Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The Living is Easy?

It's been a busy couple of days. Last night my daughter Vanessa, her boyfriend Chris, and our son Casey came over for dinner. Kim and I decided to eat "en plein air." (Can you tell my French lessons continue?)

So we dragged the dining room table outside in the shade. Since the dinner was for Vanessa's birthday I made bruschetta (her favorite appetizer), Calabrese pork and fennel ragu with pasta, fruit salad, and chocolate cheesecake for dessert.

This morning after breakfast at Goldys we decided to ride our bikes to the Idaho Botanical Garden. The garden is about 4 miles from our house so it was a decent bike trip for us.

There is always something new to see at the Garden. This is the first time we've seen Amber Conger's metal sculptures. We were very impressed.

There is some sculpture in the Garden I'm not fond of but I loved Amber's artwork.

Also at the Botanical Garden, wouldn't you have fun with this hollowed log? It's big but I'd find room somewhere for this.

Cool plants...

And what great use of a fountain - fill it with succulents.

And what do you think? Would you put purple pillars in your garden?

I think I would.

Back to our garden......

We have Monarda 'Pink Lace' blooming.

Florida Sieboldii is also looking great.

Another clematis, Comtesse de Bouchard, is blooming in the Moongarden,

along with our Heritage rose.

The Nicolas daylilies are blooming with lychnis coronaria. This photo shows just one Rose Campion, but you know, if you have one of these plants, you have ONE TON of these plants.

Kim harvested the first carrots from the cold frame, and they taste good! We're excited since this is the first time we've actually tried growing veggies in there. We've also harvested lots of lettuce and chard from the cold frame.

Also, our new kitten, Jessie, has been busy meeting the "girls." Here he is, nose to nose (nose to beak?) with Tootsie. (Jessie is hard to see, but he's in the lower right corner, just peaking out.)

So far, so good.

And finally, Tootsie looks like she's posing for the cover of Horticulture magazine.
(Don't think she'll make it, but she's giving it a good try.)

Summer has been great for us so far. How has yours been?


Bek said...

Wow! Beautiful flowers! And I just love the dinner idea in the garden. It looks SO beautiful in that surrounding.

Randy Emmitt said...


First carrot harvest, yes! We have maybe one batch like that left of carrots, so yummy. I too liked the purple posts. If we'd had dinner outside it would have been hot, at 5pm it was 101 degrees here yesterday!!

Goneferalinidaho said...

Your garden looks wonderful. I love the shot of the kitty and hen.

Rosemary said...

Summer has been good here if a little dry , no a lot dry! Wonderful dinner in the garden, picture perfect! Your garden looks so good with lots blooming. Will pass on the purple posts and the insect eating plants.. the metal sculptures adds so much interest to a garden that is a consideration .

Janet, The Queen of Seaford said...

Love the al'fresco dining. Your garden is a wonderful setting for a great sounding meal.
Love those purple pillars...what fun to have that in your garden.

Southern Lady said...

Sounds like you have had a busy summer. I love the first picture of your dinner in the garden...just lovely. Eating outside is alway a treat for me. Your little chicken is a beauty. She deserves to be on the cover of a magazine! Carla

Unknown said...

I'm glad you like the sculptures, lol :) They were installed this spring & I'm so happy with the way they look in the garden... BTW: I've been following your blog for some time now; love the chickens!


Anonymous said...

Your dining looks divine! One of my favorite things about summer...Your garden is looking amazing too. I love the heritage rose, clematis and monarda. Your photos are beautiful and your plants are so lush - would never know they are in the dry west! :) Yes, I would add purple pillars, I like those at the garden!

Kathleen said...

I would most definitely put purple pillars in my garden!!! Fantastic idea!
Also, your menu and dining area are amazing. What a great birthday for your daughter. What are the tall spikes of flowers blooming on the left of the photo?? Larkspur? Delphiniums?? They look gorgeous.
I love that last photo too. It does look like Tootsie is on the cover! Good composition Victoria. :-)
It's encouraging to know dogs, cats and chickens can all co-exist. Maybe someday I'll get to try it out myself. Congrats on your new kitten ~ she looks very cute. Your garden looks great too.
ps Our summer is going okay ~ very wet and cool which I know is good for everything but I prefer hotter!! Never happy, right?!!!

Cynthia said...

Beautiful shots of your garden as usual. :) I love the shot of your dinner in the garden. Looks very cozy. And it does look like Tootsie is posing for the magazine cover. Too cute!

Laura Paine Carr said...

Love love love the carrots! Actually, every photo is a treat, a savory moment. Aren't the hens funny? They love to do whatever you are doing, like reading a magazine. Cracks me up.

Our summer has been cool, but we all kinda know that within a month (Aug-Oct) most likely will be toasty-hot. Guess that's why there's so many grapes around here.



Your blog is so fun to read. I love your "en plein air" shot. Love the fountain with succulents. Those purple pillars are to die for. Your flowers are gorgeous. C. florida sieboldii is the one clemmie I don't have but still want. Jessie is a cutie pie. Tootsie is a regal cover girl! Great post!

Pat said...

Looks and sounds like a grand dinner.
Loving the Monarda and the garden tour.
I'm I imagining things or is hubby getting younger looking ?

Jennifer@threedogsinagarden said...

I would have liked to come for dinner. Fennel Ragu sounds interesting and chocolate cheesecake for dessert. Yum! I especially liked the metal sculpture with the wheel. I am not sure if Tootsie is really interesting in posing. She looks like she might want to do a little light reading. Your blooms are looking beautiful!

capucyne said...

Vous avez un jardin idyllique pour manger dehors, et j'aime beaucoup la pose de votre poule en couverture de magazine!!!

Becca's Dirt said...

I enjoyed the tour. I'm loving the clematis - stunning blooms. Awesome rose too. Wish I was sitting at the table with you in the pretty gardens. The photo is nice with the flowers in the foreground.

Capucyne said...

Une visite dans votre paradis!

Barbarapc said...

I'd wished I could have joined you for dinner, the menu sounded wonderful. There's nothing lovelier than dining in the garden en famille. Can't think of a better cover subject than Tootsie - very photogenic. Judging from your blooms we're about at the same stage of summer and it has indeed been lovely.

garden girl said...

Glad you're having a great summer! Love the sculptures, especially the one with the wheel. I love old rusty stuff, and love seeing it become sculpture.

Your flowers are beautiful. Dining outdoors amongst them looks delightful.

Our summer's been been very nice too, although we could have done without those 100+ degree temps last week. Thankfully, at least for now, they're history.