Saturday, July 11, 2009

Miscellany, With Pictures

Peony season is almost over now.
Peony Peonies
For a period, when I was young, I didn't like peonies. I thought they were too showy and old fashioned, plus they always had ants on them. Now I love them for being showy and old fashioned, and just put up with the ants. Funny how preferences change over time, isn't it? I think it was a house with a border of peonies all around the yard that changed my mind... I happened to see it when the peonies were at their best, and have loved them ever since. Recently I've been enjoying the lovely scent that peonies have. I've noticed it more with the ones along the busy street where I walk to catch the bus, than with the ones in my mom's and neighbour's yard. The above peonies are in the neighbour's yard, where it border's my mom's yard. (They're the ones I edged earlier this year.)

This peony is in my mom's yard:
I bought it out in BC, and managed to get it back to Winnipeg alive. The centre petals were supposed to be yellow. My mom's yard also has old fashioned peonies, in addition to this fancy-pants hybrid I planted for her.

Mom grows amazing oriental poppies:
I think it has to do with the sun and compost. I tried to grow a poppy once, back when we were living in a townhouse... it was scraggly, leggy, and managed to have it's one bloom through a knothole in a tall fence between our house and the neighbour. I gave up on poppies after that. I think I'd like to try my hand again... I love the Icelandic poppies I saw in various gardens elsewhere. Perhaps I'll have better luck this time.

Green Mosquito
Have you ever seen a green mosquito? I killed this sucker (well, not a sucker... he was male) in my apartment last week. I found the colour so bizarre that I took a photo (several, actually, and all bad).

How about a grey ladybug?
Grey Ladybug
This is the second one I've seen now.

I love snapdragons. I once showed my grandpa why snapdragons had that name. That was a fun time I had with him. :) (He's long since passed away.)

I love dictionaries... especially if they're big and illustrated.
Its even better if they're old. :)

My latest pair of crochet socks:
Crochet Socks
These are for Bob. I thought there'd be enough in the ball, since it claimed 410 meters, but I was short and had to buy something to lengthen the legs. I felt buying another 100 gm ball was silly, and so tried for a coordinating yarn. The coordinating yarn photographs rather differently than it looks in real life. It's one of those mysterious yarns that look quite a bit different depending on the light. Isn't it strange how some yarns do that, and others don't?

This is the odd shop across the street from my apartment:
Odd Shop
When I was a kid, it was a candy store. (Okay, it was probably a convenience store, but I was only interested in the candy.) This store and another one closed a long time ago. The other one was converted into a residential apartment, but this one has remained commercial... and now sells satellite dishes and similar things. It's run by an old Chinese gentleman. I find it entertaining watching him from my window as he tries out different sidewalk displays to attract customers. The night before I took this photo, we had crazy rainstorms. The cardboard part of his display didn't survive... I found the melting boxes funny, which is why I took the photo. I have no explanation for the plastic snowman with the umbrella.

Recently our local post office closed, and now we need to go a couple miles to get our packages. (Actually, the real post office in the beautiful old building closed many years ago, in favour of a tacky postal outlet in a 7-11. The reason was supposedly so we'd get longer hours. This spring the hours in the 7-11 post office cut back it's hours, and now it's gone altogether.)
Although it's nice not to have to travel long distances to get my mail, I rather wish my postman would be a bit more discriminating as to what and how he crams things in my mailbox.

In other news, I apparently now have benefits with my job. (That's what arrived in the big, battered envelope.) I need to go through the package more carefully to see what sort of pay-cut these benefits result in. The pension appears to be optional this year, but mandatory next year.

One thing that didn't arrive in my mailbox was the DVD that an online survey person asked me to watch on Sunday. (I try to be nice to online survey people. From the sounds of things, it was a new sitcom being considered. I was supposed to watch it Sunday, and then answer some questions about it Monday.) I wonder if they decided not to send it, or if Canada Post decided to sit on it for a while longer?

I miss USPS.

I found a friend for Bartholomew today.
Bartholomew and The Dog
I think the dog might be a Hagen-Renaker figurine. (Those are the ones that come glued to the paper squares... I remember loving them as a kid, and saved up my dollars to buy one once. I had forgotten the name, and had to google for a bit to find it.) I saw him when I popped in to Sally Ann to see if they had anything interesting. They're having a 60% off sale for red tag items... the dog had a blue tag, but was only $1.50, and I have a bit of spending money again now that I'm back to tutoring. I picked up some pretty buttons too. I haven't named the dog yet, but he's very fond of Bartholomew already. (Bartholomew seems to like him in return, even though he's very focussed on his sock.)

Wednesday I also splurged on a new pair of gardening gloves (pig skin!) and a dandelion weeding tool. The gloves are lovely and soft... although I discovered after I got home that they were miss-sewed, and so have a rather large hole in them. It happens to be on the back of the left hand, though, so it's not a big deal. (Home Depot is a pain to get to by bus, and they were by far the softest pair there for some reason, so I don't plan on taking them back.)

Recently I've been reading "I Captured The Castle" by Dodie Smith. I was really enjoying it until the main character sunk into depression... and since I tend to be strongly affected by how the main character feels, I was rather distraught. However, she (and I) are coming out of it now. :) I'm getting close to the end... I sure hope it ends well!

While at the library, I also borrowed "Cold Comfort Farm" by Stella Gibbons, as well as the sequel, "Conference at Cold Comfort Farm".

Harper's making an ass of himself again, this time on the international stage. *sigh* Can't he stop picking fights with his rivals long enough to accomplish something useful? I hope we get someone better before he completely tramples Canada's good name.

My... this post has taken me two hours to write! I'm sure I forgot something I was planning on writing, but it's time for bed. Good night!


mrsfife said...

Maybe he had some leaf juice to drink, the mosquito. We've got stripy ones. And I was charmed by my first sight of a pink dragonfly.

Kate said...

With all your skills can't you come up with some kind of patch for your glove? A crocheted flower or something? LOL

Kate the crocheter
PS I finally tried after-heel socks and now that is the only kind I make! You encouraged me to try them a year or so ago just to jog your memory. Oh and if you are a member of Crochetville I am known as Sockmad there.

noricum said...

Oooo... a *pink* dragonfly? Neat!

Kate: I've thought about sewing it up, but leather is such a pain to sew through. :P Congrats on the socks! :) I am a member at Crochetville, but I haven't visited for ages... there's just too many things to keep up with. *sigh*

Pom Pom said...

Good writing! I enjoyed your photos of the peonies and all the other stuff, too!

noricum said...

Thank you Pom Pom! I'm glad you enjoyed the peonies and everything else too. :)