Archive for March 2011

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

This One's For You Aunty Nancy!

Move along people.  There's nothing to see here.......unless you are my favorite Aunty Nancy.  Then you can stop and stay a while.

You see, I read your last blog post about retiring from the blogging world this week.

You explained that your Multiple Sclerosis has slowly begun to take away the strength in your  2 able bodied typing fingers. Blogging has become a bit of a chore.


I love reading about you, Uncle Ben and all those GRANDKIDS!  I'm really gonna miss your blog posts.  How am I gonna keep up with all your comings and goings NOW?!  Are you SURE you wanna retire?  Maybe you can find a volunteer blogger who could stop by your place and do all the typing for you.

I would do it for you but unfortunately you decided to move FIVE hours drive away from us.  What were you THINKING?!

In the meantime, Danny Boneduce would LOVE to entertain you for 8 straight minutes with a FABULOUS gypsy melody that can only be played by the young and reckless.

I KNOW you will be able to appreciate the hand-eye coordination required to make this masterpiece happen.

Love your most adoring niece and namesake;

Tamara Nancy Jansen


Monday, March 14, 2011

Channeling Kate Middleton

Have you been following all the Royal Wedding buzz lately?  I have been faithfully checking blogs, flipping through magazines and generally keeping right up on what Kate Middelton is planning for her upcoming nuptials.  In the process, I have really been influenced by her wonderful sense of fashion.  I finally decided that this weekend was a perfect time to wear my most recent wardrobe addition.......

My brand new HAT!  Yup, that's me in my newly acquired head dress which I decided to wear for my niece's wedding this weekend.   What a shocking resemblance to the Bride-to-be, Kate, wouldn't you say?!  And yet, all is not quite as it seems under that lovely hat.  As a matter of fact, I have a ROYAL little secret under all that feathers and netting.   I am certain the newspapers would have a field day about this itty bitty secret if it was poor little Miss Middelton in the picture.

You see........

I had an unfortunate mishap with a pretzel the night before the wedding and I ended up swallowing one of my temporary front teeth by accicent.
Seeing as I am not a member of the Royal Family, I was not able to have my tooth repaired by the in-house dentist before the early morning wedding ceremony.  Nope, this poor commoner had to attend the event "au naturaal".  Good thing all the camera's were pointed at the BRIDE and not at me!

Kate?  Are you out there? Take my advice and make SURE you have an on-call dentist at the PALACE the day before the wedding.  Who knows if you don't bite down into your early morning English Muffin and suddenly lose a tooth that day?  You can never be TOO prepared.  Trust me on this one.

Now, I must say that the wedding was just beautiful.  Kate could have gotten some great ideas for her big bash from my sister.  The candy buffet ended up being the hit of the party, in my opinion.  However, all the cutey patootey grandchildren were also adorable.

But, why just take MY word for it?  You be the judge....

The whole party was a grand family affair.  Together we all set up the church and the reception hall the night before.  Everyone pitched in to set the tables....

decorate the hall.....

and stuff party favor bags.

My sister Lisa, mother of the bride, decided to do a CANDY BUFFET for the event.

and it turned out so beautiful that I'm thinking I may have to do one for my darling OPERA DIVA and her main squeeze who plan to get married next October.

 Planning for their upcoming even has kicked into high gear now that they have finally chosen a date.  Their party planner is very excited about the chosen THEME which just happens to be "A Venetian Romance" complete with masks.......

Palatial backdrops......

and wedding cake to match!

Hey, Lisa?  Are you up to the challenge?!  I mean, the cake you made for Junior was amazing.  Wanna give it another try?!

I'd better hurry up and sign off now.  It turns out that the beautiful lillies that went in to my favorite Big Box store this morning are missing UPC stickers.

You know what that means.  That means its going to be another exciting day at Darvonda today.

So, until next time, blogger peeps.  I hope to fill you in on some of the sister bonding time me and my siblings managed to squeeze in before the wedding......

but first we have a few post-wedding chores to finish around here.  There are dishes to wash and pack away before anymore fun can happen.  Lisa will be here in just a few minutes with her apron and rubber gloves, right Lisa?!
 Judging by the smile on your can't WAIT to dig in and get it all cleaned up!


Friday, March 11, 2011

Doing Business Via Blackberry

It's Orchid week at Darvonda Nurseries and as usual......nothing goes smoothly!  The poor grower in California who supplies us with orchids had to pack 3 semi-trucks full in under 2 days, not nearly enough time.  And all because our beautiful cellophane papers we use for wrapping the pots up nicely were couriered to ONTARIO by accident.   Nobody noticed they were missing until they were ready to start packing the plants onto the deliver carts.  After much stressing and telephone calls, our papers finally arrived and everything was packed in a rush so it could land in our greenhouse before the weekend.

The minute the product entered our facility, we had one last "designer touch" we needed to add.  Just a little tuft of color coordinated sisal to give it an edgy texture.

What is SISAL, you might ask.  I know all of my Darvonda peeps were wondering as well.

Can you see that WHITE HAIRY STUFF on top of the leaves?  THAT is SISAL.  Unfortunately, I was the only one who knew how I wanted to SISAL to be added to the orchid for the most attractive way of accenting the plant and I was in Vancouver for the day.

Junior messaged me on his Blackberry "Like THIS?!"

"No, no, no.  More fluffed up!"  I messaged back on my Blackberry.

"Like THIS??!!"  came the next enquiry.
"Not really.  It should look a little more like a bird's nest " I respond.

"How's THIS???!!!" Junior asks again.

"That's better but a little too tight.  Loosen it up a bit" I text him back.

I think my peeps started to get a little frustrated with me around the 10th attempt at getting it just right because Junior finally sent me THIS photo......

"Are you sure you don't want it like THIS?????!!!!!"

I guess that's what I get for trying to design things via Blackberry messenger.

Now, if you live close to one of my favorite Big Box stores in BC or Alberta, make sure you hurry down to get your orchids this week.  We brought a whole lot of them in.......
and they are SELLING OUT FAST!


Saturday, March 5, 2011

Steve Whysall at the BC Home and Garden Show

The weather may not be that Spring-ish here in Vancouver, BC but there is nothing like a trip to the BC Home and Garden Show to make you feel like it's time to get outside and start gardening.  Even better, a seminar on gardening basics from Steve Whysall is by far the most inspiring for an avid greenhouse gal like myself.  Just because we have a greenhouse bursting at the seams, full of hanging baskets and bedding plants, that doesn't mean we don't need a little taste of Steve's sunshine to get us jump started with a wee taste of "Primavera" pixie dust!

Judging by the crowd that turned out to hear Steve's chat last night......I think we're all in the mood to pick up a spade and shovel as soon as the weather permits.

I was very unfortunate to arrive at the stage 30 minutes prior to the "Garden Basics" chat to find that there was not a SINGLE empty chair left.  However, I did manage to find a great spot to STAND which was directly beside the wine kiosk.  How FORTUNATE is THAT?!

I paid my 8 bucks for a glass of Merlot and waited with all the excited gardeners hoping to catch a bit of that frenzied garden fever.

The 45 minute presentation was FULL of photos from famous gardens around the world and wonderful tips on how to create a masterpiece in your own back yard.  I don't want to give away all his secrets because he says it so much better himself.  You have 1 more chance to hear Steve in person today so make sure you plan to catch him at the brand new Convention Center down town.

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 Would you just LOOK at the SIZE of this crowd?!  You could FEEL the electricity from all of these garden lovers who just can't wait for winter to be over!

Honestly, I am so excited about this coming season.  All of us at Darvonda have been working super hard as usual to bring you the VERY BEST in container gardens from all over the world.  We are just freshly back from a trip to China last week where we did our final inspections of the remaining items which will be loaded on a cargo ship in a few days.  

So, just to help you get those garden endorphins flowing, here is a sneak peak at what will be coming soon to my favorite Big Box store near you.......