Friday, July 28, 2006

Yeah More of the Garden

Can't help it. It's these high summer flowers I like best, the ones that are happiest when the sun is beating the rest of the world back into the cool air conditioning of their homes and offices. These flowers are even from the same part of the garden as the last picture below, but the light is better, so I had to put them up.

It was one of those rare mornings when I was awake before both kids. I put some of the blueberries we picked last weekend on my Grape Nuts and went outside to the picnic table and, for once, ate my breakfast without hearing Clifford or Dragon Tales in the background. It was a lot of nice for a mere ten minutes of time.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

While I was out

The above picture is what happens when you leave the moles in charge of your lawn when you go on vacation. I think you can see four or five traps sitting there, poised and useless. I have not caught a mole in a long time, though I've had some very exciting close calls. Is this any way to spend a summer? Well, it's one way. It's not bad. The secret is to learn how to look beyond the scarred tatters of your lawn to see the colors of your high summer perennials (which were lovingly looked after by Michelle--thanks!!). It's about perspective.

You can't see it in the top picture, but there is a bird bath in this corner of the garden that gives me all kinds of perspective. It's just this simple concrete design, very Japanese or something, and I rarely even see birds in it, but I find myself thinking about it. Some nights right after I brush my teeth I will turn off the bathroom light and then look out the window at my bird bath in the moon (well, and street) light and I know that nothing bad is going to happen while I'm sleeping. Just one of the lies we tell ourselves so that we can stop thinking and fall asleep, of course.

In other news, I can't stop listening to the Fiery Furnaces latest, Bitter Tea.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Sturgeon Bay, Michigan

J on the beach, this stretch of beach I'd been wanting to get back to for a few summers now but never took the time. We remembered this hidden part of the beach that you could only find if you followed a hidden two-track and we drove slowly along seven miles of the loneliest road in Michigan trying to find it, but gave up and drove to the public part. This part of the state is so hard to get to, though, that we had it to ourselves almost. Really, one of the prettiest stretches of sand and water and dune I've ever seen.

The next time you are on a sandy beach, make sure you take the time to take a small plastic shovel and dig as deep a hole as you can. Dig to the wet sand and keep digging until you make a small underground lake. I felt five years old when I did this. I took the wet sand and built tiny castles and my children immediately stomped them back into the sand every time. How did they know that's what you're supposed to do? It's something we're born with, I suppose.

Live Strong

Here's kind of a funny snap I took during the Indian River, Michigan 4th of July parade last week. I wish the punch line showed up better. I just like the irony of a guy with a LiveStrong bracelet combined with a skull tattoo and cigarette with a long ash hanging sticking out from his knuckles. Cracks me up. It's the ash that I should have caught against a darker background, I think. At the time, I was just trying not to get caught by him.

Small town parades are the best. You forget that 1/2 of every parade is taken up by local merchants driving cars with the names of their businesses on them--it's just a rolling commercial where you have to sit in the sun and listen to the firetrucks blast their horns in your ears for 30 minutes. But still, they're the best.