Friday, April 1, 2011

On the Road Again...

It's been a while since I've posted some 'meaty' content (no offense vegan friends).  March seemed like a dormant month -- here I was, all jacked up for the 2011 season, but the whole month was primarily grey & 35 degrees (Fahrenheit).  Don't get me wrong, I love the sound of the Robins and Cardinals singing in the morning - they just have a better outlook than I have recently!

So it became evident it was time for a "Road Trip".  My gal pals and I packed up and headed south to Kentucky again to visit my "Illinois Ex Pat" friend, with the promise of warm temps and sunny skies.  We got there just in time for... grey skies and 39 degree temps - but there were adventures to be had, with flora and fauna to be enjoyed.

Besides being one of my inspirations in gardening, my friend is also a self-proclaimed "bird nerd".  As you can see by the collage above - her backyard was a bird retreat for many.  Even with the colder weather, her gardens were at least 2 weeks ahead of anything up here in IL.  Her Hyacinth was blooming profusely and the Pasque Flower looked lovely.  The most intriguing plant just starting to bud, was her Wisteria.  To me, it unabashedly says "southern grace" and she has great aspirations for it's future growth - extending along the backyard.

The 1st annual for my friend - Million Bells, while
Pasque Flower, Wisteria, Hyacinth, Rhododendron and Clematis are up 
Of course the day of our trip home, the skies were clear and it was already 52 degrees as we were leaving in the morning.  What we couldn't have predicted was the eclectic find just down the highway....  Yard Art, as far as the eye could see!   Now yard art is certainly a personal preference - from the quaint to the exotic, but it usually stimulates conversation.

(If you haven't had a chance to stop by Along Life's Highway, you are missing a genre of entertainment you didn't know you needed!  The blog sponsors the 'Yard Art Game', where "field reporters" submit photos of yard art they come across.  [A special thanks to Rosey at Dung Hoe - who originally introduced her blog readers to this treasure.])

White River Yard Art
(the link to their website: Yard Art)
We had to stop! (Ok, I did - and made my girlfriends join me.)  I asked permission to take photos and post their contact information.  You can choose the artwork either finished or unfinished.  It's up to you and your creativity.

So, we had a blast and each walked away with a memento of the visit.  I am boisterous and bawdy (at times), but when it comes to yard art, I'm a bit timid.  This is my 1st piece of concrete yard art....

Sweet & innocent - just like me!
Next time, I think I'm going to be a bit more bold.  I'm kinda diggin' the Easter Island Head totem!  Wonder what the neighbors would say?!?  It would be quite an unique statement in the middle of my Cottage garden - don't you think!

Happy April 1st!  I won't say I'm going to miss March 2011 weather - but of course today is grey and 36 degrees, with rain.  So that's a bit "different"!  Happy Gardening......   (...come on sunshine!...)


  1. Sweet and innocent?! You don't fool me and I'm thousands of kms away :D What a place that looks to be!
    I do love the photo of that poor cold looking little Cardinal, he doesn't look impressed with the weather either!

  2. The Easter Island guy caught my eye immediately. He would make a nice addition to any cottage garden. Good to hear you are such a great influence on getting your gal pals into the yard art scene.

  3. Boisterous and bawdy are my favourite combination in a friend! :D

    Even if you'd gone even further South, you would have hit 'cold'. I can't believe I had to have the heat on so much this last week. Next week is supposed to be in the 80' should come back down :D

  4. Gippy - you are too intuitive!! ;D I noticed that Cardinals have different coloring in different regions of the US. Up here in Illinois, they are a deep red; down in Kentucky (a 6 hr drive south) the Cardinals are a brighter scarlet - almost iridescent. (beautiful either way!)

    Tufa - I'm convinced now, next time I make the pilgimage to KY, that Easter Island totem is MINE! :)

    Kyna - Boisterous & bawdy are 2 of the reasons your blog is so fun!! (Great minds!) ...80 degree temps?!!...(omg) I'm so there!

  5. Shyrlene, it won't be too much longer...hang in there! It is always so much fun to visit friend's gardens. It gives such a sense of who they are and it's always such a source of inspiration. Send the rain our way!

  6. Well, I have got to get me a green dinosaur! Maybe I could finally win Helena's Yard of the Month award!

    I hope your spring arrives in full force soon. You have waited long enough!

  7. I like your bird nerd friend's feeders and all her little visiting birds. Her kitty statue is cute, but I am a little sour on cats, or should I say my orchids wish them gone. The garden art from your excursion with friends, well, no exotic beasts in my yard, but I do like your cherub.

  8. Some crazy looking pieces of yard art there. I reckon you should go back and get that Easter Island Head, that the one I would have come home with anyway!

  9. What a great road trip! Even if it was the same grey and cold as you were trying to avoid. What a wonderful collection of birds in your friend's garden. And the yard art! I am a sucker for concrete anything!

  10. Amazing yerd art!! Thanks for sharing

  11. Cat - things are looking up, it's going to be in the 50's & low 60's this week! (Yay!) We'll see what we can do about sending you some rain...

    Deb - large concrete dinosaurs, in yard art - I never knew, until this trip?!! ;D

    GWGT - thanks for the nod to the Cherub! She (he?) was a 'must have'. Cats & plants in the same place (?)... no good can come of that. (But then I am the "Mean Mom" who won't say 'yes' to animals)

    Sunny - it's a "for sure" now; I have to have that Easter Island Head! (now I just have to decide what size - that will fit in my truck)

    Holley - it was a great trip! I never knew I 'needed' concrete yard art - now I have seen the light! (no painted Chewbacca though)

    Indoor - thanks!

  12. Wonderful photos, Shyrlene! I'd love the Easter Island guy in my yard, too! Very cool.
    Have to admit, I like that Giraffe, too!
    Lovely picture of the Cardinal. I really miss seeing them. Always saw them in Toronto, but unfortunately, they don't seem to visit this far north, in central Ontario.
    Hope you're having good weather! Enjoy!

  13. K - Big thanks! I never realized that Cardinals only live so far north. Even as a kid, living up in the NE part of the US (near Burlington VT) - there were always Cardinals. (Weather is warmer, I'm past due for a 'walk about' in the garden!)

  14. Great road trip, I can think of nothing more fun then traveling and visiting with my buddies. I'll post your wonderful finds tomorrow on my site.

    Thanks for the mention.

    I like your sweet angel. We all have to start somewhere.

  15. LifesHwy - Gal pal trips are the best (we laugh until we cry)! You and my gal pals have opened up a whole new world for me, with this 'yard art' stuff... but sorry, no scary-eyed baby dolls!

  16. Slippery slope, Shyrlene, slippery slope. It might start with a cherub, but it leads to flamingos, elephants, gnomes in cars... Sounds like a fun road trip!

  17. Janet - You have such a great sense of humor! (I'll try to hold off on the elephants, but the flamingos may just be too hard to resist!!)

  18. We want to see the Easter Island Head. In your garden soon.

  19. Shyrl - love your photos and comments about my yard and birds. Y and I have since seen Northern Flickers and the 1st hummingbirds arrived today. Clematis buds are SO fat - they are going to burst open any day. Bought 5 Red Huskers yesterday, creeping flox today. Bridge is finished, island cleared out, planted a bunch of hummingbird vine at the base of many trees - should be beautiful!

  20. As far as the birds/plants/cat cats are indoors and love watching the birds. Only have indoor plants that she doesn't like to eat. I love kitty cats!!

  21. Anonymous - it's always a treat to see what's new & blooming in your gardens! I envy your plant purchases!! I gave in to the urge and bought Sunflower and 'Forget-Me-Not' seeds just to satisfy the need for new plant life... I'm SUCH a guppy! xo


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