Sunday, June 27, 2010

What a crazy week

Summer has finally arrived in Portland and I am very happy about that, but geez, it is nearly the end of June. I feel like we lost out on June this year. It is usually about the best month of the year, but not this year. The good news is that while it was raining and blowing and raining, and, did I mention that it rained?, well all that time things were growing and now the sun is out and it is gloriously warm and all is green and blooming.

This is the front garden and it is looking so beautiful. When we moved in here less than two years ago this area was lawn. Ray has worked so hard to get rid of most of the grass, plant all those gorgeous plants, get the pathways in and along the way deal with falling trees and branches. I put out my batik lanterns today and I finally got an iron bracket to hang Ray's gong/bell thing and he got it hung. It is hanging on the big Douglas fir at the end of the path. It is quite a wonderful thing. Several years ago when we were selling garden art at one of the garden shows near here Ray spotted these big bells, made from steel tanks that once held—??? I'm not sure. Oxygen? Anyway, they make a wonderful, deep "mmmmmmmunnnnnnggggg" sound when you swing the cord so the clapper hits inside. It is beautifully finished with a purply, coppery patina and the hanging metal sunburst.

I am hoping the coming week is less eventful than the past week. Last night was a full moon, but I don't think that explains last week. It included, on the minus side of the scale: a broken taillight on Ray's pickup, a trip to the emergency room when Ray got a piece of chicken stuck in his esophagus, Ray chasing and finally killing a mouse in Emily's kitchen, a car plowing through the outside wall of Sofia's daycare (don't worry, no one hurt), my first mosquito bite of the season which caused big time allergic reaction including red swollen leg and purple painful lump, burned hot dogs and a broken mug. On the plus side: visit from our niece and two kids, day at the Oregon Zoo with all the kids, Sofia's first dance class (OMG—so cute!), got my teeth cleaned and finished both my Banos quilt and my 12 x 12 quilt. So, nothing terrible, but just enough to keep us on our toes all week. Ray is fine and my leg is looking better every day. I bought a big bottle of insect repellent today. I'd like to lay in the shade with my book (The Girl Who Played with Fire), reeking of Deet and drinking iced tea this week. Probably won't happen, but I can dream.


  1. In North Carolina we are fighting mealy bugs (YUK) in the garden. Discovered that Dr. Bonner's peppermint soap works on them. Then my sister discovered that the mosquitoes leave her alone when she bathes in Dr. Bonner's. Just might be worth a try.

    I enjoy your blog and did so enjoy visiting Portland and Cannon Beach every summer from 1988-2002.

  2. You will love the book! I read the first one (got it from the library), couldn't wait to get the 2nd so bought the paperback, then couldn't wait for the 3rd and got the hardcover from Amazon! Happy reading & iced tea drinking...

  3. I'm two up on you with mosquito bites. Unfortunately, one is in the center of my right cheek - looks like I am growing a horn there. I suppose everyone just thinks it is a humongous zit - at my age!? All three came in Long Beach - where were the phoebes when I needed them? I'm not sure which I hate more - summer heat or summer mosquitoes. Bummer.

  4. I got bit by something at work last week and my arm was so swollen, red, and hot to the touch. What's with the mosquitos this year????

    We had an entire month of rain last June. This year we had heat and sun. Today, hard rain. And I can't find the umbrella.

  5. You've earned the right to loll and read, my dear. Give in to it!

  6. I read a newspaper article quite some time ago about someone who was collecting those tanks from Mt Everest. They did hold oxygen. Apparently, when they are empty, the climbers just leave them on the trail, because -- of course -- they can't manage any extra weight on such a demanding climb. I think he did some etching designs on the outside of his before turning them into bells. I love Ray's too! Your yard has so much style and character.