The Secret Garden

A cluster of tulips.  Is that what you call a group of tulips?  A cluster?

Finally, I've got a backyard!

We came into possession of a house the week before the new year, so it was cold and as you know--there wasn't much of winter 2012 in central Illinois.  When we got the house we knew that there was amazing potential in the backyard.  Potential is putting it lightly.    

The owners before the owner lived and loved the house for thirty years With the weather just absolutely stellar, the flowers are growing strong and not letting us down.  Here are some shots my girlfriend and I took this past week.  Some of these flowers I have no Idea what they're called.  

There is so much more this yard will show us, including a lilac tree and several bushes that I've never even heard of.  

The tulip, up close  

The colors inside really surprised me, there are also yellow and pink tulips. A young girl walked by the other day and told her friend "there are like a million of those."

I Said Blue Bells

This picture was taken my Meghan.  She caught these bluebells with the morning dew.  One thing to keep in mind, especially when it comes to the vegetable garden, a possible frost mid April.  Climatetologists and Farmers Almanac enthusiasts say there could be a final frost next month.

Obviously named

These bleeding hearts are amazing, especially with whatever macro-thingy my cell phone camera has.  I was really surprised by these having never had a garden, but wow, are these fun!  

Funny thing is?  I don't have a green thumb at all, but I'm learning! The backyard also has a modest vegetable garden so I'll be busy in the dirt this summer, which is exactly what getting the house was all about, right?

Amazingly the previous owners kept a very well documented garden guide.  I'll take one of these lazy summer days to toil over all the pronunciations and proper care.  Until then, I'm just going to sit back, take some pictures and smell the roses--because this secret garden also has a rose bush!

Surely this is just the beginning.  From what we've been able to gather from the previous owners and the neighbors, this backyard will not only delight us, it will also keep us busy.

Apparently the perennial plants have been arrayed in a way that keeps opening up different areas of the yard with different plants with the progression of the year.

I'll keep posting pics of the garden's secrets.  We're in for a trip into Bishop's secret garden.  Does it make me less of a man  that I'm posting about flowers?  

WQLZ Music Minute

March 28, 2012

Music News from the Rock Station, 92-7 WQLZ by Bishop

Soundgarden on a soundtrack

The first new song in 15 years from Soundgarden will be released on a motion picture soundtrack soon. “Live To Rise” is the title of the new song that will appear on the soundtrack for Marvel’s The Avengers. Expect to pick up the Soundgarden tune on soundtrack May 1st. Marvel’s The Avengers hits theaters May 4th.

Corgan on Jones

If you didn’t catch the hour-long chat that Smashing Pumpkins Billy Corgan had with liberty loving radio host Alex Jones, you’ve gotta check it out. Billy talks about his hard work coming from a lower-middle class upbringing to the successes he created for himself. He also talks about how new technology caught the music industry off guard to the point where they were for years in denial. Corgan then sheds light on his politics. Watch that very intriguing discussion online (embedded below). Corgan says his album Oceania should be coming out sometime this summer.

Explosive Billy Corgan Interview: The Awakening Has Begun

Next stage of treatment

Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi says he has completed chemotherapy and is no ready to start three weeks worth of radiotherapy. For anyone who has battled cancer or knows someone who has battled cancer you know how grueling these treatments can be. Iommi is battling lymphoma. What’s helping him get through it? Working on a new Black Sabbath album, that’s what! We’ll keep you posted on his progress.

Catch the Music Minute every weekday with the Free Beer and Hot Wings Show on 92-7 WQLZ, the Rock Station

Council Roundup Preview


March 27, 2012

Download a copy of the Springfield City Council Committee of the Whole Meeting online at the city's website.

Ordinances to be considered by the Committee of the Whole

The Committee of the Whole consists of all ten Alderman, the Clerk, and Corporation Council. During which, voting members decide what ordinances will be put on the Consent Agenda and the ones that will be put on the Debate Agenda for the following full city council meeting. Representatives from other offices are on hand to answer questions from the committee and that's surely going to happen tonight during the Committee of the Whole. Here's what you can expect from tonight's meeting.

Needed funds

With less than an month into the new fiscal year, the Springfield Fire Department is asking the city council for three-quarters of a million dollars. The request is above what was agreed upon in the fiscal year 2012's. FY 2013's budget began on March 1st a budget that was approved by the Springfield City Council. Now an ordinance requesting the unappropriated funds is in front of the Springfield city council committee of the whole to "clean up" the previous fiscal year.

A hiring lag from last fiscal year plus additional overtime expenses are reasons for the $725,000 request from the Fire Department. Fire Chief Ken Fustin may be asked to address the council for the needed funds. The office of Human Resources is also asking for unappropriated money, but only $11,000 to make up for a unplanned budget shortfall.

Workers' compensation claims

Also on tonight's agenda is roughly $245,000 dollars in worker's compensation payments and a request from the Office of Budget and Management for an additional $2 million because of and increase in medical claims in the last quarter of Fiscal Year 2012.

In another ordinance a year-long contract with Cannon Cochran Management Services is up for Committee Consideration. Cannon Cochran would serve as a third party administrator for worker's compensation programs. In December, not even four months ago, the City of Springfield signed on to a joint agreement with Sangamon County to have Triune Health Group manage worker's compensation services, a move expected to save the city and county millions of dollars.  Update: Placed on Debate Agenda because of unanswered questions.  Coroporation Council Cullen says Cannon Cochran Management Services performs different duties than Triune Health Group performs and is necessary.

Another contract on the agenda is a year-long agreement with two different law firms to perform legal services for worker's compensation claims. The two firms are Livingstone, Mueller, O'Brien & Davlin and Sorling, Northrup, Hanna, Cullen and Cochran. They'll evenly split $150,000. The later law firm is the former employer of the City of Springfield Corporation Council Mark Cullen, a law firm that was the centerpiece of a recent investigative article written by Illinois Times' Bruce Rushton.  Update: Cullen says that the public should not have any concern that his former lawfirm is incapable of doing the job.  He says the three attorneys from the two lawfirms are competent attorneys and performing their duties at a very competitive rate of $150 an hour.

The Council Roundup

Update: Without fail every week The Springfield City Council discovers something that will get listeners talking and this week it all starts with a phone call made during Tuesday's Ray Lytle Show. Don't miss all the action with The Council Roundup.

Be sure to catch The Council Roundup every Wednesday morning at 9 on The Ray Lytle Show. The Council Roundup with Greg Bishop and Ray Lytle--a comprehensive look at the Springfield City Council with complete (taken-out-of-context) quotes form Springfield's elected and appointed officials. The facts come from the tape and commentary from Lytle and Bishop. It's appointment listening and it's only on 970 WMAY, The News and Talk of Springfield.  

WQLZ Music Minute

March 27, 2012

Music News from the Rock Station, 92-7 WQLZ by Bishop

Global Warming Tour

Big plans for Aerosmith as the band gets ready for their “Global Warming Tour.” That’s the real name … “The Global Warming Tour.” The band will hit the road with their first show June 16th in Minneapolis. Front man Steven Tyler said that the old Aerosmith is back “with a new vengeance.” July 22nd, Aeroforce One will fly through Chicago at the United Center. There are several ticket packages available, including “Wheels Up: Steven Tyler and Joe Perry meet and greet” for $1,254.50. Opening for Aerosmith will be Illinois natives Cheap Trick.

Summerland Tour

In other tour news, there’s a strange combination taking to the road. It’s called the Summerland Tour and will feature Everclear, Sugar Ray, The Gin Blossoms, Lit, and Marcy Playground. Expect the tour to take off from Saratoga, California June 28th. The tour will snake its way to the Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Illinois, August 3th.

They're done

The band that brought you tunes like “Are You Gonna Be My Girl,” “Cold Hard Bitch” and “Look What You’ve Done” is no more. Jet has made the decision to pursue separate creative endeavors. They would like to thank the fans for making their story possible.

Catch the Music Minute every weekday with the Free Beer and Hot Wings Show on 92-7 WQLZ, the Rock Station

WQLZ Music Minute

March 26, 2012

Music News from the Rock Station, 92-7 WQLZ by Bishop

Samples online

It’s not the entire album, it’s just samples, but it’ll give you a good idea about the forthcoming Slash album Apocalyptic Love. You can stream samples of the album at Amazon. That also just happens to be the place that you can pre-order the album as well. Apocalyptic Love is due out May 22nd. Meanwhile, Slash kicked off his solo tour in Toronto on Friday and there’s a ton of video posted online.

Sold cheap, large volume

Oh, and speaking of Slash ... he most definitely appears on the Billboard Charts this week with Gun N’ Roses Greatest Hits album. That gem jumped up to No. 3 just behind a boy band and that mainstay album 21 from Adele. The GN’R Greatest Hits did beat out Bruce Springsteen’s album, though. But GN’R may have found a secret to boosting album sales. Offer it up for cheap. Google and Amazon’s MP3 store made the best of available for only 25 cents.

Loose ends

Other tid-bits ... Godsmack is said to be releasing a live album later this spring titled Live and Inspired. No word on the release date but it’s supposed to coincide with their upcoming tour with Staind beginning in mid-April. Oh, and speaking of tours, we could get an announcement this week from Aerosmith about a possible tour.

Stream it before you buy it

We told you last week about the new Ministry video for “99 Percenter.” Some of the comments have been a bit negative for that song, but the band has made the entire album Relapse available online for you to stream ‘til your hearts content and if you dig heavy and fast industrial riffs then you’ll dig most of the album. Relapse hits shelves tomorrow!

Catch the Music Minute every weekday with the Free Beer and Hot Wings Show on 92-7 WQLZ, the Rock Station

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