Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Rhubarb and the chipmunk statue

Silly blogger will not let me edit photos that I posted from the app on the iPhone so bear with me. The service berries on our two trees are gradually ripening drawing the flock of cedar waxwings or waxbirds as my SIL calls them (not a fan of birds). We are still trying to sneak a good picture of them though they bolt at the sight of a camera. Above are our latest attempts though as I was uploading photos from the porch, 6 of them fed right in front of me. Roses are blooming now though I would never plant roses as they seem to be prone to all sorts of diseases I don't want to deal with. The lacy flower in the middle is a mystery. I posted it on Facebook and a fellow gardener said it was probably a Pasqueflower or pulsatilla. I looked this up and found it to be identical to the flower on the bottom which bloomed 6 weeks ago (around Easter: thus its name). So I have an answer to that old question but still don't know what the new flower is.(I had taken the photo to garden centers and they couldn't tell me. I also texted the photo to show to my other SIL but no answer there). It is a tundra flower keeping low to the ground with a Latin name meaning little frog. Also it's the state flower of South Dakota and very toxic. Native Americans found many uses for the toxin including using it to induce birth. So take that trivia fans. (I bore people with little facts such as which birds have no gall bladders...pigeons and doves)
Along with entertaining house guests, I have been planting things: rhubarb and various herbs. Rhubarb takes up lots of space, which now I have. I will have to wait a year to harvest it. Meanwhile, my sisters-in-law purchased a very tasty rhubarb-strawberry pie at the Farmer's Market for our family BBQ at Shanna's (strawberries and rhubarb are the only fruit available in Michigan right now).
On Sunday, we had a family brunch at our house. Fortunately, throughout my family's stay, we had perfect weather perfect for sitting outside even early in the morning. It was hot and humid the day we walked in the Arb to see the peonies and the mountain laurel but there was plenty of shade to hide in. Later that evening, a cold front came through as we were bar hopping in downtown Plymouth, a refreshing change. Julie was looking closely at my waterfall (I planted more flowers around it; need to buy water lilies still).
Um..do you have a chipmunk statue at the bottom of the pool?
It was upright with its arms extended. Its legs trapped under the pump; a sad sight though the adults were more upset than the kids. I am not a fan of rodents, particularly chipmunks no matter how cute they are as they are more plentiful and destructive than the lone squirrel but it was not a good way to die. Josh removed the body.
I love the long days now. I was out the door around 6 am Sunday for a long bike ride well before cars were on the road and my house guests got up. The air was refreshingly cool. During a run the day before after our trip to the Farmer's Market (very crowded on Saturdays but I couldn't persuade people to get up before 6:30), I came across a group of ladies with binoculars at the series of lakes on my longer runs watching egrets and baby swans. Birders. They gave me tips on the local birds.
Steve's brother and his wife left midday yesterday; his sister, the night before. Back to a relatively empty house and quiet. It was fun having a household of people (the kids visiting with their kids). I should have cooked more but was drawing a blank on what would appeal to the all the people so we brought in take out making me feel like a bad hostess. I can cook. I did make a few things. One late morning, my brother-in-law made the one dish he cooks: omelets. A big production with his wife chopping up all the ingredients and his sister making the bacon. This was pictured in yesterday's post.
We had a nice lunch in downtown Ann Arbor before the Arb walk and a nice lunch in Plymouth the day before. We went barhopping to different places in Plymouth picking up barfood along with too much alcohol though we had designated drivers. Shanna had us and her husband's family (lots of people) one of the afternoons. The rest of the time, we hung out here. It was fun. I especially enjoyed talks early in the morning outside while drinking coffee. Lots of photos taken. I tried not to be in them as looking at photos of myself these days leads to depression. I can't even get my hair to look good anymore and seem puffier than ever.
Back to training for my ride in a little bit more than a month. Only one house viewing in the past week. Meanwhile all the other houses are selling. We will have to lower the price in a week or so. Back today or tomorrow to do more lawn stuff.  I will be so glad when it sells.


Kat&Chris said...

Hi Sue!
That lacy flower looks like a Nigella to me. It is also called "love in a mist" - quite a name.

Sue in Italia/In the Land Of Cancer said...

thanks Kathy. I googled image search and although some nigella have more petals, I found some looking just like mine. It is in the same family (Latin word for frog as are buttercups) as the pulsilla.

Elephant's Child said...

Yup, it looks like a love in the mist to me too. Glad that someone else thought so.
Chipmunk statue? Sad. And bad.

Sue in Italia/In the Land Of Cancer said...

Never heard of them before EC but I seem to be learning every day.

Snowbrush said...

I don't know if I've ever seen a cedar waxwing, and I don't know my birds, but I did recognize that one.


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