Saturday, May 30, 2009

emerging from the basement

I found the last lid to the demitasse set. It fits the sugar bowl perfectly, so the lid that doesn't fit must belong to the pot.

Some of my grandmother's cake plates.

These two pitchers were given her by different people--I don't remember who--but a good rule of thumb is that if it's pink and green and has roses on it, it must be hers.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Sunday morning coffee on the balcony

(Can you read the thermometer? 72F~20C)

One of the first things I dug out of the stuff in the basement was the rest of the demitasse set that my grandmother had. (The boxwood grandmother.) I'd had one of the cups and five of the saucers with me for years and years and wondered what had happened to the rest of it. Now I've found it all: eight cups and saucers, the coffee pot, and the cream and sugar. I've only found one lid, and I'm not sure whether it belongs to the pot or the sugar bowl--it doesn't fit either one of them very well. But so far no bugs have drowned in the coffee.

I won't use it often. I prefer my coffee in bigger swallows than that. Today, however, I decided I should celebrate its discovery. With the wonders of modern life, I could keep the rest of the coffee warm in the pot while I drank tiny cups and absorbed the trees.

Saturday, May 23, 2009


The entire contents of my parents' basement--the house lived in for 47 years--minus what I managed to give or throw away over the past several years, is now in MY basement. Waiting for me. Lying in wait for me ?

Looking west.

Looking north.

Looking farther west.

This is my sewing set up. Nothing visible here is sewing related. It's all family papers. I guess I won't be doing any sewing any time soon.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

once and future hay

This looked more like hay last year.

Do horses like yarrow? and is it good for them?

I love daisies, though.

I hope somebody can be persuaded to cut this stuff for hay, even if nobody can be persuaded to eat it. Last year it wasn't full of flowers like this. Because of the rain, maybe? Last year the man who grows tobacco in the field next to my driveway, between the road and my horsy neighbor, cut my cute two bales as well as some of hers, and let her have it. I wanted something to eat it, after all. I know if it isn't cut the flowers will only get worse.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

green thumb descendant

Once upon a time, before I was born, but after my father was grown up, he drove my grandmother over to visit the graves of her great-great-grandparents. Around their graves grow boxwoods that came from the twig her great-great-grandmother carried across the mountains from Virginia. It was a hot August day, and my grandmother broke off a sprig and used it as a fan on the way home. Getting out of the car, she stuck it in the ground at knee level where the root cellar was. Without any more intention than that, it rooted. 
After my parents built their new house my father rooted some cuttings from that bush. From those he rooted many more that he gave away, two of which I took to North Carolina and planted in places I lived there, taking them back across the mountains. Now that we've sold that house, I've had one of the cuttings moved here. It was growing against the corner of the house there, and seems to be a little off balance here, but I hope it will straighten up when it's been in its new home more than four days. There isn't anything to show the scale, but it's about four feet tall.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

my tenant

Don't shudder. I like spiders. This one doesn't want to crawl onto a piece of paper and get tossed out the window, and I'm making an effort not to let her drown when I take a shower. But turning the water down to cool is more of a sacrifice than I'm willing to make.

There's nothing to show the scale very well, although the tiles are 12 inch, so I got out the measuring tape. (She didn't twitch a leg.) The body is about three-quarters of an inch long, and from tip of front legs to tip of back legs is about three inches. Large lady. 

Saturday, May 9, 2009

a bit damp around here

Now if only my garden would sprout!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

greener fatter leaves

The trees keep leafing out. It keeps raining. My broccoli plants are standing in little ponds, but so far their roots haven't suffocated. My second sowing of spinach didn't come up, just like the first one. The poor little seeds probably drowned.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Derby Day

I continue the family tradition of Not Attending the Kentucky Derby. 
When my father was in high school, he lived with relatives in Louisville so that he could go to high school. (One of his older friends road a horse six (hilly) miles each way every day for four years. Riding the street car two miles to a better high school was much easier.) In 1929 he went to the Derby with one of his uncles. It was a rainy day, like this one. His uncle had a winning ticket on the race just before the Derby, so he waited to cash it until afterwards. They were supposed to meet at his car. The crowds were such that my father couldn't get to the car, or find Tom, and he didn't have streetcar fare on him, so he walked home eight miles in the pouring rain. Ever since, most of my family have refused to try to go to the Derby. We listen on the radio, or watch television, in the comfort of our homes.