Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Sunshine and fruit

A few days of sunshine and the strawberries have sweetened up. I am freezing bags of the delicious fruit. I pick early in the morning before it gets hot and throw over the fence the rotting ones. The worst are the ones that look perfect until I pull them and all their overripe guts squish into my hand. Eeeeee! The birds seem to be leaving my crop alone, perhaps because I send them so many onto the short lawn of the park. So far I haven't hit any passersby. The blueberries are darkening, and the raspberries are beginning to ripen. I eat a few every morning. Soon I'll have enough to freeze bags of them too. For some reason the edible honeysuckle is not producing anything this year. I'll have a good blackberry crop. Last year I managed to burn all the little schizandra berries I tried to dry. We'll see how this year goes. Of course, the birds got all the cherries again. Why do I try to grow them? So far, the plums and apples look good. The black currant is weighted down with fruit. The rattail radish is growing all over with thousands of the radishy seedpods. I pull them up to cover the blueberries to hide them from the birds. But what everybody stops to look at are the pink and yellow and red california poppies carpeting the orchard. Oh, and I need to check on the goji berry to see if it survived the winter.
Today I pulled up a diminishing number of weeds at my wookie's house, and then drove to Dad's and watered his garden. Most things are looking good.
Now I need to straighten out the basement. Two married kids and their kids and a single son are coming to spend the fourth of July with us.
Tomorrow will be our 38th wedding anniversary. We are going to Mongolian BBQ, my favorite. I could eat there every night.  I have to pick what I can chew, which is very little now that I have braces.  For supper tonight I made a canned garbanzo with pureed frozen mixed vegetables and goat cheese soup.

Friday, June 25, 2010


Day before yesterday I battled blackberry (which fights back viciously) at my dad's house. Yesterday I pulled weeds for the church which is planning a large neighborhood 4th of July party and outreach. Today I pulled weeds and pruned and gave advice at my yard while best beloved and I worked on a small patio under the four-way trellis and in the shade of the mimosa tree. I have two pretty plastic Adirondack chairs to go there.
Summer has arrived and the afternoons are grueling hot for me. I never did like hot weather and direct sunlight on my skin feels uncomfortable, but apparently one of the medications I take increase my sensitivity to heat to a ridiculous degree. My favorite temperature is 64 Fahrenheit. For working hard, I prefer the low fifties.

Monday, June 21, 2010

new bird feeders for Dad

Last week the oddest thing happened: my dad gave me money. Background: his main birdfeeder broke. And the suet feeder cannot keep out the gray squirrels. He spends hours every day on the back deck watching the birds. We couldn't find in the phone book any business that advertised selling bird feeders and the stores he knows sell only wimpy birdfeeders that only feed squirrels. So I say I'll drive into town and look. He gave me 160 dollars and asked me to get a bird feeder that's less than 150 and squirrel resistant. I found two metal bird feeders at the second place I stopped for a little over 60. So I gave him the change, filled both feeders, and set them up. Then Dad handed the change back to me, and when I asked why, he said it was gas money.What can you do? I thanked him. I am still startled. He has never given me money during the two decades I've driven up once a week to visit Mom, and when she died, to look in at him. Something has changed.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

More books

I've read too many books to mention them all. I just finished Midnight In The Garden Of Good And Evil by John Berendt--(Interesting--how do people live that way?) The Secret Supper by Javier Sierra--(Boring- but as I examine The Last Supper, I do wonder why John who is shown with no beard to represent his youth also has no shoulder? And why is the bread thrown all over the table?) And Kingdoms Of The Wall by Robert Silverberg which was so interesting and then ended with the moral that since there are no gods, we need to do science. I am now reading God's Battalions by Stark, and next will be King Leopold's Ghost by Hochschild. I hope I can handle the horror of what Belgium did to the people of the Congo.
Last week, Best-beloved and I went to movies two days in a row. We went to see the Prince of Persia because it looked like it would be fun, and it was, with great parkour, special effects, costumes, fighting, explosions etc., and yet I could not make myself care about the beautiful characters and I dozed off near the end. The next day we went to see Babies, a documentary following the birth and lives of four babies, one each in Mongolia, Africa (Namibia?), Tokyo, and San Francisco. It was way too short. The audience joined me in laughing or gasping.
My hairy hairless Chinese Crested/Italian Grayhound is poking me as I type. She's as bad as a two-year-old in wanting attention.
Perhaps because of the constant rain this year, the strawberries in my yard are not the essence of delicious as they are most years. Should I bother to pick them? The weeds I pull and lay on the ground keep re-rooting instead of decomposing and returning to the dirt what they took out as I work to turn my dirt into soil.
Dad's yard is beginning to look spiffy. No one will think the property is abandoned now. It is nearing his wedding anniversary. He said that she wasn't supposed to go first. Yeah, none of us wanted her to go when she did. Mom was kind to everybody. I miss our sending each other interesting articles. Did Dad say Mom has been gone for seven years? That can't be right. And has it been ten years since my husband fell off the roof and crushed his feet and lower leg bones? I remember the events too well for them to have been that long ago.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Odd dreams

Lately in my dreams I am continuing to read the book I have set aside, sometimes even editing the wording until it sounds right, and reading so far that when I wake up I cannot tell whether what I remember of the book is what I actually read or what I made up in the dream.