The Journey to Casa Madera – The garden is a mess!

August 22, 2012  – It is the middle of rainy season here at Casa Madera Bed & Breakfast in Nuevo Vallarta.  It is sunny, hot and humid.  It is a typical summer’s day in the Bay of Banderas.

We may get rain tonight, we may not.  You really never know.  The potential is always there but it does not always arrive.

We like the rain.  It cools the air and makes everything green.  The plants grow with the rain, and I mean grow.  Some plants will put on a foot in a day or two just because of the water and the sun.  I have never seen plants grow like this, it is incredible.

The front of house before Ramon got here today

This does cause a bit of an issue for us as we have some green space.  At this time of year it is really green space.  Grass grows where none has been planted.  7 foot weeds shoot up while you are hanging laundry.  We cannot keep up with it.  So today we hired a gardener.

Yes, a gardener.  He came over yesterday to have a look and see what needed to be done.  Personally I think he wanted to cry but he said he would be here today at 8:00 AM.

At 8:00 AM Ramon was at the gate.  By 8:30 the hedge had been trimmed and plants that were growing in it were gone.  He cut, trimmed and cleaned until 2:00 PM.  The garden area looks amazing.  For the first time since we planted the pineapples a year ago we were able to see that they were actually growing.

Today after Ramon left

On Saturday he is coming to fertilize and apply weed killer to the areas where we would like to have grass.  Now I know what you are saying out there.  “Kevin, why are you not doing this yourself?” Quite frankly, I don’t have the time nor the energy to spend for the amount of time required to keep this garden looking good.

The front garden

The other problem is we have no idea as to what some of this stuff is that grows in our yard or how to care for it.  Is this a full sun plant, partial sun or shade?  Will it bear fruit?  What bug likes to eat it?  What is that black stuff growing on the palm tree?

The questions go on and on.  We try to ask at the Vivero’s (plant centers) but in a lot of cases we have not asked correctly or we have misunderstood the answers.  We are hopeful that this will clear all of this up for us.

A Gardener, I never thought we would have a gardener.


The Journey to Casa Madera – Watching the Olympics!

August 5, 2012 – The skies are greying and the distant sound of thunder reminds us it is still rainy season here at Casa Madera Bed & Breakfast in Nuevo Vallarta.  Last night we had a doozy of a storm.  3 or 4 inches of rain and spectacular lightning.  It takes your breath away watching it and now it looks like we are going get to enjoy it again.

Today we decided to do something different with the blog and Heather has taken the time to put her thoughts into cyberspace.  We hope you enjoy it!

Watching the Olympics – Heather Wood

To say that we have felt removed from “real life” since we moved to Mexico would be an understatement.  We do listen to the daily news on CKUA radio, which gives us the highlights, and honestly that is about all I have ever really been interested in.  I have made it a habit since I began living on my own to not watch the evening news.   Call me silly, but I always felt it emphasized the negative, rather than the positive aspects of the world in which we live.  However, even without my daily dose of  the evening news, I was still able to have an idea of what was going on in the world, thanks to everyday conversations I would have with friends, co-workers and family.

Now, by our choice, we live in a different country whose first language is Spanish, not English.  We can watch the evening news, if we choose, and we can choose to buy several newspapers, in Spanish, at any street corner with a traffic light.  That does not mean that we will be able to understand everything spoken or printed.  Even though our language skills have improved 200% since moving here, we still have a long way to go.  Fully understanding a newspaper article or Television broadcast is still far into our future, I am afraid.

Which is why I was so surprised when my friend who lives in the UK started commenting about the Olympics in her Facebook posts.  I used to take major news events like this for granted.  Things like this were something everyone was talking about on every corner, in every newscast, and it was written somewhere in every newspaper for months leading up to the big event.

Perhaps it is the same way here.  I really don’t know, for reasons already stated.  🙂

I can tell you that we are watching the Olympics daily and that I am having a difficult time picking a country to cheer for.  I am torn.  Of course, I will always cheer for Canada, my homeland and where my heart lies.  But, I have a soft spot for Mexico as well.     I am and always will be, a proud Canadian. I  also remember that  Mexico accepted me and my husband when we decided to experience life away from the 9 – 5.  With that acceptance, comes  a certain pride in my adopted country and its achievements.

I am loving watching the  Olympics and consider myself very lucky that Mexico and Canada will not battle it out for the medal in  all events.