Posts

They're Back - Wild Onion Removal - April 2021

Image
Everyone has a landscape enemy.  For some, it is Creeping Charlie or Clover.  For others, it is Garlic Mustard Weed.  For others, it is Wild Violets or Plantain Weeds.   Or Nutsedge.  Or Purslane.  I have ALL OF THOSE.  But, they're not my enemy.   I have one weed that bothers me more than any other.  Because it is both everywhere and nowhere.  And I have so much trouble removing.   It is the Wild Onion .   And I've been on a multi-year crusade to eradicate it from my yard.  Yet, I can't tell if I'm winning the battle.  Here - below - is the very latest of the scourge that I yanked out of the backyard. I have - so far - filled up a five gallon bucket of these Wild Onion bulbs and A LOT of soil that came out when I yank'ed them out.   I've been at this for (now) three seasons.  Started in 2019 when I started to pull them out .  Then, I went at it again last year with remova l. I've also tried to chemically alter the soil by applying Pelletized Lime over the

Mailbox Post - Small Gardening Tool Storage Idea - March 2021

Image
I was in the Menards garden center recently and came across this rack that had four mailbox posts laying on it that had my gears turning a little bit.  Turning about what?  Well, that would be #11 on my 2021 to-do list for the season :   "Figure out SMALL tool storage - like pruners, saws, gloves, hand shovels, hose washers, other smalls." Could a mailbox post and a large, metal mailbox be the solve? I've danced around various tool storage ideas and have not settled on something that I'm in love with in terms of location, size, type, utility for gardening tool storage.  But, a mailbox solves A LOT of what I'm facing:  it is weatherproof, it closes and some of the larger ones can hold a lot of things like saws, shovels, gloves, even wire and automower supplies.  I currently keep everything in the garage, but that means that when I need them, I have to out front, grab them, then come back and do the work.   This would put my most-essential tools right on hand IN the

Inherited Daffodils - Finally Bloomed - April 2021

Image
I've written about a patch of volunteer (I should have called them "inherited") Daffodils that live under the Northern Red Oak tree back in 2018 when I speculated that they were (indeed) daffodils .  But, that they never actually flowered for me since we lived here.  This patch of green shoots comes up every Spring.  There are like 16 distinct patches that sit in between the fence and the large Northern Red Oak tree that have put green shoots up that have an onion-like look and smell.   I've wondered WHY they haven't bloomed - could it be that they are too old? Or not enough light?  I haven't removed the foliage of these in previous Spring seasons in the hope that they'll collect enough energy to put off blooms the following year.   But this year?  We have *some* flowers.  Have a look at the photo below showing off some yellow flowers.  Pretty great!  Not all of them are even showing buds, but we'll get a few more this season, I think: This spot is a

2020 Disneyland Resort Pins From Disney Outlet - The Lost Year

Image
Back in March, the folks at Disney announced they were closing some of their stores as their business continues to transition to e-commerce.  That has only surely accelerated due to the pandemic.  One of those stores that was on the list of closures was near us - up in Rosemont.  Turns out, it is an outlet store.  And, I didn't know this, but Nat did (because she's been there a few times), they carry quite a bit of Disney Parks merchandise.  In particular, they carry Disneyland Park merchandise that has cycled through the park and ends up here - at the outlet with discounted prices.  Kinda neat.   With outlet prices coupled with the store closing, Nat went up there and picked up a bunch of clothes for the kids.  And, she came home with two things for me.  2020 Disneyland Park pins.  Disneyland was closed for nine of the twelve months of 2020, so it is no surprise that 2020 merchandise ended up at the outlet, right? The pins were marked $3.99 and - as you can see below - one ha

New Backyard Beds Step 1: Automower Wire Removed

Image
Back in March, I decided that one of the projects that we wanted to take on this season was the creation of clean, new, swooping bed edges in our backyard.  And, in order to figure out what I needed to do - and by who - I created a simple order of operations list of the steps as I see them . Step one:  pick up the Automower boundary and guide wire that rings the perimeter of our backyard.  I started on that project recently and have made some progress.  Here, below, is about 40% of the backyard boundary wire that I've pulled up out of the grass and collected the spikes that hold it in place. This set of wire is littered with those little pigtail plugs that connect the wire in various places that it has severed over the years.  This section of the wire has been picked up and reset various times over the years, so it wasn't that hard to pull up.  There are other parts (the remaining 60%) that hasn't moved since I put it in initially back in 2017, so it is buried in the thatch

17 Years of Blogging - Web Publishing Anniversary

Image
I suppose it is more like seventeen years and seven weeks.  I seem to have missed chronicling the 17 year mark of publishing the Web here on the blog back in February.  February 16, 2004 was my very first post on my Weblog that traveled from JoinTomCross to RhodesSchool to JakeParrillo.  But, thankfully (lol), I've brought over all of those posts to this one place online.  Seventeen years is a long time for anything. For me, it is 40% of my life.  I fell in love with the Web back in 2004 and haven't looked back.  But, plenty of you others have moved on - to other platforms and other tools.  But for me, there's a lot of joy to be putting my fingers to the keyboard and everyday: " Show up, sit down and type. " That exercise - writing something, every day, is because I fear atrophy.  As I've reached my 40's, I realize (painfully so) that my body is atrophy'ing.  But, my mind?  And the idea of creating?  I can fight that off by pushing "publish"

Dorianell's Cake Shop - Back of the Yards Chicago

Image
That's a photo of Dorianell's Cake Shop - once located at 1114 W 51st Street, Chicago, IL 60609.  It was in the Back of the Yards neighborhood, just a few blocks west and one block north of Sherman Park on Racine and Garfield. My sister Vic sent that photo to me.  And it is the first time that I'ver ever seen it.   That's where my Mom grew up.  Upstairs.  And that's her dad's bakery on the first floor.  I've heard a lot about "the bakery", but I never knew it had a name.  Nor what it looked like. Turns out, it isn't *just* a bakery; it is a "cake shop". I can't totally explain it, but this photo makes me really happy.  It also gives me so many ideas and thoughts.    I've talked about what the sign and exterior would look like if I ever did a spot of my own.  I guess I've found the name for my pizza place .  (I'm not doing a pizza place.) The name of the place?  Dorianell's?  That's a combination of my Mom and