Monday, October 31, 2016

It's Halloween: Eat, Drink & Be Scary!


Halloween is here, the day to EAT, DRINK, &  BE SCARY! If you've been following my cyber venues over the past fifteen days, you undoubtedly have noticed that in addition to giving voice to the flora which grows in my urban garden, as well as the array of birds that visit it, I've been reporting on the antics of characters who've come to spend time with me for Halloween. Some of these guys and gals have been visiting me for a number of years, and their scenarios have been documented in entries here on Blogger as well as tumblr, and on hometalk, under the following titles: Boo! Halloween in Both my Urban Terrace & Indoor Gardens,  Halloween Decor Indoors (mostly)Group B Wins The Coin TossGroup A Wins The Second Coin TossGroup C  Wins 3rd Coin TossConclusion of Follow-Up Halloween Decor, Honoring National Pumpkin Day With a Contest in My Gardenand At Halloween and Always, Make New Friends, Keep the Old 

And this year, a few newcomers have graced my home with their presence. They include a fellow who insists he's no mummy's boy, a few witches (one named Ms. Grim one who wears a yellow cape, one who calls herself Queen of The Night, one who has bat wings, and one named Annie McFanny). Additionally some newcomers have come dressed as OZ characters, one wearing a Winged-Monkey costume, the others dressed up as Glinda and Dorothy. Moreover, this past Saturday, a character dressed as a black cat stopped by with information on this type of feline's plight on Halloween.

Other newcomers here who have yet to be featured in any of my cyber-venue postings are as follows: Mr. Pinstripes, a young girl in a pumpkin cape, and some one dressed as a prisoner.  






The latter of these individuals is usually here for Valentine's Day when he claims to be a Prisoner of Love.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

a recovering JACK-O-LANTERN does some BIRD WATCHING


In spite of his head injury, the Jack-O-Lantern in my urban garden (in NYC) is doing some bird watching. You may recall that a little over two weeks ago, this Jack sustained trauma to his head when he stayed in the sun too long!


However, he hasn't let his injury stop him from enjoying the array of fauna that visit my garden, including this pigeonPigeons are one of the bird varieties that Cam (the prolific cardinal who visited my rooftop garden) mentions in her book, "Words In Our Beak Volume One.” 


And in her book, Cam references a NYC bird rehab facility, as well as how I was able to participate in the rescue of a member of this bird type. Be that as it may, the recovery time for MY head injury is taking longer than the Jack's; but I am doing the best I can (under the circumstances) to help Cam in promoting, as well as selling her book.

Meanwhile, I'll take on the Jack's wisdom and keep my eye on the birdies!


National Candy Corn Day


As I mentioned in yesterday's post here on Blogger, today is National Candy Corn Day. The picture atop this entry shows two of my whimsical visitors (who are fraternal twins) dressed in Halloween costumes designed to look like candy corn. The image was taken a few years ago, and ever since that time, these kids have been regular visitors to my home both at Halloween and Thanksgiving, which are the two main holidays for one to enjoy candy corn.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Black Cats and Halloween



One of my Halloween visitors is getting an early start  on tomorrow's holiday, which is National Candy Corn Day, an event that is always celebrated on October 30th. I plan to post something about it at the time of the actual celebration, but this guy prefers to take his large piece of candy corn now. He does not like to go out on Halloween or Mischief Night (which coincides with National Candy Corn Day) and I understand his trepidation. 

Friday, October 28, 2016

Frankenstein Friday


It's the last Friday in October which means it's Frankenstein Friday! In honor of the occasion, I'm posting a picture (from bygone years) of one of the characters who visiting my succulent garden for Halloween because he's dressed as Frankenstein! This little guy is someone you might recognize because he's been coming to my home during the Halloween season for a number of years and he's been featured in a post on hometalk.

Moreover, I posted an image (which can be seen below) this past August 31st in honor of Mary Shelley's birthday. As you may know, Ms. Shelley created the character, Frankenstein in 1818 when she was twenty-one years old.




As for the creator of Frankenstein Friday, that honor belongs to Ron MacCloskey. 

Thursday, October 27, 2016

The Dendranthema Rubellum AKA Korean Mum IS the word....




The flowers seen in the pictures (taken in my urban garden) atop this blog entry are a type of mum known as Mum koreana Sheffield AKA Korean Mum, Dendranthema Rubellum.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

National Pumpkin Day 2016



Today, October the 26th is National Pumpkin Day! I had thought it was pretty unique to find a pink pumpkin at a Pumpkin Patch that was near to The Raptor Trust, as I had never seen this variety of pumpkin before. I was thrilled to place it in my home alongside a basket of squash; and as you can see from the image posted above, a crow seemed impressed with my unique pumpkin discovery.

However, this afternoon when I was walking to a follow-up appointment with my retinal specialist, I made another unique pumpkin discovery when I passed an array of pumpkins alongside a posh NYC brownstone. These pumpkins were most unique in that they were dressed in Halloween costumes!

Wednesday's Wisdom: There's NO Place Like Home for the Halloween Holiday



Halloween is six days away (including today), and the characters who are visiting me for the upcoming holiday, continue to impress me with their costumes and the personal stories associated with them. Those who read entries within this blog know that I have an annual ritual of writing about the characters who visit my home for the Halloween holidays. This began about five years ago when a few stragglers came to visit my succulent garden which is indoors, atop a pantry-style cabinet in my kitchen. Over the years, more and more characters have heard about my place and have come to spend time here in honor of Halloween.

A similar scenario happened in my terrace garden which is on a roof extension in NYC. My urban garden is a place where I have grown an array of cacti, flowers, herbs, ornamental grasses, plants, shrubs, trees and vines. 


In the case of my rooftop garden, Cam, a female cardinal began visiting it during the year of 2012.


When word got out about the flora I grow in my garden as well as the bird feeders I have here, more and more birds came to visit. To date, nearly twenty different types of birds have visited my place. 

Cam did not appreciate this fact for it meant she had some competition at my bird feeders, which is something she confesses in her book, Words In Our Beak, Volume One



Cam's story is set in my rooftop garden. But I've digressed! My intended topic for today is not covering the antics of birds who visit my urban garden, rather, my intention is to cover the antics of a few of the characters who are visiting me for Halloween.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Turtles in New York City's Central Park: SO HAPPY TOGETHER!


The turtles in NYC's Central Park:     
SO happy together.

Tuesday's Truths Week Fifteen: Info on the WINGED MONKEYS (seen in OZ)


With Halloween being less than a week away, there is a lot of activity going on in my home. Most of the action taking place is occurring among the cast of characters (dressed in unique Halloween costumes) who visit me on an annual basis during this time period. When they first started coming to my place, they confined their antics within the constraints of the succulent garden that I have atop a pantry-style cabinet that I have in my kitchen. 

The image atop this entry was taken a few years ago. It features a set of triplets who visited my succulent garden dressed as The Tin Man, The Scarecrow, and The Cowardly Lion, who as you may know, are the characters featured in The Wizard of Oz.

Monday, October 24, 2016



"Remembering Donna (The Wonder of DD)," pays a small tribute to Donna De Solis who was born on October 24th,1947, and died on June 25th 2015. This video was shown to her son privately, before being "aired" at a reception after her memorial service, which was held at The Church of The Blessed Sacrament on July 15th, 2015. Donna had worked for this church for nearly forty years. It is  located on Manhattan's Upper Westside, where Donna lived most of her life.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Another Halloween in my Succulent Garden


The photo atop this blog entry shows a number of characters who are meeting in my indoor succulent garden before Halloween. It's the fifth year that characters have come to visit my succulent garden for this particular holiday. As many of you know, I have a garden on my terrace where I grow cacti, herbs, ornamental grasses, plants, shrubs as well as trees. The succulent garden that I maintain inside my home, is not only for unusual cacti, it is a place that an array of characters come to visit for various occasions.

With the exception of Humpty Dumpty, Ms. Skeptic is the one who has been visiting me the longest in honor of Halloween. I've indicated her identity (number twelve within the group image below, Humpty is number 13). I've also included Ms. Skeptic's and Humpty Dumpty's solo photo-ops.





In 2011, her first year here, Ms. Skeptic was the hostess to a small group of characters, but the group of visitors has gotten much larger over the years. In fact the numbers of whimsical visitors has gotten so big, that some of them (not seen in either of these group images) have moved beyond my garden and into my main living area; taking up residence in my armoire and making themselves at home on my shelves! 

A number of the characters featured in these group photos were discussed in posts I wrote for hometalk in 2012 and 2013 under the following titles: Boo! Halloween in Both my Urban Terrace & Indoor Gardens,  Halloween Decor Indoors (mostly), Group B Wins The Coin Toss, Group A Wins The Second Coin Toss, Group C  Wins 3rd Coin Toss, Conclusion of Follow-Up Halloween Decor, Honoring National Pumpkin Day With a Contest in My Garden, and At Halloween and Always, Make New Friends, Keep the Old

In any event, this year, those visiting my succulent garden — with the exception of the four judges (seen at the far right portion of the image atop this entry and identified by white arrows in the second image above) as well as Humpty Dumpty (who is actually a permanent resident) — are here rehearsing in hopes of being the witch that is chosen to appear on America's Got Talent





All of the judges here are trying emulate Howie Mandel in order to prepare the hopefuls for a best American witch win.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Down by Hudson's Riverside




New York City has seen record-breaking temperatures over the past few days. We've reached the eighty degree mark and beyond, surpassing October weather records set in 1928. This is something I mentioned in Wednesday's blog post when I reported that a Jack-O-Lantern had spent too much time in the sun while visiting my urban garden. I've truly had wanted to go to Long Beach over these summer-like days, but, alas I had to take care of matters on the home front.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Wednesday's Wisdom:To All Jack-O-Lanterns — STAY IN THE SHADE!




For a brief time, in bygone years here on Blogger, I ran a series called Wednesday's Wisdom, and today Wednesday, October nineteenth, I am launching it again. I was prompted to do this by one of the Jack-O-Lanterns who made his annual pre-Halloween visit to my rooftop garden in NYC. He can be seen (in the first two pictures atop this entry) sunbathing as he soaks up the sun's rays while sitting on a table in my urban garden. And as you can see, he spent too many hours working on his tan, for his head caved in from the sun's heat. We've had record breaking temperatures in NYC these past few days and my Jack-O-Lantern did not realize how the heat affected his head! Therefore, he asked me to post content warning his comrades to stay in the shade when visiting gardens!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Tuesday's Truths Week Fourteen: "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."


'"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent," is a quote that's attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt, whose statue in NYC's Riverside Park can be seen in the photo atop this entry. Cam, my female cardinal (and co-author) references this quotation in her book, Words In Our Beak, Volume One.



Since today is the anniversary of ER's appearance on "What's My Line?," and also, since Tuesday is a day reserved for special truisms on my blog, I thought it would be a good time to reinforce ER's wisdom, and remind you, dear reader, that "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." 

Monday, October 17, 2016

Not a "MUMMY's Boy"



The mummy pictured in the first image is one you might recognize from my my entries re Halloween in bygone years. He has been visiting me for about five or six years now, and this year his child joined him. The little boy can be seen in the second image. He insists that the reason he has not been with him before is that he is NOT A "MUMMY's Boy!'

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Halloween Decor in my Garden + in my Hood


In two weeks it will be Halloween and in honor of the holiday, Juan V helped me do a bit of decorating in my urban garden that is on a rooftop in NYC. Some of the decorations he placed can be seen in the pictures that is atop this entry. The image features pumpkins dangling from my Continus Coggygria AKA Smokey Bush (seen in the left hand portion of the image). This picture also shows a partial view of pumpkin lights climbing on a trellis that is the “playground” for my climbing white roses.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Today's the Feast Day of Saint Teresa of Ávila



Today's the Feast Day of Saint Teresa of Ávila, In bygone years, I've written about her here on Blogger. In one of my entries, I described how her perception of prayer relates to my tending to my urban garden.

I invite you to refer to either (or both) of my posts re her as a way of learning more about this saint on her feast day. (Btw, the image atop today's entry is from a page that has more information about Saint Teresa's life.)

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Tuesday's Truths Week Thirteen: How The Bald Eagle Became America's National Bird AND Other Cool Facts!


Hello and welcome to week thirteen of Tuesday's Truths. The photo of a Bald Eagle atop this entry was taken yesterday at The Raptor Trust, a bird rehab facility in New Jersey. As you may know, dear reader, I initially learned of The Raptor Trust's existence from The Wild Bird Fund, the only bird rehab center in NYC. I made my first trip to their facility last Friday and posted this fact on Blogger on Sunday, October 9th, where I introduced Pearl, an American Robin, who is classified as "partial-Albino" by The Raptor Trust, as evidenced in the photos below.



In any event, within the aforementioned blog post, I promised that I would write about the other birds that I saw there. But I  didn't know that I would have the opportunity to return to The Raptor Trust today with a friend who wanted to give our mutual buddy (who has been recovering from an illness for a long time) an opportunity to have a day trip.

I only took a few photos yesteday as I haven't had the chance to use the ones I took this past Friday! But the photo of Pearl (directly above, as well as the image atop this entry, and the two directly below were taken yesterday.



I had hoped to get better images of the Bald Eagles who are permanent residents at the facility as I knew my intention was to post information re how the Bald Eagle became America's national bird.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Pearl, a lovely American Robin


The bird in the photograph above goes by the name of Pearl. In this picture, she can be seen in her home which is on the grounds of The Raptor Trust in New Jersey. The Raptor Trust, as you may know, either from your own experience, or from my posts here on Blogger,  is a bird rehab facility in New Jersey. I learned about the organization through The Wild Bird Fund, a bird rehab facility in NYC.

Pearl belongs to the bird type known as the American Robin (AKA Turdus migratorius). I was introduced to her this past Friday when a dear gentleman, FR, drove our mutual friend, DD-S, as well as his dog, Uli, and me from NYC to Millington New Jersey; where The Raptor Trust is located. I had the distinct honor of sharing the backseat with FR's chow chow, Uli (a nickname for Ulysses).


He is a dog you may recognize as I featured him in a post here on Blogger this past August, in honor of National Dog Day. Uli was a great travel companion and didn't bark about the fact that his animal type is not allowed within the grounds of The Raptor Trust. The reasons for their rule are obvious, even Uli understands!