Monday, September 15, 2014

Last Hibiscus of Summer

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Well, maybe not the very last, but certainly one of the last.  A quick iPhone shot on a cloudy and fall feeling day.

If you have a few minutes, please check out my latest post over on GeekMom where I talk about Google Auto Awesome photos.  Thanks!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Rainbow of Coneflowers

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Mums creating a purple background.  White coneflowers standing out.  A pink dreamy beauty in the background.  Just another trip to the Wal-Mart Garden Center.

9/11 Timeline

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This shot is part of a wall containing the 9/11 timeline.  I saw this at the National Museum of the Marine Corps in October 2012.  There's no way to stand before this wall and not relive the day.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

PeeLee Mum

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This gorgeous plant is peelee mum.  I took this shot yesterday on my way into Whole Foods Market in Cary.  They had about 30 pots set-up on a stand just outside their front door.  Super pretty!  I resisted, but it was hard!

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Chinese Flame Tree

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I thought this was some sort of Chinese lantern tree,and when I Googled it, I found a similar picture labeled Chinese Flametree. Some liken it to the flowers of a bougainvillea and call it bougainvillea raintree. There are about 6 of these trees in Fuquay-Varina near the 5 points intersection (Sheetz). An abandoned business sits on the corner, and considering the prominent spot, I suspect someone will buy the land and put up a new building. I sure hope they save the trees when they do that! They are 25' tall and nearly as wide and totally gorgeous. I picked up some lantern pods from the ground, and I wonder if I can germinate the seeds.  I'll give it a try.

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It's in the 60s here today, still sprinkling, breezy, and cloudy.  I took over 100 pics, but they weren't very sharp.  I've done some post processing to try to bring back a little detail and saturation.  I will make an effort to go take more pics of these beautiful leaves when the sun is back.

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Monday, September 8, 2014

Homemade Ice Cream

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To celebrate the official NFL season kick-off, I made homemade ice cream.  The recipe is soooo simple:
3 egg yolks, 3 cups fresh cream, 1 tablespoon arrowroot flour, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, and 1/2 cup maple syrup. Mix all the ingredients together and put in the Cuisinart for about 25 minutes.  I originally got this recipe from The Healthy Home Economist, and I keep using it because it's so good.

Now, the big bowl with soaked and dried pecans, organic chocolate syrup, and a maraschino cherry is Don's bowl.  He likes his ice cream with lots of STUFF!  Johnny is pretty pleased too!

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Sunday, September 7, 2014

September Tablescape

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Today was the day!  I put away the lime green and teal blue tablescape items from July and put out the yellow, navy blue, and white items for September.  I'm pleased with how the table looks, but I'm already contemplating the next tablescape.  And of course, Joey and Johnny wanted to know why we couldn't put out the Halloween stuff:-)  Soon, I promise!

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I always use Corelle plates for my tablescapes, and this time I used the Country Cottage pattern which I remember picking up at Wal-Mart in the after Thanksgiving sale nearly two years ago.  The placemats, napkin rings, and napkins came from my favorite thrift store, Guardian Angel.  Placemats and cloth napkins usually go for 50 cents each, and a set of 4 napkin rings ranges from $1 to $3.      

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The glasses, blue vase, accent plates, and candle holders all came from Guardian Angel too.  Since the glasses have a weighted bottom with a paperweight-like design, I remember paying $1 a piece for them with no discount, but often you can find glasses cheaper with their buy one get one free deal.  The blue vase was $10, but I fell in love and thought it was worth it since it would be the focal point of the table.  Most of the accent plates and candle holders were in the $1 - $3 range.

I used PartyLite candles, my favorite, again this month too.  Gotta have a candle or 10 on the table!

I was able to pull together this table refresh on a budget, and I sure did have a lot of fun gathering the items, planning out the layout, and putting everyone out this morning.