Sunday, November 1, 2015

Life on the Other Side of Retirement

It's been months since I last posted, and I really don't know why.  I do notice that many of my blog-friends are similarly posting less often.  Some are more involved with growing children ... I don't have that excuse.  Some are involved in new relationships .... nope.  Can't use that reason either.  Life just seems to intervene.

Dahlias and  hydrangeas still going strong the first week of October.
Like so many retirees i have known, i just find that my time is even more filled than it was when i was working.  The difference is that now i'm doing what i want, and when i want to do it. 

I have been reading your posts - nearly every day - and commenting a lot, and what i have missed is the "companionship" of the blog world.  Talking with you all makes me feel connected to a group, just as i enjoy knowing what's going on with you.  Am not sure what I have to say these days, now that i no longer have the angst of getting ready to retire, but hope to find more to tell you about both the old and new things in my life.    

The early morning sun makes this the perfect place for breakfast - just enjoying the birds and flowers. 
You know that the garden goes on.  I worked a few hours nearly every day all summer and now into the fall.  You already saw me fill in the pond and make a new sitting area.  That's settled in now and i often carry my breakfast out there and spend a few minutes with the birds.

The heat and drought of August pretty much finished off the herbs, so I pulled them out early and moved the iris to this raised bed.

In early September i pulled out the herbs and moved all the iris to that spot.  It has full-day sun and excellent drainage, so should be a great place for the iris.  Don't really have any plans for the space vacated by the iris, but am sure that something will strike my fancy by spring. 

Now I have two projects.  The small one is half done already.  We moved a large frame that was designed to hold a swinging chair [chair long since dry-rotted!] to the end of the walk that leads to the rear of the property, ["the rear of the property" - sounds like we have acres, in stead of square feet!.  so pretentious.  sorry. ] and in the spring i will attempt to train clematis to climb it.  I plan to wrap it in mesh to provide support, and have already planted a clematis on each side.  [One is already proving tasty to the rabbits, so may have some problems there.]

The "old" veggie patch.  The new one will incorporate nearly off of this space.  More to come on this later. 
The big project is putting in a "formal" kitchen garden.  The above mentioned rabbits wreaked havoc on my veggies this summer, so i am taking decisive action and fencing in a large - by my standards - plot in the last remaining sunny and mostly flat spot in the yard.  It will give me about 20% more growing space for veggies and will provide a little bit of additional space for annual flowers. 

The dahlias have been pretty and plentiful - still blooming on November 1st.  The first frost will be soon and they will be gone.

I'll get the prep work done this fall and then plant new stuff in the spring.  This is a two-fer.  
Obviously, i'll end up with a new garden plot, but also... i am taking a couple of horticulture classes and can use this for a class assignment.  The need to finish "on time" will keep me focused.  I'll save telling you about "school" for another post.

The 'Strawberries and Cream' hydrangea is pretty, but it flops!
The product information did not include that!

So, i'm going to try to post weekly again and hope to hear from you.  Hope your summers went well, and the first half of your fall.


  1. Welcome back! I have been thinking about you but figured that retirement just changed your routine, and that you would rejoin us when you were ready. Wow, you have been busy and l so enjoy seeing the flowers on your blog!

    Gorgeous weather in the desert though nights are starting to be cool. All's well here, the 4th batch of houseguests is on its way.

    1. Your fall photos have been breath-taking!

  2. Welcome back!

    Funny, I was thinking the same thing and just happened to notice that you just posted. I too have been away from blogging more than I've been on. No reason in particular other than work which has taken up many hours this year.

    Sounds like you've had a very busy, but good, summer. It's nice to do what you want ,when you want. We too had problem with the rabbits eating the clematis by the shed. We'd nurture the stubs left behind only to have the rabbits come back and eat them again. I'm thinking about putting the sides of a milk jug around them next year to protect the new shoots.

    Looking forward to reading more about your retirement adventures.

    1. Excellent idea - the milk jugs. They have never bothered any clematis in the past - well, at least that i have noticed! - and only one of two this time. Wonder if Jackmanii tastes better than the rest? Now, i am battling a ground hog. Caught him twice yesterday clambering over the fence around my fall greens - no lettuce left.

  3. Hi Webb,
    Glad to see you posting again! I missed your cheery posts. We've had terrible rabbit "infestations" this year due to some McMansion construction nearby, driving the critters down from the adjacent Highline Canal Trail to our hillside town homes.
    Suddenly they don't seem so cute & cuddly anymore. Good luck with your new projects & glad to see you are truly enjoying your retirement!
    Diane in Denver

  4. I enjoyed your update. My husband will have completed his first year of retirement in November and I must say it hasn't been easy for me. My work has been crazy and his sister needed to be bought out of a partnership with us, so there isn't a retirement in my near future.

    Though I still yearn for breakfast and coffee outside watching the birds. My husband does this, but does a great job of not making me feel envious that I'm not with him.

    I'm glad you are enjoying your retirement - you deserve it.