Jabberwocky for 2001 November

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: Today I tested the remainder of the sprinkler pipes and found two leaks under pressure in the pipe that will carry the drip to the chitalpa tree. Replaced the joints. I put the sprinkler heads down the streetside line and began to bury the pipe. Mike PROMISES to come do plumbing tomorrow, 9 a.m.

Ruth Davis came over with Clayton to borrow my earth auger and my DeWalt drill. When I got the drill out, I discovered the cord has been puppyized. Ruth says she has some electrical tape and will fix it. Clayton had a good time playing hide and seek among the bullrushes with Quasimodo.

Every day when I go out, there are more sprouts reminiscent of the one Susanna got in her salad at Buchart Gardens poking their little heads up. They look like zinnia seedlings at first, but then they begin to grow like trees. I pulled them all out again this afternoon.

After a day of using a product called Decal-it to decalize Italic printing of Latin names of plants, I have decided it would be faster and more efficient to learn calligraphy and just do it on the rocks directly with a paint pen. I had to make the names on the computer (first finding the font, among my 3000 or so,) then flip the text, print it out and put six layers of the decal plasticy stuff, letting it dry between each coat. Now it has to dry for six hours, soak in water for 30 minutes, and then I have to peel the paper off before I have a decal. Even after all that, I don't know how it will go on a rock.

I did, however, make a decal that says "Si hoc legere scis nimium eruitionis habes" to podge onto the exterior wall of the garage. Highly experimental.

: Hooray! We have a dishwasher once again! Mike is supposed to come back in the morning and start putting the sprinkler valves in. I have twelve count 'em twelve lines running of a faucet in the side yard and I will have to tunnel under the sidewalk for each one. Gretel, however, already started the tunnel for me.

I made a calligraphy rock that says Acer negundo 'flamingo' and it looks okay, so I guess I'll go that route rather than keep trying to make the decals.

: Today I picked up Karen Nations and Kim Cornett and we went over to Beardsley School to watch Leeann Olson play volleball. I think she was a little embarassed but pleased to have all the "aunties" show up at her game. She played well and agressively, and I can't wait to watch her play basketball (starts in January.) "Our" team lost, but I took a lot of pictures, including one really good portrait of her standing in her sweaty uniform holding a volleyball under her arm. I'm looking forward to getting them developed.

After the game, we went with Karen Olson to lunch at Renee's for Karen Nations's birthday. Of course we had to spend a lot of time in Room With a View next door. The two grannies had a ball looking at all the cute baby things they have for sale in there. I asked KO if she thought I would become that silly when I am a grandma. Her reply: "I don't know, you are already plenty silly."

When I got home, Mike was here installing the gas log in the fireplace. It looks great! When he was finished, Gretel and I went out to hike on the Kern River Parkway and take the recycling in. Then, I had dinner with the Thiessens and the missionaries and we played a game of Scrabble, which I won due to a devious bingo over a double word score. Bro. Theiessen tried to cheat and play the word "roven" as in "We'll go no more aroven by the light of the moon", so I challenged him on it. This is the first time in my life I've ever had someone not back down when I challenged a word, but it wasn't in the dictionary, so I got the point and he lost his turn. It seems to me I should have had all the points he would have had if his word had been right, but we didn't know what the rule is and the rule book is missing from my Scrabble game.

: So. Yesterday I was sustained and set apart as Ward Activities Chairperson. This means I have to throw together a Christmas party on December 14.

Today I substituted for Odella Johnson, taught my class, came home, ate salad, went over to the Orrs so Erika could cut my hair, came home,worked in yard. I killed a huge black widow by hitting her with a hammer, got bit by something, moved a lot of lumber, and made more planter boxes for the garden. I worked out there until it got dark. Tomorrow I have to pick up dog poop and finish cleaning up after the roofers, and if I can, transplant the gelsenium and plant the citrus trees. I do have my papers all graded for Wednesday.

: Today I taught my class, went to Michaels to use my 40% off coupon on a picture frame for the family picture we are having taken in a couple of weeks, went to Vons and bought some [I suspect closeout] Pyrex refrigerator dishes on Vons Club. The question now is, should I dump the Tupperware?

I raked up all extraneous material in the back yard and the YM came and dug sprinkler trenches. Yay! Almost done! Except another box came from Parks. More to plant. Busy busy.

: The calligraphy is going well. I got the names of all the irises put onto rocks so I can plant them in the morning. Both irises and rocks. Park's Giant Rainbow of Iris Collection! (There's a redundancy in there... or a couple of them....) I planted all the lycoris and did their rocks. This was AFTER I dug mulch into mounds, filled in the rest of the sprinkler trenches in front, and dumped several wheelbarrow loads of old Bermuda grass, sticks, and roots. I did the biggest rock in my "collection" (not to be confused with any collections arriving via mail from Parks) for the sequoia sempervirens. I'm only going to label one of them. I figure people can surmise it's the same species of tree by the process of deduction. Or induction. Or association. Or they can just lookit the durn things.

Woohoo! We have a Cost Plus World Market here now, and today was the grand opening. They had a $10 coupon in the paper, and advertised a papasan chair for $35, so I went and bought one for my deck. Everyone in town was there for the grand opening. On the down side, House2Home has filed for bankruptcy, and will be closing their wonderful store.

: Rachel is home; we had a bridal shower for her friend Erika yesterday and went to Stake Conference. We also went to the House2Home bankruptcy sale and bought a porch glider and a dozen bags of cocoa mulch.

Mike came and started hooking up the sprinklers and I spread landscape weed cloth (bought from the Lumberjack bankruptcy sale) and bark. Tomorrow a dump truck full of sand arrives.

: Today I tunnelled under a sidewalk with eight lines of Sch. 40 PVC (with the help of Gretel). Then I planted all the citrus trees and ran sprinkler pipe for them and for the vegetable-garden-to-be. Then it started raining. Is now pouring.

Time to walk the talk. I said I got a puppy so I'd have to walk a couple miles every day no matter what the weather. Grrrrr.

I am reading Joseph Ellis's The Founding Brothers, which my brother Robert also picked up. The difference is that Robert chose to listen to the author reading this book. The college professor droning on and on really made Robert numb during his long commute. I don't think I would enjoy hearing the book read aloud at all, but it's a real page turner for me as a silent read. Funny thing. My book group friends didn't like it at all. I suppose they don't go in for all that analytical stuff. Reading this book has made me hungry to read the recent biography of Franklin.

: Mummy redux. I think I dug up another grave while digging holes for the Valencia orange tree. This one was ancient-- vintage Upper Whackotian, perhaps. "It" had been wrapped in a sheet of that bamboo slat fence cover stuff, which has long ago disintegrated. Remaining are the wire mesh woven ties that once held the bamboo together, and a bale of six inch long bamboo splits. No body, just black earth. And, hooray (!) one earthworm. Lots and lots of bamboo-- the stuff must be indestructable. Chinese fingernail torture, anyone?


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© 2001-2006 Frances Whitney.