Tuesday, May 22, 2012


the journey of a thousand plantings begins with a red raspberry bush. a harmless sunday a few weeks ago which started in stony brook took us down 25-A into nassau county. that's a beautiful drive, i really enjoy it. jay cardinal and i happened upon brookville nurseries, where the sweetest lady (aptly named rose) helped us pick out some suitable choices for our herb garden, which is now taking taking off.

fortunately (or unfortunately), the brush neighboring Pond House is home to three adorable bunnies. that makes planting interesting. my asiatic lilies already a sad entree, i vowed to do right by our edible garden and install a short fence around the area. sore rotator cuff aside, success! (and much amusement and curiosity on the part of the local robins and catbird, who were tittering at me close by the whole time i put it in the ground.)

we're now growing rosemary (which jay cardinal has already used in some of his roasted dishes), basil, oregano, lavendar, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, spearmint and pineapple mint (which tastes as yummy as it smells). soil is definitely quirky here--- lots of sand and clay, and some deficiencies. that seems to make some things grow splendidly while other things flop. i don't know that i have enough of a green thrumb to force cultivation of things that are unnatural to the soil, but i'm taking a stab at it with some holly tone and natural fertilizers. (gotta keep it natural, since we're getting chickens soon...)

we took a lot of pleasure from our tree peony, which bloomed for over a month. now the rhodedenron has taken off something fierce...

what are you growing in your gardens? what do you find grows well, and what should i avoid?

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

rainy tuesday.

the weather here at pond house is pretty dismal today, so i took advantage of the end-of-school-year winding down to get some much-overlooked chores done.

dragging pooled-up garbage cans from a flooding road in the rain notwithstanding (that's life in a watershed--- i'm just grateful it doesn't come in the house!), it's been a deceivingly pleasant day. after an overpriced-but-speedy oil change in st. james and a few new windshield wipers, i'm ready to take on the world, er, rain.

the sears in lake ronkonkoma is closing, so i stopped by there to get more painting supplies at a reasonable price. (home depot, i've noticed, is still the cheapest place for for purdy brushes, though. :-) i haven't spent much time in lake ronkonkoma though it's very close to our village, but i poked around a little bit. in spite of the rain, i stopped by a county park and got a shot of the lake. from what i understand, the boat ramp's only a few minutes from our house. can't wait to visit again when it's not raining!

also made a trip to our village's adorable little post office for the first time to arrange the details of our upcoming baby chick shipment. (that's right, jay cardinal and i are going to be "parents" in a few short weeks :-)
and since gardening's futile today, it's time for a nap before i catch up with jay cardinal...

what are your rainy day rituals?

Thursday, May 3, 2012

lazy sunday.

i'm looking forward to experiencing more of these in the future... spring is the craziest season for jay cardinal and me, but we try our best to preserve sunday as our day of rest.
among our popular sunday activities includes restocking our bagel supply at blvd bagels. for those of you in the smithtown area, be sure to check them out!

last weekend found us ambling around the north shore... first in stony brook, at the stony brook grist mill. i'm a closet history buff so this little sojourn appealed to me. then we crossed the street and were delighted by avalon park and preserve. it was such a picturesque journey around a lake, but the biggest joy was seeing man at work embracing and respecting nature. a swan couple had started a nest and their eggs were beginning to hatch. the folks at Avalon took the appropriate measure in fencing off the area from visitors and providing basic guidelines for respecting the waterfowl, and walkers could enjoy watching nature in action. it was so gratifying seeing so many people quietly transfixed on the hatcing babies and hearing from kids and grown-ups alike

-"i could watch this all day"
-"this is way better than watching it on tv"

couldn't get a good shot with my camera phone, but it was an amazing experience. nature floors me in its honesty and ability to humble us. those birds didn't need us (beyond our respect of them), but we all needed them. it infused our day with awe.

afterwards we encountered our first merganser, which jay cardinal commented looked like a duck who stuck his finger in a socket.

the other thing i'm seriously considering taking advantage of at avalon is the yoga classes. the park has numerous community class offerings, but this one in particular is calling to me as my yoga-ing is getting rusty!

after a jaunt through avalon, we walked into stony brook village, which has a lot of cute chain and boutique shops alike, and then over to the marina area, where i could eagerly inhale one of my favorite scents, the smell of saltwater. i love long island. (okay, these may be a re-occuring theme on this blog...)

how do you enjoy a lazy sunday on long island? ...stay tuned for part two! :-)