Sunday, June 7, 2015
Purple and yellow
Right now, my front yard is a riot of bright yellow and pale purple - Russian sage, Santolina, lavender, Spanish broom, yarrow and chocolate daisies. Dusty June is upon us, and all the drought-tolerant plants are having their moment. Not that we're actually having such a dry June; our wet spring seems to be blending into a fairly wet summer, at least so far. Just this afternoon, we had a fast two-tenths of an inch of rain accompanied by high winds and pea-sized hail. The small Bears and I stood near the windows at the back of the house, watching the rain fall in silvery sheets. They're predicting a good monsoon later this summer and I, for one, am very excited about that.
For now, though, the front yard delights all the senses. The house seems to rise from behind a haze of purplish-blue as the Russian sage gets taller by the day. There are bees everywhere, their sound rising and falling with that of the crickets and cicadas, swarming the sage and the lavender, disappearing into the droopy petals of the Spanish broom. I pick rosemary and thyme for cooking, and clip lavender for a bedside posy. And the biggest news from the front yard: our roadrunner pair is nesting again, this time just above the front gate, in the beams over our courtyard. She sits on the nest and he flies up to her with still-wriggling lizards in his beak. It's the time of the season, y'all.
I got a new camera last week. My eight-year-old Nikon D40 bit the dust. I loved that camera. It was the first DSLR I'd ever used and I learned a lot. My new one, a D7000, is a little intimidating. There are a lot more features. I have much to learn. I took these photos with it, on a day that had the kind of cloudy skies I long for in the summer, in part because they're really good for photography. I'm not fishing for compliments; it was just time to unveil photos from the new camera after a few days of exploration and several panicky moments where I wished it were easy already. But I'm not really in a hurry. I love to play with a camera.
We watched Paddington yesterday. It was so cute! I loved the animation. The kids liked it too. Do you ever wonder if your kids really "get" a movie? I think a lot of the plot went over the GB's head but the LB laughed at all the appropriate points so I think he understood it. Neither has ever been to a movie theater. I know, it probably seems weird. But the Bear and I stopped before we had the LB; it was one of the things we cut out so I could stop working and be a stay-at-home mother. We haven't been to a movie in more than 11 years. I've wondered whether it's harder to enjoy a movie in the theater these days; last time I went, fewer people had cell phones and there was no such thing as social media. I bet there's a lot more distraction in the theater today. And it's too expensive and the food is really bad for you. Hey kids, get off my lawn!
Other things I've been doing: cutting up fabric, hooking my ripple throw, eating avocados, frozen fruit bars and Late July Sea Salt by the Seashore tortilla chips, watching Portlandia on Netflix, getting ready to watch Poldark and Last Tango in Halifax later this summer, planning an early Father's Day dinner for the Bear and his father (we'll be on vacation on the real day), spending my mornings under my trusty pine tree at the pool during swimming lessons, making packing lists for said vacation, trying to break in a new pair of flip-flops, trying to find time for a haircut, trying to keep the house clean now that two grubby short people are in and out all day long.