About Me

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South Carolina, United States
Vetsy is my nickname that my family have fondly called me since my childhood. My blog reflects my personal views about the world around me. My topics may be anything that interest me but the majority of it is about my favorite past times...nature and gardening. Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment or becoming a follower.

Saturday, May 18, 2013


Photo credit: Stone Face Creations

I was browsing the internet last year looking for garden inspiration and came across a photo of these fabulous garden stone planters .   Wowed by them, I had to find out where to get one, and if I couldn't find one how could I replicate one?   I posted that question on a site I joined last year called hometalk.com it's a website where home owners, crafters, designers and others share DIY projects. I got quite a few helpful responses.

A home improvement guy suggested  a MAKE YOUR OWN STONE FACE KIT. 
 I liked the faces but, didn’t care for the kit.  From the other contributors I learned that I could purchase these fabulous planters online and locally in my area…However, these beauties are currently, out my budget…“Sigh” what was I to do, I couldn’t get them out of my mind!

To my delight!... Another blogger came to  the rescue!.... Jessica Cramer of Designer Sweet Spot.com  had done a similar post on this subject matter and created her own unique garden stone head planter using a foam head … Thanks to her, I now have one too!  

Miss Betty Bling,  Meet Miss April Rose........

Photo Credit: Miss Jessica Cramer of Designers Sweet Spot
Photo Credit: Vetsy of Vetsy's View



For instructions on how to create your own Miss Betty Bling

For instructions on how to create your own.. Miss April Rose,  read the following pages below: 

Supplies:  Paint brush for applying  the Megikote foam primer, Rustoleum  American Accent Spray,  Krylon Crystal Clear Satin Spray, floral foam knife or any cutting tool that you can use safely to hollow the head.   I swopped out the

 ( Krylon Make it Stone Metallic spray)  that Jessica used for the Rustoleum American Accent Stone Spray…because I wanted my foam planter to have more texture. 


The first Step: is to apply the Megikote Primer,  than let it dry...One can speed up the time by placing the head next to a fan.... The instructions on the bottle warns Not to use a blow dryer!

 The fan method worked great.... It was dry in less than 30 minutes or so.....I than sprayed it with the Rustoleum American Accent Stone spray.... Ooops!  I stood to close to her head when I sprayed her and got bumpy results....

Below:  I had to stand at least 2 feet or more to get the right results... I didn't follow directions.. I sprayed her a second time and got better results...When she was dry I applied the  KRYLON CRYSTAL CLEARSATIN SPRAY

NOTE:  leave the top of her head unpainted, Jessica drew a 6'' circle on top with a compass, you can also use a 6'' flower pot.. see photo below.. this is done to make it  easier to remove and excavate  later.

Below: I used a marker and a   6.3'' flower pot to trace and mark the cavity.

I could not find a floral foam knife any where! None of my craft stores had any..So I resorted to using a   Wall Board Saw..... BAD IDEA!  This tools works better on what it's designed for... A Wall!

            I  found a couple of blades and alternated between the two...They worked a lot better..

I kept scraping my way through using straight and circular motions.... TAKE YOUR TIME, MOVE SLOWLY AND CAREFULLY WITH THIS STEP!!  to avoid injuries!

Since the neck of the head already has a hole in it.... all i needed to do was to poke the foam out from the inside...

Below: I decided to use a potato bag in place of a flower pot  because I could not get a pot to sit in the head correctly... I could have chosen to place dirt and plants inside of the cavity.... but I wanted a quicker option to swop a plant out if I wanted to change it...

And... Wah-la!   Miss April Rose is complete.... Almost.. 

I'm indecisive about my plant choice. I love the color and form of  Purslane...
 ( It's related to the Moss Rose)  but read that I'll have to watch out for the seeds during the end of the summer or they'll spread like weeds... I can maintain it by cutting them back or taking care to remove the seeds.... But for now they adorn her head.... 

I just Love her! Thank you Miss Cramer and thank you visitors for stopping by and leaving a comment. If you should decide to make these garden planters,  please stop by and link your project, I would love to see what You.... have created!    Thanks!

  Photo: of Miss April Rose by Vetsy of Vetsy's View




Thursday, May 2, 2013

One of my favorite pastimes


Above:   This bold little Warbler sat long enough for me to snap this photo right on my balcony

One of my favorite past times is bird watching... When I lived in Michigan I attracted several birds to my feeders...The Red Cardinal, Gold and Purple finches, Blue Jays, Chickadee's and even the common House sparrow  although... A pain in the butt! was a source of entertainment.

House Sparrows and a male Red Cardinal

 My  Weigela shrub attracted the same nesting cardinal pair three or more years in a row.. I would watch and worry about their babies as they flew from their nest,  and  now open to prey like our neighboring cats...

 later on..... I learned to hand feed Chicadee's with my nieces,  if you missed that blog click here for the link  http://vetsysview.blogspot.com/2010/08/birds-and-butterfly.html

I enjoyed  feeding the birds but in 2011 I ran out of steam...feeding birds became an expensive endeavor and a  big chore! The cheaper the seed the bigger the mess!  I later purchased  bird seed mixes that included  the kernels only... It cut down on the mess!..... but cost a lot more!

Above: A photo I took in 2011... Sunflower seed hulls carpet the grass below my bird feeder.. The sparrows would consume a pound of birdseed in a single day!   UUUGGG!
You can see why I thought that feeding birds was more trouble than it's worth.... When I move south the only specie I would bother to attract is the hummingbird.... It cost less and no seeds are involved... ''sigh"

But one morning here in my new state of South Carolina.. I opened  my balcony door and heard a familiar sound... "Chik a.dee..dee..dee..dee...

Above: Instead of throwing out my Christmas tree, I  decided to use it as a perch for the birds.. This little Chicka-dee fell in love with it..

A big smile came to my face as I sat and listened .. dare I go back on my word?  I dared myself and did. Off I went to the store to purchase birdseed,  I can't just sit and listen to the chirps and the songs of birds, I have to see them as well.......

Above:  Plants and bird feeders share space on my small balcony...So far I have attracted  more than 10 species of bird, some are regular visitors while others are just passing through.. 

 The Carolina Wren feeds upside down on a bird seed bell..

Above: A male cardinal spies out the bird feeders

Above : A Downy Woodpecker which is the smallest and I think, is the curtest of all the other species of woodpeckers

Above:  A  pair of Purple finches eat from a plate.......

  A Gold finch...

I believe this large robin like bird is a Wood thrush but I'm not certain... the photo isn't very clear because I'm trying to take pictures through my balcony door..

Below: A Cat bird feeds from a feeder I made from a flower pot.....

I have just learned that like the Mockingbird.. the Cat bird too, can mimic many other species of bird... I was fascinated by a Youtube video uploaded by Greg Budney..and decided to share it on my post...
Credits: Greg Budney and the Lab of Ornithology

Uploaded on May 6, 2010   
A remarkable Gray Catbird mimics dozens of bird species (and a frog too!) in northern California. Listen as Greg Budney, audio curator at the Macaulay Library, dissects the recording and notes each snippet of mimicked song.

Thank you for stopping by.... Do you have a favorite bird?