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Posts Tagged ‘Olde Towne Trading Post Café’

Saturday, 14 December, 2013

After rising at the shocking early hour of 10:20 AM, I had time to go to the Saturday Christmas Market before a coffee date.  First, I stopped at Time Enough Books to deliver the last gardening bill of the season.

Time Enough Books

Time Enough Books

Why does this sticker that they have for sale remind me of the times when Allan and I have tried to hire help for our business?

coworkers

Next door at the Christmas market, I resolved to buy a glowing glass brick, but with not quite enough sleep, I forgot to acquire it!

glass brick with lights inside

glass brick with lights inside

Allan joined me and we even had time to buy our Christmas Tree from the Ilwaco High School Band tree sale…

more on this later!

more on this later!

And then we met our dear friend Patt at Olde Towne Café; she was in town briefly to get set up for a dog sitting job later this month (for our client and friend Lisa and our dog friend Maddy!)  Her car was already there.  Over a year ago when I first saw her marriage equality bumper stickers, I just knew we would be friends.

clearly someone sympatico

clearly someone sympatico

Patt who, sadly for us, has moved away and is now working at a Gemology business!

Patt who, sadly for us, has moved away and is now working at a Gemology business!

After Patt departed to meet Lisa, Allan and I took a break from staycation to do some necessary work caused by last week’s freezing weather.  (But first, we popped back to the market so I could buy that glass brick!)

Christmas market entrance...soon to be a fabric arts shop called Purly Shell.

Christmas market entrance…soon to be a fabric arts shop called Purly Shell.

We stopped at the Depot Restaurant garden for just one thing:

The last geranium in the Depot windowbox had finally frozen and could be cut back!

The last geranium in the Depot windowbox had finally frozen and could be cut back!

A bit more Christmas shopping preceded the rest of work, at the Coastal Corner Market in Long Beach where I admired their driftwood sedum planting.

Coastal Corner Market

Coastal Corner Market

driftwood planter

driftwood planter

Just across the street from the market I photographed a cabin whose name speaks to me at this time of year:

u

sign

Then on to the Anchorage Cottages:

The melianthus major at The Anchorage Cottages was DOWN.

The Melianthus major at The Anchorage Cottages was DOWN.

Even the Virburnum flowers looked a little toasted.

Even the Virburnum flowers looked a little toasted.

And two tasks that I had in mind in Long Beach:

One chrysanthemum left in a Long Beach planter now needed chopping.

One chrysanthemum left in a Long Beach planter now needed chopping.

And the Melianthus at Fifth Street Park was bringing down the tone.

And the Melianthus at Fifth Street Park was bringing down the tone.

Allan asked if it was normal for Narcissi to be up.  I said yes, thinking he just meant green spears poking through the soil.  Then I saw that despite the freezing weather, two Narcissi were up and blooming already.

Now that's strange.

Now that’s strange.

Fifth Street Park

Fifth Street Park

Half a block north of the park sits the Hungry Harbor Grille.  I popped in to see if their Christmas Village had been set up and indeed it had.  I love it and we will go back to dinner there before Christmas to admire it more closely.

at Hungry Harbor Grille

at Hungry Harbor Grille

boat

boat

boat

boat

There will be many more photos of this after our dinner!

There will be many more photos of this after our dinner!

That was the last of work for awhile.  Back home at Staycation Central we found on our porch a gift from Lisa, Buzz, and Maddy the dog, a box of goodies from Bailey’s Café up in Nahcotta, such a yummy place that we rarely find time to visit.

a delectable present

a delectable present

I hope now that….other than potential jury duty for me in January…we are firmly back into staycation mode.

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I’ve heard a few people miss my posts.  I think you will find my week a bit dull, although I found it ever so pleasant.

Tuesday, 10 December, 2013

A stroll to Olde Towne (a little over five blocks away) took me by the Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum, where I stopped to purchase a couple of presents from their gift shop and to take some photos of their holiday decor for the Discover Ilwaco Facebook page.

the museum's Christmas train display

the museum’s Christmas train display

At Olde Towne, Chester had been presented with a new Christmas apron.

Chester of Oldie Townie in his holiday regalia

Chester of Oldie Townie in his holiday regalia (holding the crank for a Model T)

After lingering over a breakfast (i.e. noonish) panini, I meandered home, and Allan and I went off to the Bay Trader to find a cabinet to put our new telly on.  (We have finally joined the modern world instead of using my ancient box shaped telly from 1982!)

The Bay Trader

The Bay Trader is on Sandridge Road

It’s a glorious antique shop filled with all sorts of furniture.  Owner Skip is the one who built our custom bookcases when we moved into this house in 2010.

Bay Trader front porch

Bay Trader front porch

I wish I had a place for this red shelf.

I wish I had a place for this red shelf.

many the chair

many the chair

in the Bay Trader

in the Bay Trader

the shelves that Skip built for us

the shelves that Skip built for us

In other exciting staycation news, the mail brought me some Patak lime pickle and Rose’s Lemon and Lime jelly.  Patak, I learned from an Indian Grocery owner in the Pike Place Market, changed the name of their product from “pickle” to “relish” to appeal to the American market.

patak

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

The staycation excitement continued with another late morning walk to Olde Towne Cafe.

Before turning the corner...Here's our accountant's sweet dog, Helen.

Before turning the corner…Here’s our accountant’s sweet dog, Helen.

I frittered most of the day away at Olde Towne Café as, just as I was leaving after breakfast, I learned that the new writers’ group would meet in the early afternoon.  I used to attend such a group that met in the evening, but had not been able to go to the new one because of my work schedule.

local writers Jamie, Wayne, Birdie, and Betty

local writers Jamie, Wayne, Birdie, and Betty

Wayne Downing has a regular column in our local paper.

Wayne Downing has a regular column in our local paper.

I especially liked Jami'e story.

I especially liked Jamie’s story.

Back at home, I could see from the sky that the sunset promised to be spectacular.  A sunset walk to the port ensued.  It may be more exciting than my daily trips to Olde Towne and deserves it own post.

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Thursday was about this exciting.  I went to Olde Towne.

sat at the table with the pretty little tree!

sat at the table with the pretty little tree!

Chester set up a Christmas train!

Chester set up a Christmas train!

And at home, I read a Ruth Rendell mystery (and I have a blog post to make about that).

more excitement at home

more excitement at home

Friday, 13 December 2013

Just imagine, another trip to Olde Towne for brunch!

Chester and a regular at Olde Towne

Chester and a regular at Olde Towne

I explored two of our local antique shops on the way there and back, owned by our gardening clients Larry and Robert.

in the Antique Gallery Too on Spruce Street

in the Antique Gallery Too on Spruce Street

lighthouse items in The Antique Gallery at First and Lake

lighthouse items in The Antique Gallery at First and Lake

Again, I visited Olde Towne twice during the day, the second time because I had won the wreath, made by Jenna, on which I had bid during Monday’s Memory Tree lighting.  On the way, we switched compost buckets at Olde Towne and I found Jenna there and got to tell her my good news.

Kat and Jenna at Olde Towne

Kat and Jenna at Olde Towne

I took the opportunity to add another star to the tree, this time in memory of my dear neighbour Nora.

Nora's star

Nora’s star

In the evening, another stroll through town resulted in some photos of Christmas lights, also deserving of their own post.

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Monday, 2 December 2013

I have a little entry written about the Dragon Loyalty award but  have delayed it.  The end of bulb time is so exciting that it must be announced today.

This morning I woke to sunshine, followed by the thunderous sound of hail.  Allan took some photos:

Allan's garden

Allan’s garden

with hail

with hail

We had a plan to go overseas for some mundane grocery shopping and a gander at artificial Christmas trees….but first, because the final box of bulbs had come, we went to work.

Smokey and Mary:  "Are you kidding me?"

Smokey and Mary: “Are you kidding me?  Working again?”

Yes, we worked.  In fact, as we plugged along planting a few bulbs here and there, I thought that maybe we should work all day and get the mulching done at Andersen’s RV Park as well.

Yesterday when Allan was doing his non-planting part of bulb time, tidily putting all the sorting bags back in a box for storage till next year, he found a bag containing five iris reticulata.  Fortune was kind, as I had written “Larry” on the bag so knew whose bulbs they were!  It just happened to be the bag that had sat near the top of the milk crate of his sorted bulbs ; I write the client name on a couple of the topmost bags in case the sharpie label gets smudged on the crate itself.  I did pretty well at fishing all the bulbs out of all the bags; Allan only found about ten more strays, small bulbs stuck into the folds.

Just five doors down at Larry and Robert's

We started just five doors down at Larry and Robert’s

Added just a few iris reticulata around the boat

Added the few iris reticulata around the boat

We then planted four Oriental and Orienpet lilies at the Depot Restaurant:  ‘Salinas’, ‘Scarlet Delight’, ‘Friso’, ‘Purple Prince’.  And then on to the Fifth Street Park in Long Beach.

Below, you can see where the crew is digging a hole for the device that will make the clam squirt when given a quarter.

planted bulbs of the same four lilies, and 25 species crocus, and a few Iris reticulata, and 9 Allium albopilosum.

Here, planted bulbs of the same four lilies, and 25 species crocus, and a few Iris reticulata, and 9 Allium albopilosum.

I planted three Camassia leichtlinii in the dampish garden by the Fifth Street restrooms.  There, the hail had still not melted.

cold!

cold!

Asphodeline in street planter still thinks it is going to bloom.

Asphodeline in street planter still thinks it is going to bloom.

While arranging the crocus in Long Beach, I realized how well they would look in the window boxes at The Anchorage Cottages, so:

Anchorage

Anchorage

anch

All the crocus planting made me realize that there WAS a place at the Depot where tiny, early species crocus would show off well:  the new area we cleared just east of the dining room window.  So back we went on the way home.

A nice batch of crocus went in here.

A nice batch of crocus went in here.

Just to the east, behind the Oceanside Animal Clinic, a staff member was walking that adorable puppy who had been rescued with a cord tied around his little leg.  His leg had had to be amputated, and he has learned how to walk and potty just fine.

sniffing away

sniffing away

He loves people and let me pick him right up!

He loves people and let me pick him right up!

a lucky pup

a lucky pup

As we drove home, rain began….so no guilt about going across the river and missing work time.  I so very much want to find out if the O Falafel! lunch stand is open in the winter and have another amazing shwarma…but with low temperatures expected around five PM, I did not want to be driving back in the dark.  So we went straight to Home Depot (a big box store that I am not crazy about supporting, and yet…they had a wide selection of artificial trees).  None of which appealed to me.  Then to Costco for groceries, and then as far as the Fred Meyer parking lot, for more groceries.  The parking lot was white with hail and packed with cars and I could picture the long waits at the check stand.  Was it worth it to save a bit on our regular groceries (milk, some fruit, a veg?)?  No indeed, so back home we went and to my delight got there with an hour of daylight left.

I had been thinking how satisfying it would be to get the bulbs all in the ground today.  Certainly the narrative flow would be better if bulb day 19 was also the last bulb day.  More importantly, I wanted to get them into the ground before it froze, and with cold temperatures predicted, I went straight out into the back garden and got busy….because all the rest of the bulbs were mine.

I almost immediately had to take shelter from a rain squall.

in the greenhouse

view from inside the greenhouse

in the greenhouse

in the greenhouse

An arc of sunlight on the greenhouse ceiling was as close as I came to seeing a rainbow.

inside

lighter to the south

lighter to the south

I persevered and got the bulbs in:  16 lilies, 11 Alliums, 4 Camassia, and about 170 crocuses.  I could feel the temperature falling and partway through the crocuses had to go in and run my hands under warm water.  The last 50 crocuses went in willy nilly:  dig a hole, drop the corm in with numb fingers and hope it landed upright.

This afternoon’s was the first miserable bulbing session of this year’s bulb time.  Up till now, the weather has been fine and mild.  What used to be Bulb Hell went smoothly.  Our new large vehicle made it easy to deal with the crates of sorted bulbs.  The weather prevented cold hands and no rain fell on the paper bags after they were set out in gardens before planting, so all the bags are reusable for next year.   We planted a total of 5,575 bulbs and I now declare Bulb Time 2013 to be officially over!

I took a quick tour of the garden at dusk:

water beginning to stand in the bogsy wood, and the Gunnera is down

water beginning to stand in the bogsy wood, and the Gunnera is down

looking north from the bogsy wood

looking north from the bogsy wood

looking southeast from the patio

looking southeast from the patio

While the innocuous and soothing green of the gear shed next door makes an adequate back drop, I look forward to getting some evergreens planted in that back corner of the garden.

Nora told me she used to be able to see Saddle Mountain (in northern Oregon) from her back porch before that gear shed was built.

through the fence and the shrubs, Jessie's star in the background, gold leaves on flowering currant

through the fence and the shrubs, Jessie’s star in the background, gold leaves on flowering currant

Jessie's star from Nora's back yard (next door to us)

Jessie’s star from Nora’s back yard (next door to us)

looking south through the arbour

looking south through the arbour

Look at the colour on this maple seedling that I got from our friend and client Ann’s garden:

in a weedy pot

in a weedy pot

It will go back in the Danger Tree bed, once Danger Tree has been dealt with one way or another.   Here is the mother tree, planted 20 years ago in Ann’s garden:

photo by Ann Saari, 11-30-13

photo by Ann Saari, 11-30-13

I wonder if the little tree that I have in a pot is going to come out with different fall colour, as it seems redder, or is that its youthfulness?

As another part of the closure of bulb time, Allan took all the cardboard bulb shipping boxes, large and small, to be recycled.  He was gone for quite awhile as he had decided to do the rest of the shopping at Sid’s IGA in Seaview.  On the way back, he stopped to photograph the Christmas lights at Olde Towne Trading Post.

Olde Towne Trading Post Antiques and Café

Olde Towne Trading Post Antiques and Café

Luanne and a friend were inside decorating.

Luanne and friends were inside decorating.

ot

Oh, just a few more workdays till staycation when I can while away many the hour here!

Calvin slept through it all...

Calvin slept through all of the final Bulb Time day.

My reward: Peppermint Bark from Costco, a seasonal treat that I love.  Like most treats I love, it is not healthy but so satisfying with a nice cuppa tea.

photo

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Saturday, 30 November, 2013

To work or not?  I really wanted to finish the mulching at Andersen’s RV Park so that I could cross that job off the “last visits of 2013: work list.

I woke to heavy mist.  We had a coffee date at 11 AM with Kathleen S, on her last day of this month’s visit to the beach.  (I well remember the feeling of being a visitor to the Peninsula and having to go back to the city too soon.)   I decided I had better get up “early” and go to the opening day of the Saturday Christmas Market at the port in case the weather turned out to be conducive to working.

With no breakfast or coffee (thus saving my appetite for Olde Towne fare), I walked down Lake and turned on Myrtle Avenue to the Port.  By then, the mist had turned to a breezy light rain.  I stopped to call Allan (who was running about fifteen minutes behind me) and say “DAY OFF!”   As he has pointed out, Andersen’s RV Park was packed with RV folks down for the clam tides and we did not want to bring them down by lo0king depressingly muddy and downtrodden while mulching in the rain.

Pretty good excuse for a day off, yes?

I well remember one Thanksgiving Day at a former job of ours, The Shelburne Inn.  The wonderful Shoalwater Restaurant (now the Birdgewater Bistro in Astoria)  offered a Thanksgiving dinner there.  Not realizing how early the dinner began, I tossed out a few hundred bulbs all over the garden and we began to plant.  If bulb time is not done, it stops for no holiday.  Then, unexpectedly, the skies opened with a torrential rain, and the Thanksgiving dinner clientele began to arrive.  As they entered the fine restaurant with its stained glass windows and warm inviting atmosphere, they had to pass two drowned rats, me and Robert, planting bulbs in the mud.  What a sad spectacle with which to start off their elegant meal!  They probably all gave thanks that they were not us.

Back to today, and my walk down Myrtle to the Port….

On Myrtle, a tree glowed in the mist, er, rain.

On Myrtle, a tree glowed in the mist, er, rain.

I stopped first at Time Enough Books just to chat for awhile with owner Karla.

greeted by Scout, who's named for the protagonist of To Kill a Mockingbird

greeted by Scout, who’s named for the protagonist of To Kill a Mockingbird

seasonal decorations at Time Enough Books

seasonal decorations at Time Enough Books

wreath

Next door at the Saturday Christmas Market, I found Kathleen had the same idea as me:  Buying some tasty treats from Pink Poppy Bakery.

Pink Poppy Bakery, soon to have a shop by the Long Beach Arch!

Pink Poppy Bakery, soon to have a shop by the Long Beach Arch!

Harmony Soapworks from Oysterville had a booth

Harmony Soapworks from Oysterville had a booth

As did Angela's Tied Pool clothing.

As did Angela’s Tied Pool clothing.

a booth of stone candle holders

a booth of stone candle holders

I loved these little "best friends" pillows.

I loved these little “best friends” pillows.

The same fabric artist had made cute little stockings with Ilwaco scenes.

The same fabric artist had made cute little stockings with Ilwaco scenes.

Kathleen and I popped a couple of doors down to Don Nisbett’s Art Gallery where she bought a crab pot Christmas tree card.

Don's gallery

Don’s gallery

He usually has sweet treats  for customers; a cookie tided me over till we got to Olde Towne Café.   I had not been in for coffee for what seemed like a very long time (although it had probably only been a week).

Chester had been “saling”.  When his partner, Luanne, had first used that word I had assumed she meant “sailing”, since until recently he was a fisherman as well as a purveyor of good food and antiques.  Chester, however, says he likes a boat with a motor, and questing for antiques are now his business.  He had acquired quite a few new items.

frying pans

frying pans

a ship with its masts made of wood

a ship with its masts made of wood

a horn

a horn

part of a mast (I think) of a boat called Tortuga

part of a mast (I think) of a boat called Tortuga

and a thingie whose name i forget

and a thingie whose name I forget

Kathleen asked if he was going to polish the metal up, and he said, no, that when he first got into the antiques trade, he was advised to leave things as they were, and he “found that very easy to do.”

another thingie; Chester knew just what is was.  Some kind of gauge, I think.

another thingie; Chester knew just what is was. Some kind of gauge, I think.

Meanwhile, Luanne made someone a sandwich and then my breakfast and Kathleen’s lunch (biscuits and gravy and a BLT).

Luanne at work

Luanne at work

Allan arrived, soon followed by Donna and MR, so we had a proper coffee klatsch.  Judy and Tom still had a houseful of Thanksgiving company so were not part of today’s chat.  Luanne pointed out that the rain was descending quite fiercely outside, and I felt good about not have chosen work instead.

a thoughtful moment

a thoughtful moment

Donna's captured a livelier moment!

Donna’s photo captured a livelier moment!

How wonderful it felt, after day after day of bulb time and mulching, to sit and relax with good friends.

Kathleen bought a particularly lovely floral teapot (which I wish I had photographed) and then we parted.  I do wish she lived here full time.  We’d have a grand time going to various events.

Kathleen's new teapot, lower right!

Kathleen’s new teapot, lower right!

After her departure, I went home while Allan went down to the Saturday market.  I should have gone in to my home office and started the monthly billing.  Instead, as the rain had stopped (oh, dear! we could have been mulching!), I trimmed about fifteen hellebores.

Hellebore...one that does not need trimming.

Hellebore argutifolius..one that does not need trimming.

Hellebore, removing old leaves, before and after

Hellebore, removing old leaves, before and after

I was closely observed.

Image

hummer

Image copy

As dusk approached, I got into the debris pile whose demolition and re-designing will be a winter project— for a windless day as it is near the Bogsy Wood.

pile

pile

The crab pots under a tarp that were the backdrop to this area have now been moved and prepped and stacked, ready for the commercial crab season to begin sometime after December 15th.

My mission in the pile:  To find some more spuds before the hard freeze that is predicted for next week.

Yukon Gold and red potatoes

a quarter of a bucket of Yukon Gold and red potatoes

I also rescued and shelled some red runner beans.  The insides of the pods are smooth like a fine suede fabric.

pods outside and in

pods outside and in

I don’t find the beans themselves to be very tasty.  Or maybe we do not know how to cook them deliciously.  I save them to plant more red runner beans next year simply because the flowers are beautiful.

beans of pink, black, and beige

beans of pink, black, and beige

Allan put up our Christmas lights until darkness thwarted him from adding the last string over the tall arbour at the front of the house.

our decorated crab pot

our decorated crab pot

From the end of our late and much missed neighbour Nora’s yard, I took a photo of the Jessie’s Fish Company star….

Jessie's at dusk

Jessie’s at dusk

I will be able to see it from my window throughout the month of December.

After dark, I enjoyed my Pink Poppy treat, a gingerbread cupcake with molasses frosting.

The top is slightly rumpled by the wax paper it was wrapped in.

The top is slightly rumpled by the wax paper it was wrapped in.

I expect to have no excuse to delay the long task of billing tomorrow, as rain is predicted for sure, and Olde Towne Café is closed on Sundays and Mondays!

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Thursday, 21 November, 2013

Because the temperature got to at least as low as 30 F last night, I expected all my annuals to be down.  To my surprise, in the bright sunlight on the front porch, a hanging basket passed on to me by Mary N. (two doors down) still had some Calibrachoas in bloom.

in bright cold sunlight

in bright cold sunlight

In the shade of Allan’s garden, frost was still evident.

ajuga

ajuga

ice on the water feature (and Smokey following me as usual)

ice on the water feature (and Smokey following me as usual)

Geranium renardii in the front garden

Geranium renardii in the front garden

The frost in the shady areas at 11 AM reminded me that at our old house behind the boatyard, tucked right up against a hill to the west and south, frost lingered all day in winter when even our next door neighbour’s yard would thaw.  Allan and I would misjudge the weather and think it was too cold to work on days when the rest of the town was much warmer!  We would be pleasantly surprised when we got out into the sunnier world.

We did linger for ten minutes at Olde Towne this mid-morning waiting for the temperature to rise.  The annual Sanvitalia in the planter outside had gone to limp mush, so the Ilwaco planters need a check up.  Not today.

owner, chef, barista Luanne at Olde Towne

owner, chef, barista Luanne at Olde Towne

After our brief chat break with Luanne and Chester, we headed to Peninsula Landscape Supply for a load of Soil Energy.

Soil Energy coming up

Soil Energy coming up

“Soil energy combines composted wood products, aged screened sawdust, screened sand, composted chicken manure, lime, fertilizer and iron. (pH 6.2, brown tan in color, 38.9% organic matter)”

Bob, the neighbour dog, came to visit.

looking extra cute

looking extra cute

Bob, the neighbour dog, came to visit!

my buddy Bob

Back south in Long Beach, Allan and I planted bulbs in a strip of ground that has been rewired with new lighting:  Narcissi ‘Sweetheart’ and ‘Baby Moon’, Narcissus ‘Itzim’, and a mix of purple and white tulips.

The tulips will match purple signs on the side of the building.

before

The tulips came out of a bag of 100, the rest of which were slated for the Long Beach welcome sign.  They are a mix of purple and white and will match the purple signs on the edge of the building.

Then, while Allan added Soil Energy here and at the Summer House vacation rental next door, I walked around four blocks of planters, inserting the rest of the Baby Moons (six more per most planter) and pulling spent annuals.  OUT they came.  Almost all.

some Sanvitalia and California poppies still looking fine...with Erysimum 'Bowles Mauve'

some Sanvitalia and California poppies still looking fine…with Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’

The sun did that glare thing again all day long and made it hard to see my work, cars, the curb, and pretty much everything.

The frost did not take down this Cerinthe volunteer!

The frost did not take down this Cerinthe volunteer!

Geranium 'Rozanne' still blue

Geranium ‘Rozanne’ still blue

intense blue sky as city crew puts up decorations

intense blue sky as city crew puts up decorations

The city crew is careful not to stand in my planters.  Back when the planters were done by volunteers, I did four.  I used to bug the city crew to not stand in them.  Later, when Parks Manager Mike Kitzman and city administrator of the era, Nabiel Shawa, wanted to hire me I said to Mike, “Why?  I figured you just thought I was a pest, always bugging your guys to not stand in the planters!”  My then-partner and I would actually stop our car to complain if we saw any “planter standing”.  Mike said he wanted me to be hired because my concern for the planters showed that I would really care about the job.

When I returned to the Fifth Street quadrant of parks, Allan had finished mulching the strip by Scrappucino…

after

after

and had planted bulbs and mulched at Summerhouse.

the very small Summer House garden

the very small Summer House garden

We planted tulip ‘Akebono’ and assorted yellow Narcissi, including ‘Rjinveld’s Early Sensation’.  ‘Akebono’ was a last minute, additional purchase from Colorblends.

Tulip 'Akebono' from Colorblends.  Wish I had gotten 100 instead of just 25.

Tulip ‘Akebono’ from Colorblends. Wish I had gotten 100 instead of just 25.

A few plants in the park in front of Marsh’s Free Museum and Captain Bob’s Chowder had gotten frost-blasted.  After cutting down the pineapple sage and removing the last of the cosmos, it looked like this.

marsh

We still need to cut down the Nepeta (catmint) ‘Walker’s Low’ along the front. Today we ran out of time.  I’ll leave most of the Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ standing well into the winter.

Our last job, and one causing me some anxiety about whether or not we would have time to finish it, was the Long Beach welcome sign.  At last, we ripped out the annuals, revealing lots of the horrible, thready type of horsetail that infests this planting box.

before

before, back and front

How satisfying to rip out the annuals.  Even though I had stopped deadheading them, the Agyranthemum ‘Butterfly’ on the south side had still looked moderately good up until yesterday.  The Brachychome and Bidens along the edges still bloomed in blue and gold.  But I had had it with them!  Out they came.

a refreshing change

a refreshing change

Some Muscari has already popped up along the edge.  (That is not unusual.)  Under the nice, fresh mulch, we planted two tulips mixes from Colorblends.  Along the front of the sign, with its yellow sun, I chose the mix called Triathlon.

Triathlon, photo from Colorblends

Triathlon, photo from Colorblends

In previous years, I have used Red and Yellow Cubed but wanted something slightly different.

Red and Yellow Cubed, photo from Colorblends

Red and Yellow Cubed, photo from Colorblends

For the cooler colours on the north side of the sign, I have been using Shortwave mix.

Shortwave, photo from Colorblends

Shortwave, photo from Colorblends

This year, just for a small difference, I chose the slightly taller Triple Play mix.

Triple Play from Colorblends

Triple Play, photo  from Colorblends

We treat the tulips as annuals here and rip out the old ones in May.  They rarely come back as good looking on the second year, and the sign must be showy.

After dumping the debris at the City Works yard just as the sun began to set, we were heading for NIVA green when we noticed the colour of the sky.  Allan drove straight out to the Bolstadt parking lot and even though the sky was fading already, I got a photo with the boardwalk as foregr0und:

sunset over the Long Beach boardwalk

sunset over the Long Beach boardwalk

The several strollers along the boardwalk must have felt that they were floating in that peachy sky colour.  Or so it looks to me.

Circling back around, we had a brief visit with Heather at NIVA green.  We’d found, in a trash can, a metal sign saying STONER WAY.  She cuts up license plates for art and we thought, correctly, that she could make use of the sign.

Heather told us she is discontinuing her manufacture of purses made from old record albums, so get them while you can!

old LP purses

old LP purses, very labour intensive to make

I thought that several friends of ours might be able to make use of the Dammit Dolls:

dolls

dolls

These would be very handy when you find that you need expensive repairs on your roof, or a new washing machine.

We stayed only briefly as I had one more outdoor project.  In the near dark, we dumped the last four buckets of Soil Energy into the planter near First Place Mall (a tiny “mall” of a few storefronts).  That planter had been annoyingly low.  Four more annuals came out, and the lavenders got a quick trim (with very cold hands clutching the clippers).

Having read somewhere that one’s tastebuds decline with age, I have been trying to go to the delicious Pelicano restaurant once a month to enjoy their ever changing monthly specials.  We missed last month, and most of the summer months.  Even though, as Allan pointed out, we would be out for dinner three nights in a row, I suggested we go tonight simply because we had the time.  It was not at all hard to talk him into it.

Pelicano Restaurant

Pelicano Restaurant

delicious squash soup

delicious squash soup

My drink was a strong potion featuring apple cider from Pink Poppy Farm.  Our server was the delightful Ms. Pink Poppy herself.  Our gardening client Eric Wiegardt’s art adorned the walls.  The lights of the boats glowed just outside the window.  The port crew have decorated the street lamps with white lights for the holidays.  There was only one other table occupied, as we were dining early, and the two other diners were having a most interesting conversation that we could almost overhear.  (They sounded like the sort of women I’d like to be friends with.)  We celebrated finishing the planting of the Long Beach bulbs, very much the biggest batch of Bulb Time.

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Friday, 15 November, 2013

Smokey and Mary definitely had the right idea about what to do for the day:

catsI would love to have followed their example and stayed home.  I would have been more productive than just napping and would have spent the day doing spreadsheets of bulb lists.  Instead, I decided we should go out in the rain and plant the eight remaining planters and two trees left to do north of the light on Pacific Avenue in Long Beach.  Allan was skeptical.

looking west from the driveway

looking west from the driveway

It hadn’t been raining this hard while I was putting my coat on!

into Long Beach....the rain had lessened

into Long Beach….the rain had lessened

The planters in question are in the two blocks north of the stoplight.

Just before I took this photo, we had seen three men in camo carrying rifle bags getting out of a truck.  Allan said “Maybe they are hunting donuts!” [at The Cottage Bakery].

We had a break in the weather and got the eight planters done, the first block with ‘Green Wave’ tulips as a shout out to my favourite shop, NIVA green, and then, with continued respite from strong wind and only a drizzle of rain, we did the three newly empty planters out on the beach approaches with minor bulbs (crocus, iris reticulata, muscari, etc) and species Narcissi.  These were the planters from which we removed sheets of Vinca and moneywort not long ago.

We have had a real problem with finger blight on the beach approaches in spring.  People cannot seem to resist picking ALL the narcissi out of the planters.  But we will try again.  Perhaps those who did so have moved on.

As we left the third planter, the rain and wind kicked up but sadly, I had realized we’d forgotten to plant the narcissi slated for the trees by Dennis Co. on the northernmost block.  We did so, in miserable weather indeed.  I was too wet during most of this to take any photos, but our client, Lisa, drove by and painted this word picture for me later:  “I drove past you and Allan today in Long Beach, in the pouring rain, very intently tending to a planter. You are heroes. …What the feck were you doing out in such shit weather??”   To which I replied, “We have bulbs to plant and we gotta plant ’ems.”

The rain had begun as we approached the final work project (the tree bulbs).

The rain had begun as we approached the final work project (the tree bulbs).

My dream when the weather did not seem as bad as expected had been to get the Veterans Field (red, white, and blue) bulbs planted as well.  It was not to be.  We had been offered coffee earlier by Heather of NIVA green (my favourite shop ever) so we went there; it is a block down from the last two trees.

There we found artist Joe Chasse also enjoying a cup of coffee.  You may remember his found object robots from last month’s  Cash Mob post.

Joe Chasse

Joe Chasse and his finds

an unusual eggbeater

an unusual eggbeater (and a plug for Chico’s Pizza)

Heather has a hint:  If you want a meat pizza, order the vegetarian pizza at Chico’s and then ask for the meat to be added.  That way you get more delicious veg, too.

I failed to get a good photo of my little friend, Tiny.

I failed to get a good photo of my little friend, Tiny.

Before leaving, we took a tour of Heather’s wonderful shop.

Heather Ramsay's latest lamps

Heather Ramsay’s latest lamps

Heather makes signs with words made from license plates.  (You can commission what you want; we have one for “Tangly Cottage”.)  Recently a couple came in from a town north of the Peninsula and the woman said that her partner made things from license plates, as well, and would Heather be interested in seeing them?  She most certainly was, and pointed out to me the careful detailing and joints of the man’s bird feeders.

an elegant license plate birdfeeder

an elegant license plate birdfeeder

details

and another

and another

and a license plate planter by the same man

and a license plate planter by the same man

Some socks with flowers and interesting slogans benefit Doctors Without Borders.  Although adorable, they are not for me because I only wear fluffy, not thin, socks.

"THEY DON'T WANT YOU TO DO IT BUT I SAY DO IT"

“THEY DON’T WANT YOU TO DO IT BUT I SAY DO IT”

"YOU'RE NOT OBSESSIVE, YOU'RE COMPULSIVELY AWESOME."

“YOU’RE NOT OBSESSIVE, YOU’RE COMPULSIVELY AWESOME.”

And then we had yet another break, at Olde Towne café.  It had been a rough day!

view from our table at Olde Towne

view from our table at Olde Towne

We each had delicious sandwiches and best of all, Luanne had time to sit with us and we had a good natter.

I bought the peacock...only $6.95.  Will look great on the wire fence next summer.

I bought the peacock…only $6.95. Will look great on the wire fence next summer.

So much for doing spreadsheets all day.  I did make some belated bulb sorting progress in the early evening at home by cleaning up the sorting area after micro-sorting the box of Port of Ilwaco bulbs into three categories:  Port office garden, Howerton Street gardens (short narcissi) and the boatyard garden (tall narcissi).  The Port gets very few tulips because of deer, and, because I was disheartened by bird depredations last year, only the port office will get Iris reticulata and crocuses.

Now we are in for several days of rain and wind and we may take a bulb planting break.  Here’s to some time indoors catching up on paperwork!  And on Saturday we have tickets for a play.

Note:  Debbie Teashon of Rainyside.com just published an excellent article about Salvia viridis (painted sage), featuring some photos taken in the Long Beach planters and other local gardens.

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Thursday, 31 October 2013

How tedious it can be when someone tells all about their dreams. But let it be said that I slept very late on this rainy day off and dreamt that I was enjoying an extended stay at the Sylvia Beach Hotel and that every day I added one more night to my dream vacation there so that I could read more of the room journals.

Upon awakening, I created most of the day’s blog post because I knew I would have little time at the end of the evening. All I would have to add after Halloween activities would be the sunset photos. I am still running two days behind on the blog because of last week’s revelries with visitor Debbie Teashon! That’s nothing, though, because there are times I have been blogging actual years behind.

Friends awaited at coffee klatsch at Olde Towne Café. Our dear friend Patt had been unable to make it back to Ilwaco, her former and much missed home. We had a photo taken to let her know we were thinking of her and were so sorry she would miss Ilwaco Halloween.

Jamie, Donna, Tom, Judy, me

Jamie, Donna, Tom, Judy, me

Judy must be thinking how tired she is of being photographed by us, or how sad it is that Patt was not here. Sorry, Judy…. Tom’s quizzical “look” is the one Judy says she sees every day and something about him that we find quite endearing.

On the left, above, a regular blog reader (one of the not huge number of about 40!) joins our group! Jamie had introduced herself to me and Allan in one of the Long Beach parks and I knew from our conversation that she would be deeply sympatico with Donna, Tom and Judy as well. They bonded immediately on dogs, liberalism, and New York!

We had one more photo letting Patt know how very much we missed her.

We miss Patt!

We miss Patt!

Coffee klatching carried on into the afternoon until we departed with a sense of panic as we still had much decorating to do before trick or treat time:

thing

This bit of garden decor can look quite scary

the webbing of the Corridor of Spooky Plants

the webbing of the Corridor of Spooky Plants

Tom and Judy hustled to get their scary clown set up. (complete with scary music). Here he is in a photo showing the wonderful fall foliage:

judy

and the photo I used for the Halloween Ilwaco Facebook album:

more Halloween-y

more Halloween-y

Allan working on last minute touches.

Allan working on last minute touches.

Just as the trick or treating began (as early as 4:30!) I went for a walk to catch the completed decorations at the other houses on the two east-west flatland Ilwaco streets that are a Halloween mecca. Chris was still trying to figure out the best way to structure his giant squid.

Chris's Halloween house

Chris’s Halloween house

We believe that Chris is the one who MADE Ilwaco the Halloween center of the SW Washington coast. The town was not much of a Halloween spot when I used to live over behind the boatyard. Over recent years, Chris’s creations have drawn people in and inspired others to decorate extravagantly as well.

Chris's moveable shark in 2010

Chris’s moveable shark in 2010

the dragon of 2011

the moveable dragon of 2011

the moveable hippo of 2012

the moveable hippo of 2012

As he worried over his giant squid I warned him the trick or treaters were already appearing! “They’re too early!” he said; “They have to come back after dark!” But they were here…

Spruce Street

on Spruce Street

Below is the creature that inspired me to at least put a sheet over our garden tuteur. Next year, I hope we (read: Allan) can construct something big and spooky with plant materials.

Spruce Street monster

Spruce Street monster

at the same house

at the same house

one house down....Next year, I want to have window things like this.  They add a lot.

one house down….Next year, I want to have window things like this. They add a lot.

a gardening aside:  azalea blooming just east of Spruce Street

a gardening aside: azalea blooming just east of Spruce Street

walking east on Spruce past one of my favourite houses in town....

walking east on Spruce past one of my favourite houses in town….

Shell Cottage

Shell Cottage

a bit further east

a bit further east, another house with a pretty garden

arch

girl

I love the curtain in the entrance.

Some decorations were very simple, but a pumpkin, a porch light, and an open gate are all that is needed to say “Welcome”.

decor

The rain had turned to a light and moody mist, perfect for the evening.

rain

On the corner just down from us, the house of the Lost Garden is, sadly, lacking an occupant. It would have made an excellent Halloween house.

house

a very old house

Although it was my turn to relieve Allan so he could go see the sights, I had to POP down to see Judy and Tom’s house once again.

Hornbuckle garden with good Halloween colours

Hornbuckle garden with good Halloween colours

Tom at the door

Tom at the door

I walked back home (four doors away) as, at 5:30, the crowd on Lake Street became thicker.

walking past Mary's house

walking past Mary’s house

The misty air echoed with the sound of excited yelling and running feet. Sometimes the echoing voices in the distance sounded riotous and quite startling in the usually quiet streets.

Lake Street looking east

Lake Street looking east

our front garden

our front garden

our spooky walk

our spooky walk

It was time to put out the battery operated candles along the spooky corridor…and I realized we could use real candles plunged into the soil further back in the garden, safely away from the children’s costumes.

spooky corridor detail:  I lose patience at spreading out the cobweb stuff.

spooky corridor detail: I lose patience at spreading out the cobweb stuff.

When I volunteered to take over the rather overwhelming and frenzied task of handing out treats to the ravening hordes, Allan said that in his experience, parents tended to be suspicious of a man out photographing trick or treaters, and that it would be better if I went back out till dark. It would save him having to explain that the photos are for the Ilwaco Facebook pages (and are not close ups of unmasked children without the parents’ permission, that is to say, children of people we know).

5:40 PM

5:40 PM….I am off into the streets again.

across the street, the J's house.  (The whole family has names that start with J.  Very helpful for people with a bad memory for names.)

across the street, the J’s house. (The whole family has names that start with J. Very helpful for people with a bad memory for names.)

a big lineup at Tom and Judy's

a big lineup at Tom and Judy’s

Judy told me their scary clown was photographed hundreds of times. One child ran madly up the walk and back to get his candy while the clown was down inside the Jack in the Box. (It hides, then remerges in a ghastly fashion with creepy music.) One mother stayed at the gate, saying she herself was terrified of clowns.

clown rising

clown rising

Judy was undaunted.

Judy was undaunted.

at Lake and Myrtle, the prettiest Halloween porch

at Lake and Myrtle, the prettiest Halloween porch

I love the way the "orange house" owners decorated with boxes.  Very clever indeed.

Further west: I love the way the “orange house” owners decorated with boxes. Very clever indeed.

Next door to the orange house, Chris and his friends had gotten their squid plan all sorted out.

pair

The tentacles would wait till trick or treaters came up the walk…

squid

and then would swoop in.

manned tentacles

manned tentacles

Nearby stood one of the many elegantly costumed adults. I noticed a definite steampunk theme this year.

a steampunk gentleman

a steampunk gentleman

excellent detail

excellent detail

I like the look of the groups of costumed folks walking our usually quiet streets.

fog

at Lake and Pearl

at Spruce and Williams

at Spruce and Williams

The Inn at Harbour Village, just up the hill

The Inn at Harbour Village, just up the hill

Kelly

At her home and business location on Spruce Street, Kelly of Blue Crab Graphics sported a most interesting costume.

kelly

She explained, “I’m not a witch; I’ve been labeled as a witch.”

I popped just around the corner at First Avenue to peek into Olde Towne where the 6-9 PM potluck party was just getting started. We would not be able to go till it was almost over because of the trick or treaters. Luanne’s son Michael had been perfecting the art of zombie makeup.

Café owner and barista Luanne

Café owner and barista Luanne

Michael

Michael

a ghostly photo of café regular Linda crossing the street to the Café

a ghostly photo of café regular Linda crossing the street to the Café

(She’s wearing Kelly’s Blue Crab Graphics Ilwaco semaphore sweatshirt. I had to take the photo on the move because a car was waiting for us local zombie grrrls.)

The Ilwaco Volunteer Fire Dept. always opens for trick or treaters.

The Ilwaco Volunteer Fire Dept. always opens for trick or treaters.

on the right, fire chief Tom Williams (who also built Judy's kitchen cupboards!)

on the right, fire chief Tom Williams (who also built Judy’s kitchen cupboards!)

firefighting suits at the ready

firefighting suits at the ready

across the street at the home of one of the firefighters

across the street at the home of one of the firefighters

further east, an old porch with one string of lights

further east, an old porch with one string of lights

the M and J Plumbing house

the M and J Plumbing house

Allan and I were trying to think of a last minute fake figure to put in a chair. We came up with nothing. This mummy is a great idea:

The Mummy of M and J Plumbing

The Mummy of M and J Plumbing

I very much like the spooky hand skeleton lights at Advent and Spruce Street.

6:15 PM: I very much like the spooky hand skeleton lights at Advent and Spruce Street.

at Lake and Advent

at Lake and Advent

and home again at 6: 20 PM.

and home again at 6: 20 PM.

our ghost

our ghost

Allan had tried lighting the inside of our ghost. That made the yellow roses show too much, which was not very scary.

I had one more look at Tom and Judy's house...

I had one more look at Tom and Judy’s house…

Halloween participation is not mandatory. Those who do not want to hand out candy just keep their gates closed and turn out their lights, especially the porch light.

looking west on Lake Street

looking west on Lake Street, another spooky old house with no candy

Now it was definitely time for me to go home and take over the treat detail from Allan. It was his turn to go out and take photos, and here they are:

earlier:  the spooky corridor

earlier: the spooky corridor

across the street

across the street

looking west on Lake

looking west on Lake

looking west from our house down Lake Street

looking west from our house down Lake Street

our Corridor of Spooky Plants with candles

our Corridor of Spooky Plants with candles

me ensconced on the porch handing out candy

me ensconced on the porch handing out candy

a simple costume

a simple costume

You shall not pass....

You shall not pass….below our porch

along our sidewalk

along our sidewalk

the J's house

the J’s house

that scary clown

that scary clown

Tom waiting behind the door.

Tom waiting behind the door.

After the first year of answering the door for 300 plus trick or treaters, I found it easier to just sit on the porch. However, our porch provides a bit of a hidey spot off to the side which is most effective.

Tom, AKA "Mr Judy"

Tom, AKA “Mr Judy”

There is a longstanding tradition among my internet friends (sometimes “imaginary friends”) that if one of a couple is more active online, the other one, usually male, gets called by their partner’s name, as…Mr. Judy.

another window treatment I would like to have for next year...

another window treatment I would like to have for next year…

I had not taken time to walk up the hill to the Inn at Harbour Village, but Allan did.

Inn at Harbour Village

Inn at Harbour Village

Inn at Harbour Village

Inn at Harbour Village

Inn at Harbour Village

Inn at Harbour Village

While Allan was out photographing nightlife, I and the Hornbuckles got to see Luanne and the Olde Towne crew as they zombie walked through town.

Luanne zombie walked into our garden.  Photo courtesy Jenna Lanette Austin.

Luanne zombie walked into our garden. Photo courtesy Jenna Lanette Austin.

Allan returns home...

Allan returns home…

and captures the perfect Halloween accessory.

and captures the perfect Halloween accessory.

We still had trick or treaters, including some very small and young ones, up till 8:30 when we turned out the lights. One young chap, about twelve years old and very articulate (dressed as Julius Caesar) expressed sadness that “so few houses were giving out candy.” I told him he needed to start earlier next year, as many houses had run out, and gave him five extra pieces. Tom and Judy had gone through their 400 pieces of candy by 7:40 and then closed down the scary clown. By then, Allan had goneon an emergency run to the local store, after an anxious call from me, and picked up four more bags of rather pricey candy (compared to the economy candy we had stocked up on in advance). Next year, the Hornbuckles and we will prepare for 600. We heard that on Spruce Street some households had that many.

Our attempt to keep a tally failed to be exact.

the tally sheet

the tally sheet

You can tell the difference between Allan’s neat start, divided into fives, and my chaotic scribblings. (“Ate one two three–hungry!”) By the count of the number of candies, we also had closer to 400. When the children arrive in drove after drove it is terribly hard to count them.

We made it to the party at Olde Towne only twenty minutes before it ended. My tabouli had arrived at the potluck earlier, thanks to Allan delivering it.

tabouli with hot mustard leaves and cilantro and flowers from the garden

tabouli with hot mustard leaves and cilantro and flowers from the garden

I will rely on another photo from Jenna to show the party we missed:

wild times at Oldie Townie

wild times at Oldie Townie

And then home…to finish the blog about gardening work of two days ago and to upload over 100 photos to a Facebook photo album

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