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Through The Garden Gate……

Hi everyone!  I decided to add this blog to my It’s A Mystery To Me! blog to give myself a break from the intense subject matter discussed there.  So, here’s a place to relax a little, get to know each other, and share our lives in a bit more personal way.

So, if you need a break from the discussion next door, (I know I do!) or if you just feel like hanging out, please feel free to move the conversation  Through The Garden Gate, where the flowers never fade, the sun always shines, and the chocolate has no calories. (Don’t you wish there was a place like that?)

It really is a place where the conversation is—well, the conversation is whatever you want to make it. I’ll post about some of the things I’m interested in, and I hope you’ll do the same.




51 Comments leave one →
  1. niecey456 permalink
    October 28, 2008 12:42 am

    Hello, Beautiful Garden!!! I love gardens.

  2. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 28, 2008 12:53 am

    Thank’s Niecey-I love gardens, too. the picture in the post is in our backyard. The one at the top is a garden in Ireland we had the privilege of exploring a year ago this past July.

  3. niecey456 permalink
    October 28, 2008 12:56 am

    Both are very beautiful.

  4. niecey456 permalink
    October 28, 2008 12:59 am

    Gardening is my top hobby. I love it. I love to watch the birds, especially the hummingbirds. They are so territorial. I have a lazy one who likes to sit and get nectar. I had a bee last year that stayed in my face and if another bee flew near me he would run it off. The little critters amaze me.

  5. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 28, 2008 1:29 am

    We have two hummingbird feeders up this year and had about 15 hummers. We put the feeders on the porch so we can watch them. they are my favorite summer birds. Ours left a couple of weeks ago. Cardinals and bluebirds are my absolute favorites.

    Never had a bee fall in love with me! Had a few hummers that would come close.

  6. niecey456 permalink
    October 28, 2008 1:47 am

    I protect the bees and I think they know it. I love cardinals too. Bluebirds are one of my favorites too.

  7. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 28, 2008 1:55 am

    You should post some pictures on your blog, niecey. Have you read Secret Life of Bees? I’m gonna try and go see the movie this weekend. Loved the book.

  8. niecey456 permalink
    October 28, 2008 2:13 am

    I will have to do that. I’ve never read that, I’ll have to check it out.

  9. niecey456 permalink
    October 28, 2008 2:16 am

    I had a big vitex (chaste tree) in my yard at my old house. I grew it from a baby and it drew the most magnificent big blue and purple bees, I had never seen anything like them. I wouldn’t want to be stung by one, but like most of my bees, they appeared to be pretty docile. I have bumble bees crawl up in blooms on my flowers and sleep. You can pet them when they are resting.

  10. niecey456 permalink
    October 28, 2008 2:21 am

    Well, I’m retiring for the evening. Goodnight.

  11. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 28, 2008 2:26 am

    good night niecey.
    I look forward to hearing more about your bees. I never in a million years would touch one–too scared!

  12. October 28, 2008 6:30 am

    Beautiful blog,

    I especially like the chocolate with no calories part.

  13. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 28, 2008 11:48 am

    thank you nancy and heartcares!

  14. heartcares 2 permalink
    October 28, 2008 7:19 am

    Thanks, for a beautiful & restful place to think nice thoughts & rest our minds: Wish I was there having a coffee—(grin)
    Goodnight & Sending prayers & hugs

  15. Bonnie permalink
    October 28, 2008 2:14 pm

    Ah … the perfect place to share gossip and secrets. Now that “Indian Summer” is here we will have to grab our sweaters.

  16. niecey456 permalink
    October 28, 2008 10:48 pm

    Hello. How are you all doing today?

  17. October 28, 2008 10:52 pm

    Thank you for the invitation into your beautiful garden where friends can meet, drink coffee, and enjoy no calorie chocolate. My favorite is the darkest bittersweet….oh, what a treat! I especially love the flagstone pathway leading the way into the garden. Just this year I made of pathway, but of cypress mulch; it is still pretty.

    Yes Bonnie, Indian summer is about to wind down. As a reminder I carried in my hibiscus and eucalyptus plant, though I still have things thriving in the garden, I don’t want to take chances. As a matter of fact, I may be having fried green tomatoes for a month if it doesn’t warm up a tad. I still have spinach on the vine, and oh how lovely it is…makes a wonderful backdrop and is edible.

    I even have several strawberry plants to relocate…perhaps another day.

    Mystery, what type of gate is your favorite for your garden? Wood, iron, plastic, or do you have some other material in mind?

  18. niecey456 permalink
    October 28, 2008 10:55 pm

    I have my coffee. Isn’t the garden lovely today?

  19. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 28, 2008 11:54 pm


    Did anybody get a frost last night? We had a hard freeze and I’m afraid all my tomatoes are ruined. My husband’s working in Phoenix and called about 10:00 Pm last night telling me to try and get everything that was in pots up onto the porch.
    I think I saved most of the potted herbs, but pretty sure I lost everything in the garden.

  20. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 28, 2008 11:57 pm

    If I could live in the perfect place, it really would be a little ivy covered white cottage with blue shutters complete with a white picket fence with pink and yellow roses climbing all over it.

  21. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 28, 2008 11:58 pm

    But then, I also love rusty iron gates that squeak when you open them.

  22. October 29, 2008 12:24 am

    I apologize girls…I was busy looking at the flowers and totally lost track of the conversation.

    Luckily, most my herbs are perennials; I can only bring so much indoors. I don’t have adequate sunlight for them to thrive indoors anyway.

    I love rusty iron gates too, mystery.

    Say, have you ever tried using bailing or barb wire and stringing it from two hooks and using canvas as a liner…makes a wonderful planter. Very southwestern!

  23. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 29, 2008 12:28 am

    that’s a really good idea. I have 3 monster ferns that have completely outgrown the largest hanging baskets I can find. We hang them on the back porch in the summer and put them in the garage in the winter and they’ve survived for about 8 years now. I may try your idea next spring.

  24. niecey456 permalink
    October 29, 2008 1:32 am

    That is a neat idea. We haven’t frosted here yet. I’m in Northwest Florida.

  25. niecey456 permalink
    October 29, 2008 1:33 am

    It’s A Mystery To Me I love your vision of the perfect cottage garden.

  26. monica111466 permalink
    October 29, 2008 3:35 am

    to a place where the flowers never fade, the sun always shines, and the chocolate has no calories


    Diet is a four letter word! 🙂

  27. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 29, 2008 4:44 am

    Dontcha just wish? I’m constantly on a diet–and the older I get the more I realize how futile it all is!

  28. niecey456 permalink
    October 29, 2008 3:31 pm

    We finally frosted. Mystery, try Gwen Shamblin’s Weigh Down Diet plan. It’s actually not a diet, it’s Biblically based, and it teaches you how to moderate, and get back to your body’s natural cravings. You can stick with it, and if you falter a little you just reapply the principles. Nothing is inherently bad, so no off limits stuff. I lost over 50 lbs on it and every time I gain a little back I just get back to the principles, don’t have to reread the book, just get myself under control and I enjoy anything I want to eat. No calorie counting, no carb counting.
    The church’s used to do workshops, but I just read the book.

  29. October 29, 2008 4:31 pm

    Good afternoon ladies! It’s beautiful out today, isn’t it?

    Niecey, I’ve seen a lot of critters in my life, but never have I seen a blue bee! I get all kinds of bees; just hold my breath so they don’t sting (this technique freaks out some from other cultures). My dog unearthed some hornets a couple weeks ago, however. I was sitting out on the deck when I saw this little fat round thing buzz up and stare me down. At first I thought it was a baby hummingbird, I have had a couple of hummingbirds this year-they really like red flowers-until I realized what it was……….out of my chair I flew! Whoosh! Lickety-split!

    I don’t know what to do with that dang dog of mine!

  30. niecey456 permalink
    October 29, 2008 9:59 pm

    It was a large bee with a dark blue, almost navy blue, into black and it’s wings were inrredecent, with purple hues. I only pet the bumble bees, they are docile. Only when they are resting.

  31. monica111466 permalink
    October 29, 2008 9:59 pm

    Niecey…I would love to hear more about Gwen Shamblin’s Weigh Down Diet plan.
    I am struggling big time….I quit smoking Nov. 8, 2006…it was a 24 year nasty habit…and then October 2007 I had an emergency hysterectomy and they had to take my ovaries…so my metabolism is pretty much dead. I just signed up for Curves and am going to my doctor for b-12 shots and he gives a diet pill ( i know its not a good thing) and it is helping some…but I need something to work with…my doc suggested weight watchers or south beach with the diet pill.
    Tell me more about that plan….

  32. niecey456 permalink
    October 30, 2008 11:58 am

    It compares where you are at in your struggle to the Israelites being in bondage in Egypt. You start by praying about it and you cut your portions in half. Add more water and juice to your diet. It took me a year, but it was a life change not a diet. The book can describe it better than I can. As I don’t have the space on here and it is very detailed. She takes you on your journey through the wilderness to the promised land. As you go through your journey you will find true hunger and fullness and true cravings. I saw her on the M&J show not long ago and she’s still skinny. There is no exercise program to it, but as you progress your energy levels increase, so you naturally get more exercise. I’m still struggling with the smoking thing, my husband quit and I’m still trying to master it. God has changed so many things in me, that’s the one thing I struggle hard with. Pray for me. I’m praying for you. The book is titled as I stated above.

  33. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 30, 2008 2:05 pm

    I’ll try the book niecey. It’s probably the only diet I’ve never tried! I lost 30 lbs several years ago on South Beach Monica, and I re-lost the 10 lbs I gained when I couldn’t stand it any longer and pigged out on bread and starches, on weight watchers points system. I really like it the best of all I’ve tried
    (weight watchers)

  34. October 30, 2008 4:47 pm

    I have found the best way to lose weight is to let the dog pull me through the neighborhood…he is like Marmaduke! lol!

    I think I’m gonna be on a fried green tomato diet for a while…I have about a dozen inside and probably 20-25 still on the vine. Wow! They are softball size too!

    I’ve already dried stevia…makes tea rather sweet.I just went out and sniped some sage and basil…something fresh; going back for chives soon…after my coffee break.

    I have noticed some marigolds shooting up through the leaves…doubt they will last long. My geraniums are still hardy…that too shall end. And, my sweet peppers are still producing…it’s tempting me to bring them in, but, it would just be a big mess to clean up later.

    I still have to clean out a bird’s nest from a ceramic house I had attached to the brick. There is no back hatch so I guess I’ll try the Hoover maneuver! Lol!

  35. October 30, 2008 6:02 pm

    Update: That’s 35 green tomatoes! Jeez! All humongous! I actually counted them (for lack of anything better to do I suppose).

    My ornamental gourds didn’t make it…oh well!

    Got the bird bath cleaned and ready for those thirsty, migrating, and those that are left behind, creatures. As far as I’m concerned the bluejays can keep on truckin’…they are vicious attack birds. I welcome the hummingbirds, cardinals, finches, woodpeckers, and whatever else shows up.

    I’ve pinched back the rosemary…afraid it won’t make it through the winter. How does your rosemary do mystery?

  36. niecey456 permalink
    October 30, 2008 8:16 pm

    Congratulations on your harvest Cj. I have to clean my bird baths this weekend. We had a light frost the other night, and my flower garden is pretty thick so it didn’t do much damage. I have a Cassia tree in full bloom, along with Mexican bush sage, Autumn sage, Pineapple sage, and many more. I didn’t grow any food this year, just flowers. But hey Cj, Rosemary usually is evergreen here in Northwest Florida, unless we have a really hard winter and then it dies and doesn’t come back. We do have hard freezes, but we can grow Bottlebrush trees without them being damaged, unless it gets in the teens, but that doesn’t happen too often.

  37. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 30, 2008 9:08 pm

    Hi–I’ve been kind of out of pocket the last few days–Went to Dallas yesterday to see a play and then had to go back today to pick my husband up at the airport–he flies out on Mon and back in on Thursdays. Anyway, between that and watching my grandbaby, Carter, I’ve been too tired to do anything but read blogs.

    We’ve planted several rosemary bushes over the years, but only one survived, and it’s pretty big. (4 or 5 feet) It stays green all winter but is quite ugly! We still have basil, and even though I think it’s an annual, it comes back year after year. Thyme grows along one of our paths and returns yearly, and our oregano comes back, too. We have to re-plant the rest of herbs every year. I don’t mind–I just love the idea of having an herb garden-and have gotten better about using them since we moved them closer to the house.

  38. October 31, 2008 4:32 pm

    Hope you enjoyed the play…what did you see? I loved the Dallas Museum of Art, it’s not Santa Fe but it is something to see.

    Yes, rosemary isn’t attractive, mystery…it smells good though. I’m thinking of bringing in the lavender. I’m not much on house plants like I used to be. If I lived in Florida I would need to bring in anything I suppose, huh Niecey? It must be beautiful around your place.

    Guess I’ll spend some time tomorrow mulching leaves…it’s that time of the year again! Jeez! I think this winter I’ll do some garden construction. I think I had more produce than what I actually gathered. I noticed yesterday the dog had snatched a small cantelope to play with…hmmm! Caught him doing the same thing with my lemon cucumbers this year. Perhaps I can get things on trellis or arbors next year.

  39. niecey456 permalink
    October 31, 2008 8:14 pm

    Hey Cj, we freeze, so we go through the winter cycle. We just don’t usually have hard freezes. It gets really hot in the summer though. It is pretty right now though. My husband built me a pergola over a flagstone patio, the garden around it is surrounded by a brick knee wall, so it’s like a court yard. I enjoy it.

  40. itsamysterytome permalink*
    October 31, 2008 11:23 pm

    We saw “Menopause the Musical”. I’m going to post a blog about it tomorrow. Very funny.

    I love the Dallas Museum of Art, too. I just love Dallas. Don’t think I could live there though–way too much traffic.

    Niecey your pergola and surrounding area sounds beautiful!

  41. niecey456 permalink
    November 1, 2008 1:54 pm

    Thanks Mystery! How are you today?

  42. itsamysterytome permalink*
    November 1, 2008 5:43 pm

    Good! Apparently the frost didn’t get our tomatoes and we’re making another batch of pasta sauce to freeze. Looking around trying to find a green tomato relish recipe, but haven’t found one that looks interesting yet.

  43. niecey456 permalink
    November 1, 2008 6:18 pm

    Sounds good. I’ll keep my eyes open. If I find any in my recipes, I’ll share.

  44. Bonnie permalink
    November 3, 2008 6:29 pm

    Hi to All –

    I’m the best friend who took Mystery to the Menopause musical – you have to see it with a good friend, as you recognize each other in the characters.

    It goes along with this website of 5 things to do each day to stay sane –

    One is to connect with friends – so we are at least doing one thing right!

    PS – Mystery – I forgot to get some of those tomatoes!! 😦

  45. niecey456 permalink
    November 3, 2008 10:09 pm

    Hi Bonnie! Great article, thanks for sharing. I would love to see the Menopause Musical. I checked their site and they aren’t coming close. I’ll keep checking, sounds like a hoot!
    I hope everyone is doing well today!!!

  46. niecey456 permalink
    November 3, 2008 10:21 pm

    Mystery, did you find your green tomato relish recipe? I’m still looking.

  47. itsamysterytome permalink*
    November 4, 2008 1:09 pm

    Not yet Niecey ,

    I’ve found hot dog relish and piccallily but not the one I’m looking for.

    It’s chunks of green tomatoes and onions and it’s kind of hot and kind of sweet, so it must have jalapenos and sugar. I don’t think it has any other veges in it.

    It’s served cold at a local catfish restaurant as a side and it’s just delicious. They make it and sell it but of course won’t share the recipe.

  48. motherclucker permalink
    December 23, 2008 12:24 pm

    Wheeeee! Here I am…oh your garden is so lovely, I could stay here all day. And the extra plus is that all my favorite people are here. I started another blog too, since my regular MotherClucker blog inadvertantly turned into a blog about the Caylee case….LOL! I’ve got a link to it on my blog…I hope you have a wonderful holiday! Now, I’m off to explore in the garden..ta ta!

  49. itsamysterytome permalink*
    December 25, 2008 7:44 pm

    Thanks, motherclucker! I tried to find the link to your new blog on your regular one, but couldn’t. Could you re-post it?

  50. motherclucker permalink
    December 27, 2008 11:36 pm

    Hey Mystery, Sorry it took me so long to answer you…the actual link to my other blog is If you go to my MotherClucker blog I have the link under The Associates and it says MotherClucker’s Other Blog…and again I’m sorry it took me 2 days to answer you…

  51. itsamysterytome permalink*
    December 30, 2008 7:34 pm

    I love it motherclucker!!! Thanks for the link.

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