Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Relief! And a Few Problems Fixed.

 The wind direction switched last night, and the high pressure moved out and coastal air moved in. By midnight it began to cool off and by this morning it was down to 66 outside. We had fans going to blow the cool air in and the hot air out. We were greatly relieved.

The high today was 84, more than twenty degrees cooler than yesterday's high of 108. It might actually be cloudy for a while tomorrow morning.

The new filter fixed the refrigerator ice maker. :-)

Our TV screen began to darken at the top. I went on line, found a fix, and now the TV is fixed. :-)

The furnace/heat pump/air conditioner service man came this afternoon. He analyzed the problem. It's complicated. It will need a part which has been ordered. We will have to wait for the part. It is all going to be expensive. The AC is not fixed. :-(  But eventually it will be. All it takes is time and money.:-/

I got up early enough to do my hour of physical therapy this morning before our 9:30 Zoom meeting. Then I went outside to do some work in the coolness of the morning.

I deadheaded the roses. They are  fine but we missed the early flush of blooms.

Most plants are OK but there are crispy bits here and there. 

I cleaned up the patio, blowing away all of the hot wind debris and cleaning off the tables and chairs. Tom and I had lunch on the patio. Very pleasant. 

After the service man left and we had the laundry all folded and put away and I caught up on your blogs, I spent some time here reading. 

This evening Tom removed all the fried flowers from the fuchsia basket and hung it back up on the front of the house. 

I walked around the now shady yard looking for new stuff. I found the first Sweet Pea bloom

There are zinnias blooming.
Looks like it's going to be time to start picking raspberries. 
The hummingbirds found the first Corcosmia Lucifer blooms. The hummers were focused, unlike my photo. 
The hardy fuchsia in the front yard that was all wilty had recovered, with a few shots of extra water. 
The tomatoes have grown another foot.
In the greenhouse, which got very, very hot, the peppers, sitting in their saucers of water, grew tall and are setting peppers.

And I have been posting this on my desk top, which is upstairs, where it is still warmer than I like. My sweaty brow is telling me it's time to seek a cooler location downstairs. We'll let the box fans take care of the upstairs so I can sleep in my bed tonight. 

Monday, June 28, 2021


 These geraniums usually live out in front of the house in the sun. Not now. They are in tubs of water in the shade.

The good news is the forecast for today is a high of 109, not 111 or 115 as previously forecast. 

The bad news is that our air conditioner quit. The further bad news is that I just got a call to let me know that the AC repair man won't be coming today as scheduled due to the extreme heat. Well, OK then. 

Box fans are roaring inside wherever I choose to sit. Moving air helps. I have been sleeping, such as it is, on the hide-a-bed downstairs because the upstairs is way too hot for me. Downstairs reached 85 yesterday and I don't like to think of what it will be today. 

We usually get evening cooling and overnight relief, but the low last night was 74, which lasted for a few minutes at 6:00 this morning.

Tom is out right now looking for a filter for our refrigerator ice maker. It quit too. We think it's because we haven't changed the filter in who knows how long. I hope that's all it is.

I also hope that's all that will be going wrong.

A hot wind is blowing. Ordinarily we would call it a breeze, but not today. I sure hope no one is going to get crazy with fireworks.

Many of you live with this summer heat much of the time. We don't and we are not equipped. This is record breaking for us, and it's still June!

It still looks very inviting out there, but it isn't. We will have a lot of heat stressed plants, even with the watering system working. PNW plants aren't used to this heat either. 

We will be OK. We will get through this and have "remember when" stories. It's supposed to be only 90 tomorrow. :-/

Unless this is the new normal. OMG!

Friday, June 25, 2021

Whidbey Vacation

 Several month ago we looked at our Whidbey Island family cabin reservation calendar and decided if we wanted any time there we had better grab the few days left in June. This is a multiple family cabin and is very well used by all of the cousins. We have always made sure that the families with kids and working family members get their week in the summer and we retired folks can use it during the school year and work weeks. 

When we signed up for Wednesday through Sunday of this week, our Sounders Season Tickets were still on hold as the stadium had not yet opened to spectators. That changed and we had two home matches scheduled for this week. We decided to sell our Wednesday tickets and go to Whidbey when we could.  We would come home for the Saturday match.

We arrived late morning on Wednesday to overcast skies, but mild temps. We raised our flags, Sounders this time. By afternoon everything was blue.

We spent some time in the afternoon working in the garden, and then took it easy. At 7:00 we watched the Sounders on TV, where I could sit downstairs in the cabin and be distracted from the soccer match by eagles circling over the lagoon. 

Thursday we kept busy finishing the yard work and doing some cleaning in the kitchen before taking the afternoon to settle into lazy mode. We walked over to the beach in the coolness of the evening and when I saw these wispy clouds, I was pretty sure there was going to be a colorful sunset. 
Mt Rainier lit up as the sun went down.
We stayed outside and then got to visiting with neighbors, when I noticed what was happening in the sky. 
Over the lagoon.
Over the bay.

And then it just got better and better.

Now it's Friday afternoon. We took our yard waste to the recycle station and then did some shopping for things the cabin needed, plus a few groceries. 

The summer garden will begin to dry up now, especially since the weather is heating up. Severe heat warnings are being issued. We are at 84 here on the island, but the cool breeze will moderate that by evening. On the mainland the forecast is for 99 tomorrow and 106 for Sunday, with 109 for Monday. That is way beyond record breaking.

We will be going home tomorrow as planned but not to go to the Sounders match. We sold those tickets too. But we have plants that will need to be rescued, and we do have air conditioning at home. We'll be hunkering down to beat the heat.

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

A Memorial, and a Memorable Bloom

 Some time ago, shortly after my sister Ilene passed away, our friend Jan gave us a gift card to a favorite garden center in order to pick out some kind of a memorial piece for our garden. 

Finally a week ago we went shopping. We are not adding plants to our garden now, so we thought of something decorative. Ilene loved her flowers and the birds and bees and butterflies they attracted. We decided on this glass bowl/birdbath and pedestal.

Then we needed to decide where to put it. I wanted to see it when I sit on the patio. I wanted to protect it as much as possible by discouraging a certain cat from jumping up into it.
I decided it could rise above our collection of succulents and spiny plants, especially right over that wicked Agave. 
I love how it plays happily with all of the colors of the plants and pots.
I don't know it the birds will find or use it, but I can go out to my garden and snip a flower to float in it and exchange a few thoughts with and about my sister. I miss her. 

Then as for that memorable bloom - the Voodoo Lily is blooming, and with that color and that stink, it is unforgettable. 

I counted eight blooms, but there might be more. With the heat we're having they are coming and going fast. I guess that's a good thing, since the smell is like rotten meat,
and they attract flies.
But with that color and exotic shape they are so beautiful. 

I wonder if Ilene would have liked them. 

Saturday, June 19, 2021

Flowers For Father's Day


There are roses on our kitchen table this weekend. They came from our garden. 

June is a month of flower abundance and lushness. Here's some of what is erupting in our garden. 

We got the edges all trimmed again last week.

This bed in the lower yard erupts in June. 

Not all of our flowers are plants, but they are all planted. They are our creations as well. 

The stinky Voodoo lily is ready to open up. 

We'll be up early on Father's Day to try to get the hedge trimming done before it gets too hot. Then we will probably just wilt for the rest of the day. We spent good time with our kids and grandkids recently, so no celebration is planned. 

I hope you are having a good last weekend of Spring. Summer officially starts Sunday evening. Our first day of summer is forecast to be hot. 

Happy Father's Day to all the Dads.