Wacky Weather, Wacky Week Altogether

Folks, I've got to admit it.  I've been one of the worst complainers about the long, cold Winter we had.  Snow after snow after snow blanketed the Piedmont, and it got to be old after the first couple of them.  Would Spring ever arrive?

Uh...yeah.

I must have blinked, because we seem to have gone from Winter right into Summer...forget Spring.  We hit 96 here today (a record high)...warmer than it was in Phoenix, AZ, which is always my test of whether it's hot here...or anywhere, for that matter.  The tree pollen count is so high that they can't even chart the number in a graph without some distortion on TV.  It feels like we are all going to choke on the yellow dust that covers everything in sight.  Cough, cough...wheeze, wheeze...pass the Allegra-D, please.

N/M/E asked me if I'd taken a photo (above, left) of the pink dogwood that grows in front of our front porch yet...that I'd better do it quickly, 'cause it might not have any flowers on it at all tomorrow.  One day is had tiny buds...the next day, it had beautiful pink blossoms...and then the leaves popped out overnight.  Yikes!  Everything seems to be happening so fast.  All the daffodils are bloomed and gone...and this morning, I noticed both daylily buds forming and some iris blossoms about to open.  Daylilies?  Iris?  The first week of April??  How odd...

Supposedly, we've got another day of high heat before we get some relief...both in lower temps and some much needed cleansing rains.  Maybe that will wash the pollen dust away by the weekend.

Taking a break from the long To Do list of chores to get ready for the upcoming weekend Birthday Celebration for N/M/E, I took advantage of the glorious sunny day and worked outside most of Monday, repotting some plants that survived the winter indoors.  My lemon tree...started from saved seed a few years ago in MO...had outgrown the confines of its pot last year, but I just didn't have energy last Fall.  Ditto the beautiful Mandevilla vine that Realtor Sue sent us as a housewarming gift...poor thing, it never made it out of the plastic "grower's" pot that it came to us in...as well as a hearty bunch of chives that have miraculously survived two winters and a move. Now, they are all hap-hap-happy out on the deck, in new soil and pots.  I also potted up some herbs (oregano, parsley, rosemary, lavender, and basil) and a Super Sweet 100 Cherry Tomato for the deck garden. 

I took a short cut on the flowers for the porches this year:  I got "already potted" groupings of flowers called Container Replacements from Lowe's...you just pop them in your pots and add water.  I did sneak in some beautiful purple petunias to the white geranium and spiky green foliage (is it artemisia?) of one.  I also found some pretty potted-up coreopsis at Walmart which followed me home and are now gracing the front steps.  Those last ones did get a make-over when I added three Hot Pink vincas to each of the bright yellow coreopsis pots...just like we had read about doing in the gardening section of the paper on Sunday.  Like I said about the weather...instant Summer!

Most of this dolling-up of the homeplace is in preparation of our guests for N/M/E's 90th Birthday celebration this Saturday.  Fingers crossed...toes, too...that we can make it happen.  Health issues have sprung up just like Summer weeds...we get one managed and along comes another one.  I've been battling a nasty virus that just won't let go...I was down for the count for about a week...then, I think I've got it licked, but back comes the cough.  And, now N/M/E has developed this odd foot malady of sharp, stabbing heal pain (akin to her gout? not sure...) that kept her from joining us at Easter services at Covenant UMC and then the yummy buffet at the Proxity Hotel in Greensboro.  Speaking of being "dolled-up," check out Mr. T in his Easter finery.  (What you can't tell in that photo to the right is just how much yellow pollen dust is coating that black courtesy car.)

And, the health issues are not just for us humans either.  Duchess got to come home today following her surgery on Monday to remove 7 cysts, two of which had ruptured, one being infected...that's the one we've been trying to deal with for more than a month now.  She was a real trooper, Dr. Heidi said...amazing actually.  For a 10-year-old dog "with a good bit of extra padding," she came through the 2-plus hour surgery with flying colors.  No fever...none, even after the recovery period.  Now, it's all about the healing.  They sent her home in this flexible E-collar thingie (pic to the left; see all her shaved patches, one of which is holding Elmo's interest) to keep her from tearing out her stitches, but that lasted about 20 minutes.  Mr. T removed it because he said she looked miserable...and because it was driving Gus nuts to see her in the thing.  Woo woo!  Still and all, we are ever so happy to have her home and feeling better.  Having had two dogs with major health problems in two months is, well, two too many.  Hopefully, things will settle down for them...and for us.

Time to get to bed for the night.  Lots to do on the To Do List tomorrow!

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