Monday, August 8, 2016

Busy Busy

Well, first of all, its' been hot. 
I mean really hot. 
Like Swee'Pea can't handle it and so he is melting in front of the air conditioner kind of hot. Poor baby. 
Jacques, on the other hand, does not like the air conditioners, and so when they are on, he pees on my bed. Yup. It has been a challenge to keep ahead of his little brain - I tell ya. 

Before we get on to current events I have to do a catch up on a post I've been trying to post for a few weeks now.... My front steps!!! 

After a few seasons of snow and freezing and general weather, my pathetic little patch job on the front steps has given out. 
It was really bad. 
Lota of loose cement and dips and missing pieces. Thus the big orange cone. 

Step one: research online and find Qickcrete, a resurfacing concrete. Yay! 
Step two: filling all of the deep problems and missing parts with patches of thick Qickcrete. 

Step three: resurface the entire width of the step with the same material. So that it looks MUCH better. 
And you know, there is something about wet concrete... people just can't resist making some kind of impression on it! 

So I used violet leaves pressed under bricks.  
The results are kind of, meh - 

But I tried something new. If I decide I really hate them, I can use more Qickcrete to cover them up! 
      The "mostly dry" front steps. I am so glad to have this task off my plate. 

Back to more of contemporary times in Philadelphia - we survived the DNC! 
And it was hot for the DNC too. Even worse than right now. It did not let up. Oy vey! 
The DNC was an interesting week. My place of employment was involved in PoliticalFest which was really cool. We had a lot of visitors and a lot of press. Because I work right smack in Center City Philadelphia, Wednesday morning I walked right into this! (see above)
That is only one block of Police Presence. There were quite a few more.
Later in the day we found out that Joe Biden was having breakfast at a pub a few blocks north of us. The Philly PD pulled out all the stops. I had to make a huge detour to get to work. Still, as annoyed as I was to have to make a detour in the 8am heat of 85°F + 185% humidity, it was kinda neat to know that someone that important was within less than 100 yards of me. 

I escaped the Philadelphia heat and Thursday DNC craziness to drive up to the Berkshires for Melanie and Doug's Wedding Par-tay! 
And what a weekend it was! 

Melanie had an opening of her work, a solo show, which I did not get to spend enough time with. But what I saw was gorgous. So many new pieces and so many fabulous new books. Yay! Yay! This show seems like a milestone for her, a chapter in conclusion. :)

The Wedding Party was wonderful. They have an enormous space and were able to pitch a tent, have a live band, a pig roast, and and and. It was really fun. And I somehow manage to give myself a black eye. sigh. Let's just say that flat file cabinets - the metal ones? They are really hard and they really hurt when your face lands on them.

An additional bonus in North Adams (which did not over-shadow the Wedding Par-tay) was that I found a schoolmate from UArts also had a show at Mass MOCA.
Alex Da Corte was such a nice young man. (Do I sound my age or what!? Ugh.) Well! he was/is. He brought me a dozen Gerber Daisies for my MFA opening! If that isn't a sweetie? I don't know what is. It was so nice to see that he has continued his bright streak in the art world.
Sunday morning, after a lot of coffee and laughs about my fresh black eye, Melanie and I did "The Short Walk" which hits about 100yrds of the Appalachian Trail.  So I can truthfully say to people, "I hiked the AT this weekend." Ha! 

Then it was time to head home. I had to stop at Barnes and Noble to pick up the new Harry Potter! 
I managed to restrain myself until I was in New York. Then I had to stop at a rest stop, get a cup of coffee and read at least a few scenes of the first act. Gah! it's amazing! NEW Harry Potter stuff! Eeeeeee! 

Ahem, (one week later) I finished the book on Friday and I don't think I'm quite as excited as I was. I really need to talk to some other people who've read it, who KNEW it was a play (because they were paying attention) and who LOVE Harry Potter as much as I do. I shall reserve judgement until such time. I'd love to see the play. I can't even begin to imagine how on earth they are going to put this production together. 

In the garden....
Ah my garden. It was completely overgrown by the time I got home. In some good ways and some not. The brick walkway is completely covered. But my basil and tomatoes have finally, (finally!) done their jobs.

Unfortunately I missed my Night Blooming Cereus.
Sunday morning I discovered the spent bloom.  
As far as I know it is only the second time it has bloomed in the seven years I have cared for this plant. And I missed it. Bummer. In case you don't know, these only bloom one night. in the year.  They are so beautiful and the scent is indescribable. Sigh. Finger's crossed for next year.

Sunflowers have also finally started to bloom. It's sad that I am so allergic to them. :(

As a treat to myself I purchased some Orange "Cone Flowers" aka, Echinacea. I love the firey orange/red/yellow colors. I've planted them next to the purples and hope they take and reappear next year.   

My farm share has been abundant this year. I've made two batches of pickles! The haul form today will yield quite a few more goodies. I can't wait.