Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Lessons from my garden

I needed a breather today from all the seriousness in my life right now. Just a minute to catch my breath and clear my my mind. 

Here's a quick update...
My dad is still hanging in there.
My mom is undergoing more procedures 
And surprisingly I am doing well in my classes (My class average is 2 A's and 3 B's)

The weather has been odd for this time of year for Ohio. Ok-- let me modify that by saying the entire spring, summer and NOW fall season has been odd for Ohio...We have had temps down in the 30's...the 30's!! much so I had to turn my furnace on already. Wonder what The Old Farmers Almanc has predicted for this winter?

Anyhoo, I decided to take a quick walk around the garden, jotted some notes in my journal because next weekend--weather be damned--I am doing a major overhaul of the perennial beds. I have the unenviable task of moving--well everything. The plants have overgrown their beds, some beds are aesthetically unbalanced and almost all of the plants need divided.

I  grabbed  my camera and took a walk. 

My roses are sputtering along and I captured these two lovely blooms.

I have absolutely no ideal what this is growing the flower pot!

The last lonely Zinnia, still standing tall.

Then I went past the Blue Liriope not paying much attention. Then a small movement caught my eye.

After my excursion-no matter how short-I found the tension had left my shoulders and I was smiling. 

And I think my garden gave me a great lesson..
1.  There is beauty all around us.
2. Sometimes life will give you surprises. 
3.Always stand tall
4. Take time to appreciate the little things.

Have a great rest of the week y'all!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

I found my missing stash...

...of seeds. 

WHAT did you think I was referring to? hmmmm Maybe some of you are little more back to nature than I thought....
I KNEW I had tons of Marigold seeds. And some other stuff. Lots of other stuff...

I also found my bag of Gladiola (Gladioli? Gladiolus?) bulbs that I had put up so I could plant this fall (then I promptly forgot about them). Until I was clearing stuff of the coat rack and saw these poor things desperately sprouting. I have no ideal when I will have time to plant these bulbs. 

And my garden is completely overgrown now. Time to cut it down, roto-til, bring some manure in (I guess we know where the phrase shoveling shit came from, haha) and put a layer of straw down. I think I need to let the patch lie fallow over the winter.

And I really wanted to get some fruit trees planted this fall. Between school and staying with my Dad who is in hospice I just don't know what I am going to get done in terms of the garden. I am not beyond having my daughter play the daddy's girl card to sucker er I mean enlist the Hubbs to help. I swear all the kid has to do is bat those baby blues and say "Daaaaddeee" and he caves. She plays him like a well tuned violin.  I will use this to my advantage, muwahahhaa.

Good thing he doesn't read my blog....

Friday, September 14, 2012

Creepers Peepers

No this isn't a halloween post. This is all about how when sitting at my pseudo desk (aka the dining table) I was feeling a little skeeved out. Like somebody's watching me. 

 Not that I do anything interesting enough to be watched but I was feeling a tad vulnerable.  My dining room is the main entry on to the house. It is the side my neighbor (on the south side of me) uses because it is closest to her house, it where the mail and deliveries are made. It is also where strangers, sales  people and preaching folks come to knock. Pretty much I know if someone comes to that door it ain't family.  Like I said I was feeling a little exposed.

Boy I sure do need to paint the house, door and clean my windows

This is the view through the little windows on the door, into my dining room --where I sit and do my homework.

Kinda creepy right? I made it a super easy fix for privacy using scrapbook paper cut to fit the windows.

I even made a peep hole on the middle window.. This looks like crazy, googly eyes staring back.

It isn't my perfect or forever fix, but it work for now and I don't feel so paranoid! I do know when I get my brand new door the glass had best be frosted or have shades because I don't want to feel like I am in a fishbowl!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Welcome to the cat house

I am beginning to feel a little like the crazy cat-lady. Every time I turned around there was a cat in my way, on something, or in something. Case in point...

Cat #1

This is Wussie-Cat. When I first found her she was a several weeks old kitten  hiding behind a straw bale in a former coworker's barn. Her name is appropriate because she is afraid of everything! The funniest thing she ever did to live up to her name was when she came face to face with a large bull frog. She hissed and arched her back. Well the frog decided to puff himself out. They did this 2 or 3 times. However when the frog  raised up on his back legs and let out a loud croak --she completely freaked out! We nearly wet ourselves from laughing. Had we videotaped and submitted this to America's home videos- we would have won some kind of prize. I am pretty sure she is senile. I know she is partially deaf and blind. But given the fact she is 18 years old  you will have that. Today I caught her trying  to  climb  up the aluminum siding to get to the  the window. Maybe in an attempt to get my attention. She must have  really wanted in...and forgot where the door is. She decided the bathtub is a good place to hang out. I decided to go with it put a towel down along with some food and water to let her hang out for a while. 


This is Boy Meow-Meow. We have had him for about 4 years. He was about 2 when we adopted him. The hubbs takes the credit for him though. Some (cruel and asinine) person had shoved him in a pet carrier and left him by an apartment complex dumpster. Over a holiday weekend. We can only surmise he was there for several days without food or water. He will not go near a cat carrier to this day.He became my husband's maintenance cat hanging out around the maintenance garage. His name came about because he is so verbose and LOUD!.  One day the hubbs was walking the apartment complex grounds picking up trash when he he heard a very loud meowing. Meow, meow, MEOW, MEEEEYOOOOWWEHEW...and up over the hill comes this cat meowing and running as fast as he could towards my hubbs. Well the hubbs laughed so hard he cried and hence his name was born. I met Boy Meow-Meow a few weeks later and decided he needed to come home with us. Yeah- that was quite an adventurous 7 mile road home since he couldn't go in a pet carrier. I still carry the scars on my shoulder from that one! Totally worth it though...except when he has been hunting and decides to leave me presents...yuck! Anyhoo- today he decided to snooze in the back seat of my car. I jumped in the car to leave for some quick errands. Well he was none to happy with that!


This is Sam-Sam. Formerly known as Phillip. How do I know he was a Phillip? Well a little over a year ago, I was sitting in the cool October evening air mourning the loss of my lbc (little black cat) name Elby (L B C-get it?) when suddenly there is a fuzzy ball of fur running towards me meowing. This grey fuzzball was so cold  and of course hungry. He cried and cried wanting to come inside my house, but the hubbs was being mean and said NO MORE ANIMALS! And he meant it--that worked out well for him didn't it? ha So I was able to sneak feed him and hid a pet carrier on the porch so he had some shelter. Until the hubbs stone cold busted me one night. dah dah dummm! Well the hubbs said he had to go! I tearfully took him to the local animal control. He was scanned and found to have a chip. He used to belong to someone. He had a name (Phillip) and possibly a family. Phew I was informed he would be held  for 48 hrs. If his family didn't retrieve him he would be euthanized. OMG!  They gave me the owner's name and address. I called and sent a letter. I checked MySpace, Facebook and Twitter for the matching person's name but to no avail. If I didn't do something he was going to die! On the 3rd night I went to my hubbs and told him. There may have been a lot of tears involved. The hubbs gave me the 3 words I wanted to hear.Go get him. No need to tell  me twice. I may have squealed tires trying to get there before they closed. Twenty minutes and $50 later he was mine. We changed his name and brought him home. Doing time in the Big House must have traumatized him because he was (and still is) kinda skittish. He also wouldn't lay near me or purr for a very very long time. I didn't know a cat be clumsy--so boy is that the cat for me. He is the most ungraceful cat I have ever known! His nickname is Calamity Sam, because he is always breaking something!  I thought I was going to lose him a few weeks ago when he became really sick. I thought all the hard work of him trusting me was gone when I had to put him back in the pet carrier. Surprisingly he realized I wasn't going to dump him and seemed almost grateful when he new he was getting help. Now he loves on me and occasionally will even sleep next to me. It really is the little things, haha Well today he decided to make a bed out of a basket of clean white socks. Good thing they are the hubbs socks and not mine!

Well regardless of their antics, I love them all!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Wordless Wednesday #1

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Right now I wait

Right now I sit in the cool and darkened room of hospice with my father. The only light (other than the glow of my laptop) comes from the green and red glow of the pain pump attached to my dad. I am on the night shift. We (my step-mom, my brother L and I) have been taking turns staying overnight with my dad  to give my step-mom a break every other night. Because dealing with cancer in all it's ugliness is exhausting. In a very short time I have become well versed in the language of cancer. It is a language I hope to never speak again.

Today my dad spent several excruciating hours being re-imaged in order to receive some palliative radiation. It isn't radiation in the sense of curing, it is merely targeting the most aggressive spots of cancer to relieve some of his pain. You see he is Type 4 lung cancer. Which has a 2% chance of  survival given his staging. It is in his lungs, his lymph nodes, other organs and bones. Until today it was just words and abstract locations.  Then I saw the markings on his body for the radiologists to pinpoint and target the beams. They are every where--dozens of marks. His chest, ribs, hips, legs stomach, kidneys, and spine.... Silently I wept while plastering a cheerful smile and joking with my dad about being covered in graffiti.

More than anything my dad wants to go home, but he (and we) know he won't. He is so strong and stoic. All the nursing staff love him. We love him. They all have commented about how gracious he is even in the worst of times. He has a strong will but the cancer is ever growing and consuming. Everyday I come to sit with him. Sometimes there is a roomful of people-family and friends grasping at a few more precious moments. Many times he will awaken, look around and appear to be surprised of his surroundings. Other times he appears to be sleeping--only to be listening to the conversation. We have since learned to step outside the room when we need to discuss private matters. Such a sly old fox!  

Sometimes it is just he and I.  Some days are emotional as we deal with the baggage of unfinished business and what-ifs. Other days we talk about all sorts of randomness. And yet others are in silence as he sleeps and I study.  He said to me, "Little girl you need to be home studying or at school. That's your future. Don't waste your time here with me,"  I told him there is nothing more important right now than him. Then we both cried tears of sorrow and frustration--at the unfairness of it all.  Everyday that I am here he appears a little older and little more tired. We no longer measure time in terms of future (months or weeks) but measure time in the here and now (of days and hours).

So right now I sit in vigil. I watch him and the pain pump as it feeds him the medicine in a continuous loop. I listen to the second hand ticking on the clock and his labored breathing. I wait for him to call my name as he needs my assistance and then apologizes because he feels he is a burden and  I have to see him this way. And of course I always tell him to shush, it's fine, he isn't a burden and not to sass me, haha, I wait for the medicine to ease his pain and I wait while he finally succumbs to a short restless sleep. I wait for the first rays if sunlight and know another day has dawned. But mostly I wait for the inevitable.

I won't show you pictures of my father frail and ill. But I will  show you a picture of him when he was but a boy of 18. He had enlisted in the army, the bloom of youth still on his face. He was so strong and handsome. This is the picture I want to carry forever in my mind and in my heart.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Friday Happy hour

Apparently my Sedum plant is the Happy Hour for all things buzz-y and sting-y

I was afraid to get to close for fear of getting stung

 There were dozens all over the plants with an occasional butterfly or 2.

I am gonna move this in October when I re-do my perennial beds because this is way to close to my pool.

I hope they don't get to much of a buzz. HA!

Happy Weekend Y'all!