Every morning Ivy and/or Charlie wake me up. I let Charlie out, then Ivy is waiting with a swirly toy in her mouth ready to play a game of fetch.

It is so funny to watch her. She backs up and her eyes grow wide with anticipation. Just like a dog would in the same circumstances. She gets really still, waiting for me to throw it down the hallway.

Playing Fetch With Ivy:

I throw the swirly toy and you can’t imagine how fast that big cat can move. She often slides into furniture, but nothing deters her from getting that swirly toy.

I don’t know how much Ivy weighs now. About a year ago when she got her vaccinations updated she was I believe 14 pounds. I’d say she’s still around that. Maybe 15 pounds.

Above she is sunning herself in the morning sunlight coming through the storm door. Animals seem to love to do that, don’t they?

Charlie never liked to play with toys or play games. So he watches her but does not get into the groove. He probably thinks it’s silly for her to run through the apartment just to pounce on a swirly toy.

I’ve been trying to recall when Ivy started with this. When she first brought a swirly toy to me and I figured out that she wanted me to throw it. It’s been less than a year ago I think.

But now we play 3-4 games of fetch a day.

Cool October Morning:

This morning when Charlie and I went out it was quite cool. Yet it will probably get up into the high eighties if the forecast is correct.

I am looking forward to using my little portable fireplace in the months ahead. It feels so cozy in here curled up in my chair with the warmth it puts out. So pretty with the fake flames, even though they’re fake.

The house plants have all been cleaned up and brought inside. I am turning my attention to them now. They will get me through the winter until I can plant out on the patio again.

One of you asked me yesterday which plants I’ve had the most success with outside on the patio.

Outdoor Plants That Do Well Here:

I’d have to say that the zinnias do very well. As do various types of daisies and morning glories. There’s a yellow rose in a big container that I bought 3-4 years ago.

Yellow roses against a woman sculpture

I believe I added the white clematis the first summer I lived here. Which has now been six and a half years.

Hostas have done great in the blue raised garden I added about four years ago. They are still putting out their tall white flowers right now.

I planted Lamb’s Ear either last year or this year. It has grown to about six times its original size. I think the trick was to get a bigger size, about a gallon container. Before I would get smaller ones and they died.

I plant lots of different types of herbs. And I have two trees on the patio in containers.

Let’s see…I planted alliums this year. I always plant sedums, though most come up on their own year after year.


The veggies that have performed the best in containers are cherry tomatoes, cucumbers from seed and various types of peppers.

I also like to have ornamental grasses in my garden because of the texture they add to the landscape.

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  1. It’s nice to see someone so willing to share their knowledge freely with others. I so enjoy reading your “thoughts” every day and look forward to them. Sometimes I feel you become a bit introspective and that helps me to do the same thing, something I avoid at any cost. But, I do see the value in it… seeing where we’ve come from can help us get to where we want/need to be. I guess NO ONE has the answers and we are all looking for what works best for us. You seem wise to me…. you always share what works for you without making someone feel that they should do the same thing but instead, what works for them. Thanks for offering a safe place to come everyday for a break from “real life”.

  2. Yes, if I recall correctly, you started teaching Ivy how to play “fetch” less than a year ago, I’d say no longer than 6 or 7 months (at a stretch). But once she got it, she really got it and now she won’t leave you alone, LOL. I remember at first, you were disappointed that she didn’t seem to be “getting” what you wanted her to do, HA! It’s been COLD here in SE Wisconsin. When I got up just around 7 a.m. (late) there was definitely a coating of frost on all of the roofs, eek! But the sun was out all day. It would have felt nicer out but for a strong wind out of the west. It is supposed to be better tomorrow. Regardless, once the heavy dews that form during this time of the year dry off (about 1 p.m. or so) I need to get outside and cut the grass in the back yard. It will be sunny and dry for the remainder of the week, even if “cool” (it feels COLD to me).

  3. The marigolds that are looking great in my yard right now are called “Jaguar” from Burpee. They are a single-petal flower with a yellow-orange background and a red spot at the base of each petal around a yellow center. The flowers really jump out against the green foliage. I really like single-petal flowers of any type more than double flowers, so I will plant these again.

    Once I swapped some flowers with another gardener. She said she’d give me some Lamb’s Ears. But, after I planted the fuzzy-leaved plants, I discovered they actually were mullein. Mullein is regarded as an herb or a weed depending on whether you like the plant or not, since it can grow three to six feet tall and is rather rustic looking. I did like the plant, but it certainly didn’t work at the front of the flower bed where I planted it! I now have some mullein growing in a corner of the yard that doesn’t get much attention, and it looks fine there, out of the way. I still don’t have any Lamb’s Ears, come to think of it.

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