catchmyfancy: (captain logic is not steering)
The front garden was THIS HIGH in weeds.   Lots of rain, lots of sunshine, and they were having a lovely time.

I managed to ignore the mess for some weeks but eventually I got sick of the ever-burgeoning dandelions mocking me and so I had a moment of GRAHNGRAGHRFTGR and they were the first things to go.

But I cannot do sustained weeding: can't kneel for very long (if at all) and I have long legs and short arms, so bending from the waist is hardly optimal either.  So I hit on the solution of dragging out the old vinyl pouffe and plonking it right on the ground in the current Area of Interest:
(a) it sinks me close enough to the ground that I can sit and reach weed roots quite handily around me for up to an hour at a time; and
(b) I do have oddly good hip turnout, so I could reach right forward, practically supporting my weight on one hand while the other wreaked havoc upon my weedly enemies.

And it is DONE.  Path cleared, garden cleared, and a very full green waste bin ready to be collected. 

The story should end there: there were weeds, the weeds were removed without too much strain on my body, yays! 

Except it doesn't because it alerted me to some bugs in my programming. 

stuff about anxiety etc )
catchmyfancy: (Default)
The magnolia is starting its sloooow explosion of colour and complete awesome...but it's not quite into the Full Gobsmackery just yet.

Next sunday (29th) I shall be having my magnolia tree appreciation afternoon tea and scones methinks...

tone cluster

More here!
catchmyfancy: (Default)
My beautiful magnolia tree (see: icon) is working its way up to flowering.

This one peeled off the first layer today:

Magnolia peek

More macro gardeny goodness.... )
catchmyfancy: (strawberries)
Yesterday was Glorious.

Capital G intended. As in: full of Glory.

In the horrible deep grey meh of a Melbourne Winter this sometimes arrives: a clear brilliant day, with actual detectable warmth in the sunlight. The city goes very still and quiet as everyone sits or stands around and does their darnedest to photosynthesise; and life seems a little less impossible.

Even my camera got inspired:

red-veined flower

snowdrop and buds

click here for more of the pretty )
catchmyfancy: (the compass rose)
We begin in the garden (of course):

Some calla lily leaves. I've learned to live with these things - no matter the level of extreme prejudice that I apply to pulling them out, more pop up in their fleshly way. They're sort of pretty in a "should something this lush be in a temperate Melbourne garden in Winter?" sort of way:

shadow lily leaves

more gardeny goodness )
Then this morning I went and interacted with some human beans, including one little bean not long out of the pod:

Mini-me - detail

These were taken in a dim little cafe that is run by French ex-pats who are happy to provide exquisite galettes and coffee and even to listen to one's not-very-good French. But the most important word in that sentence back there was "dim" - and my camera coped pretty well, given I did not want to turn on the flash and upset the little one.

Still, I think there's a nice warm feeling to these photos - Kirsten (the big bean) has a lovely still quality. Keiran (the little bean) does not. But it's part of his charm. And there was much charm to be had, viz:
meet one of our cuter little Australians... )
catchmyfancy: (this is my planet)
Just add rain! 

Especially if you can duck outside during a break between the downpours, when everything is at that still, cold, drippy, hushed stage of the proceedings. 

Then you get the Australian version of Raindrops on Roses; viz:

wet waxflower

click for more of the wet-in-the-wild... )

Snap!

Jun. 2nd, 2010 06:56 pm
catchmyfancy: (Default)
More photography on the most glorious clear day a couple of weekends ago. (Seriously: fathomless blue skies; clear, golden sun; everyone suddenly acting like plants that haven't had a chance to photosynthesise in a while and turning face-up, eyes-closed hummy little faces to the sun...)

I dragged a kitchen chair out into the backyard and pretended to read for Quite Some Time.

Sunday afternoon perch

Clickety! )
catchmyfancy: (escher)
A week or so ago I was meandering through old entries trying to find a recipe I posted a couple of years ago. 

Which is like going to look up just one small thing in the encyclopedia and coming to about two hours later sitting on the floor surrounded by open volumes.  I guess the internets equivalent is getting sucked into the TV Tropes vortex.  (Click on link at your own time-management peril).

I ended up reading the first six months of entries wherein I came to grips with physical training (and my vocal injury), and I realised a couple of things:
(a) I really suck at tag management and will now have to go back and re-tag everything
(b) posting little and often and using the blog as, ooh I don't know, an online diary or something really actually worked.  I liked being able to type the words "just back from the gym", so I tended to BE just back from the gym.

I've been updating on Facecrack, but that just dissolves into....somewhere and nowhere.  You can't go back a couple of months easily, never mind a couple of years.

These days I have multiple projects on, so instead of just one multifaceted project (like [personal profile] etfb 's Project Apple - and hey - that one worked!) I bring you THE LIST (dun dun duuuuun!)

Here they all are:

1. LMusA practical singing exam - 40 minute recital with bonus viva voce from the examiners -  Deadline: mid-Sept

2. Musicianship 6th grade (basically the written component of (1): aka just cos you can sing pretty doesn't mean you're allowed to be all iggerant and not know a relative minor should one bite you on the arse)(and believe me, in the past they have)  Deadline: mid-August

3.  Lyrebird music society recital: 5th September at 2.30pm DO come and bring all your friends 80 minute recital (or two 40-minute halves - if ever I was losing my junior journeyman status and heading towards senior in the bizarre ricocheting journey that is my musical career where I'm either an earlier-spent-force-regathered or a very late bloomer - pick one -  and looking ahead to the dim, daunting peaks of mastery, September will be the month to KNOW.)

4. Geoffrey Parsons award: 28th June in Ajuloide.  Me and Tom throwing down in the city of churches.

5. Stash wars: who will win - the fabric stash or me?  In this challenge I attempt to ignore the screams of the fabric as I cut into it and actually turn it INTO something and get it out the door, or in use around the house. Deadline: end of 2010, it's gone, it's made, or it's earmarked.

6. Stuff wars (a slightly snappier title than "jesus mary joseph and ethel merman, I am drowning in STUFF and it must go before I turn into someone who has to clear a path into the rooms they want to use...").  Deadline: right bloody NOW.

7. Garden: needs to be looked after better.  Deadline: so it's pretty in the Spring.

8. Gym, fitness, sleeping, eating - I'm giving this one no deadline, but I'll go with: make the better decision.  Every time.  It helps to have perspective: one of my singing teacher's other students came for her lesson and we were chatting about staying well and looking after yourself and all I could hear was whine-whine-whinge (yeah, she's young and fairly ridiculous, just like looking in the retrospectoscope for me) and when she said "I'll try", I have to admit I lost my temper a little and my parting line was: "as Yoda says: Do.  or Do Not.  There is no 'Try'."  It is a fabulous exit line.  But as I dodged trams across Royal Parade, I had to admit: good advice for me too.  I either make the right decision (going to bed at 11pm not 2am; going to the gym instead of sitting hunched at my desk; cooking real food instead of eating whatever) or I don't.  And no whining about the consequences.  (not the warmest and fluffiest of places to be sitting, but at least it's honest).

And that should keep me going for a while, I reckon...
catchmyfancy: (Default)
Autumn and winter bring out the pretty in my garden.

Lots of flowers (wait until the magnolia gets going later in the season!) and lots of what my Dad likes to call Things of General Interest.

Have a couple of opening salvos:



Clematis seed pods: No coyness here - these are sperm coiled and ready to go (despite the fluffy covering).
More pretty pix under the cut )
catchmyfancy: (strawberries)
Despite my very best efforts to slowly kill it through absent-minded neglect, my cherry tomato plant has shamed me into looking after it, by doing things so unstintingly generous as THIS:

Photobucket

For every two little half-ripe tomatoes I harvest and put into the ripening bowl (which sounds a bit like it should be in a bad fantasy novel doesn't it?) another one or two or three appear.

I go out and say sorry and give both of my tomato plants (there's a Russian Black that's got flowers all over it) the collected warming-up-the-shower water most mornings. I know when I've been beaten into submission.
catchmyfancy: Classical-style painting of the three graces or muses, naked, each holding an apple in her outstretched hand. (graces)
I'm planning a sort of photo essay on the glorious magolia tree in my backyard, but until I can get around to editing and arranging this year's photos, here's a glimpse, taken last weekend as we get towards the end of the flowering phase:





catchmyfancy: A honey bee feeding from an eriostemon flower, in sunlight (busy bee)
that's what I get when I find pictures like this in my camera. 

Look at it and tell me if you don't get the same horrible nagging sensation of order and rightness and "kein'angst-baby"-ness. 

Which is incorrect for a Sunday afternoon, when one should be entering the Long Dark Teatime of the Soul.



catchmyfancy: A honey bee feeding from an eriostemon flower, in sunlight (busy bee)
I have a winter garden, pretty much: at its most spectacular round about - ooh - nowish.

Exhibits A through D, for your delectation:












catchmyfancy: (Default)
Seeing as this popped up in my garden this week:



catchmyfancy: (contented sun)
Just hearking back to my Devonian Farmer forebears there (and I mean Devonian as in "from Devon" not as in "geological era".  We have even met the modern-day farmer Okes - third cousins or something, descendants of the son who stayed in Merrie Englande [whereas we are descendants of the son who went "buggrit" and came to Oztraylia to work himself to death on land he actually owned...thinking on it, this could explain a lot of my family's..err, decision-making oddnesses, shall we say] - and who say things like "Arrrr - therrre be tractorrrr" in an accent so thick you have to keep running away to giggle impolitely in the bathroom if you are visiting them - swear to god.  ANYWAY.)

I went into a sort of fugue state this rather lovely sunny-but-cool afternoon for a couple of hours; and when the fog lifted the following had been achieved:

- the dried carcases of the Monster 4-foot-high Dandelions and their Assorted Weedery Posse were all in squished into the green waste bin

- the two horrid climbing roses (put all their effort into extra thorns and developing mildew and aphid herds and bugger-all into actually growing much or, you know, flowering) were cut back and then dug up and made into the basis of a new Pile of Stuff to Dry Out Before Going Into the Green Waste Bin.  They went down fighting (my hands could currently be used as colanders) but in the end I sneered at their withering corpses.  O yes.

- also dug up two supposedly sun-resistant azaleas.  yeah right.  If you put 30+ spf sunscreen on them every day.  They are on the Pile now too.  Buwahahahaha. &etc.

- attacked the pittosporum and trimmed it from 6 feet high to 3 feet high

- taught the Monster Rosemary Bush some manners, and pruned it to about 25% of its former volume.  Found that it had been hiding the following:
  • a whole phalanx of miniature agapanthus (the blue Christmas Bells) that some numpty - probably my mother on one of her more stubborn days when the Aliens had temporarily borrowed her brain - planted right next to the Monster Rosemary Bush thus damning them to a rather fragrant obscurity
  • a lot of dried magnolia leaves which may now actually get a chance to decompose
  • a red-back spider and its egg sack.  Now both thoroughly squished and added to the Dead Enemies Pile.
- trimmed the hebe bush a bit, but my heart wasn't hugely in it - it's a biiiig job

- weeded the bit next to clothes line where the clumps of grass were now about two feet high and ended up with a sub-Pile next to that

- pruned the eriostimon longleafs on both sides of the garden

- hacked back the federation daisies which were looking kinda leggy

- Moved the Impromptu Compost Heap of Magnolia Leaves and Associated Detritus from the side pathway (prevailing winds mean they all end up piled against the side gate at the end of every winter, whereupon they start to decompose in a textbook mannder, to the point where I found a nice half-centimetre-thick layer of soil established on the concrete path as I raked everything up, complete with two big, fat, and thoroughly pissed-off worms who expressed their resentment in being re-homed with some particularly peeved writhing) to the actual garden bed under the magnolia.

- raked the back garden and swept all the garden bed edges so the bricks look neat and geometric instead of overly organic.

- plotted some plantings for the now-available spaces.  As Karl has promised me a sundial for my little feature square closest to the house, I SO have to get some thyme plants to put around it.

And now I am off to bed to sleep the sleep of the just; while the rotting bodies of my planticular enemies lie in ruin in several heaps in the back yard.

Arrrrrrrrrr.
 


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