Monday, June 24, 2013

Growing things

It's summer and everything is growing.  It's hard to keep up.  :-)

Grands are growing fast.  Five and Batman boogie-ing on the beach.

Stardust looks very grown-up on her first day of camp.

The Viking is 37 weeks-old  already.  Wow.

The juvenile bluebirds hanging out at the feeder.  It hasn't been too awfully hot so I have some hope there will be a second brood this year.  :-)

Also growing are all kinds of summer flora.  We've attacked many of the weeds, poison ivy, and persimmon sprouts, with varying degrees of success.  Happily, there are "good things" growing as well.  :-)

There is even an azalea blooming!  Crazy.

A few days ago the view across the pond changed.

Yep.  The last willow tree keeled over during the night.  It looked healthy enough but now it's broken it's easy to see it was a hotbed of termite activity.  Too bad.

I've been going out early in the mornings before I take my shower, to putz in the gardens while it's "still cool."  Heh.

We have a pepper!  It's supposed to be red so I guess I just have to leave it until it turns color.


A jalapeno.

Lots of tomatoes.

Some stuff is more successful than others.  We are thinking we will add to the frames next year to make the gardens deeper.

Two bags of compost added to this flower garden showed results in just a couple of days!

I used to be able to garden all day long....and I did.  Up north that is.  Here it's just too hot.  Look at how red my face and neck are.  I get scary red sometimes.  And this is before 10am!

On Saturday morning while it was still coolish I dragged The Tramp out front to help me mulch the flower beds.  A great improvement.

Since there was no sun, the dogs were able to lounge on the porch watching the neighborhood and enjoying a rawhide chew.

We also spent part of both Saturday and Sunday cleaning the garage.  The junk in there seems to grow and multiply of it's own accord!  It rained off and on while we worked and you can see the fresh brown water spreading across the pond, which is already very brown from all the previous rain storms.

We had cabinets lined up against this wall and decided we could use the space more efficiently.  The bicycles are now hanging instead of leaning here and there always in the way, and all the garden tools are neatly hung rather than leaning willy nilly in the corners.  Yay!  Cleaning implements are better stored as well.  Vacuum cleaners have a home and The Tramp and Sailor Son's boots are no longer a hazard.  :-)

The "pantry" cabinets are now backed up against the shelving units in the center of the garage.  We cleaned them out, washed the interiors, threw away old canned goods and organized what was left.  The second cabinet is overflow Tupperware, Pyrex, baking pans and such. We have a big box for the thrift shop now.  The floor is swept too.  Lots of spiders but only one dead snake thank goodness!  Still a bit more to do on this side and next weekend we tackle the shelving and "workshop" in the other bay.  I'd certainly like to sweep and vacuum out any more spidery and snaky things....shudder.....and The Tramp is anxious to do more purging.

On Friday Mom and I sold raffle tickets for the guild's quilt at the Sewing and Quilt Expo at the Raleigh Convention Center.  Isn't it a gorgeous quilt.

Plenty of vendors to keep a sewer busy all day!

We all oohed and aahed over this quilt covered Volvo.  What a great way to advertise a quilt show!

And speaking of growing things.  My quilt blocks have grown into this.

And today it grew borders!  Woot!  I love it.  And it's one UFO crossed off my challenge list.  :-)

Thursday, June 13, 2013


On Tuesday morning I hosted one of my quilting bees at the house.  We had a great time.  Mom showed off the baby wall hanging she just finished.  I always have the camera with me and then I forget to use it, so that's the only photo I took.  Crazy, I know.

The "square foot" gardens are still growing things.  Some stuff grows more happily than others.  It feels like a Big Experiment.  Yesterday, I was excited to serve our first cucumber of the season.  I have a feeling we will have the opportunity to be very tired of them before the summer ends.  :-)

It's too hot for lettuce now and none of the tomatoes have ripened yet, but at least something is from our own little plot.

This dark photo is of Charlie's covered cage.  He completely surprised me yesterday by saying "goodnight" as I covered him up!

Outdoors the bluebirds have built a second nest and there are four eggs.  They do this every year but nothing ever comes of it.  I suspect it just gets too hot.  The heat index was 100F today so I might be right.  We should put up another box in a shadier spot.

Today was a Do Things At Home Day.  This morning I said how about now and picked up the annoying and large pile of fabric scraps off the floor from in front of The Tramp's desk.  The white basket had long ago overflowed and disappeared from sight, and walking and vacuuming around the pile was getting more and more say nothing of how much dog hair was probably mixing in!  I figured I'd better do something about it before it started to compost.  :-p

My plan is to one day make the Omigosh! quilt (third picture down in that link).  To that end I need to cut masses of 1" strips.   So here is the start of that project bin.

I tossed other size strips into their appropriate bins.

Also in the scrap pile was a whole lot of end-cuts from the mitered borders of t-shirt quilts.  I ironed and stacked the pieces for future use and need to get the right sized bin so they don't end up in a wrinkled heap again.

Mid-afternoon the emergency weather radio started blaring watches and warnings.  It was still sunny and hot here.

But it didn't take long for the weather to arrive from the west (from behind the house).  Watching out the front window it was sort of like someone pulling a blanket over the house.

Charlie spent most of the day carrying on louder than usual.  He was clearly unsettled by something. I wonder if it was the weather?

The rains came.

And the wind blew.  The trees were whipping madly and we quickly retreated inside.

Thunder rolled and we could hear sirens off and on.  When the rain stopped the temperature had dropped over 20F (!) and mist rose from the pond for a long time.

The birds rushed back to the feeders like it was going to be their last meal.  Lots of house finches,  mourning doves, confused cardinals in various stages of juvenility, woodpeckers, the bluebirds and their young brood and a host of others.....including the squirrel family.

Over the last couple of hours we've discovered how fortunate we are.  Various of The Tramp's co-workers have reported that they are dealing with power outages and downed trees.  There is news of widespread damage.  Lots of amazing images too.

And lastly.  Just in case you were wondering if dogs like Greek yogurt....

Whoops!  They moved.  All three of them had their noses and tongues shoved in that little container at the same time.

Yes Ivy, I'm taking your picture.  :-)