Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Scavenging the August Doldrums

Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability. 
Sam Keen

Here's how uneventful it has been this August. I got nothing to say other than it's still hot and I'm still sweating.

I've had my head buried in books. This month I've laughed my way through Europe with Bill Bryson reading Neither Here Nor There. Had a most interesting discussion with my book club regarding The Submission. Lived in NYC and the Dominican Republic with the wonderful Oscar Wao, and relished the short stories of Edith Pearlman in Honeydew.

I'm currently in Beirut with An Unnecessary Woman.

As for my television watching, Deadliest Catch has concluded their season. Jeopardy is on hiatus. American football has yet to begin (and the Green Bay Packers have lost Jordy Nelson. Sigh.) My next up Netflix disc will begin the third season of The Newsroom and I've received a recommendation for Death in Paradise, a British venture filmed in Guadeloupe that I can stream.

I'm clinging to my hammock, the AC, and the end of summer as long as I can for once Labor Day passes I must resurface and join the world.  Maybe.

This litany of my August actions has thrilled you beyond measure, I'm sure.

Forthwith is my August Scavenger Hunt brought to you by the lovely Greenthumb. Go visit her in Australia at her blog Made with Love


The August List

Walk
Horizontal
Square
Diversity
Rough
Bow
Joy
Forgotten
Crowd
Colourless
Friendly
Whatever I Want



Walk
Guess who I saw on my walk today?

Horizontal
Okay, our fence is still horizontal to the ground. It just has a challenging path.

Square
Nothing like a good old game of Scrabble.

Diversity
You got your purple flowers, your variety of green water plants and your pond scum. Diversity.

Rough
Yup, might be a little rough falling into that.

Bow
I think this magnolia blossom would make a lovely bow.

Joy
End of day and a reprieve from the heat. Time to jump in the lake and float in the moonlight.

Forgotten
Oops...
...forgotten in the fridge.

Crowd
Blues on the Green. Used to be a small affair in Austin, Texas. Few hundred people. This night? Over 30,000.

Colorless
Once upon a time, I would have considered this a colorless photo. But as I gaze at it now, the white, silver, black and varied shades of brown -- colors I used to not consider colors -- are most beautiful.

So, okay  how about this for colorless.

I'm certain some do-gooder French Impressionist or a large-hatted Dutch Master could find color in this. Not me. Although...

Friendly
My duck friend giving me a kiss.

Whatever I Want
Please, Julie? I promise I won't come back for an hour if you give me just a tad more catfood. See, I'm just very gently resting my beak on your leg.

And that is as creative as this August Scavenger can muster. Hope you are all doing well. What have you been reading and watching this summer?


Friday, July 31, 2015

Scavenging in July

The weather is holding at 100 degrees. Hiding in the cool of the house and no better time than now to post my July scavenging.  The month started out with a bang with the Fourth of July festivities. Has pretty much petered out now. Long, hot days of summer. Gotta love 'em.

As always, visit Made with Love if you'd like to join the Scavenger Hunt.


The Difficult July List

D is for...
Wide
Edge
Cylindrical
Feelings
Mysterious
Weed
Joke
Pile
Speed
Night
Whatever You Want


D is for Devotion
These two will declare their devotion next year. Yup, another wedding for us. We are most happy.
Wide
A wide shot of Lake Travis in Central Texas. This baby is now 83% full as opposed to 37% at the beginning of May. Life is returning to the Highland Lakes.
 Edge
A couple of months ago, the edge of Lake Buchannan was way out at the end of the dam on the right. This reservoir is creeping up also. Now at 71% capacity as opposed to 37%.
Cylindrical
Morning Glories on my pink flamingo whirly-bird
Feelings
Bunco Bitches, less a couple of them. Suppose after 25 years I have some feelings for them. Just a few.
Mysterious
Mysterious indeed.
When did these babies grow up? The one on the left has been hanging with us since he was four years old. Babies. Yesterday.
Weed
How does my garden grow...
Joke
If this had been hanging in that bathroom my boys used all those years, it would not have been a joke -- except for the ladies part. Funny to see while waiting for the john in a bar though.
Pile
Summer Produce. Got your rhubarb pie, your cherries, peaches, corn, cucumbers, eggplant, heirloom tomatoes, jalapenos, green peppers, and  assorted junk on the counter.
Speed
Not quite fast enough with that badminton racket.
Night
The Blue Moon
Whatever I Want
Taking a little liberty here. Fourth of July week was very fun with youngest son who lives in NYC home for a week. Lots of dear friends and family around our tables. Have added just a few extra pics. Okay, more than a few. My blog.














I'll tell you what. These photo posts kill me. Takes me much longer to figure it all out and arrange than it ever did to write an essay. Might have to rethink this monthly Scavenger Hunt. Fun when its done though. Sort of like taking nothing and making something, anyway you want.

How often does one get to do that?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

It's Hot in Texas

What dreadful hot weather we have! It keeps me in a continual state of inelegance. 
Jane Austen
 

One might seriously define me as inelegant at the moment. As well as covered in sweat. I've returned from a walk and watered what remains of my garden. I say "remains" as the heat has hit. After a cold and dreay March, beautiful April, wet/dangerous floody May and a not-so-bad June, it is now hotter than hell in Texas. 

I'm too sweaty to get in the shower. I will sweat in there and sweat when I get out so I figured while I await my body temp to come down, I'd write a blog post. Seems to happen about this time every year. I have nothing better to write about than heat and dying plants. Perhaps I need a new summer gig.

In past years I've discussed the demise of my tomato plants. The ones that never really did anything anyway. 

This year offers no exception to the others. I thought my luck might change -- a little compost and more water. An early start. But the May rains brought all kinds of creatures that love to feast on tomato leaves and blossoms. My plants have limped along, but as you can see, my black thumb in the tomato department still earns a blue ribbon.

Aren't they beautiful? Too bad there isn't an award for the weeds growing at the bottom.

While I waited to cool off, I decided to take photos of what was still blooming in my yard before it all looks like my tomatoes.

Found one of these.

A lone geranium.

Pentas are hanging in there, but the zinneas are losing steam.

Five oranges-to-be on my tree

Turk's Cap should survive

This cactus is about to bloom. Right now that bud looks like... well, nevermind what it looks like.

It will look like this when it blooms.

I thank you for enduring this de-sweating time with me. I'm headed to the shower and then back to my Summer Reading List.  Too hot for the hammock. I'm cranking up the AC.

(Note about the Summer Reading List. I'm nine books into it. Highly recommend Euphoria by Lily King and Honeydew by Edith Pearlman. Currently laughing and enjoying The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz.)

 

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Soap Box Derby


It may be that all games are silly. But then, so are humans.  
Robert Lynd

What to do on a rainy Saturday. My husband and I have grown accustomed to this not being a problem as it hasn't rained in Central Texas in the past few years. This year the skies have produced much moisture and prompted a necessary change in our mindsets.

With the ground sodden, the lake filled with debris, and more rain to come, we decided to take in a movie. The last time my husband and I went to a movie together? Three years ago?

Movie time was a couple hours off so we stopped in our little Hill Country town to see what was happening with all the tents lined up on Main Street. Sometimes there are craft fairs or a wine festival, but what we found proved much more exciting.

A Soap Box Derby. An adult Soap Box Derby.

I recall reading stories when I was in elementary school about boys entering soap box derbies. No where I lived had them, so for me, it was just fiction. To come across my first one at age 58 proved most enlightening.

The Course - up the ramp, down the ramp, three blocks to the finish.

With the start of the race rain-delayed for another hour, we walked along the street to view the competition.







We marveled at some of the artwork on the street

"Let me share the wisdom of an adult soap box derby."

and  found ourselves at an outdoor restaurant. Marble Falls, being close to Austin, offered an excellent musician to keep us entertained while we sipped a margarita and awaited the starting gun.


Race time arrived. We found a good spot for our viewing pleasure.


This being Texas and all, we had to bow our heads and pray for the safety of the racers and the grace of the rain. Then we sang the National Anthem
And then...


...you truly must blow this up, turn up the sound, and watch this all the way to the end.

How fun was that?

Of course we needed another margarita.


In between races, we had a few side events. What would a derby be without fancy hats and a hat competition?




Won by that little lady in the yellow. 

And then, there are always a few crazies running around.

This being Texas and all.

We never made it to the movies. Americana. Gotta love it.
What's going on in your town?


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