Saturday, May 24, 2014

Changes in our Yard

This photo above is one of the last photos I took of the cottonwood trees we had in our back yard. 
The tree on the left side of the screen was planted first on Mother's Day in 1995, and it was the bigger of the two trees.  The tree on the right was planted about one year later.  They were both pretty big trees when we planted them and they grew big very quickly over the years.

We loved that these trees provided us so much shade and privacy but they are messy trees. We even had the "cottonless" version of cottonwood trees, but these trees drop lots of messiness throughout the Spring, Summer and Fall (oh, the Fall... so many, many leaves).   These trees were planted so close to our house in the narrowest point of our back yard. We have a wide backyard but the narrowest part of the yard is the spot where we planted these trees.

Behind Sandy and the red lounge chair, you can see some of the biggest cottonwood tree.
It was really big.
A few weeks ago, we had the cottonwood trees removed.  It was a big job. It took the tree surgeon and his helper four days to get the job done. After that, Ron and Zach bagged and removed about 55 huge bags of tree debris which primarily came from the stumps being ground down. We thought we might be able to plant a nice pine tree in the space between where the cottonwood trees once stood but the area was so incredibly root bound we couldn't hardly dig down an inch before running into a web of roots. We decided to have a pergola built over the patio to give us some shade and some privacy.  The lawn was looking really rough in the spot where the trees were removed and so many other place.  We ended up hiring a landscaping company to put in a new lawn and they really did an amazing job.  I think our yard looks better than it did nearly 22 years ago.  They were able to till up and level the soil.  The new sod lawn even covers up roots which were showing around our existing trees. The soil had deteriorated in a number of spots along the fence line and they built the soil up in those area.  Our backyard looks so pretty now.  We are looking forward to spending more time out there, especially when the pergola gets built later in July.
 When Zach got home and saw the new lawn, he asked, "Is it real?" 
It kind of looked like "astro-turf" when it first was first put in. 
It's raining right now. The lawn is lovin' it!

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Definitely Diagonal Shawl

Definitely Diagonal Shawl
Knit in Berroco "Remix"

I signed up to get daily emails from "Knit Picky Patterns from All Free Knitting".  It's a little overwhelming to get so many patterns each day but I found this pattern and decided to make this with a ball of Berroco "Remix" in my stash of yarn.  The pattern link is here:

I did NOT check the yarn requirements very closely and it turned out that I did not have enough yarn. I did not complete the recommended number of lace pattern repeats and I ended up adding an eyelet border at the end.  The shawl is knit from the bottom of the triangle and you start with just a few stitches. Then, every so often, you cast on five stitches at the beginning of the row.  This results in a scalloped sort of edge along the sides.  My yarn is rather "tweedy" and I like the look but I think a little of the design is lost since the yarn is so heavily textured.  This was a super fun and quick knit. I had a hard time putting it down.  The pattern designer has a lot of free designs and I look forward to trying more.  Here's the LINK to the designer's blog. 

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Saturday walk with the puppies

The puppies and I went for a four mile hike today on Tunnel Drive. We only saw one man walking and three folks on bikes. Practically had the place to ourselves. 

I had a little Kodak Fever so I decided to share my favorite photos. 

In 22 years of living in Southern Colorado, I've never seen such wildflowers in the Spring. 

Huge bird (Turkey Vulture?) soaring in the sky.  Mist hanging above the distant hilltops. 

These remind me of Columbine but I am not sure. 

The picture above is my very favorite from the day. 

Remnants of the water system which runs through the Royal Gorge. 

If we follow these tracks, eventually we'd be at the Royal Gorge Bridge. 

I hope you enjoyed seeing these photos. Our hike was a great start to the day. 

Monday, May 12, 2014

Happy Mothers Day... A day late!

Hope you all had a great Mother's Day. I wanted to share some pictures from a nice hike I took with the dogs the day BEFORE Mother's Day. 

Keep scrolling down and THEN I'll show you some photos from the day AFTER Mother's Day. 

And now TODAY. May 12, 2014

What a difference a day makes.
Springtime in Colorado!

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Rainbow Trout Striped Infinity Scarf

Striped Infinity Scarf  *** Pattern by Michelle Hunter
Here's the pattern link:

I have made this pattern a number of times. It's a very enjoyable knit and it's easy to pick up and put down.  This time I used one ball of Crystal Palace's "Mini Mochi" in the colorway "Rainbow Trout".

I love this yarn and I love this pattern.  It's nice to have some time to knit.  Pillow making has been keeping me busy but not too busy.