Archive for the ‘Garden’ Category

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City Conveniences

September 22, 2010

One of the really great things about living in The City is that you can get just about anything delivered.

Of course there are restaurants: pizza, Chinese, Thai, even four star haute cuisine. You can get your laundry and dry cleaning delivered. You can have a rental car delivered. And yesterday, for the princely sum of $31, I got the country delivered.

Yummmmm! Fresh, organic, local. I’ve got some serious cooking to do!

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Urban Legend: fish are calming

April 29, 2010

Whoever thought fish were supposed to be a calming influence clearly have not walked a mile in my shoes.

Last year I got The Child a beautiful betta fish – a blue one, of course, due to her obsession with the color blue. We named him Aqua (very original, I know, so kindly STFU). He started off to be a nice enough little chap. He’d follow you around the tank, seemingly in to “hanging out” and interacting.

Then we moved. And his food got lost in the shuffle.

Dreamboat (Scott, for those of you out of the loop) babysat him for a week or so and tried to give him the flake food he feeds his oscar. Aqua was not amused. He went on a hunger strike.

When we brought him to our house we picked up some betta food, thinking he’d go back to his happy, eating, interacting self. FAIL. He’d suck in a little nugget and immediately spit it out and look at me like I was the biggest jackass on the planet.

I don’t take kindly to being rebuffed by surly fish. It was expensive betta food and he damn well better learn to love it!

He finally relented, though I think his prolonged starvation has taken its toll. Either he’s developed a vision problem or he’s manipulating me. I have a strong suspicion it’s the latter. Now he hangs out in the upper corner of his tank (his “feed me” spot), and when I drop a little nugget in the water he does one of two frustrating things: he’ll flee as if I’m showering him with lighting bolts; or he hovers within millimeters of the floating tidbit until I wiggle it even closer to him with my finger – literally forcing me to spoon feed him. He may eat one or four nuggets before he decides, again, that it’s no longer food – it’s lightning bolts.

High maintenence little bastard.

When Dreamboat asked if he could put his koi in the fountain in our garden I thought that was a nifty idea! Koi! They are cool and all zen-ny just by virtue of their folkloric (is that a word?) reputation.

When he dumped them in the fountain I was excited as they were big and beautiful! There’s one gray and white one that reminds me of some prehistoric monster-skeleton-y thing; and two orange, black and white ones that are just plain pretty.

The process of capturing them from their large pond, spending a whole day in a bucket in the car, and getting unceremoniously dumped in to our admittedly scuzzy fountain was an understandably stressful day for them. I spent lots of time that day worrying that they were too stressed. Was the gray one listing to one side? Were the spotted ones even moving?? Already I was investing too much emotion in three fish, but being an animal lover I am terrified of anything dying on my watch.

Eventually they perked up and deemed sufficiently strong ( in my expert opinion) for me to quit worrying. (Except for worrying that one of the neighborhood raccoons would make sushi of them – but that’s nature so I can deal with it. Kind of.)

Excitedly I decided it was time to feed them. OMG have you seen big hotels with koi fish and how they practically leap out of the water to gobble up their vittles? These fish are flashy show-offs who dazzle you with their food-guzzling bravado! And now I was going to have that spectacular-ness in my own back yard! Perhaps I should sell tickets!!

Wrong.

Why? Because now these are “my” fish. And apparently my fish all have eating disorders. And my koi fish also are all Emo. Seeing them in our rather small fountain is like seeing Sasquatch. The three of them spend all their time hiding under the fountain because the world is clearly too sad for them to be in and my love is just not enough.

... because the other two little bastards are hiding

(No they are not yet raccoon sushi. When I turn on the water pump they are forced out of their mopey-hidey place and I can see that their sorry asses are still alive.)

So, in summary, fish are supposed to be all relaxing but my fish make me angry.

FML

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Welcome to the jungle*

March 20, 2009

* formerly known as our garden…

My poor garden is long-suffering.  It goes through periods of total neglect, being used as a paint/workshop, or is the victim of my less than expert attention.  Last week when attempting to dig up a science project I realized the dire situation that had bloomed back there.

Weeds!  Giant killer weeds!!  And they were taking no prisoners!  It’s shocking how they can grow on top of  brick!

There were at least a thousand chores I didn’t want to do so I decided to head outside and slay some weeds.  A little bit of effort yielded a BIG sense of accomplishment – and a big sense of dread at the enormity of the task at hand.

It ultimately took 3 hours to weed my tiny little garden – and I filled the curbside composting bin TWICE.  As you can see, there’s not actually a lot of dirt back there… it’s mostly brick.

Oh… and while I was pulling weeds like a mad woman, what was The Child doing?  Uh, she “helped”.  Who doesn’t need a gigantic hole in the garden?  I really can’t tell you just how helpful it is to hear “LOOK NOW!” with every shovelful extracted!  The annoyance pride shone across my face as I reminded myself that there were many other ways she could have “helped” that would have been far less helpful 😛

 So today – in honor of the first day of spring – we prettied up the clean, weed-free dirt with some actual pretty and EDIBLE things! 

Red-leaf and Meyers lettuce, two kinds of tomatoes (at least one is fog-tolerant – we’ve had them 3 other summers), sugar snap peas, and catnip for the Hairy Beast.  The tall, green-thumbed super salesman at Sloat Garden Center assured us that all of these things would survive the total lack of unclouded sun, cool weather and questionable soil that graces our neighborhood.  Riiiiiiight.  We’ll see about that.

We put some major COLOR!!! along the far wall to brighten up the view from the livingroom.  I’ll be happy if the Forsythia survives… because it’s so bright and grows quite large, and also because it’s my namesake 😛

 

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