O Sun, wherefore art thou?

Hey there,

O Sun, wherefore art thou?  That doesn’t sound so much like complaining, does it?  Fancy. 🙂

Took a wee break and now I’m back.  Did you miss me? 🙂

Two words:  New. Phone.

Two more words:  @#!&%!! Frustrating.

Enough said

Into August we go – my birth month.  Yep, another spin around the Sun for me…not yet, but soon; I’m on the cusp, first full day of Virgo.  Right now we bask in all things Leo – can you feel the Sun’s energy? (When we are blessed with it, this year!)  Leo is of course ruled by the Sun and the Sun represents the outer you, or your ego.  The colours? Gold, yellow, amber, orange – the colours of Sun-day. Warm, summery, fun.  Many of the greenies that flower in August are yellow.  Cool fact.

So how does your garden grow?  My veggies are kind of at the in between stage right now.  The early, cooler weather crops are not doing well in the heat, although I’m still harvesting lettuces and Swiss Chard, the radish and spinach have called it quits.  I’m going to re-seed end of August for another cool weather crop in the Fall.  Something went bums up with the peas.  The vines grew, developed the pods, but they never ripened, got soft and then the vines died…hmmm still looking into that one.  It couldn’t have been lack of rain!  They aren’t chewed, so I don’t think anything got into them.  Anyone have any ideas?  Maybe I should have harvested them when they were fully formed, but yellow?  They are called green peas for a reason. >: I’ve left them on the trellis to shade the lettuce, but it doesn’t look pretty…

The hot weather veggies:  cucumbers, beans, mellon, squashes and tomato are all coming along, but not nearly ready to harvest.  Lots of tomatoes on the vines, but very green.  I’m harvesting beans and will be harvesting beets and carrots soon.  We haven’t had a lot of hot Sun, although we did get some this week.  I did call this the year of experiment, garden-wise, so I’m waiting things out.  The early crops were good and I will be harvesting garlic when things dry up a bit, next week.

Endings are new beginnings.
Edit the story and continue the book.

I just got back from visiting in the City (Toronto) for a few days.  Down to see my daughter’s new abode and to visit Mr. G (my grandkitty) 🙂  Lots of walking and it was very hot.  Such a different world from the one here at Blue Roof Living.  I always love to visit – a few days is enough to experience the fast pace, the people, the food, do a little shopping, visit a gallery or two, get caught up.  I usually go for a spin through the financial district, my old stomping grounds from what seems like a lifetime ago, and then back I go to my kitties, the greenies, the birds, the fresh air, the dark night sky and the quiet:  home.  I usually take transit down – I’m not a big fan of driving in the City.  When I get back, there’s Pearl (my VW Bug rag top), patiently waiting for me and all is as it should be again.

Always fun to visit, but I’m not sure I could live there anymore.

Breeaaathe – and into a frenzy of spot watering my gardens as soon as I get my stuff in the door.  (Um, I might have bought a few new plants and tucked them in, here and there.)

It hasn’t been a great Summer to get out on the boat – our Civic Holiday long weekend is upon us; fingers crossed for some Sun and Wind.

Nothing too new critter-wise here (other than insects) – Niles is settling in.  Niles is the latest kitty to call the blue roof home. Ralph brought him home and he’s certainly paying for that…Niles is not far out of kittenhood and is in constant play mode.  (If he would stay still long enough, I’d take his picture and let you see him!)  Ralph is entering his golden years.  Playing is ok for a while, then, enough already, time to rest. Niles will push him one step too far…and then WHACK >ouch<…poor Niles – he’ll learn the hard way. Winnie, in her platinum years, just slugs him whenever she sees him, so he steers clear of Winnie – she doesn’t have the patience for a young whipper snipper like him.  Her mode is called “cranky”.

Winter should be interesting.  If Niles wants a bed by the fire, he’d better win over Winnie first…that’s her domain!

My stone wall?  Sigh  That’s not going nearly as quickly as I had anticipated.  It’s either raining or I can’t stand to be down by the trees for the mosquitoes – they are so fierce this year.  Even with my bug stuff on, I get badly bitten. So not happy about that.  There will be a push in the Fall to get some more work done on it.

One nice thing about the plentiful insects this year (I do try to find something good) is the butterflies!  Lots of them and they are so beautiful…I’ve been studying up on the different kinds and I’ve got most of the ones you find in Southern Ontario in my meadow. YAY!

Gee, that may call for a new book! 🙂 I’ve discovered Mourning Cloaks, Eastern Tiger Swallowtails and Red Admirals.  Of course, I always have lots of Monarchs, because I have lots of Milkweed in the meadow.

Look at these beauties on the Sea Holly.  Mourning Cloak on left above and Red Admiral on right.

And lots of Bees, which is always a good thing. The Meadowsweet, left above, is alive with Bees – all different kinds.  Look at that big Bumble Bee in the Hosta flower above right.

So, the flower gardens and the insects have most certainly benefited from all the rain we’ve had this year.

What have I been harvesting?  St. John’s Wort, for one.  This herb has also been called Touch and Heal, among other things. Hypericum Perforatum looks like the photo above on the left.  The photo to the right of that shows my jar of the flowers and leaves packed in oil, harvested about two weeks ago.  The jar in the middle, below them shows another harvest, flowers and leaves in oil that have been sitting for almost one month.  Can you see the colour of the oil?  Red!  Historically, the pigment from the crushed flowers was believed to signify the blood of St. John, who was beheaded.  Also the herb is usually flowering around June 24th, which is St. John’s Day.  You know me, I’m more about the woo woo, but interesting fact all the same!  I will leave the jars sitting in the Sun for two Moon cycles.  The Sun extracts the energy of the plant and harvesting by the Moon extracts her energy…it’s a twofer.

What would I use this red oil for?  I would use it topically for any kind of nerve pain.  Sciatica, Shingles, etc. It is also good for sun burn, but be careful with exposing your skin to the Sun while using it, as it can make you susceptible to burns. I’ll make a salve with the oil, incorporating it with beeswax – less messy to use that way.

Let’s turn to the night sky.  We get to experience some neat stuff this month in the sky.  The full Moon is this coming Monday, the 6th.  Mondays are ruled by the Moon.  We also experience a Lunar Eclipse on the afternoon of the Full Moon.  Two weeks later, on Monday the 21st, the New Moon, we experience a Solar Eclipse at almost the same time in the afternoon.  Very interesting.

Jupiter will be very close to the Moon in the week of the New Moon – especially mid week, in the West. Jupiter has been in the night sky since April and we’ll be losing sight of the King Planet before too much longer.  August is also an excellent time to see Saturn in the West to the left of Jupiter.  Because of the tilt of the planet right now, you can easily see Saturn’s rings with good binoculars or a telescope.  Venus still shines brightly in the East before dawn.  The Milky Way is still very easy to see overhead late evening.  A magic wash of light.

Hmmm, where are we tonight…the Moon is in Capricorn.  Very matter of fact, follow the rules kind of day.

Today’s colour is coral.

Well now, lots of goodies and photos this time around.  A little payback for being away. 🙂 For my Canadian readers, do enjoy your August long weekend, whatever you may be up to.  Our season is so fleeting, especially this year.  Enjoy safely.

Until next time,

-Debra

This and That

piles-and-shelves-of-books

Hey there,

So, the good news?  I’m eating again.  The bad news?  I’m eating again.  Sigh.  At least what went on over Christmas is now gone, thanks to Teeth Guy.  I wouldn’t recommend that particular diet – kind of brutal.  Making up for lost time – chocolate is not safe around me at the moment. 🙂  Still a little sensitive, but it’s amazing what you can do (read: eat) when you put your mind to it!  One more round in early April and buh bye to Teeth Guy.  Probably put in a swimming pool for him this year – or at the least a new torture room for his office. 🙂 Ew.  I’m grateful for my green friends that were used in infusions – kept me going and no infection.

On the note of eating, are you not sick of the commercials for diets and gyms by now?  Every year – those resolutions that people actually admitted to out loud  (see post on Resolutions), the over-crowding at the gyms – must be annoying for those who actually attend all year.  And all those weight loss programs – cha ching!  I’ve spent my fair share – and ta daaa!  I’m still my voluptuous self.  Wash, rinse, repeat.  (Note: Another reason to make your resolutions – if any – with your inside voice.)  Just one more thing I’ve made peace with – yep, I’m of a “certain age”.  You can be healthy and voluptuous at the same time.  January 28th (tomorrow) is National Blueberry Pancake Day!  Nothing special for today, so we’ll just stick with the chocolate.

And still with food…

I had dinner last night with two other ladies and the conversation was fabulous.  A new acquaintance and someone I’m reacquainting with.  Art and travel and gardening – great stuff.  Even touched on a little woo woo (had to get it in).  Still thinking about it today.  One of the things we discussed was Cougar Annie’s Garden located in Hesquiat Harbour in Clayoquot Sound, West Coast, Vancouver Island.  Have you heard of her?  I had forgotten the story until I remembered it!  I think her property has been sold and I regret that I may not get to see it.  What a pioneer – we’re talking one bad ass of a woman.  She passed away in the mid ’80’s but her legend lives on.  She survived in the wilderness in her garden, selling her plants and operating a small general store and post office until into her 90’s.  She was literally carried out.  Outlived three or four husbands (who’s counting?) and gave birth about 11 times.  I’m going to re-read the book, not sure if it’s still in print, but the website voicesfromthesound.com/cougar-annies-garden/in-the-garden.php gives lots of info.  Very fascinating.  She was called Cougar Annie because she used to shoot the cougars (we’re talking the four-legged kind – although …) who ventured into her garden – and she didn’t miss.  There was a bounty on them and she made her living however she could – this was the wild west coast back in the first part of the 20th century.  There was no messing with Annie!  Such an inspiration.

“I step now into the other space;
renewed potential I embrace.”

-Susan Pesznecker

We’re in our last week of January for this year and have you noticed?  The light is lasting a little longer – yay!  The gold finches are actually starting to take on some yellow; soon the starlings are back, hogging the bird seed along with the tree rats.  Today’s Moon is in her third quarter in Virgo (we visited Virgo at the New Year); the colour is topaz.  Browns are for health and home – earthy and grounding.  Before we leave January, know the ruling planet is Saturn.  Saturn is the planet of maturity – the whole “going within” thing that happens this time of year.

Onward into February!

Until next time,

-Debra