Tuesday, March 16, 2010

they say it's your birthday

Happy birthday to me. 28 will be a good year. Yes it will.
I keep meaning to turn this photo into a painting:

Saturday, March 13, 2010

is that you, spring?

This past week we've seen glorious weather here in Ithaca, and everyone got a bit giddy as a result. I walked down to Collegetown to pick up a sandwich (BLT with avocado and parsley-garlic aioli mmmmm) wearing no jacket at all! My ears did get a bit cold, but if the crocuses can show their fragile petals amid the snowmelt, my lobes can survive without a hat.
Philadelphia last weekend was every bit as enjoyable as anticipated, and did a lot to brighten my outlook. It was wonderful to see sister and cousin. Alice remarked with surprise that it was the first time us three had gotten together independently as adults, outside of family holidays. One of these days us cousins need to set off on some traveling adventures together.

The flower show was satisfying. The theme was "Passport to the World" which resulted a variety of plants from various climate zones (i.e. both temperate and tropical plants and everything in between). There were hand-sized cattleya orchids:

Amazing bromeliads:

And extravagant nightclubs featuring waterfalls and green walls:

I came home with two little tiny orchid babies, whom I am hoping will survive babyhood. I never thought I'd become an orchid nut, and now I catch myself whispering encouragingly to them. Haven't started playing Mozart for them yet, though, so you know I'm still this side of sanity.
Next year the Philadelphia Flower Show theme is "Springtime in Paris." I anticipate tableau involving artists, berets, baguettes, young lovers, and many Eiffel Towers. Maybe even a bateau-mouche made entirely of flowers. Who wants to go with me?
Back to real work now! Site construction awaits, always...

Thursday, March 4, 2010

yellow flag

Yellow is such a springtime color. I took this photo of yellow flag iris, Iris pseudacorus, somewhere in the vicinity of Hampstead Heath, London, in spring 2003. C'mon spring, you can do it! I am anticipating with great excitement a visit to the Philadelphia Flower Show this weekend. I have fond memories of the Boston Flower Show, which my family went to frequently when I was a little girl. The smells, the colors, the strange shapes, the tableaux, were all enchanting to wee Elizabeth. I think there's something wonderful about a collective swoon over these fragile growing beauties at a dark time of year. The fact that the flowers are blooming and the leaves are flourishing only through careful forcing and precise cultivation methods somehow does nothing to diminish the magic, at least for me.
I'm also excited to see my cousin perform in 'The Countess,' in the title role at Old Academy Players in Philadelphia. And my sister is coming down as well to join the flower and theater fun! Hooray! Expect more flower images soon...

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

cabin fever

Reading this article on foraging made me long to be able to wander in the woods, collecting various tasty wild edibles. Oh, how I miss being able to go outside without sinking ankle-to-knee deep in slush. Piles and piles of wet snow and mud outdoors, piles and piles of "to-do" lists piling up in my brain and on my desk... this is not a fun time of year.

I have a lot of photos in a rotating slideshow on my desktop, and the photos of flowers that I've been taking over the years have really been cheering me up. Since I have a whole lot to do and still haven't been able to get those paintings from my Key West vacation up on the blog, for now I will post a few flowers per week until spring comes (this may be a while, Ithaca being Ithaca).

Here is one of my favorites. This is Anemone occidentalis or Western Pasqueflower. It was growing in the Cascades, near Mt. Rainier. Click on the photo to enlarge it, and check out the beautiful downy hairs on its outer petals.