The process of creating my mosaic art pieces.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Toyota and NASA? 

NASA is going to investigate the sticky accelerators on Toyotas? Really?
Visit News Link Here

Aren't these these the same people that gave us "Roger, Challenger, go with throttle up."!!!

Oh yes, I feel more secure now.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Figs, Gopher Tortoise and a Parrot! 

What a rip roaring’ 24 hours we’ve had here!

Yesterday, Plant Daddy and I ate a pork roast for dinner…with a mixed vegetable dish of cauliflower, broccoli, celery, onions, peas and carrots, all home-grown of course, and a roasted potatoes and bell peppers dish (home grown peppers but not potatoes).

After dinner, I carved all the meat off the bone so we could have BBQ sandwiches the next night. I set aside the leftover skin and the bone.
I had received a polite little note from a friend of Zeus. It read…

“Dear Mom,
I am not getting enough cat food to eat. Can I please have some leftovers and can you possibly arrange a trip for me to a better buffet?” So indeed, I set out the scraps for the friend and arranged the ticket.

We were feeling energetic so we went to Home Depot where we ran across a steal on some large plastic pots. PD needed a display for his greenhouse at work, so we bought them and took them right over to his greenhouse.

Driving home through Zellwood, I pointed, “Look, there’s a hooker,” but PD did not see.

When we got back, we feasted on Loquats then PD, Zeus and I settled in to watch Fatal Attractions on the Animal Planet. It was about really stupid people who keep tigers and leopards for pets, and then are surprised when their pets try to eat them.

Our Tuesday morning Dumpster Day would have gone awry had not Plant Daddy realized that the road bubbas had blocked our driveway with Bob’s barricades. So he risked life and limb stepping out into traffic to clear a path.

Danger! Danger! Danger!
I got followed in Mt Dora after I left the bank!
I knew I was being followed because I kept crossing back and driving in loops! The white van kept following me turn for turn but at one point I came around the block behind him so he pretended to pull over to use the phone so I would come around in front again. I figured the jerk was thinking to attack me and steal my purse when I parked in my carport. So I looped up Liberty and headed to 441 to see if he’d follow me and he didn’t…Heads up you Mt Dorans!

When Plant Daddy got home from work he said, “Mom, you always see all the hookers and I never get to see any. But today I finally saw one! She was walking along the road in Zellwood with one hand behind her head. Even I can’t miss anything that obvious!”

For supper, I converted the leftover pork roast to BBQ burgers. Yum! Zeus’ friend had not eaten all his scraps so we decided to share the leftovers with the dogs. To our complete surprise, an eagle flew in on the knuckle! Then the 3 crows flew in after the little bits of gristle.

And as we were watching this, Mr. Gopher Tortoise appeared for the season!
Welcome back! And may we serve you?
Hungry Mr. Tortoise scarfed a strawberry, a bell pepper and a loquat before waddling off.

Plant Daddy fired up the tractor and rumbled east for to cultivate the figs.
I went to clean up the kitchen. As I was loading the dishwasher, I glanced out the window in time to see…

a bright green parrot fly by!

Anybody in Astatula missing a pet?

And here we are, me, Zeus and Plant Daddy, resting after a hard evening. We are watching a TV show about the history of the cultivation of figs.
Did you know they have been cultivated for more than 11,000 years!
Marco Polo is involved. Christopher Columbus is involved.
We are learning a lot.
Figs are awesome!

Figs and Sweet Potatoes in Florida 

Plant Daddy rototilled this area. We had sweet potatoes here last year, but neglected them. Very poor harvest. We have made a vow to do better...

"This time fer sher!"

So PD made a gate and we fenced off the area. We will use this new space for corn, okra and sweet potatoes.

Those twiggy looking things are the fig trees. We have neglected them too. So we made a vow...

"This time fer sher!"

This weekend the plan is to rake all the $%^&$* oak leaves and mulch heavily around the fig roots. We have microdrip irrigation on them and you'd think that would suffice, but no, still not enough of a crop to make jam. We have Turkeys and Celestes. Actually, neither, but the potential anyway.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Old Mosaics, New Garden 

I’m pleased to say that the mosaic birdhouse an occupant! We saw a small sparrow nesting there.

The Mosaic Birdbath used to sit underneath the loquats. The raccoons were always using it as a ladder to get to the fruit, so it got moved.

The Strawberry jar got its photo taken for Florida Gardening Magazine, then retired here so it will be handy to grab mint for the salad while I’m here getting tomatoes.

The Purple People Eater Mosaic Statue guards the gate, just for fun.

The tomatoes are growing and will get staked this week.

Beans are not in flower yet.

This will be the last week for Broccoli, then we need to turn the space over for squash.

The corn is going gangbusters. It has doubled in size…and, well, Plant Daddy has been pouring the fertilizer to it. He is lucky. We got 2.5 inches of rain this weekend so he didn’t burn the small plants up.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


With a cold winter then plenty of rain this spring, the Loropetalum is a blast of color.

I love Spring Pink.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Easter Vegetable? 

Is this a vegetable?

No, but I want one!

Go get these carrots at Godiva!

Friday, March 26, 2010


An epic is a long narrative poem or story presenting episodic grand adventures of the central hero. Classical epics have certain structural characteristics in common including beginning in media res, the invocation of the muse, and the statement of the epic purpose.

Video games, based on classical epics or hero adventures or mythology, always have an episode in which the hero receives special powers or magical weapons.

In story telling there are sections called the epiphany (when events have reached critical mass), or the climax (when events come to a head), or the denouement (the wrap up), etc. So I wondered what that scene was called when the hero gets equipped.

One of the joys of my life is having a writing group to ask!

According to a gamer who replied to my query, it’s called exactly that… “equipping” or “getting equipped”. She says… super heroes get equipped from his or her personal weapon/armor/gadgetsmith. When a hero goes to get his equipment he may have a place for assuming an alternate identity, like the batcave, or a phonebooth. Or he may have someone who does the outfitting, ie James Bond's Q, or Ethan Hunt from mission impossible getting his stuff from his handlers. There has been a shift towards a more stealthy inconspicuous cargo container that holds a hero/spy's cache of weapons seen in a few episodes of NCIS and the movie Lord of War, and Mr. and Mrs. Smith hid their assassin careers around the house, in the tool shed and behind the double ovens. I think it really depends on the character, what kind of superhero, and how does he or she operate. Antiheros generally rely on stealth and secrecy, whereas superheroes are untouchable and generally wish only for solitude as they prepare for missions. Spies and more everyday heroes have handlers that tend to outfit them, as they usually work for "the company." I don't think there is a general term for heroic outfitting, in gaming it’s referred to as "getting equipped" or "equipping" for the task at hand.

A creative writing teacher said that the term is “cache”. Cache is both a noun and a verb.

An English professor said nothing came to mind in terms of a term.

A poet said “depot” seemed to fit. And he wrote a cute doggerel about the Home Depot.

Ultimately, since I have never played a video game, I decided to avoid the subject in the essay I was writing lest I create an unintended problem or insult. Write what you know…

But a big thanks for all who offered help!

To paraphrase Thomas Merton…No writer is an island…

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Pachira and Bombax 

2 Pax and a Bombax

Sounds like a rap group doesn’t it?
But these are the specimen plants I installed into 15 gallon containers on the patio for the summer.

On each end of the row (with the pointy foliage) is Pachira aquatica aka Lucky Money Tree. You have probably seen this plant and didn’t recognize it. Many fast food Chinese restaurants have one displayed on the counter near the cash register. Superstition says they will bring financial fortune. I hope that is the case with mine!

The fat plant in the middle with no leaves (because I pruned it back) is Bombax ellipticum aka Shaving Brush Tree. The flower looks like an old fashioned shaving brush.

Both of these are in the Bombacaceae family. These are not true caudiciforms but I love the swollen trunks. Plants and owners come to look alike after a while.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Mystery Writers Contest! 

Crime and Punishment

Stop by this website and get a preview of some of the most notoriously famous crime scenes in U.S. History.


It belongs to the National Museum of Crime & Punishment, located in Washington, D.C. and contains excellent depictions of historically famous crime scenes along with detailed information concerning past wars, forensics, organized crime, and more.

Check out the vast amount of Crime Data at their Forensic blog.

It might help you win the next Pulse Magazine Writers Contest…

Good Luck!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Best Year Ever for Peas! 

The cool weather has been tough to take, but I have to admit, I am enjoying the peas.

I am harvesting gallons of the edible pods. Freezing them with carrotts so I'll have a nice addition to refried rice come August.

Today PD took out a row of broccoli. That also had been delicious but with the few warm days we've had, it had bolted. So out it went and this afternoon I planted 2 rows of corn. Corn is also easy to freeze and is cherished around Thanksgiving time.

We have 12 standard tomato plants and 4 pixie or patio tomatoes. And 6 cucumbers. Still too cold to put the Zucchini out, but I'm eager!

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Case of the Purloined Peperomia 

You just can’t take me anywhere…

In this case, I had gone to lunch with a friend. On exiting the restaurant, I espied 2 Peperomia plants just outside the door, in the patio. It was a cold day and a freeze was predicted for the overnight. These plants were doomed.

“Do you want one?” I asked her.

“Are you going to buy the two pots?” she asked.

“Silly girl,” I said, pocketing one leaf from each.

All winter, the two leaves sat in a pot of peat moss, enclosed in a plastic bag in my living room so that they could stay warm. And sure enough! They rooted and made babies!
I love free.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Mosaic Dolls 

It's the Purple People Eater Mosaic Doll and she now hovers in the garden near the eggplant.

Yesterday being the first warm day in months, Plant Daddy and I busted chops to get all the gardening done. Up by the house, I installed 3 large pots. Two with Pachira and the center one with Bombax. Photos as soon as we get the Dieffenbachia understory planted for a finished look.

In the back garden, I planted another row of tomatoes, harvested all the onions in that space,and installed basil in the spot. Plant Daddy fixed the fence and installed a new gate to keep the bunnies out.

I sawed half a dozen large branches off the oak tree so we could drive the cart around to that side of the garden. Plant Daddy used the tractor to haul them off to the dump pile.

After all that activity, it's a good thing I installed a keyboard on Miss E.T. there so I can call 911...Old Tired Gardener Down. Send Rescue!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Lake Festival of Reading 

Yesterday was a day of surprises.

Surprise! I can get up at the crack of dawn and be somewhere by 9:00AM!
Surprise! The event didn’t start till 10:00AM!

The event was the Lake County Library System Festival of Reading.

I had time to wander up to Publix and buy a bag lunch for later.
Surprise! They were out of sushi. So I got crab salad. Yum!

Drove back to the Bland Library and Surprise! There was Judy Buckland whom I had not seen since I was an art volunteer ages ago! Then here came two ladies I know from the Writers One Flight Up group and two ladies from Palm group.

Surprise! The first speaker was a mystery writer. Elaine Viets. Visit her website here.
Okay, sure, I’m not a mystery writer, but this lady gave a seminar called “Eight Ways to Fix Your Stalled Mystery” and it was an excellent writing primer: Use all the senses, show don’t tell, be specific not general and what’s the character’s motivation.

And, to boot, she talked about landing an agent. She said her agent receives 150 submissions per week. As we say in the South, ‘them ain’t good odds’. Forewarned is forearmed.

After lunch a panel of authors presented “The Power of Laughter”.

Delores Wilson was a hoot! She and her husband operated a tow truck service in Georgia. She reminded me of my relatives! Here's her place.

Elizabeth Sinclair talked about giving her husband the stink eye to get him to leave her alone during writing time. Visit here.

Lucienne Diver shared a lot of insight about New York publishers. Apparently they think the rest of the country is still exists in horse and buggy days. Visit her.

Mark Schweizer made me glad I had left the Episcopal Church. He’s not funny.

After the panel, I thought the event was over.
Surprise! There was one more session.

Cynthia Thomason gave a clinic! Here’s her site. Man! She was good! She writes for Harlequin…yes, a Romance Novelist…and I’ve never ever read a romance novel…but her talk was so awesome .

She covered the history of romance novels, basic plot formulas, character development, goal, motivation and conflict, how to write from synopsis. It was a short course! And only a handful of people stayed for it. Oh my! What they missed!

This whole day was free! Unless it falls under the budget axe, I’ll be at this Festival again next year!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

The Stupidest People! 

I got a photograph of the stupidest people in America today!

Would you ride a bicycle through a construction zone with heavy commercial traffic?

Liz Claiborne Glasses 

I picked out Liz Claiborne glasses. They look sorta kinda like this...

I couldn't see very well when I picked them but they felt good on my nose.

The fire alarm went off while I was getting the glaucoma check. I was thinking "Woman dies in fire at eye exam" would be tomorrow's headlines. The optometrist said it happens all the time and made no move to remove the equipment and let me out.

Thank God it was a cloudy day, making the drive home easier.

Today I want to get caught up on laundry and I have a half gallon of peas picked last night that need to be blanched and frozen today.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wearin' O the Green! 

Happy Birthday to Mom! Have a Happy Day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day to Everyone. Go drink a nice beer!
Heineken, Coors, Bud or Guiness! Drink a lot!
(I recently bought all those beer stocks in my retirement account. The more you drink, the more my retirement grows! Yay!)

On the writing front, I entered a contest recently and results were to have been announced yesterday. It is absolutely criminal not to report results on time. It's crap!
But on a positive note, I sent an inquery to a regional magazine yesterday and maybe, if the letter was good enough, I'll get called up to send the manuscript.

I am off to the eye doctor today. I am a menace on the highway...no wonder we got lost in Cordele! Got to get TRI-focals! Nargh!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

My Driveway! 

Oh No! The Road Workers chewed up my driveway this morning!

Monday, March 15, 2010

The Ides of March 

I have not come to bury Ceasar...

But to install a shoulder along the highway.

This will be good news for us when the great 78 firetruck roars up behind motorists with siren a blasting, demanding the right of way. We'll have some room to pull off.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Mt Dora Library Writers Contest 2009 

The Mount Dora Library has FINALLY FINALLY FINALLY listed the winners from the 2009 Writers Contest. Here they are…

1st place: "Member of the Pack" by Derry Sampey

2nd place: "Day of Small Things" by Vicki Buchhold

3rd place: "Fair Trade Agreement" by Melanie Griffey

1st Place: "The Husk" by Randall Cadman

2nd Place: "Precious Chopsticks" by Acacia Blossom

3rd Place: "Sisters of the Sea" by Evelyn Romano

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Road Scraper 

Before the weather turned rainy, the road crew had come by with this machine.

In one pass it scrapes up the old asphalt and sends it along a chute to a waiting dumptruck.

Easy enough...but it's 4 days later and I'm still vibrating from all the shaking, rattling and rolling that this beastly machine caused!

The Z boys worked today and made progress on their latest race car. I stayed inside, out of the wind. I put up frozen peas and carrotts and made another 2 pints of strawberry jelly! Yum!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Spring Dreams 

It’s cold and it has been raining all day. I should move to Florida where it is warm and sunny…no, wait! This IS Florida.

I drove out to the Post Office today. Mailed some shoes to the kid.

Then on to Publix. Cat food supply was empty. I had to fight the rain and go out for supplies.

There sure are a lot of houses for sale in Tangerine.
There sure are a lot of houses for sale on Clayton Street in Mt Dora.
What’s up with that? Am I seeing an unusual cluster or is that everywhere?

It was hard to resist the St Patrick’s Day green cupcakes at Publix. But I did! What’s that green dessert in my basket? Just key lime pie. Shut up.

Workers were supposed to have finished fixing the window in the office today.
No show due to weather.

I called one guy to re-screen the pool. He hasn’t called back. Probably due to weather.

I called a third guy to fix the toilet. No show due to weather. And that’s an indoor job. Sigh!

This weather is soggy, but I am cheering myself up because we got the corn planted before the rain came. Those corn stalks will be growing with vigor! I can taste them already. Sunny, yellow, happy ears of corn!

You can’t always get what you want…

But you can always get what you need…

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Tornado Warning 

What a rainy morning…and thunder, too! Haven’t heard thunder in 6 months. Still, not so thrilled to hear it today.

I turned on the TV at lunch time only to see that there was a tornado warning. One had touched down in this county. The radar indicated that a whole lot more of foul weather was on the way out of the Gulf, too.

I was supposed to have gone back to the dentist today. I never look forward to dentistry. But I actually wanted to go…my molars still ache on that left side, So I was all prepared…and then at 1:30 ..just before I was to leave the house, a huge storm blew in. I took a brief moment to call the dentist to cancel before I took emergency action.

It was truly tornadic. The sky was shades or pink and green and yellow. The wind howled up from the south then instantly down from the north. Tree limbs were snapping. Zeus headed under the pool table and I headed to the bedroom away from the oak trees that might crash down onto the roof.

It shivered and shook for several minutes, then it stopped dead still, then it did that again and again and again. Weird. About 3PM I heard a rumble. I thought it was a tornado for sure, but it turned out to be Plant Daddy. “It was so dark in the greenhouse, I couldn’t see anything, so I came home,” he said. “What’s for supper?”

Since I didn’t get out to the dentist, likewise I didn’t get to Publix. Weren’t either of us going out to the garden in the down pour. We ended up eating canned pork n beans. Blech…but any port, as they say.

We ended up having 2 ½ inches of rain in 2 hours. What a deluge!
Hope tomorrow is better weather. I gotta get to the store. We’re out of cat food!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Mosaic Dolls 

dilly doll

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Mosaic Shoes- The Collection 

bunny slipper

garden slipper and mom doll at art room

garden slipper and mom doll 2

grass slipper and driving shoe

grass slipper, bubble feet, garden slipper, bunny slipper and driving shoe

killer shoe

Oh Posh! I broke the wedgewood!

flip flop

shocking flat


grape sandal

Monday, March 08, 2010

Poetry Contest 

This is for my poet friends...

Horticulture magazine is sponsoring a poetry contest! Enter the spring Garden Verse Poetry Awards, for which there are cash prizes, and stay tuned for the next contest in the fall. Deadline is April 1.

Details here

Roses are red.
Violets are blue.
I like to garden a lot.
How 'bout you?

(Do you think that entry will win?)

Sunday, March 07, 2010

McDonald's Gets Report Cards 

It’s time to play…Rate My McDonald’s!

First up…the McDonald’s at Archer Road and I-75 …Very nice clean restaurant and excellent restrooms. Not very crowded even though it was lunch hour. We were served by a white boy who was hard to understand. What a mumble! The food was cold. I know somebody just sued McD’s because the man scalded his tongue on a fish filet, and that may be the reason mine was cold. But, for God’s sakes, Plant Daddy’s cheeseburgers were ice cold, too.
Overall grade: B-/C+

Next was a stop up the road at Cordele. This restaurant had such bad access, we thought we might have flattened our tire just getting into the driveway. Swing wide or that curb will chew up your tire. We circled the parking lot twice because we could not figure out where the door was. We guessed wrong and had a hell of a hike. The place felt sketchy. A few customers lined the drive through. No customers were inside, but a lot of people were standing on the sidewalk. Plant Daddy and I took turns going inside so one of us could guard the car at all times. The restrooms were adequate, but no paper towels. Me and the other tourist lady who had stopped had to dry our hands with napkins from the dining room. She and her husband left without a purchase. We also decided not to “reward” this McDonald’s with a purchase.
Overall grade: D

McDonald’s at Dawson GA was a terrific surprise. Dawson was a sad-looking little town and we thought this might be a sad and sticky-floored restaurant. Oh, no. So wrong! The drive through was packed. The dining room, which was the size of a postage stamp, was packed. The floors weren’t sticky. No old grease smell. The restrooms were fine and clean, no odors wafting into the postage stamp sized dining room. The kitchen was efficient, nobody was backing up. The order was correct. The hot food was hot; the cold food was cold. Bonus #1: Our server was a black teenaged girl with a page boy hairstyle who looked like she might be the next homecoming queen at Dawson High School. Bonus #2. The server opened a fresh can of Redi-Whip to fix my McFrappe.
Overall grade A++ !!!

Georgia Lotto 

While I was driving up I-85, I stopped for a pee and I bought a Lotto ticket at the place on the way out the door. I figured surely I'd win.

I imagined I'd buy a Tara style mansion and have acres of pecan groves or fields of peanuts or at the very least, a farm with a well stocked fish pond for Plant Daddy.

Well, I just checked the winning draws, and my luck in Georgia is about as good as my luck in Florida. So for today Plant Daddy and I will be staying home and planting beans so we can survive on this here hard scrabble cracker plot.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Road Trip! 

Where have you been Mosaic Mom?
I’ve been on a road trip.

Where did you go?
I don’t know, but it all looked the same.

Why did you go on a trip?
To visit my Mom!

Wednesday, March 03, 2010


I went to the dentist today because I had a toothache. I thought it had only been a year since my last check up, but it had been 2 years! Sheesh!

I got an x-ray of the stinging molar and got tapped on, scraped and poked. I was pleased to find out that I don't have an infection or cracked tooth, not a loose filling or cavity. Just receeding gums ...again. So, more flouride toothpaste and out the door!

"Can I schedule a cleaning?" I asked the desk lady.

"You'll have to have a complete set of x-rays first," she replied.

I will be getting the xrays next week, then I will get a cleaning. I'll be good to go for another 2 or 3 years!

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Writer Prizes 

I was sorry to hear that the Poetry Winner of the Mt Dora Library Writers Contest 2009 had to dun the library staff in order to get a check for his winnings. Shameful!

This week I received 2 prizes I had won from writing.

On the left is a very nice book by Alice Waters. I won this in a web contest promoting ideas for sustainable landscaping. I am looking forward to reading what looks like a thorough essay on the history of school lunches and school gardens.

On the right is the publication from Tallahassee Writers Association Contest. I took the second in Flash Fiction. (They sent the check WITH the letter of congratulations btw). I started reading this cover to cover last night. I am amazed to have been included with these writers! Wow!

It feels really really good to have your efforts rewarded!

Monday, March 01, 2010

Croton Genetics 

Here's a snapshot of some happy Croton plants.
Can you figure out which ones are related just by looking at them?

No, can't do it by sight alone. Have to use DNA. And even then it's crazy!

I've been invited to the Tallahassee Writers Association luncheon next weekend. They are going to recognize the contest winners. But that's a long ride up there. I'll have to think it over.

I will toodle over to the Mt Dora Library for the Writers Cafe tonight. I've been promised a list of winners of the 2009 writers contest! Which I will immediately share with you! Stay tuned.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

eXTReMe Tracker
Listed on Blogwise