Sunday, August 27, 2017

Red Tulip Project

After 15 years the bed of bright red tulips has dwindeld to just 3 or 4 blossoms and since I don't have the money to buy more and replant I've opted to round up all of the pictures that I've taken over those years and start a new collection of paintings of them.

Here's the first of the paintings to come from this series of photos.

And here it is again as I added more leaves to it.

This is the first of this series which I will be putting up on products for sale on Zazzle. After spending some time "playing" with this image I couldn't resist adding a few more leaves.

I'm really happy with it now.

This was my next attempt at doing something interesting with those tulips.


It's certainly brightening up the living room as I'm making just one more attempt at painting those tulips.

I decided to do a few drawings while I was writing a few people about the new paintings. I did them on the envelopes to brighten up the mail for all of us.

Here are the envelopes all together.

After a few drawings I went back to my paints.

I wasn't quite sure what to do with the background on this one so I tried just about every color in my paintbox.

I suppose this painting would be fine as it was at this point so I lived with it for a couple of days before deciding to make it part of a set with the last painting.

All it took to make it work was to change the background.

I will be using these paintings as part of a set of note cards on Zazzle.


Friday, August 18, 2017

The Garden on the Menu

The steam made this photo a but difficult to catch. I should have taken pictures of the chamomile flowers before I brewed the tea.

Most days we toss a few pea pods or tomatoes into a salad.

Other days we make bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwiches. The summer has gone buy so fast that we really haven't had time to explore recipes and try other things.

I like to experiment with fresh teas, This time I added a strawberry blossom to the chamomile tea and loved both the scent and the flavor as well as the fact that the fresh flowers made it pretty.

Our radishes failed again this year but the radishes and potatoes look promising. Time will tell.

We make a lot of things with new potatoes. I seem to spend more time eating them than photographing them.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Building a low cost Butterfly Habitat for Raising Caterpillars

This habitat at 3 ft wide, 3 ft tall and 1ft. wide is much larger than most people would need but there had been a mix up with our last caterpillar order and we ended with 4 times as many as we normally get and we were in a hurry to find a home for them all. 

We bought 2, 1x4,s 6ft long and 1 , 2x12 6ft long at a total cost of $10.14

We had a roll of window screen on hand and salvaged an old door so I'm not sure what those would cost you.

Construction was easy, we simply cut all of the boards in half. The wide boards became the top and bottom and the narrow ones for the upright corners.

Once we got everything together we had to salvage one more board to frame the door in with.

Here's the finished product. After we've raised and released all of these we'll be adding casters to what is the top here. That will give us a freestanding unit that can be rolled wherever we need it. The reason we'll turn it over is so that the door will be on top and easy for me to reach from my wheelchair.

We are still waiting for most of the butterflies to come out.

Here is the first one to appear.

I've got food, flowers and nectar in the habitat for them.

While they were in the house a couple of butterflies got out and lived with us for a while. One lived in the window next to my work table but didn't show any interest in going outside even though we tried it get it to go.

It stayed about 4 days and then Doug reached for it and it let him carry it outside where it sat on his hand and enjoyed the sun before it flew high up toward our big pine trees.

A few days later we decided to take the habitat outside and see if any of the others were ready to leave.

On the day we did that another one flew around the house and Doug gave it a ride outdoors.

The Butterflies get moved out into the garden

Even though we left the door of the habitat open but not all of the butterflies were in a hurry to leave.

This one sat on that flower for quite a long time before finally flying away.

What a great way to spend the day.