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Posts Tagged ‘Jean Nitzel’

Wednesday, 20 November, 2013

The morning was so cold that I was glad we were starting with a project other than bulbs:  picking up a trailer load of cow fiber.  At our post office stop, I noticed a cat face on a pumpkin at the house next door.  I think it is new.  It must be a Thanksgiving rather than a Halloween pumpkin.

still seasonal

still seasonal

At the Planter Box around 11:30 AM, we saw evidence of the cold.

pond

Raymond loaded us up with four Bobcat scoops of dairy manure, carefully maneuvering around our small and rather fragile trailer.

incoming

incoming

Allan scraped the pile level with each scoop.

leveling off

leveling off

The sun, while it did provide welcome warmth, glared in an irksome and blinding way all day long from its uncomfortably low wintry angle.

scoop number four

scoop number four

getting the last precious bit of cow poo out of the scoop

getting the last precious bit of cow poo out of the scoop

the beautiful pile of beautiful dairy manure

the beautiful pile of beautiful washed dairy manure

Back to Long Beach:  At the World Kite Museum on Sid Snyder Drive in Long Beach, we planted Narcissi, Alliums christophii and schubertii, species Crocus and Iris reticulata.  I had been afraid the ground would be frozen.  It was stiff, but diggable.  The nice layer of mulch on top will keep the bulbs snug.

mulch

It is a small patch of garden for such a big building.

in context

in context

Brainstorm:  The strip of lawn along the sidewalk should be removed all the way along where the Hebes are planted.  I have thought this before.  Perhaps, if we can get the go ahead, we will do that in February.

That grass needs digging out!

That grass needs digging out!

There is also a ridiculous spot inside the Escallonias that needs to be newspapered and then mulched to save someone from having to try to get a mower or strimmer into there.

an unfortunate grassy patch

an unfortunate grassy patch

From the Kite Museum, we went back to Diane’s garden and laid mulch all down the bed where we had planted bulbs yesterday.

during, and after

during, and after

deliciously fluffy now

deliciously fluffy now

We had enough mulch for the blueberry patch but not enough for a small bed against the northeast corner of the house, an area where extra plants get popped in.

Oops!

Oops!

I could get free horse manure from right next door at the Red Barn just for this spot, even though I do find horse manure to be horribly weedy.

The Cow Fiber we had used at the Kite Museum would have been the perfect amount for this spot, dag nab it.

Surprised that it was just a bit past one o ‘clock—How had we gotten so much done in two hours??—we went back to The Planter Box for another load.

The difficult to work in angle of the sun made pots of Bright Lights Swiss Chard live up to their name.

Bright Lights Swiss Chard

Bright Lights Swiss Chard

as did Heather 'Wickwar Flame'

as did Heather ‘Wickwar Flame’

ornamental cabbages for sale

ornamental cabbages for sale

I wandered to the back of the nursery because the reflections in the big pond had caught my eye.

pond

trunks

sketchy

sketchy

We drove all the way to The Wiegardt Gallery simply because it would be such a satisfying mulching job to accomplish.

along the front of the gallery

along the front of the gallery

newly cleared beds, "bulbed" last week

recently cleared (of Geranium ‘A.T. Johnson) beds, “bulbed” last week, mulched today

The sun finally went down behind some trees, reducing some of the glare.

sun

Even though it was barely three o’clock, the temperature began to drop.

We could not bear to quit work quite this early in the day, even though I had recently checked my email and learned that the 30% off final end of season bulb sale had begun on the Van Engelen website!

So we went to Jo’s and did some pulling of cosmos.

before and after

before and after

I can see Joe got tired of waiting for us and cleaned out her own window boxes.  She likes annuals to be removed and perennials cut all the way down in fall.  We have a long way to go on this garden clean up.  Today we only lasted an hour because our hands got so cold, the sun was setting, and the bulb sale was on my mind.

I pulled the last of the Salvia viridis

I pulled the last of the Salvia viridis

many weeds await our return in slightly warmer weather

many weeds await our return in slightly warmer weather

birds on one of Jo's feeders

birds on one of Jo’s feeders

We rushed home, as we would need to go out again at five, and I placed a quick end of season sale for my garden:

bulb order

I will be very curious about whether or not they will ship the Alliums.  The catalog says they won’t, but I have heard they DO ship them to the Seattle area.  This is the first year there has been a restriction of Alliums shipped to Washington.  I have also heard that Western Washington state Costcos and other stores have had Alliums for sale.  I did not even really mean to order any.  My fingers just had to click on my favourite Allium at 20% off, and I did not realize what I had done till the order was finalized.  Our area has no commercial onion crop, so perhaps that is why the company is selectively shipping Alliums.

At a little after five, we were back out for an art gallery opening at The Cove Restaurant featuring the art of our friend Jean Nitzel of The Picture Attic in Long Beach.  As the event was so successful and crowded, we toured the paintings but did not linger.

a happy crowd

a happy crowd at jean’s art opening

This little bird:  sold.

This little bird: sold.  Photo by Robbie Richeson

Yesterday at the sushi benefit, landscaper Ed Strange had told us about a wonderful new Mexican dinner night on Wednesdays at The Lightship Restaurant and we wanted to try it out.  We suspected Ed would be there, and he was indeed.

Our Ed Strange

Our Ed Strange

Ed wants to get the word out about this excellent weekly dinner so that it is successful and stays with us.  Here we go:

Mexican Fiesta night has not been "discovered" yet.

Mexican Fiesta night has not been “discovered” yet.

As Ed had promised, the chef made fresh guacamole at tableside.

fresh quacamole for each table

fresh quacamole for each table

the ingredients

the ingredients

guac

guac

couldn't be fresher

couldn’t be fresher

All of the food was delicious…prepared from the chefs’ grandmas’ traditional recipes, Ed told us.

food

chicken molé and steak fajitas

We will return next week to try other items on the Wednesday night Mexican dinner menu.

On the way home, we saw that the lights on the Long Beach clam and world’s largest frying pan have been lit.

holiday lights

holiday lights

Especially exciting to me are the ground level lights to the left.  They mean the underground wiring and lighting are done in that garden bed, and tomorrow we can finish planting the Long Beach bulbs.

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Saturday, 2 November, 2013

The predicted storm arrived around 3 AM with much bluster.  That’s only about an hour after my usual falling asleep time so I barely noticed till around 8 A.M. when loud gusts rattled a tarp in the work storage area outside my window.  I worried briefly about whether or not the power would go out and fell back asleep.

Fortunately, despite a day full of wild wind, the power did stay on for the two Ilwaco events I had been eagerly anticipating.

I had just signed up for the National Blog Posting Month on blogher.com and then realized that November 2 might be my biggest writing challenge.  Since I am running two days behind, the blog post scheduled was Halloween, which is kind of a big deal here and had generated lots of photos.   Would I fail to post on the very first day of signing onto the challenge after having missed very few days in the last several months?  No indeed.   I began my Halloween post before the first event and got about one third of the way through the photo story before heading one block down to Time Enough Books for the 1 PM book signing.

There, in the foyer, stood my dear friend (and Music in the Gardens tour organizer) Nancy Allen, frying up a batch of crab cakes.

our dear Nancy

our dear Nancy

Her spouse, Phil, had harvested the crabs that very morning off the North Jetty.

Phil, forager and gather extraordinaire

Phil, forager and gatherer extraordinaire

I heard someone comment jokingly to Nancy “They don’t like you much!” because she was relegated to the foyer.   She explained that the smell of cooking crab could not be allowed to mingle with the books in the store.

The event, a signing of the book Soup Night, by Maggie Stuckey, had drawn a good crowd.

in the bookstore

in the bookstore

Maggie Stuckey gave a brief talk about how she had found a soup night group in her Portland, Oregon neighbourhood.

I do think this photo of her is cute!

I do think this photo of her is cute!

She described seeing neighbours walking up to a house, each carrying a soup bowl and a spoon; this saves on clean up for the evening’s host.  She became inspired to write about how Soup Night groups create a sense of community.

Maggie Stuckey describing Soup Night

Maggie Stuckey describing Soup Night

Maggie researched Soup Night groups, finding them throughout the USA, and collected stories and recipes for the book.  Here in our Long Beach Peninsula area was the largest number geographically of recipe contributors.

The rest of the event was all about mingling and eating, just like a real Soup Night would be.  The soup samples were offered in bowls full, not just tiny tastes as I had expected, and two salads and the crab cakes were also part of the scrumptious fare.  Charmingly, the recipe contributors signed the books, each on the page on which their recipe appeared.

Nancy signs for her crab cakes.

Nancy signs for her crab cakes.

crab

Our friend, client, and realtor Cheri Diehl waits to get Nancy to sign.

Our friend, client, and realtor Cheri Diehl waits to get Nancy to sign.

Virginia Tackett signed the page for “Not Your Grandmother’s Green Pea Salad”.  Her name tag had the page number on which her recipe appeared, as did the tags for each of the recipe contributors.

Virginia Tackett

Virginia Tackett

signing

signing

My favourite soup was a creamed garlic and onion creation by Dennis Battles.

Dennis signs for Roasted Onion and Garlic Cream Soup

Dennis signs for Roasted Onion and Garlic Cream Soup

Local author Sydney Stevens signed for her recipe Southwestern Lentil Soup.  Delicious.  We spoke briefly about blogging when I told her I intend to read her Oysterville Daybook, about life in the small Peninsula town of Oysterville,  from the beginning to the present day this winter.  She asked me to be on the watch for any subject she might repeat herself on.  I agreed it is very hard to not repeat oneself.  For me, I am sure there is much repetition over the years as our work goes round the year in repeating cycles.

Kennette Osborn from Ocean Park was the first to sign her soup recipe (page 104), before i got the idea of photographing the signers.  Her “Surprise Beef Stew” had a wonderful twist:  It is served with cool crispy coleslaw stirred in right before eating.

I don’t want to give away that I bought two books, as someone might guess it is her Christmas present…but I did.

me and bookstore owner Karla

me and bookstore owner Karla

a warm and happy event

a warm and happy event

I hope someone in Ilwaco is inspired to start a soup night.  Preferably someone who does not live in a big fancy intimidating house (not that our town has many of those).  Oh, maybe someone on the flatlands so we could walk there!  But it would not be me;  I am not much of one for hosting inside my house as am generally too busy outside (or blogging) to make it tidy enough inside.

As we left for our next of three events, we saw a sign of the season on the OldeBob’s readerboard:

It is crab time.

It is crab time.

Over along the meader line (the variable line that divides the city from the port parking lot), a murder of crows gathered on the rough grass….

crows

and then took to the trees.

trees

We drove straight on up to Long Beach to an art show opening…

poster

where we were pleased to find Kent and Betsy Toepfer, along with Jan Richardson of Windy Meadows Pottery.  The Toepfer garden was one of my favourites on a past Music in the Gardens tour.

Jan, Allan, and the Toepfers

Jan, Allan, and the Toepfers

We had a good visit and discussed, but did not solve, some of the world’s problems.

love Betsy colourful art and Jan's little house

love Betsy’s colourful art and Jan’s little house

love the two little pigs by our friend Jean Nitzel!

love the two little pigs by our friend Jean Nitzel!

Later we learned that our neighbour (four doors down!) Judy had bought one of Jean’s “little birdie” paintings.

Back home again, we checked out how well the cosmos in the boatyard garden had held up to the wind.

Cosmos holding up very well indeed.

Cosmos holding up very well indeed.

I had another hour or so to peck away at my blog entry about Halloween, and then we were off to the 6X6 art auction at the Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum.

6

a full house

a full house

I started the event in more of a hungry than a photographic mood, so neglected to be able to show you the tasty buffet.  Then, with loaded plate, I stood around feeling shy as most of the seats were full.  We finally pulled up an extra chair and joined Kelly of Blue Crab Graphics and local potter Karen Brownlee and her spouse, squeezing five into a table for four (at 6X6).

I attended for the amusing repartee of the auctioneers and to support the museum and also with determination to acquire another piece by Wendy Murry.  It was in the silent rather than the live auction; that could mean I would get it cheaper without the frenzy of bidding.  And yet it is fun to bid with a raised, numbered paddle, and I was sorry to not have the opportunity.

the silent auction, one of four tables

the silent auction, one of four tables

I made a low bid, and soon saw a slightly higher one, then bid again.  Then someone who I knew could far outbid me bid again.  What to do?  I wanted it very badly.  Last year I had gotten this glorious three dimensional piece by Wendy:

Sideshow by the Seashore by Wendy Murry

(that’s Wendy MURRY!)  and three years ago I got this one:

wendy

So before I could be outbid this time I decided to go for the new-this-year ‘buy it now” option.

bought it now

bought it now

Wendy's art, 2013

Wendy’s art, 2013…it is my preccciiioussss!

It is all for a great cause and I have never tired of the pleasure of owning the other two creations by Wendy.   I will economize in some other way.  Now I could relax and enjoy the live auction without having to keep crossing the room to check on my bid.  (For most of my life, I had so little disposable income that it was not until attending this event for the first time in 2010 that I even knew the difference between a live and silent auction!)

the live auction items

the live auction items

Our friend Don Nisbett’s 6×6 piece was the first in the live auction.  Bruce Peterson is the witty auctioneer and a security person protects the valuable art.

don

Crabby Before Wine by Don Nisbett

Cartwheel Kids by Normandie Hand

Cartwheel Kids by Normandie Hand; museum director Betsy Millard at right

Karla from Time Enough Books took bids on the “international phone”.  The presence of the sock monkey will become clear later.  Or maybe not.

Karla on the international phone line

Karla on the international phone line

security

security

Pepper by Renee O Connor

Pepper by Renee O’ Connor

I have bid on and miraculously won two beautiful flower tiles by Renee in previous years; the dog, while attractive, I could resist.

the poppy tile from 2011!

the poppy tile that I won in 2011!

Gray's River Road by Wally Mann

Gray’s River Road by Wally Mann

After all these beautiful small pieces had been auctioned for between $150 and $300 or so dollars each, the annual Sock Monkey picture came up on the screen.

sock monkey on a train

Night Train by Leslie Hall Lipe

All I have been able to figure out over the years is that Karla adores sock monkeys, as does her sister.  Leslie Hall Lipe does a piece of sock monkey art each year.  (This one, with the train, is actually my favourite.)  The bidding war between Karla and her sister immediately became fierce.

Night Train

Night Train

the 2012 monkey

the 2012 monkey

and the 2011 monkey

and the 2011 monkey

Karla fights for the monkey.

Karla fights for the monkey.

another bid

another bid by Karla and her monkey friend

But her sister won as the monkey art went for $750 dollars.

the crowd applauds the winner

the crowd applauds the winner

It’s just another example of the mysterious ways of the town of Ilwaco.

The silent auction continued for another half an hour.  One of my favourite pieces was two ravens by Jean Nitzel (of The Picture Attic shop in Long Beach):

ravens

It was, or they were, won by Kelly of Blue Crab Graphics.  When I saw Kelly bid on Jean’s art, I backed off and focused my attention on winning Kelly’s own piece. ( I will show it in a later post; since I was the one who acquired it, Kelly took her piece home to do a small tweak on the design that had been bothering her!  That’s the kind of connection with the artist that comes with living a few blocks apart.)   What a satisfying feeling of having supported our museum and been part of the Peninsula community all day long.   And I got home in time to finish and upload my Halloween blog post.  Sunday, rain or shine, we really must get back to work!

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