Tuesday, October 23, 2012

How to Make Marigold Garlands

Richard and I got married on 10/11/12 at the Gandhi statue so I thought it would be fun to make a marigold garland to leave as a tribute on the Mahatma.

The garlands were super easy to make and Richard really rocks those flowers, doesn't he? Folks have been asking how to make them, so here goes.

All you need are marigolds, strong thread, and a large needle. I raided my friend Judy's garden because I didn't think of the idea in time to plant them in the spring. 

Cut the marigolds close to the bottom of the bloom (you don't want to leave too much stem but you also don't want them to fall apart). Measure how long you want your garland, keeping in mind that the flowers take up some of the length. Add 10" for tying (Richard's was about 50" of thread, Bandit's was 30" )

Then start stringing the marigolds. Put the needle right through the area under the petals where it's fairly thick and sturdy. Then push the flowers close together so they're nice and tight. If you alternate the direction of the stems as you put them on, you'll hardly see them.

You can randomly mix the different types of marigolds throughout the garland, as I did on Bandit's, or have a couple of accent spots like I did with the dark red and the large yellow ones on Richard's. 

I had a lot of flowers left over so I made a few small wristlets. They turned out really well, too!
Here's what the project looked like in-progress. Once made, I spritzed each garland with a little water, put it in its own plastic bag and stored it in the fridge until needed. They'll even stay fresh overnight if you want to make them ahead of time. The most important thing is not to stack them on top of each other because the weight of all those flowers will smoosh them down a bit.

A wristlet garland works great as a cake topper, too!

Hope you give garland making a try. Enjoy!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

What's in Your Backyard?

Part of the fun of being in a new environment is discovering cool places practically in your own backyard. This Buddhist Temple was a great find--thanks to my neighbor! We went out for an adventure and ended up here. Can't wait to go back for meditation--all are welcome at 6am or 7pm. Guess which one I'll be trying for.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

A Murmuration in Solivita

Could it be? A real murmuration in Solivita? Click here to watch and you be the judge.

The first I heard of a murmuration was a viral video last December. Remember the two girls in the canoe? No? It is truly amazing.

So imagine my surprise when Richard and I were out for a bike ride in February and we came across a similar phenomenon. Way cool. Now to be a true murmuration (I just love saying that word!) these have to be starlings and I'm not sure they are. Richard thinks they may be swallows but, as we don't have a definitive answer, I'm calling it a murmuration. Hope you enjoy it!

Sunday, January 29, 2012


From Picture of the Week 2012
We've been told numerous times that, "Where there's water in Florida, there are gators," and it certainly seems to be true. This guy here though is the biggest one we've seen yet--must be almost 10 feet long.

So imagine our surprise when the very next day we see he has a buddy the same size. Yikes! Nice to know they have each other but I'm sure glad they like to sun on the far side of the pond.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Turkey Trot

From Picture of the Week 2012
There are lots of wild turkeys in Solivita and it's always fun to see them out for a stroll. Snapped this photo from my bike while riding home from the pool. Apparently the male and female turkeys flock separately. These are the ladies--the males have a funny feather that hangs down that's called a beard--you can see it here and learn more about them. I'd been looking forward to seeing the mating rituals until I read that their gobbles can be heard up to a mile away. It may be a very loud spring.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

A Picture a Day

My friend MK has committed to drawing every day this year and posting a picture a week. I love this idea! Seems like a great way to help focus on each moment in each day--there's something to capture no matter where you are.

However, drawing is something my inner artist has yet to embrace. But I do take at least one photo or video almost every day so I'm committing to making it a daily thing and posting a photo or video of the week either here or on Facebook. It may be the best one or just the most interesting.

Here's the first. (Click on photo to see larger image.)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

A Christmas Card for You!

We put together a little video Christmas card for friends and family. Hope you enjoy it.

May all your holiday wishes come true!

PS Couldn't resist including one of my favorite Christmas photos--that's Kathy's baby, Matt, way back in 1999. And, Matt, you're still just as cute.