elaby: (LotR - Galadriel smiles)
Sunday I woke up with a sort of “nothing sounds fun to me today” feeling, until Rachel remembered that she wanted to go buy some plants for our offices, and I perked up immediately. She convinced me to leave the house without showering first (always a hard sell) and we ended up running ALL OVER THE WORLD and having many adventures.

First, we went to breakfast at the Wooden Spoon, a little local place that serves platter-sized pancakes, only takes cash, and always has a line out the door. Pancakes, waffles, and the restaurant’s signature grilled cinnamon roll were ruled out because of my decision not to eat eggs, and I instead had a large serving of home fries and their homemade toast. So delicious! We spent breakfast talking about Majora’s Mask and our current troubles at Snowhead Temple.

After breakfast, we stopped at Salmon Falls Stoneware, a local pottery studio that makes really amazing high-quality stuff. I won a gift certificate a few weeks ago at the movies (just by spinning a wheel!) for an oil lamp, and we decided to pick it up. The store and studio are mingled: the front shop has the “best” pottery stacked on shelf after shelf, and a door leads to a labyrinth of rooms of less expensive “seconds” (perfectly sound but the designs are sometimes a little blurred) that merge with shelves of unglazed, drying pottery. It’s so much fun to wander through.

We chose an oil lamp (number 531) in “Mountain Berry” and got a bottle of lamp oil with the gift certificate. We also picked out a coffee mug (number 311) in Blue Green Vine and a beautiful little dish that’s not listed on their website. It’s about four inches across and has scalloped edges and a raised image of a teapot in the middle. It also has a beautiful crackled glaze of blue-green glass around the teapot. We’re going to use it as a tea bag/tea ball holder <3

Then we moved on to the main event! Wentworth Greenhouse :3 It was such a glorious soul-balm to be there among the plants, in the warm, moist air. It seemed like there was no one there when we arrived (it was probably around eleven by then and they were open since eight) but ten or fifteen minutes later, the place suddenly FILLED with people. The greenhouse is mostly a gardening supply store but it also has a large display area, teaches classes, and hosts (or used to host?) the local winter farmer’s market, so it’s a big place. The display area has some of the most lovely exhibits. My favorites are a huge urn overflowing with succulents, some vertical wall-gardens with moss and teeny blobby plants, and an entire bed made from live flowers complete with a leafy patchwork quilt and branches for a canopy. They also have finches <3

Rachel and I wandered among the houseplants for a while and I dithered over choices until we found someone to advise us. Since my office is climate-controlled and I sit right near a window, I had a lot of options. I had pretty much decided on one of the string-of-pearls plants (a succulent) when the guy who was helping us showed us over to the ferns.

FERNS. My heart delights in ferns. He said they were easy to care for, so I looked through them and one delicate, bushy beauty with tiny lobed leaves caught my eye. I picked her up and she was perfect. I felt the kind of love one usually feels toward a small furry animal. We explored a bit more (and I chose a string-of-pearls as well) and we found someone to help us pick out the right size pots. We told her we’d be keeping them in our offices, and when she saw my fern, she said, “Oh, maidenhair ferns are probably the hardest ferns to take care of... I’m not trying to be negative, but are you sure that’s the best choice?” I felt like somebody wanted to take my kitten away. Imagine, if you will, a kind gardener looking concerned and a little chibi Katie hugging a plant and screaming “MINE! MY BABY!”

In fact, what I said was that I wanted to try, so she told me all about how to take care of it. I think I have a good chance of keeping it alive from what she said about placement and watering. It’s so beautiful <3

The gardener repotted our plants for us (for free!) and gave us all sorts of encouraging advice about how to take care of them. It was wonderful. I was so, so elated when we left. We decided to deliver our plants to our offices right then so we wouldn’t have to mess around with them in the cold Monday morning. It was a really good idea – we helped each other carry our pots in, and after we dropped them off at my office, we went to Street for a late lunch (a nifty restaurant in Portsmouth that serves street food from all over the world). We shared a vegan bibimbap and some amazingly good curry fries :3


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March 2016



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