Sunday, January 9, 2022

A Happy New Year To You!


Warm 75 Degree Weather New Years Day -

Rains Second Day and Temperatures Plummeting -

Cumberland Rosemary

Winter Savory

Then First Moist Snowfall of 3 Inches -

It sifts from Leaden Sieves

     ~ Emily Dickinson

It sifts from Leaden Sieves -
It powders all the Wood.
It fills with Alabaster Wool
The Wrinkles of the Road -

It makes an even Face
Of Mountain, and of Plain -
Unbroken Forehead from the East
Unto the East again -

It reaches to the Fence -
It wraps it Rail by Rail
Till it is lost in Fleeces -
It deals Celestial Vail

To Stump, and Stack - and Stem -
A Summer’s empty Room -
Acres of Joints, where Harvests were,
Recordless, but for them -

It Ruffles Wrists of Posts
As Ankles of a Queen -
Then stills it’s Artisans - like Ghosts -
Denying they have been -

First Snowfall Melted and Dry for Two Days -
Second Snowfall Lasting 7 Hours with 6 Inches of Snow 

Rabbit Tracks and Escape Under Gate

Temperature Highs in Twenties and Lows in Teens for Two Days

Second Day of Freezing with the Sun's Rays Causing Some Melting
Slushy Streets Re-Froze After Sunset  

Mourning Doves Taking Shelter on the Front Porch

A quiet time in the late evening, and all I am able to accomplish so far is a series of sighs, yawns and staring that always ends up looking at this keyboard that lays silent.  So…… how’s the weather in your neighborhood?
Winter has already been a rollercoaster ride of ups and downs…sandals, then mud shoes, then snow boots, then repeat.  Although I’m not fond of my front gardens, they look rather amazing with all the trees and shrubs in such a small space.  Branches have been trimmed back from the driveway and house this early winter giving a more open experience for a few years.
Looking out the back bedroom window demands a belief that all will come together in the future when the Summersweet mature and whatever I plant in the Persimmon’s empty space will outshine it. A native evergreen shrub that knows how to stay within the boundaries of the space and produce fruit or berries would be fantastic, but that’s a feat I can only hope to figure out by spring.

With my nasal surgery done, I have an appointment with a general neurologist to see if he can shine any light on my dizziness and neuropathy problems.  I have been told by a few people who should know, that it will be unlikely any neurologist will be able to make that happen :(  We shall see.

I spent this last year watching all the episodes for years 2020 and 2021 on Britbox of Gardeners’ World with Monty Don.  He has a personality that draws you into his world of gardening big time, but when I watch him in his own gardens, I’m sure I would have no life and feel like death warmed over if I gardened as he does.

Taking out plants just past their prime time to be replaced by plants just reaching their prime time throughout the growing season seems like insanity to me, and is probably why my laments of my own gardens looking like has-beens part of the growing season is so very real.  I take out nothing.

I’m greenhouse free, and cats roam my house munching on greens, so in my reality world I purchase plants started by someone else.  I do find satisfaction growing my own vegetables totally by seed planted directly in the raised beds.  It’s an amazing feeling growing from scratch what one puts on the table.

Dustin was taken to emergency care December 29th and diagnosed with a severe bladder infection, which wasn't diagnosed by his regular veterinary clinic even though he was displaying the symptoms at the time of his yearly checkup.

All paperwork filled out on my least 20 pages of never ending questions, so I was a slight wreck when I finally finished, and we could actually drive to our destination.  Dustin has finished the last pain relief pill and will finish the other medication soon.  He appears to be alright, but we will know for sure next week.

Life is quiet here for me.  The Christmas decorations probably will come down sometime between now and spring, and in the meantime I will enjoy them as if it’s still Christmas.  Vic and I are planning the vegetable gardens, and we will be planting seeds together.  Vic isn’t a gardener.  He calls himself The Destroyer when he helps in the yard.  This may prove to be an interesting year with the vegetables.

Chilling Out

Take care this New Year.

This post is linked to:
although my blooms are still underground.

Saturday, December 11, 2021

Gathering at the fireplace for some light conversation ~

To have a warm day squeezed into a rash of cold ones is a miracle these days.  I walked my gardens yesterday in short sleeves, when we had that miracle the first week of December.  An extraordinary day in an ordinary way, since occasional rain showers have not played well with the colorful carpet of leaf fall, turning it all a bit on the drab side of crispy to mushy.

To be alone in this loneliness gives one an overwhelming feeling of sadness, until footsteps are heard from behind.  Looking around, the neighboring oak leaves drifting on the breeze fall in light ghostly footsteps to follow the gardener.  A squirrel begins its lamenting eerie cries, and a fat robin looks at its reflection in the still water of the birdbath and takes a sip.

It is then this gardener remembers the most prized treasures in this lonely landscape are not only the ones that one may see, but also the ones of sounds and smells that create feelings of nostalgia of all things past, and anticipation of all things yet to come.

That is when this garden comes to life in the mind of this gardener in the season of frosty winter and sleeping landscapes.

One of the ash tree seed dams in pathway after rain storm

* Where the Wild Ones Are *

Walking the Dog.
I think Vic's baggy jeans are history after he viewed this shot.

Wellness:  I’ve scheduled appointments to set myself up for a lousy or fortunate end of the year, depending on how I wish to take it all in.  I received most of my surgery information today.  Pre-op’s a cinch.  Post-op sounds like a visit to the chambers of hell.  I called my sister to calm myself down a bit.

I’m having a bone spur removed from the back area of my right nostril, so I may breath normal, whatever that is; and also a hole between the two nostrils will hopefully be closed up.  I always have a need to know, so upon asking my doctor what causes a hole like that, he just said most likely drugs.  So what's the least likely, I inquired.

The most wonderful time of the year will come, and bid farewell while I'm re-taping new gauze across my nostrils every hour and digging into my collection of  prescribed pain killers, blood clotting products and antiseptic ointment.

Snow Men and Snow Ladies 

A little orphan I acquired bent up and missing a few coal buttons.
I love it. 


There was a time when I could actually put together something
 that only started out as a thought in my mind;
you know, creativity.
Of that creativity, I still have four wreaths I've kept as my favorites.
The last attempt, at creating a new wreath, was met with disaster.
Put together, take apart...put together, take apart...put together, take apart...
It was a beauty in my eyes, but oh so dark dark dark, like funeral material.
I eventually had to give it up to lower my stress level :'(
It became Goodwill material, 
as my husband hardly ever throws anything away.

The book favorite.

Christmas ornaments from when we would set up a Christmas tree

More ornaments from the Christmas tree days

My first wreath.
First year in Tennessee, Vic's employer gave us a huge canister
 of cookies for Christmas.
On a whim, I wired the lid to a grapevine wreath form, 
and a wreath was formed around it.
It always hangs above the Livingroom fireplace at Christmas.

I've been deleting the rotten beginnings of this story so many times, I'm beginning to believe Christmas just isn't in me anymore.  Yes, I managed to push myself into decorating yet another year hoping to create that feeling of the euphoria this season ought to bring, but instead I feel nothing special...just another day another day another day. 

So, what to write...

Not again...

Who needs to write when one has toys!

I'm innocent...innocent, innocent, innocent, I tell you!!!
I get blamed for everything!

Mommy found my hiding place!
Get that camera out of my face!

Did you hear that psycho calico coming down the hallway?!?

Charlotte’s been rushing at the opening gate to escape her imprisonment from my studio, so yesterday we let her break free of her bondage for the day.  Lacey promptly kicked the living daylights out her leaving quite a few chunks of grey fur at the crime scene.  Of course, none of this would happen if the grey one stood her ground, but when she turns to run, that calico is after her like a heat seeking missile.

So much drama :’(  Now my days are spent encouraging that calico to move along out of her stakeout areas into more neutral territories, and listening for that thumping sound of Lacey winning another boxing match with claws extended.  Lacey NO!!!  Lacey NO!!!  Lacey NONONO!!!  My favorite yelling phrase.

Funny how it brings back memories of that first Christmas with Charlotte.  Vic was overseas, so it was just me and my household of pets…a quiet but loving time.  Sometimes when I look back, I say it was the year I had no life.  Of course, I really did have a life…just not the one I had in mind for myself.

The year was literally spent domesticating two feral adult cats and five hissing feisty kittens, through freezing cold, then sickness, then wellness exams and shots, then learning to play with interactive toys with me, then finding forever homes for the kittens and our home for Charlotte and Austin.  It was an overwhelmingly stressful year, but it finished out so beautifully.

Looking back to the Christmas when I wrote about Charlotte's life, I read – “She laid on the couch curled up with her brother as the furnace kept the room nice and warm.  A terrier sat by the fireplace, and a kitten the age of her own hide in the tall cat tree; while the not so nice one laid on her persons lap and the last one was under a bed.”

If one knows cats…anything can go wrong at any time, and that not so nice one a few months later became Charlotte's tormenting bully, and my studio room was gated to create a sanctuary for her.  Yesterday hence, the gate is now left open during the day and closed after dinner giving her an evening of safety and relaxation.  Believe me, Lacey is a full time job trying to create some tolerance in her.

In a household where the husband doesn't cook well on his own without help, it will be a quiet Christmas dinner from Marie Callender of Steak & Roasted Potatoes, and Lattice Apple Pie.  We wish you all  a lovely season that brings a smile to your face and happiness in your heart.

With love ~

Yvonne & Vic
Charlotte & Austin

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