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Sunday, August 20, 2017

Weeding and Mulching

It's been so hot and humid this summer that  I've neglected the garden.  The once pristine (well maybe pristine is pushing it a little 😉) flower beds now resemble a jungle of weeds and grass. This nice little area, for instance looked fairly tame in May.
But now it looks like this:
The iris  and shasta daisy bed looked even worse, so I decided to tackle that first and managed to get  an hour or two of work in yesterday and this morning before the heat and humidity drove me back inside.
I pulled a lot of weeds- some were over knee high.  I filled one trash can and had to start on another.
Mr. G filled up a wheelbarrow with mulch for me so I wouldn't have to haul heavy bags of mulch around and it didn't take very long at all to use most of it up.

There's still a lot of work to do and  it's frustrating  to not be able to work for very long at a time in the heat and humidity, but  it feels good to have made a start.  And I think the butterflies agree. There were several fritillaries  flitting in the zinnias  this morning, and this lovely swallowtail who  kept me company for a while.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Little Moments of Peace and Beauty

In a world  on the edge of chaos, filled with  tragedy, hate and violence, I am grateful for hummingbirds. 

And flowers. 

Friday, August 11, 2017

Vet Visits and Views From the Kitchen Window

Today was vet visit day for Agatha and Victoria.  They are both caught up on their shots and meds now and are good for another six months.  Agatha had gotten too chubby for her harness so I bought her a new adjustable one  and it came yesterday.  I adjusted it as far as I could but it still had a lot of slack in it when I put it on her this morning. Come to find out she's lost a pound and a half.  Victoria, on the other hand,  must have found what Agatha lost because she'd gained a pound or so.  But the vet said they're both in good shape, all things considered, and both are  all set for the next six months, I hope.  I did tell them they both needed to  find a job so they could help pay their vet bills before they drove me to the poor house. But they are both   too lazy for that, I fear, and prefer to  spend their time lolling about like ladies of leisure.

 Can't resist another garden pic. Several months ago, when the zinnias first came up in the back yard, they came in so thickly that I had to thin them out. I potted them up and asked  our next door neighbor if she'd like to have them. She was delighted, and planted them in  the flower bed in front of her house- which  we can see from our kitchen window. In no time at all they had  grown nice and bushy and covered with blooms. Soon butterflies and even some hummingbirds discovered them and  began visiting, fluttering about all day long. So  all summer, as we've stood at the sink washing  dishes we've had a delightful view of colorful  blooms, birds and butterflies. 

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Bees and Butterflies

Yesterday was chemo treatment day. Four and a half hours of getting pumped full of chemicals.  I  fell asleep on the way home and slept off and on most of the day.  Which is probably why I was wide awake for most of the night and dragging again this morning. So this will be one of those posts I mentioned that is mostly pics from the garden.

The zinnias have been attracting a nice assortment of butterflies and bees.  I tried to capture a shot of a hummingbird moth last week but he was too fast for me, as was the  zebra swallowtail.  But  a  few skippers, a Gulf fritillary,and a black swallowtail were more cooperative. A couple  of the pics are a little fuzzy and don't show these  jewels in their full glory, but. . .

The Gulf fritillary pic is  fuzzy and I couldn't get a good shot of him (or her) with wings fully open.

These two skippers were traveling together.  Where one went the other followed.

This busy bee  had pollen all over his body.  Maybe the weight of all that pollen slowed him down just enough for me to get a pic.😄

This swallowtail  swooped from one flower to another and spent quite a bit of time on each.

The zinnias are getting quite bedraggled by all the rain we've had lately and   may not be attracting   pollinators much longer, but it's been fun to watch for the last  couple of months.

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

To Blog or Not To Blog

One of my blogger/writer friends wrote on his blog the other day that he has written a blog post every day for the last  ten years. And that's in addition to books he's written and his regular newspaper column! And here I  was, thinking I did well if I managed to make two blog posts a month! It takes self-discipline to write every day,  especially on days when you have nothing to write about and  your muse has abandoned you. I  lack that self-discipline.  But then again, I don't claim to be a serious writer, much as I like to rattle on sometimes. Then  there's that burning question, "Does anybody read this stuff or am I just writing to --to what? To vent? to  persuade? To share something interesting that happened? Why DO people blog, anyway?

I've noticed that  many of the people whose blogs I once followed regularly now blog  infrequently or no longer blog at all. Maybe  facebook, twitter,  snapchap and other social media sites have replaced blogging. There are still a lot of die-hard, disciplined bloggers out there -- some  blog about causes they believe in, some blog to  help their businesses, some blog about their passions, political and otherwise, and others blog to share some aspects of their lives. There are probably almost as many reasons to blog as there are bloggers.  There are  also quite a few cancer blogs, where people diagnosed with various forms of cancer share  their feelings, treatments, challenges, etc. I've been doing that to some degree, but I don't want to   concentrate on cancer.  It is part of my life now,  as I navigate through various tests, procedures and treatments, but it is  just one part of my life, albeit a fairly large part. So it is part of my blog, too. If  my  experience with cancer can help someone else  facing a similar diagnosis, that's good.

And so I continue to blog-  sometimes  in spurts of entries every day, sometimes with no more than one or two blog posts a month, and sometimes there are stretches of several months where I don't blog at all. But I will try to be more disciplined and post  more often- even if it's just to post a  picture or two from the garden. Which may be what  happens tomorrow, since I'm scheduled for another four and a half hour chemo treatment in the morning and will spend much more time dozing off than typing once I get home..