Lots of rain equals

…lots of time for the cats. And also: opportunity for the crickets to escape the basement and become lots of toys for the cats. Altogether now: ick!

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I am glad that we’ve had more than 2 days without rain. I’ve enjoyed the opportunity to take walks without an umbrella or raincoat.

In book news, I’ve found a wonderful book on trees called Seeing Trees by Nancy Ross Hugo, with positively luminous closeup photographs by Robert Llewellyn of bark, leaves, fruit, acorns. Everything that’s inaccessible while you walk thru a city park with protective barriers around the trunks.

In other news, Inktober is in full swing, so I’m tweeting different pics. Not sure if I’m keeping Flickr in the sidebar, due to changes of service, so I haven’t been putting any images there. Let me know in the comments if I should, while I ponder other photo sharing services that will work with Ravelry, etc.

Changes

We’ve been humming David Bowie around here (a favorite) because of changes. We’ve finished some good home updating, although not the longed for new bathroom (someday). It’s all external maintenance, but a useful change. Meanwhile…

sketch of sunset over beach houses

Sketch of sunset behind beach houses, moon reflected in waves.

An unwelcome visitor (Florence) stopped near neighbors to the south, so I watched and hoped for the storm to dissipate before it made landfall. We’re both grateful not to be out on the Outer Banks on vacation.  But there were lots of friends and family inland from the projected path.

And… with the rains from Florence (and all summer), the house logically needs more maintenance prior to the longed for modernization indoors.

So, change, uncertainty… feeling uprooted… it feel odd to cheerfully chirp about updates to an older home. But it still needs to be done, if we’re not going to let buildings rot into the ground.

I’ll leave you with a few photos from southern North Carolina, pre-Florence.

 

 

 

Spending time

NCseashoreI’ve spent all my vacation this month, and now I’m looking at work schedules, as well as some training. But I am so glad I took time to spend with family and friends.

1 week “invested”, and here are my rewards:

  • Walking the shoreline, enjoying low tech days
  • Hunting for fossils (found: ancestors of the sand dollar)
  • Pausing to watch pelicans drift across the sky in lazy Vs

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  • Laughing while playing board games
  • Watching thunderstorms across the water
  • Sketching the beach from the comfort of a screened porch
  • Waking up before sunrise for a walk on the beach at low tide
  • Visiting friends and family on our way home

The shoreline of North Carolina was a beautiful place to visit. Returning home, our yard seemed newly beautiful too, with lots of monarch butterflies migrating through. Hope your summer break was grand.

 

 

Holidays where the air is clear

Kites at Harkness Memorial State ParkA while ago, I visited New England, staying with friends where the air is clear. It was hot and a bit humid during the day, but it would settle into cool temperatures by 1 AM, which is clearly a huge benefit of living up north, in the hills. It was one of those long weekend holidays, with somwhat stressy driving on either side of solid days of beautiful weather and really good seafood.

There was time for sketching, late night reading (my friends have an enviable library of mysteries of the “cosy” sort), and drowsy attempts to identify which frogs I heard through the open windows. There were trips to parks, where I sketched in the shade.

I goggled at the giant frogs of Willimantic (on the bridge… very large, with shiny gold eyes). Go to this article to read more about it: Bridge Ornaments. A friend and I visited a museum up there, that was housed in a section of the old American Thread Company (ATCO). I’ll possibly post pictures from that part of the trip in my Flickr (in the sidebar).

I regret nothing… not even coasting home at 2 AM to cats who had lost all hope that even the house sitter would return. [They were thrilled by their people arriving at a weird hour, and then they gave me the stink eye for the next 2 days.] I do regret leaving the cool weather and coming back, but I did have work to do and cats to feed.

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Enjoying summer while we may

IMG_4538 beachThe weather has been oddly monsoon-like. Someone told me there’s a layer of wet air (like a river) being pulled up the coast. So, while the UK discovers forgotten landmarks due to the heat crisping all the verdant green, we have rain everywhere, as well as mosquitoes and air too humid for jam to set. If we have your weather, Columbia, we’re sorry, and we’d send it back to you if we knew how.

Before this week+ of wet weather, there was a brief jaunt out to the shore, and a bit of sitting on the beach. We saw a Fowler’s Toad (I think) unbury itself from the sand near the dunes, and then bury himself again. Guess he didn’t want to sit near us.

Between storms

The moon peeks out, like a golden imp,

framed by milkhaze clouds in the dark sky.

Storms roll through, all exclamation marks and gouts of rain.

People dash for doorsteps, pelting through puddles,

struggling with umbrellas, peering from beneath rainhoods.

The moon peeks out after everything is quiet. Birds chirp about wet feet.

Something creaks in the darkness. Now is the between. (C) 2018, RJ N

Cats and photography

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His Most Serene Fluffybutt enjoying the sun porch

No videos to show here. I haven’t quite worked out what platform I’d want the videos to be on…. But I have videos and photos of horse jumping contests, sheepdog contests, races I’ve attended, and video after video of my cats (kittenhood to old age). Does anyone else do it too?

I spent a few minutes hunting up videos from when Malkin was still with us, and when he and Leia were best buddies. Those were amazing days for both cats: Leia would lie near him and hope he would wash her ears. I only got video once. But it’s proof that before Malkin got sick, he was a sweet, thoughtful cat.

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I think if he hadn’t been so calm and placid, we wouldn’t have Leia now, because she never would have calmed down enough to be pet (or be A pet). Our rescue princess is 15 years old…. and I feel we’ve all reached an amazing milestone.


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