June 2010

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29 Jun Opossum Adventures

The other night the beagles treed a possum (well, “fenced” it would be more accurate, as it was teetering along the top of the back fence as all the possums and squirrels seem to love to do) and it hissed at them just like a cat. I wish I could have taken a picture but it was dark and I was already juggling a flashlight and the doggie-treat bucket. (Shaking the treat bucket is what we call “the nuclear option” in coaxing the dogs to come inside.)

The scary and sad thing is that so many of the wild critters we have around here (possums, raccoons, polecats, squirrels and even sometimes armadillos) carry rabies. I was terrified that the possum was going to fall off the fence into the dogs’ slavering jaws and get in a few good bites before it went to possum heaven. Much to the my relief (and the dogs’ disappointment) it escaped safely. The treat bucket provided consolation prizes.

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18 Jun A Writer’s Code

Ran across this great blog post from Karen E. Olson, the author of the lighthearted, Las-Vegas-based Tattoo Shop mysteries. It made me think about how I would articulate a Writer’s Code of my own. Here it is:

1. Write every day. (Momentum is everything.)
2. Work alone. (Editor and agent are exceptions.)
3. Read widely.
4. Never lose your sense of gratitude and wonder.
5. In fact, just get over yourself in general.
6. Be discreet.
7. Be generous.
8. Mind your manners.
9. Have fun.

What is your writer’s code? If you’re not a writer, what is your personal code?

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17 Jun More Lily Adventures

Last year we were amazed when a red Hurricane Lily popped up out of nowhere in our front garden. “Come back next year and bring some friends,” we cried. Well, ask and you shall receive. Yesterday afternoon we discovered an incredibly gorgeous orange double lily (still researching to find an actual name for it) right next to the spot where the Hurricane Lily appeared last year. We’re delighted but a little spooked—where are all these beautiful and exotic lilies coming from? And what do they mean? See the Photo Page for pictures.

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16 Jun Reality (Food) Bites

A new Top Chef season starts tonight. Yay! I don’t care for “reality” television in general but I do love Top Chef and its more pedestrian (in a culinary sense, at least) cousin The Next Food Network Star, which also just started a new season a couple of weeks ago. Haven’t picked favorites yet, but stay tuned.

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12 Jun Farmer’s Market!

Our little town has had a farmer’s market for three or four years now, but I’ve never been before because I’ve never managed to combine the elements of a) being up and dressed at eight o’clock on Saturday morning, and b) remembering that the farmer’s market happens at eight o’clock on Saturday morning. This morning, however! I set an alarm on my computer to remind me and the Broadcasting Legend™ and I went farmer’s marketing for the first time.

It was fantastic! A huge bag of fresh locally-grown produce (tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet corn) for a tiny price, plus freshly-baked artisan bread—a gorgeous crusty baguette which is not sourdough, which for some reason has become suddenly unobtainable at our local supermarkets. This one visit is all it took to make us farmer’s market devotees forever.

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10 Jun Oh, Yay. Jury Duty.

Later this month. Well, at least they now have an “ejuror” program with which one can check in online and not have to fill in the endless forms by hand. If only they had a “jury-from-home” option, along the lines of working from home. I don’t really mind the jurying part—it’s fighting my way through rush hour traffic to reach the downtown court building (and we’re a long way from downtown) by 8:30 in the freaking morning.

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09 Jun A New Comet

There’s a new Comet McNaught in town (well, in the sky, actually) and it might actually be visible to the naked eye. (Comets can be unreliable, so no one knows for sure.) Look for it low in the northeastern sky before dawn, in the constellation Perseus. This coming weekend should be a good time to check it out, because there’ll be a new moon on the 12th. More info on Comet McNaught, pictures and star charts here at Universe Today.

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07 Jun Summer in North Texas…

…means triple-digit heat indexes. Walk early or not at all. Then ice on my wrists and back to sixteenth-century Scotland. I feel for those poor historical washerwomen who didn’t have velcro cold wraps and neatly-packed bottles of aspirin. Although I do have to ask the Broadcasting Legend™ to twist off the #!*%$# child-proof caps.

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05 Jun Short and Sweet

Am going to try something new here—very short updates more often, instead of longer posts less often. I’m buried in The Silver Casket (no, not really, but you know what I mean) and the very thought of writing extended blog posts with pictures is freaking me out a little. I may post pictures from time to time on the Photos page. And my wrists are hurting a lot. And that is all for now

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02 Jun I Do Love Books

“Lord! when you sell a [reader] a book you don’t sell just twelve ounces of paper and ink and glue – you sell [the reader] a whole new life. Love and friendship and humor and ships at sea by night [and intrigue and death and wild adventure and passionate obsession in the Scotland of Mary Stuart]—there’s all heaven and earth in a book, a real book.”

—Christopher Morley (with interpolations)

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