The dogs are fussing at 8am, wanting to go outside, so ready or not, I am up. Not awake, mind you, just up. I wander to the kitchen for my morning cappuccino, then wander back to my bed to catch the latest world news on tv: Canada has won more medals at Olympics; dam breaks in the Grand Canyon, trapping campers; hurricane in Caribbean and Florida; Russian and Georgian leaders still in pissing contest; Canadians warned not to eat certain processed meats due to listeria contamination; Taliban threaten Canadians. Nothing new. Switch to Food Network and watch Anna Olson make a Club Sandwich Roll. Looks delish.
My eyes are both functioning now and I think I am awake, so we meander outside to the garden yard. Richard is filling plastic jugs from the water tank so I can water my tomato plants on the garden boat. I water some of the flower pots that look wilted too. The kids are enjoying the cooler temperature and so am I. Right now it is scattered sunshine although rain is threatened for the next few days. I can live with that.
Richard mentions that his hand is still bothering him a bit. The other night, when he was getting the water tank to put on the back of the truck, I heard him yelling at something: "get out of here! Go away, leave me alone, bugger off!" Then I heard him come quickly in the back door. He must have disturbed a hornet's nest - those vicious little insects have nasty stings - and was stung on the hand. He has had some really bad reactions in the past to bee stings and I always keep antihistamine on hand to administer to him.
Back inside, I sit and read my book, waiting for him to leave for work so I can get on with my day. As I am turning on the living room computer, I hear a bird call from out doors, close by. It's not a bird I recognize. Hmmmmm. I walk out the patio door, looking about and listening for it again. There, in the Cherry Tree behind the house, is that...could it be...no, it can't be, I've never seen one here before...a PILEATED WOODPECKER!!! You know, Woody Woodpecker! I sneak in the house for my camera, thinking he will probably be gone when I get back. He is difficult to see up in the branches, where he is eating the few wild cherries that are left. I quickly zoom and snap and hope at least one will turn out. He moves on to pecking at the cherry bark. Then he is gone, off looking for more fruit to eat.
WOW, that made my day, I am so excited. I don't recall ever seeing one in the past. They are beautiful. We have Downy Woodpeckers, Hairy Woodpeckers and Flickers, but never had a Pileated Woodpecker before. One of the photo's isn't too bad, you can at least tell it is a Pileated, down there on the bottom right of the photo. Hope it will hang around for a bit.
Back inside I set to work tidying up my computer "stuff" in the living room. It's amazing how much computer bits and pieces I have and how nice it is to finally get it all organized. I need to get the living room cleaned and ready for Hammond, Megan and Rylan who are driving up this weekend to stay with us. Our upstairs rooms are uninhabitable - long story, don't go there.
Now that the computer area is tidy, I decide to choose some recipes to make for this weekend. Hmmmm...Palmiers, yeah, those are easy; oh and Vanilla Bean Scones, those are delicious and so easy too. Ohhhh, here is one I haven't made before - Raspberry Cheesecake Ice cream, yum. I LOVE ice cream, it is one of my absolute favorite foods. Sounds like it might be fun to make. Um, cream cheese, vanilla sugar, vanilla extract, whipping cream, lemon zest, frozen raspberries, 1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream, and I can mix it up in my Kitchenaid Stand Mixer. Bonus! Oh and I have to make some Brioche dough, in that funny new bread maker. That should do it.
We go outside again to check the plants and flowers. A gaggle of Canada Geese fly over in V-formation, honking their way back to the bird sanctuary across the Canal. The dogs don't even look up being busy in the yard with their own pursuits. Pippi as usual follows me on my desultory journey to the garden boat. We circumnavigate it - me pulling weeds, checking the progress of peas and tomatoes, dead-heading petunias and marigolds; she sniffing this blade of grass, watching that bug, staring into the middle distance. The cool air is pleasant after the heat of the last week, but I would like the warm temperatures to come back.
Deciding to go back inside, I call the crew and head towards the gate. Hmmmm, missing two. I quickly scan the yard and spy Rosie Mouse Killer INSIDE THE FENCE TO THE SMALL PEA PATCH. How the...What the...Grrrrrrr! Marching over I holler at her to get out of my Pea Patch. Rosie looks at me, puzzled, and walks back through an opening in the fence. Good Grief, I thought for sure they couldn't get through those openings. Silly me!
i's lookin' fo mow pepl'
dey undah da groun' der
i heah dem talkin' mom
I hustle them all inside, Rosie still nattering to herself and the others. Time for ice cream. The kids agree and gather round for their spoonful. We enjoy it thoroughly. It's been a good day.
Tomorrow I have a schedule laid out for all that I want to accomplish in the house, and it is a lengthy one. My day is planned to the minute.
Say it with me now...
The best laid plans of mice and women....