Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Kansas Today: Ugh.

Well, the wind was pretty awful today, starting out at 25 mph, and heading on up to 45 mph gusts.  Ours was the type of late afternoon that leaves one looking for sturdy shelter.  But before we could do that, we had tasks hand: animals to deal with, a couple of cars to park in the barn, (more on that), move plants indoors (more on that), and a general battening down of the hatches.  Really.

It was warm today and is warm this evening.  There is a blizzard barreling down the interstate today, from west-to-east, leaving a large section of Kansas closed off to major thoroughfare.  A sudden drop in our temperatures (70º to 35º?) is a recipe for hail.  (Hence, the barn-cleaning)

I have a number of lavender plants that I have propagated over the winter.  I set them out two weeks ago, to get acclimated to springtime in Kansas.  Tonight I will bring them back in to the house for the remainder of the week, since the forecast calls for lows into the 20s.  I should have known.

Down south in the state, firefighters are working on an uncontrolled fire, which has burned through 70,000 acres so far.  Closer to home, there is a fire some 20-30 miles from us, but let me tell you: the smoke is right here, right now, and I am most uncomfortable, even in the house.  I would like to turn on the AC to see if that might help, but...with a potential blizzard only hours away, would this be prudent?

Oh - and the Kansas legislature is making national news every week, and nearly every day.  So proud of the folks in Topeka.  And, no, I did not vote for those knuckleheads, any of them.

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

March. It's My Birthday, Too.

Such an interesting week.  Over the weekend we, that Spouse o' Mine and I, traveled to Oklahoma to visit my parents.  It was my birthday.  I am fifty-six.  Mom & Dad are 87-ish.  Also traveling to Oklahoma were Denver daughter Gillian and her boyfriend.  Twenty-somethings.

Since it was my birthday, plus a niece-in-law's birthday, plus a sister-to a sister-in-law's birthday (I know: Okies make it confusing.), I decided to invite EVERYONE over to Mom & Dad's Saturday night for dinner and mayhem.  Not everyone could make it-some people were skiing in Colorado and mountain climbing the Adirondacks, and one was at a bass tournament at a Grand Lake.  But we did enjoy four generations of laughter and conversations, sprinkled with twirls and instantaneous make-believe scenarios by the six-years-and-under.  One moment I was a cat, then a bunny.  Then I found myself talking to adult kin about mountain climbing this summer, and then, politics.  Oops!  Then I became a picnicker, sitting on the floor of Mom's kitchen, encouraging the six-and-unders to enjoy another helping of cake and ice cream.  Such a fun evening.

One morning last week, I was barely awake, and eyes not even open, and I told that Spouse o' Mine, "I had a dream that Heylin (Heylin {deceased}, was my great aunt, the oldest of fourteen kids), was sitting across the dinner table from me, and I thought to myself, 'I should let her know who I am ', as in : I am a Van Valkenburgh."  That Spouse o' Mine mumbled something, because his eyes, much less his brain were not yet opened.  But the dream held my interest, because I was never close to Heylin, at all, although I respected her and the rest of the Van Valkenburgh elders.

Well!  Not two hours after that dream narration, I received a Facebook message from a cousin, Kathy.  Kathy, granddaughter of Heylin.  Kathy & I knew each other in high school and attended the same university.  And that's where our lives parted. Until last week.  Her Facebook message said, "We need to get together for lunch."

Wowza.  How does that work?  I dream about a deceased someone, and her granddaughter FB's me two hours later to have lunch?  I LOVE how life works. There is so much we simply do not know and are not aware of.  Cosmic energy. Ha ha ha !  I love it. So, Kathy & I are off to lunch in Kansas City tomorrow morning.

While I was gallivanting around DuPont Circle two weeks ago, I received an email from Victor in Sequim, Washington.  He sells lavender.  He said he was shipping my lavender order from last October.  I replied Thank You, and got to pondering what was my next step in this lavender biz...

Well!  One week and 288 lavender plants later, let me tell you, I have a Brickhouse full of lavender plants ready to put in the ground in a few weeks/months.  (I ordered "plugs", which are just that: dinky stems with roots attached.  From there, they {hopefully} mature into viable plants to sink into the earth when the earth hits a certain temperature, after frost.)

My Brickhouse:

And that is what my "birthday week" has been.  Fun, fanciful, dreamy, lavender-laden, and tonight? Some much-needed, gentle rain.  With our windows wide-open.  Such a treat...
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