"We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike." ~Maya Angelou

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Happy Thursday: Hip, Hip

As refreshing as summer rain comes a day in mid-winter, a jewel in a setting of dead-leaf browns and biting winds.  Yesterday, January 27, my Great Grandfather's birthdate, dawned bright with sunshine and warmed into the 80s.  I walked out in search of beauty, as I often do after three months of cold and gloomy days.  I found these two brave souls grinning beside new shoots of daffodil.

In the silent fountain, barely moving, I spied these three golden beauties out for a swim,  looking for something new and exciting to snack on. A bug perhaps? Anything with wings and wiggly feet? Ah, not yet my dears. Patience. Algae and fish food for now, alas.

      There were a few fresh green leaves sprouting from the base of one of the mums, optimists if I ever saw one, and the ballerina shoots of Dutch Iris, always up way too early, frost nipped already.  Each Spring I think to myself, 'I should lift these after they have died back so they will come up later next year.' Every year.  But by the time they have died back there are fresh tomatoes to pick and can, bright yellow squash to steam for lunch and beets, red as rubies, begging to be pulled and pickled. The lifting never happens.  The Iris manage to bloom beautifully anyway, here beside a memory of days long past. They have adapted, apparently. Adaptation... an important skill which it would behoove us all to add to our repertoires.

     There followed quite a bit of walking over crunchy grass, looking for signs or color.  Not much to be seen, I must admit. A few pink buds on the Quince bushes, getting ready. Sparrows twittered in the tangle of Mock Orange, giddy with the fair weather. At this time of year it becomes ridiculously easy to find all the eggs that went unfound during the hunts of Easter last.  The Easter Bunny must of thought this was an especially lucky spot. Here it is, January, and still they lay here, waiting to be spotted and clutched in a small, warm hand. I left them. Who knows?
        The young Morning Glory I transplanted beside the chicken wire Tipi is still green and has one pale green hand reaching upward toward the wire.  Soon the entire structure will be covered and fragrant with honey. A home for bees and a shady spot for someone younger than I to sit with a cat and watch the world go by.  
   The new gardens were crying for water.  I know treated water is not the best for them but it is better than nothing and nothing is what we have been getting from the sky lately.  Every plant and bulb got a good drink, all round the circle.  I see the roses will need to be trimmed but not yet. 

      As I watered and sang, talked to the cats, noticed furred heads of Indian Blanket wobbling bravely in winter sun, this sweet bell played the counterpoint, random silver notes winging skyward.  (The cat plays this bell with her tail as she walks underneath it. I have witnessed her doing it more than once. Love it!)                                                                                   Madame Wisteria, her hair in wild disarray, is badly in need of staking.  I so hope she is able to bloom this year after coming so close last Spring and then freezing on the very night she was set to open. "Don't count your chickens (or your Wisteria blossoms) before they hatch."                   I am eager to see the new tulips my sister and I planted late last Fall.  They are planted plenty deep and not a one is poking its head up  yet.  I hope they make.  Some were tucked in, green with mold, as late as early December. We'll see.  Bulbs are resilient. Bulbs laugh at mold. 
     I decided to brick up the small south opening under the house. A 'Something' as been taking up residence under the south bathroom, much to our chagrin, and I hope this seals it out, as opposed to in.  Much better.  I'll check it again today to see if there are signs of attempted forced entry. 
      Maggie's Wood needed water as well so I watered the east half and will do the other side today. Our friends the beavers have ventured into her wood now and are chewing on the SoapBerry trees.  Those are volunteer and doing quite well, naturally.  All the ones I have planted and babied are wrapped in chicken-wire and show no signs of attempted munching.  I went to town later and purchased some new shotgun shells.  Since I can't seem to get hold of the game warden I guess I'll take matters into my own hands again.  We are west of the Mississippi after all.  Pioneer justice.


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