The kids showed up for child care today and it almost made the weekend seem like a dream. Last Friday at 6:30 AM I took off for Chicago, arriving there at 2 PM. Why would anyone fly over 2000 miles just for the weekend? I wanted to meet other garden bloggers, whom I have only known through their written words. The chance to get to meet them was too great a temptation to resist, so for only about the 5th time in 26 years I closed the child care Friday to give myself what was most definitely a whirlwind weekend! I arrived too late for the beginning events but visited 5 different gardens ranging from the private garden of television chef Rick Bayless to the beautiful Lurie Garden in Millennium Park to Ginko Organic Gardens, a community production garden that serves Uptown area homeless and low-income people. We also were welcomed by Carolyn Gail of Sweet Home and Garden Chicago and I have been coveting the idea of her rain chain ever since! The Garfield Park Conservatory was a wonderful maze of rooms including the Fern Room, Palm House, Desert House and more. Cindy of My Corner Of Katy and I enjoyed seeing "greenhouse" plants that we grow outside...a nice example of the different climates in which we all garden.
But enough of the garden talk! I love a good garden visit as much as the next plantaholic but my main interest was to visit gardeners. I know I will read many of my favorite blogs with a changed ear now that I've heard the literal voices of their writers. I've long enjoyed hearing authors of my favorite books speak for that same reason...you get to know the cadence and tone of their voice and how you approach their work changes. I'm excited to see how this works out in the coming days...and I'm excited to add new blogs to my Google Reader. The garden blogging world is expanding so much that it's difficult to keep up. But there are several blogs that will be going on the reader because I so enjoyed meeting their authors this weekend...authors whose literal voices I now know. I only wish it had been possible to meet more of the bloggers but I suppose then I'd never catch up on my reading!
Here I am with some of the bloggers whose voices I now know...Elizabeth of Gardening While Intoxicated and Garden Rant, Carol of May Dreams Gardens and Cindy of My Corner Of Katy.
The top photo is one of an orchid in the Orchid Room that Rose of Ramble On Rose wanted to photograph just as her battery went dead...maybe this will suffice.