Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


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WOOHOO! And, Aaaaack!

Can you believe it’s September already? WOOHOO! I love autumn. (Come on and get here!)

I feel as if I’ve been kinda MIA for the last week or two. Sorry about that, but I’ve been busy lately.

I had a tooth go bad (infected, you know?) so the dentist started a root canal. (You know it’s hurting me when I can’t wait to get into the office and get a giant needle shoved in my jaw. I’m denta-phobic!) The next day, I was sick all day.

I don’t know why. Maybe it was a coincidence and maybe it was the infection. Who knows? (I’m sure someone does, but I’d rather just ignore it.)

Dental Dude put me on antibiotics (he’s a great guy) and that caused Other Problems. (If you don’t know what kind of problems antibiotics can cause, look it up. It’s gross enough to live through without talking about it.)

There’s another story about the visit. I’ll try to remember to tell it later. Tomorrow maybe?

Next I was hit by a UTI. (You can look that one up, too.) For some reason, doctors don’t like to take my word for it when I tell them I have an infection, so I had to go in for a visit. 😦 But I don’t really mind. I have a great doc.

So my funny doctor (not my dentist) changed my antibiotics to something that’ll work on both problems and we both crossed our fingers that I WOULDN’T have more of that same Other Problem again.

Yep, another story about that visit, too. DAT, maybe?

Sigh.

When I ate my breakfast cereal one morning, I heard a snap and oops! Root Canaled tooth cracked. Luckily, Omega had a dentist appointment she let me use that afternoon. Sisters are great, aren’t they?

I tried to get Dental Dude to glue the tooth back together, but he said he couldn’t. (I even offered to loan him some fingernail glue. No go.)

My dad had his hip replaced on Tuesday. Naturally, I wanted to be there when before surgery started, but the surgeon got around earlier than I did and I didn’t make it in time. Almost all of his kiddos were there when he came out.

He did great! Something about the procedure has changed in the last four years since I had mine replaced, and he didn’t get the morphine pump like I had. (Interesting experience if you enjoy riding the Tilt-a-Whirl when you were young.)

But when it was time for him to get up and stand on that new hipper, his BP took a nose dive.

I spent one night with him at the hospital. (We like to have somebody there all the time. Anyone else like that?) Not a lot of rest, but we had a great time together.

It took a couple of days for him to get over having low BP, but he’s home now and happy as a lark.

I figure he’ll be back at work in a week or so if not before.

He didn’t make it to church Sunday, although I half expected him to be there. I really missed him, too.

As busy as I’ve been with everything, I didn’t get much else done. Not much writing. Or blogging. Or gardening. (Weeds be gone!)

Oh, and our gift for this beautiful long weekend? Our upstairs air conditioner died a sad death, so we’re living downstairs.

Yet another story for even another time. 🙂

What’s going on with you?

 

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Cockle Shells, Silver Bells, and Pretty Maids . . .

I’m not Mary, I’m rarely contrary, but I’ve got a garden this year. Of sorts. (LOL) I’m fresh out of shells, bells and maids. 😦

Strawberry Pot

Strawberry Pot

Years ago when G-Man and I were first married we planted a HUGE garden. (And I had a beautiful, blistering sunburn for my first anniversary. Oh, the memories. 🙂  )

This grew out of the strawberry pot and into the bricks.

This grew out of the strawberry pot and into the bricks.

We raised green beans, beets, tomatoes, onions, peppers, okra. And squash. Six hundred tons of squash. I fixed it every way possible, then we started freezing it.

Sweet potato vine, Vincas, Pintas and Angels' Wings. (Sometimes I make up my own names.)

Sweet potato vine, Vincas, Pintas and Angels’ Wings. (Sometimes I make up my own names.)

In case you didn’t know, if you have a yard in Okieland, you have to have a garden. (I think it’s a law.)

Big pots take a lot of soil!

Big pots take a lot of soil!

I’ve learned a thing or two in the years since that first garden. Now remember, most people know more about gardening than I do. 🙂 But I’m sharing what I know.

Here’s what I’ve picked up on.

  • Life began in a garden. (Called Eden.)
  • Plant flowers. Lots of them. And a few veggies.
  • Only plant three squash or zucchini plants for each family of 357.
  • Don’t plant okra. (It gives you stickers.)
  • Don’t plant watermelon or cantaloupe unless you have plenty of room. (160 acres or so.)
We bought new pots last summer. Now they match!!

We bought new pots last summer. Now they match!!

  • Water, water, water. And then water some more.
  • Stay ahead of the weeds or they’ll eat everything you grow. (Or hide it, which amounts to the same thing.)
  • Lock your car during squash season. Just sayin’.

empty potMore! Dirt! Please!!!

If you look in the background of the above pic, you can see the pots that used to be on my deck. They have herbs in them and I love my herbs, so I moved them to the pond area. Now if I only had a pond.

I have a thing for watering cans.

I have a thing for watering cans.

So here it is, nearly the middle of June, and I’m just getting my pots planted. But they’re pretty, aren’t they? I have a few more plans, and I’ll let you in on them if I can get them done. And find enough soil.

Hope I don't murder them.

Hope I don’t murder them.


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Spring Thing

Wow. Is the weather weird this spring or what? Here in Okieland, it’s been c-o-l-d! Wear-a-jacket cold. You know?

And usually by this time, it’s warm. Not this year. 😦

But yesterday was gorgeous.

I’ve had a chance to clean out the gardens, but that’s all. Mostly. IMG_3801 Usually, by this time of year I’ve had a chance to go to the garden center and make my deck look like this. Not this year, though.

Too much cold weather, rain and lazy daisy. (If my name was daisy.)

And last year I shared this with you.

bunny-glovesLooks sweet, doesn’t he? I told you his tale here.

He was a wolf in bunny’s clothing. After I rescued him, he came back and ate my plants. Not. Nice.

IMG_3879And last year I shared some wild flowers with you.

IMG_3871This year, there haven’t been as many. It’s either too cold for them to grow or too wet for me to get out and find them. I’m not too sure which. 😉

IMG_3851I did see a handful of these in a ditch yesterday on the way home from work. (I think they’re Indian Paintbrush, but I can’t promise.)

IMG_3809

My hydrangea aren’t blooming yet, but at least they have leaves.

redbud-and-Gary-glee

This if from last March, the day of Baby Boy’s wedding. That’s G-Man in the background. Hard to believe the redbud was blooming in March, isn’t it? They’re just now in full glory this year. (Right, no current pictures. Just this repic.)

instead-of-a-candle

Just for fun, I wanted to share again the Unity Candle that Baby Boy and DIL#3 didn’t have in their wedding. Instead, they planted this Japanese Maple together.

Is that cool or what?

So, that’s spring so far–not much. I’m just hoping we don’t go straight to full-blown 100°+ weather.

I’m kinda busy the next couple of weekends (one’s a shower for a niece. Grins!) so I don’t see much gardening happening. Oh, well. :} There’s always June. Right?

So . . . how’s your garden this year? In the ground? Tomatoes towering? Beans blooming?  Squash squishing?

Gonna share?


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Magic is Back

I get so excited when springtime happens. It’s almost magical when the new leaves bud out and the early flowers bloom . . . even though I’m the one who planted most of what’s budding and blooming, and shouldn’t be surprised by what’s happening at all.

You know?

So it’s that time again.

Sweet lilac is blooming, so is jasmine and a couple of ground covers. But the one that smacks me in the face each year, knocks me right off my pins with its beauty is the peony.

1-1-peony

 Can it get any prettier than that?

Well, that depends on what you like best. I’ll show you what I mean.

See? It’s really hard to choose what you like best . . . unless you have a bias to start with.

Anyway, look quick. ‘Cause they’ll be gone soon.


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It’s In The Air!

Can you feel it? It’s in the air! It’s EVERYWHERE!!! (Or it will be.)

LOOK AT THIS!

Friday, March 15, 2013, in C-Town, Oklahoma

  • Lo: 46° F
  • Hi: 83° F

Almost a record high! Woohoo!

As you know, I’m a fair-weather gardener. I like the temperature to be not too hot and not too cold when I’m out in the world of dirt and blooms. (And sticks and dead things.) I’m thinking today is The Day to get out and get my hands dirty!

spring-columbines

Don’t you love flowers and gardens and things that make our lives more beautiful? (These are Columbine.) Don’t you hate weeds and grass and everything that grows where it’s not supposed to?

blue flowers_edited-1I’m getting excited. Do I work in the garden or head for the poor, neglected, abused pond?

white-flowers

I bought new pots last summer so at least some of my deck containers will match this year. And they aren’t plastic!

wild-blue-flowersAnd the new containers are blue!

pentas and blue flowers

I like blue. (Could you tell?)

eureka!-flowers!!!So . . . I think I might play hooky from work this afternoon and see how warm it really does get. (And how dirty I can get.)

How about you?


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Small World Chickens Vs. The Coyotes

Chickens

The Spess Gang and most of my Small Town World is in mourning this week.

Remember when I told you about Dad’s chickens? He loves those babies! He’s had a ton of fun, raising them and figuring out the best way to keep them.

He shared a ton of eggs. He shared with his kids (yay!) his employees and friends.

shell-tiny And we all adored him for it.

At first, the eggs were itty-bitty, but they got bigger. Much bigger.

shell-dozen

Dad and his wife discovered if the chickens got to range a little in their yard, they’d eat some green growing things and make the eggs even better and more nutritious.

So the other morning he turned his hens out to forage–all twenty-nine of them–and went inside to eat breakfast and get ready for work. A while later, he went out to put them back inside as he left for work when he saw something that didn’t belong.

A four legged critter with a furry tail. Coyote! She had chicken dinner for breakfast.

😦

When he got to the scene, he found one dead hen, a pile of feathers and 12 hens sitting in the trees and other hard to reach places. Since one scrawny coyote probably couldn’t eat that many chickens, Dad figures there was a whole gang of them. (I’ve been told coyotes run in packs, not gangs, but I think street terminology fits here.)

One hen did limp home the next day, but that’s it. Only thirteen hens, and somewhere, not far away, a pack/gang/gaggle of really fat coyotes.

shell-2 We’re hoping to relocate a few wild dogs.


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Yard Shoot

While we were in Arkansas last weekend, I took a lot of pretty-leaves-from-a-distance pictures. I never thought about what closeups would look like. Then I read a blog where a woman said taking random closeup shots of fall leaves was good for her soul.

I loved her pictures and wanted to try it. Our leaves aren’t that gorgeous this year. And I don’t have a ton of time for going out to find them.

When I came home yesterday, I decided to try it anyway, and stay in my own backyard. I kind of like the results.

See what you think.

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I also took pictures of my one remaining tomato plant.

I had two plants here, back in the spring. After they’d grown a while, they looked like this–

Then one of the plants ate the other one, and now he looks like this.

I keep my fingers crossed that he won’t eat Molly when she’s out playing in the yard. So much plant, so little fruit. 🙂