Friday, May 13, 2011

My Lucky "Friday the 13th" Birthday!

I hadn't planned on posting today, but just had to get on here and share my birthday joy with all of you... look what I got!! A new, totally adorable garden kitty!!! I wasn't expecting this at ALL, and actually shrieked with joy when I saw her waiting for me outside the back door (yes, I confess I am the sort of person who shrieks over garden art, lol).

What a wonderful day this has been, Friday the 13th and all. Several weeks ago, I declared that it would be a lucky Friday the 13th, in special observance of my birthday, and so far it has been. Especially since I didn't get a speeding ticket on the way to my birthday lunch. That would have put a serious damper on things. I work for a company that gives you your birthday off as a holiday, so I've been able to play all day. This included a trip to Asiana Grand Buffet, home of the "free buffet on your birthday" special, where I ate my weight in sushi and wontons.

I love birthdays. I've never understood friends and acquaintances who get depressed about birthdays, or the dread and regret they express about becoming some unwanted age. I mean, birthdays are fun. There's cake, and ice cream, and you get to be Queen for a Day! What's not to love? And I love having been born in May, when the flowers in my garden are bright and beautiful, and the weather is perfect for spending the day outside playing in the dirt.

When I was younger, I assumed that the happy anticipation I always feel as my special day approaches would one day fade. Maybe when I reached 30. Or 40. But this was number 48, and it hasn't faded yet. Maybe at 50? I hope not!

So guess what? New birthday Garden Kitty needs a name! Any suggestions?

Look at her sandals! Aren't they cute??

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Springtime Hiatus

First of all, a follow up to my recent post about Lady helping me with the red Knock Out rose shrub that got crushed by the falling screen. That screen ended up falling not once, but twice (now the screen is tied to the fence). Poor rose bush. But, never one to waste a bloom, I salvaged some of the damaged stems I had to clip, and tucked them into little vases here and there around the house. But alas, even some of those were doomed. A bag of groceries inadvertently got set on this one.

Oh well! I didn't waste too much time worrying about it. Seems like now every time I start to fret about some little thing, the images of the neighborhoods in Tuscaloosa Alabama come to mind, and I realize that one broken bush is not that big a deal.

In April and May, I am at my height of gardening nirvana and want to spend every waking moment outdoors. I will keep on digging in the dirt even after the sun has disappeared and I have to resort to turning on all the outside lights to finish up the project of the day. I think if I knew I had one last day on earth, I'd spend it planting petunias.

During the first part of April, I tried to keep up my schedule of regular posting, and visiting my favorite blogs at least every other day. But the tug to do other things has just been too great. So I've decided to give myself permission to take a break and enjoy my springtime diversions.

I'll still be blogging and visiting, but my "computer time" will only be once a week for awhile. Once the weather heats up and its so humid we feel like we're living in a terrarium, I'll be back indoors, happily sitting at my computer in the air conditioning. For now though, I'll be outside with dirt on my hands. Hope you're all enjoying a lovely spring!

Look whose photo I got!! :)

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Top Secret Spy Photography

If you have followed this blog for any length of time, you know that I LOVE to take pics of Lady, Lucky, and Lucy. Dogs and cats make such great subjects for the camera. I love to photograph my garden and the wonders of nature too, so those tend to make an appearance in my blog as well. Blogging is great, because it actually gives me a reason to take lots of pics. And now there's a new dog in the family. "Yipppeee!" I said to myself, "it will be such fun to chronicle her first weeks and months with the pack!"


I mentioned in one of those first posts that Katie was camera shy and hard to photograph. But I really believed that once she got through the transition period, she'd be more comfortable overall, and that fear of the camera would subside.

Wrong again.

The only way to photograph this dog is by using super secret stealth techniques. If she gets any suspicion that you either a) have a camera hidden somewhere on your body, or b) might actually be trying to take a picture of her.... *POOF* she's gone! 

So far, I've had the best luck with a cell phone and/or when she's sleeping. It helps if the room is dark too. And then I have to quickly ditch the camera and pretend to be doing something else when she looks up. This super secret stealth photography borders on comical, and needless to say doesn't make for the best quality photographs. On the bright side though, I have a feeling I'm going to have an extensive collection of "Katie sleeping" photos.

Katie sleeping.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Dilemma, Divided By 2

A dilemma divided by 2 is only half a dilemma. So therefore much smaller and easier to manage. This appears to be Lady's philosophy, as she never lets me face any dilemma or difficulty alone. I continue to be surprised and amused by her intuition and desire to "help."

Over the weekend, I'd been admiring the Knock Out rose in the corner of the yard. Laden with dozens of ridiculously red blooms, it has never been as spectacular as it is this year. As soon as I saw it on Saturday morning, my instinct was to run and get the camera, but I forced myself to resist. I have so many photos of plants and flowers that when I'm dead and gone, future generations are going to think I knew no people at all, only flowers.

On Sunday evening I stepped out into the yard again, this time to a horrible sight. The heavy screen I'd placed in front of the propane gas tank the day before had blown over and squashed the beautiful rose bush. In shock, I yelled something like "ACCKK!" and went running to its rescue. So did Lady. I'm not even sure why I ran, it's not like 3 additional seconds of being squashed was going to make a difference - but ran I did. I grabbed the screen and lifted it off, and that's when I became consciously aware that Lady had run to the rose bush with me, and was still at my side. Ears and tail up, on "high alert" status. And as I wrestled with the screen, trying to get it back into the proper position her nose was pressed to its edge working the scent, as if trying to determine what evil lurked there to have distressed me so.

Ladybelle remained by my side as I attempted to resuscitate the flattened bush. I propped some branches back up, and clipped the broken ones, eventually restoring it to some semblance of its former self, albeit slightly more 'horizontal.' All the while Lady stayed close, ever ready to assist as needed. What a good dog.

See? All better!