Been awhile ..


It’s been about three years since I last posted on this blog. It’s been a little over two years since my mom died after a long battle with Alzheimer’s. Just did’t feel like talking.

A new family member …

IMG_0738

Katie is a little over one year old, has yellow and white fur, and is smarter than I am (not much of a stretch really). She was a pound kitty and practically feral when I got her and I spent the first few months trying to entice her off a dining room chair. Now, she’s so lovey-dovey she’ll even sit in my lap and let me pet her—for about a minute.

She’s worse than a dog about following me around the house, however, and is very vocal when she thinks it’s time to refill her kibble bowl or clean her box. She really hates a messy litter box and since I hate cleaning it, she’s becoming something of a nag. Cute, but a nag nonetheless. She likes a lot of attention so I’m thinking about getting a puppy to keep her occupied so I can read, or nap, uninterrupted.

We’ll see how it goes.

A new house …

I moved to a new house a little over a year ago. I’d been at the condo/townhouse for about 15 years and wanted to have a yard again. Not sure why that was so important to me since I don’t like mowing and am not particularly fond of weeding either, but I do like looking out the window and seeing grass and trees instead of a parking lot or a swimming pool full of screaming kids.

And, I really was getting awfully fed up with the HOA police patrol always finding fault with my patio or fence or carport. I mean did those folks have nothing better to do than walk around the complex to see who’d sat a pot of flowers on their carport?

A new gig …

I recently retired and now have time to think about stuff and can get back to blogging. Well, it’s either that or cleaning house. I hate cleaning house. It’s right up there with going to the dentist or waiting for car repairs.

See, I’m getting back into the swing of this already.

 

 

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Gettin’ potted …


Having cats in the house can make raising potted plants a bit challenging.

IMG_0152My cats liked to eat and/or play with house plants. Their favorite targets were peace lilies and violets but any old kind of plant would do in a pinch. They did not, however, mess with ficus, which is why I have two 7-foot-tall beauties, grown from sprouts. Any other kind of plant, though, was fair game.

IMG_0159Both Ollie and Emily passed in the last couple of years. I adored them (even when they were being evil) and miss them terribly.

The house felt kind of empty without them (I’m just not ready for more lovable furry creatures) so I decided to get a peace lily. That led to a finger leaf philodendren, which led to a croton, then a spider plant.

I think it’s beginning to get out of hand 

IMG_0154They’re all here in my home office, keeping me company on the days I work at home—and not making a single mess anywhere.

No more drifts of fuzzy hair under the furniture, no spills around the water bowl, no water bowl. Ah, the joys of no litter box.

On the flip side, there’s also no snuggling or purring or leg rubbing.

Hmmm.

It’s not that I have insomnia, I just can’t go to sleep!


Middle of the night and here I sit, munching on a pimento cheese sandwich, wondering what the heck is keeping me from sleep.

As much as I love a good pimento cheese sandwich (I make my own with Velveeta, yum!) I can’t think of anything I’d rather do right now than go to sleep but something, heaven only knows what (guilt probably from not blogging for at least a month), is keeping me awake.

Both of the monster cats are asleep. The whole town is asleep. I mean I’m sitting here in the dark typing by the light of my monitor. (Yes, I have to look at the keyboard when I type.)

So, how about an update on the last month or so?

First, the watermelon died.

Yep, and it was a nasty death, too. Some sort of blight or fungus or something invaded its bloom end. It started with a little black dot, which swelled into a bigger dot, then, finally, into a big ole monster of black rot. It was gruesome. Just thinking about it makes me queasy. So, anyway, I yanked out the while thing because, let’s face it, four melon babies, and I killed them all. So, enough with the melons.

Second, work is taking over my life.

This is not a good thing. I mean I enjoy my job. I like the work. But, I’ve been there and done that workaholic number and all it does is make you ill and leads nowhere. I caught myself working last Saturday afternoon. I didn’t have to. Nobody made me. But that web page just called out to me as I walked through my home office and I couldn’t resist. I’m so weak. Even though, I know that path leads to misery, I still dug into that code for a good hour and a half. Finally, thank the heavens, I realized what I was doing and stopped myself. Whew, that was a close one.

Third, I discovered Replacements.com.

If you haven’t been to their site, you should check it out. They have all kinds of replacement china, silver, glassware, you name it. I found replacement pieces for the spice rack that my Granny gave to me about 40 years ago.  I only ordered one, pepper, because they didn’t have the two missing jars in stock, but I was able to flag them as pieces I’m looking for so, hopefully, they’ll have them available sooner or later.

I also, got the 3 bread & butter plates that have been missing from my china for 30 years. and the missing pieces of a set of breakfast china that a friend gave to me almost 40 years ago. They belonged to her mom and she hated them and wanted to get rid of them so I said, sure, I’ll take them. They’re Royal Doulton. They have daisies and they’ve always made me smile every time I look at them.

Enough rambling. Maybe I can can go to sleep now.

Fingers crossed!

We have growth!


Melon update …

Last week my first watermelon was about 4 inches long and about 1 inch in diameter. ↓

It’s growing!

Now, a mere week later, it is about 8 inches long and 4 inches in diameter. ↓

See how big it is in comparison to the Black Eyed Susan bloom, which, let’s face it, is on its last leg.

Why, you might ask, is this such a big deal to me? Well, there were two other baby melons on the vine last week as well but mid-week some kind of spidery-grasshoppery-looking insect just sucked the life juice right out of both of them. First, they withered, then they turned black on the bottom, and before I knew what was happening they died.

(The funeral was yesterday. So sorry if you missed it. The wake was great fun. We had helium balloons and everything!)

Good news!

Yep, folks, we have a new addition to the melon family — another baby! ↓

It’s tiny, only about two inches long and one inch in diameter. (They sure are fuzzy little scamps at this stage.)

The challenge will, of course, be to keep evil spidery-grasshopper-looking bugger away from the new arrival.

A gardener’s work is just never done.

Sigh.

😉

My first baby …


… watermelon!

See it? Over there, on the right?

It’s about 4 inches long. So cool! Like all proud moms, I’ll keep you updated on its progress. There are two more of them, but they’re not as big yet. One is only about as long as my little finger.

Squash update!

I’ve picked about a dozen so far and there are at least that many more on the vine. I just love squash.

Gardening is such a joy. If you haven’t given it a try then you’re just missing out on a rewarding experience.

This is my garden. It is very small.

Oh heck, who am I kidding, it’s tiny! But, it’s all mine and I like it.

Actually, I have another flower bed on the opposite side of the patio, next to my townhouse, that had Impatiens in it. But, the gutters are stopped up and I’m having a bit of trouble getting the condo board to send someone over to clean them out.

I keep getting the run-around about hail damage insurance claims and not enough units need their gutters cleaned out to make it worth it to hire someone to clean mine. In the meantime, my little flower bed of Impatiens that, in May, looked like this, →

now looks like this.  ↓

So sad. (Yes, I know my landscape lighting needs an update. In time, folks, In time.) Anyhoo, back to my gardening epistle.

I grew up on a farm where gardening was a requirement. I hated it! There really aren’t words for how much I hated working in a garden back then.

In all fairness, let’s put that in context. I was 10 through 17 years old, stuck out in the middle of nowhere with a quarter-acre garden and only my mom, my brother, and my sister and I to manage it. Do you have any idea what a quarter-acre garden looks like? It’s huge and way too much work for one grown up and three kids.

What were they (my parents) thinking? Okay, so my father would plow it in the spring, but then, it was up to us to plant and weed, and hoe, and water, and hoe some more. Exhausting work and for what? Okra? Lima beans? Spinach? Yuck. It was all food that I mostly couldn’t stand to eat back then. (Yep, I was an idiot but I still don’t like spinach, if it’s cooked. There’s a whole other story about me and spinach but let’s save that for another time.)

The point …

Gardening is an acquired taste. Not everyone likes to spend time digging in the dirt but, for those of us who do, it is a very rewarding experience.

A few more pics of my tiny garden …

Until next time, happy summer everybody!

Psst, one of these days, I’ll learn how to crop pictures evenly, but don’t hold your breath waiting for me to get around to it. 🙂