Sunday, June 30, 2019

June 2019

Hello everyone, I'm coming down with a cold and with my diabetes, it may turn into something worse, like bronchitis, or it may just linger for a long time. Or I may be OK tomorrow. 

Because I don't know, I will take a blogger break after today, get some rest, and come back when I feel better. I must be back by 7/7 because someone has a big birthday then. Samson will be 10!!! 

I will read blogs on my Kindle, but I can't leave comments because I find it so hard to do all that thumb writing. 

Here's an update on the month of June.

June came roaring in with a rain and hail storm, accompanied by flash flood warnings. 

The storm only created a muddy mess. Seeing how so much of the rest of the country suffered with tornadoes and floods, this was nothing, just a surprise rain at a time when we usually don't get any. It may well have been the last rain we see until November. I heard more rain storms may come during the summer months, which would be nice. 

I continued with my green smoothies and, after about a month, began to feel something I had not felt for the past  two years - ENERGY! I thought it was normal for me to feel so tired, both due to the diabetes and my advancing age.

I came up with a fast way to rinse off the blender and just set it on the counter. It helped to have a designated space for it. I'm lazy in the kitchen, so anything that helps me do what I need to do is a good thing.

The metal shed got cleaned out and demolished.

Flowers that disappeared in the drought returned, as did chipmunks and loggerhead shrikes. I'm hoping the Western meadow lark and many other birds I haven't seen for a while will came back as well. Maybe a bear and some bobcats?? 

Still, we had some drama here. The Guernsey bull is now fully grown and there was a real bull fight where he got injured. Then he injured his leg. Here he's kept outside the fence, but still challenging the Devon bull. Joyce has to keep him separated from the rest of the herd while his leg heals. Then she may have to sell him. He's my favorite, so I will miss him, but two fullgrown bulls is one bull too may.

While I took pictures of the bulls, the rest of the herd looked on with interest. That's Ears or Angelears to the right. How she's grown so fast.

Joyce and I visited Sally, an English friend of hers. We went to see these puppies. They were only five days old and so cute.

Sally has a large, very English, garden at the other side of town. What she has accomplished in this dry climate is amazing. 

It was a huge surprise and so much fun to meander around, seeing hundreds of plants, one surprise after another. I loved the day -- and, of course, we were treated to English tea and biscuits before we left. 

Back home, the weeds grew scarily tall. 

And began to dry out. I have the 100 ft. clearance around my house, that's all this year. The tractor guy used to do this field and all my surrounding fields as well, but since we borrowed the tractor and I wasn't sure how much Mark was comfortable doing, we only did the required 100 ft.

Then it was Midsummer's Eve in Sweden, coinciding with the summer solstice and my birthday this year. I had several great surprises on my birthday and, according to my niece, it's not over yet. I will drive to Lancaster to visit with them in the coming weeks. It's only about 45 miles away.

Two new neighbors moved in on Joyce's property. They are both men, one brought three horses and a pony; the other a sweet dog named Cheyenne. 

As new people and critters arrived, old things had to go, including the old tow truck that I like so much. When an opportunity presented itself and someone really wanted it, I couldn't say no. 

Faith on my bed (not on her Blankie, where she's supposed to be) contemplating something. She often looks like she's deep in thought, more so than any other dog I have lived with. 

Finally, poor Samson, who was dirtier after this long, cold, and wet winter with a thick and matted undercoat, much worse than it has ever been, went to the groomers and came back white, fluffy and much relieved to be rid of all that fur. 

Bad mommy, me! 

It's clear  that I need to take better care of him, well, I knew that of course, and believe me, the guilt has been present, but so has my tiredness and feeling unwell. Now that the green drinks have provided some energy, I will work with him, beginning right now, while he's clean and trimmed back. Then I just have to keep taking him to the groomers throughout the year. 

So that was our month of June. A pretty good month with much accomplished thanks to good people all around. 

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Rust ~ Post No. 26

From the Hogwash collection.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Notes From The Canyon

Sugarloaf mountain and very green Rabbit Brush bushes.

When I first saw these flowers years ago, I so admired them growing in the sand close to the road.

They completely disappeared during the dry years, now they are back. It was good to see them again. Nature is amazing when given half a chance.

Most of the junk around here was left by others who lived here. This shed was a combination of other's junk and ours. Mark and Ronica cleaned it out for me. A horrible job that scattered at least a hundred mice every which way. One ending up in my bathroom. Don't know where it is now, I've seen no sign of it since.

They borrowed Joyce's tractor and demolished the metal part of the shed. Later they came back and cut up the floor and took the wood to the dump. We're saving all metal until we are done, then they know someone who'll come and pick it up.

The other day, the dogs went bananas, barking like their world was about to come to an end. I opened the back door and by their fence was Joyce's big chestnut horse. Faith dashed at him and scared him and his companions into a short, but thunderous, gallop. When they realized no harm was coming their way, they settled in for a snack in my front yard. A treat for me. Faith was proud to have scared three such big critters. 

Talk about being scared: We all are really scared and worried about the way the weeds took off after all the rain we had. As you can see in the background here, some of them are drying out and the rest will follow. They are so thick and so tall and this field, which borders the road is a huge concern. The fire risk seems to have increased by a lot. I will talk more about what I have decided to do in another post. Mainly be as prepared as I can be. 

Believe it or not, but Mark wanted the old tow truck. He priced it at $100 and he worked it off by cleaning out the shed I wrote about above. All I paid for was the fee at the dump for some of the junk. The truck doesn't seem to want to leave because Mark hasn't been able to get it on the trailer. I will miss it, but the more junk I can get rid of, the better. Mark's coming back to try again today, I hope it will work then. 

Bob and his three horses and the pony, named Pony, have now moved in up by the barn we used to own. I'm so glad to see it coming to good use. Pony was abused and gets stressed every now and then, like PTSD, and then she escapes. So that's why the electric fence is there. Maybe something will replace it later. She is the cutest little pony and I get so angry thinking about someone hurting her. So glad she's with Bob now, because he's a true horse whisperer and very kind and good with all animals.

It was so much fun to see Joyce's three horses get super excited over the new arrivals. When they came with the first horse trailer, her horses knew a horse was in it and went completely nuts. They neighed and neighed some more, then followed the trailer up the road at a full gallop, which, for me, is one of the most magnificent things to see, ever.

I also met the other guy who moved in to the right of the barn, a bit away. He seems very nice. It feels good to have neighbors close by, yet unseen by me and my dogs, unless we choose to go and visit.

The only additional noise I hear is when Joyce's horses are talking to Bob's horses. And horse speak is music to my ears, so that I don't mind. 

Friday, June 21, 2019

Midsummer's Eve, Summer Solstice, My Birthday

For me, it doesn't get much better than this. I'm romantically in love with Sweden in June. I love to have my birthday on the longest, lightest day of the year. Other than that, I don't pay much attention to my birthday these days. A mild amusement that I've made it this far, perhaps. 

Below are some pictures, posted many times before, from Christina and her sister Inga's country place. This is what I think of when I think of that poem I mentioned a few posts earlier. 

On my 2005 visit, I picked seven different wildflowers. According to tradition, if a young woman places them under her pillow, she will dream of her husband to be.

Wild strawberries.

 Inga and Christina have a magnificent garden every year. I'm sure they still do. 

 Gorgeous flowers and all kinds of vegetables grow there.

 A view from underneath an old birch tree. 

A Swedish meadow, strangely not too different looking from ours this year. 

Midsummer night

The old Midsummer tradition of dancing around the Maypole dressed in folk costumes still carries on.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Rust ~ Post No. 25

My friend Jane is back from her and her husband's latest trip to Tanzania. She said there wasn't much rust to be found in the Serengeti, so she sent this from a trip they took to Italy last year.

I fell in love with it and posted it in my sidebar to keep there for a long time. Isn't it the best rust photo ever?

Earlier, she sent me this from Tanzania:

I love how they are all lined up in a row of stripes, drinking. A sort of dizzying effect, reminiscent of 1960's psychedelic art. I wonder if this confuses their predators as well.

It's very special to me to have a friend who thinks of me in the midst of her adventures abroad. Thank you, Jane.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Oh, To Be In England ~ Part 2

No words necessary here, except to say that the puppy picture is not good. I didn't want to take more because I didn't know the dog and felt she needed to be at peace with her pups. They were only five days old, after all. 

I don't remember her name, but she was a beautiful dog and the first Saluki I met in my life. 

What's an English garden without a ginger cat? I met two actually, both boys. There were also two girls, not ginger, but they were not at home. Or hiding somewhere, perhaps, as cats are wont to do. 

The garden went on and on and was ever changing. This is my favorite picture, California poppies in a field, a white fence with rolling green hills in the background. 


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