Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Stuff and Nonsense...

I've been more or less off the grid this past week.  I've had some issues to tackle, some work to finish, and everything was made more difficult under the debilitating weight of humidity and mind-boggling heat.

Last night, as the steamy furnace heat, building inexorably hour by hour during the day, reached unbearable, I heard the low roll of thunder off in the distance.  I went outside to see if it looked like rain might be coming, or if the thunder was just a tease, generated by the heat.  It was so miserably humid, just standing at the deck rail--doing nothing but standing there--I was sweating.  When all I saw across the Valley was heat lightning, and mean-looking black clouds, I went back inside and flopped down on the floor with the dogs.  Somehow it seemed cooler down there.  As the thunder rumbled and growled, the dogs panted and whined, I read my book.  It wasn't until well after dark that I realized I wasn't sticky anymore...and the dogs were asleep, breathing soft and quiet.  I stood at the front door and took my first cool breath of air in nearly a week.  The fever had broken.

Today, it's a bit muggy and close, but also cloudy with a tiny breeze.  And though this week has been nothing like the deep sultry heat of Miami in August, or the oppressive burn of Chicago in July, I've learned that April--at least this April--in southern Oregon came with its own sweltering intensity.


This morning I took the dogs to the County Park, about 20 minutes outside town, mainly because the park doesn't allow dogs from May 15 - Sept 15, and that leaves me just a few more weeks.  It's really a shame they have this rule because I rarely see other dogs out there in the first place, and during the hot Summer months it's a cooler place to go, with all the trees, than staying in town.  The other reason I wanted to go out that way this morning is Kruse's Farm Market opened last week and I wanted to look at their flowers and plants.

Kruse's is a long-time, family-owned operation down in the Valley.  They have many acres, grow all their own produce, and provide most of the town and surrounding area with flowers and fresh vegetables.  It's an eagerly awaited event in the Spring when Kruse's opens for the season.

We had a good walk, then I drove to the Farm and had a great time wandering in their four giant greenhouses, looking at plants and veggies. 

I got some zucchini sprouts that I'm going to grow down the slope this year instead of the pumpkins--though those pumpkins were so cool, I was tempted to do it again.

(Photo from last Fall)

Kruse's also has a bakery/gift shop.  They make all their own pies, dried fruits, honey, soup mixes...lots of good stuff.  I was very tempted to buy a pie but I resisted.  I'm only one person after all and I truly don't need to eat an entire pie by myself.  Though I could.  And I wanted to. 

I did however buy this.  Know what's in that bag?

When I was a kid, and my mother would make a pie, she would dust the leftover scraps of crust with cinnamon and sugar, bake them, then let me and the three sibs devour those wonderful, crispy treats.  I loved those misshapen, delicious bites of heaven almost more than her pies.  (Same with pizza crust but that's another story).

So.  Last year I'm in the bakery, wandering around, buying some stuff and OMG is that what I think it is?  Yes.  A bag of cinnamon/sugar bits from their leftover pie crusts.  And even better than bringing back a childhood memory, they taste exactly the same as my mom's.  How cool is that?

Besides the bag of yummy and the zucchini, I also bought some flowers today.  I have a plan to hang a couple of baskets off my back deck to cover this gaping hole underneath.  No one seems to notice, or mind this, though to me, it's just weird.  I mean, really.  You can see all the way under the deck, and no, I don't want to put in that lattice stuff.  My plan is to hang baskets under the deck which should cover some of the open space.  Wait.  That isn't very clear.  I don't mean I'm hanging them under the deck, more along the outer frame--

Oh here, just let me show you...

See what I mean?  The Black Hole of Calcutta.  If I hang the baskets from that 4 x 6 outer beam, they should fill out over the Summer, cascade down, and help to cover that space.  In theory.  I'm going to try it, in any case.  I bought trailing flowers and have two large hanging basket pots.  The trick will be to screw the hangers into the pressure-treated wood (hard as rock), then lift the baskets to the hooks.  Uh huh.

(Remember a few weeks ago when I mentioned that Ozzy was sick in the night and I had to crawl under the deck to find him?   This is that place.   He was way under there, in the back part.  Imagine this in the pitch dark, mud and dirt, in pajamas. Ah, the good times.)


I got two more postcards this week.  That makes nine, so far.  It's really fun to open the mail box and find a card, and a message, from someone across the world.  So far I have received cards from Ireland, the Netherlands (2), Belarus, Latvia, the Czech Republic, Germany, New Zealand and British Columbia.  I'm reminded however that I have to work on making my own postcards, now that I have the new printer.


Well, it's been nice to catch up, but I have to go.  I need to find the drill, screw the bolts into the beam, plant and hang the baskets, caulk around the bathtub, tighten the faucets, put the second coat of varnish on the front door threshold, consider building a raised bed on the slope for the zucchini, work on the next chapter in the Imaginary Tale story, make some postcards...

I need a nap.


  1. I cannot imagine your heat as I am wrapped in a sweater with slippers on against the chill in the house. Your description of such heat, however, warmed my soul a bit. :)

    I think the hanging plant idea is brilliant.

    I just received a lovely postcard from East Ukraine yesterday--gorgeous stamps! Happy postcrossing!

    1. This morning the boys and I got caught in a torrential downpour with freezing winds whilst out walking. It felt so good to actually be cold, though I could have done without the drenching.

      Managed to get both baskets hung yesterday, though right now they look slightly ridiculous as the plants are small. Still, this idea might just work.

      I got a card from Russia this cool. (Have you noticed how beautiful everyone's handwriting is in that part of the world?)