Colorful Imagination

As threatened, I managed to find some colorful life hanging in there on this cold, bleak day.  I’m not above including winter garden greens, or even non-native invasives that were already here, anything for the sake of color and texture.  It’s just part of the challenge, working with what I’ve got, this time of year.  Like a blank slate, the trick is in the imagination.

Day Two

Happy Chanukah Day 2!  Here are the obligatory candle lights from last night, Misu festively imbibing, and a Sephardic dish I made from scratch from dry chickpeas, aromatic Middle Eastern spices and herbs, couscous, tomatoes, etc., served over fresh greens from the garden (and the obligatory leftover latkes).  It’s back to very cold out, so I’m running out of nature photography, but I’m sure I’ll remedy that.


Frying Latke-Ness Monster

Yeah, I know, too many mixed metaphors and puns, just eat it!  I’m a latke frying machine.  These are Sephardic-style, as is my custom.  And instead of sour cream and apple sauce (yech) I made a fresh apple cranberry yogurt dish to offset the latke spices.  Not bad, if I do say so.

Just to be different, now I’m going back in time to this morning’s sunrise being enjoyed by Misu and me.  I figure, if my son in Australia can be 16 hours into the future, and my brother in California is 3 hours behind, time is just a relative concept.  As is apparently the season.

Final Mow

E made these very good egg noodles from scratch.

Then we went outside on this perfect springlike day in December to do our final mowing of the season.  With all the leaves ground up into the green grass, it does look more like spring than fall.

Afterwards, we did a  “Gibbs” out in the shed.  NCIS geeks will know.  Here’s the view from the shed door.  The bare trees are the only thing that give away the fact that it’s December, and almost time to light the first Chanukah light.  I miss having family to do it with, but you make the best of the situation you’ve got.


Balmy Erev Chanukah

After a windy, rainy thunderstorm last night, through which Misu slept blissfully unaware, most of the leaves are finally down, it’s in the mid-50s, and headed for–wait for it–a sunny 70°!  You’d think this was Australia or something.  The sun rose through mist shrouding this pleasant autumn scene.

It’s going to seem strange mowing the grass in December, but it’s perfect conditions for the season finale.  Maybe a little balmy for erev Chanukah, but that’s Tennessee for you!

It’s already tomorrow in Australia, so g’day and Happy Chanukah to Avdi down under!  I wish you light and miracles.

Petting Zoo Envy

It’s a pleasant rainy 61° day for a Cat Standoff.  Joey had the nerve to relax on Misu’s porch, so the two of them were just sitting and howling companionably at each other for a while.  Then Joey happily followed me around the garden, while Misu, disapproving, did her camouflage thing.  I have to edit the photos just to be able to make her out!  See that look of disdain.  Interloper!

Meanwhile, an audience of tiny rodent-dogs were yapping away in the background.  They pretend to be ferocious, but secretly they like me, go figure.  I must be desperate.  Maybe I have petting zoo envy–my son got to take selfies with friendly(?) Aussie critters such as a kangaroo (wallaby?), an emu-looking thing, and a koala.

I’m running out of flowers to take, but there are lots of other subtle colors to be found.




It’s a rainy erev in Tennessee, though not freezing.  Misu’s porch water has ice cubes floating in it.

My youngest grandson turned four years old today in Florida.  My son is on the other side of the world for a couple of weeks, feeling a bit lost and adrift himself.  We’re keeping his place warm for him.

The world is unraveling all around us.  But we are still here, holding down the fort on our island of sorts, keeping the lights on.

Misu is at her guard post.  And there are still flowers.


Record Low

So, weather trivia.  Weather is a nice, safe subject, right?  Except when it’s somehow “political”!

For example, I believe we just beat the record low for this date in Knoxville, 24°, because it dipped to 23° early this morning.  The average low for this date is 44°.   Similarly, the average high is 67°, whereas our high today will be about 45°, more like the average low.

Being Tennessee, of course it will fluctuate back up into the 50s or even 60s over the weekend.  But the fluctuations seem more extreme lately, and not just here, as we all have witnessed.

(By the way, in Sydney, Australia right now it’s in the 60s, headed for ~70°.  Just for the sake of conversation.)

Pretty innocuous stuff, normally, but we are not in normal times, and even the weather reflects the irreversible damage humans are inflicting upon our planet.  We each have our pet world issue, and one of mine is the environment.  Habitable planets are not disposable or recyclable.

But back down to earth.  Normally, right after Misu the Cat eats breakfast, she’s out the door to hunt.  This morning it was so cold, she didn’t even stop to check it out.  She fled to the warmest, coziest corner of the house and hunkered back down.  That was a first.  She’s smarter than some humans.  She recognizes facts when she sees them.