Thursday and Damselflies

I do not know where the day went! I spent a large portion of yesterday visiting with the diabetes educator (six-month appointment) about how I have been assessing and streamlining my approach to managing the Type-2 diabetes. Afterwards, Al and I took care of the banking and the rest of the grocery shopping. On Tuesday, we only got the meat, which I cooked up and stashed in the refrigerator.

Today, I enjoyed spending a lot of time in the back yard with The Scampers. Also, helping Al with the workshop building by holding things up and together while he took screws out and put them back in, in different spots, getting the door ready for the final installation. At least it locks, now. two locks, one a deadbolt. Talking alarm systems, now, but I expect that won’t become an issue until after we have the electric installed and figure out what we’re going to move in there and where.

There was wind, but I still managed to get a few wildflower pictures. And of the Scampers, who waited on the back step for me to quit taking photographs and go inside to fetch their supper.

Tuesday Morning Photos

Some of the photographs that I took when the Scampers and I went outside after breakfast.

I got outside to exercise, later in the morning. Almost ready, now, to assemble lunch, not having been hungry for a mid-morning snack. Took note of some vitals at The Art of Disorder, making a concentration shift to cholesterol levels. The exercise affects both the cholesterol and the blood sugar levels. Now that I am “between” allergens and have an energy level again, I’ll be working on establishing exercise and sleep habits that will, hopefully, maintain in some form during the ragweed season.

A new week, new flowers

We’ve enjoyed a lot of rain showers, recently, which helped with keeping the flowerbeds watered, and also the grass seed that Al has added to the tracks made by the trucks and related equipment during the renovations the summer before last and the preparations for the wood-working shop that’s currently underway.

The rabbits are spending a lot of time in my wildflower garden before we get up, mornings. The Scampers enjoy the frantic races, first thing. Gives them an appetite for breakfast. I’ve increased the amount of food I give them, because they were losing weight.

This morning we got up early, so that I could have lab work done prior to my appointment this coming Wednesday. Just got a notice that the rest of the test results are waiting for me online. Suppose I should check those out. The new A1C and other misc. stuff are at The Art of Disorder.

Best wishes for the coming week!

Gardening and such

Last week got a bit hectic, comings and goings, rain, errands to run, and stuff to do. I do now have more flowers in my garden. Most of them are yellow and orange (sweet clover, dandelions, wallflowers and California poppies). I can now see tiny wild flax stems emerging, and I’m looking forward to some flowers developing within the next month or so.

These last four photographs are from Sunday’s backyard outing with the Scampers.

With the warmer weather, my energy level has gone down. Fortunately, so have the pollen levels. The tree pollen that bothers me is now out of season. I think I’m good, now, until ragweed becomes prevalent. (No trips to the ER, this spring!)

I have purchased copies of the poster-size photo montages that were created for my parents’ memorial services and hope to get frames for them. Not all to be hung up around the house, but finding a place to hang one at a time and rotate through the seven of them. I have looked through the book Writing to Heal the Soul. I decided that writing an occasional poem is/has been adequate and happens spontaneously…I think I’m good.

a pair of blue wild flax flowers from last year's garden
Blue Wild Flax

In the new garden plot

At last wildflowers are opening in the new garden plot. Most of what’s emerged, actually, is clover. Several different kinds. When I was a small child, I used to eat the sweet clover flowers. They really do taste sweet. California poppies are among my favorites, although they’re not great to photograph.

Last Friday, the Scampers finally got their summer haircuts. They’re looking really cool. Here are “before” and “after” photographs. And Thadd having a wonderful time rolling in the grass when we brought them home and let them out in the back yard.

I think that I’ve finally gotten my eating patterns squared away as I want them. I do forget to eat, more than I’m comfortable with. Trying to do better while not raising my blood sugar levels. Weight loss has slowed. Isn’t it such nice timing, our having to replace the bathroom scale when we did? The new scale shows the tenths of a pound! We can be really obsessive, now!

For tonight, assuming the rain holds off, I am planning to mix the latest batch of spent coffee grounds into the sandy dirt that contains little to no organic material (other than the seeds that I sowed, which did not germinate) along the south side of the garage. Then I am going to plant clumps of wild flax seeds with bricks on the downward slope to keep all of the water from running off and taking the seeds with it.

One of my husband’s ham radio buddies has come back into the area for a short visit with relatives, and they’re getting together for an evening out, whoever can make it. That will give me time for the planting procedures, assuming nothing comes along to interfere. Must check the radar before I get everything readied for gardening.

Later in the week, some of my husband’s family are coming over to help wrap the workshop building in with whatever it is that blocks the wind, once the inner and outer walls are up. Windows are ordered and a couple more things. Not getting ahead of what’s being used almost immediately. I keep thinking that June is the “rain” month around here and worrying that everything is going to either drown or blow away.

A quiet Thursday (with wind)

There was far too much wind, today, for Al to continue the shingling, and so he put together the framing for the interior wall of the workshop. I helped raise it, and we figured out where we want the wall positioned (how large each room should be) and where the door should be situated. He’s off, now, looking at door frames.

This has been, I now realize, a tough week for me. Internal adjustments, the most profound of which is becoming aware that I really do not have to take my mobile phone with me as I move around the house and yard. There will be no more telephone calls from hospice, hospital, care or independent living centers concerning decisions to be made about my parents. My siblings all have spouses and in-laws to respond. Their children are grown and are themselves having children. Even when/if something happens to my husband, I have a whole raft of in-laws and siblings, nieces and nephews to call upon. Who have demonstrated their willingness and ability to handle things.

Does that leave me alone, here, to grieve about one more thing? Or do I accept being cherished by those who know and love me? There is not another, comparable burden to pick up.

What brought this on? I woke up, this morning, with no thoughts about what must be done, but instead set about a normal routine that included putting on coffee to brew, feeding and guiding the puppies, deciding not to eat breakfast, washing last night’s dishes, and wandering out into the back yard to catch up on what Al was doing. I had not put my phone by my bed, last night, and this morning I plugged it in to recharge and left it in my sitting room. Didn’t think about it. Sometime during the week I set my phone to “Do Not Disturb”, and it’s still there. And I can leave it like that.

I took the camera outside with me and took some photographs. The blue flowers in the upper right corner. I am wondering what they are. At first I thought perhaps a variety of oxalis, but the leaves don’t look right.

We’ve another bird nest above the motion detector light. Sparrows have moved in again, after the first nest disintegrated in the winds, wet and late snow of this dampish spring. I hope that this nest holds together.

Sparrows Nest

Another day of rain

In lieu of wildflowers, which are only now beginning to grow in the new wildflower garden, I’ve taken photos of the chives by the back step. I enjoy having them just outside the back door, handy for cutting. I like them in soups, salads and scrambled eggs. I do still need to find good recipes for low-calorie/low carbohydrate/gluten-free soup. I will make it through the summer, but nothing’s better than a tasty clear soup in the wintertime.

I have, while pulling what dandelion plants I can reach out of the wildflower garden, noticed three new plants that appear to be flax. I am looking forward to wild flax in order to take photographs, again, and I’ve been worried that they won’t “take” in the new spot. I am not sure what the sun exposure will be, since we didn’t pick the plot (50 sq. ft.) until late in the summer or early autumn. Too, the willow tree across the back fence has dropped some larger branches, and we had to remove one of the four stands of cotoneaster bushes, those closest to the back fence on the southwest end of the yard.

There was precipitation, this morning, but the afternoon winds have dried the grass enough for Al to mow the yard. He’s finished the front and sides, and is now working on the back. Before that, he cleared out the project-in-process enough that he can build the interior wall when it’s too wet for shingling. Looks like tomorrow will include shingling.

In the meanwhile, I also took pictures of the peony leaves. The new plants, erupting from the middle of the plot we staked out (to protect them, early and now emerging, from the lawnmower), had raindrops on their leaves. I love the colors of them when they are youngish.

I am going through stacks of books and papers that have accumulated beside my chair since my father died. Time to start putting things back into order, again. Since inheriting, after giving away my set to a nephew and his family, the family’s Great Books of the Western World, along with copies of all of the Great Ideas Today yearbooks (with duplicates for the years when both I and my parents were buying them), I am once again short of shelf space. I do not know what I would have done if I hadn’t given away/thrown out over five hundred hardcover/paperback books with last year’s Spring Clean-up Week discards.

Nonetheless, I will keep at this thing. Neither of us wants to go into older age with closets or cardboard boxes to go through when it actually will be too much work, rather than now, when it just feels like it is. I have new artwork to put on the walls, however, when I get to the framer’s. I look forward to that.

A not rainy day

The winds and rain bypassed us, today, although the temperature was not very high. Sixties (F).

Much time was spent in finishing preparations for beginning to shingle the workshop roof. A kind (young) neighbor volunteered his help in carrying the shingle bundles, which are quite heavy. I helped to lay down the starter stuff. I do not like balancing at the top of a ladder, but I managed to get up there and do my part for both the front and back sides of the roof.

Otherwise, I have exercised, gotten a letter out to a friend, although I did not do a proper closure or signature, because the mail carrier was approaching earlier than I had expected. I swept the front sitting room and the kitchen. With all of the disruption of the ground over the past few years, we have a lot of dirt, and the grass is not growing back as fast as we would have hoped. The White Campions et al. are doing well, however. Better than the thistles, at this point! Adding the dry to the dirt, I feel like I’m having to sweep out gravel, a couple of times a day. If I leave it for a day, it’s dust, gravel, and dog hair. Much prefer damp mopping the whole thing with frequent rinsing of the mop head.

Generally, everything is proceeding splendidly, however. Looking forward to running errands in a little while and coming back with more protein. I’ve lettuce and asparagus, but no meat, fish, or poultry.

Looking forward to the return of rain and some time to laze around.

The Morning After

There were wind gusts, yesterday and last night. And for some days previous. And so we are behind on the workshop. The next step is putting down the tar paper, which will blow away, sure as anything. We are hoping for a better day for the work on Friday, since there is rain in the forecast after that. I did have the chance to get out with the camera, though.

On Wednesday, we took care of some chores: banking and grocery shopping. My meal planning is improving, and I was able to put together complete meals!

 
The wind was hard on the flowers, also. Lots of dandelion clocks around the yard. The White Campion has gotten out and about, thanks to the rainy days, but I’m not sure what is coming up in the wildflower garden. There has been enough wind to carry lots of unplanned for seed. Stuff’s coming up all over the place. The only things I am certain must be pulled out, besides the White Campion, are the dandelions and thistles. Those I recognize. The tulips are windblown and fading fast. I think there are a few left to mature and bloom, if we get some more good weather in here.

I think I am done being awake, again, and so am going to try for at least six more hours of sleep.