Ivy is a little stinker. This morning I saw her place one of her swirly toys in front of the refrigerator. Then, like a golfer, one paw took a swing and knocked it underneath. Well she can just wait awhile before I rescue that one for her.

Ivy Pulls The Wool Over My Eyes:

And here I thought her toys were accidentally getting knocked under furniture, etc. Why would that cat want to create more work for me? Do you think she’s jealous of all the attention Charlie gets due to his illnesses?

Mr. Cardinal Visits The Patio:

I haven’t been able to get a decent bird photo all summer.

But when I moved everything back where it was originally on the patio Mr. Cardinal appeared on the settee.

He looked at me as if to say: “Now we’re talking. I like the settee under the tree branches.”

What Mr. Cardinal does not understand is that I had to continually rotate the plants around the patio to keep the heat from killing them. Especially the vegetables that were a side dish at every supper meal for months.

The Elusive Hummingbird:

I saw the hummingbird again yesterday in the evening and grabbed my camera. But I was not quick enough.

Cleaning Up The Patio:

Saturday and Sunday I worked on snipping dead growth on the patio.

There was plenty to do. But the heat kept me from doing it all at once.

Then I hosed it down and now everything looks cleaner.

So now there are empty pots. I’m trying to decide if it’s still too hot to plant the zinnias.

I may plant a couple of packages of lettuce I didn’t end up planting in the spring. Lettuce is a cool weather plant though. So I’ll have to wait a month or so.

The only zinnias left are the ones below. The tall ones are gone.

The ones below were my favorites.

Sense Of Accomplishment:

There is a certain calm and sense of accomplishment that comes with cleaning the garden up before fall. Even if it’s a little earlier than you’d prefer.

I suppose it’s like restoring the status quo. Setting things right.

A clean slate of sorts. Helping nature by doing your part to make things appear tidy again.

Bare earth in pots is better than looking at pots with dead plants in them. Then the flowers you still have blooming stand out for having survived the summer heat.

Which makes them even more special.

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  1. I think nurturing comes naturally to you whether it be your family, fur babies or your garden. I’d say that’s your Super Power. Listening to your stories of care taking never gets old and you certainly have a special way with words.

  2. Love your patio space! Last week I planted Zinnias and they germinated in three days! I have to keep them in pots and elevated (bunnies are a real problem for seedlings in my garden) So far they are doing great in this heat. ( I’m in OKC) Love that you have big pretty pots ready for fall crops. I can’t wait for pansies and kale to plant and hope I can find some swiss chard..it’s so pretty in pots! Stay cool in all this heat!

  3. Our cat used to hit everything he was playing with under our stove…we used to give him the little stuffed mice to play with but after I watched him eat one he no longer gets toys. When we had our kitchen floor replaced, they pulled out the stove and there were a dozen little stuffed mice. He has gotten so old now he does not play with anything…mostly sleeps.

  4. Once again you make your patio look so inviting! Do you ever tuck Real pumpkins into areas to admire in the fall or is it too hot there to set them out for a month or so. I vision you changing out patio decorations per seasons to give you a pleasant view. Maybe a topiary tree with white lights on during winter months.

  5. Even though I do not enjoy working in the yard, last week I began walking around seeing what I can do. It is still too hot to do much. I planted pumpkins in July. They have not grown and my Caladiums are suffering even with water every day. My dog would put his toys under the sofa. That stopped when I bought a much needed lower one. Now he needs a bath. Some way he knows when I start gathering things that it is his bath time. I have learned to close the doors to the bedrooms because if I do not he will hide with his tail sticking out from under the bed. He keeps me laughing.

  6. I don’t think Ivy is jealous of Charlie in the way we attribute to humans. She has you “trained” and she wants you to do your tricks for her. If you ignore her, she may come up to you and tap you on the leg with her paw and want you to follow her and I’d bet she would head you right to the kitchen and walk back and forth in front of the fridge meowing to let you know you didn’t do your trick! It’s like “my” squirrels. Every morning when I am home sometime between 6 and 7 a.m. I open the patio door and they’re waiting out on the patio for their morning ration of nuts. In winter, it’s a little later because the sun doesn’t start to come up until after 7 a.m. in deep winter. Same starting around 3 in the afternoon. During high summer they usually don’t come out mid-day – that happens in the winter, though. I figure they get hungrier because they use up more energy to stay warm, so they want meals morning, noon and evening. If I am not “on time,” they let me know! The larger “alpha” males will knock the sides of their bodies against the screen that in on the outside of the patio door all year round and rattle it. I can hear it in my den/library at the back of the house, the little buggers! If I don’t respond right away, they’ll do it more and louder, they really throw themselves at that screen to rattle it against the glass patio doors! I haven’t yet tested them to see how long they would do that before giving up, LOL. I go and feed them. Yep, they’ve got me well trained. I started cleaning up the messiest of my backyard bed about 10 days ago, still have more to do but I just can’t work out there when it’s sunny and 95 and the dew point is 73 – like today. YUCK! Tomorrow we will have a 24 hour reprieve, it will drop down to 81, oh boy. Seasonal temperatures are supposed to be in the mid 70s and the humidity should be much lower than it is but nope, welcome to the “new normal.” I HATE this new normal, absolutely hate it. I don’t want to have to give up having a home with a yard and my gardens, not yet.

  7. The patio and plants are beautiful and it is a never ending chore. Yesterday someone gave a good idea about a draft blocker under the furniture and refrigerator to keep Ivy from kicking her toys under them. You could reuse any foam that comes in a delivery box or a piece of foam pipe insulation (looks like a pool noodle). I don’t know what to think about blocking the air flow under the front of the refrigerator. You could look into that. I got a call from Walgreens saying my insurance company started a program because of Corona and just common sense to have all my 90 day prescriptions to be filled at the same time. Yes! Since I am on military insurance I have drive about 15 miles for pick up. While I am in the “big city” I do all my errands. I always have shopped a few miles from my house and continue to do so every other week or so. Have a good week!

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