Tuesday, January 6, 2015

That's my story, and I'm stickin' to it

On January 11, 2010, I created my very first blog post and hit "publish." So began a journey that started out as just a blog reader, and grew to much more.

About Me:

I'm a 50-something woman living in Iowa. I grew up in a small town, graduated high school, and went to nursing school. I married Ron 38 years ago, and we have two children, a daughter and a son, and now two grandsons.

I love animals and gardening; I love travel; I enjoy NASCAR and basketball (spectator only). I'm retired, I'm a tea granny, and I like to cook.


About Beyond the Garden Gate:

Over the years I've shared many things (500 posts and counting).

 I've shared "weather shots," like this icy day in my backyard 5 winters ago.


I've shared sunsets from my deck.


 I've shared bits and pieces of Tortie's story. She was a feral kitten in 2008 who came to stay and in fact still lives with us today.


 I've shared tea and food...























 I created and photographed eleborate tablescapes that we never ate at. (lol)


I shared a bit of home decor.


And then, there is THE GARDENS...my favorite thing to photograph and blog about!

 Swamp milkweed


 A bit of whimsy: a faux birdie in a nest I found and placed in our Japanese maple tree


 Blueberries - we have four or five bushes and they do very well here.


Edging the garden


 A favorite photo - so colorful!




 I love daylilies and have about 80 of them in my gardens.




I have hundreds of coneflowers spread throughout the gardens. They, along with daylilies and lupines, are my favorite flowers.

I occasionally blog about my travel adventures. Perhaps there will be more about that now that my hubby has retired. Sweet freedom!

MACKINAC ISLAND:









AUSTRALIA:









CHARLESTON:



CANADA:

 Visiting blogging friend, Judith. Judith blogs at Lavender Cottage.


 Niagara Falls



5 years, 500 plus posts and counting...what does the future of the blog look like?
I consider this primarily a gardening blog and we all know there's not much gardening going on during an Iowa winter. Therefore, except for the occasional tea post or "weather shot" the blog will be rather quiet until springtime. Then, wow! You can journey with me as I continue the garden remodeling, a big project that began when we added a New Orleans-inspired courtyard and pergola plus a waterfall, stream, and pond. You can read more about that project HERE.

Thanks to all my readers for five great years!


Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Getting ready....

It's a pie factory here today!  lol

 Chocolate pecan pie for Christmas dinner with the kids


 French Silk: I'll add whipped topping before serving. This is going to day after Christmas dinner with my mom and sister and her family.


 Apple crumb pie, for the day after gathering as well

I really enjoy making (and eating) pie!


I made some homemade rolls to go with Christmas dinner as well, and "Texas Trash" is in the oven right now.

Food, family, friends and most of all - FAITH - that's what Christmas means to me.

May you have a blessed Christmas and a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.




Saturday, December 20, 2014

Merry Christmas!

I want to wish each and everyone of you a blessed Christmas filled with love, friends, and family.

She brought forth her firstborn Son, and laid him in a manger, for there was no room in the inn.

May we all make room for Jesus in our hearts.


Thursday, December 18, 2014

Critters at Sunsplash Gardens

 Gracie likes to sit under the Christmas tree.


Recently I washed some blankets, folded them and set them on the table. Gracie found it an appealing place to rest.


 Just back from the groomer - Josey Rose, my miniature schnauzer


 I added the Santa hat in PicMonkey.


 I put out corn for the squirrels. They will eat a whole ear every day! We call them "piggy" squirrels.


 This blue jay likes corn too.


 Female (left) and male goldfinches on the niger feeder


 The Red-bellied woodpecker likes corn too.


Tortie first came to our yard as a kitten with her mother in 2008. She never left!

We also have seen fox and deer in the yard, and there are two stray cats that come every day for Meow Mix!


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