Joining New Clubs

I’m not a joiner by nature. For most of my life, I’ve avoided joining classes and clubs. And my standard line when offered a chance to join a group that might end up in recognition has always been, ‘thanks but no thanks.’ Retirement has changed all that.

Why? Maybe because I feel I have greater freedom outside Corporate America. No one will call me up to HR and ask what made me think this-or-that was an okay thing to do. Maybe because I feel this is my last chance to dive into something new and different. Maybe I’m having a late-life crisis. Who knows? Maybe all three.

Suddenly, inexplicably, I’m a joiner.

My most recent just-go-and-check-it-out occurred Friday, February 13. Auspicious date? Absolutely!

Hello African Violets!


I attended my first African Violet Club meeting and came away knowing a lot about WHAT makes a good African violet.

In brief, a blue ribbon plant has to be healthy, with intact, clean leaves that are also free of water spots. Leaves should grow in perfect symmetry, larger leaves beneath smaller, newer leaves, circular without gaps. The plant should not be leggy but also shouldn’t overhang the pot it inhabits.


It must have a minimum of 15 open blossoms. The blossoms have to grow from the middle of the plant. And, of course, the plant must match the official description in the African Violet Society of America Master List registry.


Am I discouraged about my African violet efforts? You bet I am. Maybe if I hang with the club long enough I’ll learn HOW to achieve blue ribbon status!

For those interested in learning more, check out the African Violet Society of America website.

Hello Liebster!

Recognition is always wonderful and I was happy to get a shout out in the form of a Liebster nomination from my friend at NovaScotiaRoots.


In case you don’t know about Liebster, here are the rules:

1. Put the Liebster Award logo on your Blog.
2. Thank and tag the blogger who nominated you.
3. Answer their questions and come up with 10 new ones for your nominees
4. Nominate 8 blogs (with less than 200 followers), let them know you’ve nominated them, and link them in your post.

So, first and foremost, a heart-felt thank you to NovaScotiaRoots. And now for the answers to the 10 questions:

1. Favorite flower: I’ve never met a flower I didn’t like but hands down, my favorite is hydrangea.

2. Favorite veggie: Romaine lettuce, with asparagus and kohlrabi as seasonal seconds.

3. Favorite garden picture: So many great garden photos. This one, showing the early days of Delicata squash, reminds me to look under the leaves to destroy an emerging problem.


4. Favorite season: Fall and harvest!

5. Biggest defeat in your garden: Squash bugs ruining my zucchini and Delicata crop.

6. Biggest challenge in your garden: Planting pumpkins and melons without squash bug infestation.

7. Your next big project: Getting cherry trees to grow in Kansas.

8. Your gardening partner you are most grateful for: My much loved husband, Jim, who in the end says, “Whatever you want!” And then jumps in to help.

9. Your favorite quote: Mark Twain: The secret to getting ahead is getting started.

10. What are you grateful for? My friends and family!

And now to pay it forward, a list of three Blogs to love. I will nominate the remaining five Blogs at a later date!

Tales of a Photographer in Kansas
Handmade, Homegrown, Beautiful Life
Growing Every Season

And for them, my ten questions:

1. Why did you start Blogging?
2. What keeps you motivated to Blog?
3. Favorite Blog post (you can link to it):
4. Favorite quote:
5. Biggest life challenge:
6. Most celebrated success?
7. Your next big project:
8. Your personal hero:
9. Your favorite food:
10. What are you most grateful for:


3 thoughts on “Joining New Clubs

  1. Love your answers! This is the last chance make it or break it year for squash in my garden. If it survives and fruits, awesome. If not – it is fired! Maybe I will have to try asparagus if the squashes get the boot!

      • I have sadly moved it every year to a new spot. I think it is either early high winds killing the babies or too much humidity at night causing mildew that is just too overpowering. I have gotten a few, but a 1 hour drive to a different micro-climate and people are selling giant squash at the end of their driveways for a buck or two…seems like a less frustrating road trip! I m really thinking about that asparagus now….thanks!

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