Thursday, August 21, 2008

Green Coffee And The Happy Dance

Daughter Number 2 and I spent a pleasant afternoon yesterday at Starbucks entertaining Baby Loudon and entertaining Starbucks with his squeals and screams (happy ones--he is just learning he has a voice--no volume control). I usually watch him at her house, but we had to evacuate while the realtor showed it.

I am not usually a Starbucks advocate. I don't care for big chain business, and believe in supporting small local businesses. But, I have wanted to visit this particular Starbucks since they opened a year ago because of all the eco-friendly building that went into it. It has two rainwater retention tanks out front and the roof is covered with flats of natural wildflower/grass mix. I saw very little blooming, but I bet it's pretty in the spring. We may not get to see what it looks like in the Fall, as I have read that there are two stores closing in Austin and 56 in Texas, as Starbucks is forced to downsize. This is a picture taken from the upstairs window of Starbucks overlooking the roof of the building.
I am doing the happy dance because it has rained two days this week! The last I looked, the temperature was 86 today! It felt hotter than that because it is so humid, but it is certainly better than one hundred! I'll take it! When I took the pups for their walk tonight, the air was so nice. Not really cool, but pleasant. I felt like I could breath for the first time in months. It felt like Summer 's gripe has been loosened a little. It would be so nice if we were through with the triple digit days for this year. I can tell with the evening sun going down earlier than Fall is coming. Yay!

I finally got a battery for my camera, so hopefully I will be able to start taking pictures again. DH and I are going to Mexico next week, so don't know if I will be able to post before we leave or not. I am wanting to take my camera with me so I can get pictures if I can just remember to do so!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Mid August In The Garden

It's the middle of August, and the hot summer seems endless. The only way we know it is approaching Fall, is the Back-To-School sales in all the stores. Since it was tax-free weekend, everyone was at the malls and shopping centers. I stayed away and avoided the crazy crowds, and actually worked in my garden in the mornings before it got too hot. It was quite pleasant early Saturday morning, and I took full advantage.

Scratcher and Frisky (AKA Special K) are found in their natural state of Sprawl. But then, when you have a fur coat what else can you do when the temperature is over 100 degrees in the shade?

The white dots on the Purple Heart, are actually water drops. Funny how it came out on my camera.

This time of year, I let the Basil go to seed. The bees love the flowers, and I have harvested and made all the pesto my freezer can hold! It will probably get us through January or February (we love pesto). LOL!

The gardenias continue to make their fragrant presence known.

I just love the way the Morning Glories look like they are craning their heads to be the first one to catch that first ray of morning light.

I tried so hard to get a shot of the honey bees at work on the Purple Heart, but they are so quick, I never could. It was really surprising at all the blooms that actually looked good this time of year.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Piano Man

Roll Over Beethoven, Loudon Has Come To Play!

Grandson Loudon has just started pulling up this week, and his mom put his playpen in front of the piano. He loves to touch the keys, and then pause to look at you--and wait for the applause, which naturally he gets.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Dogs + Skunks = Nothing Good!

Bocephus and Christina vs. Pepe Le Pew

(Dogs 0 - Skunk 100 gabillion)

As I sit here typing, I have a headache from smelling--fumes. It was so hot Friday, I didn’t take the vegetable scraps out to the compost pile until after dark. The dogs always have to go with me to smell exactly what I am throwing away and make sure it isn’t anything they want. Christina is a Lab/Shepherd mix that takes her job of patrolling the parameters very seriously. Her biggest thrill in life is to chase squirrels. I am sure when she saw the intruder in the compost pile, she thought SQUIRREL, but then, she has never encountered a skunk before--until now that is! Pepe Le Pew (accent on the PEW), got her smack in the face. Bo was right behind her, and he got it more on his neck and side. I don’t think my blue flower garden will ever look--or smell the same. Pepe couldn’t exit fast enough, and at this point neither could the dogs. Chrissy went into a snorting and diving into the grass mode. The spray burning her eyes. I didn’t get hit, and it was making my eyes burn.
We called the vet, and he told us to flush their eyes with water, mineral oil, and contact solution. He said tomato juice doesn’t work very well, and to wash them with a hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, dishwashing liquid mix, let it sit for five minutes, and do it three times total. As soon as we put the solution on them, it fizzed up and drove the dogs crazy. They would take off like a streak of lightening, rolling and diving into the grass every so often. After five minutes we would grab one, hose it off, reapply, and grab the next. By the time we were through, the smell was less strong, but by no means gone. I have been washing, burning candles, and spraying room freshener all weekend. The dogs won’t go near the corner where they encountered little Pepe. I am rethinking my distain of compost containers.

Bo and Chrissy with Granddog Mojo in happier, less stinky times...

The rest of the pictures are what is blooming in my garden right now, even if it is looking a bit weary.