Thursday, June 21, 2018


It was just an ordinary day as I dropped off my water payment at the local city hall. As I turned around, I spotted this lovely reminder that beauty is indeed all around if you take the time to notice.

I was also touched by the beauty of the below anniversary gift from my husband and the effort that he put into wrapping it. It was so pretty that I asked him if I could wait to open it another day just so I could admire the pretty wrapping! How can one bear to unwrap such a lovely thing?

My flowering houseplants also paint a pretty picture that I can enjoy on a daily basis. These two violets are putting on quite the show right now. They reside at the top of my home's main staircase, an area that is flooded with sunlight. 

Outside the view from the garden is just as pretty. This fuzzy charmer is a new addition. Too bad it's an annual and won't return to grace the garden next spring.

The zucchini are flourishing and we harvested our first one last week. The photo below shows new little babies coming along. Hopefully they'll be ready in another week or so. Speaking of zucchini, I'd be curious to know what you fellow zucchini growers do to combat squash borers. Please email me your tips/advice at We've lucked out in past years but want to be proactive about them going forward since they totally destroy a plant. 

Our tomato plants are loving all the rain we've been getting. They were about 4 feet tall when I took this photo last week and now they are close to my height. The first of the cherry tomato crop should be ready soon.

If you're like me, you also see the beauty in a home-cooked meal. One of the great comforts to me is making my own soup with our homemade bone broth and leftovers. We threw some of our leftover pork roast and red potatoes into our yummy bone broth, added some broccoli and enoki mushrooms and voila! Dinner was served!

I don't eat out much since I have to fix much of my own food due to my low-sodium dietary needs but my husband took a couple days off last week and we treated ourselves to lunch out both days. While we were in Ames, we stopped by our favorite local restaurant, Aunt Maude's, for some chicken crepes.

The following day we lunched at The Radish in nearby Grimes, Iowa. I had to indulge in their popcorn shrimp, which came with the most delicious green beans (not pictured).

The highlight of our two days together was finally finding the glass pig terrarium I'd been looking for since seeing this planted one at a national African violet convention three years ago. I'd put a call out for one on my blog at the time but never heard from anyone who had one to sell.

As we explored an antique mall, I turned around and saw this glass pig just waiting for me to buy him! At 20 percent off, I couldn't resist him as many like him are selling for more than $100 on in the internet and I have a feeling I won't encounter another one again soon!