It’s plumeria season…..

at TheGreatWall…..
Time to burn your eyes out with photos of the plumeria that,so far,are in magnificent bloom this year.
So get ready…..
Here they are….






Don’t worry.
There are still some in bud.
Including the blue one
So,you will still get to see some more this summer

Doing the happy dance around here…….

It’s official…..

Plumeria season has started !!!
The first bud has opened….


:: Doing the Happy Dance ::

Stay tuned for more……….

Once upon a time…..

I was into thinking I was an artist.
And wanted to be a painter.
Actually,all I wanted was artwork on the walls of the house.

So,I tried my hand at painting with acrylics…..

Oils take to long for me,and Lord knows I have no patience……

Obviously,I’m drawn to beachy things…

And tropical things…..

But I think the best thing
–at least,I think so- 
I’ve ever done
and my most favoritest

is this portrait that I call
“Mom At The Beach”


It makes me think of my mother.
She loved the beach.
And she always wore a bathing cap.
She worried about her hair-do.
And I think she’d hate this painting…..

But it makes me think of her and her love of the beach.

I just may start painting again……..

The best Christmas present ever…………

I grew up a total daddy’s girl.
After two boys,my mother was overjoyed to have a girl.She tried dressing my in frou-frou clothes.
Totally,didn’t work.
But I wanted to be with my dad.

In his garden,in the summer.
And,in the winter,in his greenhouse.

And when Michael,the Elder,was born,guess who held my hand?
Yep-my Dad.
Michael’s dad was in the Navy and was away,on a ship.It was the Vietnam era,after all.

Readers of this blog know my Dad loved his orchids.
That’s why he built the greenhouse.To house them in the winter.

Fast forward,about 50 + years.After my mother passed,and it was time for him to go to an ALF,he let me have his orchids.
The only advice he gave me was,”Don’t baby them.They grow in the mountains for God’s sake.They can take a lot.”

I tried to follow his advice,and ignored them.
I’m good at benign neglect.Very,very good….
And they bloomed.

We actually divided the largest up and gave one to Erich,the Younger.
He’s a gardener just like his Grandpa.Oh,so very like his Grandpa.

But,after he died three years ago,they stopped blooming.
Oh shit!
What have I done?
It’s been three years,since my Dad passed,and not a bloom….

But,today,on my walk-about thru the garden,and the lanai,I found this….

Merry Christmas!!!!

Christmas decorating at TheGreatWall


It’s a start…………

An oldy but goody recipe….

I posted this cake on Instagram and was asked for the recipe…..

I found this Chocolate Chip Cake recipe,over 40 years ago.
In an old Better Homes & Garden magazine.
I was newly married,and thought it looked like something I could easily make.
I made and it was a hit!
I made it a few times after that.
Two baby boys joined the family.They loved it,too.
But then I ‘lost’ the recipe.
Meaning I put it somewhere and couldn’t find it.
After the kitchen was reno’d,and I was unpacking things,
and putting them away,
there it was!
Screaming,”Make me!”
So,today,I finally got around to it.


And if you want to make it
it’s sooo easy
here ya go…

Chocolate Chip Loaf Cake
2 C sifted all purpose flour
1 C firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 C granulated sugar
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 C vegetable shortening
1 C milk
3 eggs
1/2 C semisweet chocolate pieces
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
Shadow Frosting

Grease a 9x5x3 loaf pan;line bottom with wax paper;grease paper.
Measure flour,brown sugar,granulated sugar,baking powder,salt,baking soda,shortening,and milk into large bowl of electric mixer.Add eggs.chocolate and vanilla
Beat 1/2 minute at low speed,scraping sides of bowl constantly.Increase speed to high;beat 3 minutes scraping side of bowl several times.Turn into prepared pan.
Bake at 350* i hour and 20 minutes,or until center springs back when lightly pressed..Cool on wire rack about 40 minutes.Remove from pan;cool completely.
Frost with Shadow Frosting.

Shadow Frosting
2 /c 10x sugar””
1/2 C vegetable shortening
1 tsp vanilla
4T hot milk
1 square unsweetened chocolate
1/2 tsp shortening
Combine 10x sugar,shortening,vanilla and milk in a small bowl.Beat at high speed about 10 minutes or until frosting is very fluffy.Spread on top and sides of cake.
Melt chocolate with shortening.Drizzle over sides of frosted cake for shadow effect.



Growing my own…..

Turmeric,that is….
After reading others’ blogs about growing their own turmeric,I thought I’d give it a try.
After all,it’s supposed to be good for you
I like the flavor turmeric gives to food,so what do I have to lose? Love it in scrambled eggs!
So,the next time I was at my local farmer’s market,I bought some.I already had the pot and the potting soil.
So,pot away I did….IMG_2059

Looks kinda gross,doesn’t it?

And this is what I got…


So,we shall see if I get some turmeric of my own….

My Dad always said gardening is one big experiment….

Did you ever try this kind of thing?