Category Archives: Apple

Falling into Autumn


The growing season is winding down in Ireland now – for us, autumn officially starts at the beginning of August. My blueberry bushes believe it’s fall – their leaves are starting to turn. The raspberries believe it too; no more fruit to be had this year. The wild blackberries are amazingly prolific and in nearly full-fruit – any ideas on what I can do with them are more than welcome (I don’t have access to canning equipment). They are everywhere in Ireland, it’s crazy.

My cherry tomatoes are lush with fruit, but every last one is still bright green.

I also found two itty-bitty tomato plants growing out front, where I put down some of my home-made compost earlier in the year. The blighted ‘maters I had last year must have had a few viable seeds. Or maybe they are from the year before? I might dig them up and bring them inside just to see what happens. Mystery ‘maters!

Terrible pic (these are all from my iPhone this morning, and the sun doesn’t hit the back wall until late in the day). But! Can you see it? I have an ear of corn forming, finally! Of my five surviving cornstalks, this one went for gold first. I see one other that might be thinking of getting corny, too. I’m rather assuming that, like the tomatoes, they don’t have a hope in hell of ripening in time. Ah well, I still try.

My first gaillardia flower! Lovely colour for autumn, of course.

Second one, blurred, sorry! They are a bit slow to bloom, not like my rudbeckia…

This photo is weeks old. Every single rudbeckia bloom is still in place!


Of course there are some new ones.

Each Susan has her eye blackened in a slightly different way. What a terrible nickname. I’ll stick with rudbeckia – the word is much more fun to say, too.

Second sunflower! Hubby took this and has had some photoshop fun – our neighbour’s house isn’t quite that bright of an orange-red! I think we can forgive him, since the contrast is pretty damn cool.

Bloomin’ July


I have flowers! Not all of my little green friends are awake yet, but I do have my first cornflower bloom:
cornflower blue.jpg
Soon I’ll be overrun with them, so it’s good to appreciate the very first one to open. Hello!
viola mixed.jpg
My violas from seed are blooming – I expect there will be a lot more to come, as they have really increased in height this week – odd, because it is cooler and much less sunny. I think they have cat-whiskers.
lavender rose.jpg
The first lavender rosebud. It’s been a bud for days and days and days, and I couldn’t wait any longer to take a picture before it opens. I’m fascinated that the outside of the petals is a dark rosy fuchsia, but it will be so pale when open.
There’s also the dying remnants of my daffodils looking horrid in the background. And…what’s that purple blotch? Could it be? Yes! It is my first clematis bloom. Sadly it was beat to shit by the wind so that’s all you’re going to see of it. But the plant is now one year old, and over 6ft tall in places, so I expect more out if it.
French breakfast radishes.jpg
Not flowers, exactly, but my radishes are starting to bolt (make flowers) so I pulled a few. Then, oops, I left them on the kitchen counter for a couple of days and they shrivelled like prunes. Not edible. Not edible for me: but the dog loves them. Go figure.
Irish yellow iris.jpg
Do you remember the field full of yellow iris from my last post? Well, they are like a weed here, they’re everywhere right now. Including some we dug up and stuck in our own garden.

orange day lilies.jpg
First of my lilies. They always bloom before the yellow ones, and no sign of my fancy ones being ready to open, yet (I did have to save those from aphids today). I think I’ll have to split these out next year, that pot is a bit crowded.

day lilies and sweet William.jpg
What greets me outside my back door – the lilies, and Sweet William. Did I say that it was phlox? I was phloxing wrong. Sweet William. I won’t forget! Even my neighbour complemented me on these, and was surprised to learn I grew them from seed. Hahaha!

Strollin’ through the town today


Yesterday morn I took the dogeen for a walk, and I saw a lot of things that made me think about where I live as seen through a stranger’s eyes. It was a positive experience – but as walking the dog isn’t conducive to taking photos, I didn’t break out the iPhone.

So this morning, I took a walk without her – but I didn’t get to see all the same things as my walk was shorter. Sorry!

One of the very first places I come to is the church. They are painting it. Yesterday was what they could reach with a long roller, but today the heavy machinery was involved.

After the church I hit the main drag. The sun was playing peek-a-boo.

It looks so colourful like this. It’s a terrible shame that at least 1/3 of the buildings you see are empty. Some for the entire 8 years I’ve lived here, and longer.

An example – a business that has come and gone again since I’ve lived here. They sold ink. The pile of unread post inside the door is astounding, and that terrible white-wash window covering didn’t last even a few months.

Another empty business – but this one (unoccupied since well before I moved here) used to be rotting and quite the eyesore. This year they cleaned it up and put up fake window stickers to make it look like it is operational. Fair play to the for that (click and zoom in to see the fake rows of goods).

We still have a phone booth! There used to be three, but a couple of years ago they took the other two out. I have no idea what it costs for a local call – I’m afraid that it smells of urine in there. Probably not, but some things you are better off not knowing.

Another shot of Main Street, heading back home now. You could almost see the church again in the far distance on the left. Almost!

Someone’s well cool door knocker. I’m also looking for things to paint – so this one is hopefully a goer.

The former bell at the church – hubby is quite happy to tell how he “helped” get it down, back in the day. It’s all programmed bong bong bongs now, which we can hear from our house quite easily. I want to try to paint this, too.

Of course, I had a very, very, disappointed dog waiting for me when I got home. Funny now she looks like an orang-utan, isn’t it? And hey! There’s me taking the pic!

Peekaboo outtakes.


I had a few more shots from the other day, that didn’t fit in with the eye theme. But I like them anyway.

Lokii’s snake-like teeth and curly yawning tongue, while blurry, make me smile.

I’m sure there’s a term for getting the perspective all wrong. Help me out if you know it. I did it here, with the phone below his nose looking up: his schnozzola looks gigantic and he looks cross-eyed as well. It doesn’t look like Lokes any more, but it’s cute.

So I did the same thing to Spot. He just looks like he’s smiling.

I wish I could meditate like that. Hey, Dianda – if you want the last pic for your Monday caption contest, I couldn’t come up with anything clever myself!



Spot was begging me to turn on the bathroom tap yesterday, so he could have a drink. From my seat (ahem) I told him that I didn’t intend to be in the room that long, so I wasn’t going to oblige him. Being as he doesn’t understand English, he just stared at me. As he tried to convince me using all of his feline wiles – more staring – I noticed his eyes were a most unusual colour.

It’s pretty hard to take photos of a cat who is only interested in a drink, so we left the bathroom and I grabbed my iPhone and chased him around the house until he settled by the back door. His eyes were still that odd marbled shade, like agate.

Usually they are mostly yellow, with brown hints. I’d never seen them change. Maybe I haven’t been paying attention.


Of course, I can’t pay attention to Spottie-pants without Lokii-trousers showing up and demanding some face time.

His eyes never change colour, but they are still the most glorious shade of blue.

But he does a damn creepy impression of a ‘white walker’ from Game of Thrones!


Road photos


I’m kind of in limbo at the moment, mentally – getting there I hope? I’ve said enough lately to last me a while, so I thought instead of moaning, I would put up some more photos from our excursion of a few weeks ago. These are all Hipstamatic shots taken on my iPhone – not the new iPhone, the one before that, don’t ask me what it is – I just inherit the old phone when iDJ is done with it.

This is a dark group of shots, befitting my dark mind-set at the time. I still like them.

As I’ve done before, I love to take pictures of the landscape as we blast through it. We were local this time, but I think I got some good ones (out of the hundred-plus I took that day).
The sun was going down, and it was doing some fascinating things with the clouds – making ‘Jesus Rays’ in all directions. Yeah, I know – I’m not a Christian and probably shouldn’t be using that phrase. But I love it, it is perfect after seeing all those ‘artistic renderings’ that have Jesus surrounded by crazy beams of sunshine. I think I got the expression from Stephen King, but I’m not 100% sure – I read a lotta stuff.

Trees kept getting in between me and the Jesus Rays. I love how the motion of the car makes the trees look radically bent, leaning, in motion even, when it is me moving instead. Oddly, the Hipstamatic shots seem to be reversed – the angle should be to the left due to the camera’s forward motion, and it is to the left when using the straight iPhone camera.
Ahh. There’s the sky finally!
But spectacular sunsets always end…
and you have to head for home.

Dog’s Day Out


And now, for something completely different. I promised A Silver Voice a dog-related post.

Hubby and I took the dogeen on a rare car trip a few weeks ago. I took a load of pictures, and have saved a huge number for posting when the elusive round tuit appears in my pocket.

These are the ones of Neko – there’s only a few.

Her in the car – she looks goofy with her ears flat like that, but it’s because she’s a big dog in a small car and she refuses to lie down in the car! Yeah, it’s blurry. You try taking shots over your shoulder of a standing dog in a moving vehicle that’s bouncing down Irish roads.

Even goofier. Actually, to me she looks like she’s about to barf down the back of my neck. She doesn’t get carsick. Anymore.
Not since she got that halo.

Her in a thingie, in a place.

Her in a thingie in a place, looking at ‘daddy’ and wondering why she has to stand there and be good and can’t go running off to some other place with thingies she hasn’t smelled yet.

Gratuitous cat photo


Have to share this. I can’t take the credit, however – hubby took this while Spot was perched on his chest, blocking his view of the Wales/Ireland rugby match. Ireland won, by the way. 😎

I can’t stop staring at his nose… It’s just perfect. The line of fur against the pink, and the black, setting it off, and every perfect hair…I just love this pic. Amazing what an iPhone camera can do!

Growing Thing


I ran into the house few minutes ago. “Come see! Come see! Better put on shoes, it’s damp out.”

Fabulous hubby, iDJ, didn’t stop for shoes but did grab his iPhone.

“It’s over here, in the corner, you probably won’t get a picture,” says I.

I showed him a gourd I’ve managed to grow. As he was taking a pic, I was blathering away about how I didn’t know if it was a pumpkin or a courgette (zucchini). I lose track of these things, he knows well. I also was telling him how I figured out how to stop gourds from rotting on the vine – it’s called blossom-end rot and if you just manage to keep an eye out for baby fruit after the bloom has faded, you can scrape off the mushy flower with a fingernail and voila! it doesn’t get all icky and decide to die. Hey, I had to Google that one, it was killin me to have a fruit and then, suddenly, a ball of mush.

It’s still small and unidentifiable – I’m guessing it’s a courgette based on two things – I think that’s what I planted there, and pumpkin usually comes from the vine rather than right at the heart of the plant.

Look at all the other female flower ready to bloom! I might have more, yet – and there is another small one at the back that you can’t see.

Wish me luck!

Stolen Monday evening


I keep telling the hubby that I’d be more than happy to start and maintain a photo blog for him. This is why:


This was taken within the last hour, out our upstairs (cat-snot-covered) window. Wow.

Not only am I lucky to have a partner who can take such good pictures, I’m really happy I found one who can see the beauty available right outside our front door.