Sidewalks, rain, and locust leaves

I took the photo because it intrigued me. Carolyn saw it and wondered what the story line is for it. I thought about it and here it is.

I really found it interesting that the wind and rain had decided to take the time to decorate the sidewalks. Even more interesting that the sidewalks were striped with a strip of locust leaves and then with water.

It is an announcement.

October, at least in terms of what I think an October is, has arrived.

This morning, when we went out, I felt the chill, a chill that makes me think of a fire in the hearth. That feeling of just enough cold to make one want to don that sweater, preferably wool, and to sit near a slowly burning fire in the fireplace with a good book, getting up periodically to warm my hands.

October, yes, has finally arrived.

I am not sure if it is going to stay, I got the distinct impression that the weather is going to change mid-week and that it will get warm again. Meanwhile, we are getting a taste of autumn.

Today feels like Halloween, Halloween because it usually is blustery with wind and at least a small amount of rain. I always feel bad for the kids as they are trick or treating and that it just isn’t that comfortable, weather-wise. You go outside thinking that you are dressed for the occasion, only to find that you still are chilled, you just aren’t into the routine of dressing warmly enough for the weather that is.

I am thinking that by the time we finally accept the fact that the weather is that of October, that it will in fact be November.

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Soap Bits and Organic Thoughts

On the Dr. Squatch ‘soap saving’ teak rack are two of my favorite soaps that have ‘melted’ together: Bay Rum is sandwiched by Pine Tar soap.

As we get older, our skin is more and more sensitive and we need to be more careful and so are our bodies, in general.

That is one of the reasons that I was happy to find Dr. Squatch, a more reasonable way to keep clean. With our granchildcare came a more organic approach to life. We don’t want them to have to submit to foods and things that are full of hormones and antibiotics, nor do we want harsh chemicals touching their skin. Wipes and things have radically changed and we are more aware of the damaging effects of chemicals.

We kind of made fun of my mom who always said that ‘chemicals’ were a serious issue. We pretty much believed her, but she went a bit overboard, or so it seemed. She did feel that my father’s untimely death at the age of forty was hastened by his working with harsh chemicals at Eastman Kodak as a photofinisher in Cleveland. He was about to be promoted to a different position when malignant melanoma came on the scene and pushed him toward the afterlife.

Now we are more careful about milk, dairy products, and pretty much everything we eat. It is more for the little ones than even for us but I believe that we all benefit. High fructose corn syrup is another avoidance. If we have to have a sweetener, we would prefer cane sugar. Luckily, we make many things from scratch so we have more control over these issues.

Along with all of these things and using better soaps, I have noticed that I waste less soap. When my Dr. Squatch square soap is getting smaller, it is easy to just put it on top of a new bar of Dr. Squatch. In no time, usually by the next day, the small remnant has firmly attached to the new bar and I don’t end up wasting. That is an old trick I learned from my depression-raised mother. Unfortunately, for the soft, not highly milled American soaps, it doesn’t always work that well. For Dr. Squatch, it does. I even remember, when speaking of soap, that my mom took remnants and put them in an old nylon stocking, kept it by the laundry tub, and used it as a method of washing things, the small bits making soap from within the stocking.

“Waste not, want not” and “You are what you eat” are two great proverbs.

Posted in Childcare, Grandchildcare, Grandkids, Life in general, Organic, Soap, Thoughts and philosophy | Leave a comment

Rain after a marathon afternoon of yard work

I will say that I was exhausted after my profitable day.

I started out with my pond plan and put in the pond warmers, removed the filter and pump, and subsequently cleaned everything I took out. I left the aerator in and plan to leave it working for the time being as the pond is less than completely clear from the heavy rains.

In my cleaning, I rescued two baby Japanese Trapdoor Snails that are going to friends of ours, who have a pond, and wanted to know if I had any extra snails.

The promised heavy rains did come and worked through the night, even kept me from walking Stewie. We started walking in the rain and the lightning siren went off. We returned home. I will have to walk him later.

After the pond, I planted about seventy daffodils and narcissus. I also planted some crocus as well. I thought that planting them just before a rain was providential and that worked out well.

I put the plain clear, LED Christmas lights on the bushes and made sure to avoid the poison ivy, even if it is dead.

I brought the wood bench that was back by the pond to the garage area, getting ready to story everything.

The bad part is that in doing all of this, I tore up my garage organization a bit. I cannot put it back until I have put the completely dry pond equipment in their containers. Luckily, that does not depend on the weather so much as it is under cover.

My last act, besides cleaning up, was to remove the kayak rack from MK’s car. Once again, my good kayaking intentions were not held to, but I keep on hoping for next year. I managed to get the rack off way more easily than expected, which was a gift of sorts. I had debated doing it, given that it was perhaps above and beyond what I should have done.

It is Saturday. We are having two girls and their dog over for a sleepover. I am glad that I did the work I did so I can relax before they come over.

Posted in Grandchildcare, Grandkids, Household and yard tasks, Life in general, Pond and koi, Thoughts and philosophy | Leave a comment

My outdoor list of things to do

I need to profit from the good weather.

I have things I need to do outside and I would like to do them before the weather gets cold and to the point that I abhor doing them.

The pond is covered but not winterized. The pump and filter are in and it would behoove me to get them removed and get the pond hole heaters in place. Better that than lose the beautiful fish that I have.

I bought bulbs and I need to plant those as well.

The things I need to put away and/or winterize that are secondary on my list of things to do are far easier to accomplish. I have rain barrels that need to be turned over, hoses that need to be rolled up and put in the garage, and furniture that needs to be put into the garage and covered up.

The mums that we bought to decorate for the fall are going to be planted with the hope that they might survive the winter. Some do and some don’t and I think that it depends on where I planted them. The ones that I plant near the house tend to do better, it must be the warmth of the house or the protection it provides.

I also thought that I might even get crazy enough to put the Christmas lights up as they are just lights that will not be connected until the season begins, but having them set to go might be a good idea.

Procrastinating can happen and, in fact, my even writing about it is procrastinating, lol.

Okay, I have been to the gym, I need some food as sustenance, and then I am off to the yard!

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Cold and rainy and finally October!

I listened to the rain during the night. It was steady and to the point that we have water on the back sidewalk.

The other day, while I was in the car, it went from 73 to 63 degrees within a twenty-minute period.

This morning, the temps showed that it was under 60 degrees.

Stewie and I dealt with drizzle and it felt like October.

I really have to start thinking seriously about my transitional activities as we clear out the garden and patio so that our furniture is protected.

I have most of the plants in, the only one remaining is the passionflower that I need to disengage from the playhouse pergola, cut down, and clean and prepare it for its indoor stay.

The pond needs to have the filter removed and cleaned and the pump as well. The aerator needs to be taken out.

Because of the major rain, the pond is high and the koi are swimming where they never swim. The clarity is not great, as it never is after a heavy rain. That should change momentarily.

I think I am going to give up on my quest to capture the skunk. He has been non-existent, which is fine with me, and I have a solar light established in the back to come on when there is activity, apparently skunks don’t like that.

The kayak carrier, on MK’s car roof, has to come off. I had good intentions but used it only once. Oh well…

Luckily, I have help with my leaves; the lawn guys will do that and cut down the plants that need cutting.

Whether we like it or not, the reality of the coming winter is present and we need to act accordingly.

Posted in Life in general, Meteorology, Thoughts and philosophy | Leave a comment