Monday, May 31, 2021

The First Lily

 I looked out the kitchen window this morning and there was the first Stella d'Oro lily bloom hiding behind a fallen iris so I hustled out to take its picture.  Soon there'll be a whole row of them to share.


There's also another French iris that opened overnight.  This one is at the renters' end of the wall.

The Wren has opened up a second birdhouse!  I heard him singing and looked out to see him on top of the first birdhouse, but an hour later he was popping in and out of the other birdhouse, the birdhouse that no bird has lived in for at least ten years.  So it seems like my Wren is a bigamist or at least hopes to be one.  I assume he has a mate in the first house and is looking for another mate to install in the second house, the cad.

Today's toss was a stack of tee shirts that I carried up from the basement.  Some of them got to stay because I think I can still wear them but most of them are nicely folded in the carton to go to Goodwill.

The prompt today asked what you'd like to be famous for.  I said that I'd like to be a famous writer but in reality I don't want to be famous at all.  I'm happy being a nobody living in the Midwest and dabbling in writing and sewing and knitting.

I spent the weekend working on the next art assignment.  I have a few things made but I'm not sure I'm done yet so I'm not ready to share.


Sunday, May 30, 2021

Sundown Sunday

It was sunny for most of today but clouds rolled in during the afternoon making the sunset higher in the sky which made it easier for me to take a picture of it.  Not as dramatic as a horizon sunset but a nice pastel one.

The male Catbird came for a dip this afternoon.  I like the jaunty lines of him and the way he cocks his tail when he's on the rim of the birdbath.  Naturally he flew away as soon as I lined up to take a cocked tail shot.

Now there are two French Irises.  I was tempted to cut one and bring it inside but thought better of it.  I don't know if iris like being in a vase of water so I left them where they grew.  I have hopes for more of them but so far no more buds.

There are tiny little buds about as big as my thumbnail on the Stella d'Oro day lilies all along the retaining wall.  I can't wait until there's a long line of little yellow lilies to show you.

The last surviving Asiatic lily in front is full of buds too.  There's lots to look forward to.

Today's toss was the stack of foam alphabet tiles that the grandkids have outgrown.

The prompt today asked what you have done that might be considered daring.  That was an easy one--I've been diving with sharks.  Not a baited shark dive but been diving when sharks swam by.  They're big and graceful.

I did laundry today.  I was going to take a walk but contented myself with walking up and down the basement stairs a bunch of times.  DD called tonight and we had a nice long chat.  She said they're planning to spend Christmas here this year.  Hooray!  It was great to talk with you too, Aunt B!


Saturday, May 29, 2021

Sunny Saturday

It was perfect today, sunny and warm with a little breeze.  I was tempted to roll up the side of the house and let the fresh air blow through but contented myself with opening the windows.


For the first time one of the French irises bloomed.  This one is bluer than the regular irises and smaller, therefore lighter so the stalk didn't collapse under the weight of the flower like the other ones did.

The poppies on the side of the house are still opening.  None of the ones in the garden patch have popped yet.

Just as I finished yoga this morning a female Hummingbird landed on the feeder and stayed there for more than a minute.  Plenty of time for me to grab the camera and take her picture.  I wonder if she has a nest nearby.

I started May Toe Cap #4 this afternoon but got caught up watching episodes of Call the Midwife and found my hands lying in my lap instead of knitting so I didn't make much headway.

Today's toss was another shirt.  A long-sleeved tee this time.

The prompt today asked what makes you laugh.  My grandkids' antics make me laugh.  It makes me sad that I couldn't think of anything else that makes me laugh these days.

I've been on a hunt to find my fair ribbons.  The program at last week's Knitting Guild Zoom was given by a pair of fair judges.  Hearing them got me enthused about entering this year and I wanted to find the ribbons because I want to make sure that I don't reenter anything.  I found them and in the process I cleaned out the desk.  And then I ran the vacuum around the house just for good measure.


Friday, May 28, 2021

A Little Better

The weather today was a little better.  It was sunny for most of the day, in the low 50s with a sharp wind out of the northwest.  Hopefully the wind will die down and it'll stay nice for the holiday weekend.  Can you believe that it's Memorial Day already?

The House Finches are the most reliable bird visitors these days.  Again I saw a Hummingbird fly away from the feeder.  I thought that I'd be able to see them better with this feeder but maybe not.  Maybe I'll switch back to the old feeder next time.  Way to confuse the birds, Barbara.

I finished May Toe Cap 3 tonight at Friday Night Knitting with about 14" of yarn left.  Whew.  I only made it 3" tall before starting the decreases and cut down on the number of rounds before finishing it off.  It'll probably be just right for a little kid's foot in a cast.  Or maybe it'll be a preemie hat.  They're kind of interchangeable.

Today's toss was another shirt that no longer fits.

The prompt today asked what you think "special" means.  I think it means out of the ordinary.  Could be good, could be bad, you just never know.


Thursday, May 27, 2021


What a crap day!  Yesterday was perfect, sunny and 70, and today was rainy starting at noon and never got up to 50.  Jeez, this yo-yo weather is making me crazy.  I don't know how to dress from one day to the next.  I wore shorts and a tee shirt when I mowed yesterday and today I'm back in jeans, a long-sleeved tee shirt, and a knitted vest to cut the chill.   Thank goodness I decided to mow yesterday.  I was thinking about waiting until today but, like I said, it started drizzling at noon and only got rainier as the day went on.

The birds have not been posing the last few days, although I did see a Hummingbird in the vicinity of the feeder twice today but it wasn't posing.  So instead of birds we have a two-toned squirrel on the suet pellets.  This squirrel looks like a Franken-squirrel; it's coat is one color down to its waist and a completely different color from there down, like parts of two squirrels sewed together.

There were a couple poppy buds just opening yesterday and I meant to check to see if they were open today but I wasn't about to go out in the rain.  See the sunshine?  That was yesterday.

This afternoon I portioned out M&Ms and pretzel twists and then I started another toe cap.  This yarn has sparkles but it never shows up in pictures, which drives me nuts.  I take a number of shots but the shiny doesn't show.  Grr.

Today's toss was a striped knit shirt that should fit but doesn't and it doesn't look good.  Out it goes.

The prompt today said to write a weather report in the style of a children's character so I wrote it like Cookie Monster.  "Full moon like cookie.  Cookie!  Om nom nom.  Rain like milk to dunk cookie.  Cookie!  Om nom.  Sun bright to melt chocolate chip cookie.  Cookie!!  Om nom nom."  Silly and fun.


Wednesday, May 26, 2021


It didn't take a few days for there to be poppies, there are some today.  I found these on the side of the house when I went out to mow this morning.  I love the papery look of the petals and the powdery purple pollen in the centers.

I went to a funeral this morning and couldn't stay.  My local writing partner passed away last week and her funeral was this morning.  I was all prepared to go to the service but wasn't prepared for the room being packed with people, mostly unmasked.  The deceased was the only one I knew in the room so I signed the book and skedaddled.  I've never been a fan of crowds and today was more than I could cope with.

So I came home and mowed, first the front yard, then, after lunch, the back yard.  The grass sure seems to be growing too fast these days.  The self-propelled function isn't working like it used to so I do a lot more pushing than before.  Seems like I'll need a new mower before next mowing season.

The irises are still blooming even though the wind blew them over yesterday.  The weather was perfect today except that the breeze was out of the northwest which means that I was bathed in the aroma of chargrilled burgers from Burger King while I mowed.  It wasn't strong enough that I ached to go over and get one, though.

Today's toss was a 4XL tee shirt that hangs like a sack on me.  I need to find some summer capris too.  My old ones hang on me but I'm not too crazy about going shopping.  Maybe I can find some online.

The prompt today was to write the plot of a horror story set on a high-speed train.  Uh, I don't watch horror movies and I don't read horror stories so that was a challenge.  I ended up with a crazy person stowing away and throwing people off the train.  I didn't get to the end so I don't know about a hero or heroine to save the day.


Tuesday, May 25, 2021


I am happy to report that there are buds on the poppies.  I love the fuzzy buds, I think they look like lion noses, don't ask me why.  One plant has buds, the other two don't.  Yet.  But they will and for a few days there'll be poppies in the garden.


The Goldfinch stopped by for a drink today.  The Mrs. didn't come by, only the Mr. did, maybe she's busy on the nest.

Another iris bloomed today.  This one is more of a red violet color than the blue violet of the other ones.  It was extremely windy today so all of the iris stalks got blown down, poor sad things.  I went to Stein's in the afternoon and bought some coleus for the pots across the front of the house and four $1 geraniums for the patio pots.  I hurried them into the ground and didn't take a picture.  They were very dry so I wanted to get them potted and watered in before they started to droop.  We need rain.

And I finished May Toe Cap 2 this morning.

Today's toss was some powder fresh scent Secret deodorants that I bought a while back before I switched to unscented.  I tried using the scented but could smell it on me all day and it bugged me so out they go.  Someone will like them.

The prompt today said that you wake up in the hospital not knowing how or why you are there.  Write the beginning of a short story about it.  So I did and it wasn't too bad.


Monday, May 24, 2021

Pneumonia Weather

That's what the weatherman called the weather we've been having this week.  One day hot and humid, the next cool and breezy, then back to hot and humid.  In three days I've had the a/c on, the furnace on, and the a/c on again.  I've had the furnace and the a/c on today.  Not that I believe that the weather causes pneumonia or a cold but it's been just nuts.  And it's not supposed to get much more stable over the next few days.

I got a picture of a pair of Cowbirds today.  They stopped for a minute and I managed to nab their photo.  Cowbirds are notable because the female lays her eggs in other birds' nests so that they raise her chicks for her.  I don't know why they're called Cowbirds; I know that they don't moo.  Maybe they hang around with cows.

More irises opened today.  One stalk of them tipped over so I could see the fuzzy part of the flower.  I don't know what part it is or what it's called but I like the contrast of the purple petals and the yellow fuzz.

And the chives are blooming.  I'll make a salad for supper tomorrow night and might pick a chive flower and tear it apart to garnish my salad.  I've still got grilled teriyaki chicken, grape tomatoes, and mini cucumbers to build my supper salad.  Yum.


I didn't get May Toe Cap 2 finished tonight at Zoom social knitting, too much talking, but I'm within an inch of starting the decreases.  I've had this yarn since I learned to knit and still love the colors.  I'll be sorry when I've knitted it all up.

Today's toss was a bra that I don't have enough boob to fill the cups anymore.  Sorry, TMI (too much information).

I didn't write today.  I went to the store, stopped at the gas station, and thought about the next art assignment.  We're supposed to paint or draw something memorable on a paper plate.  I have two ideas and printed off some graphics from a Print Shop program.  I can't decide if I should trace them (I for sure can't draw them) or cut them out and make a collage.  At least I found out today that watercolors stick to the paper plates I have.


Sunday, May 23, 2021


Well.  Yesterday it was humid and in the 80s.  Today it was overcast, breezy, and barely cracked the 60s.  It's no wonder the back of my throat feels scratchy with the violent swings in weather fronts around here.  And tomorrow the front is supposed to slip back north so that it'll be in the 80s and humid tomorrow.  Gah!

I looked out the back window to see the first iris bud has opened.  Flags, my Grandma Angermeier used to call them flags.and in googling "purple flags flower" up pops pictures of irises so I guess she wasn't the only one.  By the looks of the buds more should be open soon.

The alliums in the back garden have opened too, a whole lot of them.  They aren't very clumped together so it was hard to get a decent picture of them.

I spent most of the day swapping winter clothes and socks for summer clothes and socks.  I sorted through my leggings tossing the ones that don't fit anymore too.  On one trip up or down stairs, I sat for a few minutes and hemmed the Shirt no.1 that I started the other day.  This one will be good for hot days since it's gauze and very light.  That makes five new Shirts no.1 which seems like the right number of them for now.  I'll make more when these get too big--someday.

This evening I started another cast sock so I have something to knit tomorrow evening at zoom social knitting.

Today's toss was a bag of t-shirts and leggings that have outlived their usefulness to me.

The prompt today said to write a short story set in a laundromat.  I got started but ran out of page before I got to the good part.  Tsk.

I went to Meijer this afternoon and found the birdseed that the birdseed store was out of so I bought two bags, came home, and filled the feeder.  Check.


Saturday, May 22, 2021


It was hot enough today that the air conditioner turned on in the middle of the day without help from me.  I was sitting on the couch knitting and realized that I felt cool air blowing on me.  It took me an hour to finish knitting the cast sock because I was watching an episode of the Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries that I DVR on Friday nights.  Have you watched that on PBS?  It's a series from a few years ago from Australia, is set in the 20s or 30s, and has the best clothes and cars.

The ostrich ferns are growing swiftly in the heat and humidity of the last few days.  The fronds have shot right up and started filling in.  I love the bright chartreuse of them.

The lilies of the valley started blooming!  They smell so good and are so sweet with their little white bells on the green stems.  Every spring I snip one off and tuck it into a card that I send to DD in Kentucky.  She loves them so I make sure that she has one from home.  They remind me of my grandparents' patch of them in Indiana too.

I noticed this afternoon that the honeysuckle is starting to bloom.  I love the color of the flowers and the fact that they attract the Hummingbirds.  I saw the male Hummingbird at the feeder this afternoon but of course he was on the back side where I could barely see him and couldn't take his picture.  He hovered for a split second so I got to see his ruby throat.  I think I'm going to try a different feeder to see if that one makes it easier to see the birdies.

Today's toss was a few chairs-in-a-bag that have sat in the garage for years without being used.  Someone should get the use of them instead of them rotting out there.

The prompt today asked what event in your past you would relive if you could and why.  I chose my first ocean dive because it was such a revelation.  It took all of my nerve to roll off the boat into the ocean and then it was like swimming in an aquarium.  There have been lots of events I'd like to relive but that one popped into my head first so it got written about.

I was going to sew up the next shirt but didn't.  I just didn't have the oomph today to go down there and be productive.  Sitting and watching TV was my speed today.  I should have gone in search of birdseed since the store I went to yesterday was out but, like I said, I just didn't have the energy.  Maybe tomorrow.  Or Monday.


Friday, May 21, 2021

Sewing Up

It was drizzly and humid today so I stayed inside in the afternoon.  Now that I think of it, I was inside in the morning too.  Anyway, in the afternoon I went downstairs and finished the Shirt no.1 that I started sewing up yesterday.  All I had left to do was hem the sleeves and the bottom.  I think it looks summery. Maybe I'll wear it tomorrow.

The Catbird came for a bath this morning.  It came yesterday too and spent time meowing on the birdbath rim.  It really sounds like a cat, it's kind of weird but there was a bird imitating a cat.

I made good progress on May Toe Cap #1 at Friday Night Knitting tonight.  I'm only about four rounds from being finished but my hands got tired so I slowed down to give them a break.

Today's toss was a mesh cardigan that was Mom's and is too small for me.  I thought it would fit me now but it's still too small and I don't like it much anyway.

The prompt today said that your appearance totally changes overnight.  How do you convince those around you that you are yourself?  I suppose by telling them something that only I would know, some secret or something that we did alone together.  Or I could have a fresh start and be somebody else!


Thursday, May 20, 2021

Cutting Out

It was humid this afternoon.  Hot too.  Humid enough that I tootsed the A/C down one degree just to get the humidity out of the house.  We had a little rain in the morning which started the whole humidity cycle and I don't think it's supposed to get any better over the weekend.  I swear, first it's too chilly for the season and then a few days later, zap!, it's too hot for the season.  I'd like a little consistency, please, although this way I got to wear a cotton sweater, long jeans, shorts, and a tee shirt all within a few days.

I pulled out the patterns for 100 Acts of Sewing's Shirt no. 1 and Pants no. 1, got the fabric I bought last week, the scissors, and pins and did a little investment cutting.  Now when the urge to sew attacks I'll have a couple projects to entertain me.  I confess, when I took it all back downstairs (I cut on the living room floor) I sat right down and sewed one of the shirts together and sewed in the neckline binding.  Now all that's left is to hem the bottom and the sleeves.

There was a good amount of Hummingbird activity today.  Most of the time I just caught a glimpse of one zooming off from the feeder but this one stuck around long enough for me to get one shot.


I got to the knitting guild meeting tonight and realized that I'd finished the last preemie hat and hadn't started anything else so there was everyone else with something to do and I didn't have anything.  So I went into the living room and grabbed the first project bag I came to and started a cast sock.  I like this yarn.

Today's toss was a book that I got for a friend who was ill but I didn't have the chance to get it to her before it was too late.  Dammit.

The prompt today said to write the plot of a romantic comedy on a cruise ship.  So.  I put a young man running away from an unsatisfying stint in the corporate world to be a lounge singer on a cruise ship that's mostly full of seniors.  One granny brings her young granddaughter along but it's Granny who falls under the spell of a white-haired Lothario. Granddaughter is worried the guy's out for Granny's money so she and the singer cook up a plan to pretend to fall in love to distract Granny.  Lame, trite, and predictable but it's what my fevered brain came up with on short notice.


Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Woodpecker Visits

I was in the middle of my yoga routine this morning when a big beautiful Red-Bellied Woodpecker came to the feeders.  I took three photos and only one of them turned out--sort of.  I think it's a male but I can't be sure.  This is the biggest woodpecker that visits and I was happy to interrupt the chair pose to try to snap its picture.


A Downy Woodpecker also visited today.  You can tell it's a male by the red swoop across the back of his head.  The Downies are much more frequent feeder visitors than any other woodpeckers and they tend to stay a little longer so I'm luckier with pictures of them.

The lilacs are in as full bloom as they're going to get this season.  It smells very good standing there with the camera.


And the bleeding hearts are in full bloom too.  I'm glad that I put a little fence around them this year so that they don't flop over so much.  In the past the flowers would be nearer the ground because the stems were so long and heavy., this way is better.  I don't think the Hummingbirds visit the bleeding hearts but they come to the feeder from that direction.

Today's toss was a third and final pottery vase.  This one I bought on TJ Maxx's clearance rack.  Why do I remember where I bought it?  I have no idea, I just do.

The prompt today asked if I was reliable.  What a question.  I think I am reliable.  If I say I'll do something, I do it.  If I say I'll be somewhere, I'm there.  That's reliable, right?

Lala came for our first visit in 14 months.  We're both fully vaccinated so we even hugged.  I thinly sliced one of the teriyaki chicken breasts and we each built a nice salad with pieces of chicken on top.  Oh, and croutons, big garlicky croutons.  We had a nice long visit. Heaven.


Tuesday, May 18, 2021


I mowed the front yard this morning, mowed down all of the zillion dandelions, and then mowed the back yard in the afternoon.  As I mowed next to the retaining wall I noticed that one of the iris has buds on it.  Everything else is just greenery but this iris is getting ready to have flowers.  Hooray!

There are more flowers on the biggest blueberry bush too.  This bush is the only one with leaves and buds, the other two bushes have a few leaves and no buds but then I haven't given them their annual drink of fertilizer.  I should do that tomorrow.  If it doesn't rain.



Speaking of rain I decided to grill the chicken for tomorrow's lunch and a bunch of suppers today.  They're predicting rain tomorrow morning and with my luck it'd be pouring when I wanted to light the charcoal.  So I fired up the grill this morning and while the chicken cooked I mowed the front weed patch.

I bought a family pack of boneless breasts, marinated four of them and left three plain, so I'll have lots of chicken for salads and suppers and even some chicken salad if I decide to make some.  Hm, that sounds like a good plan.  Ooh, I could get up the grinder attachment for the Kitchen Aid mixer and make some chicken salad spread.  That'd be good.


The other thing I made today was a pan of rhubarb sauce.  I was going to mix up a batch of rhubarb pie filling using Grandma Angermeier's recipe but it calls for two egg yolks and I didn't want to waste the whites so I googled "rhubarb sauce" and found a simple recipe that was a snap to cook up.  It's just what I was hoping for.  I can have a few spoonfuls in a custard dish to satisfy my springtime rhubarb craving without the added calories of pie crust.

I finished the tiny May Preemie Hat #4 tonight and had yarn left over which is way better than running out of yarn before the hat is done.

Today's toss was another pottery vase leftover from my college art fair buying days.

The prompt today asked for a list of film genres.  Hm, let's see, children, rom-com, western, film noir, documentary, history, war movie, horror, sci fi, fantasy, musical... I'm sure there are many that I've neglected but I had a nice long list.  What that has to do with writing, I do not know, but I'm willing to play along.