And we sprang from an article on Hackberry trees, which led to other invasive plants and how we feel about or cope with them. Of course, as always, one thing leads to another and on this day our conversation has drifted to losses.
I think losses are why I write about memories, I don't want to lose memories. And in writing about them, I find myself searching for the good ones as well as those that aren't so great.
It's the memories that make us who we are.
I remember plants, and those who taught me about them. If I didn't write about them, then all the knowledge that was given to me would be for naught, I think. Everything that Aunt Bett ever knew, or her ancestors before her would be gone, I think. So I write about them.
It's the same with our personal losses. It helps to write about our memories. It takes time to reach the point where we are able to do so, I think, and in time, Christi it will be easier for you.
I like what Charlie is doing, he is making memories with his photos, as he goes from day to day. That's important too. Wouldn't I have a treasure if we had had reliable cameras back in the 40's and 50's. I was lucky in that I have one of those visual memories, and can remember most of what I saw and did as I rambled around in the mountains. I can see a plant and it triggers a memory...some of them ridiculous, but that's what happens when your memories are that of a child.
Anyway, that's my take on loses. I also think it is good to look at a loss objectively to see if there is anything that can be gained from it.
Your gift of words brings the rest of us to the exact spot and experience when you are putting your memories down. To be an artist to go with it is just not fair. When I try to find just what my talents are...I come up blank most of the time. I have been a good nurturer in the past but for now that is all tied up with my memories of Aaron and I seem to be at a standstill. We have transferred all of our attention to our other grandchildren but they aren't as close geographically so it isn't as satisfying.
My love of design has gone from the inside of the house to the garden outside. Trying very hard to get out from under this cloud and pickup again.
I have always painted, Christi, all my life, so there is not a change there, but I had only ever written curriculum guides for school or technical manuals for teaching humanities until after I retired.
Actually, my hubby and I were going to travel, and were looking at RV's, but he was gone in April (lost my best friend the next April, as well...thinking about not having any more Aprils, you could join me)...and I didn't start creative writing until October of that year. Once I did start writing (06), I never looked back. If I didn't have the writing, I would have very little.
Your talent is in design, so you just completed the outside patio and water feature...that's a good start. You will find your way, Christi, you will for sure.
Second Sharon, Christi.
I'd say you are a good communicator, friendly and always with something interesting to say. I enjoy the contact with both you and Sharon.
Isn't it strange that we get on so well and we've never met each other in person? I know why I like the two of you. I'm prejudiced. I like nice people!
Well, Christi, the thing about both Charlie and me is that neither of us is judgmental. I think we learned that from teaching. And you won't find either of us telling anybody what to do. We might, if you over work yourself, or if you are doing something that would be hazardous, and we might tell you to be careful, but we don't tell you what mood you can be in. I sorta feel that way here too. I am the last person to offer advice, because who am I to give it. I feel that I need to walk a mile in somebody's feet before I have earned the slightest privilege of offering advice. Now if you ask me if you look good in yellow, I'd say YES. But that's about it.
I think at this age, we've earned the right to feel however we feel.
This is a weepy day, it commemorates a tragic time. There's no getting around it.
Christi has got me interested in butterflies and moths.
Noticed a hairy slightly yellowish caterpillar eating a leaf of Lavendelturm, a culver's root cultivar in front garden. The plant had long finished flowering and is due to be cut back. Next day found another on garage floor which must have been in a plant debris bag, awaiting pick up. Put that on the same plant.
Started trying to identify the caterpillar. Assume it's a moth (far more common than butterfly species). First got worried it was a culver's root borer (threatened in Michigan?), but I prefer culver's root: fortunately my caterpillar has very different habits. Will not cut the plant back now and will post pictures on Dave's for identification.
Don't think my camera is the best for close-up shoots. There's a giant in one of the pictures, looking down, as well as the caterpillar on the bottom of the leaf.
Charlie, I am strictly a novice and wouldn't have known what I have if Sheila had not visited and pointed it out. Sometimes those with furry looking "skin" will sting so be careful about touching it with your bare skin. There is a hummers and butterfly forum and they will be able to ID in a heartbeat. Those are really good, clear pictures. Post over there and let us know. I went to get more rue for my butterfly nursery and came back with at least 10 more cats and then more from my citrus. These two I know are giant swallowtail because of Sheila's visit. I would take pictures but it is raining for the third day, so far over 8 inches and still pouring down. WARNING: This is addictive. I will soon be making more little cages so I am a better surrogate mother. The sticky at the top of the butterfly thread has all the instructions and it is very easy.
Thanks for the advice, especially about possible stinging. Have posted the pictures as you said. I'm even more of a novice than you when it comes to caterpillars!
Went on line to try to check it out myself. Confusing! One thing I now know is that it's not a culver's root borer (heard of iris borers, but not these). Apparently this insect seriously damages culver's roots, but is in need of conservation action in at least Michigan. As said, culver's root is one of my very favorite perennials.
Am suspecting it might be a moth caterpillar because moths are so much more common than butterflies. Hope it's identified and, of course, will let you know.
Wow! You've got quite a swallowtail project going there, Christi.
I will be glad to know what it is myself. Looks a lot like what we call "web worms" or "army worms". They form huge webs in the trees, especially pecans, and can almost strip a tree in a matter of days. We battle them constantly. In going through the links on the sticky I found something that I tried to copy/paste and it wouldn't do it. A butterfly called a Question Mark (strange name, beautiful butterfly) uses the common hackberry as a host plant. I have never seen it but my neighbor has been saying she has seen a red butterfly. This picture is more red than anything. I would pull back my campaign against the hackberry if I could raise this in my yard.
The question mark butterfly is beautiful: orange with black markings (looked it up). Never heard of it till you mentioned it. Interesting tie in with our hackberry thread! Think I read the caterpillars eat elms and nettle family members as well. Hope you and I (and Sharon) don't need to relent on our ambivalence to hackberry seedlings. Still finding them in our garden here and have already pulled up a few dozen this year. Got several hundred last year.
Think I said I managed to cut two more branches off the neighbours' hackberry, while he wasn't looking. Truthfully, he said I could cut anything off any of his trees, but I don't like to make it tooo obvious! Actually, all I want to do is cut down his trees. Period. One of his hackberry branches got a bit of it's own back at me, grazing my head as it fell, but it was worth it. I do have a hard head, but I think I'll also use a hard hat when I fight the good fight, next time!
As all gardeners, I walk the garden with small clippers in hand. Never fail to cut a dozen or more hackberry seedlings. I do hope what my neighbor has seen is the question mark butterfly. That would be great!
Christi, it's a never ending battle against a whole gang of seedlings.
I like your image of walking the garden with small clippers in hand. Sounds a bit like shoot out at high noon.
My neighbour certainly doesn't deserve to see a question mark butterfly.
That has been my motto for more years than I care to remember. From my first grandchild, Aaron, I would always say "one thing". That was code to tell me just one thing new he had learned that day. Didn't have to be something fantastic, just something he didn't know when he got out of bed that morning. Dear God, I miss that boy.
I care very much for you both, strange as it is with such great distance between us. But sometimes we are brought together for reasons we don't recognize. And for whatever reasons, it's good that we can share things that touch us deeply with the ease we all obviously feel.
Gardening does that for me, too. I must have worn my garden out working on it the spring and summer after I lost my husband, and even last year I was out there from daylight till well past dark. But this year that obsession eased somewhat, and I notice I don't spend as much time with it. And I have developed newer interests, other obsessions. Time does that. It isn't that I don't care about my garden any more, it's just that I don't have the need to tear those weeds to shreds. Nor do I have the need to caress each bloom as it opens. And I don't miss Bob any less, but I can handle it better.
So you won't ever miss Aaron any less, but you will handle it better, Christi. And with more ease. I promise.
Now I have another story segment to write. I am loving reading about the butterflies, maybe I'll take more time to observe and to learn about mine. I have been watching the cats of swallowtails on my fennel. Most years I only grow fennel for them, and rarely cook with it unless I am baking or broiling fish. I just leave it alone for the swallowtails. But I have never tried to cultivate them. Maybe I will. Another obsession.
But not tonight. Tonight I have to find enough words to cover a page or two.
You all have a good evening, and tomorrow I'll tell you of my newest venture. I refuse to get old...there are too many things out there that I would much rather do.
Hear you're getting lot of rain, Christi. Hope no flooding.
Too little, followed by too much. Not the most useful situation.
Not gardening for a few days, because of shin;
seems to be getting better, but checked with doctor today.
Going to cottage for a few days, later in the week (nominally to do some of the closing for the season). Will get some pictures; the maples are beginning to turn colour down here. How much of the orange and red in the leaves comes out depends on the weather.
Can't find those caterpillar's, Christi. Don't know if they're now chrysalises or whether somebody ate them. Going to keep looking. No doubt you're still working with the swallowtails.
Sharran, Sharon. Following you all over the net and you are one busy lady. All of it is good news and I am happy for you. Sounds as though you have come to a crossroads and the higher road is calling you. Such a talented and sophisticated lady.
Charlie, if you go to Parking Lot forum, Sharon has developed a story writing thread called "Two Sisters". It is a very unusual concept and I thoroughly enjoy it. Didn't find it until a couple of days ago. There are 5 ladies that are taking turns writing chapters in this novel. Very interesting to see how they have all come together so cohesively. Don't know how Sharon selected the writers but it is great fun.
We are no up to 14 1/4 inches of rain since Thursday night. Flooding all around the DFW Metroplex and a lot of the Texas Hill Country. We always seem to have all or nothing.
Amazed at your energy level, Sharon.
Don't know how you can keep up with everything.
Off to a Town Council meeting tomorrow night. The Mayor, who has done a lot for Aurora, including working closely with David on the development of an arboretum and preserving natural areas, is having a lot of problems with a Council member, who herself was a former Mayor. Even though the large majority of Council are with our Mayor, the former Mayor has caused continual trouble and disruption, both as a 'blocker' at Council meetings and with what she's said on her personal blog. Have often watched Council meetings on local TV, but this time going with David to show our personal support for Phyllis.
I did my five years pentence as HOA president...actually, formed the association. Oh my goodness, what a time that was. City hall meetings all the time. If someone needed a dog catcher they called me instead of calling themselves. I found out more about "my" 140 rooftops than I wanted to know. Finally forced it onto a young man and he just let it die altogether. Small town politics are just as bad as national. Maybe worse because you know everyone personally. Good luck.
Very interesting, Christi. Part of your personal history.
My father, a grandfather and an uncle where borough politicans in London.
Maybe I was young and naive, but local politics seemed civilized at that time.
Like you, I got a taste of it, in my case on the Board of a Condominium Corporation in Toronto. It actually got quite nasty on occasions. It's bad enough when the other side starts threatening people, but when your side does the same, it gets quite difficult to handle.
At this stage, I agree with what you imply about politicians generally. Think we recently have said it's the voters fault for choosing them. But at higher levels, anyone who wants to run for political office needs lots of money and that causes huge problems.
Think we'd better watch what we say about politics, or we could get exiled from DG!
You are right, my friends, I am meeting myself coming and going.
The story threads started last winter, and I think Two Sisters is maybe the 5th. They are fun to write, but sometimes I run out of energy and have to really dig deep to pull something out. Anyway they are fun, and there are some excellent writers. They just volunteer, Christi, I don't make the selection. You might want to join us next time. You are a good writer too. The fun is in not knowing what anybody else is going to write. I had my mind on the explosion at the marina yesterday, so it was difficult to come up with anything worth reading. And too, you need to remember I don't have much of a life except that of my own making...
Charlie...I worry about your shin, I hope the doctor gave you some good advice or good medicine for it.
Wish I had some of your rain, Christi, we need it badly. I can tell you are doing better, and I am glad to see my friend resurfacing.
Worked myself into a tizzy today, and now must get some sleep.
Tomorrow is another day, hope it is beautiful for you both.
Sharon, not knowing what anyone else is about to write sounds very egalatarian. Think to be called gardening, an effort must be addressed to controlling or trying to control (nature). The type of writing you're doing sounds like a refreshing break. Christi may well be good at it, but it sounds too relaxing to me. Know it sounds odd, but the relaxing mood music Carol sometimes plays drives me straight up the wall.
Thanks. Shin looks like it's turned a corner in the direction of shaping up!
Am trying to be a bit more efficient though and avoid gardening as it gets dark.
Going to cottage tomorrow. Am going to look for artistic? camera shots, though my favorite will always be colour. We talk about the "hot colours of summer", but red, orange and yellow are also the (maple) colours of fall.
Charlie, have a wonderful time at the cottage. Sounds as if it will be the last time for this summer, so enjoy it, even if you are working to close it for the winter.
I built a tree today. Used old bamboo stalks, three of them, and put them in Quikcrete in a pot. Now I am stringing lights all over the bare branches...fun stuff, for a display at the store that I am helping a friend get ready to open.
Took me all day to get the thing built, and I am ready to crash.
You all have a good tomorrow, I know Christi will be heading out early, and so Charlie..you be very very safe. No gardening after dark, OK?
Sharon, sounds like you built an attractive and also well-behaved (= no seeding) tree.
Back from the meeting, Christi. You were right. Actually, I really fitted in. Got interviewed by a local cable station. The question I was asked kind of got me rather animated. Still, think (hope?) I did retain enough cool to make a reasoned response. Wouldn't want to hurt the people I support.
There'll be no after dark cutting off branches on a slope to clear the view either, Sharon. I've learned my lesson!
Goodness, I am neither a night owl nor an early mockingbird. Will be leaving in a jiff to take my daughter for the some tests where she will be put under for a short time. Kind of thing where you have to have a driver. Of course, no matter that she is 46, her mother is always near.
Careful on your journey, Charlie.
Sharon, what with moving furniture and then the book case and all the moving at the shop, there is no wonder you have strained your back. Take it from one who knows...slow down. You can injure you back very quickly and cause long term damage.
We don't need anymore back surgeries in the family.
One of my favorite jobs is trimming seedlings and the like to keep views down to the lake open. Unfortunately had to keep off the slopes this year.
Just heard that the Township has brought in regulations to control removing trees, as seen from the lake. Seems if you let seedlings get too large, you may have trouble being able to remove them later.
Also heard, you now even need a provincial license to put sand on the shore (beach: for children). Likely, the major real reason is raise money from dispensing licenses. Next they'll be selling pardons like the Medieval Church!
MIL (91) has two acres of water front property with a house 3000 ft. She is so selfish that her rules to join her for even 2 hours turn everyone off so we don't go. DH went today to mow the yard as she has run off all the available yard crews. Sad but she is the same unhappy person I met in 1960...just older. Too bad we can't enjoy the place like you do, Charlie. It looks so peaceful.
Christi, ditto what Sharon said. MIL sounds a pain (as you say mostly to herself). Wasn't always plane sailing dealing with my MIL and cottage, but fortunately for us, MIL did have a very likeable side.
Needless to say, Christi, I'm really learning a lot of internet lingo from you!
Great to see videos and all those pictures from KY Roundup, Sharon. It feels rather like being there. Lot of fun and good company. Love those hats and
pictures of all, especially of you. Think you're a prime mover. Must admit the camping video reminded me why I like reasonablly nice hotels!
Sharon, you are what we call "cute as a bug". That is intended as a very high compliment.
Not only are you talented in multiple areas but pretty as well with such class. sigh...as the other saying goes, "I am showing my age".
Charlie, when I first joined DG I had no idea what most people were talking about. Abreviations all over the place and I didn't know how to decipher any of them.
DGD..dear grand daughter
ROFL...rolling on floor laughing
There are probably many more but I can't think of them this early in the morning. Because of the lack of inflection people do a lot of things to try to indicate the emotion they intend. Oh, just had to teach Mike (DH) not to type in all caps as that is the same as shouting and very impolite.
With you and Sharon and many, many others it is easy to hear the happy lilt in your voice even on a black and white venue.
I'm guessing that most of this stems from texting on the cell phone, which I do not do and not interested in learning. I love the sound of the human voice. Actually, as a rule I love all human contact. When I am ill, mentally or physically, I totally withdraw and don't want anyone around me. While I have been very ill since we lost Aaron, I am slowly joining my beloved friends once again. Please know that Sharon and Charlie deserve much credit for my change.
It has taken awhile to adjust but Mike retired 3 years ago Oct. 1st. At first we both continued in the stress mode and worked here like there was no tomorrow. Little by little we have shifted gears. He has only had a PC since mid-August and is learning. I consider that a big improvement and stimulates both of us and I am teaching and he is learning.
Keeps our minds going and our bodies rested. It has been raining here for almost 2 weeks. As of now it has gone to 17 1/2 inches and is still raining. Had two days respite and I nearly killed myself trying to catch up the garden. Yesterday he drove 75 miles to his mother's and mowed her two acre yard.
Christi, 75 miles and back and 43 threads, etc., you certainly do stay busy!
Also, Sharon, with all your interests.
Enjoy working (as in retirement) myself, but not good at concentrating on many things at the same time.
Christi, may be showing my age myself, but it's feeling it that's the problem.
May be a bit difficult to ROFL. But guess you don't actually have to do it! Thanks for the list of internet abbreviations. Interesting about caps.
Nice collages ,Ge. Reminds me of June/July. As Sharon says, now's the start of fall. Where's the time gone? Nice paintings. One day I intend to join the two of you in painting. Love Japanese irises myself too. Find the Siberian ones are more vigorous, but tend to take up too much room in a perennial bed through the growing season.
Christi, those caterpillars have certainly disappeared. Was one good suggestion on the identification thread. Am sure there's a lot less info about moth caterpillars than butterfly ones.
Am totally confused by a phlox in our garden. Almost certain it is White Admiral, but after about ten years, it has suddenly turned a light pink this year (maybe the 'dirty magenta' of the wild form). The possible explanations I've just read don't fit. Going to read some more. Am very familiar with human genetics and plasticity during growth, but ignorant of plants. They really are much more confusing than humans. What the plants breeders do, or think they do, makes it even more confusing.
Find white wood aster a very useful plant.
(Just got some pink wood aster en route to cottage.)
Upper right: Frikart's aster (Also very useful plant:
this is Wünder von Stäffa). (Can't see any difference from Mönch, except shorter). Love the lavender blue and long bloom time.
Have good seasonal growing conditions here and spend too much time at it!
Must say I'm not unhappy about November coming and an end to gardening
for the year. Love it, but need a break.
Big problem with winter here is ice. I like shovelling snow. It has some aspects of gardening, but there's none of the temperamentalism and lack of self-discipline of plants. Big problem with ice is the slipperiness. Very easy to fall and mobility is our main reason for going to Florida for a month in winter.
Is still a fair bit of garden work for October and earlier November, cutting stuff back, taking up stakes, cleaning up, weeding, dividing perennials and planting spring bulbs. The voles/mice really like crocuses and I have to replace many each year. In the past have had to also plant numbers of fall mums in September, but now don't need many as have built up the number of particularly asters in the three important gardens.
Saw on the news the flooding in Georgia and states around. Saw there was flooding in Kentucky. Hope Sharon not affected.
I don't believe Sharon is in danger of the floods. She has been burning the candle at both ends and then from the middle lately. Benz Convertible has been keeping her busy too.
She is helping to do the displays in a re-sale shop for a friend and she is so good everything is flying off the manikins and they are yet to open. Just drop-bys. If you go to Parking Lot forum and the thread Blue Hats, ummmm Blue something, you will find a group of ladies (moi included) telling their secrets. hahahaha. Sharon is our leader.
DG is very large. I don't know how many forums, 200 maybe, with 200 threads running at any given time in each thread. I am currently watching 41 forums with very different interests. While Sharon and I are hard to beat, you might visit some others, lurking for awhile, and then jumping in. Over 750,000 members as of last Monday. Only 10% are paying members but that is great number to meet.
I mess around the tropicals a lot. I have a lot of tropicals in my yard even though I am smack dab in the middle of Texas. Florida's forum is very chatty and I have a lot of friends there.
This is a great place to be. With the things I have been through this last year, couldn't have made it without my DG friends. Many of whom I have met. By sometime in 2010, I will travel to Kentucky if the Lord wills it.
Since you go to Florida (where?), go meet Lourspolaire, Sylvain. He is a great guy. From Canada and lives in uhm, my memory is bad tonight. Anyway he is so funny. Trying to get him to come to Texas next Spring when IslandShari from the Marshall Islands visits. How's that for international friends. Have another sweetheart friend from the Australian forum...Chrissy. So smart and interesting. I feel so fortunate to know you and these others. God has been good to me.
Burning the candle, yes...and are there only 2 ends, seems like more than that.
I have been helping to get a vintage resale shop opened, have been doing displays, yes...I decided about a month or so ago to stay in this town, though I debated it for awhile. I have been alone for 2 years, and most of that time was spent gardening or writing or doing some form of art. That sounds good, but it was all done at home. Sometimes I thought I really needed to get out and do something among people before I became a hermit. Or...perhaps I needed to just move away closer to my family. But my family is scattered, and so which one would I move closer to? And would moving really be the answer? Maybe the answer is right here.
So I thought about it awhile, and things started happening, my friend who owns the resale shop called to ask if I would help with displays when she moved into a new building...so I did that, and one thing lead to another and I have been going to estate sales, auctions, etc...and I am having a great time.
Then my convertible guy...well, that was another happening. He is an old friend, lives nearby, and his wife died quite suddenly about 5 years ago. We started meeting for coffee a time or two...mostly talking about our 'sudden deaths' we have in common...and our kids were all friends...then that led to the theatre, and I enjoyed his company and particularly his wonderful black Mercedes convertible...who wouldn't.
But I was working so much and for so many hours, I didn't see him often...when suddenly he started fixing dinner for me every evening. Nobody has ever fixed dinner for me except my mother all those years ago...and he opens my car door...and he lets me drive his car...and he is a treasure. We are very good friends. And it's good to have someone to talk with at the end of the day. It's also good not to panic when the door knob falls off in my hand when I walk out the door, or when I need the furnace filter changed and can't reach far enough to do it myself. So he is a good friend and good company and a good conversationalist, and a terrific cook. And when he found that I don't eat red meat, he filled his freezer with fish and shrimp. What's not to like?
I did not do well being a hermit, and something had to change...now everything has changed, I am busy and I am happy and yes, a little bit tired, but no longer am I on the verge of becoming a hermit.
You know I am not good at doing nothing, so as long as I am able, I'll keep busy.
Now if I only had time to weed...sigh.
Charlie, your gardens are gorgeous. I found a dahlia blooming happily yesterday...didn't even know I had a dahlia, but do remember planting a couple last year and they never did a thing. Suddenly one is blooming. And so is my goldenrod, and so is my bamboo. Nothing wonderful like you have, but even so, there is still some color in my gardens.
Wonderful for you to get out. Great activities. Great guy. Am very big on cooks myself! Convertible! - watch those hats don't bloom off.
Love the pictures. Goldenrod is very popular in England, Germany and the like, but took time to catch on in North America as garden cultivars. It really is a very pretty plant. As you know, they were quite wrong here about goldenrod and hayfever. Goldenrod is a credit to Kentucky or is it, it's to Kentucky's credit to have choose goldenrod as it's state flower?
As you well know, Charlie, goldenrod does not create the allergies...other plant around it might, but not goldenrod. It is a gorgeous plant and one I look forward to as soon as fall arrives. It's one thing KY did right!
Yeah, I just let the wind do it's thing to my hair in the convertible, no hats, I don't want to lose one.. ^_^
And the hair doesn't matter, it is what it is anyway, like a freaky curly brillo pad.
Gotta run...and that is literally what I do, I hope I remember to stop and smell the roses.
Probably, the flower type of goldenrod (compact) is an indicator that it is insect pollinated (know latter is correct). At least the wind pollinated ragweed plant (causes hayfever - and as you suggest blooms at the same time as goldenrod), is overall quite open (viz. a lot of flower exposed to the wind).
A few pictures of garden #2.
Best current part of front garden:
New England asters (Including Alma Pötschke), Helenium, Phlox (Little Laura), the last of the Echinacea and Agastache (second bloom).
Admit I'm being selective in what parts of a garden I show, but do make an effort to optimize all parts of a garden. Sometimes difficult to deal with certain locations, especially small areas. In recent years have refused to put in shade gardens. I like colour throughout the growing season. With shade here, at least, you can really only get colour in spring and the shade can't be dry shade.
That front garden above is very largely three or less years old. Find a perennial garden looks good about two or three years after it was first put in.
After that it gets much more challenging to keep it looking nice year after year.
To be honest, though I love perennial gardening, I do find maintaining perennial gradens that I have installed, on other people's property, a bit stressful. Perennial plants just don't stay put, usually need to be periodically majorly disturbed and have varying lifespans in varying conditions. And that without even thinking about watering, weeding, staking, deadheading, cutting back, etc.. I now count it luck that most of the people whose perennial gardens I installed could'nt afford to then have them maintained by me!
Gardening with annuals is so much easier, but then you're stuck with the same colours (blooms) all season.
I have taken up literally a pick-up load of perennials the last two days. Yard crew just left and they picked up all my messes before they mowed. My compost pile is so full I don't have room for anything else until it has "done it's thang".
Christi, you sound as though you've been very, very busy gardening!
Been busy too. Garden #2's family is having a wedding tomorrow and only got told about it yesterday. Having to use a lot of mums and manicuring Goldsturm and the last helenium. The asters are fine. Still business man who owns the property is a very nice guy and I'm happy to pull the lead out. Gardens going to look nice, but light showers forcaste for afternoon. Hope weather is OK for them.
Have to finish the garden before noon tomorrow and then get a birthday gift.
Going to birthday party for the Mayor! I certainly believe she's that nowadays rare politician whom you can trust. Met her through David, as she has been a strong proponent of preserving and extending parklands and also of preserving our wetlands (important to migratory birds).
Maybe as said, the Town Council is having a real problem in handling an elderly renegade Council member. The latter was a former Mayor herself, who was then elected back to the Council. She also caused problems for the Mayor before the current one, but has got worse since then. I hadn't heard the term until my later years of teaching, but she's a classic 'blocker'. She just can't cooperate as a member of a team and undermines the efforts of the rest of the team. She may be having a fun time herself, but she's certainly not helping the electorate/tax payers.
Mayor's birthday party sounds fun, and good for her for supporting parklands and wetlands.
There's always a blocker...they simply enjoy that particular purpose in life, and I think they do feel it is their unique calling. Boooo for them, there is usually one in every group. I often wonder what makes people that way.
I should really ask this one "what makes (her) that way". Of course, she may hit me with the large beach-type bag that she seems to carry around. Or she may even sue me, as she is the Major, the Council and the Auroran (the local newspaper)!
Charlie, you have a very good way with words. Maybe you could engage here as a casual friend and you and the missus could help her change her ways. At least you might deduce why she is so disagreeable with every proposal. It's amazing what can be done with kindness. You really have nothing to loose and lots to gain.
Not really. Remember in the not too distant past I was HOA president of 140 rooftops. I can be VERY DETERMINED. Also can play the political game when necessary and sweet talk someone into seeing it my way. It is called manipulation. Now, Sharon, every female in the free world is familiar with that characteristic. Starts with their daddy's. Sounds like this lady has developed a habit of being her own team and going at everyone else. There is more to her story. Most likely, enjoys the spotlight just because she is obstinate. Boy, what amount of attention if she agreed, just once.
Now listen to me. I have been trying to win over MIL for 50 years and haven't been successful yet. hahahaha
Christi, guess you're saying: "there's more ways than one to skin a cat" (pardon the metaphor, Sharon). Think there's one about catching more flies with honey, or is it using carrots rather than sticks!
Bet you can be determined, Christi, and I'm beginning to see also cunning!
Re the MIL, we do have a sister-in-law whom we really don't like. She says very spiteful things about other people and has all the charm of a lily beetle. Carol's mother's mother who was a very likeable and entertaining character used to say" "You like your friends, but you love to hate your enemies". However, as you say, in politics (and business) this is not a productive strategy for success.
Below, only the third Monarch I've seem this year, but with the wet summer
there's been more plants in bloom than there usually is. This is the first I've seen on a flower, this year: a traditional no-name pink New England aster. I clearly remember them, in past years, on the purple coneflowers, but the latter have almost all finished blooming. Maybe the migration is somewhat delayed this year?
Josephine (Frostweed on the Texas forum) gave me a type of milkweed last fall. Counted 10 Monarch cats this morning. Am told they only lay their eggs on milkweed. I have 19 chrysalis waiting to hatch in the butterfly cage. Had some 25 more cats and I had to put them back on the rue. We will be leaving next Thursday for 11 days and I was afraid they wouldn't be ready to inclose. Fascinating.
I've heard milkweed (several kinds) too.
Fascinating, as you say.
Know our Monarchs winter in northern? Mexico. Think one generation breeds here and gets to Mexico. Think it takes two generations for them to return. I wonder if your breeding ones are the first generation of the two it takes to get up North. Am going to try to check this out.
Planted 5 ferns, one very large healthy climbing rose (Peggy Martin), seeds from five stalks of hollyhock, and weeded 2 huge beds before I planted. Sigh.
And did 3 loads of laundry and hung a painting in a different location.
I took this weekend off to relax, but couldn't relax till I got some stuff done. Now I only have 25 bulbs to plant. And a mimosa tree. And a tall thing that I have no clue what it is. And another rose bush. But they will have to wait till tomorrow, I have run out of steam for today.
Just had a bright yellow butterfly visit me while I was planting, Christi, it is solid yellow with a very thin black edging, like it had been outlined. Never saw anything like it before, but it was very very pretty. It was everywhere I was, sat on the blooms on the cardinal vine for awhile, but I am not sure what kind it is. Any ideas? Was not a monarch or swallowtail or anything I am familiar with.
Where are you traveling to, Christi...maybe Kentucky? I think you and Charlie and spouses should all come to KY. Wouldn't that be fun. You could help me weed and dig holes.
Used to love digging holes when I was quite young. Still, was a bit worried that
I would get close to the other side of the globe and the ocean would come through. Dug lots of holes doing archaeology in England. Continued digging holes subsequently with gardening and still like digging them (as long as there are'nt electrical cables or sprinkler pipes present). Weeds are another matter!
Talk about a mundane life!!! That I have had. I live 13 miles from the hospital in which I was born. Lived in one home with my parents. Had a rent house the first year I was married. Bought a little bungalow and had 2 children in 5 years. Then moved to this house I am in Feb. 10, 1967. Had a toddler and one 10 months old then. Still here. Charlie, I think my personal roots must be somewhere in China. Couldn't get them up if I wanted to, and I don't.
We are going to Gulfport Mississippi and the surrounding area. Hope we haven't made a bad choice. Our best friends are going, too. She is the only one that likes to gamble so the rest of us will watch the crowd. I don't know how far they have come since Katrina. The casinos have all the money in the world anyway so they are all up and running again.
For kicks, we do have reservations at Emeril LaGasse's Fish House in one of the casinos.
Charlie, you must share your biography with us. Sounds so interesting.
Cute, cute, cute, Charlie...but WOW, how did you know I love nasturtiums?? I love them, love the scent, love their little faces...ahhhhh, and I have not grown them in years. I hope that's what they are, I am so tired I am not sure my eyes are working properly.
Now that photo just plain made me smile.
Going out to dinner tonight, so best get moving. You all have a great evening.
Christi, bought the head and paws, I think at a fall fair (Carol loves the fairs and aims to buy Christmas presents there). Even then (on a pumpkin), they reminded us of Buddy (who used to be close to 30 lbs).
Still make us smile too, Sharon.
We also like nasturtiums!
Interesting to read a very! brief summary of your biography, Christi. It sounds very steady and sensible. Know from what you've previously said, you're a person who finds interest in things. Me too. Clearly, Sharon as well. Can travel in our mind (ideas, places, good company, etc.).
Love that advice to Sharon "eat dessert first". Have a sweet tooth too. Think Sharon mentioned the same.
My sweet tooth history: As young children, we always had "Sunday morning sweets (candies)". You'd wake up in the morning and there'd be a saucer of candies by your pillow (placed by Dad).
One particular event makes me smile: We were pretty young and sitting on the little bridge in the garden (Tilly (my sister), myself and our dear Mum). Mum had a paper bag with 2 lbs of custard cream biscuits (cookies) in it. She said to the two of us, "Let's all have eight (or a number like that) each". Then she said "Well, let's all have another six each". Then she looked in the bag and said "We might as well finish them off" and we all had another four. A great lesson in sharing, generosity and inclusiveness. Maybe not the best in good eating habits!
Hope it was a great dinner, Sharon.
Trip sounds very exciting, Christi.
Well, it was a short dinner because I had worked all day in the yard and in the house and I had an article on my mind that I wanted to write...so I came home early and as I sat down to work on the article, I had a chocolate craving. Got up and ran in the rain to the deli, grabbed some still hot chocolate no bake oatmeal cookies and munched my way through the article.
My kinda night.
Now the article is written and believe it or not i still have cookies left!
Christi, I always eat dessert first, and in between. Isn't that what desserts are for?
Charlie, your description of your Mom and your sister and you made me think of what we call cream puffs, a flaky crust filled with custard. Yummy.
No, I won't be baking any tonight, probably not tomorrow either. All this chocolate should take me through the next week or two.
You all have a great evening, I think I am about to crash into my computer, and the trouble is, I'd never feel a thing, I am that tired.
I'm such a stay at home. Already getting anxious about being gone for 11 days as we will have 2 days travel on both ends and stay there for 7 days. I took all of the caterpillars that had not yet become chrysalis and put them back on the host plants. There are 19 chrysalis still in the little cage and there is no way they will inclose before we leave. I don't know where to put them outside the cage where they will be safe. May just leave them in there and open the top so they could fly out. I have become so attached to yet another living thing that I feel responsible for interrupting nature. But they are low on the food chain and most don't make it without help.
Then there is Chester and Mattie. Chester is Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, 1 1/2. Mattie is Schi-Tzu, 6. Both of them are horribly spoiled and expect a treat at certain times of the day. It is astounding how they start barking at just the same time everyday for the treat. We have a doggie door and a wonderful yard so they are happy with that.
It is the constant companionship they will miss. Our daughter will come to feed and water and give one of the three treats.
Instead of feeling excited, I am anxious for my animals. We did get the bird feeders restocked. I didn't get this way as I have gotten old. I have always been like this.
Our trip to Gulfport and Biloxi will be a lesson in humility I am sure. Have heard from others that the results of Katrina are still very evident. Only the moneyed casinos are back in shape. Lots of tax money has been thrown around and an unprecedented amount of donations. Wonder where it went?
Charlie, I have forgotten where you stay in Florida. The past 5 years we four have stayed in a condo on Mustang Island which is just across the causeway from Corpus Christi, Texas. We decided a condo in Gulfport might be a good change. We shall see.
Awwww, Christi, it isn't just you.
When I am up at the shop, only 2 blocks away, I think of my cats.
And now that I have Cupcake (abandoned neighbor's cat) I turn down my street dreading that I might see her lying wounded or worse in the ditch.
And if mine aren't watching for me from the window, then I wonder if they are somewhere suffering in the house.
But usually, I try to think of the glass as half full, not half empty. Outlooks and perceptions can change, I think, but it takes work.
Remember a few years ago when the young girl went missing in Aruba...that nearly drove me crazy, still does when I think of it, she was on her senior trip. Remember?
Anyway...I am trying to change my way of thinking, because I sure can't change the situation.
I still have holes to dig today. And I am suffering from digging holes yesterday. But the day is gorgeously clear and sunny, and quite cool, so I will enjoy being out in it, whether or not I have the energy to dig a gazillion holes.
Your trip will be great, I just know you will have a good time.
I'll be back later, and I hope I am not moaning by then.
Sharon, love Ethan's linguistic work (Christi, reply to comment after current article). Kittywhomp would be a very useful word for us, but I'm not sure if they had animals like Buddy on Noahzark. Used to have a numerical taxonomy (said to be objective classification) article and one of the fictional animals to classify was called a zark - so they do exist!
"Hot chocolate no bake oatmeal cookies" = haute cuisine!
Christi, go to St Pete Beach.
Sure everything on the home front will be fine while you're away.
Your daughter will be keeping an eye on Chester and Mattie.
And the little dears will appreciate you and Mike even more when you return! Wouldn't worry about the (pre)butterflies, you sound like you've got it all worked out.
Very sad about Katrina and some of what's happened (or not happened) subsequently.
Beautiful day here, too. One my way to transplant some lilies. Only 4 years ago I paid $1 for one Easter Lily. Put it in the ground because I didn't know what else to do with it. Well, it has become at least 50 lilies since then. Seems I am always moving something because it is not in the most advantageous spot. Often it should not have been in that spot anyway but sometimes the plant in question is overshadowing something or the other way round.
My host plant for Monarch butterflies is covered with cats. Yeah!!
Once has a young man here doing some tile work. He was from Mariposa (butterly) Mexico where the Monarchs winter. He said it was magic as they literally cover everything.
Love lilies too, Christi, but can't keep them here, because of lily beetles.
The orange beetles breed on oriental type lilies and fritillaria, but also now feed on other things (certainly toadlily). They just eat the leaves away.
They don't affect daylilies, so I switched to them. Think I recently read there's a new pest or something that affects daylilies (only so far in a few limited areas in the States). It's got to stay away from Kentucky!
Know exactly what your saying about having to move stuff in the garden, almost a juggling act. Great about the Monarchs.
Spending next few hour working on updating plant records for our own garden, what's planted where. Worse than juggling and next to impossible.
But that shouldn't stop me!
Bet you're really busy getting ready to go, Christi,
Have a great time.
Has rained on and off the last two days here and is quite cold for this time of year. Evenings beginning to remind one of winter. Bit too slippery (wet clay) in other gardens, so have worked (carefully) in ours. Gardening clothes very muddy.
Been reading recently local politics on-line, as feel (after the party) I too should do something to help. Blogging blocker (July) compared the Mayor and majority of Council to characters in the Snow White story. "In this place (Aurora) and at this time, we see the old story play out. The Queen (certainly the Mayor) who must be the only star in the firmament, the axe-wielding woodsman (a Councillor?), the hag with the poison apple (another Councillor?), the whole shebang". In the same entry, the blocker (a member of the Town Council !) says "Only lackeys, sycophants and lesser stars (these three categories must be intended to include the majority of the Town Council !!!) must be permitted to circulate within her (the Mayor's) orbit". At least in this case, the influence of political blogs is doing nothing for the Public Good.
It is past time our Sharon sees the MD. If I were closer, I would just go to her house and take her. We seniors don't throw off things like we did when we were younger. I had what the doctor actually called "walking pneumonia" last Spring which began only 2 days before my Aaron died. Had I not gone and been plied with lots antibiotics I, too, could have left this realm. And of course, stress completely kills your immune system, be it good or bad stress, body can't tell the difference.
Politics is seldom pretty. There must have been a good side to it sometime in history. This lady is certainly poison. I always wonder how this type of person continues to be elected over and over. Who are the supporters of this type person? Goodness, Charlie. Maybe I was wrong about trying to be her friend. Stoning her sounds like a better idea. hahaha
Shin really getting better too.
We were very interested to hear our doctor say that wounds should be kept moist and covered, so a scab would'nt form. Surprised. Had always thought a scab was good.
Have a blog question. Told the difference between blog moderators versus blog contributors is that the latter "write the initial post" and the former "review and approve the comments in response to the original blog".
What is the "blog author"?
Really don't like the idea of (functionally) anonymous blog contributors on political blogs.
Christi, sure you're having lots of fun. Excellent!
Looking at a very calm Gulf of Mexico this morning while I have my coffee. The town is rather a sad place. Very few homes built back after 5 years. Concrete slabs where a family used to be. Signs with messages actually begging someone to buy their property. Soon as we finish the coffee we are going to walk the beach. So different from Mustang Island where the waves and tide washed up high all the time. Here the water's edge is constant and it is very still. Also the Texas sand is tan, this is bright white. Took two full days driving to get here, 600 miles plus a little. Went to a really neat little cafe last night and had fantastic fresh seafood. The young family running it are part of the original father with 9 kids that started it all 38 years ago. Of course, every single building is new. This part of the world was wiped off the face of the map with Katrina. New Orleans got all the attention because of poor engineering with the levees. That didn't have to happen. This part of the Gulf for miles and miles and miles was the center of the hurricane. It has taken 5 years to clean up the debris. I have seen tornados up close and personal at my own home 3 times and it is much worse than pictures. Same for a hurricane. Am counting my blessings and praying for all these people who have been uprooted forever.
Sharon, you will soon or late own a ladies store.
You deserve the money for the sales. Without your talent, it would still be in boxes.
Take care of yourself.
Don't know what happened. Had a long post to Charlie and it disappeared.
Charlie, that is news to me about a wound. Wait a year and they will change their minds back to the old advice.
Good to hear from you, Christi...it is hard to see all that devastation, isn't it? Much harder to think of the families. Enjoy your visit, and be safe.
Charlie, I don't like blogs for obvious reasons, anonymity for one. I am not familiar enough to say but wouldn't the blog author and the blog moderator be one and the same?
You know I am well when I over sleep, and oversleep, I did this morning. Weather is in the mid 50's at night and mid 70's during the day...clear blue skies and wonderful sunshine. I am loving every minute.
I need to get moving, have a great day!
Oh, Charlie, maybe the wound was deep enough it needed to heal from the inside out. In that case keeping a scab away makes sense.
Christi, glad you, Mike and friends are having a really good break. Your
information about this area, so long after Katrina, is extremely interesting.
Took journalism classes myself, long ago, and worked summers as an interpretative writer. Your information and writing is correspondent quality.
Again, very interesting.
The fresh seafood sounds great!
Don't worry about missing post. "Wound" was just me getting too tired, at dusk, and falling on rocks while arranging a sprinkler. Got infected. Really interferred with my contracted gardening, but much better and all gardening under great control now. Know what you're saying about health advice.
Sharon, I didn't know anything about blogs, but I now understand why you don't like them. Nothing anonymous or secretive about Sharran (=Sharon).
Sure the C in LouC is the same. Beginning to feel bad about SunnyBorders, but I do love colour in the garden, which means the sun requirement.
Great you overslept. Needed it. Weather sounds wonderful. Enjoy.
Interesting about the scab suggestion. Scab doesn't seem to be a very attractive word, does it! One nice thing about one not forming is, don't need to use the word again.
I remember the first time I ever saw you post, Charlie...think it was in one of the NE forums. I looked at your user name, SunnyBorders, and I looked at your words, and I thought immediately that I'd like you. It must have been the words that did it, because I had no clue who you were or even if you were male or female at the time. Your user name reflects your nature, I think, and obviously so does Christi.
I think I might actually survive now.
If I can get out from under the accumulated debris on every surface of my house. Sigh...
Glad you liked the name, Sharon.
Was bit surprised nobody else was using it.
My little business is called English Gardens: Perennial Gardening.
As always repeat, am a sunshine gardener. Sun = Colour.
Don't always see eye-to-eye with trees.
Sometimes accused them of being "light hogs" and said "they should get back to the forests where they belong". But glad to report that after reading your writings, Sharon, have become a bit more tolerant!
Great news, of course, re your health, Sharon.
Christi, second what Sharon says, "keep on enjoying, ..."
Was away overnight (visiting friends) and also computor problems.
Guy coming to look at computor today.
Have a great day and don't try to do too much (but enough!).
Sure Christi having fun.
Now working, Sharon.
Hope problem is resolved (for reasonable life expectancy of computer).
Good point - photos from Christi!
Of course, if she's not too busy with Lady Luck - but she did say she was going as a spectator!
Going to get an early night as have to get out early tomorrow to go down and do the School garden with Ben. Ben (20ish) is a very reliable assistant and more efficient than me. Don't know about a penny earned is a penny saved, but dollars, spent or earned efficiently, are worth more than dollars not.
Wisdom really does come with age, Sharon, but it's a pity it comes too late! Oh well.
(I should have learned to spell too, but corrected: more inefficiency?)
There is just something captivating about a casino. Quite sure many hours of study of the human nature. Afraid I was pulled into the fray...lost money, got it back, lost it again. It is just too unreal. The amount I played with was very insignificant actually. I'm one of those that makes a penny squeal before I turn loose of it. Actually, I still stoop to pick up a dropped penny in a parking lot.
Haven't even gotten my camera out of the bag. The devastation is heart breaking. Nothing I want to record. We are going to a bird sanctuary today hoping to see Sand Hill Cranes.
Talked to my daughter and neighbor, our dogs are supposed to be at home with visits to keep them company. They have managed to get out of the yard twice and because they have id tags, someone has returned them. As of now, they are on Becky and Gregg's side of the fence. Might know with us 600 miles away.
You would both enjoy this. An event called "Cruising the Beach" which has been going on for 13 years is this week. Everyday more people and their vintage cars that have been thoroughly restored arrive here. Since Mike and I were graduates of 58 and 59 this is just up our alley. Lots of reaaaal expensive motorhomes as well. People are camping on the slabs where homes formerly stood. Must already be 5000 vintage cars here and we are told it will increase everyday. We are on the 8th floor and our balcony faces Beach Rd. and the ocean. Sit here in the mornings with our coffee and take it all in.
Our friends are our age so all 4 of us are enjoying it.
We absolutely love sitting on a balconey, facing the ocean, in a warm place, having morning coffee. And with all those vintage cars, must be quite a sight.
You're really doing and seeing a lot of different things, Christi!
Charlie, how has your day been?
I've been musing about my cat, Jazz. When I get a twinge of vertigo, which I do sometimes, Jazz walks down the hall leaning against my leg...as if to keep me from wobbling into the far wall of the hallway. That's the only time he ever does it, when I am wobbly from vertigo.
My friend tells me that cats just do that, lean against your leg. But Daisy doesn't do it, only Jazz, and only when it seems I might wobble sideways into the wall. Weird. I wish I knew cat language.
Not bad, Sharon,
Not entirely happy about being at the school, though at least it's just to garden. The kids I taught have graduated and now I just feel sorry for good classroom teachers who're not allowed "to call a spade, a spade". I'm a firm believer in student rights, but the rights shouldn't include the right of a very few students to highjack a class (even if their parent is on the Parent Council).
Jazz sounds like a very sensitive cat! Very helpful compared to Buddy.
The latter just runs in front of your feet in a desperate rush to reach the food plate, whether it's meal time or not. Not good, since I too have a bit of a balance problem (in my case related to arthritis). In my case, I wish Buddy understood human language, including dire and terrible threats!
I think I told you about doing displays for the shop uptown. So that's what I did today. The displays sell as quickly as I can get a new one up so it keeps me hopping. But it is fun to come up with a display that works. And mine always work. We are good at what we do, each of us, I think.
Tomorrow I'll stay home maybe. I want to do some house work more than I want to share my talents with the shop people. I am just in a home mood. And I set my own hours anyway, so it'll be a good thing,
I had an episode with dehydration last week, and I am now on Pedialyte. Do you know how embarrassing it is to go into a store and ask for Pedialyte. It is for children, good grief. So I asked cute doc if there was anything else I could take to bring my electrolytes up to par, and he said for my size, 4 little bottles of Pedialyte per day would be perfect, no more, no less, and to leave it at that for another week or so. I go back for a blood check on Friday. i do hope I can graduate to something a little less embarrassing to ask for. Sigh.
Whatever works, though, I don't want to go back to my agony of last week. Not fun.
And tomorrow I need to weed too. I have one large bed that I have neglected. It is a daylily bed, but over the years has begun to accumulate other things. Dahlias, 4 o'clocks, artemesia ...I think that's spelled wrong. Some very controlled bamboo, a few daisies, coneflowers, just odds and ends that folks have given me and I kept extending that bed with them. I really need to get it more organized. It is probably thoroughly embarrassed being such a mixed bed. Maybe tomorrow.
The shop displays and retailing sound like a lot of fun, Sharon. But so nice you can chose when you want to do them.
House work and weeding! Not such fun. At least a change of pace?
Sure Jazz and Daisy would rather have you at home.
I didn't know what Pedialyte was. I might have guessed it was something to do with kids (pais: Greek), but at least you're not going to a pae(e)diatrician!
Seriously though, I'm very glad to hear your doing what you need to for good health.
Hello, guys. Didn't forget the camera. Purposely have not taken it out of the case. To take pictures of the ongoing agony of the destruction is not appealing. We happened upon vacant FEMA house yesterday. Typical waste of our tax money. I could really get kicked off DG were I to say what I think after seeing all of this. The people are lovely. Friendly, and very hard working. The two DH are gone to buy shrimp off the boat this morning. I protested that our condo will not have a good aroma after cooking it here and we have found some really fantastic food establishments.
Very newsworthy, Christi.
Wish we could say a bit more than we should.
The people sound great.
That they work at getting past the ordeal of (post)Katrina really says a lot for them. The shrimps and the really fantastic food establishments are win-win: great for visitors and helps the local economy.
The home boiled shrimp was great. I am very adept at peeling them but this was the first time I had to "head" them as well. Sharon would not like it at all. They have eyes. New Potatoes and corn on the cob went in the pot with them. A little french bread and we had a feast. Tonight is our last night here and we have reservations at Emeril LeGasses' Fish House. Do either of you ever watch him on tv? He has moved from Food Network to the Green Channel. One night we went to "The Blow Fly" for soft shell crab. Oh, what decadence every meal here has been. The last mentioned has been in "Southern Living", "Emeril Live" and "Diners, Drive-ins and Dives". Many places here are famous outside this area. Start home tomorrow with no particular route picked out as yet.
This is about my limit to be away from home. Anxious to see my family and my Mattie and Chester. Our little Erin started dance lessons this week and I know she has a lot to tell. Payton is advancing in here class and I expect she will be dancing with the professionals very soon. I am so proud of her.
Feel hungry, Christi.
Don't know of the chef? you mention, but he sounds worth knowing about!
Nice picture. Too late for me to do this sort of thing (actually never was a time)! But great about the girls. Good for Payton. Takes a lot of self-discipline.
Very cute when the little ones (as Erin) start.
Off to see Tim downtown (downtown Toronto). He's making a surprise birthday diner for Carol (only has Thursdays and Fridays off at present). Then going to see Julia and Julie (right way round?). Mentioned it when both you and Sharon said you liked it.
Know how you feel. Super holiday, but nice to get back home.
That's called "low country" what you just ate, Christi. I love low country. When I spend time with my relatives in Savannah, that's what we eat. One big pot full of little red potatoes and corn then in goes the shrimp. Nooooooooo, don't tell me shrimp got eyes...noooooooo...
And a little bag of spices to perk up the pot. I love love love low country.
Love the picture of Peyton. You have a safe trip home, and remember only the good things. People are people wherever we go. I am sure you have boosted their economy considerably.
Good morning, Charlie...I am off to the shop on this rainy Friday morning. A beautiful gentle rain. Then tonight my boys will be here, I think, so that will be fun.
You all have a great big beautiful day.
I'll be back tonight.
No boys tonight. They decided it was raining so they stayed in Chicago.
Fine with me, I am tired and need some me time.
The older I get, and the more I am alone, the more I value my 'me' time.
Selfish? You betcha.
Charlie, how was your day?
Happy Birthday to Carol!!
And yayyy for your Tim. What a great son you have.
Just got back (out twelve hours).
Sorry to hear boys delayed, but as you say more time to get things done.
Not re selfish, but (for me at least) re energy levels.
Canadian Thanksgiving and Carol's birthday on 12th (this year) and 16th, respectively. Tim will be working (TTC: Toronto Transit Commission: driving) on these dates, so he had a lunch (turkey and birthday cake) to cover them today (day off). Did it all himself including getting presents and card, from him and myself. Presents: DVD player for TV, DVDs and a Julia Child book. After saw the Julia and Julie film, as said. We all really liked it.
Wow! What a great son and a great birthday!. I love his home, and the paintings on his walls. You told us something about those paintings once, and I have forgotten what you said. A relative did them, sorry, I can't remember.
Ms. Carol looks very happy. I like her sweater, too. It must be colder there than here.
Arranged to go to Hogan's (an old Canadian inn: old by Canadian standards: perhaps (1870?)) for Carol's birthday, on 17th, with two old friends. Had hoped Tim could also come, but couldn't due to his job.
Got to get down to some more gardening. Asters, fall monkshoods and mums still fine, but lots to cut back and need to do spring bulbs.
Been trying to copy Christi's hours and get to bed relatively early, due to shin.
Going to take at least another month to finally heal and don't want to give myself excuse for another accident. Got to use only full daylight for gardening and be as awake as possible.
I didn't realize the extent of the injury, I guess.
I'm sorry, Charlie. At this point in our lives we all need to be more careful.
I need to practice some self restraint as well, and stop burning the candle at both ends.
You get a good rest, and have a great day tomorrow.
Tim is heavily into retro furniture and accessories, Sharon.
and also insisted on saving some old and worn furniture that came from Carol's parents' home. One of his projects is to get some of it re-covered.
He wouldn't change the yellow though. Carol's Mom was not very maternal, but when Tim was a late teenager and young person, he and his Grandma became quite close. The paintings were her's (earlier ones) and she loved yellow.
That makes two of us. Didn't recognize it myself either, Sharon.
I tend to be an eternal optimist and strongly favour positive thought in personal matters. Unfortunately, we can't continue to ignore or will health, as the two of us probably realize. In my case, an added aspect is the poor circulation in the ankle and foot due to arthritis. Seems easier to ignore arthritis than some secondary arthritic effects.
Had better get to bed. Want to get some pictures of the fall monkshood tomorrow. Back then.
Good Morning. Start home today. Last night's dinner was yet another spectacular experience. This town has some of the best seafood in all the world. Had red snapper last night for the first in a very long time. The service was superb, you would have thought we were royalty with no hint of snobbishness that comes in some places.
You have raised a wonderful son. What a truly thoughtful thing to do. I noticed the glass insulators. In that I have been a collector for most of my life and once had an antique shop, I have dozen or so of the insulators myself. I use them for pattern weights when I sew. Now that has been a long time.
Rained here very hard last night and this morning it is beautiful and the water is calm. Talked to Kelly yesterday and it seems Mattie and Chester have moved next door. Gregg said just to leave them, it was better than having them stand at the gate and bark continuously. I am at a loss as to what to do to return the favor. Have collected a sack full of oyster shells and read they are good for a koi pond to keep the ph correct. Will have to research further and then will offer them to go in their pond.
Like a barn sour horse, when it is time to go home, you can't hold me back.
Sharon, Mike declares next year our destination is Kentucky. wooohooo!
Hi Christi and Sharon,
Saw about haute cuisine in Child film, but sounds like Christi's been experiencing it too. Interesting what Sharon said re "low country" cuisine.
Raised in Europe, I would have taken that to be Dutch cooking!
Safe trip back, Christi. Sure Mattie and Chester will be more than happy to return home when you do. Sounds like they were lonely without their family.
Flowers getting a bit scrappy, Sharon. Late in season, though fall monkshood just out/coming out, as said.
Only problem with flowering now is it delays cutting perennials back in order to plant the spring bulbs. Latter, my least favorite gardening job.
Can't make my mind up about single colour blocks of hybrid crocus or mixed colour blocks. Find I have to replace crocuses. Think they are the favorite bulb of the voles. Find continual cultivation tends to mix up the different colored surviving bulbs anyway. Also find ochre, white and white/purple-mauve striped (Pickwick) - in flower - are easier to see towards the back of a flower bed than purple-mauve ones.
Sharon, you sound like a perfectionist like me!
Think we're too demanding on ourselves.
Just can't keep all bases covered with gardening.
The small pink bulb I use is Chionodoxa 'Giant Pink'. As said, the blue Chionodoxa is a terrible (for me) seeder. David did say 'Giant Pink' or 'Pink Giant' seeds, but in my experience it stays in clumps.
Have got some more pink double shortish tulips to plant (Angelique), which I really liked this spring. Need more spring bulbs.
After a quick continental breakfast in the lobby we will be on the road again. We have
seen miles and miles of forest. Only color peaking here and there is yellow. Much of it is Black Eyed Susan and the other is what I call ragweed. All in the undergrowth is a very short fan palm. Of course, Louisiana is swamp land so I wouldn't want to to try to break through the undergrowth. We spent the night in Alexandria, La. Big college football game here last night and the traffic was horrendous coming through town. Also a children's soccer tournament and all the hotels were full. We are fortunate that we are in a brand spankin' new Comfort Inn with 200 kids and their parents. Mike just went to get coffee and he said the breakfast area is overrun. Only 5 hours to home! Yay!
Sharon, hope you are feeling better. And you, too, Charlie, with your injured leg.
Christi, closing in on home.
Interesting to hear about the plant life and people action on the way home.
We always start with coffee too.
Love the place name, Alexandria: know (knew) Alexandria, Va, quite well.
Hellenism and the few centuries from the founding of Alexandria, Egypt, is my favorite period of history.
Leg getting better all the time, thanks.
(Correction: Hellas is Greece: 2 'Ls': write the plant name helenium (named for Helen of Troy) all the time. Getting old, or is it just too much in the mind?)
Love that: "playing in the dirt". It also goes by the name of heavy work!
Been cutting back perennials for a few hours yesterday and again today at garden #2. Quite enjoy it. Don't mind weeding either. Anything destructive doesn't require lots of intelligent foresight. So much more relaxing than having to think! And the fact that it's constructive destructiveness, and everybody is in favour of it, makes it socially exceptable!
Got home about 4PM and just finished going through the mail. Oh my goodness what a mess Mattie and Chester were. Didn't get to see the neighbors to get the full story. They were both muddy and Chester's long hair on his ears actually had mud balls all tangled up.
Mattie was some better but not much. First thing Mike had to do was bathe them both as I grabbed the broom. Was told it has been raining here all week and they have been going in and out. BIG MESS. They are both conked out now in their own doggie beds. I am not far behind. ...and it is still raining. Rain gauge only went to 5 inches so we don't really know how much rain we got. It has been emptied and is filling once again. As expected, the brugs are blooming like crazy. Would really like to see them in the sunshine. Prediction is for at least 2 more days of rain. Feast or Famine it seems.
Sooooo glad to be home to my own bed. Really a big time homebody.
Good to hear you're back, Christi.
Thanks for all that news during the trip.
Fascinating. Almost felt I was there with you, Mike and friends.
Sorry about the state of the two little rascals and the cleanup for you and Mike.
Still, home, sweet home!
Buddy is currently driving us straight up the wall.
Picture: He just had turkey (Canadian Thanksgiving).
He just had his diner (Much usually just pushed around and off the plate).
And he always expects and demands more food.