Sunday, September 28, 2008

Stressing and Partying

We celebrated the last three family birthdays for the month of September Saturday night. Every weekend for the last two months we have been combining parties! There are eleven birthdays in August and September, which represents about 80 percent of my immediate family! (I'm not one of them.) Having a cake won't do; we have parties ! This time I was chosen to make make a German Chocolate cake and vanilla cupcakes. We went out to eat and all had a great time! We celebrate ALL holidays with lots of food and plenty deserts. Maybe this is why I always have to think about going on a diet!

Things are moving slowly on all my repairs. Granite for the counter top will be the first thing installed. The deck is next. Wednesday it will be torn into to assess the damage. This month certainly has been stressful! I'm just too old and lazy to have to have to deal with it all. My swing was delivered and sent back, all within three days! It just was not what was advertised! My blood pressure has been high for the passed two weeks from it all, but...still so much to be thankful for.

Wedding and shower plans for my Granddaughter are going smoothly, dress bought and being slightly altered, hubby mending after a couple trips to ER, friend cancer free after six chemo treatments, sister making our fall plans for all the house and garden tours, I am still able to look for a swing, and SOON, the weather will cool off! Come to think of it, things can't get any better than this!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Rotting Away

My deck has to be replaced ASAP! The neighborhood woodpecker did a good job alerting me to the rotted wood by pecking away and leaving sawdust on the patio. The Alumawood shade, (an aluminum product made to look like wood) is connected to the deck and has to be removed. Depending on what damage has been done to the deck itself will determine what changes I can make. I want to extend the deck and add a covering over the upstairs window. I am holding my breath for the for estimates--I need new screens and to replace a few leaking windows, as well as some some roof repairs. I mentioned in a previous post about having to replace my granite, and my air conditioner is 17 yrs old and needs to be updated! What happened? Well, it all fell apart about the same time. We patched and covered for years, then, like the corporations and Washington, it had to finally come crumbling down! Now I'm now paying for my designer rose colored glasses, and I don't have anyone to bail me out.

It's those same glasses the rest of the country has been wearing for the last few years as they bought houses they can't afford, sold by RE agents who encouraged them to make 'Liar Loans', brokers who also encouraged the RE agents, and mortgage companies who bought the mortgages assuming the loans were honest. Or maybe they didn't care, as they sold the mortgages to other companies. Maybe. I'm no economist but it is frustrating that we are going to pay for this and have a 10 trillion dollar national debt--plus all the promises of adding another trillion on with giveaway programs the candidates are promising. Who is going to pay? Not just rich people. It's going to be everyone--and they are going to be shocked. S--t, in this case, rolled uphill instead of down and here we are, bailing them out on our dime!

After the recent windstorm that blew over 6 potted cactus plants, I decided to plant them altogether. The pot is 6 inches deep so I don't think they will blow over as easily. I made it into a miniature desert turtle garden. Pretty cute, don't you think?

I just planted this gorgeous hibiscus--and just put the sweet pea seeds in the ground. I cannot wait for the February blooms! We are still hitting around 100 degrees but something in the air that makes me feel like I need to get outside and dig! My swing will be being delivered Tuesday and I can hardly wait! Hoping hubby finds all the parts intact and easy instructions. Some of those instructions written by China are hard to deal with, and it seems everything comes from there!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Wednesday Wanderings

Each evening my two daughters , granddaughter and I walk around our two community lakes. It is still pretty hot and I only walk one 1-1/2 mile lake now. As soon as it cools off, I will finish the second lake with the kids. Yes, I am blessed with having my children and all my grandchildren living within 3 blocks of my home.

About half way home the sun is almost setting . The mountain in the back ground will be destroyed for the shopping center. Not sure how much will be gone.....doesn't make much sense.

I pass by this pygmy date palm on my nightly walk and I will soon be on the hunt for some fresh picked dates. The dates on the pygmy tree are not edible. I will gain 8 lbs. during the two weeks I binge day and night on the dates! I always buy enough to freeze for Thanksgiving and Christmas. But, come Thanksgiving, not one left! It doesn't take them very long to thaw out and anyway, they taste just as good cold. I admit I have a problem but I really don't have a desire to fix it. It only happens twice a year--fig and date season- well maybe more-soon after the date binges comes the pumpkin pie season. That last 2 months..... I just finished the "one a day" watermelon season. They have been expensive this year, costing $5 to $6 each. It is a good thing I never took up drinking--I may have been a raging alcoholic!

Over the years a lot of my binge seasons have disappeared--glazed donuts--ice cream--premium chocolate pinwheel cookies that are available only from March through October. They melt on the shelves. I'm not sure why my addiction to sweets has finally left me. Maybe I replaced it with gardening? Or just maybe Ecclesiastes 3-6, 'to everything there is a season'. It is just time to let some things go.

This neighborhood Ocotillo has kept its leaves throughout out the summer. This is one the best specimen in the neighborhood! Over the years I have planted two--they only lasted a couple years. This Ocotillo is 10-15 years old. I pass by it each day--it almost seems like mine!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Nature's Rhythm

I can't believe how many sunrises I have missed in my in my life! I never liked waking up early, and I've always set the alarm for the last possible minute when I had a choice. This is what I've been missing!

I started getting up early after my sister told me, not long ago, that if we were lucky and statistics were in our favor, that we had only about 250 full moons left in our lifetime. I took it to heart and started watching all sunrises, sunsets, and full moons. I also try to stop and smell most all the roses!

This was taken from my back patio at 6 AM this morning. This was after 0.08 inches of rain.



Tuesday, September 2, 2008

New Swing on the Way

We had a rain/wind storm a few nights ago, and it left a lot of destruction around the area.

This is what's left of my beloved swing. It is a goner, the top frame is bent and the cover torn. I found it the next morning at the side of my house along with a few upturned cactus in containers. The grape ivy vine shown in the first photo covered most all the wall. We cut it back to 18 inches and covered the exposed roots. Hopefully it will recover. The good news is I will be getting a new swing for my 32nd anniversary!

I can't even imagine the destruction Gustav has created. It certainly makes my damage seem minor.

Today, not a cloud in sight! All is peaceful on the lake at dawn.

This is progress here, shaving down of a couple mountains to make way for a shopping center.

Another shopping center one mile away is planned, and a much larger mountain is to be demolished! There are miles and miles of flat land nearby, but that would take less work and would make too much sense to build there. Plus, the other one will be built directly across the street from a grammar school. It's just odd how they decide these things. I really hate seeing hills and mountains demolished for a few stores.

It will be nice though to be able to walk to a grocery store.............