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Greetings Visitors!

Heads-up, if you are in need of an evergreen wreath, candle centerpiece, cute and festive table décor, door swags or other evergreen creations, and live locally to my neck of the woods and nearby towns, please stop by on Friday, December 14th, at the Ellington Winter Market, 11 Pinney Street in the YMCA Building, 4:00 pm to 6:30 pm.

I will be there tucked in the corner surrounded by evergreens.  It is a great opportunity to pick up a hostess gift if you are on your way to a holiday gathering, a festive item to dress up your home, and holiday presents for your family and friends.  We know we all have very busy schedules this time of year, however, it only takes a few seconds to swing on your way to shopping malls or gatherings.  You will find other wonderful homemade and hand-crafted local gifts at the market – it is their Holiday Festival Date this Friday at the Ellington Winter Market.

At the Market

Cathy T at the Market

Yesterday, because I wasn’t exactly sure where the YMCA Building is located, I decided to take a ride after picking up my cat from the vet.  Here was my cat, meowing louder than a hungry baby in the car, and me driving down Windsorville Road.  The cat was becoming so loud, I accidentally took a left onto Pinney Road (instead of Pinney Street).  It didn’t take long for me to discover my error, I should have continued straight down Windsorville Road to the rotary.  Follow the rotary circle and take the 4th exit onto Rt 286/Pinney Street.  The YMCA Building is on your right shortly thereafter.  There is plenty of parking in the front.  http://mapq.st/UBgg6g

You know, I’ve never been inside this building before.  It is amazing how many new places I’m introduced to in town from the markets and my garden presentations, from libraries to churches.  Makes me realize, I need to check out my local offerings more often!  Shame on me!

There are many services, sometimes services which are free, which we overlook.  In fact, this afternoon I plan to go visit the new Vernon Community Arts Center at 709 Hartford Turnpike.  Up to Sunday, December 23, they are showcasing 70 local artists works.  Hours vary, so visit www.vernonarts.org to find the times, but I definitely want to go there to get some unusual holiday gifts.  And support our motivated and talented local artists.

I also have to make it out to the East Windsor Trolley Museum to see Jeannie Pomeroy-Murphy sing.  She is a local friend from my high school class, and I still haven’t made it out there – shame on me!  The CT Trolley Museum is having their Winterfest every weekend until Sunday, December 30th.  Great for kids because of the ride of lights on the antique trolleys.  For hours, visit www.ct-trolley.org.  They took a hit earlier this year, when someone stole items, which I read about in the newspaper.  This is the perfect time of year to help them recoop from the impact, by utilizing their services and seeing Jeannie sing too – support our local venues, they need us.

Maybe we need a tour bus arranged so we can be shuttled to all the local events as it seems they can be easily overlooked or there just doesn’t seem to be enough time in the day.  As for myself, I haven’t even started my Christmas shopping – I might as well have fun while doing it – so going to local events is one great way to do so.  Cathy T

Cathy T’s Landscape Designs
Email:  cathy.testa@aol.com

Cool wet morning

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On this cool, wet rainy morning, I’d like to post a few quick reminders of items on the gardening agenda:

Painting on Silk

My next DIY Class offering is scheduled on Tuesday, February 21st, 5:30 pm.  A complete description is available via the DIY Classes link on this blog.  Hope you will join us as this is a rare opportunity to learn an amazing technique of dyeing fabrics with the world of nature’s colors by an talented guest artist, and she is local to Broad Brook, CT.

Following this class, next on list is a topic focused on “Garden Maintenance.”  Save the date: March 22nd.  I’ve invited a Master Gardener who does strictly garden maintenance as a job “every day.”  She will be sharing lots of tips and advice.  Learn from someone who is offering hands-on experience and guidance on the how-to’s of garden maintenance.  See DIY Classes.

Cathy T’s Garden Talks

I was lucky enough to be invited to speak at Our Savior Lutheran Church in South Windsor, CT this week.  Such a wonderful group attended with much enthusiasm for gardening, and yummy desserts following my presentation on Container Gardening with a special focus on color and textures with the how-to’s included.  One attendee told me afterwards she had never seen someone speak about plants in containers the way I did.  Let’s just say, I get passionate about it.  This talk is scheduled again on March 20th, Tuesday at “Stir The Pot” in East Windsor, CT and April 17, Tuesday at Hall Memorial Library in Ellington, CT.  See the CALENDAR link on this blog for more details.  We’d love to see you there.

CT Flower and Garden Show

I can’t believe this show is starting next week already!  Held at the Hartford Convention Center in downtown Hartford on Thursday, February 23rd through Sunday, February 26th.  Whether you are an avid gardener or not, you will enjoy the show full of inspiration from many people in the business and garden lovers.  And if you are local to my hometown, or nearby, and would like to join the carpool ride I’m arranging with breakfast included, see my CALENDAR link on this blog for the details.  When you go to the show, don’t overlook the seminar speakers held on the upper level of the convention center, called the Ballroom Floor.  Seminars are held all day as part of your entrance ticket to the show.  Some folks overlook this benefit of the show’s offerings because they don’t realize they are happening above the main show floor filled with landscape and gardening displays.  The speaker list is amazing. See www.ctflowershow.com and click on SEMINARS for the listing of speakers and times.

Philadephia Flower Show

And right after that – I head to Philadelphia for their flower show in early March.  This when the inspiration will kick into high gear.  Oh yah, Longwood Gardens – I want to see that too.  Well, better go – much to prepare for!  See this link for more on Philly:  http://www.theflowershow.com/ShowInfo/index.html

Have a great weekend, Cathy T