Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Yesterday, according to the Humane Society of Missouri's records, my sweet baby girl turned 12.  She is in excellent physical health and demands a walk each day.

Here she is, many years ago, after we hiked through Taum Sauk Park and made it to the highest peak in Missouri (hence the plaque). She had also just finished chasing a rabbit.

And yesterday? Forced to wear a velvet bow and a sign.
I can't even begin to describe how important she is to me and how much I love her. Maggie became "mine" when my ex-fiance ditched me and said that I either took her or returned her to the pound. I became a dog owner.
Maggie and I have driven all over Missouri, exploring state parks and natural wonders like Pickle Springs, the Devil's Posthole, Elephant Rocks and the Katy Trail.  She has been my co-pilot on the long 14-hour drive to and from eastern Pennsylvania.
("Welcome to Pennsylvania! Now drive for another 3 hours.")
I guess people who have children can relate to how I feel about Maggie.  She is one of the most important things in my life and I can't bear the thought that someday she won't be with us anymore, looking out the window, ignoring the neighbor's cats that frequent the yard, angling for a walk or begging for bacon grease.

On a less wistful note, I found these today:
I think this is brunnera? Teensy tiny blue flowers.
On the other side of the steps, one of my anemones or windflowers bloomed. I didn't know they would be so petite and sweet. you have a sewing machine? Do you want some new spring clothes?
Check out the Swap O-Rama 2010 at the History Museum on April 10th!  Emily, the organizer, is hard-up for some volunteers to run machines to help folks refashion the afternoon away. Plus, the clothes swap! You know I love new clothes, and if they're free, it's even better.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Self-Pitying Post! Be Warned!

Today sucked. I had thought my good mood returned yesterday, and things today were going well until I went grocery shopping.
1. My grocery bill was less than 50 cents OVER the balance in our account. I was so embarrassed: I've never been that person who has to put stuff back. Did I put back the Take 5 bars? Hell no! The dog food can wait a few days! Why should I suffer a lack of chocolate when...

2. My serger has been stitching funny and I can't get it adjusted quite right. I was almost done with my Secret Project and then the damn needle fell out. After twenty minutes last night of fussing with it, I was sick of thread tensions and loopers.  At that point, I said, "fuck it" and turned it off and put the cover over it.

3. Tilted my hot iron to see what was sticking on the bottom and poured hot iron water all over my hand.

4.  Decided to cut out bird bits for bird pot holders. Brought up bin of Asian fabrics, opened it up and was overwhelmed with choices and couldn't decide where to start.

5. Motherfucking squirrel(s) dug up my planters of lettuce on the front porch.

6. Don't even get me started on the "I'm pretty sure I don't want kids, cause I like to be alone and I like a clean house, so why do I feel so bitter about people who are pregnant?" conundrum!

Waaaa.....poor little me.......

Since I just read an article about negative self talk,  I have to balance out the bad.....

1. My friend Kelly came over and I sent her home with 2 bags of fabric that will be made into super cute bags.

2.  Mushroom and olive pizza is cooking in the oven.

3. I found these today:

4. Last year on March 28, I took this picture:
Here is the same view today, with no snow, a robin and bird bath:
He was splashing around and enjoying himself immensely. Anyone want some money plant that's coming up all around the bird bath?

5. I had the presence of mind to NOT pull up a mystery plant that I first thought was a weed. After further investigation, said plants are either Grecian windflowers or anemones. 

6. My sweet little arthritic Maggie will be 12 on March 30. She enjoyed a long walk today and some fine smells on the warm-ish breeze. Notice the pillaged planters flanking her.

Let's hope for a better day tomorrow!  Now for some pizza and Sunday flyers.

Thursday, March 18, 2010


There are two pairs of cardinals that hang out in my yard. Here, one of them sits atop the bird feeder pole.
 While his lady friend and a robin wait for him to eat.

The downy woodpecker is pretty brave and doesn't give a rat's ass about who is king of the feeder. I think there might be two of them also.
I cut some forsythia and brought it inside to bloom. My only regret is that I won't be here this weekend to see it open!

The sunshine and balmy temps of the past few days have really done a job on my winter blahs. I didn't think I was mellow, but I was noticeably happier yesterday. It might have been the odor of roasting coffee from Chauvin Coffee Company wafting through the air, or the delicious smell coming from the Vietnamese's kitchen next door. 
Either way, I'm happy spring is here and am excited to drive to Chicago tomorrow to see old and old-ish friends. Dan Ryan, here I come!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Digging In The Dirt, 2010

FINALLY I was able to get the garden started!
I am on spring break this week, and after a day of self-imposed sloth-ery, I worked outside all day yesterday.
Here's what I found in the compost bin:
Wee little mice. There must have been about 20 of them, fleeing like it was the Titanic! Glad I'm not scared of them.  It amazes me how they live all winter. Why don't they freeze?  And now I know why the neighbor's cats (Ginny and Peanut) sit, mesmerized by the bin.

As you South Citians know, most of our backyards have a cement walk flanked by a thin strip of grass and the typical chain link fence. Since we moved in almost 5 years ago, I have been slowly killing said strip of grass with a combination of cardboard, leaves, newspapers and whatnot. This past year was the last killing session I had to do. Behold the loveliness:
The green bit is a clump of magenta hollyhocks that I hope will bloom there this year. I'll put tomatoes, and squash in here, and give up on my dream of a corn patch. Last year was very traumatic for me, corn-growing-wise, thanks to the local wildlife.

Crocus are blooming, and there's one daffodil out front that is ready to pop.  I cut some forsythia branches to force inside.
Last year, we had snow on March 26th, but it doesn't feel like that today. Warm, balmy breezes, a dog sleeping in the yard and a corned beef simmering away. Perfect, perfect. 
Days like today make me feel I am blessed.