Friday, June 28, 2013

The June Garden

Since I run on solar power, sunny June is my best month. Beauty and ease everywhere - the girls come home happy from enrichment classes in photography and fashion and graphic design, then Nora and I have relaxed afternoon hours at the pool or immersed in Uno marathons while Mia takes Art in the Backyard the next town over. Our backyard grass feels like a warm soft carpet under my bare feet and the breezes are full of the perfume of flowers and green growing things.

I've been using the blasts of energy that the sun gives me to tend my neglected garden. An over-enthusiastic spring cleanup by the nice guys from Chalet left some of perennial beds bare so I've been adding new friends. The delphiniums were a disaster but the Dinner Plate dahlias are coming up fine. Here are some pics.

This patch was nothing but grass and weeds last year, but through some miscommunication, the lawn guys dumped a load of top soil on it so I decided to make lemonade. Or rather, spaghetti, since I'm just throwing stuff at the wall and seeing what sticks or blooms. I put in some peonies and purple flox (off-camera) and here you can see the purple and orange coneflowers and even some tomato plants because I had no other place for them. But my favorite part are those big feathery ferns that keep popping up. What gorgeous weeds!

 Prince's garden. We pluck a few greens for his salad every day.

The last of the fragrant peonies. A handful of soft petals fell off right after I took this pic.

 The fairy garden! Look at these miniature Coral Bells! In the lower left is a miniature Firecracker Plant, or Cuphea ignea.

We revived the old fairy garden that we placed on the north side of the old maple where there's already moss and tiny shamrock weeds. Mia found a little chunk of glass that the fairies left for us, cleaned it up and made it an art piece next to the new playground slide.

It cracks me up to watch chipmunks trying to balance on the ends of the skinny serviceberry branches while they steal the ripening berries. Now the squirrels are in on the act so I'll need to skip my plans for a pie. Not enough fruit, anyway, but...

 Looks like there's plenty of cherries coming! The early blossoms disappeared last year because, according to the Chalet guy, blah blah blah, I don't remember, rain or fungus or bugs or something. I don't care, this year we've got pie!

New copper boxes on the front porch rail. Good old lantana and new varieties of petunia: tiny yellow and white striped Superbells Lemon Slice! and the blackest petunia I've ever seen! Love it!

My poor roses. I refuse to feed them out of some kind of tough love/survival of the fittest mean streak, but they keep putting out blooms and anemic leaves and making me feel guilty.

Now this is the garden survivor I love: the weedy spiderwort. I brought a single pot of these when we moved from the bank ten years ago and they have spread and spread in varying shades of purple, pink and white. They fill up the bare space in the alley with their long spear leaves and bloom like crazy every morning. Keep on truckin', Spidey!


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Happy Fathers' Day

For me, the apostrophe is after the "s" and the gratitude goes out to three different wonderful men: To dear Randy, who is the best father my girls could possibly have; to my Uncle Phil, for all the years he cared for me; and to my father, whose love for me is the strongest and surest memory I have of him.

 Randy and the girls and me in Mexico, May 2013, for the wedding of my niece and the girls' cousin Maggie.

Phil's laugh was booming, but his giggles squeezed out of him in a high pitched rasp that you couldn't help but fall into.

My dad, Ronald Fey, Sr., with a Super 8 camera in his lap and tired little me at some sort of Old Wild West Town family outing. Either summer, 1967, when I'm two and a half, or 1968, the last summer we had together.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Fitzcardboardaldo and the Corrugation of Dreams

This is so good. Just what you have been waiting for.

The cardboard animated version of the Werner Herzog film about the dream of building an opera house in the Peruvian jungle with money from rubber trees only accessible by portaging a 320-ton steamship between two rivers. By going over a mountain. Without modern equipment.

AND the cardboard animated version of the documentary by filmmaker Les Blank (who just died in April) about the making of the film about the dream of building an opera house in the Peruvian jungle... etc. etc.

Little cardboard Werner's misery becomes even more poetic so many layers removed from the original experience thirty years ago. "Even the stars up here in the sky look like a mess...the birds are in misery. They don't sing, they just screech in pain..."