Home at last! I've missed my computer and checking in with all my blogger friends. I tried it on dial-up where I was staying, but that was impossible. So now it may take me a few evenings to catch up with you all. I can't wait to see what I've missed! Thank you for all your beautiful comments and support--it means so much to me.
The colonial style house where I've been petsitting has a beautiful door with a shock of corn hanging on it. Very New England. One morning on my way out I spotted some dried grass on the step. Looking up I found the beginnings of a bird's nest in the husks of the corn. I stopped using that door and the nest progressed over a couple of days. I looked every day but never saw the builder. After a couple of weeks, I looked all around. No bird in sight. I reached my camera up and snapped this picture:
Look at that blue! So intense, that blue--she had to be a robin. We had a few hot days around that time and I still never saw her around. Then it started to get cool again. One evening as I came home she was sitting on the nest. She never moved. The glare of the headlights didn't faze her. I drove into the garage and moved slowly, so not to scare her.
The next morning there she was. I walked around the car, got my camera out and took some pictures. Shutting car doors and driving out of the garage didn't move her. Over the next week she was sitting on those eggs every time I looked. Stoic little robin!
The homeowner is awestruck--she considers it a true blessing. I'll be back there in a couple of weeks. Maybe there will be 3 little squeakers then! I'll let you know how it turns out.
I had Mom and her sister and my niece over for lunch on Mothers' Day. Fresh pea soup with goat yogurt, local asparagus, sauteed ginger shrimp and a nice green salad. A lovely light lunch for the ladies. Knowing that at least one brother would show up, I got a loaf of bread and some goat cheese (a few of us are lactose intolerant). I ended up with all 3 brothers and a nephew-8 people in all. We finished the meal with Trader Joe's Sweet 16, a dessert tray of 16 little treats topped with whipped organic heavy cream and lemon curd. (Yes, I did have some whipped cream!) A nice meal, good stories and gifts. A happy Mother's Day.
Driving Mom home later, we noticed that the ladyslippers were in bloom! They usually bloom on Memorial day or thereabouts--this year they are 3 weeks early--and it was cold that day!
Ladyslippers always remind me of Dad. In July of 2004 he passed away after many strokes and illnesses. We had had to place him in a nursing home for his last 18 months. He had lost much of his speech and memory by the end. He and Mom had agreed that when he died, we would scatter his ashes in the ladyslippers.
The following year we had a Memorial Day service for Dad and his brother Jake who had passed away 6 months later. That day we all went to Mom's and got the ashes and walked around the yard and into the woods to all the ladyslippers. We told stories about Dad as we walked through the woods, each of us, including Dad's grandkids, taking handfuls of ashes and sprinkling them everywhere we saw the flowers. Richard finished by leaving a few ashes next door at the farm where Dad was born and grew up, and some in the brook that runs through the woods.
Ladyslippers are orchids and they require very specific growing conditions. I worried that all those ashes might upset the balance and damage the plants. But Lo! The next year, there were more ladyslippers than ever. It seems that every year there are more and more. Dad wasn't a great gardener in life, but now he's showing us!
This Spring everything has bloomed 3 weeks early. It was a remarkably beautiful, lush, blossomy Spring. All I can think of is "stoic little flowers!" We all got excited and planted flowers and seeds. Now we are having a cold snap with heavy winds. Who knows what next week will bring. I'm hoping for calm winds and warm days so I can get out in my kayak. Dreaming on...