Saturday, May 13, 2006


There was frost on deck again this morning. Not surprising given the clear skies last night. I looked out about midnight across our twilighted backyard to see Jupiter holding sway in the southern sky and a partial glimpse of the moon rising behind the trees. I doubt we get true darkness until the small hours of the morning. As always, my mind is just accepting that winter is over when we are poised at the edge of high summer. Time is accelerating toward the Solstice even before the leaves have appeared.

The rising sun soon cleared the deck of the lingering traces of winter. I decided to make a preemptive strike on Mother's Day and call my Mom a day early. Radical thought.

After the phone rang five or six times, my Dad answered. I'd called him in from the yard. Must be a nice day in Fairbanks if he's doing yard work. But Mom was out shopping, so we chatted with Dad a bit then signed off until later. Mom called when she got home and we had a nice visit via phone.

Denny and I decided to do a bit of yard work ourselves. After we'd thrown a handful of straw into each as a "starter," we hung the eight bird houses Denny had made last week. We're ready for the swallows now. I have even began to save up cat hair for them to line their nests. It's never a scarce commodity at our house.

I watered some of the planters that had over-wintered outside. One of the saxifrage plants didn't make it but the others are greening up nicely enough and the chives are several inches long already. After I watered the planters on the deck, I decided it was nice enough to bring the deck furniture out of storage, so Denny and I made a couple trips from the connex to the deck and got the table, umbrella, chairs and benches set up and ready for summer.

I spent a little time pruning the alders back from the walkway to the deck and the path to the greenhouse. There are a couple of them that I have been training into trees by judicious pruning. Wouldn't you know they are the ones Denny says will have to go because their roots will eventually threaten the septic system. Then we went out back to our little cat cemetary and I pruned some dead limbs off of the spruce while Denny surveyed the area for fallen trees to pull out.

We're working outside--must be well-nigh summer!

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