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Jul. 4th, 2009 07:03 pm
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Hot. (Supposedly only 90, as of this posting.)

Fleas. (I think next we move on to diatomaceous earth, although Wikipedia is surprisingly positive on the topic of daily vaccuuming

Didn't rain; garden half dead. (Cucumbers lost, beans and tomatoes doing okay, cantaloupes and watermelons thriving, the unnatural creatures.)

Why, again, do I live in Georgia?
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ta-blong. As in, "where does this tablong?"

(Meaning "belong," in case your two-year-old translator chip is wonky.)

I should also note, as I mentioned in comments elsewhere, that I had a good morning planting trees at Casper's school. The project was a day of service one, with some sponsorship by the city (the guy in charge was the city forester, and the city will bring a truck to water the plantings until they are established), a few volunteers from the service organization that organized the thing (a family of 4 from Kenesaw, which was nice), and mostly parents, most with kids, from the school. I met and had a nice chat with a parent whose younger child is at the same place as Dillo, and met a family whose youngest daughter shares my name, who have just been zoned into our school (and the school-age kids are unhappy about it.) I worked alongside a latino couple for a while, moving mulch, and only found out at the end when Casper and Dillo and mr. flea showed up that they are the parents of one of Casper's classmates. They didn't seem to speak much English, but I would have made more effort if I'd realized. Dillo and the younger child of one of the PTO parents who's the main engine behind the gardening and planting efforts hit it off, so that was nice.

We planted about 15 flowering cherries, 6 redbuds, 10 lil' gem magnolias (they stay small), a scattering of oaks and maples, and some bushes mostly between the magnolias. The school used to be fonted by a lawn with flowering cherries, which were all lost during the renovation construction that ended a year ago. When we first saw the school, it was asphalt drop-off loop and parking and vast expanses of red clay covered with anemic pine needle mulch. Two immense cedars planted in the 1920 (when the school was built) survived, saved during the construction by parent protest. The trees we planted today were pretty large - 2" mostly - so should make the place look inhabited again, come spring.

And now I want very much to plant a flowering cherry and a redbud in my yard.
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She seems to be doing well. Mrs. E spoke of her as a good citizen of the class, friendly with several of the girls and a good example to them of standing up for herself in the face of a few boys who are behaviour problems (which Mrs. E says they are working hard on. They the teachers, I mean, as well as they the boys in question.) She knows all her letters and the sounds and is starting to sound out words in her reading group. She's well into working on or already meeting most of the grade-level skills for the year, and we have 3/4 of it to go. They do do phonics, which relieves mr. flea, who attributes his inability to spell to newfangled non-phonics education. (English is HARD.)

(She's not in the most advanced reading group - there is a group that is reading the simplest books already. Must not tell my mother, who in a recent phone call when I talked about how Casper is getting close to reading, said that my grandmother Dod, who was my mother's parenting oracle as she had dysfunctional parents and had me at 22, told her that HER children (my father, aunt and uncle) all could read when they started kindergarten, so my mother decided I had to be able to read when I started kindergarten, and so she taught me at 4, and (unspoken, so far) why didn't Casper get to kindergarten already reading, must be flea's fault!!)

The only thing Mrs. E brought up that we could work on is that sometimes when she is tired/not feeling well/ upset she stops talking and resorts to little whimpering noises and then gets frustrated when Mrs. E and the aide don't understand. She does this at home, too, of course, so we are already working on it. It can be hard for her to express her emotions; she's pretty stoic for a while I think and then topples over. Possibly I am projecting.

I picked her up early today - they were released at 12:30 because of the conferences, and I picked her up at 1. We walked home, spread some "spider webs" on the front bushes, planted some iris and daffodils that I brought from NC, Casper built the most adorable treehouse for her little mouse figure out of a magnolia leaf and tape and some lambs' ear leaves and a tiny doll quilt and a washcloth (and the mouse has a dress made from a wipe), we took a big bubble bath together, I made soup and she ate bacon and did some art stuff involving a large vat of blue-dyed water, and then we walked back to school, visited the Scholastic book fair where I spent $24 and got some good bargains, and then to the conference. She is looking tired and run down and still is having digestive problems off and on - had diarrhea this afternoon. She often says her stomach hurts, and her voice is hoarse like a cold is coming on. I had hoped to get her to nap, but fat chance. I hope mr. flea can get her to sleep early tonight. She feels fragile to me right now. But I am proud that she is happy at school, working carefully, and a good citizen (who also, Mrs. E told us, likes to make people (including Mrs. E) laugh, but she's good at choosing when to be funny, and isn't disruptive with it, as some of the other kids who think they are funny are.)

santa?

Oct. 20th, 2008 11:58 am
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Out of the blue yesterday afternoon Casper asked me if Santa Claus is really real. I took evasive manoeuvres and asked her what she thought. She had a very logical approach - she talked about how there were so many people ('even in one house!') and it didn't seem possible that Santa could give them all presents.

I don't know if she thought this up by herself or some kid at school or afterschool has been talking about it. My family's Santa tradition is that everyone gets stockings, and those are from Santa, but in general we don't make a huge deal out of Santa. We've never done the mall photo op, and we left cookies last year, but it was all sort of low-key.

I do remember working out that Santa wasn't real for myself, probably at about Casper's age. So it's not outside the real of the possible. I also remember helping my mother fill the Easter baskets when I was 10, and being really sad about it. Even if you don't believe, it can be nice to see the fiction maintained. (Note: this may also explain some of my religious pretzelling.)

In gardening news, I had two cherry tomatoes off the plant last night, and need to dig up the basil for inside. I also weeded the bed on the E side of the house (with Casper and Dillo and little S. from next door's help!); my plan is to make it an herb garden (rosemary, lavendar, etc.), or native plant garden (um?), or butterfly garden (lantana, buddleia, etc.). Or something low-key and mostly not edible, at any rate (because of the risk of lead paint). My big bulb order is scheduled to come tomorrow, so I have to plan where to put everything and get them in the ground soon.
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We did the first of (probably innumerable) runs to Lowe's today, where we purchased manual hedge-trimming shears, chains to make the ceiling fans turn on and off-able without jumping, toilet shims, and door-stoppers. We didn't buy a $200 ladder, bars to allow the hanging of clothes in the childrens' closets, paint (though we took sample cards and Casper seems to want her room painted lime green and pumpkin, hmm maybe some editorial drawing of the line will have to happen there). AND of course I bought potting soil and plants: 1 small thyme; a cherry tomato and a regular tomato, both advertised as being good for late-season planting; a cucumber; a basil; and a pink-flowering vinca, chosen by Casper. The vinca joins its compatriots in the front garden, and the thyme went in there too, and then I got a little beyond myself given that it's in the 90s and there were more mosquitoes than really anyone should have to abide, and planted the tomatoes, basil, and cuke in the back right below the deck. Doing all this included unpacking the boxes in the shed (to find the tools), digging up the bed (good soil) - well, not digging up so much as weeding and digging holes for the plants, finding the hose and hooking it up (works) and assorted other not strictly necessary things. I feel the better for it, though.

I think it is necessary to hire someone to mow the back yard, or at the least borrow someone's electric mower. I think we could keep up with the grass if we mowed it weekly, but at 4 weeks gone we have no chance.

Our neighbors on the right having decided to have a kudzu plantation in their back yard, that's a huge issue to deal with. I don't think manual trimming is going to work, but mr. flea wanted to start with that before moving straight to the electric weed-whacker.

I have a lot to learn about the existing plants - expect a series of "name that plant!" posts with photos. But not quite yet. And I need to find a better garden store than Lowe's, and maybe take some classes at the UGA botanical garden.
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It was nice to be without a car, though tomorrow will be a bit tricky.

Saturday morning mr. flea had a hankering for donuts, and was bemoaning our carless state, so I suggested he ride his bike, as Dunkies couldn't be more than 2 miles. He did it! Took him about 20 minutes each way, and he arrived home at 7:45 with a quart of milk in each side pocket of the backpack and a dozen in a bag in the center compartment.

Building on this success we walked to the farmer's market, with Casper riding her bike the entire way (and back) with only one crying incident (when she and mr. flea had a miscommunication about crossing the street walking the bike). And she learned the concept of "burning rubber" which she finds very satisfying. I called P. to say we were carless and would miss the birthday party, and she offered to come get us. We had a lovely time at the little pool, which had a whole section that was 2-3 feet, so Casper could frolic freely. She has learned a fair bit of swimming at the Y in just one week even, and tells us she can out her face in the water now (though she told us she could only do it AT the Y!) Dillo was slow to warm as usual but very much liked a watering can he appropriated. After dinner and cupcakes Casper embarrassed me a bit by gleefully opening our gift to the birthday boy herself and brandishing it at him (a book) and further had to be restrained from opening all the other presents as well. I think the cupcakes had started to kick in by then.

This morning we set off to walk (Dillo in stroller and Casper on her bike again) to an early brunch at Whole Foods (foiled by various other brunch places that don't open until 10 or even 11!) but as we crossed campus we fell in behind a large group of teenagers who, it turned out, were also heading to WF, so we carried on to Elmo's. We had a bit of a wait, as might be expected, but were lucky as it turned out, since while we were eating their dishwasher died and flooded the kitchen, and they had to close. For the first time we ordered Dillo a meal of his own (chocolate chip pancake, natch) and he ate about half of it. Then groceries at the WF and home. mr. flea biked back over to return a video later, and worked for a couple of hours at Lilly. I hope he takes to this biking thing!

We have a ride to the Y (Lakewood) tomorrow for Casper, but I think mr. flea will have to go get her on the bus in the afternoon if the car isn't fixed by then (which I doubt it will be). Hmm, and it now occurs to me I will probably be dropping Dillo off by bus in the AM, which is both awkward and liable to make me late. Ah well.

For father's day I got mr. flea Flight of the Conchords DVDs and a Nerf Blaster. I am good at presents, if I do say so myself.

I dug up a mess of daffodil bulbs from the yard to take with us, and researched storing iris rhizomes, so I can do those next. (I am leaving plenty of both - not denuding the yard!) Aside from herbs and lilies, not much is going on in the garden. The rabbits found the peas and apparently SLEPT on them as well as nibbling off the shoots but leaving peas in their pods in neat little piles, uneaten. Weirdoes. Then we had the 100 degree week and that was it for peas. I did have a calla lily bloom last week; maybe 100 degree heat is what they need.

So far in my Freecycle adventures I am dealing with a flaky woman who wants my stroller but can't seem to come get it (alas, she is the only person who seems to want it), and a sensible person who is coming tomorrow to take a cat cosy. Of course, I hauled the cat cosy out of the basement and not only did the cat immediately begin sleeping in it (she had disdained it, hence the basement) but Casper also wanted to take it in her room to store toys in. I told them both it was promised to another and have put it on the porch. Next up I hope someone will want two enormous boxes full of styrofoam packing peanuts.

peas!

May. 17th, 2008 07:27 pm
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We have them. Lots and lots of peas.

Both my kids really like fresh garden peas.

At least I seem to be raising them right in some aspect.

(Manners? Not. So. Much.)
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It got hot and sunny. Okay, it's only 80, and still nice in the house with no AC, but it was damned hot in the sun, with a hat on, pushing some 65 pounds of child in a stroller to the farmer's market. Didn't have much cash, so we just got strawberries (eaten before we left the market), some beets, mixed purple and orange (casper's choice) and some salad mix. Next weekend maybe we'll plan to go pick our own strawberries; they are a dollar a pound, but I imagine people always pick more than they mean to.

I resisted all seedlings, because: moving! So this year will be peas and that's all.

The first of the iris bloomed today. Peas 1 are fading blooms and have 3-4cm pods; peas 1 are starting to bloom; peas 3 and 4 are well up. The kale seedlings I planted have done NOTHING. Rabbit fodder soon, no doubt.

When we moved down here from CT I brought my lemon thyme, a lily-of-the-valley, and a wild iris in pots. They are all still thriving in the garden here. I'd like to take several things with us, but not sure how the space issue will work out. I can certainly dig up some daffodils once the foliage fades and transport them as bulbs. The iris probably too, and the big clump desperately needs a dividing, though I've never moved iris father than across the yard. I'd love to take the thyme again. I have calla lillies in a pot that don't bloom (maybe this year? I thought I'd killed them but they are in shoots again) and two amaryllis that need to be planted out to grow foliage and rebuild. All of those will have to come in pots. I planted parsley and basil in pots on purpose, to be transportable (need to move them outside as they are leggy and unhappy, but it's been too cold at night until just now).

Must mow lawn. Really should have gotten mower sharpened.
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This is my sixth southern spring, and I still am shocked by how fast they happen. Last week we were bud and bare twigs, and now we're leafing out.

My yard:
ipheion, grape hyacinth passing
daffodils full, starting to pass
turkish tulips full
redbud full
azaleas coming out
dogwood tiny tiny blooms (looks like it will bloom this year! yay!)
iris not yet in bud
lilies showing shoots
peas 1: 5 inches
peas 2: 2 inches
peas 3: planted yesterday

Broader world:
daffodils passing
tulips full to blowsy
cherries in FULL bloom
bartlett pears losing bloom, starting to leaf out
wisteria early to mid bloom
azaleas early to mid bloom
pin oaks in danglers and starting to leaf out
freak early iris at my neighbors bloomed a full 3 weeks ago!

Garden!

Mar. 15th, 2008 03:40 pm
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The peas planted March 1 are in sprout; planted more peas today and have rather a lot left. Maybe tomorrow.

Bought impulse kale (TM jonquil) at the Farmer's Market and planted it. Only a flat of 6, mixed red and green. Hope that it is early enough and large enough seedlings to beat the bunnies, who never seem to trouble us much before June.

Planted seed thyme, basil, and parsley, in pots for inside.

We have daffodils starting to bloom, as usual as they are ending for the rest of the block. Also grape hyacinth, iphion, blue squills. No redbud yet, but Bradford pears are out in force in the neighborhood.

Sunny and 80 degrees this AM; it rained briefly while we were napping and is now overcast, but I was hoping for more steady rain, as I stupidly forgot the shower bucket this AM.
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I did a pretty good job.

I bought Dillo some new shoes from ebay - the exact same blue boots that were Casper's first Stride Rites (except hers were a 7.5 and his are a 5.5!)

I bought pea, basil, parsely and thyme seeds. We planted peas yesterday!

I bought Dillo 2 Hanna Andersson onesies from ebay. Right size, cute stuff, good deal - but the reason I bought them was I was having a really hard few days. Still, a sensible $10 purchase is definitely the way to go if you're going to be doing emotional shopping.

I bought a $9 decent quality bucket from the grocery store to collect shower-warming-up water for watering the garden. Our drought is easing off a bit for now, but it's the wettest time of the year for us. We'll be back in extreme drought this summer, I have no doubt. And why waste water? (mr. flea also noted that the bucket would be good for mopping. Which it would if we ever, you know, mopped.)

I have been window-shopping a LOT lately, though - spring catalogs, ebay, and this weekend's pants extravaganza. I am probably going to buy some jeans ($20 I hope) and a cardigan (ditto) on ebay in the next couple of days.

water

Oct. 4th, 2007 10:19 am
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We're now officially in "exceptional drought," which makes it all the more galling that it's been insufferably humid the last couple of days. Turn that moisture into rain, please?

Also insufferable is the fact that some people are continuing to water lawns. The sprinkler system at the Looni's Catholic Student house (by which I walk on my way to work) had been on this AM, although the water regulations allow watering only on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Mostly the Looni is letting the grass die (or go dormant, I hope), which I applaud.

I've put a Rubbermaid bin in the sink and am using grey water to water the garden (such as it is; I planted a bunch of fall crops, including kale, lettuces, and the last of the bean seeds I had, in hopes that the rabbits would have forgotten about me. The rabbits remembered. Casper keeps finding little piles of rabbit poop in the lawn). I should have been doing this long ago - it's a little awkward but not too bad and I get TONS of water. I can also empty the tub out after the kids' bath with a bucket if I need more.
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Last night we went to Elmo's. The family in the booth next to us had a daughter of perhaps 5, named Evelyn. Their 10 month old son was named Paul, which was in fact a hot contender for Dillo's name. As if that wasn't enough, as we left, I heard a voice calling "Evelyn! Get in the car!" from across the parking lot. Yep, another family, this time with a daughter maybe 7.

Prior to last night, the only child-Evelyn I'd ever heard of was a little girl just Casper's age whom we met at a party a couple of years ago. It was a little strange.

I have received my John Scheepers/van Engelen bulb catalogs in the mail (excellent prices for bulk, especially!), so am deep in fantasy-garden mode. I realized that my mother has a garden in Cape Cod what needs plantings, so if I make some recommendations, she may follow them!

For the (tiny, part shade part sun, good old soil) front yard: Some taller species and Kaufmannia tulips: T. ophanidea flava, T. marjoletti, The First. Good old daffs like Actaea or Pheasant's Eye, more King Alfred and Mount Hood, plus tazettas Avalance and Falconet. Maybe some real tulips: I especially love Angelique (a double late), Apricot Impression - heck, there are pages and pages of great tulips. One can hardly choose. Bigger crocus here: c. vernus Jeanne d'Arcm Twilight, Yellow Mammoth.

For the side (basically foundation plantings along a porch and next to a glassed-in below-porch greenhouse type room): I'd do daffodils and daylilies. I like Hyperion and Happy Returns; I am less wild about orange daylilies and HATE pink ones; wee ones like the ubiquitous Stella d'Oro wouldn't be appropriate. For daffodils, in this context I'd want a clumped mix of standard classics: King Alfred, Mount Hood, Marieke.

For the bed in back: I'm thinking rock garden type things. It's on a slope, facing south and east and with good sun, probably pretty well-drained. So miniature daffodils, species tulips, grape hyacinth, dwarf iris, and crocus. Tulips: I could love almost anything here. I especially love T. bakeri Lilac Wonder, T. humilis Persian Pearl, T. linifolia, T. saxatilis. Daffs: Little Gem, Topolino, Segovia, Hawera, Baby Moon. Crocus: C. tommasinianus Barr's Purple or Lilac Beauty, c. crysanthus Prince Claus and Cream Beauty. Rock Garden Iris: i. reticulata Pixie and Clairette; i. cycloglossa. Muscari armeniacum and M. neglectum (best name evar). Dutch Iris: Blue Magic, Carmen, Rosario.

For around the edges of the lawn, especially against the fence/hedge next to the Kellys': peonies and heirloom species lilies. I really only like double peonies. Available cheaply are: Bunker Hill, Dinner Plate, Festiva Maxima, Raspberry Sundae. The lilies are average 4 feet and multiflowering, with pendant blooms. I like Black Beauty, l. speciosum album and rubrum. L. citronella and davidii are lovely if I can wrest myself away from the whole pink thing I have going here.

ARRRRRRGH

Jun. 26th, 2007 05:21 pm
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The great rabbit massacree of 2007 has occurred.

Beans completely GONE. http://www.flickr.com/photos/casperflea/634426986/

Basil, too.

So frustrated. I work so hard to keep things alive in this infernal climate, and in one night - bam, all gone.

Wah.

Beans!

Jun. 22nd, 2007 11:21 am
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54 bush beans this morning, about 4 of them nibbled at the ends by rabbits, who have also entirely consumed the remaining lettuces.

My tomatoes aren't doing very well. They just aren't growing, and my cherokee purple is yellow and losing leaves.

In book news,
Atul Gawande, Better (2007). Mostly New Yorker articles, which I had read. but it's nice to reread. I really like his writing, although I have some bones to pick with his article on giving birth and c-sections.

Wendy Wasserstein, Shiksa Goddess (2001). Really short, fluffy magazine pieces, collected. I checked this out mainly because of my memory of her New Yorker article about the very premature birth of her daughter, and a coworker was reading her just-published novel and we got to talking about it.

Liza Mundy, Everything Conceivable (2007). About the variety of assisted reproductive therapies and their social implications (IVF, egg donation, sperm donation, selective reduction, multiples). A good introduction to the topic, and balanced, I felt. I was especially interested by the contrast between the US and UK in terms of degree of regulation of ART and associated consequences. And by how much we really don't know, medically, and are just starting to explore, socially (interest in donor-gamete children about their biological donors, etc.)
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How about you? Yep, I came back and once again we are in mid 90s and orange ozone alerts. The garden survived my absence and Casper and I ate 4 beans the other night. I have blooming sweet peas (not wildly thriving, but living, and blooming: http://www.flickr.com/photos/casperflea/566311845/) and set tomatoes and generally things are ticking along. Must be vigilant about watering, though.

The Dillo's eighth tooth is through. He is so energetic - will climb on anything. Favorite toys include the doggy xylophone and putting shapes in the shape sorter (without the shape-sorting lid - we are at basic levels of skill here!) Has slept until past 6am the last couple of days! Still very chubby.

The kids transitioned back to school just fine yesterday. On Saturday Casper had her Tap & Tumble recital, which was darling if very very long. The twos were funny as hell and all over the place; the young threes were a combination of tragic and funny - Zoe stood with maracas on hips, the opening pose of their routine, for basically the entire song, and Harrison made horrified tragic faces; and the older threes and fours (including Casper) were pretty much with-it, if not exactly smooth dancers. Casper was one of the clumsier ones, but not outstandingly klutzy (she is also one of the younger ones, and was wearing sneakers that made her stumble, whoops.) I can report that I am such a sappy mother that I got weepy when she came on 'stage' - maybe it was sleep deprivation? http://www.flickr.com/photos/casperflea/566754595/

We also had father's day festivities at Elmo's. Casper was not best pleased about the whole idea of the annual ritual of the photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/casperflea/566311797
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Damn, must run out and start sprinkler. Am in underwear. Wait one sec...

Okay, back, clad in housecoat, rather damp, especially about the left arm (the faucet sprays, and I had to reposition the sprinkler). I suprised a rabbit which went bounding off into the neighbor's yard.

Today harvested the last of the peas, pretty much, and pulled most of them out. It was a sorry spring for peas, in contrast to last year. Too dry, and bizarre cold/hot fluctuations.

We've also been eating a fair amount of decent lettuce. It's a greenleaf, heading lettuce. A little bitter. I do love butter lettuce, but we have the wrong climate - this is a stout heat-tolerant variety.

Progress of other things:
Sweet peas seem finally to be showing some initiative, though I am worried about the heat.
Petunias blooming, doing okay.
Tomatoes up to 2 feet tall, a couple have set small fruit.
Cucumber blooming.
Zucchini flourishing but not yet blooming.
Beans doing well, have 3 sets of leaves and working towards blooming.
In tiny sprouty stage: lettuce set 2, kale, carrots, beets.
Planted today: more beans, carrots, beets, canteloupe.

In flower news, the roses and clematis are blowsy and on their last legs. The first lily is blooming, and I should really dig and divide a lot of the iris this year but doubt I'll get to it.

Herbs: lemon thyme is spreading, new wooly thyme doing okay, mint surprisingly docile, chives and lavendar in bloom.

It's gotten hot - we've had the AC on all day and the forecast for the forseeable future is 90 degrees. Insert ritual annual "I hate summer in the south" plaint here. With added "I forgot how annoying the noisy AC unit is; how I wish we had central air."

Today to Duke Park, farmer's market, home and gardening + sprinkler play, grocery. Tomorrow we're off early to the lake, plan to swim early, have cookout lunch and then go home before it gets too hot/crowded. We hope, anyway.

I have also booked plane tickets for Boston for 2 weeks from today. I haven't asked for the time off from work yet, oops. Also, we get back at 10:30 am on the 16th; at 11:30 am Casper is supposed to be at some church in Cary for her gymnastics class recital. We'll see if THAT happens. The booking of the tickets has consumed my whole energy for the day in stress (nonstops only please, but price is an issue, and trying to work out who needs to be where when). I am going with just the kids; mr. flea will stay here and produce a thesis proposal by June 15. We will have at least 2 nights and possibly 4 at the Cape, and the rest with Grandma and Auntie Vee. I am feeling rather doomful about it at present, which is a sorry commentary on me as it is really YAY FUN BEACH VACATION.
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It's huuuumid - 71% humidity in the house, due to morning thunderstorms, so the AC has gone on for the first time this year. We needed the rain, but feh anyway.

I need to do some garden work this weekend. We have been havesting peas, which didn't do that well this year. It has been dry and hot alternating with dry and really cold. Last year we had a long cool moist spring and happy happy peas. I've eaten some lettuce, mostly from thinning the larger head lettuce. Everything else is doing appropriately but not thriving unusually. So far, my first planting of peans is uneaten (this is very unusual.) The climbing rose and clematis are both in full bloom right now, but the thunderstorm meant a lot of petals off the roses. The iris are mostly gone by, many gone to mush in the rain.

I am still sick, Dillo is coughy and very annoyed (an hour of crying, unsoothable, in the night), Casper is still pushing my buttons in an extraordinary fashion and making me marvel at her focus and will. Last night she asked for an extra cup of milk every 30-90 seconds for nearly 2 hours straight. We said no every single time, and explained out rationale (lots of bed-peeing lately), and withstood torrents of tears, whining, screaming, and demanding. She got up at 7 am and said, "I want some milk now!"

We are now 1 minute late for our lunch date already, but the Dillo just fell asleep half an hour ago, poor noodle. I guess I should call them and say we'll be late.
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I was a little lazy this weekend, and despite the gorgeousness did not get as much done as I wanted to. I did: mow the lawn (mostly - will try to finish tonight); purchase tomato (Cherokee Purple, Brandywine, and a modern hybrid), zucchini, and cucumber seedlings and plant them; plant carrots in the big orange pot, plant beets (um, where did I plant them? I think next to the endmost tomato. Yeah, that's it.)

A rabbit or something ate a lot of the kale.

I forgot to purchase basil. Next week.

The iris are blooming like mad: http://www.flickr.com/photos/casperflea/475865954/

To do: finish mowing lawn (there's a lot of hand-trimming that needs to happen, too); water everything; plant beans next to the peas; check peas for ripeness (gosh that seems like the wrong word but what would be better?), plant more carrots, thin lettuce and eat the thinnings; the neverending work of trimming bushes and cutting down errant saplings.

Book read:
An Anthropologist on Mars, Oliver Sacks, 1995. Essays like those he still writes in the New Yorker and elsewhere, about an artist who became colorblind in an accident, an artist who has very detailed memories of the town he grew up in, the name memfault British autistic teen who draws buildings, Temple Grandin. Generally interesting stuff, though his style starts to pall on one after a bit (so enamored of the footnote!)
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Mostly to remind myself what got done and didn't, and where I planted things!

Mowed front lawn in the dark - back and forth and back and forth to try to get the clover down. Needs a rake and pick-up and spot re-mow today. Or, you know, one of these days.

Planted marigolds in the pot that is, in theory, calla lilies (we'll see if these develop - there is one sprout).

Planted mesclun lettuce by the parsley, mini lemon marigolds behind it.

Planted two short rows of beans next to the new lettuce rows.

Next: horiz row of beans behind peas, leaving room for tomatoes.
Need to put carrots in that big pot, and where else? Maybe short vert row next to mesclun (also, old beet seeds from last year?)

I should take a picture of my beautiful iris.

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July 2016

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