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"Life doesn't have to be perfect to be wonderful."
- Unknown

"That which does not kill you, makes you stronger."
- Handed down through the ages.

"Life's tough. It's even tougher when you're stupid."
- John Wayne

A Good Labor Day

I had a good day yesterday - a profitable one.

I got the geraniums all dead-headed on the big deck, scrubbed the tabletop out there, and swept the whole thing (lots of downed, sticky pine cones).  I need a pretty centerpiece for that table - one that can take all kinds of weather and is heavy enough to not blow off.  Suggestions?  The potted pansies that I bought at the beginning of the summer haven't done well out there.  I thought they wanted full sun, but apparently not.  The leaves are very washed-out and unhappy and the blooming is minimal.  They'll come inside soon, and I'll see if I can keep them happy over the winter.

 Mixing outside work with office work from home, I also got all the remaining (8 of 10) Riverbank Grapes planted.  I know, I know, all that is supposed to happen at the BEGINNING of summer - not the end - but c'est la vie.  I also scoped out the places I want to plant the 10 Mountain Ash - one of which was just southwest off the pub (garage upstairs) deck.  Planning ahead, I wanted to have a good station from which to photograph Waxwings eating up the berries.  Hit NOTHING but rock, though, and eventually realized that the area I was trying to dig was built up and made up of nothing but huge retaining-wall boulders with only a couple inches of sandy soil on top.  I ain't gonna be able to dig THOSE rocks out!

I thought this was hilarious:  this mouse was stretched out flat in front of the garage . . . deader than a doornail!  Now that's not how we normally see dead mice, is it??? 
There were still a couple of skeeters trying to get me during the tree planting, but I prevailed with no headnet nor bug dope AND, get this, I had to wear a SWEATER outside while I worked yesterday!  Cah-RAZY wonderful!  I think I may actually take the canopy off the bed . . . although, so I don't jinx things, I may just wait until after the first hard frost.  ;)

Weed / shrub / plant ID, please!  When this first started coming up, it looked like some sort of wild rhubarb:  large leaves & stalk-like stems.  It was unusual, though, so I mowed around and left it to grow.  Maisy's here for size comparison:  it's pretty big!

The flowers look like thistles but aren't sharp.  They are "sticky", though (more in the shape of each individual spine to catch insects than anything), and I've seen grasshoppers get caught on them.

After blooming, the flowers dry up but keep the same shape.  Just brown in the centers now instead of purply-pink.  So, anyone have any ideas?!

During my office work-from-home, I got 3 projects finished and sent off to the newspaper and printer, respectively.  That felt good!

In the evening, I made two loaves of round Irish Soda Bread with sultanas.  Turned out a little heavier and less scone-like than I would have preferred.  Wonder if that's because I used bread flour instead of all-purpose?  Either way, it's yummy (and surprisingly stick-to-your-ribs).

After dinner, I called an old, dear, hilarious girlfriend who's experiencing some health problems.  Had a terrific, long talk.  Suddenly, those colored ribbons that reflect support for different diseases mean everything to me.  Grrrr.

Then, I finished up some photographic note card assembly while listening to my most current audio book, Nevada Barr's '13 1/2'.  Closed up downstairs and crocheted in the library while watching some old episodes on DVD of 'The Lucy Show' and 'The Loretta Young Show' until my eyes were crossing.  And . . . went to bed!

I hope I can have as productive a day today!


  1. Looks like Burdock, CM. Those of us with sheep do NOT like burdock. Those burrs are horrid. You were very productive, Miss CM. Isn't it nice to wear a sweater again? I am looking forward to that lovely fall period. I sure hope we have one this year.

  2. I was thinking burdock too and they will multiply like dandelions so watch out next year. Am so jealous you are getting to wear a sweater. Still hot and humid here. TS Lee kept our cold front from arriving so will have to wait a little longer on sweater weather.

  3. I was going to say cockleburrs....yes, that is a burdock of sorts. They are nasty. I have seen them over at Joel Lewis'...I suppose it comes in the hay. Casey used to get into them in SD pheasant hunting. Being long haired, they stuck to him and made him really sick if he tried to bite them off of himself. Foxy Lady

  4. Thanks, everyone! Since this morning and reading your comments, I have cut all the blooms/flowers/seed pods off, and they are in the burn barrel! I looked online, and burdock is beneficial for oodles of things, so I think I'll keep a little around . . . but I don't want it to "multiply like dandelions" with those burrs!!!

  5. I think a huge mosquito scared the poor mouse to death and he dropped in his tracks It is exactly what I'm gonna do today.I do not know how 1 family can have so many problems [ mostly medical]now my daughter is on her way over to go to the E.R. on doctors orders I just hope its nothing serious and after that I pray its not something where I have to watch babies for a week,I seriously will keel over

  6. false alarm--good,I hope it stays false but really I am soooo glad there is not much the matter,thanks for listening to this crazy woman ranting

  7. plant is burdock. It is a biennual plant . The first year it will just be huge leaves, the second year it comes back grows the stock and seeds. If you do not get it under control now it will be everywhere. Spray the lower plants with 2-4d so they do not seed next year. Once they seed you will have hundreds.


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