Saturday, June 18, 2022



At the end of April we planted a bunch of seeds; made mental notes as to what was planted where; watered and pampered them along until some green popped up. 

We felt so clever.

 A whole forest of dill, several different kinds of lettuce, parsley, sage, cilantro, tomatoes and several different kinds of peppers. The OC likes peppers -  the hotter the better, understandable since, as a small child in Argentina, he ate hot peppers as snacks, the way a normal child would eat candy. As for me, give me some chicken and potatoes, a little salad on the side and pass the salt please. As they grew we were particularly intrigued with one plant that seemed to be doing better than all the other peppers we'd planted.

 "What kind of pepper is this one?" I asked the OC, who is, after all, the CEO of the garden. 

"Not sure," he replied, "but we'll find out by and by." 

Well, by and by came along and our lovely pepper plant developed some interesting buds. A few days later one of the buds started to open revealing a beautiful redish-wine color. 

Finally the penny dropped! That's no pepper - that's the hibiscus we'd thought was over there! We'd planted the hibiscus seeds for fun, not confident that they would actually grow. Of course we're delighted that they did but, lesson learned, we'll not trust to memory next time but physically label everything!

Sunday, June 05, 2022

I Can See Clearly Now


Yup. Nothing to do with computers but rather with those pieces of glass that turn a dwelling from a gloomy cave into a bright living space into which the sun can shine.

Which would you rather live in?

Me too.

But washing windows? Seriously? Not in my top ten favorite things to do. Doesn't even make it into the top twenty. There are forces driving me in any direction but the washing of windows.

Sure, I could hire someone to do the job. But ah. Would they do it right? There's the rub. As thoroughly as I would when motivated, which does happen, though not often enough. But this month - ta da! It's happening. 

Even though at any hour of the day, any day of the week, any week of the year I'd rather be reading, stitching, puttering in the garden, collecting seashells at the beach or pretty leaves at the park for projects yet to be decided upon, it got to a point where, if I didn't address the window issue, we'd soon be living in a cave.

Buckets of water were commandeered, along with Pine Sol, rubber gloves, rags, paper towels, Windex and a step stool. 

For the past week I've been washing windows;

 scouring mud from frames; removing, scrubbing and hosing down screens; evicting an army of  disgruntled spiders and any number of tiny twigs from the tight spaces in which they had set up their housekeeping and reproduction facilities.  At least they looked like little twigs. It wasn't until they wriggled that I realized they were tiny creepy crawly centipedes - agh!

My mother-in-law never wasted her time on the kinds of activities I engage in to avoid or defer domestic chores. Whenever she arrived for a visit, no matter how frantic my last-minute dusting, sweeping and polishing had been, as soon as she'd taken off her coat, she'd set herself to cleaning. Which always got me silently seething. We did not live in squalor! Our house was clean enough! But not for her. In spite of resenting the implicit criticism, I knew from whence her passion came. Having lost everything and every place she loved in the war, she treasured what she'd won back through hard work and perseverance - and she kept it all spotless. And now, those same hardships that had driven her from her home to the other side of the world are happening again to her fellow countrymen. I'm glad she's not here to see it.

But, back to the windows. They're why I haven't blogged this past week. But wait, you say. What about all those other empty weeks? Hmm. Laziness? No inspiration? Too many good books, too many stitching projects? Horror at the brutality, war and intolerance that parts of the human race are inflicting on other parts? Maybe all of the above, and then some. 

Who knew that window washing would be what finally shook me out of my lethargy? But there was another motivating factor. A few days ago, a long-time fellow blogger threatened to quit. I tried to comment, to say Oh no, please don't go! But Blogger wouldn't let me. Why they have to change what was working perfectly well is beyond me. So, this is for you Pam - Please don't go!

Meanwhile, though I'll never be, nor even aspire to be, the domestic goddess my mother-in-law was, there is satisfaction in clean and gleaming windows.

And in not living in a cave.