Bits & pieces of my crazy world…

Posts Tagged ‘annuals’

This sucks, but…

Posted by MeTymeMN on May 26, 2008

I am not so shallow or self-absorbed that I don’t realize how lucky we were…keep that in mind as you read through this.

I was in my truck pulling my camper about 7 years ago in the midst of straight-line winds; I had never been so scared.  Though my truck was being blasted by hail as I’m trying to find cover somewhere on the road, it was all the trees falling in front of me on the streets that truly terrified me.  By the time I made it to my destination (which was a hitch and welding shop) two of the workers came running out of the building yelling “tornado” and almost pulled me out of the truck and into their shop…but not before I saw the tree fly OVER the building.  When I got home, two bedroom windows had blown IN and all of the walls were now decorated in floor-to-ceiling wet leaves, the glass patio furniture had exploded on impact with my deck doors, and a few other things, but at least I didn’t have a tree in my kitchen like my neighbors.  Ever since that day, I get REALLY uptight when there’s even a hint of severe weather.  The kids roll their eyes and say I’m over-reacting when the sirens go off and I make them go downstairs; hubby runs outside as soon as the sirens start going off so he can see what’s going on.  Is that a GUY thing???

We’d been watching the weather and news most of the day yesterday because we knew there was a chance of severe weather in our area.  At about 4:00 we were looking at ugly radar and tornado warnings abou 40 miles northwest of us…smack dab over my ex-husband’s town…where my 15 year-old was.  I called out there and he said they were down in the basement and getting about golf ball size hail at that time.  Radar was showing the storm moving in a northeastern direction, so it didn’t look like we’d get hit with the severe stuff.  Around 4:30 it started moving directly east.  Around 5:00 I told my 17 year-old that I would drive him to work (instead of him taking my truck) because I didn’t want my truck sitting in a parking lot if there was a chance it would get hailed on.  At 5:15 I told him I was driving him to work a half hour EARLY because it was the ‘calm before the storm;’ so we left.  At 5:25 I pulled back into our garage, closed the garage door and stepped into the house, and that’s when the hail hit.  I don’t even remember seeing rain, I just remember seeing hail – probably because that’s all I could hear.  My husband was next door (neighbor had just graduated from his MBA program and was having a party) already, so I rounded up the cats and ran downstairs.  Cats lasted about 10 seconds and ran back UPstairs again – the hail hitting everything was so much louder downstairs than it was on the main level!  I could hear glass shattering as I was running down the stairs, but I couldn’t tell where it was coming from.  It lasted about 5 minutes though it felt like at least an hour.   We had hail that ranged from pea size to golf ball size to even baseball size.  The glass shattering I heard was all the poor cars of our neighbor’s guests – there were 3 or 4 that had windows completely smashed out, others with holes in their windows and some just peppered with dents.  We were having people take turns pulling up in our driveway where we vacuumed out the glass and put plastic over the openings where the windows used to be.  Ironically we had just picked up a couple rolls of duct tape and had a couple huge rolls of plastic and it worked great – we got word from our neighbors this morning that they all made it home with the plastic still in tact.  So I wasn’t really focusing on taking pictures of the car damage – and kept saying thank you to God that I got my truck in the garage before this hit – so much as the damage sustained to our own property.  They say that pictures speak a thousand words, but not necessarily pictures that are taken by a lame photographer (me).  These really don’t do justice to the the full scope and detail of the damage, but it’ll give you an idea:


If I had to walk it in the rain or snow, 2 miles would seem like an extremely long distance, but in this case 2 miles feels almost like our back yard…it was 2 miles north of us that the tornado hit, completely destroying 50 homes and severely damaging 100 more.  But by far the saddest aspect is the 2 year-old who was blown out of the house and landed in a pond in the backyard.  So far that’s the only fatality that has been confirmed.  I guess he had a 6 year-old sibling who was blown out of the house with him; her heart stopped but they got it restarted in the ambulance.  She and both of her parents are in the hospital.  I just couldn’t even imagine.  As I said in the very beginning, compared to what happened right up the road, we are so very lucky that our damage was only cosmetic and for the most part only superficially.  It’s a pain in the butt now to deal with, but we have our HOME intact and we have our LIVES intact.  Every time I start to feel even a little sorry for myself because of something going on in my life, there always seems to be something else that puts it all in perspective.

All day Saturday (I still can barely stand on my stiff little legs) was spent laying down 4 yards of new mulch all over our property, setting up and planting all of our annuals as well as hubby’s herb garden, and his pride and joy (hopefully) for this season – the Topsy Turvey Tomato planters!  We certainly have our fingers crossed, and take it as a very good omen that they survived the storm.  We love love love Bruschetta, and it’s never as good as it is with freshly picked tomatoes!

The hostas didn’t fair too well, but although I never wish harm to any of our perennials, I’m not a huge fan of the hostas we have (planted by the original owners, all the same size, shape, color, etc.) so am looking forward to mixing things up a little bit with a wider variety. 


The hanging baskets are a little more painful because I do them all from scratch, and we spent the majority of our time at the nursery on Saturday trying to decide on what to put in the baskets this year.  Hubby doesn’t believe they’re dead, just sad; so I’ll baby them over the next week or so and hope for the best.




A tiny little miracle…


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Just some Hump Day babbling…

Posted by MeTymeMN on May 14, 2008

The sun has been out all day today…that’s a first for a little while now.  It’s a good thing.  I definitely need the sun; it definitely affects my mood.  I spent a good portion of the afternoon here, working on my lace shawl.  I still love it – not just this shawl but lace in general.  If it wasn’t for the constant up and down to chase a cat who’d snuck down the stairs and out into the yard (and all 3 of them tried it at least once), it would have been a very peaceful, lazy yet productive afternoon.  But I’m certainly not complaining – it was still great time spent outdoors in the sun and warmth! 

 Speaking of sun and warmth, Lazareth (that’s what I named my Fern Leaf Peony) has been thriving with all of the rain and sparatic sun.  Can you see the actual BLOOMS he’s sprouting now?!  You’ll most likely need to click on the picture to enlarge it a little to actually see them. 

I don’t know if any of you see this, but I really do believe that spring growth is slow to come this year; maybe it’s just a mid-west thing.  Even the annuals selection in the nurseries are pretty sparse right now – you can get geraniums, pansies, impatiens, begonias; the pretty basic standard stuff.  But the snapdragons, salvia, even the zinnias aren’t out yet (at least not in my neck of the woods), and ‘we’ were just warned that it’s still too cold at night to plant the tomatoes and to wait until at least after the 15th.  The most poignant indicator, though, is that there still haven’t been any great deals advertised yet.  Sure there are sales, but nothing terribly spectacular.  Probably because the choices are still so limited.  Being born without the patience gene, it’s tough for me not to just get out there are start filling all my pots and hanging baskets (which I typically make myself vs. buy pre-arranged).  So I compromised and just went ahead and bought one so I can look at something right now.  Yep – made sure it was a damn big one!  Unfortunately, the ‘shepherd hook’ I bought just about bent in half when I hung this hummer on there, so I had to move it to the back – on the big sturdy hook – which messes everything up because it’s a sun-loving arrangement and everything in the back is either predominantly for shade or a shade/sun mix.  So I’ll need to think about this one some more. 

“Of course they’re mocking us…they know the screen’s there!”

The finches are around in droves now – it’s great!  Not only are they all so beautiful and colorful, but they provide hours of entertainment for the “girls”…which then provides entertainment for the humans!  There have been a few times where we thought the cats were going to go right through the screen in order to play with them.  The two in the picture are the extremely lazy ones – you pretty much have to bring everything directly to them in order to engage them in play!  And they’re the two that need the exercise – just look at Zoey’s butt!  Of course I really can’t talk…but that’s why I don’t put my butt in pictures and then on the internet. 🙂

This was at 6:30 this morning, apparently “resting” before heading to school.  Madison’s not a lap cat at all, and only rarely with either of the kids…so we like to capture these adorable moments when we can!

Graduation announcements are being printed and hopefully we’ll get them addressed and in the mail by Monday.  I had thought about doing labels, but I think the graduate here should address them by hand; make it a little more personal.  Tomorrow we’re off to have him take a college entry/placement assessment, and then try to put together a resume – there is a summer job opening at his father’s place of work:  16 hours a week doing image scanning, copying, collating, etc., $11-13/hour (almost twice what he’s making now and about 4 times as many hours in a week), and he can pretty much define how those 16 hours play out (2 8-hour days, 4 4-hour days, etc.).  Hell, *I* thought about doing it!  I can knit while I’m watching the copier spit out.

8:37pm and still much to do tonight.  Have a great week everyone!

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