And Spring Slips into Summer

Foamflower, hostas, and a stunted Japanese maple frame an angel bought years and years ago and then forgotten in the garden behind the garage. Now she has center stage in the main shade garden.
Foamflower, hostas, and a stunted Japanese maple frame an angel bought years and years ago and then forgotten in the garden behind the garage. Now she has center stage in the main shade garden.

Have you ever told yourself you’d change and then actually done it? This weekend I really lived my new “to-be list” philosophy. I did do a lot, but I never made a list of things to accomplish and then checked it off, item by item. With everything I did, I felt no rush, no pressing need to do it now, no guilt in the doing or the not doing.

I spent time with my son at Van Atta’s Greenhouse and Nursery, I mowed and transplanted and weeded, I filled a dozen or more pots with annuals, I managed to keep the kitchen pretty clean. Saturday morning, Zach and I were talking about finally putting in a new fire pit sometime this summer. By afternoon, it was there! Suddenly we were roasting hot dogs and marshmallows in the backyard.

On Monday, the boy and I went downtown to visit the various war memorials and monuments and statues, and to check out the “fuzzy” Capitol building (the dome is currently covered with scaffolding as they do maintenance of some sort). We were practically the only ones downtown. We talked of war and sacrifice and men and women who served. We talked about how our state became the Arsenal of Democracy, turning auto factories into factories that made munitions and tanks and Army vehicles; how women built the machinery and the ammunition that finally subjugated the axis powers in WWII; how some wars must be fought and some do not make a lot of sense; how some people come home heroes, some come home to sneers and derision, and some never come home at all. We talked about men in our family who fought and those whose number never came up.

The wind was gusting and it started to rain on us. By the time we were home again the sun was out. We watched Charlotte’s Web for the second time in two days, and now the boy is a spider (with just four legs) who gives spider hugs and spider kisses and makes his webs out of the pile of dirty laundry his father gathered at the bottom of the stairs.

In the coming days we will celebrate the boy’s seventh birthday, his class will take a field trip to the zoo, we’ll take him to his first Brandi Carlile concert (shh–it’s a surprise), he’ll have a birthday party at the park with his friends, and we’ll celebrate with some family the next day.

May is always a big month here.

But I’m not sweating it. I’m loving every minute of it.

A Finished Mosaic and Thoughts of Spring

Grout, sealer, a bit of time, and voila!


The rabbit table is done. I’ve finally tidied up the sunroom after months of dishevelment.


Of course, I didn’t actually get the table in this picture. You can just see where it is on the right between the settee and the chair. It feels good to get stuff in order. It’s one of the things I love about this time of year– sucking up cobwebs with the vacuum hose, dusting off window ledges, raking leaves from flowerbeds. Sending the grime of the winter away and inviting in the beauty of sun and blue sky and everything that speaks of spring.

Pet Practicalities

birdsMy 15-year-old shepherd mix Sasha is back on prednisone for a cough and on some pain med to see if it helps her mobility with her weakening back legs. As we think about the fact that this will probably be her last year, my husband and I have been discussing whether or not to get perhaps a parakeet or cockatiel so we will not be left petless when the time comes, now that our cat has gone on to another home.

Beyond the obvious benefit to my allergic son, not having a cat in the house has made more than a few things much better. Mainly, I can now lay out fabric on my sewing table and not have it become encased in a layer of fine cat fur when it is mistaken as a good place to take a nap. A close second this time of year is the fact that I will be able to start vegetable seeds in the house and will not come into the sunroom one day to find that all of my baby plants have been beheaded, half-digested, and then regurgitated in a yellow puddle on the floor. I’m also anticipating the possibilities of cut flowers all summer long.

A contained, non-furry pet who could be brought to a friend’s house when we’re out of town is far preferable to us at this point in life than another dog, even if it were smaller and less sheddy. Non-free-ranging animals are easier in some ways.

What do you think? Anyone had a bird as a pet before? What was your favorite (or least favorite) pet?

Mosaic Madness…and an Animated Gif

It seems I have gotten myself on a regular crafting schedule this year. I recently finished a baby quilt. Now I’m closing in on another project. Last night I managed to finish getting the tiles for my rabbit mosaic glued to my dumpster table.


I used four different greens. I did not measure or plan anything as I went along in this project. And this is what was left of my green tiles at the end.


Essentially one tile, some shards, and some dust. That’s what I call lucky. And that’s generally how I do crafts — kind of a seat-of-your-pants philosophy that has rarely failed me.

Here’s the table now, ready for grout.


I’ll grout it next week if I can find the time.

And since everyone loves animated gifs…