Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Few Fall Favorites

 One of my favorite things about Fall is attending the historic homes tour in a nearby town.  Through the years we have had the chance to step inside many different homes that have been lovingly restored to their original beauty along with enjoying the history behind the house.  This year we even toured the former home of Elizabeth Dole's grandparents.
Unfortunately we were not allowed to take photos inside the homes, but I did take a few as we walked from house to house.
I thought this fall display was a warm welcome.
This house wasn't on the tour this year, although we did tour it in years past.
 Let me just zoom out so that you can see it better.

Pretty, isn't it.
That big wraparound porch looks like the ideal spot to enjoy the sights and sounds of an autumn afternoon.

As we waited in line to enter one of the houses, this caught my eye.
A pretty and interesting combination of colors and textures.

One of the houses sat on a corner lot.
The homeowner built this little house to resemble his own.

A cute little neighborhood lending library.
Have you ever seen this before?
I hadn't, but it sure seems like a neat idea.

 It just wouldn't seem like fall without a trip to the pumpkin patch.
This year it was even nicer to enjoy it with my favorite little pumpkin.

Of course these cooler days make the warmth of the kitchen even more appealing.  
I don't very often think to roast a whole chicken.
I'm glad I had that thought last night as it smelled so good as it baked and the meat just fell off the bones... just the way I like it.
Comfort food at it's best.

Susan Branch recently shared a recipe on her well-loved blog for a broccoli kale slaw.  The orange dressing and cranberries made it an ideal accompaniment to our roast chicken fall comfort food dinner.
Delicious and nutritious (as my mother often said :).

Just a few of my fall favorites here tonight.
There is one more that I can't really show you, although I'm sure you can conjure it up for yourselves... I just got up to let Peanut out and there it was... woodsmoke in the cool crisp air.  

Care to share any of your fall favorites?


Friday, October 17, 2014

A Patriotic Garden Palette

As I pulled into the driveway this afternoon I couldn't help but notice a patriotic little combo residing in my garden.

 Red Pentas

 The penta flowers are one of the greatest annuals for our southern climate.  They need zero care.  I've done nothing to them since I planted them last spring and they have filled in and grown super tall.  They were a source of constant color with no deadheading required.  As an extra bonus they attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
Three cheers for pentas !!!

White Camellias

The beautiful camellia sasanquas are a fall blooming plant.
Soon enough the garden flowers will be lost to frost.  Boo Hoo!
That thought makes the camellias even more welcome and appreciated.

  Heavenly Blue Morning Glory

It seems a year doesn't go by where I don't have to sneak one of these into a post.  What can I say.... love that gorgeous shade of blue.  In fact, it reminds me of...

Wasn't it nice of that jet to fly by as I pointed my camera at the blue sky?
We're in for a picture perfect weekend here.
Hoping for a lot of outside time and time to do some blog hopping.
I've fallen way behind in that department and I need to see what you've all been up to.

In the meantime, I wish you blue skies and happiness this weekend.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Look Who's Coming to Lunch

 We are officially working from home now and I have decided that it does have some definite perks... like enjoying lunch on the patio.
On this lovely autumn afternoon, we did just that and just as I was about to bite into my BLT, Brett said "look who's coming to join us."

 While we do enjoy a nice variety of birds in our backyard, I can't say we've ever watched one quite this tall before.

 He seemed completely unfazed by us and continued to mosey on over as if we'd invited him to lunch.

 As we watched him gazing into the pond, we had an instant light bulb moment.  The mystery of the disappearing goldfish had just been solved.
A while ago Brett added twelve goldfish to the pond.
We had read that it was best to not feed them as this would make them an easier target for prey if they spent a lot of time near the top of the water waiting for food.  So, we have not fed them.  Each day when we would go out to check on them we would do a head count.  At last count there were only 8.  We didn't think they were being preyed upon as we never saw any evidence.
We wondered if, perhaps, they were just hiding.
Looks like we will have to wonder no more.
Once we realized that this large bird really was coming for lunch, we started yelling and clapping to scare him away.

He wasn't too scared by our noise, but did spread his wings and make a half-hearted attempt to fly away.
Once we went back to eating he started moseying back over.
It was clearly time for the next line of defense.

 She may be small, but her yapping goes a long way.
We opened the door and let her have a shot at scaring Wilt the Stilt away.

She scared him right up to the highest peak of the house where he, no doubt, remained until we finished lunch and went back to work.