Saturday, February 26, 2011

Thinking warm thoughts

Why do furnaces always act up on extra-cold weekends? Meanwhile, maybe a peek at some bulb favorites photographed last spring-- fritillarias, daffodils and tulips -- will trick me into feeling warmer.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Simply inspired

This is Rosa. How can you not love her? Her beehive-inspired hairdo is made of rose petals. Her earrings appear to be tiny grass flowers. At her neck is a wildflower gathered in El Salvador.

Rosa was created by Roxhana, a member of Arte Comasagua, an artisan's organization that handcrafts designs, such as this line of greeting cards, from native plants and flowers in El Salvador. Arte Comasagua is affiliated with Hope for Women, a company that helps provide sustainable employment to economically disadvantaged women worldwide.

Rosa caught my eye on a shopping trip to the Cities. I love the way this card uses the old-fashioned craft of flower-pressing and mixes it with a few simple strokes from a pen to evoke a fresh, contemporary design. 

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Here comes the sun

We're definitely seeing more daylight in our days. Seed-sowing begins soon!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Seventh Day Project check-in

 The sky was flat and colorless until sunset on Feb. 7. 

We still have weeks of winter left at sillydoggarden, and the season is starting to try my patience. I try to make do with seed catalogs and houseplants and sorting through last year's images of Plant Kingdom favorites, but it's not enough. I want to walk through the garden without hearing the squeak of snow beneath my boots. Is that too much to ask?

Being in a mood like this, it was exceptionally challenging to document The Seventh Day Project: February 2011. But, with the silly dog by my side, I ventured out to see what was what. It is beautiful, but it looked a lot like January. I can only hope that the march toward March will have us in a warmer, more colorful place.

(The project has been posted; see sidebar.)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Here's a portion of the flock of waxwings perched in the trees earlier this week.

Suddenly, there they were in the aspen trees on the other side of the garage, clearly visible through the front window and the dining room windows. It was a flock of 50 or so waxwings. And so began the debate: were they cedar waxwings or Bohemian waxwings?

Some quick bird book and internet research later, we agreed they probably were Bohemian waxwings -- the rufous under the tail is what clinched it. In December, the Star Tribune reported that Bohemian waxwings were being sighted in large numbers across northern Minnesota. And the Crane Lake Nature Blog described a sighting of a flock of Bohemian and cedar waxwings together along Superior Street in Duluth in January. That blog also has some really nice photos showing the difference between the two waxwings. For good information about waxwings, check out the Cornell Lab of Ornithology's All About Birds.

We're just happy these feathered wanderers found their way to sillydoggarden.