Wednesday, May 21, 2014

The Detective That's Been Following Me, New Flowers, and More Chocolate Cake

Did that title get your attention? Ha! I'll explain, but first I need to share this pic from Instagram...

You see, I have naturally curly hair, but lately I've been blow drying it straight and the other morning I actually took the time to straighten it AND curl it with the curling iron, so I thought I better document it on Instagram. ;) Here's the pic from IG...

Now, y'all just humor me for a minute and please excuse my excitement...Do y'all see where it shows the "likers" right under my pic? Now, do you see the name "alimiballard?" Y'all...he's an actor who plays "Detective Crawford" on CSI (my favorite show!! I literally have 43 episodes on my DVR just so I have plenty to choose from) I was grinning ear to ear when he "liked" my pic. :) And as if that wasn't enough...he's also following me on Instagram!!! His name is Alimi Ballard and some of you may remember him from "Numb3rs" or even "Sabrina The Teenage Witch." So, that's the "detective" that's been following me lately. ;) Sorry for the giddy-ness, but I have the tendency to revert back to my 16 year old self at times. Lol! You can always find me on Instagram at "texasdecor"

So...on to the new flowers... My snapdragons on the patio finally succumbed to the heat, so it was time to replace them. I really wanted to try some kalanchoes, but couldn't find any.

Then I came across these pretty purple ones at the garden center...

They're called Gomphrena and have the prettiest little purple blooms. I only bought one because I'd never had them before. I looked them up when I got home and my garden book says they're supposed to bloom (here in the Houston area) from May until October. It also said they can take a lot of heat and don't need too much water. 

I was still skeptical, so I asked my fellow Texan and blogging friend Stacey if she'd ever tried growing them. She said she buys a flat of them every year!! She said hers will bloom from about May until the first frost and she has them in full sun. Well, that's all I needed to hear. I high tailed it down to the garden center and bought three more right then. :) I get pretty excited when I find a flower that can take our brutal Texas heat. :)

I planned on pulling up this juniper on the left and putting the gomphrena in its place. The juniper never really recovered from our drought years ago, and keeps getting brown sections all over it. 

ten year old juniper

Below is a closer look at the brown spots.

Well, let me tell you...this juniper was not going anywhere! It's about 10 years old and very big. My hubby suggested we just cut off the brown spots and plant the gomphrena in front of it, so that's what we did. It actually worked out well, because now we'll still have the greenery of the juniper all winter long after the gomphrena dies down. 

Below is a pic after we pruned off all the dead parts... 

And here it is with the three new gomphrena flowers!

Here's a close up look at the blooms. This was taken with my iPhone and I didn't even use a filter or anything. The color is just that pretty!

While we're in the backyard, I thought I'd show you a few more pics...

This is one of the esperanza plants. It just started blooming with the pretty yellow flowers.

blooming esperanza

Here's a close up of the cluster of blooms. These will bloom all summer and into the Fall.

I can't believe I didn't even notice the vitex had started blooming! I've walked right past it several times lately and just noticed the purple blooms starting to show. :)

blooming vitex tree

I also planted some zinnias in place of the snapdragons on the patio...

zinnias on patio

pink zinnia

More zinnias in the window box.

window box flowers

There's still a few snaps hanging on in there too. :)

My begonias come back year after year. I think this one is about 7 or 8 years old.

green leaf begonias

Here's a closer look at the begonia. I have much better luck with the "green leaf" ones vs. the "copper leaf." The copper leaf ones don't seem to be able to take our heat (even in the shade)

I put this on Instagram the other morning. These are the gomphrena flowers sitting on the patio coffee table right before I planted them. The sun was just coming up and I thought it made for a pretty pic. :)

And just because I never show y'all yummy chocolate treats (ha ha) here's yet ANOTHER chocolate cake I made the other day. It's called the Hershey's "Perfectly Chocolate" Chocolate Cake. It's really fudgy and delicious and the icing is divine!! You can find a link to the recipe HERE

hershey's chocolate cake

Well, I guess that's enough excitement for one day. :) Y'all take care!



  1. Well look at you gorgeous and you are hiding behind the scenes! You need a picture on the side with the About Me. You are practically famous with that detective guy following you around.

    Glad you like the gomphrenas. They will grow quite a bit when it gets good and hot. Which coming oh so soon. :) Your yard looks amazing. I love that pic with the sunshine.

  2. Thanks for showing the cake - I got my chocolate fix without the calories.

    I am going hunting for gomphrenas this morning. I am working in the garden all day and they look like the perfect flower to add some color to one spot of the garden.

  3. Pretty picture of you! I can so relate to plant/heat problem! Down here in Florida, it is the same. My back patio faces the beating morning sun all morning & my front porch the brutal afternoon sun. Just this week I have lost 2 plants to the heat. We are in the link w 90's already :-\ Your yard looks amazing!

    I am still keeping your nephew in thought and prayer...Blessings!


    1. Thank you, sweet Sherri! Since you're in Florida, I'm sure you can relate to the heat problem. I have the exact set back patio gets all the morning sun, and my front porch gets the afternoon sun. I can't ever have pretty flowers on the front porch because it's too hot, plus all the heat coming off the brick of the house. Thank you so much for the prayers for Ben! You are so kind and I really appreciate it! :)

    2. You're so welcome :-) yes, same here, no pretty flowers on my front porch either. Have a wonderful evening!

  4. That is such a pretty picture of you. However, it's only part of you! You're such a tease. LOL! I don't know who that actor is, but I'll have to look him up now. Your new flowers are so pretty. We get those brown sections on our junipers sometimes too. Just best to cut them out like you did. Love the picture with the sun shining through your purple flowers.

  5. How exciting that a celebrity is following you....I would be giddy with excitement too! Your gomphrenas are so pretty.....I love the color of the blooms. I might have to see if we have them around here since it already getting hot here.

  6. Woah! Your in the big time Lisa, a celebrity 'stalking ' you?! Now that's really something. I LIKED that photo too, I think it's the first one I've seen with YOU in it! LOL! Love the changes you made in your pretty garden, wish we were neighbors so you can help me with mine - it's looking horrid now that springs almost done. Sigh,, I wish there was an app that can zap my weeds away! ;-)

  7. Well check you out hot mama!! You and your hair are GORGEOUS!! I'm also loving your accessories :)
    And that's too cool about a celebrity following you!!
    I also loved that oicture of your flowers with the sun in the pretty!!

  8. WOW! You are famous! I bet he is telling all his celebrity friends about you. LOL BTW, your hair looks gorgeous! And also do your gardens. Enjoy your day, Lisa.

  9. That is so cool to have a celebrity following you on Instagram. I really like the earrings and necklace in your photo. Do you remember where you purchased them? Thanks.

    1. Hi Kim! The necklace is just one of those bubble necklaces and I got it from Groopdealz. They have them on there all the time. The earrings came from Cato. If they don't have the necklace on Groopdealz, check or Zulily. They have them on there a lot too. I love those daily deal sites! Good luck! :)

    2. Hi Lisa! Thanks so much for letting me know.

    3. You're welcome, Kim! I also noticed that has mini bubble necklaces on their site today for $5.99. Amazon carries them too, just search "bubble necklace." Hope you have a good weekend!

  10. Lisa, what pretty flowers! Our Esperanza plants haven't come up yet. I'm hoping that the fluke December ice storm didn't harm them. We'll see! Loved seeing all of your beautiful flowers!


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