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broodings from the burrow

August 25, 2020

notes from the garden: late august
posted by soe 1:56 am

I often neglect to show photos from the garden in the height of summer. It’s overgrown and I spend all my time there watering and picking and weeding and then I get home and think, “I should have taken some photos.”

I have young bean plants and hope to have beans in early October, which is still plenty warm in the mid-Atlantic. I planted about a dozen varieties, so I will be pleasantly surprised by what shows up.


I have a bounty of cherry tomatoes. Marauders of the two- and four-footed varieties have plagued our community garden this summer, so most big tomatoes were picked. (I try to be Zen about it — I don’t need the food I grow. Maybe the people who hop our fence would otherwise go hungry. But it can be frustrating until I remind myself of that fact.) But the cherry tomatoes mostly have survived, and mine have branched out everywhere, including vertically down into my bunching onions.

Cherry Tomatoes Everywhere

The cucumber plant continues to be very productive, giving me one every week or so. There are plenty more flowers, so I’d expect productivity to continue through September, at least. (Side note: homemade pickles are delicious.)


I have had a stellar year with my cone flowers. Here you can see the various stages they go through:

Lifespan of My Cone Flowers

Not pictured but also growing: Herbs, potatoes, peppers, zucchini flowers (but never actual zucchini).

I still need to get some seeds in the ground for fall greens. They’ve gone with me to the garden a couple times, but I just haven’t gotten around to planting them, although I’ve now cleared the clover and violets out of where they should go.

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August 24, 2020

late august weekending
posted by soe 1:05 am

A Cat and His Girl

I had a laid-back weekend. Friday night we spent time up at the park, reading and enjoying the bats zooming inches over the grass and then soaring high into the air after their prey. We came home to eat supper and I found the Washington Mystics playing on tv. As a Connecticut girl, I’m a big fan of women’s basketball, and D.C.’s and Dallas’ teams put on a good show that went into overtime. We concluded the evening with homemade chocolate chip ice cream.

Yesterday, I did indeed get to sleep in. I also stopped by the local yarn shop just to browse for the first time since February (okay, I may have bought a new set of dpns made out of driftwood and some Soak, because one can always use more). I then headed down to the garden, where I put in a couple hours of weeding, yanking out the vines that had made the jump from the adjacent woods and pulling out some not-yet-budding milkweed (yes, monarchs… but weed is in the name and it grows like it; trust me, there’s still plenty left!) that was overshadowing plants I wanted to produce food for me. I then picked some figs from the tree by the garden and then did some grocery shopping, the combination thereof (grocery shopping itself is small potatoes compared to hauling three full bags all home by myself) I’m pretty sure justified eating as much pizza and ice cream as I wanted, which I did while watching the Chuck Brown Day anniversary concert, which was being livestreamed on YouTube.

Onion Flowers

Today, I went to the farmers market (no boxes of tomatoes this week, but plenty of other goodies), then had a pleasant brunch with Corey in the bedroom in front of the fan while listening to the Nationals game on the radio. I did a few chores around the house and then head over to Arlington to return the overdue book I had from their library. I celebrated finding my way to the library (Roads in Arlington move like staircases at Hogwarts. It’s best if you just don’t fight the concept.) by getting a cup of tea at a local coffeehouse and then taking a less circuitous route back to D.C. After a stop to water the garden and pick basil for our supper, I hightailed it for the park, where Rudi and I stayed until the sun turned in for the night.

It was a good weekend. How was yours?

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August 23, 2020

saturday sky
posted by soe 1:22 am

Saturday Sky

I’m not sure if particulates from the Western fires have made their way across the country or what, but the sunset tonight was just incredible.

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August 22, 2020

weekend planning
posted by soe 1:38 am

Since I don’t have to spend all weekend working, the next few days stretch before me luxuriously. Here’s how I hope to fill them:

  • Sleeping in: No obligations tomorrow and Rudi is off on a bike ride with friends.
  • Gardening: The back section of my garden is out of control. Plus, Now is the time to put in seeds for lettuce so that I have plants by the time the cool weather comes around.
  • Finishing my sock: And thinking what to work on during the Tour de France this year.
  • Reading: I’m quite enjoying the book I’m reading, even if it isn’t all happy. Also, I should probably head to Arlington to return my book.
  • Going to the farmers market: I wonder what Rudi would think about getting a box of seconds tomatoes for saucing.
  • Doing laundry: Doesn’t it feel like I should have less clothing to wash during the pandemic? (Other than masks, of course.)
  • Holding an ’80s dance party: It’s been a while, and it’s time.
  • Making dill pickles: Our bread & butter ones came out really well, so it’s time to expand our repertoire.

What’s on your weekend to-do list?

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August 21, 2020

white, green, and more temperate
posted by soe 1:05 am

Albino Squirrel

Three beautiful things from my past week:

1. Just a few buildings up from ours, we pass a foraging albino squirrel.

2. Local green grapes are now in season!

3. The weather has been cooler this week (high temperatures in the 80s, lows below 70, and sometimes even reasonable levels of humidity). It has made such a difference in my mood.

How about you? What’s been beautiful in your world lately?

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August 20, 2020

not quite unraveling in a hammock
posted by soe 1:23 am

Hammock Reading

I had the afternoon off today and swore to myself that I would not work for any of it. I packed a bag of supplies (bug spray, long sleeve layer, headphones, several books, and, it turns out, not my knitting), swung by the farmers market for snacks, and took myself up to the park. I did not grab my chair because I had a plan — I was going to use our hammock.

Last summer, I’d tried to use our hammock at the park, but couldn’t find trees that were close enough for the length of straps we have. However, I hadn’t given any thought a handful of smaller trees by the fence, and this summer I have seen several people with hammocks using them. Today was my day.

First, I pulled out Eoin Colfer’s Highfire. It started with a chapter about an anti-social dragon, which boded particularly well, but then switched focus to a teen boy and then a crooked cop. I’m sure it’ll be great when they all get on the same page, but until then I just wanted more dragon.

So I switched to The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise by Dan Gemeinhart. I think this middle-grade novel might be the next right read.

On the knitting front, my sock hasn’t had a lot of work done on it this week, but I will wrap it up in the next few days. (See forgetting to pack it above.) The Tour de France kicks off next weekend, so I’d like to go in with a recent FO under my belt. I haven’t decided what I’d like to knit, but I do think it will be a fresh cast-on, rather than the resumption of a project. I’m looking forward to it.

Head over to As Kat Knits to see what others have been reading and crafting lately!

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