Karma's When I Feel Like It Blog

July 21, 2014

Drear and Cheer

Filed under: 66 Days of Summer,What's Blooming — Karma @ 9:33 am
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Blog posts are starting to stack up on me here! I have photos to share for both days of the weekend but I think putting them all in one post might be a little much. Here’s my post for Saturday, day 30 of summer. I’ll write another for Sunday.

The day was overcast and a bit dreary. Motivation was low. Late in the afternoon I decided to take my unmotivated self for a walk around the yard, and I’m glad I did. Things had changed since the last time I really took a look. Different flowers and such were in bloom.
delphinium
These are what originally drew my attention outside. I saw a blur of purple that I hadn’t seen yet this year so I went to investigate. If I remember correctly, these are delphinium, part of my perennial garden in the front yard.

From that little garden, I walked along the side of my house to where my neighbor has an interesting variety of plantings. These lilies face my side of our properties.
neighbor lily
I’m not sure what kind these are but I found their color to be warm and inviting.

As you continue along the side of my yard and through the gate into the backyard, you’ll find my crazy concord grape vines. They’ve spread, with the help of birds I’m sure, from a little trellis they started on, up my house into the rain gutters and across into a bordering pine tree. At this point in the year, it is looking like it will be a plentiful grape season come September, if the birds don’t get them all first.
backyard grapes

Another flash of color caught my eye as I continued into the backyard. Do you remember when I planted bee balm for the hummingbirds a couple years ago? I was starting to wonder if that plant was yet another victim of this past harsh winter, but a few small blooms have survived.
bee balm

It is the time of the year for day lilies too. The bright orange of these flowers can be cheerful on the dreariest of days.
daylily

Well, I’ve finished my morning coffee, visited new blog posts from many of you, and enjoyed editing these flower photos in my Lightroom program. They seemed like the perfect shots for playing around with editing. I’ve got more to post about with Sunday’s little adventures – I’ll return later today with that post.

June 16, 2014

Promised Peonies…. and a little more

Filed under: What's Blooming — Karma @ 8:19 pm
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My other favorite flower that I grow in the beds around my home are peonies.  I don’t get tons of them on my humble little bushes, but I get enough to enjoy.  Last Friday for school I even pressed one into service as a hair accessory; it was “Tropical Day” so a hot pink peony got to help me complete my look.  I didn’t think to take a selfie for y’all, but here are some photos from the following morning of some rain-kissed beauties in my yard.

peony 1

peony 2

peony 3

peony 4

After I took the peony photos, I decided to take a little wander around the yard to see what else might be blooming. I was glad I did. I reminded myself, quite literally, to stop and smell the roses.
raindrops on roses

I just loved the big ol’ water droplet hanging out on the petal here.

Some of the new perennials that I planted in my perennial bed last year are blooming too. Forgive me, I can’t remember their names.
perennial 2

perennial 1

And of course I can’t forget the crazy poppy:
crazy poppy

How is your whimsical hunting coming along? Things have been busy around here lately and my own search for whimsy is not doing well. I’m considering extending the deadline a bit. I don’t think that would bother anyone would it?

June 7, 2014

They’re here!

Filed under: What's Blooming — Karma @ 7:53 am
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I love that song, though I’m not sure why it is called “Iris”. However, I thought it an appropriate intro to today’s post!

They are blooming like gangbusters right now and I just love them. One of my favorite flowers, bearded irises.
IMG_0894

IMG_0888

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IMG_0897

And I think, my favorite shot from the bunch:
IMG_0917

Peonies coming soon!

May 29, 2014

Hey Bud!

I mentioned in this post how bummed I was that I had barely any lilacs this spring. While that is still true, it appears as though my bearded irises are planning to make up for the lilac lack!
iris buds (1)

I’ve got lots of iris buds. I counted over 50 when I took these pictures!
iris buds (2)

I’m thrilled with the abundance of buds. They should be opening any day now. This blog will likely be flooded with their photos in the near future.

The peonies are budding too – and the ants have definitely found their way to that sweet scent.
peony buds

I guess you can’t call them buds, but the vegetable garden is under way as well. Despite a minor injury to my ankle that I suffered at Zumba class Saturday morning, with some help and some bribery of the teenagers in my life it is all planted. I got my girls’ and daughter’s boyfriend to do the clearing away of last year’s garden debris. Then I was able to comfortably scoot around and do the actual planting.
veggie garden (1)

This year I’ve planted 2 types of tomatoes, yellow bell peppers, jalepenos, cayennes, zucchini, cucumbers, broccoli and eggplant. I’ve never had a heck of a lot of luck with eggplant or bell peppers, but I decided to give them another try. Some little critter has already nibbled the leaves of the of one of the eggplant seedlings, so we’ll see what happens there.

I did plant all those annual flowers I showed you in my last post too. Those were mostly for containers, so that was easy, pleasant work.
dahlia hello!

I’ve been contemplating some kind of photo challenge too. As I told you at the beginning of the year (or technically at the end of last year) I’ve been trying to focus on the simple joys this year. There have been some rather trying events for both me and someone very close to me over the last couple weeks that, while I cannot discuss them here, have affected me deeply. They have left me feeling bereft of joy at times and attempting to seek it out wherever possible. I’d like to have a joy-themed photo hunt for June. It wouldn’t be a Karma kind of hunt if I just left it at that, though, would it? You awesome bloggers so often inspire me. Would you do me the favor of leaving some joyful comments or ideas or links? I think I could come up with just the thing with a little help from my friends!

May 18, 2014

Going Green

Filed under: For the Birds,What's Blooming — Karma @ 8:50 am
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I don’t care what Kermit the Frog says, I think it is pretty easy being green.

Robin calls it “a visit from the green man”. I call it finally feeling like spring. We’ve had some good rain, followed by days of sunshine, and my world is finally going green around me. The neighbors’ houses on the street behind mine have disappeared into the green:
Finally green

When I look around me I see fresh green leaves and green grass and I love it.
Greening

Next weekend, with any luck and a LOT of work, I will be greening-up my garden. I went to my favorite garden center yesterday for my “annual pilgrimage” and made my plant purchases.
Getting ready to garden

I’m yet to get a picture this year, but I have seen that wonderful “flash” of green – the ruby throated hummingbird. I’ve seen several taking sips at my feeder and flowers over the last week.

I do, however, have pictures I can share of another bird, in fact a bird family:
baby robins (1)

A robin has re-used the nest that was built on my flood light last spring and the 4 babies have quickly grown.
feeding time

I hope your world is going green too!

ETA: WordPress has just informed me that this is the 500th post here on Karma’s When I Feel Like It Blog. Wow! I’ve hit that publish button 500 times? Thanks to all of you who have been here and said hello anywhere from 1 to 500 times!

post-milestone-500-1x

May 3, 2014

Good Things Come to Those Who Wait

Filed under: What's Blooming — Karma @ 7:52 pm
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Waiting. I did a lot of it today. I sat in my car, waiting for Sarah…

Waiting...

for an hour! Sarah was taking the SAT’s today. The SAT website said 3 hours and 45 minutes should be allowed for the test. The SAT website said no phones are allowed, and they will be confiscated if students are found with them. So I arrived at the school 3 hours and 45 minutes after the test should have begun. No Sarah. Wait. Groups of kids begin to emerge from school. No Sarah. More groups. Frustration builds. Finally Sarah. Test started late. Lots of kids brought phones – were only told to power them down. Those kids’ parents, most likely did not spend an hour of their Saturday sitting in the parking lot of a high school, waiting. *Sigh*

Waiting for pizza…
Waiting for pizza
Pizzaria Uno has a nice online ordering system and curb side pick up. Order and pay online, they bring the food out to your car. I pull in and….wait. About 15 minutes after the time my order was to be done, a server appears at my window explaining that our pizzas were dropped and had to be re-made, but would be out in just a few minutes. Wait some more. Pizzas arrive, I take them home. Sarah’s is fresh and hot – mine, not so much. Obviously Sarah’s was dropped and remade while mine sat under a heat lamp and waited. *Sigh*

Waiting for spring…
first daffodil
My world’s latest daffodils are just starting to bloom. I don’t think I’ve ever waited until May to have them begin. Things seem to be several weeks behind in growth and bloom around here.
I’m still waiting for lilac buds:
Lilac leaves

Last year at this time, my lilacs looked like this:
lilac
That shot was taken on May 4, 2013.

Bleeding hearts are still just little drops right now…
Tiny bleeding heart buds

Last year:
bleeding heart

Are you experiencing a similar slowness of the season this year?

My profusely blooming rhodo-azalea bush seems to be the only one who didn’t get the message that spring is late this year.
rhodo-azalea

The bumble bees just love this shrub. I tried to get a photo for you of all the buzzing going on, but I was surprised at the agressiveness of the fuzzy buggers! A couple of them zoomed out and buzzed my head until I backed off when they thought I was getting a little too close for their comfort. Once this bush does its blooming, usually the hummingbirds are not too far behind. I wonder if I will be waiting for them this year too.

This picture is from 3 years ago, but it is still a favorite despite the graininess, and definitely something good that came to someone who waited.
hummingbird edit

Wait, wait! Don’t go yet! I have something funny to share with you.
My birthday card from my sister:
Comic "relief"

Was that worth waiting for? 😉

October 26, 2013

Hanging in There…or Feeling like the Flowers

Filed under: What's Blooming — Karma @ 9:14 am
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I feel a bit like some flowers in my yard these days. They are still hanging in there, trying to enjoy the last warm days of the year and battling the progressively chilly nights. I took these pictures Columbus Day weekend though, so I’m not sure they are all still out there! We’ve had a couple of lightly frosted mornings these weeks. (Gee that sort of sounds like a type of breakfast cereal, doesn’t it?)
mini rose
This is the last bloom on the mini rose the girls gave me for Mother’s Day. It is still hanging in this morning – I can see it out on the deck as I write this post. It is a good reminder to hang in there, and the fact that my girls chose it for me is good on those days when I find myself missing Meghan.

This post from Robin reminded me that I had spied a few morning glories hanging in there the other day. It has been many years since I’ve planted morning glories in that spot, so I was quite surprised to see them one morning when I jumped in the car. I went outside with my camera after reading Robin’s post to see what I could find. I didn’t have many blooms, but this is what I saw:morning glory closed
Still closed up, not ready to start the day -how I feel when I have to get up for work and it is still dark outside.

morning glory opening
Getting ready to open – at work enjoying my first cup of coffee!

morning glory open
Open – ready to face the day and whatever it throws at me!

I planted a few zinnias near the base of my deck this spring, and they are soldiering on, like I feel I must on some days when I would rather just curl up in a ball and let life do its thing without me for a while.
double zinnia

zinnia 1

Mums signal acceptance of the cool weather – the last bastions of the floral season. As we enter the second month of autumn, I must accept the fact that the warm days are waning and cold nights are here. The mums will make it until we have the coldest of nights…
mums 1

mums 2
…and I will hang in there with them, even as my summer soul must head into hibernation for a while!

June 1, 2013

Hearts ‘n’ Flowers

Wow, it is June already! This is going to be a crazy busy month around here with prom, graduation, recital, and the end of school all coming up. I was trying to think about a photo hunt for this month since everyone enjoys them so much, but I also didn’t know if I could really do it with everything else that is happening this month. I was on Facebook today when I found an idea.

Monthly-Photo-Challenge-I-Heart-Faces-1-Photo-30-Days

The fine ladies over at I Heart Faces posted this interesting photo challenge over on their page. If you click that link, you can read about all the different ways you can participate in their photo challenge. There is a great variety, and rules are pretty loosey-goosey: participate as much or as little as you like. Do it every day, once a week or whatever you’d like.

So here is what I am proposing to you: since the nice keepers of the web page said we could feel free to share their graphic so that lots of people could participate, I’m inviting you to play along with them and/or with me. Choose as many or as few of these words that you’d like to photograph. Make one big post or as many smaller posts as you would like, following the dates the ladies layed out or not, and leave me a link in the comments of this post. If you wish to participate with the I Heart Faces folks, check out the directions in the link above. I’ll make the deadline for posting links to my blog July 1st, in case you’d like to do the day-by-day challenge.

Playing along with the photos of the day, here’s a picture of me from a day when it was NOT 90 degrees outside like it is today:
highlights1
I have no idea how much I will keep up with this challenge myself – I’m going to try to do as many as possible, but I’m sure there will be some days when it just won’t happen.
I’ve also got some more flowers in bloom to share with you.
lily of the valley
Lily of the Valley
bearded iris
Bearded Iris
iris almost open
Nearly open iris
English daisy
English daisy
evening primrose
Evening Primrose
foxglove
Foxglove
I hope you’ll let me know what you think about the I Heart Faces photo challenge. Have fun!

May 7, 2013

Springtime, Lovely Springtime!

I love this time of year. This part of the world is coming alive with green grass and leaves and the bloomers of spring. We’ve had a string of 17 days in a row with no rain, and while I know we need the rain (coming soon according to the local forecast), I’ve even thoroughly been enjoying my rides to work in the morning: the sunshine at that time of day is gentle and beautiful and lights the flowering trees and greening lawns in a way that makes me remember to breathe deep and appreciate the moment.

When I walk out to my car, the air is perfumed with these:
lilac
Lilacs – mmmmm, is there a better spring time smell? And I’m going to have an abundant amount of blooms this year. The tops of my trees all look like this:
abundant lilac
They haven’t quite opened yet, that’s why the dark color, but they are beginning.

During all this lovely weather, I’ve been outside when time allows (mostly weekends) working on my yard. I did a lot of cleaning up and pruning during the April break from school. In addition to all the usual work, I made a decision to rip out a perennial bed that had not been looking overly healthy for the past few years:
periennial bed -before
I kept only what remains of my bearded irises, – they are yet to bloom this year and I don’t know how many blooms I will get – the bleeding heart
bleeding heart and my “crazy poppy”- click here for the story of that moniker.

On Saturday morning, I made a visit to my favorite local garden center, 16 Acres Gardens. (They are called that because they are in a part of Springfield known as “16 Acres” not because there are 16 acres of gardens)
garden center 1

garden center 2

It is still just a little too early around here for planting tender annuals and vegetables (unless you’re a bit of a daredevil and willing to watch the weather each night for frost warnings!) but I was more than ready to go spend the generous gift card I received from my dad for my birthday to replant that perennial bed. I came home with 9 new perennials of varying sizes and heights ranging in colors from pinks to purple to purplish-blue and planted them that afternoon:
perrenial bed - after
(I’m rather proud of myself for installing that new border around the bed too, even if it is a less than perfect circle!)

My latest-to-bloom-in-the-neighborhood daffodils are in full bloom now:
daffodil

daffodils

daffodil

as well as the giant rhodo-azalea:
full bloom rhodo-azaleas

I’ve seen two butterflies in the past few days – can the hummingbirds be far behind? I’m excited to hang up two new, unique hummingbird feeders I received for my birthday – I haven’t taken pictures of those yet but I’m sure I will do that soon.

I finally cleaned the vegetable garden patch of last year’s debris and removed the decrepit fence surrounding it. Next outdoor projects: put up a new fence and mulch my perennial bed. I’m also trying to grow some new grass in an area the dogs have ruined. There’s so much going on in the yard! But I do love this time of year!

December 31, 2012

My Favorite Photos of 2012

Since I started blogging in 2010, I’ve done a wrap-up of my favorite photos of the year.  They aren’t always my more “technically” good photos, but photos I’ve come to enjoy for one reason or another.  I believe these photos have all appeared on the blog already this year, but that is because I am always anxious to share my favorites with you!  The photos that follow are in chronological order approximately one for each month of the year, but in one case I didn’t find anything I liked all that much in a month (February) and for April and July I couldn’t make up my mind between two shots, so you get them both for a baker’s dozen total.

In January, I was finally able to get a close-up shot of a Mr. Cardinal that made me happy:
mrcardinal3

In March, I felt lucky to grab this shot of a soaring hawk, with feathers strongly defined:
hawk1

In April, I went on and on about one of my favorite vacations of all time, the cruise we took. Meghan and Sarah, first day on the ship and taken with my Blackberry, remains a favorite:
IMG-20120416-00079
There were so many beautiful sights from the cruise, but I wanted to share a shot that I love for its simplicity:
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The warm, turquoise Carribbean water brings me back to those precious days when there was little to worry about and happy memories were being made.

May brought me a picture of one of my favorite types of flowers, a bearded iris, that I was very pleased with how it came out. It was the header picture here on the blog until very recently:
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Ah, June! The end of the school year, the start of my favorite season. Yummy raspberries are a nice representation of the many good parts of summer.
fresh raspberries

July is the month when my butterfly bushes start going wild and bring many winged visitors. This monarch was one of my best butterfly shots this year:
King of butterflies

I just love this photo of Sarah from her birthday party. Her braces had been removed and her smile was big and genuine:
Sarah1

As part of a photo hunt that everyone really seemed to enjoy, the “Ends of the Earth”, I took this photo in August from our little mountain here in town:
mountain2

In September, my summer dreams faded away with the weather. This dahlia reminds me of the warmth of the afternoons that I continued to enjoy as long as I could:
Dahlias #2

October brought a blog-along walk over at Robin’s Life in the Bogs. I found myself doing some quiet contemplation while watching birds appear before my lens. I loved this sweet little chickadee:
chickadee

I was happily surprised to have the opportunity to photograph an eastern bluebird for the first time in November. It isn’t a wonderful photo, but I was thrilled with the chance to get this picture:
Eastern bluebird

How ironic that I spent December wishing for a gentle blanket of snow to take pretty pictures in and then ended up sharing this adventure with you just yesterday! (If you haven’t read it yet, go ahead, have a peek!) I still really like this picture of my new snowman ornaments, even if I could now do without the sentiment:
"Let it Snow" 2

Happy New Year everyone. I hope that 2013 brings you good health, and paraphrasing the words of a fellow blogger, enough of what you need most.

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