Friday, September 30, 2011

There's a Box?

I live in a community that has CCandR's--which I appreciate most of the time since we have no rusty yachts parked in driveways or twenty-foot RVs hugging a property line and wrecking a view.  I admittedly chafe at restrictions on composting, clotheslines and other items I consider earth-friendly and green.  It's unbelievably hard to change them too.

So I just think outside the box.  Clotheslines aren't kosher?  Who says you need a line?  I have four patio chairs that are perfect for holding jeans or towels as they dry in the blinding sunshine.

In redecorating the laundry room I discovered that I'd stashed (and forgotten about) two multiple-skirt hangers that now hook over a sugar maple branch and are perfect for pinning up smaller items.  Like tees and undies. Which multiply quicker than bunnies during summertime's daily morning hikes and dry even more quickly in the Nevada afternoons.
I have plans to introduce the shiny silver metal to my can of Apple Green spray paint. All the better to camouflage my rule-bending hangers in the tree, my pretty.

Thanks to the Bombshells, I've finally managed to make quick-and-easy compost in our dry Nevada climate.   In the past, I've succeeded turning unwanted sod into compost by letting it sit in an old whiskey barrel through the winter.  In our desert climate, the trick seems to be keeping the materials damp enough to decompose.  Last Spring I tried using a reject trashcan which I turned regularly.  I had hopes.  F-A-I-L pretty much describes that result.

Armed with a hammer, some very long nails and leftover lumber from a fence that blew over at the Queen Mother's I cobbled a simple compost bin that's normally enclosed on all four sides but is easily opened at two ends.  Earlier this week, I shovelled a cubic yard of chicken-coop-goop turned compost into the raised beds.  And I've started a new pile of chicken straw which will soon be augmented by autumn leaves mulched into small pieces by the hens.  Multi-purpose, those girls!

Fortunately when these homes were built, backyard chickens were all but unheard of so no one thought of forbidding poultry.  The Bombshells are sort of flying under the CCandR radar (not that they can fly very well).  The coop is tucked invisibly away from any neighbors who might object and the neighbors who do know about it are well paid in fresh eggs.

I guess I'm sort of stretching the rules a bit, but I'm not breaking them.

Much.

I still use turn signals, drive the speed limit in school zones and brush my teeth twice a day.

Iconoclastically,


Sunday, September 25, 2011

My Guideposts - Week75

Some things I cannot change, but till I try I'll never know. 

~Elphaba Thropp

I've got a voice and I'm going to use it!
 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Summer Fun!

This was my smile for the day--enjoy!



Glad I finally figured out how to get the whole YouTube screen to show on my blog!  It used to be so easy but, with a little thought, I conquered the new template at last.  Now I've gotta change my header...

It's always something!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

My Guideposts - Week74

Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens.

~Jimi Hendrix
Reminder to a self who will be re-entering the schoolroom later this week: learning is a two-way street.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

My Guideposts - Week73

When we see how quickly life disappears, how even the longest life span is over in a flash, we realize how important it is for us to create the conditions that help us most quickly, most directly, and most strongly move toward true happiness.
~Sharon Salzberg


Happily yours,

Saturday, September 10, 2011

I Brought Summer With Me

I'm taking credit for the ninety-degree temperatures here in the Portland area. I mean where else did it come from?

In other thoughts from the Pacific Northwest:
  • I guess Farmers Markets are overpriced everywhere, not just Reno.  Earlier this week I plucked blackberries from a vine growing wild vs $3 a pint this morning?!  I used to rationalize it that I was subsidizing the farmers directly.  That was when we actually had a disposable income.
  • I can get my Winco fix here.  I was always a Raley's gal but once I discovered Winco's bulk section I changed over quickly.  Winco may be Oregon's best export!
  • Living in Reno it's rare to meet a fellow blogger.  Here I got to meet Heather from My Everyday Graces.  She's just as wonderful as I'd imagined! 
  • Blogging seems to be harder since the days go faster with a teen around.  Otherwise I'd have a post up about Heather already.  And how pretty her hens' eggs are (no offense to the Bombshells). And the Farmers Market.  And one about the house with the purple door.
  • I have a map showing bike paths--guess what I'm going to be doing next week?
  • I'm capable of waking up at 6 a.m.  It's worth getting up to enjoy the cool mornings as well as beating the rush hour on the school run.
  • I had two monrings of admiring Mt. Hood on one stretch of road.  I'm hoping for more if the smoke clears.  Fires are the worst part of summer-turning-to-autumn in the West.
  • I'm trying hard to focus on the delicious Gravenstein apples we bought this morning instead of missing the Balloon Races with my walking partners this morning.  The Glow.  Dawn Patrol.  Apple Crisp for dessert and applesauce this week is a pretty fair trade-off.  My family loves those Gravensteins!
That's a positive note to end on.  And the news from San Diego continues to be upbeat and encouraging.   Good news all around!


Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Doing the Happy Dance

Yes, surgery was successful!  The prognosis for recovery is excellent. We are breathing a collective sigh of relief and rejoicing that a very special husband, father and mentor has surmounted the first obstacle.

Would it be too much to ask for a smooth recovery too?  It was an awfully rough road getting to this point, and I for one think Pooh and the Professor deserve just a small break.

I'm smiling as I think of the Professor sawing logs as he rests comfortably in ICU and catches up on his sleep. As my Baptist friend from the yard sale would say "Praise the Lord!"

At peace with the Universe,

Warrior

Tick, tick, tick, tick, tick.

He never complains.  He stays positive.  He always is ready to laugh.   He commits wholeheartedly and never gives less than one hundred percent.  He's kind and caring and a great listener.  He's soft-spoken and low-key but he's a warrior at heart.  Warriors never give up.  Warriors have a goal and pursue it single-mindedly.

The Professor aka my BIL is in surgery right now. They've been operating for five and a half hours now and we know they are far from finished. We're all in this together, yet we're separate. I'm in Oregon teen-sitting while his parents are in San Diego. The teen's in school. The Queen Mother is in Nevada.  Pooh is waiting with the hospital lounge.  We're trying to keep busy with those necessary daily chores, but our united hearts and minds are hovering an operating room somewhere just north of San Diego.

We know he's in the very caring and competent hands of a top-notch surgical team. We know that St. Joan of Arc is lending him her indomitable spirit.  We know we're raining down as much love and positivity and faith as humanly possible.

It's just hard to wait.  Tick, tick, tick, tick.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Attention Seekers Anonymous

Howdy, my name is pogonip and I just lurve attention.

Have you noticed I don't post about my fairly pathetic vegetable garden?  I never rave about the five green beans in my fridge waiting for enough compadres to make more than a single-bite veggie.

Or the fact that I finally planted the two pumpkins that sprouted?  Even though I'm fully aware that snowballs have a better chance.  What a great procrastinator's post that could be!  Complete with photos of their hopeful little pumpkin blossoms now and then the cruel shot of them after our first hard frost. 

No,  I post about the flowers that delight my heart. And apparently the bigger they are, the more I like them.

It's hard to find anything flashier than peonies in the spring.  Ahhh, those huge buds promise even larger flowers.  And deliver the goods.


Of course if you were to find something even less shy and reclusive than the double peonies it would probably be a Nelly Moser clematis.  One that I just happen to have growing by our front porch.

The one that has total strangers stopping to ask me if it's real.
 
I apparently chose flowers for my garden based on how flashy they are. The Oranges and Lemons rose, while not large, also has a certain flair that grabs your eyeballs and won't let loose.


Fortunately, Strawberry Swirl hardy hibiscus is more eye candy than eye grabber.

Yeah, it's sorta huge and pretty much the only thing you notice blooming right now. But is that a problem?  It's wonderful to look up from my sink and swoon over her loveliness all the way across the yard.

So, am I the only one that has this little large problem?  Does size matter?  Is bigger really better?   
Or is it just more fun!
Not-so-subtly,
from a tres petite,
Come visit other gardeners (who hopefully don't write paragraphs like that last one, lol)  at the Tuesday Garden Party.