Friday, March 30, 2007

Sandra Betzina Pattern Recall - Vogue 2913 & 2948

Sandra Betzina announced on her website her two most recent pants patterns - 2913 and 2948 - have been recalled and pulled from the stores and Vogue's website. The new corrected versions will be available after April 1. Evidently the Vogue patternmakers tried to "Vogue-ize" Sandra's Today's Fit better fitting crotch curve. It says to call Vogue's Customer Service 800 number and ask for Meg, but good luck getting through. I was able to leave a voice mail message. A fellow SB fan, another Peggy, already called earlier today and found out you need to return the pattern/s to Vogue - The McCall Pattern Company, 11 Penn Plaza, New York, NY 10001. (I indicated on the envelope's left side corner "Sandra Betzina Vogue Pattern Recall," to make it easier to expedite my replacement copies.) Vogue will replace the pattern/s with the new version and send you a coupon for a free McCalls Stitch and Save or Butterick Sew Easy pattern to cover your postage costs. Be sure to include a note with your address and specify a McCall's or Butterick coupon.
Interesting to note, Sandra must have some clout with Vogue! They've screwed up other patterns before, but I don't recall any of them being recalled.
Update April 2 -- I do give Vogue credit, Meg did call me this afternoon, confirming this same information.

Brad Pitt on Dallas!

If you ever catch the reruns of "Dallas" on Soapnet, Brad Pitt had a recurring guest star roll as "Randy," Charlie's boyfriend in the 1988 season. In fact, he was on again today, the episode called "Farlow's Follies," in case you have the series on DVD. Check out that 80's hair!

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Song

Kim Wilde, "You Keep Me Hangin' On" 4:14
The Best of Blue Eyed Soul

U2 & B.B. King, "When Love Comes to Town" 4:14
iTunes, U2, Rattle and Hum
Good towards the end song

Today's stats (powered by Allegra!): 46 minutes, 2.81 miles, 324 calories

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Cool Ties

Our ASG Neighborhood Group made 55 "Cool Ties" last night in about an hour and half! 56, if you count the one we wet for demonstration purposes. I brought home the rest in various stages of completion to finish, since I forgot my camera and I wanted to increase our total! Since I'm confined to the great indoors during the high pollen counts, I might as well make myself useful. As I sew each one, I say a little prayer of protection for the wearer to be. They really are easy to make. It's fun sewing which doesn't require alterations or wondering if it will fit.

Poor "Putt-Putt" Part 2

For those of you playing along with the home game version, if you guessed FUEL PUMP, you win! I lose - about $710.55 Wah! But on the gratitude side, instead of giving up and giving it back with the possibility still out there it would happen again, they were persistent and got the Putt to throw the computer code again. For those who know something about Ford Escort fuel pumps (and props to you if you do!), the pressure is supposed to be 35 something, and it dropped below 31 something. We were very lucky - a fuel pump which suddenly stops working is not a problem you want to have.

Yesterday's Favorite iPod Workout Songs

Allergies way too bad today, almost making breathing optional. Sneezing and wheezing on the treadmill, no way. So here's yesterday tunes --
Howard Jones, "Life in One Day" 3:39
iTunes, Howard Jones: Best Of
Poison, "Talk Dirty To Me" 3:44
iTunes, The Best of Poison
Good beat and funny lyrics, really!
Stats: 46 minutes, 2.78 miles, 290 calories

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Can't put it down!

Here's a fun escape book, I started it this afternoon at the doctor's office and have been sneaking pages ever since I got home -- "The Devil in the Junior League" by Linda Francis Lee. A native Texan, she actually was a Junior League member in real life. Snarky!

Closing Hancocks and ASG discount

Your mileage may vary, but depending upon who is ringing at the registers, you may or may not get your 10% ASG discount. Even though last week I was able to flash the card, yesterday a clerk said they are no longer Hancock's but a liquidation store and they don't have to follow Hancock's policies for discounts. When she asked the other clerks nearby, they didn't know anything about that. Grudgingly she gave it to me, as if she was doing me a wonderful favor. Sorry but, your pre-closing fabric sale prices were better than the 20% off what I bought. That extra 10% at least put it in the same ballpark.

At least give it a try!

More fabric added to the stats?

Yes, this afternoon I bought 4 yards, 20 inches (gotta love Jo-Ann's preciseness to the inch -I took what was left on the bolt, couldn't they just have said 4 1/2 yards? Jeez!) of 100% cotton muslin. Tomorrow night our Neighborhood Group is having a sew-in making "Cool Ties" for our soldiers overseas. I'll post the directions by the week's end.

Poor "Putt-Putt"

"Putt-Putt," our 1999 Ford Escort (giggle if you must, it gets 30+ mpg!), stalled yesterday without warning, and after 5 minutes, was able to restart and drive home without incident. That little voice in my head said, uh-uh, take it in to get it checked. We turned it over to our mechanic today and learned the computer had two error codes - one for the electrical circuit, the other for the fuel circuit. Cross your fingers it was something minor that made it throw the codes, and not a $$$ repair. I'll take cheap offers of the battery, a fuse, etc. Though in an attempt to make us feel better (?!), Jeff said better to fix something now than face an even major-er future failure. Sigh. . .

Sunday, March 25, 2007

New Vintage Vogues

Another $3.99 Vogue Pattern sale at Jo-Ann's last week --

1944's 2858 (left)

1948's 2787 (right)

From the big pattern purge earlier this year, I think I'm now at the break-even point for regifted patterns and new purchases. My pattern stash is a static stash...

Netflix Stars - The Holiday

The Holiday 5 stars! Jude Law! Ever so appealing even in dorky glasses will still make your heart skip a beat or several. It was one of those movies you wish could go on, but it seemed the writers may have thought the same, too. Great story lines, but the ending seemed like - whoops, slam on the brakes, we missed our turn. Other than that, very entertaining and a great chick flick!

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Songs

Are You Jimmy Ray? 3:23
iTunes, Jimmy Ray

It's in the Way That You Use It 4:10
iTunes, The Best of Eric Clapton
No stats, I had to switch treadmills about halfway through!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Happy Birthday, March 22!

Birthday horoscope: Learn to walk way from problems and sometimes spoil yourself in order to recharge your batteries. Remember you are a good cause and an excellent investment. Do for yourself more often.

Is this not a sewer's perfect horoscope?!

OK! And done!

Look what arrived in the mail today, kismet! From Nancy Erickson and the March/April Fashion Sewing Group Newsletter fabric selections --Black and white wicker weave..."London Plaid" in blue...and a slice of the blue faux leather.

I got the black and white wicker weave to make the Sandra Betzina Vogue skirt (8204), View D, the green skirt. Both sides are really neat and I'll use one side for the hem ruching. I thought it would be a cool skirt for summer. Let's face it, these birthday legs are better covered above the knee now!

Then the Burberry, ahem "London Plaid," in blue reversible to black with a 1/4 yard of the blue faux leather. I was thinking about making a small purse/tote, maybe even the Sandra Betzina shoulder bag (7862) and then using the "leather" as trim or to make a flower accent. There were also some cute bags in the book I bought yesterday. But I also bought enough of the plaid to change my mind. And for sure I'll use every inch of it somehow, someway!

Coinky-Dink - Part 2

Look what arrived yesterday! February finally!
I called GLP this morning to let them know...

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Considerable Restraint!

Some of our local Hancock's are closing -- I don't know why; there were always cars and shoppers there. Others are staying open, so I'll be able to get my Kwik Sew fixes prn. To be honest, lately I've only been shopping there for patterns and notions. I haven't found any fashion fabric I liked for a couple of years. Sad!

This is the first week of the inventory liquidation, so the selection is good, and the discounts OK...20%-30% off. But add in the ASG 10% discount, which they are still accepting, you can get some pretty good deals.

These three Kwik Sews came home with me. One of our ASG'rs made a pair of the slippers (3323) and they turned out really cute. And you never know when you may need a pattern for a tie (3183) or gloves (3397)!

This book had some really cute and creative ideas, 24 in fact! "Stitch & Sizzle Accessories"

I liked the amulet purse made out of a tie and the butterfly eyeglass case is perfect to make for Mother's Day. Check their website - ISBN is 1-58923-207-0

Bead and embellishment goodies. I can't explain the adhesive iron-on green"2" other than it must have been stuck to the underside of one of the packages and I wasn't paying attention during checkout when it rang up. (No returns/no refunds). And the scatological humor afterwards.

A closeup of the Blue Moon charms - the top is a heart with a keyhole (key to my heart?) saying "made with love" and the ones below are embossed with "love"

50 cent bargains! The red/gold and black/gold wooly nylon was originally $6.29!

Nice saying

Realistic and sewing-ish! Click to read.

The Pink Star Jasmine - Gorgeous!

And finally at its peak, two days later -- March 23 --
(Wouldn't this make an awesome bridal bouquet?!)

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Songs

No go for yoga today -- forward bends + sinus pressure from pine and oak pollen = nope
I did manage to get the feet to the treadmill, albeit a shorter go.

Elton John, "I'm Still Standing" 3:04
iTunes, Elton John: The Greatest Hits

J. Geils Band, "Must Have Got Lost" 2:58
iTunes, Best of the J. Geils Band

Cool down song: Alabama, "The Closer You Get" 3:36
Classic Country: The 80's

Today's stats: 38 minutes, 2.26 miles, 230 calories

Monday, March 19, 2007

Recipe to change a bathrobe into a raincoat

(at least for costume purposes!)

One shawl-collared Gilligan & O'Malley purple cotton waffle robe from Target - $19.99 With pins to mark and make notches.


Four brave cuts with scissors and a spool of brown thread to topstitch collar, cuffs, belt and pockets.
Add ten brown buttons to create illusion of double-breasted front, and to pockets and cuffs...

Voila! Virtually indistinguisable from real raincoats during performance! And it's actually cute enough to wear in public as a lightweight coat. Did you see the spring coat montage in yesterday's New York Times' Sunday Styles Section - Pulse by Ellen Tien - "Apply a Light Coating" on page 3?

Stolen Quilts

As soon as I get a link with photos of the missing quilts, I'll add them.

Published March 17, 2007 from Galveston Daily News
GALVESTON — When thieves took two suitcases from Robyn Pandolph’s car earlier this week, they probably were not hoping to find what lay inside."I’m sure when they opened those suitcases and found my quilts, they were disappointed," Pandolph said.While the hand-sewn quilts have little resale value, they represented years of Pandolph’s life."They’re priceless to me, but they wouldn’t be of value to anyone else," Pandolph said.Pandolph’s car was one of three broken into sometime after 10 p.m. Tuesday but before 8 a.m. Wednesday, in the area of 23rd and Postoffice streets. A neighbor found the damage when leaving for work."Someone had picked up a piece of broken curb and just thrown it through the window," she said. Inside her trunk were two suitcases containing the quilts she had made. Pandolph travels the world, giving lessons on quilt patterns and fabric-stitching techniques. She uses her quilts as illustrations of those techniques.Police detective Jason Chide said pawnshops did not deal in quilts, while people at area antique shops told him they would not buy if the stolen quilts came to them."Whoever took them, I don’t know what they’d do with them," Chide said.Pandolph described both of the suitcases as large, with wheels. The slightly larger one was brown, while the other was Navy blue.Chide said a cash reward was available for the quilts’ safe return. He asked that anyone with information on their whereabouts or on the people who stole them call him at 409-765-3773.


What was in the mail this afternoon?!?! Yay! Now if only the February issue would find its way home to me, too. . .


Finally we are taking the plunge away from "eggshell white" walls into color. The walls in the living room, dining room and hallway will be Suffolk Tan, which looks a little greenish - the top color on the lower right strip. A friend suggested doing one wall of the dining room in red as an accent and we are trying to decide which one. I don't want to go too pinky nor too wine lipstick red. Looking right now from the couch and afternoon sunlight, I'm leaning towards the bottom 2 middle strip colors - and the bottom 2 colors of the strip next to it on the left. They look just about the same! Or the big square swatch.

Burda Still MIA

Still no February and March issues of Burda World of Fashion! I called the Post Office 800# today and they were very nice. The Postmaster will put a periodical alert for the carrier and check around the PO. The problem is, our particular route is a training route and we get lots of misdirected mail. Unfortunately, if it was put in someone else's box, Burda's a big bubba and it won't fit into the return mail slot in the CBU. That means taking time to either bring it by our house or to the PO. . .

Onion-Smothered Pork Tenderloin Recipe

This yummy recipe is from the Complete Cooking Light Cookbook, published in 2000 (ISBN 0-8487-1945-X), on page 334. I've seen it resurface at Costco several times. Next time you see it, grab it along with a package of pork tenderloins and a bag of onions for dinner that night! It's become a family favorite with a few changes...

1 package pork tenderloins
2 teaspoons butter or margarine
1 large onion, sliced into rings
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 to 1 teaspoon Penzeys Bavarian Seasoning

Preheat oven to 400F. Trim fat from pork, cut a lengthwise slit down the center of each tenderloin, about 2/3 way through. Place in shallow rectangle baking dish.

Melt butter or margarine in large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add onion and saute 5-6 minutes or until tender. Add thyme, salt and pepper. Sprinkle Bavarian Seasoning on tenderloins and then add/spread onions into the cut and on top.

Bake at 400 until meat thermometer reads 160. Cooking Light says it would take 45 minutes, but in my Chantal baking dish, it cooked a little faster and hit 160 in 30 minutes. So start checking around 20-25 minutes to see how fast your oven is.

Serves 6

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Netflix Stars - The Girl with a Pearl Earring

Finally! L and I watched "The Girl with a Pearl Earring"! Worth the wait (we had this at home since February 15 and kept watching other DVDs instead), it was a very entertaining 3.75 stars; albeit sometimes slow paced, it still held our attention. The famous Colin Firth stare-down (sigh) was well utilized here. The colorization and cinematography were spot-on with the differences so noted between actors and scenarios. You felt as if you were watching a Vermeer painting brought to life. Be sure to check out the special features/Sundance Film about the creation of the table scene.

Netflix Stars - A Good Year

We watched "A Good Year" last night and gave it 5 stars! Netflix recommended it with a shooting star icon because we liked the following movies: Under the Tuscan Sun...Elizabethtown...The Wedding Date...Pride and Prejudice...Stick It...The Lake House...You've Got Mail

If you did, too, then you'll probably enjoy renting this. Directed by Ridley Scott (!), you've got Russell Crowe, Albert Finney and several promising actor unknowns. Oh, one of the supporting parts is played well by the older sister from "Bend it Like Beckham." The scenery is gorgeous. The pool scene-hysterical! Under special features, be sure to check out the fun promo interview with Russell and Ridley. They riff together pretty well. On the other hand, skip the Music Videos section. Russell, stick with your acting career and leave the singing alone. Seriously, everyone yelled, "Stop it!" as I fast-forwarded to 2 of the 3 songs and left the third unplayed. . .

Weekend Garden Update

Latest acquisition -- "Butterfly Blue" Scabiosa columbaria - ugly name for such a pretty flower! Lavender blue flowers above lacy dark green foliage attracts butterflies and makes a good cut flower. Was the 2000 Perennial Plant of the Year!

And look who made a comeback --


Our 20-year old Indian Hawthorne. This is a glamour shot, it really looks a little pathetic. We keep nursing it along, It gets easily over-shadowed by the other larger plants. Maybe this will be its summer to get some growth on!
Pink Star Jasmine, side view --

Transplanted from a larger backyard bush cutting two years ago, this dewberry is taking off this year. Hubby still dreams of dewberry pie. We are lucky to get 1 or 2 berries; just before perfect ripeness, the birdies swoop and pluck...

Club Fig still leafing out. It was a gorgeous day yesterday, look at the sky!

This rose bush blooms continuously. We bought it outside of Austin.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Today's Costco Finds

I went back to get the white version of the hibiscus and there were still some left. A sign! Will plant all six this weekend, they are about to bust out of their containers!
And while this printaholic resisted the temptation to buy the latest issues of Yoga Journal, Rachael Ray's Everyday Food, and Martha Stewart Living, even at 30% off...I did succumb to this --

I love the little bitty issues of Martha Stewart's Everyday Food, but they get easily misplaced and tossed around here. I'm sure these are reprints, but they are organized by season, along with bonus recipes including one for foolproof chocolate sauce. Sold! The list price is $24.95; Costco's price - $11.99 It hopped right into my cart. (If you are looking for it elsewhere, the ISBN is 978-0-307-35416-7)

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Songs

Sarah McLachlan, "World On Fire" 4:22
Good early lap song

Eddy Grant, "Electric Avenue" 3:51
America's Top Ten Hits - The 80's
Cool down: Backstreet Boys, "Incomplete" 3:55
Now 19
Today's stats: 51 minutes, 3.01 miles, 316 calories

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Celebrate 100 years of Hershey Kisses with the USPS!

Wouldn't this be great for weddings? And love letters?

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Songs

The Foundations, "Baby Now That I've Found You" 2:37
iTunes, The Very Best of the Foundations

Randy Meisner, "Hearts on Fire" 2:46
Greatest Hits of the 80's Vol 2

Cool Down: Heart, "These Dreams" 4:14
iTunes, Heart: Greatest Hits

Today's stats: 48 minutes, 2.83 miles, 291 calories

Where do I get my flowery and spicy life?

When I hitch up the horses and make the trek into Houston, this is my favorite place -- Another Place in Time on the corner of W. 11th and Tulane Streets, in the Houston Heights area.

(Note: Afterwards, you should check out the Houston location of Penzey's Spices - just spitting distance away/a few streets over on W. 19th. After you leave Another Place, turn right on W 11th, head back to N. Shepherd and turn right/North until you see W. 19th. And then turn right and go a few blocks, it will be on your right.)

It's an independent nursery/store, so the plants and flowers are selected for success in the Gulf Coast area. I love to read the hand-written descriptions for each one. Makes me want to buy them all -- Good thing the prices are very reasonable. Owner Mike Lowery constantly gets new items, so each trip I bring home something different. Inside the house part you'll find cool gifts, garden decorations and these great square candles for $3.50 or 3/$10. You will find it very hard to go home with just one. And they are made in Texas, of course!

The new "Tahitian Vanilla" candle is actually quite pleasant and doesn't make me feel like I have to hurl. Seriously. Most vanillas are gaggy. This one isn't.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Peanut Butter Cup Pie

1 package (8 ounces) Neufachel cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup creamy Costco Kirkland Organic peanut butter
1/3 cup fat free whipped topping
6-8 mini Reeses Peanut Butter Cups, save a few bits to sprinkle on top of pie
1 chocolate crumb crust (separate Hershey's recipe)

In small mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and peanut butter until smooth and light. Fold in the whipped topping. Coarsely chop the peanut butter cups, save some pieces to put on top, stir the rest into cream cheese mixture and spoon into crust. Refrigerate at least 4 hours before cutting. Tastes even better the next day or overnight, if you can control yourself! Yield 6-8 servings.

Modified from Taste of Home Cooking School, Classic Cooking - Spring 2007, page 71 "Creamy Peanut Butter Pie"
I like the Costco Kirkland Organic peanut butter, it only has 3 ingredients-organic peanuts, organic palm oil and salt. No sugars or chemicals!

Hurricane Pantry

Hurricane season will be here soon enough and it is always wise to restock and replenish the pantry. Particularly checking the status of the Reeses Peanut Butter Cups stash. What is more deserving of going out and buying a fresh new bag than using what you already have? How about yesterday's test recipe making of Taste of Home's Classic Cooking Spring 2007 "Creamy Peanut Butter Pie," which I thought sounded gross so I renamed it Peanut Butter Cup Pie! Recipe to be posted...

Hershey's Chocolate Crumb Crust recipe

This is on page 32 of the Hershey's Homemade cookbook. It is part of the Chocolate Marble Cheesepie dessert. But so versatile and yummy to use elsewhere for other goodies!

Not only will you save $$ by not buying the premade ones, but with only 4 ingredients you can pronounce and spell, it's definitely healthier and so much better tasting!

In medium bowl, stir together 1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs, 1/4 cup Hershey's Cocoa and 1/4 cup sugar. Blend 6 tablespoons melted butter or margarine. Press mixture firmly on bottom and up sides of a 9" pie plate. Refrigerate about 2 hours before filling.

My version -- If you use store brand graham cracker crumbs (ahem, Kroger!) you may want to check for the slightly larger pieces that didn't get crumbly all the way. I discovered this a little too late, but still tasty! And it's going to be covered by the filling anyways. Keep the 1/4 cup cocoa, but you can get by with a little less sugar - don't fill the 1/4 cup all the way. Also, you can easily knock off at least 1 tablespoon of the butter or margarine, whichever is currently less bad for you. I went ahead and melted the 6 T of butter, but just add enough to moisten and let the crumbs hold their shape.

A Girl's Best Friend --- in the kitchen!

Love, love, LOVE this book! I got it for sending in 2 Proofs of Purchase and $3.95 several years ago. It's dated 1991, second printing. I bet if you called Hershey's toll free number (as published in the book) 1-800-468-1714 or Google; they could help you or let you know about a more recent book. Certainly they reprint/republish their winning recipes -- flip through and see if you can find the"Chocolate Marble Cheesepie" (with the versatile Chocolate Crumb Crust recipe) and "Oatmeal Brownie Drops"-another family fave and a tasty way to eat your oatmeal. And "Hershey's Premium Doubly Chocolate Brownies"..."Hershey's Best Brownies"..."Almond Chocolate Cookie Bars"... "Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting"...

Garden news

The Yellow Fire Bidens bloomed! I would agree with the tag description that it is indeed a "small, but largely cheerful" flower!
And the pink star jasmine on the right started opening, too, despite a good knocking about from the rain last night (you can still see the raindrops)

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Songs

Bryan Adams, "Can't Stop This Thing We Started" 4:29
iTunes, Waking Up The Neighbors

Steely Dan, "My Old School" 5:48
A Decade of Steely Dan

Cool down song: Fleetwood Mac, "The Chain" 4:28
The Very Best of Fleetwood Mac

Today's stats: 3.11 miles, 53 minutes, 360 calories. Serious penance for Peanut Butter Cup Pie (recipe to be posted)...but oh so worth the sin!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Burda WOF - WTHRU?

Missing -- Burda WOF (World of Fashion) February and March!

I called GLP this morning just to make sure my subscription hadn't expired (it hadn't) because I had not received the February or March issues. She said March was mailed March 1, and it can take up to three weeks. February very well could show up today (it didn't), but since they didn't have any left, they would credit me an issue. I told her when/if it did, I would let her know and to remove the credit. Don't want bad sewing karma! Of course, the February issue is probably the Best One Ever! Admit it, (I will) some issues are better than others.
She said for some reason, deliveries to Texas are problematic. . .

Monday, March 12, 2007

Fat Trans-fer

While I can applaud the efforts of the Girl Scout cookie bakers to
remove the trans fats from the cookies, they seemed to have upped the total and saturated fat numbers as a result!

Thin Mints -- Serving size 4 cookies (right, who hasn't stuck/stored these in the freezer and then ate the whole sleeve?!), calories 160, carbs 22g, total fat 8g, saturated fat 6g. But hey, 6% of your iron requirement!

Peanut Butter Patties (also known as Tag-a-longs) -- Serving size 2 (extreme willpower needed!), calories 160, carbs 17g, total fat 9g, saturated fat 5g. Its redeeming quality - 1g of fiber!

Good thing Girl Scout Cookie Time is only once a year! Be kind to...and do good works with... your heart instead and donate the money directly to the Girl Scouts, or purchase the boxes to go to our soliders overseas or to local women's and other shelters. Contact your local Girl Scout Council for more information about these programs.

Today's Costco Find

Today's Costco bargain is a two pack of Hibiscus for $10.99! One is a double pink, the other single purple. I couldn't decide which one, so I bought both! I plan to put them along the side fence. If they get marked down further, I may go back and get the white ones. That would look really pretty!

Today's Favorite iPod Workout Songs

Mason Williams, "Classical Gas" 2:36
iTunes, Music 1968-1971
Who doesn't want to learn to play this on the guitar?

Boston, "Can'tcha Say (You believe in me)(Still in Love)" 5:12
iTunes, Third Stage
Yesterday on XM, Channel 8 (80's), they were doing a repeat broadcast of Casey Kasem's American Top 40 for March 28, 1987. This was at the beginning of the show, so it could have been the chart debut.

Cool down: Rod Stewart, "You're In My Heart" 4:30
iTunes, The Story So Far: The Very Best of Rod Stewart

Today's stats: 50 minutes, 2.87 miles, 302 calories
(The Daylight Savings Time switch really kicked my butt)

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Front Early Spring Garden Tour

Upgrade for the front garden. But first we pause for a good soaking -- for both the dirt and the Texas Mockingbird! We haven't had rain for several days and there was literally a flight pattern of birds (Cardinals, sparrows, too) lined up to take a shower!

Above right - These are Indian Paintbrushes (Castilleja). A first this year. I was too late for the bluebonnets and these actually have a better chance of naturalizing and returning next year.

This is probably the most unusual plant I've brought home so far - Tangerine Bulbine (Bulbine Flavescens 'Tangerine') It comes in yellow and tangerine. The tangerine version is supposed to be able to take the summer heat and the yellow prefers the spring.

Daisies! (Lencanthemum) The "Darling Daisy" tm brand How could I refuse and with a name like that!

Another new find for this year -- "Superbells Peach" Petunia (Calibrachoa hybrid). Supposedly the smaller the blooms, the more likely to be able to take the heat. It was next to the VIP Petunia and I had good luck with them before. I thought this coloration was beautiful.

A new Salvia (Microphylla) called "Hot Lips" (right) According to the plastic stake, it is pink, edged with red! I've had good luck with salvias before - "Cherry Blossom" has reseeded and naturalized from a purchase about 7 years ago. What a trooper! And it just started blooming again...

Here's another give it-a-chance -- Bidens Yellow Fire (Bidens Ferulifolia) The description said, "Small, but largely cheerful deep yellow flowers"

Also planted some repeat winners -- "Hawaii Blue" Ageratum (they usually stick around until June) and more Dianthus-"Diamond Coral" and "Dynasty Mix".