movers could take it downstairs and out to the truck.

I did not see any of the transfer of items so I was surprised to open this up and to see Kermit and Miss Piggy looking back at me. They were given to the boys back when they were really young and were fans of Sesame Street and the Muppets.  I don't know how they got into the hope chest but I certainly glad this piece of history has been preserved.  I threw away a Scooter doll at the old house as he just didn't wear well in 35 years. It is nice to see some things just have permanent smiles all day long. 

Friday, April 14, 2017

Friday's Resting Place......

Using an appliance dolly, I was able to brim by flagstone slab down my hill to put it into my back yard.  The bench moves south with us and the garden angel joins the rest of my sculptures in my new backyard.

It should be a shady area for the sculpture with a pussy willow bush, spruce tree, and red twig dogwood shrubs next to it. I can not move everything from my old garden but I do plan to pick some of its specialties and place them in the new area.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Clutter Still Life.......

The moving process forces us to look at all that we have and what we need to eliminate. Different pieces have history to different people and others are a puzzlement to both of us.  The cup of clear and red glass is something we have but we don't know anything about it. The oldest thing here is the green glass from my mom's collection of six.  They were never used by her and the value of them as an antique item that doesn't have much value. We use them in colored glass displays. The time element seems to force us to move it and then evaluate it true purpose and future.  We did decide that we need a glass display cabinet, old or new, in which to put some of the most special things.  I will stop collections things now with the idea that just because it is old, I don't need to collect it.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Bradford Pear...........

It is a pear tree that never produces fruit.  The area in which I live was started back in 2003.  Some of the streets are lined with bradford pears.  Other streets show evidence that the homeowners have removed some of them.  I have two of the original three still growing in my yard but very few other neighbors still have them growing.

The trunk of the tree really does look like a pear tree that produces fruit. I really was puzzled about the kind of trees that they were until all of them started to bloom.  Some streets that we travel is lined with the trees from the top of the street to the bottom of it.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Tuesday's Blooms

A visit to the old house on Monday to pack and clean up places in the house  meant picking some flowers that were blooming.  I didn't take them all but there were a couple of places where they had bloomed.  I didn't get blooms last year so it was nice to see most of them had proceeded a few blooms. Our new house has bad tulips and no daffodils. The neighbors to the west have a wonder planting of red tulips.

This other variety originated at my parents home and I had moved some of the bulbs up from southern Iowa. I like both kinds of flowering daffodils.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Lily in Bloom......

There are enough buds on the plant that it should have blooms through next Sunday.  

Sunday, April 9, 2017


The original owner of the barn set, my 41 year old son, wants me to clean it up for his two sons.  I do think that it is a good idea.  I had a couple of different farm sets when I was a kid back in the late 1950s. It will be fun to clean up all the different toys that we moved to our newer home.  We have a full finished basement for the boys to use as a playroom.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Checking the Sky..........

My deck gives me a big sky view of the world. Our weather will be warm temps with lots of wind today.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Spring Bloom.....

Our temperatures are not so great but the flowers and trees are liking the season to come.  I will have to mow the lawn here in Ankeny in the next week.  I did get a new gas grill for my birthday and I will be using it as soon as I can grill without wearing a winter coat.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

The Sun Rises.....

East in our new house has moved. The new residence sits on a curved road and my youngest son pointed out to me that the back of the house almost faces straight north.  I thought it was east but when I go out onto the deck the sun is over my right shoulder. I have more sky to see and photograph.

Because we live on a curved street that goes uphill we have a large sky view from the front yard also. Barney and I are getting to know the new place off and on throughout the morning and night.

It is good to be back.  I won't begin to share our experience of getting the internet up and running. I am back but have piles of things to unpack.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Exit to No Internet Land....

We do have rabbits at our new place.  We also have cardinals visiting our spruce pine. I don't know if I can handle it but I will be off the internet soon as the new place is not hooked up to the internet.  It took us three days to get them to listen to us that we needed some service.  After getting through the hour long process to get things set up they say they can't come until Monday for a land line, internet and cable.  I asked why, as I can't believe they are so booked up to not give us a phone line.
Sooooooooo, it will be hit and miss as to me being on the blogs.  I will be working on the house to get it ready for sale while living in the other house.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017


It has rained all day.  The leaves you see from the photo of the past shows what will be happening soon on the birch tree.  The bud debris keeps falling on the cars and sidewalks.  I see we walk it into the house as we walk the dog.

We moved major items today to the new home.  "Two men and a Truck" show up early and begin to remove all the large furniture items. I finished clearing my desk and move an aquarium while they worked.  They were such nice young men.  They had it out of the house in less than two hours.  Actually a third man showed up to help out so it went that much faster. It would be worth it to hire them to come back and take all of the boxed items if you didn't get any outside help.  Our boys will be here soon to pitch in with this endeavor.

Our old antique furniture looks good scattered through the house as it blends with the new furniture.  We have an order of furniture coming in on Friday which will help to fill in the gaps that we have right now.  We did get the painting done in the master bedroom, but we have not had the time to remove the frog painting tape.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Time for Tea........Anyone.

As I finished packing up my toy cabinet, I did make it to the bottom of the cupboard. The china set was at the very bottom with some more war soldiers.  I bought this children tea set for my wife many years ago.  It reminded me of her good china which also has pink roses on it.  The cabinet has been moved now into the "to go" grouping of furniture to me taken by the "2 men" on Wednesday.

Monday, March 27, 2017

What Is it?

I saw the archived photo and I wondered what is that photo all about.  I see now it was a former art project example that I made as an example. I have a Monet-like painting on the back cover of an old book and a more modern Kandinsky-like painting on the cover..

Books are being sent to the landfill at a rapid pace.  Different librarians have different sets of values when it comes to the weeding out of old books.  I think sometimes a good book is thrown because of its age rather than because of its value to the a reader.  I used many old books for this recycle art project.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Looking Forward......Not Back.

Where did all those other birthdays go?  It seems to have been a long journey to get to my age and yet the mind doesn't tell me that it is time to slow down. My wife gets the credit for my "Photo a Day" blog.  She has been taking behind the scene shots as we work ourselves into this new dwelling.  It has been dreary days of rain so it makes it less fun.  Some sunny days will brighten up the mood for painting and packing. It is feeling like home now even though we haven't officially owned it more than three days.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Two Geese Included........

It was to my great surprise to see that the previous owners had left their Canada Geese.  The realtor didn't say anything about it, but I know he heard me at the first viewing of the house comment on the great garden, blue spruce tree and the geese. I told him that we were gardeners.  Since they were moving to Boston, they maybe don't need them at a townhouse.  The previous owners left different things that seemed to me kind gestures from them.  There are also six or more red twig dogwood shrubs along the back fence. Fencing for around the garden also is inside a double doored shed that they left next to the patio.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Comfort Food......

My wife and I love waffles and it is something we eat when we just don't want to prepare a evening meal.  Barney really likes them as we will feed him one while we are eating them.  Leftovers are also his treat with peanut butter at certain times. We had a long day today as we took possession of our new home.  It is very overwhelming to have a full house that is empty, ready for us to put our stuff into it. We are making plans for the placement of furniture and need to paint the bedroom. We did decide that we don't like the yellow bedroom walls because it leans close to a yellow green rather than being yellow.  Another next bedroom has a cream color and when you look from the room into the yellow bedroom it does look green. Ace hardware is about a mile away from our house so we will be getting to know them better.

Thursday, March 23, 2017


I spent time yesterday working on the skylight opening. I have the enclosure painted and it is ready for a second coat.  I have temporary wood moulding on it to help with the installing of the ceiling tile.  I will get it finished up so it will look like one is looking through a frame as they look up and out the window. The view looking up through the roof is an amazing experience.  I would like to have a room with skylights in our new home some day