Saturday, August 18, 2018

Weekend Awesomenesss!!! v.19

Welcome to this edition of Weekend Awesomenesss!!!
I saved sooooo many good ones to share but one day I turned on my computer and SHAZAM...just like that, they disappeared, sigh...but that just made me create an even better edition for you!  So let's get down to business shall we!

Raise your wine glass for great salads!

Congratulations to Marine Corps Col. Lorna Mahlock!!!

First ever, eviction data base, looks like what "we the people" have been saying for a long time now is really true, well duh, not enough affordable housing!

It's because of city officials are 'persuaded' by developers like this in Deerfield Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, West Palm etc!
Most of these places remain empty but the city and county keeps letting them build! wtf?!?  This will be a post for another time.  Ya'll need to be woke to this!

Uhm, YUM! Uni butter on toast!

Here's what Lauderdale-by-the-Sea beach looks like right now!

My new food muse!

Some of the best signs...go kids of the future go!

Kids are hilarious, especially 9 yr olds!

A true super Momma!

This would be an awesome place to visit!

This week's Twisted Sifter Shirk's a good one!

How do you view luck...lucky or unlucky!?!

Hey humans change your habits and lifestyles now...this is our only home...well just so you know, the earth is becoming so hot it might not be inhabitable soon!!!

You go girl! The world needs more of this!

I totally don't get the whole Burning Man thing but I'm impressed that they leave no trace when the festival is over!

And we will end this week's edition with a remembrance of the amazing and talented Aretha Franklin!!!

There is only one Aretha Franklin!!!

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend, be nice to each other, our animals and our planet please, it's the only one we have!

Happy Gardening and Best Wishes,
Sheri B.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

What's Growing Lately South Florida Style

Hey ya'll so glad you could make it....just love having you stop by!
How's everything with you?  I hope life is treating you nicely and the rough spots are easily smoothed over with time.  Truth be told I've had a hard time getting back into the swing of things since my Dad passed away in January of this year.   Cleaning out his house is surprisingly overwhelming and seems like I get no where....the man had soooooooo much stuff! Three amoires, two china cabinets, twenty table/floor lamps, clothes galore, loads of knick-knacks and so much more, oyi!  When I'm there it is hard to fathom the reality of the task...I find myself saying things like "Dad loves that shirt" or "he will be so happy to see the garage organized" or I find myself not sitting in his chair because I'm expecting him to walk in the room and sit down.  But above all of those inner talkings there is always one singular moment that pulls on my heart...EVERYTIME and I mean everytime we would walk in the door, he would say "helloooooo?"  Because he was usually in another room but could hear the door chime.  Eventhough he knew who was walking in the door..."hellloooo".  Now when I walk in the house I still say "hellooooo" but then tear up because the silence answers back instead.

Give me a sec, let me just wipe my eyes cause I'm getting all foggy over here and can't see if I have any typos.

Ok move on to happier things to talk about, am I right!?!  So here's whats been going in the garden and around town.  First let me tell you the most exciting of all news!!!  My friend and I were hanging out at our house, cooking, chatting, sipping cocktails, etc.  She hadn't been here in a while so I was showing her some of the new additions in the garden.  And there on my cotton candy berry tree (muntingia calabura), beaming bright neon iridescent blue in the sunlight was this little black blue and tomato red butterfly.  It looked like someone electrified it due to it's brilliant color blue.  As we were admiring this lil' beauty, we start seeing them all over the tree.  Well wouldn't you's the elusive and somewhat rare atala butterfly!  I know right!?!  Incredible!!!  I literally almost lost my mind...psst a little secret...I feel so that bad?  I mean to see one is pretty cool but to have about 10 of them hanging out in your garden...wellll jah it's pretty freaking amazing!  Here's some pics.
This atala butterfly I found at my friend Ms. Joyce's house a few months ago,
look how brilliant that blue is!
The atala's will hang out on the leaves in the shade of the cotton candy berry tree for hours.  It's wild, I've never seen butterflies sit still for that long.
Some of you may or may not know the history of this little butterfly.  Atala (eumaeus atala) is pronounced 'ah-tail-uh' and is the largest in its family of the hairstreaks.  Its wing span is about 1 1/2 inches long.  Back in the early days of Florida, circa late 1800's-early 1900's, these butterflies were so numerous they were considered pests.  Around the mid 1900's (mid 1930's- early 1960's) they were thought to be extinct since no one had seen one.  The atala's decline was thought to be because of two major events happening at the same time in the early 1900's.  The building boom of Florida and the Native American's relying on coonties as part of their diet.  I honestly believe the former being the majority of the reason.  The removal of the native scrub land habitat where it lived was eradicated for housing and retail development on such a scale that was unprecedented in Florida at that time.  Sadly it still continues to this day.  The atala needs the coontie cycad (zamia integrifolia) to lay it's eggs on and nourish the baby caterpillar's with the leaves as their food.  With that gone so was the atala.....until one day in 1979 someone found a small colony existing on Key Biscayne.  Since then the push for their survival has been very successful.  Now the atala butterflies live from the Florida Keys all the way up to Indian River County.  All of these butterfly colonies are thought to be from the original lone colony on the Key.  They also live in the Caribbean islands of Cuba and Bahamas where apparently their numbers were never in any threat.  Though there are certain colonies in the west coast of Florida that are ephemeral, meaning they come and go.  It's scary how fast the west coast of Florida is developing and eradicating the native habitat so we may see another decline of species real soon unless we stop this madness.  Miam-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties seem to have the most permanent colonies.  Hopefully our new colony will be too!

But wait it gets better, I thought maybe our nextdoor neighbor would have some too because they have some really large coonties in their front yard.  Uhmmm, it blew my mind how many there were at their house!  The ones at our house must have originated from their house.  Here's some pic's from their yard of the atala butterflies and the caterpillar's on the coontie.
These are the atala's eggs on the coontie plant.
A bunch of atala chrysalis on the coonties. 
The atala butterfly on a tall flowering plant my neighbor has growing.
Believe it or not I have no idea what this flowering plant is that my
neighbor has growing in their yard.  It's not an annual but grows all
year round and has been there for at least four years.  But the atala's love it.

If you want to take a last-of-the-summer road trip or live near by Fort Pierce, their state park has an atala colony that is quite prominent this time of year.  It's the Fort Pierce Inlet State Park  at 905 Shorewinds Drive.  Check it out though remember, all species of plants and animals are federally protected in state parks.  So look but no touching or foraging please.
Take a picture, it'll last longer...hee hee.

Really not much has been happening this summer, the vegetable garden has struggled due to my neglect and the heat, I'm finally getting back to getting our ignored landscape under control (gosh it's embarrassing) and will be working in our veggie garden to get that ready for fall and winter's plantings.

Here are a few plants I acquired earlier this year:
mango 'coconut cream', pink guava, fig 'LSU purple', snowbank 'white' blackberry and baby slash pine trees from Walmart of all places.
This is my 'LSU purple' fig, it's absolutely by far
the most delicious fig I have eaten to date!  If you
find one in your travels I highly recommend
purchasing it, especially if you like figs!

These are my two snowbank 'white' blackberry plants. 
I was so nervous they would literally shrivel up to nothing in
our seriously hot and humid summer but I planted them in a
temporary spot next to my hose in part sun/part shade and so far so good.
They have super sharp thorns everywhere so I'm thrilled about that but
I'm very excited to see what they produce!
With the rains we have been getting just recently, our Jamaican capers are super happy with the hugest seed pods I seen so far, hanging all over them.  Some already popped open like the Pilsbury dough rolls and some are almost ready to burst their bright red sticky seeded insides out for the birds to eat.
Our Jamaican capers in bloom it drives the bees and butterflies crazy with excitement for the nectar the flowers provide.
See how full the Jamaican caper shrubs are?  They make great privacy hedges!

Aren't these just the coolest looking seed pods!?! 

What I have been working on though are my orchids...yes I'mmm baaaack with my orchid obsession.  I found an old school grower in Homestead who grows the old school phalaenopsis's with the huge floppy leafs and very long sprays of large flowers.  But he mainly grows cattleya orchids, you know the kind of classic cattleya's with huge flowers, ruffled edges and incredibly perfumey.  OMG so amazing! It's hard to find orchid growers still growing their own crosses of species.  Many of them order flasks of hybrids to grow and sell which isn't a bad thing but the art of orchid crossing I feel is not being passed down to a next generation.  It's really sad there are such small numbers of young ones getting involved to continue growing these amazing plants.  I'll be posting the pictures of some of these in my next post for you to see.  But in the meantime here's a couple to wet your appetite!
This phalaenopsis flowers started a deep dark purple/pink color and
the older it got the lighter the flowers became, changing color
over time. 
This is another one of the phalaenopsis's and these
flowers are on the same orchid!  How'bout dat!?!
Well folks, that's about all for now...I'll do much better in consistently posting from here on out. I promise.  Thank you for sticking around today and looking forward to seeing you again!  Stay hydrated and be good to each other and our planet, it's the only home we have.

Happy Gardening and Best Wishes,
Sheri B.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Weekend Awesomenesss!!! v.18

Happy Weekend Awesomenesss!!!

Hope your week went well and the weather hasn't caused too much trouble for you.  Cause here in zone 10b it's beautifully tropical but for most of our nation the weather is brutal.  Stay safe, snuggle with a hot cup of someting' and enjoy!

Wow talk about ingenious...and dedication in transforming an ordinary roll of tinfoil to this!

What an incredible life goal this young woman has!

Live eagle nest cam, what!?!

I'm so getting these daring books for my niece (and the dangerous boys books for my nephew)!

Scottish roll recipe shared from my friend Ms. Joyce!

DIY a beautiful paper flower garland!

Do you know how to bend properly? you do too!

Could putting treated sewage in FPL canals pollute Biscayne Bay?...Duh yes!

We need more of this kind of public/political art!

Do you know your butterflies?!

A great chicken udon recipe!

Barbadians are so cool!

Know the people and their families who we lost due to the madness happening in our nation, RIP amazing Draylen Mason!  May peace be with your family.

One of the best written articles I've read in a long time...I'm inspired, thank you Dianca London Potts!

So here I leave you until next time my friends!
Happy Gardening and Best Wishes,


Sunday, March 25, 2018

Weekend Awesomenesss!!! v.17

Welcome to this week's weekend awesomenesss!!!!

First let me say thank you all so much for your love, care and sympathies regarding my Dad passing away on his birthday this past January 28th, 2018.
It's been difficult getting back into social media but time to get back on the horse!  I love horses btw! 
Got some good stuff for this episode so lets get to it!

Lessons to help you emotionally heal!

And we wonder if we humans are truly smart or just creating our own demise!

I feel like a part of Chinese culture watching these!

Wishing you all a wonderful and love filled weekend!
And Happy Gardening!

Best wishes,
Sheri B.

Monday, February 12, 2018

Sadness South Florida Style

Hey Everyone, (said with a sigh and my head hanging low)...
I have some sad news to share with you, so sad that it has taken me a while to be able to have the energy to write it, so here goes.

Last weekend, (aka January 28th, yeah it took me awhile) I was planning a birthday party for my Dad.  He was turning 82 and I really wanted to do something fun and exciting for him.  Especially since he had been in a spiritual and emotional funk for a while.   Ever since my Mom died 10 years ago, aka the love of his life, we knew he was sad but started dating right away.   We didn't understand why he didn't take some time to grieve but eventually he met a wonderful lady who was widowed and they lived together until she passed away a year ago.  Then that's when his sadness for my Mom really became overwhelmingly apparent.  My sister and I believe he was truly depressed for a long time and didn't give himself a chance to grieve through it.   Whenever we would talk to him about it he just brushed it off like 'I'm not depressed'.   So fast forward to the beginning of my paragraph (cause you know I can get sidetracked) and I really wanted him to have fun for his birthday.  You don't turn 82 everyday ya'know!

I called my Dad's best friends, aka our 'second family' (which aren't related to us but they truly are my second Mom, Dad, sister and them so much!)  And as the sky gods may have it, everyones schedule was free and they could all attend and the weather was beautiful!  Whew, that is an accomplishment within itself.  So "Don's 82nd Tropical Extravaganza" was set in stone for Sunday January 28th on his actual birthday!   I had a surf and turf spread of all his favorites planned out...appetizers of smoked fish dip, brie and crackers, veggies, honey roasted cashews...then for the main event we were going to have grilled steak, king crab (and not krab with a k crab hee hee), roasted sweet & regular potatoes, grilled corn, salad, garlic bread....and for the finale homemade coconut cake, homemade guava cheesecake and fresh fruit.  My 'second sister' Linda was bringing salsa music so we could dance (he loved to dance and hadn't for a long time) and it was going to be epic!

Or so I thought, until I received a phone call from my Dad's neighbor Sunday morning. 
She said, "Hi honey, I'm so sorry to tell you this but your father has passed away."
The above space is my brain trying to process what she had just told me.  I said, "What????Wait what???Your kidding right?What???What????Seriously?Whaaaaatttt???"

And then the hysterical sobbing and body shaking happened.

It was a truly surreal experience made especially more so because I was at the Publix grocery store and had just walked away from the seafood department where I was beaming with pride and happiness talking to the young gentleman about the day's events and why I needed so much crab.  

I went back to the seafood department and sobbingly said "Excuse me but I have to give this back. I'm so sorry."  The young man looked at me like oh gosh what just happened to her.  I told him "they just called me and told me my Dad just died."  And without a second thought the young man dashed from around the counter and hugged me tight and said "I'm so sorry to hear this!  I'm so sorry."  

That meant the world to me...a huge thank you to you fine sir, thank you!

So it's been sad around here and even though I am super sad and feel lost sometimes, I know he died quickly, peacefully just how he always wanted to go.  And it makes me feel better knowing that he's not sad anymore.  He's with his beloved wife of 40 years.  He always said "you know, I would have loved to have been with your Mom for forever."  Now you are Dad, now you are.

We have literally thousands of pictures of our family but here are a few pictures I'd like to share with you of my Dad.  He loved experiencing what life offered, good and bad.  He loved his family and friends, meeting new people, road trips, boating, fishing, mowing his yard, swimming in the pool, family get togethers, holidays, our many pets, going to the beach, dancing, inventing new ideas, gardening and was an avid reader.   He never said anything mean about anyone and was so caring about people it was almost to a fault.  His enjoyment of life and selfless giving to others will always be remembered.  We will have his celebration of life service February 17th here in Lighthouse Point, FL.

This is my Dad went we went to the Keys not long after my Mom, his wife, passed away.
This is my Dad and Mom with my grandparents and my great grandparents.
This was the house warming party for when they bought their house in Miami.
My Mom and Dad at Parrot Jungle
My great-grand parents, my grand-parents and my parents
Me and my Dad...yes it used to get cold in Miami hee hee
My Dad and sister
My Dad and brother
My brother on my Dad and me on my grandfather, Pop Pop.
All of us at Matheson Hammock park
My Mom, Dad, me, my sister and brother at our neighborhood block party.
My Dad and I at YMCA camping trip
Canoeing at Johnathan Dickinson Park
My sister, brother, me, my dad and grand mother (his mother-in-law) on a family vacation in California
My Dad, sister, Mom, grandmother and brother
Our immediate family and 'second' family
My sister, Dad and me
See his face....that's his truly happy face!
Dad with grandson Alex
My Dad and grand daugther Maddie
Me and my Dad
My sister, brother-in-law, my niece & nephew and our 'second' family
Me and Dad
Me and Dad
Me, Dad and my sister.
My boyfriend, his family and Dad
My Dad's 
I love and miss my Dad so much!
Emotions ebb and flow, tears stream from my soul and sadness catches me off guard.  My Dad was one of my best friends and this time around it's going to be a long hard road ahead.  My brother passed away 14 yrs ago, my mom passed away 10 yrs ago, my last grandmother passed away 9 yrs ago, my fiancee passed away about 5 yrs ago and now my dad is gone.  So needless to say it's been rough around here.  When another family member dies, all those things you feel come bubbling back to the surface.   It's hard to swallow sometimes, the air feels a bit different, the body feels dehydrated and life spins a little weirder tilt at ya.  Though when I ground myself, I find that it reminds me to be grateful for all the amazing years I was able to have with them, memories are more precious than gold, er is it bitcoin now a days.  Anyhow he left us with so many stories to tell in order to keep their memories alive.  For which I now have to write down so I don't forget, lol.  When he left me voicemails he would  always say "And happy gardening to you my dear!"
And so with that I bid ya'll adieu and happy gardening to you while I go cry salty tears on my plants.  Just kidding they're falling on my desk. :)

Go give your family a huge hug and smother them with kisses!
Best wishes and many thanks,

Sheri B.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Weekend Awesomenesss!!! v.16

Welcome to this week's Weekend Awesomenesss!!!

A local story...way to go Boca Raton, stop the over development!!!

Booooo, bad Boca our parks land & stop developing...they are not just spots on a map they are where animals & plants live in a ever diminishing native the right thing!!!

Miami did the right to Walmart!!!

Learning how to let go and release expectations!

Some great ideas for goodie bags without candy for kids parties!

A place where you will never find some seriously icy waves!

Except if you're a cat then this cat gift is awesome!

Had more of my share of being here, unfortunately depression sucks!

Advertisement fails, who would of thought lol!

OH these were the days!

If only I could make home made sushi like this!

Who would think you can't grow vegetables in your front yard here!?!

Good people are just awesome....spread the goodness!!!

Thanks for coming and hope you enjoyed this week's weekend awesomenesss!!!  Looking forward to hanging with you next weekend!

Happy Gardening and Best Wishes,

Sheri B.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Look what butterfly I found South Florida style

Hey Ya'll, thanks for being here!  I know you're busy so here's a quick post for you.  Last week we were working at one of our client's homes, I was applying fertilizer to the sod and there I saw with my little eyes this atala butterfly, eumaeus atala!!!  Unfortunately it was dead by natural causes but is still in perfect shape.  So like any good insect collector would do, I brought it home with me to share with you.
Atala butterfly, eumaeus atala

Here's a little bit about the atala so you'll know why I was so excited.  I have been seeing them more and more each year which is great but to actually have one in hand is pretty dang cool!  Below is an excerpt from my butterfly book, the 
National Audubon Society, Field Guide to North American Butterflies.
"Once common in the subtropical wilds of southernmost Florida, this species was abundant in what is now downtown Miami.  Urbanization and probably hurricanes, fires and competition from another species for the host plant, all played a part in its decline.  The Floridian race was considered extinct until a few small colonies were found in the early 1960's.  Atala visits flowers of Spanish needles and scrub palmetto palms with a slow and lazy flight."

Their habitat ranges from brushy edges of wooded areas, to wild roadside brush with wild flowers and natural hammocks.  Luckily us South Floridians have done a great job with landscaping many of the atala's favorite plants.  Their host plants (which means the plant they lay their eggs on and eat) are cycads with an emphasis on the coontie.  They are found in the extreme southern areas of Florida as well as in the Caribbean island of the Bahamas, Cuba and a few other.  I have also seen them flying around Mounts Botanical Garden in West Palm Beach.  The atala butterfly has multi broods virtually year round.  They are a small butterfly, about 1 3/4 inches but bold in color.  You can't miss them with their beautiful deep black color, bright indigo blue, bright red and an iridescence to them that is indescribable.

There you go...a little tid bit on a butterfly truly native to only South Florida!

Thanks for hanging out & looking forward to seeing you again!

Happy Gardening and Best Wishes,
Sheri B.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Our work truck was stolen...

Ok Nancy Drew's and Hardy Boys out there, we really need your help!!!   Summer of last year our 1993 Chevy 1500 truck was stolen right out of our driveway on July 6th, 2017 at 1:44 am in Lighthouse Point. It just so happen to have all of our work tools and equipment in it, which we normally do not keep in the truck, so go figure, timing right!?! I am bringing it up now because since then, soooo many more have been taken from not only our area but other neighboring cities, like Deerfield Beach, Coral Springs and Pompano Beach. Just last night two Ford F350's were stolen a few blocks from us at the corner of NE 27th Ave and Ne 51st Street.

The thieves took about seven minutes to get in our truck and have it on the road. Incidentally the thieves pulled out right in front of a marked LHP police who was making the rounds on our street in the NE quadrant of Lighthouse Point. An unmarked BSO sheriff who was also on duty with the LHP officer was coming the opposite direction. Both police cars followed the thief in our stolen truck right out of the neighborhood. They didn't chase him, didn't turn their lights on and didn't try to pull them over. Once all three of them left the block, the accomplice who had been hiding in the Tahoe just drove off. You can see in the video that the thieves know where the cameras are and come into the neighborhood from the Deerfield streets where they have no cameras. But in reality, security cameras don't do diddly squat because LHP spent millions of tax payers dollars on them and to my knowledge not the cameras nor the police have caught a single car/truck thief.

Believe me I understand the county has a "no chase" policy, though might I interject here and let me not tell you how to do your job BUT why not have the marked police car back off. The thief will think you stopped at your imaginary city line you can't cross. Then have the unmarked Broward Sheriff's officer can follow the bee back to the hive.

When the police came back and knocked on our door at 1:57 am, the first thing he said was "have you heard or seen anyone around, there have been reports of break in's in the neighborhood."  One of the neighbors looked up "break ins" on their crime reports website and none had been reported in a 6 month time period for our area.

My husband said no we didn't hear or see anything and let them search around our property. I went out to let the officer know that no one lives at the house across the street so they need to check it out if someone is hiding there. As I'm standing there I realized our truck was stolen and then that's when the officer said "oh that was your truck that I saw tear out of your driveway" and it was then he told us what really happened. REALLY!?!? I told the police officer and the detective on multiple occasions that two more of our neighbors to the south of us have security cameras as well. They never asked our neighbors for a copy.
The front view of our stolen 1993 Chevy 1500 with wood interior and light grey leather seats.

Here's the back view of our stolen 1993 Chevy 1500 truck...she's a beauty and I want her back!

Here is the link to the video on our Facebook page.
It was too big of a video to load on this post.

So here is a chance for all of you to do a good deed since the LHP police really don't give a hoot.  In a nut shell here is what the security video shows.  The thieves drive south on to NE 29th Street, at some point they turn around and drive back the way they came to park across from our neighbors to the north of us.  The thieves park under a street light in front of their house, both guys get out and a some point the passenger walks down the street to our house.  He then walks back to their get-a-way suv, he opens the back barn door, gets tools then runs back to our house.  During the time the thief was breaking into our truck, you see lights show up in the top left frame of the video.  That is the unmarked BSO sheriff coming into view from the adjacent side street of NE 52 Court who then go across and pulls in a vacant houses' driveway facing south, where he sits idle there.  In about 7 minutes you see a lot happen all about the same time...the unmarked BSO pulls out of the driveway heading south on NE 29th Ave, as you see the thief driving north past the BSO at a high rate of speed in our truck followed by the marked LHP car, then the unmarked BSO makes a u-turn to follow the both of them.  Notice the tail lights are not working on our truck which is a moving violation.  All the while, the accomplice sat under the street light sweating it out until he drives away.  No one checked the suspicious suv sitting there.

Please, if you see our truck and/or the thieves anywhere please call your local sheriff immediately (not the LHP police) and/or us. 
Lighthouse Point Police case #170706005698 

We have had this truck in our family since we got her in 1993 and would love to have her back!  
Thank you everyone for reading this and helping out!
Best Wishes,
Sheri B.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Weekend Awesomenesss!!! v.15

Welcome to this weekend's awesomenesss!!!
So glad you're here so here we go!

How to get those plant beds ready for the frost free planting time with Steve Albert!

High Wire Distillery is helping a legendary heirloom corn, the Jimmy Red, that was almost extinct make a deliciously marvelous comeback....thank you High Wire!

A homesteading muse....Northwest Edible Life...Erica if full of inspiration!

Rebecca has created an amazing apothecary, King's Road Apothecary, full of wonderful small batch concoctions to nourish and sooth your soul and body that I love using.  Another muse of mine...rock on Rebecca!

Some interesting psychology experiments and the results!

Don't watch alot of tv but looking forward to this new show!

I love watching lightening but it scares the heck outta me, here's how you can watch it safely, lol!

A cactus Christmas tree, so ingenious!

Getting back to my baking roots with this!

Love good people, we make this world awesome!

WOW, space x rocket...or is it, lol!

Hope you enjoyed this week's weekend awesomenesss!!!

Happy Gardening and Best Wishes,
Sheri B.