Simple pleasures.

This is a picture of the Pride of Barbados (Caesalpinia pulcherrima) shrub in our yard, finally in bloom!

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I have nurtured this for several years.  Though the brutally cold temperature dips appeared to kill it to the ground every winter, it popped up green shoots each spring.  But, this is the first year it has flowered for me.   While we were out of town for the month of August, I hoped I could keep it and some of our other flowering plants alive with an automated sprinkler.   Upon our return, I was so pleased to see that not only did they all survive, but this plant had 2 flower heads ready to bloom.   A happy gardener, here.  🙂

FWIW, I would recommend the low-tech sprinkler controller I picked up at Home Depot, since our underground sprinkler system is out of commission.   But I’m also overjoyed by the unending rain we’ve had since we returned at the end of August.  I’ll happily take every drop.

 

Boats, et cetera.

We toured the Lady Washington and Hawaiian Chieftain tall ships with Francine, Rebecca & Aaron. It was fun to learn they would be here during our visit.

The next day we ambled through some antique shops, and then took the ferry to Seattle to visit Pat, Nga and the boys.

A photo of the Southworth ferry (manipulated with the Prisma app)…

They have a beautiful new home in seattle with a view of the Sound. Another pic, manipulated with the Prisma app that I so enjoy playing with.

Will helped Monte hang their dartboard. And the throwing ensued.

We walked around the neighborhood garage sales, and all the beautiful yards.

Then blackberry picking…

Then we made a wonderful seafood dinner. I sautéed some Manila clams. They were eaten so fast I only got an after photo…

Pat grilled salmon and it was perfect!

Nick and I put together Lego dinosaurs after dinner – well, I helped. 🙂

Nectar macro.

A macro view of the nectar oozing out of some lilies that I brought home the other day.   If I was a bee I’d be pretty excited about it.  🙂

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Sooo, in the process of googling what that part of the lily is, I found waaaay too much information.   But I’ll summarize by saying that I believe the central prong-like thing sticking out is the pistil, and the end of it is its lady-part, called the stigma, and the nectar it is oozing is there to catch bits of pollen from the worker bees as they fly in and out.   There you go – botany lesson of the day.

The zinnies just keep on coming.

This is one of the latest zinnias from the garden.  A vibrant, pink-salmon-fuschia color – this shot has not been retouched aside from cropping it.    The color is just amazing.IMG_9244

Autumn afternoon.

We checked out trees at a nearby nursery.  They didn’t have many, but I found the mums mesmerizing.

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Then we stopped by the beer garden at Austin Beer Works brewery and enjoyed a couple pints and some trailer-fare for dinner.

IMG_9239With temps still in the 90s, it’s hard to imagine a chill in the air.  But that, too, shall come.

Saturday.  

We enjoyed a lovely night on the hook.  We cooked up some grilled red peppers, chicken poblano sausages and rice.  

We’re spoiled now…used our phone as a wireless hotspot and then streamed shows off of amazon prime on TV down below until we both fell asleep.   Not exactly roughing it. 🙂

This morning I paddled for quite a while then went ashore to scrub 6 months of gunk from the bottom of the kayak.   I also checked on some geocaches I’d hidden nearby.  All good. 

Pretty sights:   

 

Tonight Kurt will join us for another night in the cove.  An almost full moon should light things up. 

Bed time. 

I got a bit of a late start, but I finally tended to my fenceline flowerbed.   Plumbago, liriope, red salvia, autumn sage, gaillardia, may night salvia, tickseed, geranium, flowering sage,  and a couple white annuals. 

I’m looking forward to some color!