My GARDEN Resolutions for 2014…

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Hellebores (Photo credit: pfly)

Last January I wrote a list of resolutions based on Pioneer Woman’s post about New Years Resolutions. She and I made our lists starting with the first letters of the word “resolution”… For this year’s list I thought it would be fun to use the word “GARDEN.

Here’s what I came up with:

Go to the New England Flower Show in March.

Arrange a New England Garden Blogger’s Day here in Salem for sometime in the spring.

Ride out to visit the New England Wild Flower Society‘s garden  “Garden In the Woods” in Framingham, Massachusetts.

Dedicate one hour, three times a day to my home garden.

Expand my reach here at The Salem Garden. I’m thinking about connecting with some garden product lines and changing my look a little bit.

Notice the little things as much as possible, and take photos of them.

Yes, this is a very garden related list, but won’t it be an amazing year if I can accomplish some of these ideas?

–I’m aching to get to the Flower Show this year and the NEWFS garden has been on my list forever. I just have to make time and do it!

–I’ve been thinking a lot about how nice it would be to connect with other garden bloggers in person and I can’t really find any type of gathering here in New England. What do you think? Leave a comment or e-mail me at thesalemgarden@gmail.com if you have thoughts about getting together. It could be simple, low cost and fun!

–Now that my kids are a little bigger and we’ve settled in to the working mom situation I want to get back to my home garden with great focus. I may not make it out there three times a day but if I try to I think I’m more likely to succeed. My biggest obstacle is that once I’m out in the garden I don’t want to go back inside.

–I’ve been thinking about adding some things and changing the format here at The Salem Garden. We’ll see if that comes together in 2014.

–I see so many interesting views and details in my travels that I want to slow down and document with my camera. If will be great if I can, although there’s usually several people asking me to stop taking photos and keep up the pace, please.

Here’s last year’s list:

Rest more, I’m on the run (if not actually running) a LOT!

Eat healthier snacks (yesterday my 18 year old son said “stop making cookies mom!”)

Sleep soundly

Own every decision

Live in the present

Use my camera everywhere

Take my kids to the beach once a week (even in winter)

Increase my blogging skills

Owe no one

Next fall, plant some hellebores, I keep wanting to do that!

This was a pretty subjective list but I must say I did pretty well. Not so sure about resting and sleeping, eating healthier is always increasing, I have to remember to take my camera, blogging is coming along and with such a large family the budget is always a bit of a challenge. I still have some loose ends (like those darned hellebores) but overall we’re on a good track.

What does your list look like? Share in the comments, or feel free to comment about mine. 😉

Happy New Year!

Love, Michele

A Little Bit of Haunted Happenings

We’re right in the middle of our wonderful, amazing, scary, fun, not so scary Halloween celebration here in Salem, Massachusetts. Yesterday Michael and I left the garden (yes we do that sometimes) and ventured downtown with our youngest daughter and one of her besties to take it all in.  Haunted Happenings just gets better and better every year!  Here’s a few photos from our visit.  Be sure to check out the photography here on the Social Palates facebook page as well.  I absolutely love John Andrew’s work.  He captures Salem in a way that no one else can!

Happy Halloween from the Salem Garden!

Click on any image to enlarge and view as a slideshow

My Lavender Is Loaded…

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With bumble bees of course, and they are amazing! I’ve been kind of obsessed with these creatures this week. On Monday we discovered that our lavender plant at work was buzzing with them so the people that I work with and I have been enjoying them a lot. We’ve been watching them hard at work and talking about different types of insects and how important they are to our garden.  We even took photos with our ipad and published our own blog post about them. When I got home I found myself doing the same thing here so I spent half an hour yesterday trying to get the perfect macro bee shot. Photographing bees is a lot like taking pictures of chickens, their always in motion so it’s tough to get it right.  I think I’ll try using a tripod today and fiddle with the camera settings a bit more.  

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Unfortunately it’s becoming increasingly clear that bees are dying by the millions because of pesticide use.  This article from the Boston Globe Magazine a few Sundays ago details one study and speaks to how difficult it is for the research to be taken seriously.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/magazine/2013/06/22/the-harvard-scientist-linking-pesticides-honeybee-colony-collapse-disorder/nXvIA5I6IcxFRxEOc8tpFI/story.html

Check out the links to other articles just below too, then slow down and take a few minutes to watch the bees at work today.

Enjoy everything!

Michele

Salem’s Fourth of July in 130 Seconds

Yes, I’m always raving about the wonderful fireworks that we have here in Salem but do I ever get a photo of them? No way!  I try, but I’m just not there yet. So here’s a great video of our 4th of July celebration as it unfolds. If you look closely your sure to see Michael and the kids walking on the wharf 😉 .  Next post will be about gardening, I promise!    Enjoy!  Michele

Where I’ve Been

Here’s the view from my chair. This is my second favorite place to spend time in in the summer (of course the garden is first). I’m heading back down there now for the third day out of four!

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When you get to Waikiki Beach (in Salem, Massachusetts) just turn left and walk about twenty five steps… I’ll be there!

Enjoy everything!

Michele

There’s No Place Like Salem Willows On the 4th!

We had our annual 4th of July visit and trek through the Willows neighborhood this morning. The decorations, the people and the party are all awesome! It’s so much fun because the whole neighborhood and lots of us from the rest of the city come out to enjoy the parade, the scenery and each other. We met our good friends, took a walk and had a relaxing pizza lunch under the willow trees. Tonight we’ll all head back downtown for the fireworks. Check out the great houses, beautiful views and happy people….

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We love our 4th of July celebration here in Salem, Massachusetts!

Happy Independence Day!

Enjoy everything!

Michele

A Quick Derby Garden Update, With a Stop at West Beach

Here’s the Derby Garden when I blogged about it on March 26thIMG_0415

Here it was on Sunday. It’s greened up beautifully. I’m sure that it’s at an even different stage now, a few days later.
IMG_0938I love these old chimneys. Maintaining them here on the waterfront is probably quite challenging.IMG_0958 This was taken by my littlest girl. We girls were out for a ride.IMG_0947 Aren’t these tulips great? Donna Seger at Streets of Salem posted a photo of them in bloom on May Day and I was sure that I was going to miss them. I was so happy to see that they were still going strong on Sunday.IMG_0925 Beautiful peach columbine, coming into bloom.IMG_0924I’m not sure about this plant’s identity… does anyone know what it is? Let us know!
IMG_0922Before the garden we stopped at the beach for a few minutes. It was windy and cold but still a nice little break in the busy weekend. Sorry, no kid pictures… girls don’t always want to be photographed. That’s okay, neither do I.IMG_0916

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I thought that the view might make you smile 🙂

Summer is coming~

Enjoy Everything!

Michele

Militia, Daffodils, Ants and Sunsets

Here’s a little bit of my weekend, the part spent with camera in hand.

Our first stop was at the muster down on the common. We got there at the very end but still saw soldiers marching in formation. As the daughter of a career army master sergeant I get a thrill whenever I see this, which isn’t too often these days.
IMG_0562There were horses…IMG_0565The colonial militia men..IMG_0571And tanks that fired. What is it about boys and tanks? He loves this stuff, it’s just in him. Maybe it’s a piece of his grandfather.IMG_0579Of course we had to visit the playground for a minute. It was very cold and windy. My older kids played here every day when we lived a few doors down.IMG_0587We checked into the Derby garden and found that I was correct last week, this is indeed a daffodil! I thought so!IMG_0600Here’s the next mystery plant… I think this might be a tulip, believe it or not. I’ll check back soon.IMG_0608I spent a good twenty minutes on Saturday night photographing this ant. Perhaps I need to get a life, lol.IMG_0632They are fascinating creatures if you stop and look at them. I started this project in my quest to figure out where their coming into my kitchen from. I continuously look down to see an ant looking up at me. They are really driving us all a little bit crazy.IMG_0634Of course, by the end of the twenty minutes the ant was named Wilbur and had a framed portrait in sepia finish. I think I need help here 🙂IMG_0626Out on the deck last night my little guy took this photo of one of thousands of planes heading into Logan over our house. Their so close that we can see the landing gear come down.IMG_0646But to our left we were really enjoying this.IMG_0647I’m hoping that this helps anyone who’s still recovering from the ant photos.
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Today it’s going to be in the sixties with less wind. I’m hoping/planning to get out and plant these!

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Seed packets are buy one, get one free at Home Depot! It’s a great time to stock up on anything that you need.

Happy Monday!

Enjoy everything!

Michele