The end of the week and gardening

The reports of the Nile Virus on the news broadcasts sounded daunting. Since I can’t use insect repellents or insecticides, I may be spending more time indoors than I had planned on, timing my gardening around pest-free conditions. I expect that may involve being out on a breezy, dry day in long skirts/long-sleeve shirt and work gloves. I still have to improve the soil along the front and sides of the house, where nothing grows, now, but for the tulips in the spring. I’ve the “aged” used coffee grounds and the peat moss. I have only to dig out half a foot of soil all the way around (in sections), mix the barren dirt with the additives, and smooth it out, again. Then I can water the soil and tamp down the seeds. I’ve only the annual flax seeds, and only two ounces of those, and so I may have to order more for summer and autumn blooming.

The new garden is in shade more than I’d planned on, by the backyard fence. It catches tree and house shadows before 9:00 a.m. and late in the afternoon until dark. So, I must pick wildflower mixtures next year that fit better with that.

Transitions & Scampers

The Scampers are providing much amusement, but they are slow to learn what they may and may not do. I am sneaking in a bit of blogging time before the household awakes. Life has been harried.

My mother’s last remaining sibling died on the 26th, and we have decided not to tell her. Mother is living in the past and only intermittently in sync with the framework of her day-to-day life. My father, faced with the prospect of spending the winter alone at the house, has contracted for an assisted living apartment. In preparation, he’s gotten his flu vaccination. As I understand it, one of my brothers will be living in and taking care of the house in Father’s absence. My brother did tell our mother about Father’s move, which did upset her.

My exercise bike is sidelined for the winter months, and my husband has gotten me an inexpensive elliptical machine, which is currently set up in the living room. It is more difficult to use; I suppose that is the point of it. I still have not started using the hand weights. I did sign up for a paid Hulu account, again, thinking that I can use the hand weights while watching shows on my schedule.

My husband and I are conservative and liberal, respectively, and working to maintain a calm, respectful environment. On local issues and nonpolitical offices on the local and state levels, we are pretty much in accord, and so we have joint celebrations in the midst of the broader chaos.

I think I can get in another hour’s sleep, now, if I don’t make any noise. 😀

 

 

Changes No Longer Pending

My garden will be in a new section of the back yard, next year, and so I will have no more flower photographs from my back yard, this fall. Al has decided to build a workshop that will impinge on the garden and also some of the area that holds my gazebo. I do wonder what that will do to the pattern of snowdrifts, come winter.

I thought to share a few of the photographs that I took yesterday. The puppies are nine months old, now. They’ve had their first trip to the groomer’s, and we are late on getting them in for a second cut.

My mother entered a nursing home under hospice care, last week, and the first care planning meeting is to be next week or the week after. Between the ER, hospital stay and move to the nursing home, along with Al’s cataract surgeries and the permit for Al’s hobby outbuilding, there has been more excitement than I’m comfortable with.

On a brighter note, the pollen index has sunk much more rapidly than I had expected, and I am doing well with breathing. I am pedaling the exercise bike more consistently and with more tension, so that my muscles have more resistance. Thought that would never happen!

The construction folks are not to begin work before 8 o’clock, but I expect that I should now get up to feed and “out” the puppies, before any excitement begins. We didn’t find out until late yesterday afternoon that the work would be done before the end of the week. Weather permitting. And so I also have to get to my appointment for a haircut (rescheduled from the first of the month because of changes in Al’s surgery schedule) and visit with my mother in the nursing home afterwards. Al is dropping me off there, and then returning home to interface with the construction folks.

I am not good at being around people for extended time periods. Argh!

A new week . . .

Some flower art from photographs that I took yesterday and today.

I’m still getting back on track from my husband’s long weekend away. There is also a family gathering of folks from his father’s side of the family, next weekend, which I hate to miss, but spending six hours in the car with puppies in their kennel in back, even three hours each way, seems a bit much during allergy season. I expect to stay home and puppy sit.

The weather has been generally cool and comfortable, and I still am getting out into the gazebo to use the exercise bike most days. On Tuesday, 4.5 miles.

Monday Flower Art

Monday was a good day, here. Samantha is now allowed in the back yard without a leash, but still accompanied by one of us. The bunnies haven’t made an appearance for a couple of days, now. Last spotted, they had moved to a protected spot under the gazebo.

Samantha without a leash
Sam and Flea

I am still having trouble breathing, and so have limited my activities. I discovered when I went outside to photograph flowers, that I have much more difficulty arising from a kneeling position. I must get try again to use the exercise bike, I think.

Second Sight

I have written a poem to Mara Eastern’s Poetry 101 Rehab prompt: Second. “Second Sight” – http://t.co/z8RkMQUes0

I came into it late, and so I am hoping to catch up, this weekend, on the prompts that I missed at the beginning.

Also, Samantha and I went out into the back yard, this afternoon, and took photographs of the leaves on the ground. It’s really been too chilly to go out and rake them up. New leaves are coming out on the Cotoneasters, now, in spite of the cold.

last fall's leaves beneath the Cotoneaster bushes
Fallen Leaves and New Grass

 
The small Cotoneaster bush on the west end of the fence line has lost the whole sun-facing side. Most of the branches that are in sunlight and wind for most of the day have not leafed out. I will need Al’s help to saw them off.