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Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – April 2014

April 15, 2014

Lots of flowers this month, both indoors and outdoors.



s100_9583 Begonia albopicta







And a Passiflora citrina that only just missed GBBD:


And outdoors:

Lots of violas: s100_9587







And strawberries and several more flowers in the pot tower and the bag hanging on the wall:









Harvest Monday – April 14, 2014

April 14, 2014

Once again, the day has been long and the night will be short, so pictures and few words. I’ve had a couple of decent harvests this week – I can hardly keep up with all these greens!




Harvest Monday – April 7, 2014

April 7, 2014

I’m making an attempt at regular posting… there will certainly be more Last King of Osten Ard-related stuff (oh my god. I have never, online or in real life, been to a party like the one last weekend.

So once again not many words. My brain is fried.



There have been salads. Mostly of mizuna. And some random other stuff that needed to be eaten. I still have radishes from the community garden, if they haven’t gone mouldy in the fridge yet. I have been really bad at eating food before it goes bad anyway, the last couple of months, and this past week has just been insane. Being in the inner circle means that for me, the insanity started a couple of days earlier than for most other people, but even I didn’t expect how crazy things would get once the news went public…

OK, shutting up and going to bed now. I have no brain cells left, and my hands hurt from too much typing all weekend.

[The Last King of Osten Ard] Have Some Cake

April 6, 2014

Last King of Osten Ard

I meant to post all sorts of things, like some of Tad’s words about his new epic, and maybe quote stuff from my diary from last summer – I scribbled for five hours straight on the train home from Stuttgart, where Tad told us he was returning to Osten Ard. But I’ve been partying for nearly five hours with no moment to breathe, plus I don’t even know how many hours pre-partying and preparing stuff, including this cake.

Which, in case it’s not obvious (it was decorated with more enthusiasm than skill, after all), has a map of Osten Ard on it, and the symbol of the League of the Scroll, because that’s our name for the seven of us who knew about Tad’s plans months ago.


We are the Seven
who knew

We are the Seven
who stayed true

We are
Ylvs, the mother
Magpie, the gardener
Libra, the keeper
Cyan, the blue
Firsfron, the teacher
Olaf, the collector
Sahi, our Lady Porcupine

We kept his secret
But now we can tell

We are the League of the Scroll


(Magpie, by the way, is the name I use on Smarch)

I haven’t seen the message board this busy in years. Many years. It’s glorious. I’m sitting here at nearly 5 AM, in the middle of my mealybug-induced mess, grinning and giggling and bouncing and kicking my feet, celebrating with old friends and new – it might “only” be an online party, but in many ways, that is so much better for me than a “real-life” party. And I don’t see it as any less real. Whether we occupy the same physical space or “only” the same virtual space, we’re friends coming together to celebrate awesome news (and I don’t think I’ve celebrated this much since the last Harry Potter book came out.)

So, yeah, I don’t know what the point of this post is, except that I wanted to share this cake, and a bit of my excitement about Last King.

Going Back to Osten Ard, Going Back to Osten Ard, Going Back to Osten Ard! (Yes, This Needed to Be Said Three Times)

April 4, 2014

I really need to go to sleep, but I really need to post this first:

In this new trilogy, Williams journeys back to the magical land of Osten Ard and continues the story of beloved characters King Simon and Queen Miriamele, married now for thirty years, and introduces newcomer Prince Morgan, their heir apparent. Also expanded is the story of the twin babies born to Prince Josua and Lady Vorzheva—a birth heralded by prophecy, which has been the subject of feverish fan speculation since the release of To Green Angel Tower in 1993.

In The Last King of Osten Ard, Williams returns with the ingenious worldbuilding, jaw dropping twists and turns, and unparalleled storytelling that have made him one of fantasy’s brightest stars for more thirty years.

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know I’m perhaps a little obsessed with Tad Williams, and have met him several times.

Almost exactly a year ago, I was getting all excited because Tad had said he’d write about Osten Ard again. And then, for all we knew, it was only going to be one book.

And then a few months later, I met Tad in Germany. And we were sitting outside his hotel having drinks and ice cream and now I can finally say that this was what had me keysmashing and giggling madly every time I tried to write about it was exactly this: that there would not just be a new Osten Ard book, there would be a new Osten Ard TRILOGY.

And this is Tad. Everything turns into four books. So I’ll believe the “trilogy” part when I hold the last book in my hands. We’ll see if it’ll actually be just The Witchwood Crown, Empire of Grass, and The Navigator’s Children, or if Tad will have to come up with yet another title…


I can’t tell you how excited I was when I heard this was going to be announced – I literally fell off the couch and rolled around on the floor. It’s been a long couple of months that me and my fellow Scrollbearers have kept that secret.
And now the announcement has come a little earlier than we expected – there was going to be cake, and a more organized post, and a party at the Quiller’s Mint. Instead you just get my half-asleep babbling as I bounce on my bed and grin broadly. And the party will happen anyway, I’m sure, and there will be cake later.

And now you know what this was about. Now I’m allowed to tell.

Well, Shit

April 3, 2014

I already had scale insects this year (well, my plants did, not me personally… that would be weird), and apparently got rid of them.

And now…



And of course they are on the hard-to-replace plants, so even though my first instinct was, “kill it! Kill it with fire!” I won’t actually throw them out. Not like it would do much good anyway, since they were right in the middle of the crowded living room window, so there are probably more mealybugs on other plants and I just haven’t seen them yet.

So, yay, more weekends with the neem bottle. More dirt all over the flat and especially in the bathroom. Yeah, I really needed this.

Keep your fingers crossed that it’ll be as effective with the mealybugs as it seemed to be with the scale.

Harvest Monday Tuesday – April 1, 2014

April 1, 2014

I went to the community garden last week to harvest the few vegetables that survived the winter and the hares – of which the latter were the bigger problem by far.


I found enough greens for a small bowl of salad, and a leek (the first leek I have ever grown), and a couple of radishes that I apparently didn’t weigh or take a picture of.

Yesterday I was all ready to start posting here more, but then I came home from running some errands to find the Tad Williams message board exploding with excitement about something I can’t talk about until next week (I’m one of a handful of people who Know Things, the official announcement should follow soon…) So we’ll see how this “blog more” plan will go now…


Also, this is my 666th post. I like this number.


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