Friday, July 24, 2009

Botanical Gardens Concert: The Wallflowers

A trip to the Denver Botanical Gardens is such a treat. When the reason for the trip is a concert, you are pretty much on sensory overload. Dave and I had tickets to see the Wallflowers. We took a picnic, ate our dinner, and then strolled around the gardens, listening to the music, which can be heard clearly throughout. My favorite song was Jacob Dylan's "One Headlight." Here are some of the sights we saw.

At the Monet water garden.

One of so many beautiful plantings.

This is an espalliered tree, an apple tree built to grow upon a frame. I want Dave to build me such a frame so I can try this technique.

Dave, posing!

We came upon three sleeping beauties!

I am always interested in what they are doing with the vegetable gardens. I liked the growing screens, made of 2x4 and chicken wire. I am going to build one to try myself next year.

I have never had much luck in getting peas or beans to grow up these kind of poles.

The only dark spot of the evening was when I started down my favorite pathway at the Gardens and found that all of the crabapple trees that lined one side were gone. These are the remaining ones, on the opposite side of the path.

This is the sight where there used to be crabapple trees.

This is what that fence hid--a mountain of dirt full of root balls. I was speechless. I still am.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

My Sisters Visit Colorado

My two sisters, Leslie and Karen, made a visit to Colorado last week. It was a wonderful treat for me to see and spend time with them. I am the oldest. Leslie, who comes behind me in line, had last been here about four years ago. Karen, the youngest of us three, was last in Colorado in 1992, and had never seen my current house.

We went up to Estes Park on one of the days they were here. I really hadn't planned it, but we ended up driving to the top of Trail Ridge Road. It was perfect--they really enjoyed it and what spectacular views. Once we parked at the alpine visitor's center, we hiked up the trail to the top, and then after returning down, we had lunch at the Cafe in the Clouds. The food was good--barbeque!

Here are some shots. Karen and I are taking in the views.

Elk grazing in the distance.

Karen conquers the peak.

After we got back down to Estes Park, we stopped at the Stanley Hotel to have a look around and talk about how scary "The Shining" was. Then we zipped back to Louisville to pick up David and go to the Friday night Street Faire. We stopped at my friend, Janet's, frame shop and then headed over. While wandering around, we ran into my friend Catherine and her visitor, Holly. Here is a shot that David took of all six of us 'girls'.

The next afternoon, we went over to Catherine's house for a cocktail. Ian, her ex, was there and it was a wonderful visit. Here are Leslie, Karen, Catherine, and Ian.

With my dear friend, Catherine.

The Foster Sisters.

That evening, we packed up a picnic and went to see "To Kill A Mockingbird" at the Colorado Shakespeare Festival. It was just about perfect--a wonderful way to end the visit. The next morning I took them to the airport. I can't wait until they come back!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Jamming with the Big Guys

At the end of the High Mountain Hay Fever Festival on Sunday, Dave and I went to a party at Ron Thomason's house. I had a great time and got to jam with some top-notch musicians: Brian Aldridge and Tom Boyd from Dry Branch Fire Squad; Dave Kirk from the Country Gentlemen; and Adam McIntosh, Jon McIntosh, and Wayne Haddix from Jett's Creek. I was the only woman jamming in the group. I really had a blast and was thrilled to play with them.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Workshop Stage at High Mountain Hay Fever

The High Mountain Hay Fever Festival, that we go to every year, boasts a nice complement of workshops--two days worth. This year, the guy in charge of the workshop stage was none other than David Okay Patton himself. He looked quite serious right before the start of the first workshop.

Now, typically a festival offers workshops that are simply an instrument class, taught by one or two of the performers in the festival. HMHF is the exception. They offer some of the most interesting classes I've seen. Here's a listing of the schedule.


Comedy in Performance with Aaron Wolking, The Moron Brothers, and Ron Thomason

The Country Gentlemen "Tradition" with Randy Waller and the Country Gentlemen

The Trials and Adventures of Starting a Band with Jett's Creek

Putting the DRIVE in Bluegrass with the Larry Gillis Hard Drivin' Bluegrass Band

The Role of Radio in Traditional Country and Bluegrass Music with Joe Mullins

More than a Half Century Performing Traditional Bluegrass Gospel Music with The Sullivan Family

The Baddest Square Dance in Colorado with local rancher Tom Young,"Dancin' Queen" Heidi Clare, et al

10:15 - ??? High Mountain Hoot Owl Concert/Jam led by Dave Patton of Coal Creek Bluegrass and you never know who might hit the stage.


Meet the Legendary George Shuffler with Ron Thomason, et al

Bluegrass Guitar with George Shuffler, Mike Wolking, Adam McIntosh, et al

Bluegrass Banjo with Joe Mullins, Larry Gillis, Adam Poindexter, et al

Meet Leroy Troy !

Mini Concert featuring Heidi Clare and an unnamed accompanist

Bluegrass Mandolin with Brian Aldridge, Mike Terry and Joe Wolking

Mini Concert featuring Jett's Creek

The Baddest Square Dance in Colorado -- The Sequel, with local rancher Tom Young, "Dancin' Queen" Heidi Clare, et al

The most popular workshops were the ones taught by Ron Thomason. He was the unnamed accompanist who performed a mini concert with Heidi Clare. The room was fulled to overflow and Dave had to stand outside the door and turn people away in order to try to stay within 50 people of the fire code limit. Leroy Troy pulled in a big crowd. The square dances were packed. These square dances had more than your typical square dance band: Dry Branch Fire Squad themselves accompanied Heidi with the music. We danced the first night; it was chaos--a lesson in how to feel stupid! We were in a square with a young, excited couple who were a lot of fun. Another girl in our square had her act together and kept the rest of us on track.

We played the Hoot Owl concert with the guys in the Moron Brothers and the mandolinist from the Country Gentlemen. It was great fun and we raised $132 for the clinic. When we were playing, the young couple from the square dance came in; they appeared astonished to see us playing. I told Dave that they probably didn't think we were coordinated enough to play our instruments!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Indigo Girls

On Monday, July 6, Dave and I went to see the Indigo Girls at Chautauqua. It was a mob scene with a huge lesbian contingent, as there always is for their shows. The show was sold out and there were a ton of people outside of the auditorium with chairs and blankets, who were going to listen out there.

The opening act was Gregory Alan Isakov. He was okay, but rather bland. All of the songs sounded the same to me. Yep, blah.

The crowd lit up with the entrance of Emily and Amy. Their songs sounded just great. As we watched, I thought to myself that they are really a big act. They had a stand with probably fifteen guitars on it, and a woman came out and gave them different instruments to play for every song.

They were having a good time and really knew that the fans in the audience knew the words to their songs. Sometimes they turned it over to the audience to sing a verse.

Dave went to the bathroom right before the show started. He came back and said that there were more women than men in the men's room. The ladies room had such a line that a lot of the girls came in the men's room so they wouldn't miss the start of the show!

It was a fun night.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

We Like the Ozo Jam

Dave and I like going to the jam at Ozo's Coffee Shop in Boulder on Sunday afternoons. This past Sunday, our friends Brian and Judy were in town and met us over there. Brian was the original bass player in Dave's band, Coal Creek. He lives in Louisville now but still owns his house here in Coal Creek Canyon. It's always great to see he and his wife Judy when they come to town.

Here Dave with the jam host, Richard.

That's Brian on the bass, and our friend Dr. Barry on the mandolin.

A fun time was had by all.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Progress in the Garden!

The garden is coming along beautifully, due to all of the rain we've had. Here are some shots.

The perennial bed.

The potager garden.

The grapevines are going wild climbing up the arbor.

Spaghetti squash.

Cabbages and corn.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Blue Canyon Boys Show at the BandShell

Even though it has rained every day for the last two months (or nearly), it didn't occur to us that the 4th of July might be the same. We packed up our camera, and headed out to the Boulder BandShell to see the Blue Canyon Boys.

It was pretty as we drove into town; we were sure we'd get a break. Once we got there, the City of Boulder staff made sure to do a lot of talking about their various sister cities, while the audience anxiously watched the clouds rolling in.

The Bandshell is a great place. When we first moved here, it was in disrepair and nearly torn down. Thankfully, the city decided to renovate it instead. It's a great place to go hear music, right in the middle of Boulder, close to the Boulder Creek.

Well, after two or three songs it started to sprinkle. Then it started to rain. Then it started to pour. Ugh. We moved under the trees to try to stay halfway dry. We lasted quite a while. The rain stopped; the sun peeked through. BUT when the clouds started to come in again, we headed for the car. The Blue Canyon Boys sounded great.

We finished up the day at the house of our jamming buddy, Barry, and his wife, Penny, for a great barbeque, potluck and pick. Overall a good holiday.