Welcome to the Jungle

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The garden is still very happy so far this year. The nasturtiums are still blooming in all but the most sun-exposed parts of the yard. They’re generally crispy by this time of year. I went a little nuts with seeds this year and have been a little surprised by which have been the most successful.

Cornflowers
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Cornflowers
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And more cornflowers

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It’s nice to sit outside with all the flowers blooming everywhere. We also have a hummingbird who has claimed the yard and guards it assiduously. When we’re sitting out in the evening he zooms back forth the length of the patio to make sure there are no intruders and everyone knows that it’s his yard. I enjoy having a yard that hummingbirds think are worth guarding.

Legacies

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I order most of the coins I work with off of eBay and this happens a lot. I order a batch of coins from someone and they come in an envelope covered in a wide variety of stamps. Every time I get one of these I wonder if I’m getting someone’s legacy. Someone’s family member collected coins and stamps and after they’re gone a family member has to figure out what to do with the collection. They end up selling it off bit by bit on eBay. In some cases they use the stamps to ship the coins. I have no idea if that’s actually what happens, but whenever I get a package like this I always think that it is. A batch of beautiful Greek Athena coins came in this envelope.

Traffic Monster

That would be me. I am the most impatient driver. That’s one reason I try to be early. It’s much more relaxing. I act like everyone is in my way if there’s a possibility I could be late. I plan my drive with traffic patterns in mind. Stay out of the right lane in that area because you pass three schools and there are lots of pedestrians. Stay out of the left lane on that section because traffic always piles up there. Get past the school bus before it stops or you’ll have to stop and wait for a LOT of school kids to get on.

But the area near where I work drives me crazy(er). There’s one signal that has me pounding the steering wheel in frustration. The left turn signal lasts long enough to let three cars through, if you start when it turns green. Which apparently no one does. It seems like everyone is either on their phone, asleep at the wheel or have the reaction time of a snail. They also don’t read the traffic sign, which is Left turn yield on green, and I often have to wait through three signals before I get to turn. So I sit there flailing and screaming like a mad monkey and hoping that no one actually hears me.

I made a rock

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I spent my extra day off making a rock out of hypertufa, a lighter-weight cement mix. I’d tried making one before, but it was unsuccessful. This time I did a little more research before I went to work. It still may not work out right, but at least it looks like I wanted it to look. As long as it doesn’t crack in curing I think it’ll be OK. I’m not sure how much lighter than regular cement it will actually be and I’m hoping that the framework will hold up to the weight. The framework is chicken wire stuffed with paper, so it’s really mostly hollow. I was going to make two of them, but it was a little more work than I wanted to do in one day and I thought maybe I should wait to see if it will work before I make another one.

Oh, that’s why

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A couple of months ago the silver dichondra in my atrium started to looked really ragged, missing a lot of leaves. Because it’s been a rainy year and I had slug problems in other parts of the yard I thought slugs were the cause. Yesterday I was at my workbench and saw movement in the atrium out of the corner of my eye. This visitor was plucking the leaves off of the dichondra. It’s one of a pair that I’ve seen in the yard lately. They often make me anxious by hopping around on the ground when we’re out there with the cats. A bird on the ground never fails to rivet their attention.