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...I bust my ass moving my grandmother's lemon tree outside!

I always let the tree dry out as much as possible before I move it -- to make it as light as possible! I bought a new flat dolly this year -- which helped A LOT!


Back outside for summer and fall!


The date this year is not much different from usual -- I have a spreadsheet where I record in and out days. The tree spends about 7.4 months of the year outdoors.

Happy Ostara!
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
Family Christmas dinner and gift exchange was very pleasant this year. I'm glad that one sister likes to make dinner and host -- it would be hard each year if we had to decide how to meet! I put in an extra gift card for that sister to thank her for doing Thanksgiving and Christmas every year! I know how much work it is!

****
In addition to the holidays, I have been getting rid of stuff -- I like the idea of a 'Death Cleaning' -- not that I'm planning on needing to do that just yet, lol! But it's a good idea. So I have instituted a "1 thing in, 1 thing out" rule -- meaning, when I get gifts, I try to find something that I can donate or pitch out.

Yesterday, I took this load to a local thrift store --


And I also put this stuff in my alley. Many times, things in the alley get picked up, so it makes me feel like they are getting used instead of throwing away.


That toilet has been in the basement since 2005 when I replaced it with a newer one in my downstairs bathroom!
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
Twice a year I move my grandmother's lemon tree - outside in the spring and inside for the winter. Today was the winter move to indoors.

Couple of things:
1) The pot I transplanted the tree into last year has nothing to grab hold to, so it's really hard to grab it to lift.
2) Usually I withhold water so that the tree dries out -- so that it is as light as possible. But this year, it has rained nearly all year, and even though I put plastic over the pot last week, it didn't help -- water always finds a way.
3) The tree is much fuller than usual because I fertilized it regularly last year.
4) I am no longer a spring chicken, and lifting the tree is just hard.

I say this to say that the tree was ENORMOUSLY HEAVY! I mean damn -- I could not lift it by myself this year! I got a friend to help, but it was still very difficult. And I am now exhausted!

karmicdragonfly: (Default)
We don't have them often here, but the area experienced multiple tornadoes yesterday. There are pictures on Twitter of many funnels around town, and the tornadoes touched down and caused damage in at least 2 places.

At work, we were in the stairwell for 20 minutes or so, after which I just came home. Tornadoes are not unheard of here -- but it has been a while!

It made for a tense evening, so I self-medicated with white wine and "chill" music, lol.

***
On a different note, I am becoming a gentlemen d'une certaine âge, and I now have more than 1 doctor.

For example, today I had an appointment with a urologist, an appointment I made at the request of my primary care physician. A couple years ago, I previously saw a urologist (and even had a prostate biopsy to make sure there was no cancer!), but I didn't particularly see a reason to continue going.

Today's appointment was at the local medical school, and the young resident doctor had the job of giving me the standard digital rectal exam....let's say he was, um, just a bit more thorough than some.

Some DREs are very quick, to the point that you barely realize it happened. This one? No so quick! He felt up one side of the prostate, and down around the other side. I may be a gay man, but having your pants and underwear down around your ankles with you bent over face down into a chair at a doctor's office is NOT sexy, lol! But also, as a gay man, I probably have less problem with the exam than some hetero guys.

Luckily, no cause found for concern, and no appointment needed for another year...
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
It's been a long time since I have ridden a bike in the rain! I haven't been riding much this year -- it's always raining! But I've been missing it a lot!

Today, I was bound and determined to ride just a little, so while I was having breakfast, I checked Accuweather -- "No precipitation for next 120 minutes" -- great! I get dressed, get some air in the tires and a water bottle full...and as I was leaving, I check Accuweather again -- "Rain starting in 15 minutes" What, lol???

"Light" rain it said. LIGHT rain, lol...so I went out, knowing that I might get a bit wet. Well, it rained harder than "light", and I came home sopping wet...I hadn't ridden in the rain in years, so it was sort of fun! I cut the ride short and only rode about 7 miles, but it was nice to be on the bike again!


****
It's nearly Fall, so I'm getting the last of the veggies from the garden -- tomatoes and bell peppers. The kind of bell pepper that I grow turns brown ("chocolate bell pepper") -- it doesn't change the taste.




I am also prepping 'the girls' with new batteries -- these are my normal Halloween decorations.


****
There have been a few butterflies in the garden lately - this Red Spotted Purple was out a few days ago --
Red Spotted Purple on Butterfly Bush

****
Lucky for us, Hurricane Florence was pushed more south for landfall, so we only got cloudy showers from it. "She" is supposed to turn and go northwest, but it seems only more rainy showers for us. Again....we are lucky in that regard. I believe I have a roof leak, based on the unpleasant, musty smell in my bedroom at home, so I have called a roofer to come and inspect the roof.

****
Book club was enjoyable this past week...I did have an interesting situation that has stuck with me.

When we were talking about the book, there was discussion of which actors and actresses would be best to play the part if there were to be a screen play. Some of the actors and actresses were unfamiliar to me, so I would search for them and find a picture online, then I would show the group to make sure this was the right person.

During the discussion, one of the guys mentioned that he hated that I was doing that because each time I searched for a name and showed the picture, it would bring the conversation to a close...lol....that surprised me. I mean, what else would you do but look up stuff online?

It wasn't a bad comment or situation or anything -- just surprised me that 'googling' wasn't just standard operating procedure when you're having a conversation, lol! Seriously, why would you NOT search, if you don't know who that person is???

Now don't get me wrong...I do sometimes find myself in situations where someone uses a phone or laptop while I'm talking to them, and it's completely frustrating. There is a friend who visits who will get lost in his phone or laptop for minutes at a time...to the detriment of conversation -- and I really find that frustrating. Now that I think of it, maybe I'll turn off my WIFI the next time he does that since I can control my WIFI from my phone, lol...

But that was not this situation at book club - in this case I, in-my-not-so-humble-opinion, was contributing to the conversation, lol!

Speaking of which, I need to begin reading the next book -- I put less time to reading now, and reading is harder to do since I have been trained to 'skim' online...a friend and I had a related discussion the other night. I was finding words in Wikipedia which I considered old and too formal for Wikipedia -- I thought Wiki entries should be written at a 7th - 8th grade level...and some of the words I was finding in articles would NOT be appropriate for that level. He disagreed, but seriously, when was the last time you said or wrote 'virtuosic'??? It's a fine word, but I think our language is changing, and those sorts of 'odd' words slow my reading down.

That reminds me that I need to watch the movie "Idiocracy"...lol

karmicdragonfly: (Default)
I haven't been posting too much lately...my life has been less than exciting, sad to say. I've been taking care of stuff at home, working...had one of our "whiskey nights" with my whiskey compatriot...catching up on old TV series on Netflix...that sort of thing.

Still getting plenty of cherry tomatoes from the garden -- I really should be making sauce and freezing it instead of stuffing my face with them! And if I eat too many tomatoes, the acid tends to make my skin break out...so there's that...but I do love them fresh off the vine!

I'm wondering if I have the beginnings of a roof leak upstairs -- I cannot see any water damage, but my bedroom suddenly has a different 'smell' than I'm used to -- not a bad smell, just a change. With all the rain we have had this year, it wouldn't surprise me that the roof, which is past its prime, has developed a leak!

Hanging out with the camera lately --
Very dramatic home decor!

Silvery Checkerspots making more butterflies :)

I think I should schedule a trip to Scotland and Ireland...I have never been to the British Isles. And I would like another overseas trip!

Listening to differing versions of Infinito Particular -- I find this song soothing --





Ever loved an invasive weed, lol? This clematis -- Clematis terniflora is so much more invasive than the native Clematis virginiana, and it grows everywhere, and I'm constantly pulling it up...but it smells very nice! And it is one of the few blooming plants in the Fall...
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
A day of mowing the lawn, watering new plants, etc...but I started off by taking some bee pictures in the front yard. #Priorities

I titled this one 'Bee-rise' because it looked like a sun or moonrise, except it was a bee coming up over the cone :)
Bee-rise

I always like to get bees in flight. This one was shortly after taking off...not a perfect photo, but nice enough.
Liftoff!

karmicdragonfly: (Default)
...or is it JUST ME?

Funny that I find myself muttering / talking to myself in half English and half Portuguese...like I was looking at the weather the other day, saying "Oh, it's gonna be raining no Sábado" -- It's gonna be raining on Saturday!

Stayed home sick today with some allergy symptoms. It's a little bizarre -- Spring came...with my accompanying allergies...but it's supposed to snow this weekend!

I needed a piece of 'home decor' in the living room, so I had a print made of a photo I took of a statue at the Grand Palace in Bangkok back in 2013. The trip is a good memory.

This print was delivered today. I think this is a Kinnara. Or maybe it is a 'Kinnon' -- male version of Kinnara.


I like hanging pictures in the house that I have taken myself.
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
The 3 day weekend was fun at times, productive at other times, and a bit slow sometimes too. Friend over last night to hang out and order pizza...friend over for wine and today a friend and I walked around an exhibit at the fine arts museum.



Caught up on one of my guilty pleasure TV shows...

I was busy outside some days pulling ivy and preparing the garden spot for when it's warm enough to plant.

But the rain and the cold also meant that I was a slug today.
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
I was moving a little slow this morning -- a friend came over for wine last night, and I may have had a bit too much fruit of the vine!

Today, I pulled English ivy -- a perennial chore that is never completed. My goal is just to keep the ivy from taking completely over. Today I was working on an area that I have neglected for a few years, which has enabled the ivy to become older and thicker. I'm pretty tired...


Started some seeds indoors - tomatoes and bell peppers -- to be transplanted later in the year.


And I got a rain barrel set up. It may be a bit early for this because freezing temps can crack the plastic. It's supposed to be fairly warm for the next couple weeks, but if I see a hard freeze coming, then I'll have to empty it and turn it upside down.


The plan is to have a nice quiet rest of the day - I have a movie already downloaded!
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
It felt really good to get to the river today -- 60+ degrees and very relaxing!

My sister is starting to feel better, but is still not completely well (and the youngest sister took her to the doctor yesterday), so we cancelled the family Thanksgiving meal. (I think my Mom and other sister went shopping instead).

I really needed some time where I wasn't cooking, wasn't decorating, wasn't cleaning or planning or ... or... or...just time to enjoy the river!

Along the river

Along the river

Along the river

Here's an animated GIF of one of the urban infrastructure constructions that dot the river. I made this by taking a 'live photo' in iOS, then setting it to 'loop' in the options (scroll down from the photo), then using the Lively app to turn it into an animated GIF.

I noticed on the Mac's big screen that the center column seems to sway back and forth -- due to my movement when I took the picture -- and I like the effect! I had not noticed that on the phone.

If you are able to zoom in, you can see an 'eye' painted inside the 2nd from the left arch.



I got lights on the trees in front of the house yesterday. I like them, but they are pretty bright! They cast shadows inside the house. Hopefully the neighbors won't mind -- just for the holiday season!
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
Had tea and pastry w/ Nh yesterday. He thinks he looks awkward in this pic, which is probably true...but I like the pic anyway!
Having tea with a friend

The Elderberry tea I had was pretty, but not to my liking. The smell of it was not great either...so I won't have that again.


Upcoming week will be very busy -AND- I will be bloated by the end -- I'm up to 3 Thanksgiving dinners at this point!

Hawk in the yard today --
Neighborhood hawk
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
Hard freeze coming tonight, so this was the day I had to get my Grandmother's lemon tree inside...I had repotted it to a larger pot, and didn't pay attention to the lack of a 'lip' around the pot -- I used to lift up on the 'lip' that surrounded the clay pot. This pot is completely smooth...so this year, I bought a hand truck.

I tie up the tree before I move it to make it as narrow as possible. The pot barely fit onto the truck lift! And I used bungee cords to hold the tree and pot onto the truck.


Still hard to move, even with the hand truck! And VERY messy because to get the tree inside, I had to tilt it enough that it pour dirt onto the floor. I also had to chop it again because otherwise I was going to have to tilt it throughout the house (and spill dirt) to get through the doorways.


Lemon trees have thorns. Here is one that broke off during the transport --


And the tree got one good thorn swipe to my face! (I wear hat and glasses during the move, but I had taken them off when I was unwrapping the rope inside) --


Tree is now in its Winter home --



I had been wondering how long the tree spends outside each year, so I searched this journal and my calendar, etc. for whatever dates I could find. Based on what I could find, it seems the tree spends about 7.5 months outside on average each year.
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
A couple friends and I walked around 1st Fridays, which was also combined with InLight this year. I didn't take too many pictures, but here are a couple of some of the art work --




And a gif of the lights on Gallery 5 --



The other big thing that happened yesterday was that I took delivery on a new mattress! My old mattress was at the 16 year mark, and had become uncomfortable. The new one is a combination spring and foam mattress, and it's made locally, which I consider a plus.


The new one is taller than the older one, and in the middle of the night after I got up to pee, I noticed in my semi-asleep state that I had to pay attention to climbing back into bed!


The bed felt good last night!   No pressure points, and I could feel the foam filling in the curves of my side.  The first thing I noticed was that I didn’t need to constantly turn side to side when I first got into the bed. Because there was no pressure on my hip/shoulder, there was no need to flip over and back, the way I used to have to on the old mattress.

The covers on the bed were hardly moved at all. Good signs for a hopefully improved sleep in the future!


Just got 'the girls' inside -- the ghostly Halloween decorations are done for another year. They are pretty tragic looking, lying in the basement. A friend thinks I have a lot of creepy stuff in my basement, lol!

Now

14 Oct 2017 16:44
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
Still getting some tomatoes out back -- it's been a warm Fall! They taste good, and I like the idea of eating what I grow...


Working around the house some lately -- I planted 90+ tulip bulbs today for next Spring. And I got "the girls" out for Halloween --


The "Girls" are out for Halloween!

The "Girls" are out for Halloween!

The "Girls" are out for Halloween!

Been pretty quiet on the social front this week -- I did make it to this month's book club, which was fun. Still having some medicine reaction issues...hopefully working through it. Otherwise, just being a homebody lately!

I decided to take the 3 month free subscription to Apple Music. I had tried Spotify -- but that seemed to be more about "playlists", and it didn't play what I liked. Pandora is repetitive. So far, I'm enjoying AM --


karmicdragonfly: (Default)
I spent a lot of time with the camera this weekend! It was good and I enjoyed myself, but I have given myself a rest period today...I noticed the bikers returning from the races in the park tonight...I'd like to get over there and practice my panning on them before they stop for the Fall!

I had not been completely satisfied with the hummingbird pictures...at least until yesterday when I got a couple pics that I liked!
Ruby Throated Hummingbird

Hummingbird sitting in a tree

This one was when I put the camera on its back under the feeder, taking pictures at intervals --
From underneath the hummingbird feeder

Originally, I was hand-holding the camera, but when I walked too close to the feeder, the birds flew away.

Then, I put the camera on the tripod taking intervals. But I wasn't happy with the shutter motion or depth of field focus.

The final solution was to stand in place near the porch but in the garden...and they returned. Often it was about 10 minutes before they stopped by my feeder. As long as I was slow in motion while photo taking, they seemed to be okay with me being there.
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
I liked this silhouette of a hummingbird sitting in the Crepe Myrtle out front.
Hummingbird Silhouette


The hummingbird is still a bit shy of me, so I can't get too close. The pic below is heavily cropped. It surprises me because in most situations, I have found that hummingbirds don't mind humans. Maybe this bird has just not had very much human exposure.
Hummingbird Sittin' in a Tree...
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
It was a cloudy evening, under the porch, so my photos were very noisy! But I got some pics of hummingbirds visiting the feeder I just hung!

Ruby-throated hummingbird

Pics

6 May 2017 22:45
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
Rosa 'Tahitian Sunset'
Rosa "Tahitian Sunset"


An edit of a photo from 2008 --
"Postcard" from the Golden Gate in 2008


Rosa 'Zephrine Drouhin' which I planted years ago between my neighbor and me --
Rosa 'Zerphrine Drouhin'
karmicdragonfly: (Default)
I thought I had already posted this, but I couldn't find it. A few weeks ago, I was mowing the grass, and I saw this cute little baby bunny under the tulips! So cute, so I stopped and took pics with my phone!

Mind you, I was NOT mowing the tulips -- only the grass! But when I came up the other side and got close, I saw the baby bunny run away. And I then I saw baby bunny #2 run a different direction. And I thought, awwww, how cute!

And then...and then...I heard and felt WOMP-WOMP-WOMP under the lawnmower! Baby bunny #3 had run under my lawnmower!!! It was bad...completely by accident...but I didn't even like looking at the pile of bloody baby bunny in the grass!

Anyways, my area of town is overrun with rabbits, and the remaining 2 bunnies have matured a lot in a few weeks! I've noticed a couple of hawks flying and perching here lately, so they also have noticed our abundance of rabbits!
A lazy Sunday evening...

Do you think the rabbits know that I'm a vegetarian?

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"O seguro morreu de velho, mas o desconfiado ainda está vivo." -- "The safe one died of old age, but the suspicious one is still living."





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