Tuesday, July 20, 2010

"They Do It With Mirrors!"

Summer is advancing.

It has been a curious one. Very warm and humid, yet, with very little rain.

     Summer has, also, been a bit off balance because of the many projects that we've had going, this year. They are too numerous to mention here. They, happily are getting ticked off, one by one. Last summer, I had been warned that it was the "year of the dirt". Indeed it was!!! It seemed like all twenty acres were torn up - definitely our yard was a complete wasteland.

     This year has been the "year of trying to put it all back together again". It has been the year of the weeds and rocks and hidden pitfalls in the lawn. A year of puppies and their enclosure ruining our lawn and keeping our front porch in a state of complete disaster. A year of trying to reclaim our home after the hectic previous spring. Hardest of all, I've had no garden because it cannot be put in until the completion of the stone wall.

     We still have no kitchen table (the puppies' crate takes up all of the room) and no place to sit or eat outside. (Don't worry, though, we're not eating on the floor - we do have a beautiful dining room.)  I cannot wait to regain some sense of normalcy!!! What pictures shall I show you? There is usually disaster lurking in the background of every one! So far, my photos have been accomplished with mirrors - angles, redirection and illusions.

I wonder how many of you remember this post.....

 Well, here are "the making of" photos.....

Oh, it's going to be soooo beautiful when it's all done! Can you just imagine what it will be like when there are raised vegetable beds down by the barns and hollyhocks and roses just outside these windows?

     Well, there is hope! The wall has been completed! Tom has added composted dirt from a lovely pile that he found hidden in weeds in the barnyard. He's weed whacked our lawn and evened out the ground and reseeded it. I will do a bit more soil amendment in August and, then, when it's a titch cooler, move what plants I have left from the old house. Finally! I must say that I have been living vicariously through all of your posts about your gardens and blooms and outdoor gatherings!

Just a note: for those of you who have been following along for a while, now, Tom is not Mr. Toad. I realized, after my Father's day post, that it was a bit nebulous who I was talking about. Going more from the Disney version of the characters, my own Dad is Mr. toad, I am Moley (with toadlike tendencies), my mother is McBadger and my husband, Tom, is the very responsible and upright Ratty. Well, my beloved Ratty has been extremely industrious. I just want you all to know how very impressed and grateful I am for my husbands stoic stubbornness and stick to it gumption. In a contest between a large boulder and him - the boulder will be moved!

 In the midst of all this are the puppies.

 We realized, after a few days of trying to come up with official names for them, that they're stuck with their original nick names; so, "Chubbs" and "Una" it is.

Chubbs was tentatively exploring the pond when Una came barreling into him and, into the black muck they both went!

Then, they both got to experience their first bath.

For Chubbs, "ignorance is carefree bliss"!


Chubb is playing "The Ghost and the Darkness". (Do you know of those famous African lions, now stuffed in the Field Museum in Chicago?)

 Proving that Chubbs is only a little bit fat but, really, he's "foofy"!

Fresh meetings after the ordeal, and.....

..... a cookie!

 (Since this photo, I've started thinking about the two of them as "Beauty and the Beast".)


 As for the rest of the summer? Well, I do have a meadow full of flowers,......


 ......there has been plenty of local fresh fruit and berries and vegetables at the store,.....

..... we've finally had a few smatterings of thunder storms,.....

..... and the summer is mellowing and cooling.


Katy Noelle


  1. Katy,

    I must admit I am completely in love with Chubbs, and so happy that you have shared these adorable pictures.

    As for your beloved Ratty, he reminds me of my own industrious husband who is always working on a project ... or two, yet always finds time for his girls.

    We are enduring hot and humid, rainless days as well. Looking forward to autumn!

  2. Hi Katy Noelle,

    I have missed so much of your posts and beautiful pictures. I really have to catch up! I have just enjoyed your photos taken from the dam with the mountains in the background. I have said it before, but you have so much beauty around you! When I look out of my window the thing I see is the appartment buildings surrounding ours (but I also see the beautiful gardens in between) :-)!

    I am glad you are more optimistic about your house and garden! It sounds like there is a lot of work in progress. That meadow with wildflowers is so pretty! It reminds me a bit of 'the little house on the prairie':-)!

    Thank your for the explanation of mr Toad. I think I got it wrong as well. Sorry!

    Love the photo's of the puppies. They have grown so much!!!

    Lieve groetjes van Madelief

  3. Dear Katy, As always a wonderfully joyous posting with a rattling pace and so many glorious glimpses into your life.

    I am amazed at how much the puppies have grown since my last visit and can well believe that they now dominate every room in the house and undermine every effort to regain control of the garden, especially the lawn.

    Thank you for the Wind in the Willows explanations. I am sure that I got everything the wrong way round on Father's Day and now I am left wondering how you came to be Moley.....

    The meadow is beautiful with its carpet, I imagine, of flax and the Silver Birch, one of my favourite trees, giving a cool elegance with their wonderfully white bark.

    Do not worry about putting everything 'back together again' a natural order of things will emerge in time. Meanwhile, enjoy!

  4. Oh my you have been busy...very busy! Can't wait to see the pictures when it is finished! The puppies are adorable :)

  5. Dear Katy Noelle!!!!

    Just scrolling down...have seen SO much fun here!!!! - will come back, sorry - in holiday-last-minute-super-stress.....:( THANK you for all your comments!!! Will - hopefully - get the internet working in France, so WILL get back on all of them. Just a quick one, before I forget: You have THE most fantastic on-line store in the States...it is called Bake Me Pretty, just google it - they have SO much fun stuff!!!! Just thought I'd tell you quickly!!!!!

    See you soon!


  6. What a fun post! So many beautiful photos and what adorable pups.

  7. Good Morning, my Love-

    now I have time to read your post with the necessary calm and attention ☺

    Which photo is the best- I can´t decide- all are so wonderful and taken with your loving eyes...

    At first- I love those chrystal chandeliers! It looks so beautiful in front of the window and yes- I can imagine, when your roses are there - it´s like heaven...

    Then- the sweet puppies ☺ Oh yes- I know that- you have a day full of work- you are tired- you need a pause and then you have to clean this sweet, little pig- sweet- but you feel despair in yourself ;-))
    I like the bath outside- it looks like one of those horses drink in a western- outside the bar *hihi Really sweet!
    Oh- and my Ginger is lying there - tired and with wet paws from the garden- fresh washed from Mummy ☺ So, I know this feeling- dirty dog!

    Yes- and the photos of the grain and grasses and flowers- beautiful- I like them so much.

    Very impressing is the photo of the thunder sky- really great- I love such skies!

    So, Dear- take care for you and don´t forget pauses- at your wonderful looking table- with a cup of coffee, that gives you power back!

    Love and kisses- Ines

  8. Those puppies are just too adorable! Puppies and mud ~ yup ~ they go together! :)

    xo Catherine

  9. My God ! you must have a lot of work with this family of yours and those cute puppies. And fun also, I am sure.

    Keep in mind when we want something hard, we will have it because it is our wish. So you will have soon roses and hollyhocks to admire from your window.
    Have a nice week.

  10. Katie,

    I'm sure your patience will pay off and those hollyhocks and roses, and the vegetable garden will be showing up here on your blog and on your property before you know it.
    Chubbs is so cute!
    As for the meadow of flowers...I could sit amongst that all day. It's beautiful!



  11. Katy, I've been computerless so I'm glad I found this post!

    Those dogs are the cutest things Evuh!

    And I howled (no pun intended) when I read this:

    "So far, my photos have been accomplished with mirrors - angles, redirection and illusions."

    I think we all understand that. All of us who are normal. ;-)



  12. You should see the smoke and mirrors I use in some of my shots. ;-)

  13. Oh oh how I love your part of the world, Katy Noelle. The wildflowers, the mountains, your house. Would LOVE to sit down at that gorgeous table and have a little chit chat with you.
    A big hug for the sweet little fluffy friend!
    Have a lovely merry happy weekend. xx

  14. Dear Katy Noelle!!!!

    You DO make me giggle!!!!! LOVED those pictures with the crystal candle holder :) and the digger/tractor (?)....SO funny, and so true!!!! I am also glad that the photos we show don't show the photographer....sometimes . you see something, and it has to be taken there and then....I have taken pictures in my nighty or with messy hair - and that are just the harmless ones :)!

    And OF COURSe absolutely ADORE the puppy bath thime pictures -it is all puppy, puppy, puppy in my world at the moment!!!! They are just adorable - SO cute!!!!! I have got LOTS to learn, I think!!!!! (Never had dogs, Mike grew up with Grate Danes, but me? I had a guinea pig called Mario - and coming to think of it...colour-wise, it had the same colours the littel JAck Russell lady has- that is amazing!!! I JUST thought of that! For some reason that has really pleased me now.... strange me!)

    And then your summer pictures - just lovely! The atmosphere REALLY comes over!!!!! Summer seems to have stopped here again -oh well, in France soon, so will get my share of summer sunshine!!!

    AHve a lovely day!!!


    OH -THANK you SO much for all your sweet comments!!!!!!


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