Friday, March 30, 2007

Walkin' On Sunshine


That's the song on the radio as I drove home for lunch. It just fit my mood perfectly with a mild day and flowers growing everywhere in the yard.
Hyacinths, creeping phlox, violas, daffodil remnants and the odd persistent dandelion.
We've had hyacinths from our first year here, but it wasn't until last year that I bought a Costco-sized bag of hyacinths bulbs in all the colors of the rainbow. They have settled in and are rewarding us with a joyous burst of color.
I fell in love with creeping phlox soon after moving to northern Nevada and just thought the pink variety was perfect. This was before I found out how prickly the leaves can be as they age, but now I remind myself not to get prickly myself as birthday after birthday rolls around. I have fewer than before, and I'm quite strict with their size and cut them back severely, but every Spring I am reminded of how much I really do like them. I've since found wild species growing and blooming in restrained pastels along my wildland hikes. Unfussy, drought-resistant and colorful in March.
Violas, johnny-jump-ups, and pansies have always delighted me. Pansies are particular about too much water, so I focus on the violas which are both perennial and provide me with interesting volunteers from their unrestrained and unsupervised hybridizing. Their cousins, the johnny-jump-ups, have such great patterns and unique color combinations that I can't resist buying them. They look great with all the Spring bulbs and provide color till the snow flies.
The very healthy dandelion is so close to the weeping birch trunk and usually surrounded by crocus leaves, so it escapes most of my herbicide attacks. I've tried painting RoundUp on its leaves, but it just laughs and keeps on growing. It keeps me busy picking off its flowers before they can go to seed and spread. Such is a gardener's life though. A little work, a little persistence, a little patience and a lot of enjoyment.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Yellow


My favorite color!


The scrapbook page isn't done, but at least I have one photo for it and I have the journalling drafted although I haven't picked out the perfect font yet.
May I say I just love Spring?! Daffodils and hyacinths and violas bursting with blooms. Even the weather is exuberant. My lawn is emerald and I will actually NEED TO MOW IT. SOON.
I'm in heaven.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Just Wait Five Minutes

We've gone from a fabulous (and unusual) 70 degrees to snow within hours. It is so Reno. We always say, just wait five minutes and the weather will change.

Although we may talk about it, we know that we can't let the weather stop us around here, or else nothing would ever get done. Mostly we can dress for it and then ignore it as we go about our activities.

Today might have been an exception. Our first scheduled soccer game was this afternoon. We knew Saturday that we would have to wear warm long sleeved turtlenecks under the jerseys and probably have hats and gloves. So we were prepared, sort of.

Turned out that this morning was lovely, a little breezy around lunch, gusts of winds that had us all exclaming by afternoon recess, dark clouds by early afternoon, rain by rush hour and full out snow shortly thereafter.

So we got soaked to the bone by the rain, chilled to our marrow by the winds, and frozen more solidly than a popsicle by the snow on the field. And it was a "friendly"--which doesn't even count toward league standings!

Guess it makes us look like real athletes that we'd even turn out for a game in weather like that instead of a bunch of girlie girls? Or does it just make us look crazy?

Anyway, it's a fast mover and if you live east of Nevada (pretty much everyone) get yourself prepared because it's heading your way. Enjoy!

Friday, March 23, 2007

From Above

Thundering Voice (reminiscent of the Wizard of Oz only coming from above): What were you thinking!

Me (meekly): I just wanted Spring Break.

Thundering Voice: Did I not give you nine whole days with no schedules or alarm clocks?

Me (whining): Well, yeah, but I wanted to go South.

Thundering Voice: South! Did I not give you the warmest, most perfect Spring weather that Reno has ever had.

Me: Yeah, I guess.

Thundering Voice (growing ominous): You guess! Did the temperatures not break records? Did you not frolic in your garden. Did I not cause the flowers to bloom especially for your happiness?

Me: Well, yeah.

Thundering Voice: I showed you friends who also stayed home during Spring Break and were joyful. Did you follow their example? Did you not take the hint from Jenn's email about Berkshire weather?

Me: (silent)

Thundering Voice: No! Still I heard whining and petty complaints. Perhaps I did not give you enough. I shall give you more and see if you appreciate what you have. (Quiet Cosmic Sigh.)

The person playing me will now begin to feel her sinuses grow heavy. Her energy levels will drop. Soon in Act II we will see her take to her bed with excruciating headaches that no amount of medicines will alleviate. Before Act II ends she will begin to wheeze and breathing will hurt.

Most of Act III will take place with our protagonist flat on her back, thinking of how nice the weather is and how her garden is calling her to finish pruning the fruit trees. She will wish she had appreciated sunny skies and happy friends and bright flowers. She will sadly think of her nasty disposition and know she deserves her chastisement. She will regret wasting the beginning of her vacation as she watches the last four days of it disappear forever.

***
The Thundering Voice got my attention--I can be a little dense about my blessings sometimes. I take back every negative thought and pout. I will be a good girl. I will be happy about finally returning to work; I will be grateful for a husband who brought me lots of fluids to drink; I will accept the good things in my life and not think I deserve so much more.

(And in the future if I am not content, I will be discontent quietly and with grace.)

I learned my lesson.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Sinus 1, Pogonip 0

Thank God the Pack won their game in overtime, even if Fazekas fouled out, because I'm not winning my war.

Who knew sinuses could hold 50 lbs. of fluid?

I'm fighting back--I feel like a water truck right now. At least I'm vertical for the first time today.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Colors of the Day

I have to clean my (formerly) lovely red Forester today--inside and out. The circle window above my computer is driving me insane with its dusty winter coating of grime, so I'll crawl out on the roof and have it glistening. And although I love soccer, today's first practice of the season has to be planned, and that's jsut the start of my biggest time-stealer.

For myself, I'm going to start on the color scrapbook page today. Colors are so evocative and incredibly personal that a page about my personal favorites will tell something about me. It seemed a little selfish to scrapbook about myself at first. Then I realized that we have almost no photos of the family photographer--I could just disappear if I didn't do something about it. My kids and future grandkids might appreciate knowing my story someday. Or they might not and I might just do it for myself...

My latest issue of Memory Makers got me inspired and there is a notepad next to my side of the bed with colorful ideas jotted down late at night. And I may not be able to currently access many of my craft supplies, but my scrapbooking goodies are easily accessible in the desk.

I'll be a good girl and complete my list of chores first. Then some time for me. Dare I hope for a dollhouse day and something creative to share? Keep your fingers crossed. I'll stay focused!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Blogoversary

I can't believe that it's been a whole year since I began Pogonip eNVy. I've managed to squeeze in 64 posts--some weeks were leisurely, some weren't. Sometimes I had something to say, sometimes I didn't and said it anyway.

I discovered Blogger out of frustration. I like composing in HTML, but troubleshooting the unexpected results in Large ISP-Land was more effort than I wanted to expend. I've loved the convenience of Blogger every since.

My favorite blogs are the Kharma yarns. When you have the world's cutest puppy, it's hard not to enthuse. She's not getting any less delightful so she'll probably continue to be the star of the show (said the loving mommy). The agility jumps and beginning weave poles are in the yard, so the successes and challenges of dog training will start popping up. The K dog is looking pretty sweet with all the brushing she's been getting in the ongoing effort to free us of dog hair. The dog photo show will continue.

And then there was the dollhouse decorating extravaganza. I look back and am amazed at how well it turned out. I can look at my scrapbooking pile and see how many false starts it took until the right combinations of paper evolved. I love the little country farmhouse and I'm looking forward to watching the Princess play with her dollhouse this summer. It was one project that GOT DONE.

My garden and the weather received a fair amount of attention too. With our record breaking temperatures and all the vacation time I've been able to spare to clean up, the backyard chronicles will make an appearance again. It's so nice not to have leaves everywhere and the lawn actually turned green in one day. Really.

Pretty ordinary stuff. No apologies though--that's my life. Like it says up there at the top: "It's the little things that make life enjoyable".

I probably would have blogged more had it not been for my favorites' list of blogs that I regularly read. They are a thoughtful, funny, touching group of moms (and gentledad)--all of whom are far more talented than I could hope to be. Chana, Amber, Jenn, Jen, Ree, Wood and Dutch are such a part of my life. I log on and catch up and find that bedtime slipped by as I visited with my friends from around the country. There are only so many hours in a day and I'm afraid I've neglected my blog for theirs sometimes. I'm inspired by their ability to parent and work and still blog so regularly.

My mantra during year two--"If they can do it, so can I."

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Trip

It's Spring Break. At least, I think it is. Because I firmly believe Spring Break involves continental breakfasts, beds that other people fix, and towels that other folks pick up for you and I'm stuck here at home. There are good reasons to be stuck here, but they would not be my reasons, given my druthers.

I really wanted to go South. To Albuquerque to see the Eldest and The Girls. To tease Liyah and bring a housewarming present to Deni. To give Pierre the hugs he didn't get in December. To visit Walnut Canyon in the daylight this time on the way down. To see if the cafe in Gallup still has the best chile rellenos going--the kind that make you break out in sweat as your tastebuds tap dance. To swing north into the O'Keefe landscapes of northern NM with my oil pastels in tow. To tour Mesa Verde. And maybe, in my wildest dreams, have enough time to return to Canyonlands.

Instead, today we dropped by Winco to grab more peppercorns and turbinado sugar...and the Arizona license plate on the Honda parked next to us is as close as I'm getting to my vacation wish.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Sunrise


Somebody woke up at 5 a.m. and couldn't get back to sleep. Somebody got to see the sunrise though.
Then somebody sorted through old patterns--patterns from when we were dating, patterns for nieces, patterns for men (not a large category), maternity patterns, Halloween costume patterns, and a few miscellaneous craft patterns. The pattern box was pretty empty when I finished.
Then I went through large boxes of quilting fabrics. I realized that if I just cut up the fabric for their intended uses, I'd cut down on boxes. So, time to cut up all the blue jean fabric from family jeans collected over the past 15 years and get ready to sew them into a crazy quilt. Or two. And time to fuse the backing onto the tee shirts and begin on making each boy a tee shirt quilt. That gets rid of three boxes right there. Even if I don't start sewing right away.
I also glanced through some cherished old quilt magazines and came up with some ideas for my (rather limited) stash of flannels. Perhaps a Christmas quilt since they are all reds and greens? Then there are some nice graphic quilt blocks that would use up some of my "clothes too old to wear but too beloved to throw away so keep them for quilt projects" stash. And lastly, I was inspired by a yoyo quilt to begin using all those bitty remnants that are just not my color or style or just defy any category but that I can't throw away. I'm making a circle template for cutting and one for the 1/4 inch sewing line. My TV time is about to get very productive!
Then I went back to bed and pulled the covers over my head and slept for another three hours.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Spring Back

How lovely for my inner clock to wake me at its accustomed weekday time and find that it's an hour later and I've managed to sleep in without even trying.

I love Daylight Savings Time. I wake up with the sunrise anyway (no getting out of that with an east-facing bedroom). That does not mean that I have enough control to leap out of bed one second earlier than I have to, light or no light.

My taxes have done their work and done it well. The powers-that-be have not only given me back my PDT, but also started it earlier this year. And they miraculously synchronized it with my Spring Break so I don't have to get up for work an hour earlier tomorrow. I'm not a big fan of Washington D.C. right about now, but at least they got one thing right this year. No make that this decade. (But that's another story.)

Days are now longer. I now have time to garden after work and walk the dog and exercise. It's truly amazing what a difference one hour can make. But I guess anyone who's waited that whole long 60-second minute for the microwave to ding knows how time can be stretched.

What do parents in the poor benighted deprived non-daylight-saving-time states do? Hey, kids don't do clocks, we all know that. They wake up when they are ready and that's usually linked to sunrise. The return of daylight savings has always meant that I can stop hating my boys for rising at some uncivilized hour. I think of daylight savings as a necessary government mandate to bring the rest of the population in line with the lives that the important part of the country (parents of young children) were already living.

Friday, March 09, 2007

The Lab Coat

Just in case you were thinking that Kharma was perfect...I have two words for you. HAIR EVERYWHERE.

Car, sofa, black pants, new quilt, coffee table.

All our previous dogs had lovely long hair and shed their coats in large clumps. Kharma apparently throws off each hair individually. It's one of the hazards of getting a mixed-breed puppy. Kharma has the energy of the aussie and border collie (good for agility), she is mellow like the golden retriever (wonderful), but she has my two least favorite features of labs--some of the slobber and all of the shedding hair.

We did hope for another "clumper" that is characteristic of aussie and goldens. You just pull feathery chunks out and pick up the occasional hairball floating on the carpet. It's strange to think that the long haired dogs are generally easier to pick up after.

It took quite a while to figure out that Kharma was even shedding. We knew we were seeing hair on our clothes, but not that she was sneakily depositing hair on our carpet of the same general color.Now we get full vacuum cleaner bags after only a few weeks and have to vacuum the sofa and recliner regularly along with the rug. She's not crazy about getting brushed, but it has to be part of her daily beauty routine. The seats in the car have to protected by towels when she's left in there while we shop or else we'd be wearing more dog hair than Cruella DeVille.

We love her anyway.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Winds of Change

Change can be so frustrating.

I didn't really want to change to New Blogger. I was very happy with Old Blogger.

I looked at New Blogger. I even tried it with the blog I set up for the girls' soccer team. It was okay. I could have done without having to sign up with a Google Account. Some of the drag-and-drop features didn't work and I still haven't figured them out. So, each time I signed on to post I blew right past the offer to switch to New Blogger and signed in on Old.

So imagine my delight and joyous exclamations a few weeks ago, when I could find no way to log on without changing my account over. Typical for me, I just went away so see if the problem would disappear. No luck. Then I tried several ways tonight to work my way around it. Still no luck.

So I have given up, capitulated, surrendered, given in, succumbed. I guess users of free blogger space can't be too choosy.

I still love Blogger and Blogspot. I would have liked to continue in my comfortable old rut and I would have liked a choice in the matter. However, I see that having dual versions running alongside each other would probably not have been a good idea.

So, I'm back. I have lots of blogging to catch up on...Erkie moved, spring is sometimes here, projects are being worked on, pictures have been taken. Come back and visit.