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09 May 2019 @ 02:16 pm
Weekend update  
This is actually for last weekend, even though the new one is nearly here...

The big news was being voted Co-Winner of LJ Idol for the Literary Prize Fight mini-season. It still hardly seems real. Sonreir and I are joining a terrifically talented and humbling group of people who have won past rounds, and I'm in awe of all of them. :O

In lesser news, HalfshellHusband and I haven't been out on a weekend date in ages. I've spent the last 5-6 weeks writing Idol entries all weekend (as did HSH, up until 2 weeks ago), and just haven't had the time. Last Saturday, I couldn't commit to anything in case there was another write-off and I had to spend the evening on that!

What I DID do last weekend, besides nearly jump-start an ulcer over the Idol vode, was yard work. We have a TON of bulbs in our yard that the previous owner planted. Most are paperwhites, which flower in the winter. Afterward, the leaves keep growing and growing until they flop over onto the lawn or other plants and block out their sunlight and prevent them from getting watered by the sprinklers. \o?

I usually cut them back around March, and then pull off the dead leaves in June or so. Thanks to Idol and the recurring weekends of late rain that went on forEVER, I didn't start in on that first chore until the end of April. The leaves are about 20" now, so you really have to wrestle with them just to trim them. My equipment for this chore is a cheap serrated knife and a pair of rubber gloves, because these things slime when you cut them. God, do they ever slime. And after about 15 minutes, that sap turns sticky—so you'll be trying to remove weeds between the plants, and then you can't shake the weeds off the gloves. Ook.

I cut back everything along the walkway (the most crucial sprinkler area) two weeks ago, then last weekend I started on the huge circle in the middle of the lawn. 2 1/2 hours of work, and I only finished 3/4ths of it!

I decided last year that I was going to dig up and remove virtually all the paperwhites (and the gazillion clumps of white gladiola bulbs in other parts of the front yard). First, because all the flowers are white, and they're not worth the grief. If they were daffodils, maybe, but no. But what really drove that decision was that these bulbs are what's keeping us from putting down landscape fabric and groundcover. Instead, we have bare dirt everywhere and have to battle epic weeds all year long. I'm sick of it.

Somehow, though, I didn't get that done. Last spring, I removed semi-rotted roots from long-dead trees, added back good dirt, and then put in new plants. Some of which are now dead. :O By the time I was done with that, all of the paperwhite leaves were gone, which makes it hard to find the bulbs. I did dig some of them up (and some gladiolas, too) while planting new things, but there are SO many more to go. I only have about 4-6 weeks left before the leaves are gone again, during which time we'll be gone Memorial Day weekend and then again in Mid-June for our oldest's college graduation. My chances of getting much done are not looking good!

Plus, we fianlly visited the nursery last weekend and got some new plants that need to go in. Not as many as I'd hoped—what's available really varies, even though you definitely want to plant everything no later than... now. SOOOoooooo...

Oh hey, remember my talking about random-juke-box-brain last week? I woke up Monday morning with Johnny Cash's "Ring of Fire" in my head for no good reason (I'm not really a fan, and I've probably heard it fewer than 10 times). It was on repeat until something HalfshellHusband said kicked off "Start It Up," a song that is high on my Hate list and contains at least 50% more Jagger-mouth than virtually any other Stones song. So I immediately inflicted it on HSH, out of revenge. I mean, it was only fair, right? :O

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Muriellemurielle on May 9th, 2019 11:42 pm (UTC)
Yay, on your win and I loved that you and Sonrier shared the top-title as you were both so deserving.

That's a lot of yard work! (Pats you on the back!)

So now it's time to get out on a date with your HSH! ;-)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 10th, 2019 01:33 am (UTC)
It's a lot of work, and there's SO much more. And? We pay a gardener. But I still wind up doing a lot. I don't think he realized those bulbs needed to be cut back, and there are SO many of them. But... we don't want any lilies or other plants with blades cut back by mistake. Our daughter did that one year. :O

We love movie dates, and the current movies are so disappointing! It's the time of year, and the fact that we're not huge Avengers fans (or other superheroes).

We would do more dinner dates, but I'm always watching my weight and HSH is always watching his sodium! So once in a while, but we prefer to combine them with movie outings. :)
jake67jakejake67jake on May 10th, 2019 04:43 am (UTC)

Wait. HSH was a competitor on Idol?

The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 10th, 2019 05:34 am (UTC)
Yes! HSH was rayaso.

He doesn't have any outside influence, as nobody in RL knows about his journal apart from me, and he only ever posts Idol stories. But he made it to #5 this last round, just based on votes from readers and other writers. I think that's amazing!
jake67jake: pic#126407358jake67jake on May 10th, 2019 06:34 pm (UTC)

WOW!!! I *loved* his stories! :) ... y’all kinda suck that two in the same family are so talented!! *jealous* *kinda*

oxymoron67oxymoron67 on May 11th, 2019 01:49 am (UTC)

You totally rocked it out this season.

Also, I always have songs running through my head. It's not as distracting as it used to be, usually.

Sometimes, though...
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 11th, 2019 06:29 am (UTC)
Thank you!

The random song thing can be innocuous or obnoxious, depending on whether you like the song or not.

But I definitely remember you battling with the distraction issue during one of your graduate classes. :D
passing_through: ack Justinpassing_through on May 12th, 2019 11:43 pm (UTC)
My goodness, your yard is a lot of work!

My brother has a raised bed in his front yard that he's always fretting over. He plants things, they die, he plants again, some live, some die. So this year he had the idea to do groundcover and then while he and his wife were discussing it he hit upon the idea of planting mint (to keep out all of the pests. He also uses it in his garden.) and basil and sage and rosemary. He's going to fill his front bed with spices instead of flowers or shrubs. I'm anxious to see how it works out.

Oh, The Rolling Stones. In 1981 I was going to college in Denton and they came to play the Cotton Bowl with ZZ Top and The Fabulous Thunderbirds and a group of my friends and I cut classes one day to stand in line to get tickets and all of us went to the concert and the funny part is I don't really like the Stones. I think there's one song I like and I can't think of the name of it right now (that's how much I like it :D). I remember parts of the concert but what really stands out is the guy seated about four rows behind us that would scream out "rock and roll!" every fifteen minutes or so while we were waiting for the concert to start. If I had to guess I'd say chemical substances were involved :D
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on May 13th, 2019 06:08 pm (UTC)
The yard is horrifying. It's beautiful, but it's way too much work. It's been a headache ever since we moved in 20 years ago.

We have a gardener again, now that the boy is at college and we need regular mowing (it's too tiring for HalfshellHusband, and it takes more time than I have). He also trims the hedges (lots of those!), does pruning when requested, handles the roses when requested. But things like cutting back those paperwhites? Again-- you have to remember to ask. And our method of contacting him is to leave notes on the gate on his servicing day. Meanwhile, things are dying...

The weeding is epic, and he only sprays the weeds-- I so wind up doing that too, when they get to be too much. Hence the desire to really reduce the opportunity for weeds! But this is all a solo effort-- HSH's heart issues make it hard for him to do much. He has to budget his energy and stamina, and a lot just falls by the wayside. :(

The guy at that Stones' concert sounds really annoying, and also really typical for a rock concert!

I suspect the Stones song you like is probably one of the older ones, like "Satisfaction," or "Paint It Black", or "Brown Sugar", or "Jumpin' Jack Flash", or "Nineteenth Nervous BReakdown" or something. Those are all ones I like. But the late 70s onward? Kill.Me.Now. :O