ritaxis: (hat)
I have an occasional private post for the less interesting/more disgusting aspects of chemotherapy that I want to keep track of, and that takes up time I'd otherwise spend posting public posts. Believe me, you're better off.

On the other hand, we did go for a nice walk in the Pogonip yesterday evening, and Zluta was very happy about it, especially since both Andrea and Zack took her for brief sprints. That dog could run for hours if she had someone to run with her.

Also, the library bought The Global Pigeon on my request so I have some research to do for the next not-Poland book.
ritaxis: (Default)
Zack and his girlfriend went shrooming yesterday and they broguht back a butter bolete, a queen bolete and more immense chanterelles than you can imagine.

I just ate a big old sandwich of chanterelle with onion, parsley, and oregano on ordinary whole wheat bread.

And also, I accidentally brought home my brother's hazelnut torte that I was packing for him to take home, so I ate it.

And also, the jellied compote (made from fruit I dried this summer and quince jelly I made this fall) is heaven. And so is my sister-in-law's whole orange cake which I have to figure out how to do myself in the future.

I'll go back to greens'n'beans tomorrow. That will be heaven also.
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I collected about two liters of blackberries along the Arroyo Seco path by University Terrace Park today, and came home to make jam.  I almost lost it from spacing out.  But the jam, while too thick, is not burnt.  There's burnt jam on the bottom of the pot, but the rest of the jam tastes good (not amazing).  I think I should make another batch with the berries from Emma's house.  Also, since I am not scheduled at work this week, I think I should get strawberries and make strawberry jam for Emma.  And that will be pretty much it for jam.  Well, and lemon marmalade.  I'm not making apricot jam this year, because except for the strawberries I have a policy of not buying fruit for jam this year.  I've used wild plums and blackberries, and I can use my own lemons.  I decided that jam is not the best use for the Satsuma plums.  I have plenty of other projects for those.  And for the apples.  I used to think home canned applesauce was kind of a waste, but I ate all my applesauce last year and wished I had made more, so I suppose I will make more this year.  If the apples and pears at Emma's house are any good this year -- last year they weren't, and I don't know why -- I can do something with them too. 

I also have figs coming along, but Zack will account for all of them in desserts he makes for the Wednesday night game meeting at Connie's house. I have been dropping by there for a half-hour or so after I walk the dogs at Ocean View park, which has a little hillside path leading out of the dog area.  It overlooks the river and the Boardwalk on the other side, which is quaint and nostalgic for me because Ted and I used to live near there for a few years and when we worked at the Boardwalk we used to go there by crossing the railroad trestle near there.  You're not supposed to take your dogs offleash on the little hilly path but I had gone there several times and met several other offleash dogs there before I even saw the sign.  So I ignore it.

We spent two hours at the berrying today.  The dogs actually got bored after a while and came and stood around me with eager expressions -- like, Can we go do something else now? But when other dogs came along the path they were happy.  I think that's the only place in Santa Cruz city where you can take your dog offleash and get in a mile-long walk.

I'm killing time because I'm getting Emma at about one o'clock in the morning and I didn't put myself to bed earlier and now there's no point.    She's essentially working a double shift this week, and by double I mean double. I did that once -- I worked spinach season at the freezer plant and ten hour days at the small leather goods factory.  I did it because it seemed romantic and I thought it would only be for three weeks because spinach season was really short.  But it went on for more like two months and I was really wiped.  And then one year when I didn't get a teaching job and I was subbing half-heartedly and we were pretty strapped Ted worked as a manager at a fast food joint at the same tinme as he was a cook at the University.  He did it for a few months and then I put my foot down, because while he was doing that I couldn't get a real job because there were the kids and all the stuff around the house to take care of and he was exhausted all the time and I had to take care of him, too.  Most people who moonlight for a long time take on a part-time job for their second job, not a full-time one.  But Emma's only doing this for a week, fortunately. 

I always think in ":we" instead of "I" when I think about doing things or going places, even though "we" has to mean me and the dog(s) nowadays.  Sometimes I remind myself of that Star Trek Next Generation episode where they captured a single Borg soldier and he was completely freaked out about being separated from his pod or whatever it was called. 

I'm all sticky from handling the blackberries. 

Another project I want to do is to take cuttings from the prune tree in Emma's yard, because those are very nice and you don't see that variety around here.  Most of the fruit in Emma's yard is suffering horribly.  I suppose it's from neglect but I have seen neglected fruit trees that had better and more abundant fruit.  I don't see any sign of disease: just mostly empty branches, and last year most of them except for the plums and blackberries did not develop much flavor.

She's ready!  I'm going to get her now.

ritaxis: (Default)
Today, in the front yard:
Pruned 3 salvias, 3 roses, cuphea, moria, a little bit of the flowering quince, and some tips of the front yard lemon tree, purned, dead twigs pulled out. Some nasturtium and violets pulled out of the areas around that weird madagascar geranium I'm encouraging to naturalize. Planted the western sword fern and the salvia and the weird-ass fuchsia, leaving only the yerba buena to plant out of the stuff from the arboretum/native plants society sale, yesteray, I think: I'm goingto regret the salvia because it's the greigia-microphylla kind and it needs more than the space I put it into and it's in the right position to take over the gateway. Maybe I'll move it before it gets settled, if I decide I can put it on the other side of the front yard.

The greencycle can, which is huge, is full.

In the back yard:
I took some stuff out of the purple mexican sage and the pineapple sage (do you detect a trend here? salvias are largely nearly natives, and they can take a wide range of water and light conditions, don't let anybody fool you: for the central coast, they're even more forgiving than fuchsias). Planted something called "berggarten sage," which has fat leaves and looks cute, also french thyme which is indisztinguishable from the english thyme nad the german thyme it's growing with, an orange mint (no, I do not have too many varieties of mint, thank you: only grapefruit, chocolate, orange, and pineapple and of course peppermint and spearmint. You can't have enough varieties of mint, sage, thyme, or oregano. I'd say basil too but I can't grow basil to save my life). Also planted lemon verbena, without which my life is not complete: it's just about the first plant I grew as an independent person and I am in love with it. I don't care if it's lanky and ungainly looking, I don't care if it's close to useless and has no striking features. It smells like every good thing I ever did.

Spent another two hundred dollars on wood and stuff. When Zac pulled the sliding door out of the wall upstairs he discovered that the framing wood is rotted almost all the way away, partly termites and partly water damage. So that wall needs to be substantially rebuilt. He said to a friend we met at the lumber yard "I have to stop taking up boards. Every time I do I discover another huge mess."

Paul suggested he might just stop looking at what he's doing . . .

On another front, they arrested Frank again. They had said they would mail him his instructions but instead armed policemen showed up at his door and took him to the station where they kept him under arrest while they filled out papers. His instructions: he has to be out by June 15th (he will probably be done by then) and he can't apply for a new visa till he's been out of the country for thirty days (he was going to spend a month and a half or so at home if he didn't have to take a class in Prague this summer).

Nobody actually came down and said it was a shakedown, and when Frank didn't mention the possibility of paying them for the privilege of being treating according to the law, they didn't either, and they didn't do anything worse to him than to interrupt his peace of mind and make him miss a class.

My new camera takes panorama shots and also can do closeups to 2 centimeters.

And it's harder to get redwood cones out of dog leg-feather hair than anything else in the world. I have had to take a scissors to Roxy (the temporary dog, who is going back to my nbrother-in-law Monday and I would hate to send her with mats and burrs all over her).

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