Friday, February 27, 2009

MEN Winner

I didn't start out with a title that said Men Winner. I actually meant to say Mother Earth News Winner, and ended up having to shorten it a bit. When I noticed the acronym, I said why not? I "won" my man 42 years ago.

Seriously though, the winner of the Mother Earth News magazine subscription has been chosen! She has been contacted and has responded. Her name is listed as Princess Golden Hair. Her number was chosen randomly and I really liked what she had to say.

I used to read Mother Earth years ago before the Internet was even out there. It's only gotten better. I'm really interested in the organic companion gardening that's because i will be doing more organic gardening in the coming years

So many of you had such great comments. I'm sure Mother Earth News will find them very interesting and helpful in forming some of the upcoming articles. The editors and staff love reading your thoughts and ideas.

Stay with me. I have quite a few neat giveaways coming up at both Thyme for Herbs and An Herbal Bedfellow. The Herb Companion Subscription Giveaway is still going on at An Herbal Bedfellow. Pop over and enter if you haven't done so. It expires on Saturday at midnight.


Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I'm so Blue!!



I'm so blue and so is the TARP!!! Can you see it?
If you've been following along, you know that my house is up for sale. Part of the selling point is the garden and backyard. Pictures of my beautiful garden are on the Internet.
Here's the thing. My backyard neighbor died a few years ago, and her house finally sold. We were thrilled! Maybe the market is moving again. The price was comparable to our house -- good news for us. But I never dreamed that my new neighbors would park a trailer covered in a BIG BLUE TARP as close to the property line as humanly possible (that's my tree in front of the trailer and we own about four feet on the other side of the trunk) And I can't do one thing about it. It's all perfectly legal. How can I complain when we haven't even met them yet?

I'm finally emotionally ready to move and I'm sure this is going to hurt our yard appeal! Am I being a spoiled brat? Too selfish, only thinking about my own life? How would you handle this? Or should I leave it alone so I can get a good night's sleep?
Let me know your thoughts and ideas. I need another gardener's insight.



Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Mother Earth News Giveaway



When I found out that I would be hosting a Mother Earth News subscription giveaway, I was so excited for you!
I have been a reader of Mother Earth News for many years, but I admit there are times when funds are low and I don't see an issue for a while. Maybe the same thing has happened to you. Have you looked at it lately? In the last few months, they have really stepped it up. It has something for everyone; gardeners, farmers, cooks, and handymen. I love the feel of the cover and pages. And the pictures are so amazing! I was inspired on so many levels.

In this one magazine you can learn so many new things: organic gardening, natural health and herbs, new recipes, Do-it-Yourself projects, green living and renewable energy ideas. The newest issues runs the gamut from Benefits of Cork Floors to How to Raise Chickens in Your Back Yard.




If you just dropped in to say hello, this is your lucky day. I am offering you a chance to win a one year subscription to Mother Earth News!

1. Just visit the Mother Earth News website and come back here to leave a comment about something new you discovered on their site.

2. For a second chance to win, sign up as an e-mail subscriber with Feedburner or become a Google Follower (see sidebar.) Then leave a second comment telling me you have subscribed or are already a subscriber.

3. If you're not a blogger, be sure to leave your contact e-mail address like this to avoid spammers: pianananna(at)gmail(dot)com. If I can't reach you, your name will be disqualified, and I will draw again.
Winners will be chosen by Random.org.
Email addresses will not be shared with any third parties.
Open to US residents only, 18+.
This contest ends February 25th at midnight EST. Good Luck!


Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Burpee Seed Winners

Five winners were chosen by Randomizer to win the Burpee Money Garden Seeds. You might rememebr that Deb was also a winner of a Burpee Hat given in a previous giveaway. Some people have all the luck!

Here's what the winners had to say about Burpee seeds.


Kerri from Colors of the Garden said:
My favorite is Bush Snap Bean Heavyweight. Thanks for hosting this great giveaway!
I always enjoy your beautiful music :)


Deb from Mountain Musings said:
I love your garden giveaways! I would pick the Bell Pepper..what a delightful packet of veggies Burpee is giving away. Thanks for the chance.

Penny from Penny Lane Boutique said:
We love tomatoes and carrots...thanks so much for this awesome giveaway!
Blessings!
Penny

Karly said:
My favorite would be the Garden Pea Super Snappy. (Even the name sounds snappy!) Thanks for the opportunity

Nancy said:

I enjoy all the vegetables offered in the packet. Hands down, my favorite is the large Steak Tomato! One of the most delicious things on earth must be a home-grown , freshly picked tomato with maybe a sprinkle of salt on top. You either have to eat it over the sink or bending over outside because they are so ripe that the juice will run everywhere! Yummy!

Burpee will be sending your seed packets soon so you can once again dream about spring planting.
Stay with me now; I have more garden giveaways coming.






Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Didn't I Tell You?



I hate to say so but didn't I tell you? Yes, there was a thaw. But as usual it was Mother Nature's way of fooling us all. Just a little tease of what's to come in another 6 weeks or so. This is what we woke to this morning. Disgusting!





Now for some good news! I have chosen the winners of my two One World One Heart Giveaways.
Sheila at The Quintessential Magpie won the miniature polymer clay veggies.
Ladybug at Living in the Light I Find is the winner of the Red Hat Society Quilt Pattern.
Both have been contacted and have responded already. Congratulations, ladies, your items are in the mail!

I encourage you all to stay with me. I have some more really exciting giveaways coming very soon! I don't mean to tease you like Mother Nature, but gardeners especially are going to love at least one of them.

Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Spring Thaw? - Thankful Thursday


I've been so busy that I haven't had a chance to take part in Thankful Thursday hosted by Rhondi at Rose Colored Glasses.

It's February so we know for a fact that winter isn't over yet. BUT if you live anywhere near Michigan, you know what a January Thaw is. (That's when there is an unexpected warm-up and all of the snow disappears, only to come back again until the end of winter.) Well, we didn't get a January Thaw this year. But I believe it is here now in February. First the temps went up, then the snow melted, then the rains and winds came. Now, it almost feels like March!! Whatever is going on we'll take it and be thankful. The air smells like spring, and I can actually see some perennials popping up. I know they will soon be buried in snow again, but there's always hope that this year will be different. And February IS a short month after all. All I know for sure is that today, I am thankful for the anticipation of the spring to come and the rebirth of the earth.
For more Thankful Thursday posts, click on hte daisy in the sidebar.


Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Burpee Money Garden Seed Giveaway

I'm so excited. My Burpee friends are ready to host another giveaway.
This giveaway ties right in with your spring gardening plans as well as helping out in this tough economy. How's that for versatility?

Burpee has compiled a grouping of 6 packets of seeds that would cost $20.00 if purchased individually, and they call it the Money Garden. Burpee says these seeds produce $650.00 worth of vegetables. Now that's what I call a savings!
The best part is that there will be Five Winners Chosen! That's right, five of you have a chance to get this wonderful package for free.

The giveaway ends on Saturday February 14th at midnight. Here's how to enter:


1. Visit Burpee Co. and leave a comment telling me which of the six vegetable seed packets offered in the Money Garden grouping is your favorite.

2. For a second chance to win, sign up as an e-mail subscriber with Feedburner or become a Google Follower (see sidebar.) Then leave a second comment telling me you have subscribed or that you are already a subscriber.

3. If you're not a blogger, be sure to leave your contact e-mail address like this to avoid spammers: pianananna(at)gmail(dot)com. If I don't have a way to reach you or you don't respond in three days, your name will be disqualified, and I will choose another contestant.




Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Love Potions - X rated!!


Doubt thou the stars are fire; doubt that the sun doth move; doubt truth to be a liar; but never doubt I love. ~Hamlet


Everyone wants to be in love or to be loved. Valentine's Day is on Saturday and naturally our thoughts turn to love. The ancient Druids thought they had it all figured out. They just served up a cup of this tea on a waxing moon followed by a chant, and there you have it. Instant love. It looks like it might work, with the right partner, if for no other reason than the relaxing qualities of the herbs. A little soft music and candles and you're all set. Go ahead and try it -- I dare you!





LOVE POTION TEA

1 pinch of rosemary
2 teaspoons of black tea
3 pinches thyme
3 pinches nutmeg
3 fresh mint leaves
6 fresh rose petals
6 lemon leaves
3 cups pure spring water
Sugar
Honey





Now here's the X-rated part: The following herbs are said to have more than just "romantic qualities." If you're really ready to go wild, brew teas or make a wonderful meal including any of these herbs, and watch out!! You never know what could happen!

Cloves and clove oil -- enhances physical beauty
Dill -- stirs sexual longing
Mint -- elicits sexual desire
Rosemary -- awakens sensual desire
Fennel -- awakens long lost love
Lovage casts love spells of erotic love

I'm interested to know if you achieve what you set out to do, but I know it's kinda personal (wink)




Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Valentines Winner Announced



I loved reading your Valentines stories. For me, it was the best giveaway I have done in a long time. Some were funny, and some romantic. You all did a great job in entertaining me.
My favorite story, by far, was Sharon's and that's why I chose her as the winner. In my book, laughter and love go hand in hand.
Sharon has been notified and has already responded. Congratulations Sharon! You are a lucky woman, indeed!

Here is what Sharon wrote:

My husband and I had just started dating a few months before our first Valentines Day. He was a printer, and I had asked for some personalized stationery a couple of weeks earlier. On Valentines Day, he gave me the box of stationery and said, "Here's your order", and he never said "Happy Valentines Day" or anything. I mumbled, "Thanks" and went to work, sad that he hadn't said or given me anything for our first Valentines Day. When I got to work, I decided to look at my personalized stationery to see how it had come out, and inside the box was a cute little white teddy bear holding a red rose, a pretty cloth basket decorated in hearts and filled with red foil-wrapped chocolates, and a small box wrapped in red paper! Inside the little box was a necklace with a heart-shaped ruby!!! My mouth fell open and I yelped and tears sprang to my eyes immediately!! My co-workers stared at me! lol! I called my husband-to-be and thanked him profusely and we laughed and laughed!!


Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

I'm Am Humbled and Honored



Almost two weeks ago I was very honored to have been given the Proximity Award by my dear blogger friend Bebe at Peaches and Dreams. Bebe has been a long time visitor at my sites and I on hers. We have a lot in common and that I've found is the fun of blogging. Sometimes you long for that perfect friend who likes all of the same things you do. Blogger friends can be that very special friend because we never find any of their faults and only see their goodness. Bebe is just such a person, and believe me, she is loaded with good qualities and Southern charm.

More about the award ~ "This blog invests and believes in the Proximity ~ nearness in space, time, and relationships. These blogs are extremely charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in prizes or self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give attention to these writers! Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of their award."
~~~~~

I've felt badly for not acting on this sooner but I wanted to savor it a little and also to choose my recipients carefully. I've decided to select a variety of my blogging friends; some new, some old, gardening, cooking, foreign, and domestic.

1. Sheila at Quintessential Magpie - South USA. She's always right there, a real reader (not a scanner) and ready to leave a comment of encouragement and fun.

2. Mildred at Nalley Valley - Georgia. Mildred and I share a love of antiques, gardening and herbs. I always enjoy her comments.

3.Cathy at Outside In I've recently discovered Cathy's blog and I really enjoy reading about indoor plants. I find her blog refreshing, taking me back to the days when my house was crammed with indoor plants.

4. My Mother's Garden Florida. This blog has fantastic photos and fabulous garden art. Such creativity amazes me. You might enjoy a visit to her Etsy Store.

5. flowrgirl at Live to Garden- Michigan. I couldn't leave a fellow Michigander off the list. Flowrgirl is a newbie since January '09, but you sure can't tell it. She has a variety of interesting posts, that keeps me coming back, plus she like daylilies.too.

6. Tyra at The Greenhouse in Tyra's Garden- Sweden. I've enjoyed Tyra's blog for years. We started out about the same time and I was fascinated with gardens in other countries. Her blog has always been classy and tasteful.

7. Lucy at Loose and Leafy - England. Lucy's blog is again in another country across the ocean and that is what makes this Proximity Award so special. The Internet has brought us all closer and allowed us to make friends around the world. I've enjoyed getting to know Lucy and her garden.

8. The Soup-aholic is a favorite cooking blog. I visit often even though I don't have time to always leave a comment, and for that I apologize. Her recipes have me salivating by just reading them. I always find a new and exciting soup to try.

So go forth and spread the award. Or if you feel that you don't wish to partake, please accept my award with no strings attached. You all deserve it !


Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Hobby Greenhouses

I'm interested in greenhouses, but I admit to not knowing a thing about them. What is the right choice for me? Will I get any benefit from owning one or will it be just another storage space? I wanted to make the right choices for my next yard and garden needs, so I asked a guest writer for CSNSheds to tell me a little about them. I hope it helps you, too.



Year Round Hobby Gardening


For many people a hobby greenhouse is a great way to relax, relieve stress, and for some it can be quite a therapeutic experience. There are many reasons to start your own greenhouse. Whether you are looking for something to do in your spare time, a new passion to help enrich your life, or a stress reliever after a long day of work, maintaining a hobby greenhouse has countless mental health benefits.


There are many types of people that can benefit from the therapeutic elements of tending a greenhouse. People that are recovering from serious health issues, have recently dealt with a great loss, and even people that have recently retired can all use a greenhouse to help improve their moods and the quality of their lives.





Small hobby greenhouses are also easy to set up in your yard. Depending on the type of greenhouse you choose, you can either install it yourself, or with the help of few friends or family members. Hobby greenhouses come in 3 basic styles. Portable, glass, and polycarbonate hobby greenhouses are the most popular choices.





Portable greenhouses are usually made of plastic and are not large enough for you to enter. They are meant to be opened from several different sections to reach all of the plant life that is housed inside. Due to the size of this type of greenhouse, all gardening tools would have to be stored in an outdoor shed to help conserve space. Portable greenhouses are excellent for beginners who aren’t quite ready to invest the money in a larger structure.



Glass and polycarbonate greenhouses are usually large enough for a person to enter and walk around inside. They also offer increased visibility and can accommodate larger plants and in some cases even small trees. If you plan to put your greenhouse in an area known to have extended periods of intense sunlight, a polycarbonate greenhouse would be a better choice as they are better at diffusing light than their glass counterparts. This helps cut down on the amount of sun damage that can affect the plant life inside.


No matter what type of greenhouse you decide to purchase, be sure to check with the zoning board in your town before erecting a unit. This is especially important in the case of larger more permanent structures. Certain towns and cities may have rules about constructing sheds or greenhouses in your yard. You certainly don’t want to take the time and effort to build your own greenhouse only to be forced to take it down.





Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Fast Growing Trees Nursery

I usually don't do much blogging in the winter. As a matter of fact, last year I let my blog go dormant for a few months. This year I've tried to keep it going with some different ideas including giveaways.
I'm in such a turmoil now about whether or not I'll have room for a garden at a new house and what kind of trees will be there already? Will I need to purchase new ones? What will the lighting and soil conditions be? So many questions! But they won't be answered until we find the right house. I'll have to be patient.

So until I have something more specific to write about, I will occasionally be inviting in some guest writers. Today I am featuring a writer form Fast Growing Trees Nursery.

Spring Blooming Trees

How dull our lives would be if we didn’t have spring flowering trees each year to renew our excitement for living!




Right when you think you can’t take one more ice storm or one more week of gray skies, you notice Cleveland pears and Okame cherries starting to show a tease of color! It’s not too long before Cherry blossoms brighten up your day. Yoshino and Kwanzan cherry trees bloom in succession. These are the beautiful trees that grace our Nation’s Capital each spring. For centuries, countries of the Orient have praised cherry blossom time with art and music; a cultural icon.

As the dogwood trees and crabapples start to bloom, the redbuds and fruit bearing trees join them. This nonstop show of soft color goes on for almost three months.



The Grand Finale of spring blooming trees is the Royal Empress Paulownia. With light gray bark and lavender, trumpet shaped blooms; this amazing tree is a traffic stopper. The fragrance is so special that it is one of the ingredients of Chanel #5 Perfume. It blooms before the foliage appears, with thousands of blossoms each spring, lasting for 4 – 6 weeks.

Spring blooming trees provide us with the joy that each year is special and beautiful. And don’t forget the summer shows as well… we have crape myrtles blooming all summer long!



Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.

Monday, February 2, 2009

A Nostalgic Valentine's Day Giveaway



I love old Valentine's Day cards. I still have many from my grade school days signed 1958. (Oops, I just told my age!)

I've collected Victorian cards for many years and on occasion I buy new cards that look Victorian and have Victorian sentiments. I don't find too many that are gentile and poetic anymore.
A few years ago, my husband gave me one that had this phrase printed in it:

I never knew before such a love as you have made me feel..........KEATS

It's possible he picked out the card for the pretty front and never read the poetry included, but I choose to think not. Isn't that what most women want? To think their man is romantic? So on this special day of the year, February 14th, I'll go with that sentiment.

Well, as most of you know, I am moving. That means heavy duty cleaning out of drawers and extra "stuff." Now I don't consider my Valentines extra stuff, but I did notice that I have a LOT of them and some are duplicates sooooo.......


I am offering six of them to you as a giveaway. Here's two ways to win:

1. Leave a comment telling me about your favorite Valentine's Day (romantic or funny)
2. For a second chance to win, sign up as an e-mail subscriber with Feedburner or become a Google Follower (see sidebar.) Then leave a second comment telling me you have subscribed or are already a subscriber. The second comment is important in order to gain two entries.
3. If you're not a blogger, be sure to leave your contact e-mail address like this to avoid spammers: pianananna(at)gmail(dot)com. If I can't reach you, your name will be disqualified, and I will draw again.

This contest ends on Friday, Feb.6th at midnight EST. I will choose a winner based on my favorite answer on Saturday. You will have three days to contact me. Good Luck! I can't wait to hear your stories!!!

Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Happenstance House -- A journal about my Victorian home and all of it's contents.