May 2019 

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"It's not about me."

THR, 2018

Scroll down to May 9 for latest entry.

 

Queen Anne's Lace


Wednesday, May 1, 2019

THR

For at least the last ten years, May has been what I call "Me-Month." That's when I get to rest from spring cleaning and garden work to sit pretty on the patio with a favorite children's book such as "Wind In the Willows," paint my nails, drink exotic juices, and bring my arms and legs into sunlight again.  It's all about me and how I want to spend this fresh new month. 

May is a good month for such a thing, because the whole world around me is coming out of its winter stalemate, but it's not quite hot enough yet to wilt my enthusiasm.  There is a chance this pampering might do some good.  

I found a wonderful magazine at the grocery store all about artists' studios and how they go about their work of creating. . . just the kind of inspiration Me Month is all about.  Each artist was sucessful, young, and adventurous--exactly how I imagined myself during this carefree month!  I brought it home to read during mid-day sun breaks.  

As soon as time allowed, I made a bowl of chicken salad with pecans and dried cranberries, found some special wheat crackers, and poured myself a glass of mixed juices with sweet tea. . . mango, coconut, and apple. 

Then I chose just the right plate for my first Me Month lunch.  I decided on the new turquoise one with the large red strawberry in the middle.  Once everything was arranged to my liking, I carried the colorful plate, along with my new magazine, to the round wood table on the patio.  The sunny patio.   

The sky was deep blue and clear.  A moderate breeze passing through the oaks and pines was the only sound--no lawn mowers, no racing cars.   I turned up the Etta Baker music and left the back door open for Tucker the Dog to go in and out at will--Dog Version of Me Month. 

All was well on this first day of May.  

Tomorrow, I decided after lunch, I would paint my nails and make a list or two.  Something like "Things That Refresh Me" perhaps, or "What I Love About Our Porch."  Small things, important only to me.  

I closed my magazine and looked at the beautiful field of green just past the blueberry bush.  Everywhere around me were wild strawberries in bloom, and honeysuckle vines covering fences with creamy blossoms that filled the air with their delicate perfume.  It was as good a beginning to Me Month as I could have hoped for. 

May is my "wildwood" vacation time, perfect in its simple, quiet beauty.  Each day I have less to say and less to fret about.  When it's over, I am relaxed more than at any other time of the year.  Then I know it's not really about me anyway.  

And that's a good thing.  

Tucker On Watch

"Listen up, cause I got nothin' to say,

and I'm only gonna say it once."

Yogi Berra, Baseball Personality

Until next time,

The Head Rabbit

Friday, May 3, 2019

Except for one or two cool days, the weather has done a good job of warming everything up, outside and in.  We passed our mid-April frost date, so I expect the flowers and fruit trees to suffer no further winter loss. It's all uphill to summer.

Just recently I got out our plastic owl with the big glass eyes to see if I could scare a few squirrels from the blueberry bushes.  I know for a fact they are checking out the tiny, pin-sized berry buds already.  The cheaply-made owl is not the most convincing preditor in the garden, but plastic was all I could find.  Sometimes you grab whatever is handy, plastic or not.  Desperation calls for desparate measures.    

Owl on the Prowl

The owl is about 18 inches tall and full of righteous intimidation.  He's not as handsome as this art picture I made of him.  In real life, he's brown and gray, more like a real owl.  When I bought him two years ago at the feed and seed store, the man at the checkout said, "Trying to scare away some squirrels?"  

I said yes and left it at that.  We both knew it would probably not work.   

It did work for a short while, though.  Long enough to convince me to store it in the potting shed for another 2 winters.  I have to set it upright every day, since it is light as a feather (no pun intended), and falls over at the slightest bit of breeze.  An owl laying on its side is only half a threat at best, and no threat at all to a quick-witted squirrel.   

This spring, in the early morning and late evenings, My husband and I have begun to hear a very real owl echo his haunting call into the Woods Out Back.  It's a slow, deep sound that comes out of perfect silence, and we usually don't recognize it until the 3rd or 4th call.   

My husband is always the first to take note.  "There it is," he says, and he stops again to listen. "Did you hear that?  It's the owl."  Then I listen carefully, and once only, or if I'm lucky, two times I too hear the lonesome sound.  It's as if the owl knows instantly that we are straining to hear him, so he hides back into the night.  But it's too late!  Like two stealth outsiders, we hear what no one else has heard.  Or so it seems. 

 

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I often think that the night is more alive and more richly colored than the day.

Vincent Van Gogh

Sun Sets Into Night

Until next time,

The Head Rabbit

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Southern Living

A friend of mine sent me a picture today of her patio garden.  She had planted lemon balm and moonbeam coreopsis as well as  several larger potted plants.  Nice.

She hesitated to call it a "garden," because of the small size, but I had no problem calling it exactly that.   

"Of course it's a garden," I thought.  

It reminded me of my sister's home in the pines, in the pines of north Florida.  "The Big House," we called it.  She has always loved large potted plants.  Big house, big pots.  You can see how well it all worked. 

Anyway, she arranged several miniature patios or outside areas around her home on which to place her big pots of flowers. They were wonderful, close-up seating arrangements just outside each of several doors.  You could get lost if you went out alone.  

We could take a sandwich or cup of hot tea with us, maybe even a hat, and feel like a true southern lady.  The chairs always had plush, colorful pillows and there were small side tables for our drinks or food.  The pots were like miniature gardens, each one different.  They had tall spikes and bright red flowers, and delicate yellow things hanging over the sides.  No spot on any pot was left unplanted.  The highlight of the day for me was deciding which "garden patio" to sit on next.  

I was in heaven.

It wasn't just the outside patios that had charm.  Inside were wonderful cottage floral sheets on the beds and a pantry full of unhealthy, delicious snacks.  I could eat randomly and with abandon.  At night after everyone went to sleep, the whole house, upstairs and down, glowed with amber-colored light, always saying, "You're up!  Good!  I was hoping you would be."  It was as if a small lamp was left on in every room, and maybe it was.  

I often say to my family:  "It only takes two people to make a party."  In the same way, it only takes one pot of flowers to make a garden. 

As things stand now, I have three places I can call "garden."  Each is small and two--no, all three--include places to "sit a spell."  

Next I'll work on the floral sheets.  

Corner of the Garden

"The outside world doesn't have a lot to offer.  You have to make your own heaven in your own home." 

Bette Midler, singer/actress 

Until next time,

The Head Rabbit