It is a delight to be the spouse of a hard working, joy-filled, dedicated man.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

How the Heck!?! or Quick, Before a Week Goes By!

Warning: Pictures on this blog often have nothing to do with what I am talking about and sometimes they illustrate my words nicely, today they do both.
One of my favorite posts of recent, (A Flag On the Ceiling and a Promise Kept ) I found had been turned from a post (it actually had two comments) into a draft. How the heck did that happen?
Bucha know, I think that I will say that that will be my last promise kept. No, I mean that I won't be taking in any more awards or tags for quizzes into my dark secret life.

Mr. Howell would like some of that Otter Pop please.

I don't really deserve any awards and I have no dark secret life. What you see is what you get. But mostly because they, awards and such, take me a century to attend to and I go to bed with that same "you have a paper due in a couple of days" gut ache I used to have when I was a student. Sometimes assignments are not helpful.

Aksel says, "No one goes in unless they come out with an Otter Pop,
and not a banana flavored one either."

But iffen' you really want to know something, ask, I'll tell, eventually. But it will be with a huge long verbose explaination. That I am good at. I can't get through anything without a lot of words. Must be why I'm not all that into Facebook. I don't have bumperstickers on my car and I don't do Faceboook very well at all.

Steph and the boys enjoying Otter Pops
in the Bedouin style tenting I have up around the house to keep it cool.

I will say, that in a day or two I will have a Facebook prompted scathing review of nonsensical and poor use of words. And folks, its not just a word choice nit pick. You say something to kids, young men and women (known by some people as teenagers) and nine times outta ten the crap sticks and it fosters a mess. We need to be mindful of what we set up in young people. Luke 17:1-2, (oh and the warning is also in Matthew and Mark just in case you think it is a fluke)

Mind you I am not talking about being bold with the fledgling adults and saying harsh stuff to them, they often need, especially in this current its-all-about-the-kids culture, to hear that the universe does not revolve around them and they are not Queen or King Bee or a little Prince or Princess. I am talking about words that.... Oh what the heck I said a future post. This one is about catching up (again with the ketchup), the heat wave and garden stuff and other loose ends not starting another one.

King Brug standing guard at Dirt's Arbor Entrance to the Croquet Lawns.

Several of you asked what a brug was. Brug is shorthand for Brugmansia. You know, like Mum for Chrysanthemum. In actuality it is a water guzzling, fertilizer slurping monster as bad if not worse than tomatoes in small pots.

A Brug is a big fat baby when it comes to winter so not only am I its food and beverage slave all summer, but then I have to give it indoor lodging half the year. Sheesh! And since I love to have a crowd around me at all times, tossing roasted somethings here and pouring a porter there, I don't just have one of these I have five.

King Brug's courtier, Peach, actually beginning to bloom
(where's your bloom KB?)

Their leaves are quite holey this year because the uninvited Leaf Hopper Gangs have moved in in record numbers, bikes, leathers and all, but at least this year they will actually bloom outside. Last year I brought them in but didn't tuck them in bed for a couple of months because they had just budded in late September.

Next year's goal, get these lazy party boys to bloom in June or at least July!

If you have been a good "Dear Reader" and read my side board, you will know that I do a lot of "next year..." this time of year. For me August is "evaluation month" and September is actual "sit down and map out next year month" making September the real "New Year," resolutions and all, in my book. (Yes, if it were not for the ridiculousness of current academia Lanny would still be a student. I could address this issue right after I crack the whip on silly numbheaded "we wanna be cool" parents.)

Fragrant Cloud Hybrid Tea Rose in the Lawn Border Garden

Ahhh what better time that one's birthday month to go around and beat the tar out of one's self for the stupid stunts they tried to get away with. Or let others talk them into.
But not all "next year..." s are because of failures, sometimes they are because a "hey, I can do this, I might even get away with doing more" sweeps over you, while attempting to stay honest and humble.

North Garden sweet peas. Taken Tuesday of Extreme Heat Week

The pictures of Stephanie and the boys were taken at the height of our heat wave. It had been building for quite sometime and then peaked mid-week last week. Well this is also a picture taken last week. My sweet peas appreciated the knock down blast and the "now stay off" spritz of Neem oil and Epsom salts I gave the aphids a while back and now they are continuing to bloom with the promise of going all the way into fall.

In my two gallon sprayer I put in a splash of hippy dish soap, two and a half-ish tablespoons of Neem oil and a couple of tsp. of Epsom salts. I had blasted the the aphids hard with this (turn the tip of your sprayer to stream like your kitchen spray bottle in a water fight) and then went back over the whole plant with a lovely stay-on-the-leaves-you-great-little-solution misting spritz.

Princess Elizabeth Sweet Pea perfuming the North Garden

I only did this because the sweet peas were heading south (no offense you southerners) before they really wanted to. And it was all the aphids' fault. My brugs may be holey and not blooming but the not blooming thing is from them not getting sun early enough in the year and not being fed steak and eggs for breakfast, two double deluxe cheese burgers and fries for lunch and a baron of beef for dinner every day.

And the holey thing isn't all that crucial. I'm not raising them for exhibition. So I would rather let the leaf hoppers think that they are safe and hopefully the lady bugs and lace wings will come in, knock their pompous rears off their bikes, and arrest the lot of them, while leaving a few to snack on later.

I do give them a spritz of Epsom salts. It helps their cell walls and bad bugs don't like crisp vegetation. Another reason to suspect them as evil greasers. Remember the bad guy in Ever After (1998)? The guy who hauled off Danielle (Drew Barrymore), when Baroness Rodmilla de Ghent (Anjelica Huston) couldn't pay her bills anymore?

Pierre le Pieu?
Yeah that guy. He is who I think of when I think of nasty plant chomping bugs. Or slugs. Or...

Last Friday's harvest from the North Garden
So the sweet peas keep a coming and I am reminded that even in a summer like this one (slightly unusual for us, doncha think) they are not all that hard to keep blooming. They are one of my favorite flowers and I was glad to hear that a fellow at the flower market in Portland told my sister (a non-professional wedding flower doer) that more brides should carry sweet peas. I could not agree with him more.
So my flower garden will always have sweet peas just in case there is a lovely bride who may need the perfect bouquet and not have the bucks to hire a zillion dollar florist. One of my secret dreams (that really isn't a secret) is to have Vicktory Farm and Gardens be used as a wedding place by people who understand what a wedding is. One of the other not-so-secret dreams is to own a tavern with a farm near by.
Back to the sweet peas, I have always attempted to grow them but often succumb to some foil or another. Usually it is defeatism at the hands of moles, yeah I know they are suppose to be omnivorous but funny how I lose my just planted pea seeds to fresh mole tunnels.
If they, moles, aren't eating the seeds and it is really herbevorous voles coming down the mole tunnels then all I've got to say is Grahame missed by not having a vole in his story and Lobel should have done Mole and Vole instead of Frog and Toad, 'cause my two fellas must be a knock out communicaten' team!


Did you see what Janie saw in the harvest shot?
Speaking of moles?
I'm beginning to think that Dirt now has pet moles or has formed a coalition with the enemy. I never see them in the lawn anymore. Only in my gardens. And I really have a hard time with the Ratters going after them in my gardens. They may go after them on the edge or in the lawn, I don't mind, but the Ratters are about as mindful of my plants as Dirt is. And trust me, that ain't much!
" You know, you could have called on me. I've gotten them before you know. You didn't need to waste your time setting this trap. I could have gotten it and shook the living daylights outta it!"
I think Dirt is sending them to my gardens so that I will let him keep his lawn and desist in edging farther and farther into his domain. Mmmm.
Well Dirt, you are stuck with me, my fat... and my flowers. Your mole coalition will not deter me. I heard you say that you like my flowers, yes, I had to eaves drop to hear the compliment, but it was there all the same. I know how you really feel. Not unlike sleeping under flowery, billowy white sheets and comforters, you like what I bring to the party.

"I think I will sink into depression"

I waited too long to harvest my garlic, (some of it is in the basket here), we got over thirty pounds but only one batch of softnecks were worth braiding, the others went into net sleeves like the hard necks.
Thirty pounds outta get Dirt at least to Christmas before I have to buy it from Cash n' Carry in large food service sized boxes. In the middle of winter there is a certain constant odor in my bedroom. (He smells like a hippy-girl-massage-therapist, minus the patuouli oil of course.) I'm glad I don't have an over zealous fear of burning a candle while I sleep. The off beat snoring is hard enough to sleep by, then you add nut job radio playing all night long and the smell of garlic drenched pores and I am driven to the couch, which really only last about a half-hour or so before I realize I can't sleep there either.
I am not married to my best friend. I like my best friends, every single one of them. But I would not take all that from them, trust me.

Unmarked Lily in the Lawn Border Garden

And no best friend of mine would be able to step on my twenty blossom Casa Blanca lily as it begins to emerge from its winter slumber and live to tell about it let alone continue to be my "best" friend. Dirt and I friendly and pals, no doubt. But best friends don't marry, men and women marry, and the bond is far far beyond that of best friendness.
If my best friend and I "break up" I am free to have another, quite frankly in my world I have scads of "best" friends, I am not monobestfriendous. But I do not have such a loose connection to my spouse. We are now one. We were the moment, the very split second we said, "I do." Neither one of us can sever that bond, no court of law can, no amount of miles can. It was a done deal twenty-eight years and ten months ago.
Saved and replanted "Easter Lilies"
It doesn't matter what he sounds like or smells like; it matters little what he says or doesn't say; it doesn't matter if he has grown too much in a direction I chose not to or too little in an area I did; it doesn't matter if he changed and is no longer the man I married; it doesn't matter if he still is the man I married and not the man I thought he would become; it doesn't matter if he makes a hundred little mistakes or one giant one that even the Pope might say was too much; it doesn't even matter if he made forty-sixty zillion kabillion of those giant mistakes.
We are one.
We will always be one. Until one of us departs and goes to heaven. And then when we are both there we won't care that the other is there because all we will "care" for is the face to face presence of Christ our Lord.
Oh wait, this post is about the heat wave and gardening.

Jackie O's Lipstick Abutilon

Container planting takes lots o' water. And when something takes lots o' water it takes lots o' feeding. Fortunately not everything in containers at Vicktory Farm and Gardens is a out of control thirsty hunger tyrant like the brugs. Jackie is very pleasant and very thankful for her daily portion of water and weekly feeding.

Petunias in flower pockets growing slowly for the end of September at the fair.

This flower pouch thing though, I'm not so stinking sure about. The verdict is out on this one for now. Jackie gets to stick around 'cause she is easy going, King Brug and his buddies are still on because they are eventually handsome and exotic. But these flower pouch things are a lot of nusince. I will do them again next year with some modifications in water and fert. delivery but if they are not performing better, read that, easier, then replaced they will be!

What is this?

I really enjoy participating in Fishing_Guy's weekly "What's It?" game. Well, that is when I remember to get over there pronto on Tuesday's. And while I am no master at macro lens (my camera matches my ability - limited and small) I thought I could toss this one out there and perhaps stump a few of you.
Hints? Come on, do you really need one Dear Reader? Okay after that rambling yappy post I suppose you are a little tired.
Remember this was taken durring the hottest days we have seen in the PNW in a lifetime (Jim Foremanesque hyperbole there). My dad loved watching Marcus Welby M.D. and he, Dr. Welby, was always seen eating a type of this at the end of each show. And now with all those hints and the full picture I really must insist that you hit it square on the nose, flavor and all.
Dear Reader, I pray that you can unmistakeably see the working of God, His mercy, His grace and His miracles in your life and through your life this week. I have seen great things these last few days. I've become free-er in Him every moment. And more a bonded servant to Him each second of my journey on the race. I feel I can race no faster than I am right now. Yet I feel I can not not race faster than I am at this moment. My joy could not be greater than it is today. Until I tell you tomorrow.


ethel said...

i like how you say, "oh yeah, this was about the heat wave and gardening..." i love your pictures. i admit i didn't read the whole post..i'll be back...gotta take the kids swimming ya know...take care!! love your idea of marriage..i quite agree, my friend.

Empress Bee (of the High Sea) said...

well i did read the whole post and the flowers are lovely. i think the unknown thingy is bleu cheese!

smiles, bee

Sparky ♥ ∞ said...

The pic's are great and thanks for explaining what a "brug" is! Your farm sure is purdy. [lol]

KathyB. said...

I read the whole post AND the comments. You play the "ketchup" game well, and all in one post!

I like the explanation of "best friends" and spouse. And yes, you're right. I also like the term " monobestfriendess", I am not that either, though I have a few friends I consider "best friends" and you're one....of my best friends. I like that way of explaining we can have a few or many of those, but only one spouse.

And those @#$%^&*+#$%@?@< MOLES!!!! You should see our place, just watch your step or you'll be in a hole along with them.

KathyB. said...

p.s. Don't get me started on Facebook. I have been on it for awhile and if I say what I think about it I might lose some friends and family, or at least make them mad. I am not getting off it anytime soon,I can actually see some benefits , but boy oh even a fraction of the junk on it worth the time it takes to type it in? And BTW, just which Disney princess are you?

Susie said...

I like your pics of your harvest from the garden and those petunias in a bag. Very cute Lanny!

Eggs In My Pocket / Yesteryear Embroideries said...

Well, I just grabbed me a cup of coffee and sat back and enjoyed reading your Whole post! LOL. Loved all of the pictures and your going back and forth on the subject of your post. On awards and tags, I agree. It's sweet someone wants to offer an award, however, I don't have a lot of time to even post on my blog as much. And my blog is just something to express a side of me and the things I do. I am not into facebook or twittering, but it's wonderful that all of these things are out there for everyone's different needs. So many ways to connect to people. All in all, I enjoyed such a wonderful read! blessings,Kathleen

Daisy said...

Lanny, this post was stuffed full to overflowing and running over the top! HA HA! I read it all and enjoyed it. Nobody likes banana flavored otter pops at our house either. I love the sweet peas--beautiful, beautiful flowers! I'm going to guess the "what is it" is grape flavored cookie dough? HA HA HA! Somehow, I don't think I have it right though. Enjoy your weekend, my dear. :)

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Lanny: It is so much harder being on the other side of the question. I going to say it is a dough for blueberry cookies. It is the best I can do.

The plant you show was what I called Datura.

AnnePants said...

How about mashed potatoes

Tipper said...

Enjoyed the post. Have no clue what the thing is-but I'm curious.

LindaSueBuhl said...

Ramblin' Rose - interesting post dear Lanny. Glad to know what the brugs are and see your beautiful sweet peas - also one of my favorites but purt near impossible to grow in my spot of the world. Bestfriendness - I am not good at that - I love being a friend but evidently never got the lessons on choosing wisely. Love the ratters - but then I say that all the time. Your gardening skills are so far beyond mine - all I can do is admire from afar! Don't know what the blob thing is - I was going to guess it was bits of soap all combined to make a new usable size soap.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Now, now. You will care that the other is there, and we will all be together in his Presence, and seeing his Face.

I'll bet Dirt is not a person of so many words as you. A man of few words, but good ones at that, I imagine.

Pretty pics. Sweet peas and all. Michigan has been as cool this summer as you're state has been hot. An unusual summer indeed.

Flower said...

The Sweet Peas caught pretty! I plant for the "just incase there's a wedding" reason, too!! Facebook, yes, but with reserve!! It's about the time and there isn't enough!!

Far Side of Fifty said...

Hi Lanny, I am behind on my reading and catching up! Love the Brugs..start them earlier..and those planting bags..we used to put them in five gallon buckets to water them..they really need to soak.. a pain in the you know what. Your Sweet Peas are beautiful, I could almost smell them.
I have no idea what your bluish doughy looking thing is:)

Far Side of Fifty said...

Hi Lanny, I am behind on my reading and catching up! Love the Brugs..start them earlier..and those planting bags..we used to put them in five gallon buckets to water them..they really need to soak.. a pain in the you know what. Your Sweet Peas are beautiful, I could almost smell them.
I have no idea what your bluish doughy looking thing is:)