Today’s is a two-part post. First, about Annmarie Gardens here in Calvert County, Maryland. The second is more random facts about me and a request–PRETTY PLEASE!

Yesterday was Friday and not so terribly busy, so I took the afternoon off from work to take my son, Ben, out to lunch and then dragged him down to Annmarie Garden. We have lived here in Calvert County for about 10 years and in all that time I have never made it down to see the garden.

Annmarie Garden is a Smithsonian Institution affiliate and has a number of artworks on loan from the Hirshorn Museum & Sculpture Garden, D.C. There is a quarter-mile walking path through the woods that is dotted with these works of art. Naturally, because they are outdoors and subjected to the elements, many are bronze, other metal or stone. Most are abstract.


I have to admit that I was disappointed that there wasn’t more “garden.” It was really more of a park. The setting was quite lovely and I wholeheartedly approve of the concept of outdoor art. But everything did seem a bit brown and green. I could have used some swaths of color to add some drama.

Fortunately, there were some bits here and there that were a welcome surprise. Small parts of trees had been painted in clever tiny scenes.


More tree art surprises

I also enjoyed what looked like a children’s art project of plastic bottles that had been painted and speared onto rebar to make colorful totem poles.


Plastic bottle totem poles

The bottles were painted with little sayings. Most were inspirational, such as “Reach for the stars!” Maybe it was my mood, but my favorite was “Don’t Squat with Your Spurs On!” Good advice!


Don’t Squat With Your Spurs On!

Because Calvert County is still quite rural, there aren’t many things to do or places to take out-of-town guests. Although it’s still quite young (founded in 1999) and establishing its “collections,” I think that Annmarie Garden will be a nice addition to my touring spots for friends and family.

One more funny thing…

It was quite a hot day–over 90 degrees. I made the mistake of taking my handbag rather than leaving it in the car. It was getting quite heavy, so I enlisted my big, strong, 16-year-old son to carry it for a while. See his comment below. I laughed and laughed…


Ben: “Here I am in an art park. Carrying a purse.”

More Random Things

Finally, Ruthie over at Nature Knitter, tagged me for her Eight Random Facts meme. Seems as if I just did Seven Random Things. Aren’t y’all sick of me yet?

According to Ruthie, here’s how the meme works:

–Players start with eight random facts/habits about themselves. –People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules. –At the end of the blog, you need to choose eight people to tag and list their names. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them that they’re tagged and to read your blog. (Participation is optional and it’s OK if you defer.)

Here goes. I will try to not be too long-winded.

1) I walk for exercise since, as I explained in Robin’s Immutable Laws of Gardening, it is physically impossible to stay in shape or lose weight by gardening. I generally aim for an hour, which is not quite four miles for me. In the winter, I actually go outside sometimes, but usually I go to the gym.

2) My favorite comfort food (which I define as easy to make, not designed for nutrition and extremely satisfying if you’re feeling like crap) is brown rice topped with steamed broccoli and smothered in hollandaise sauce. (Try it! You’ll like it!)

3) My first pet of my very own was a cat named Teddy. He was an awesome fellow I adopted from the SPCA in California. He had been hit by a car and was in bad shape. Fortunately, because I was very poor at the time, I was dating a veterinarian who patched him up.

After some coast-to-coast moves, Teddy started to have male-cat-acting-out-issues, if you know what I mean. We tried valium. We tried hormones. We tried everything. Mostly, he seemed to want out of the house. So finally, I relented.

He was run over by my mother-in-law about a month later. After I finished the first round of crying, I declared, “I need a DRINK!” At which my mother-in-law told me, sheepishly, that she drank the last of the wine.

Yes, I still speak to my mother-in-law. But NOT about Teddy. (She caught a RAFT of grief from everyone. No need for me to add to it. I really LIKE my mother-in-law!)

4) My first real job, at age 17, was at Roy Rogers, where I had to say “Howdy Partner” and “Happy Trails!” Thankfully, I have come a long way since then.

5) In my second job after college, I sometimes had to dress in a dog suit and dance around…Long story about that one. Thankfully, I have come a long way since then too.

6) I am allergic to dogs, pollen, dust and mold. That’s God’s little joke on Robin, the dog and nature lover. I have to get allergy shots, which have improved my quality of life tremendously.

7) I wear a size 9.5 shoe. I used to wear an 8.5 but then I had a baby about 16 years ago and nothing was the same after that.

8) I get mail every single day from Las Vegas casinos offering free rooms and play. I’m not really a big gambler, but there was that one memorable weekend in Vegas where I won $2,000. I figure they’re just trying to get it back.

Tha..tha…that’s all folks!

Who wants to volunteer to be tagged? Anyone?

I KNOW!!!! Instead of me tagging people, why don’t YOU post random facts about yourself–along with your website–here!!! So tell me a random fact (or eight) about you!

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  • Trudy says:

    Your son is so funny with the pocketbook!! You would never catch mine carrying my bag.

    About me: I was a four-time roller skating champion in high school and college. Today? I still wow the boys when we have roller skating parties at the rink.


  • RuthieJ says:

    The AnnaMarie Garden was fun. I’ve never seen anything like it here in Zone 4!

    Ben is a good sport–that expression on his face is priceless.

    I just happen to have some leftover brown rice from supper tonight. Do you make your Hollandaise sauce from scratch or can I cheat and use one of those little packages? Sounds yummy!

  • Dirk says:

    My random fact. I was born with fused fingers and toes. My parents called me "Duckie" and still do. That explains a lot about me today, I think.

    Ben seems to be a good natured kid!


  • Ruthie – Ben is a very good sport! (Especially after he has had his feeding!) It’s hard to believe he’ll be heading off to college in a couple of years. Oh no! What will I do then!


  • Genie says:

    Robin, I can’t believe I never even heard of that garden, considering how long I lived in the D.C. area. When I get back for a visit, I’m going to have to check it out.

    Random fact about me: I’m commenting on your blog from an airport, and this is the third time in three trips that I have not actually departed at the scheduled time, either because of delays, cancellations or, in this case, a ticket snafu! Sigh…

  • Dolfan says:

    Is Ben ok. I can’t believe any teenage boy would allow his picture to be taken while holding a purse unless he was on heavy drugs.
    Your mother-in-law got a lot of grief for admitting to her daughter-in-law that she was the one who killed your cat and not some other person.

  • Hah! Ben doesn’t ALLOW me to take his picture! He’s just gotten so accustomed to my constantly snapping the camera that he’s resigned that he’ll get caught in the viewfinder from time to time.

    And, really, he does see the humor in this photo. Also, it may have been different if there were a lot of people (cute girls) around. It was very hot and the place was empty.

    –Robin (Bumblebee)

  • Okay, let me explain something to you. Brown rice does not qualify as comfort food. EVER. No matter what you put on it. I love your blog and I think you’re funny and wonderful, but I really cannot allow you to spread this kind of misinformation. Seriously. What is the world coming to? Next you’ll be saying that shredded wheat is a comfort food. Or brussel sprouts. Shudder. ~A 😉

  • I’m just kidding ya. Mostly. Great photos by the way and your son is very, very funny. That look! ~A 🙂