Last Thursday I took my sister Lori & her wife Ellen to Symphony Hall to listen to the Indigo Girls. It was a great concert.
The first time I ever heard the Indigo Girls play & sing was at Little Five Points Pub in the late 1980s and I’ve been a fan ever since. I remember taking some out-of-town friends who were visiting to the Pub one night. The Indigo Girls were singing and the place was packed. It was a celebration of sorts because the Indigo Girls had just signed their first big record deal and everyone in the bar was happy, joyous and rocking along to the tunes.
It was touch and go there for a couple of months, but those days are behind us now.
He’s been cancer free for a year and a half, has gained back most of the weight he lost, and he’s a very happy boy. He has adjusted well to not having a lower jaw line (his tongue doesn’t hang out of his mouth as the vet expected) and he enjoys his pureed food – he even has his own blender that is dedicated to the task.
The summer heat continues, but spiders spin their intricate webs, hummingbirds urgently swarm porch feeders, soon they depart on their perilous southern journey, reds and oranges appear in the underbrush. The shortening days signal the change that is coming, and the spider lilies are blooming again.
Last November I was inspired by an article I read to try my hand at growing some African Violets. Over the years I’ve tried to grow these lovely plants but I had never been successful. Every plant I tried to grow eventually died a slow withering death. So several years ago I gave up. I swore them off forever.
But the article inspired me to try again. The author made it sound so easy. I went to a couple of local stores to buy a few African Violets, but none of the stores had them. So I went online and ordered a sample pack of 12 different African Violet leaves from a grower on Etsy. When the sample pack arrived I planted each leaf in a plastic dixie cup, placed the whole bunch of planted leaves in two small plastic tubs and set them on my kitchen counter under the under-counter fluorescent light. (You’ll see 20 leaves in the photos below because the seller sent me a few duplicates).
I watered them well and snapped the lids on the tubs. The tubs provided a nice, moist terrarium-like environment for the plants and because both the tub and the lid are translucent, the plants got plenty of light.
I left the fluorescent light on 24/7 and every couple of weeks I opened up the tubs to check the progress. For the first couple of months I didn’t see much of anything and so was skeptical that my effort would be successful.
Then, around the middle of March I saw some babies emerging from the soil around a few of the leaves.
A few weeks later, there were more babies and even a bloom!
By mid-April all the leaves had sprouted babies. After several weeks I transplanted most of the babies into one inch pots. Many leaves yielded more than one plant.
In June they were all growing and flourishing (I only lost one baby plant).
A few weeks ago I repotted the larger plants into larger pots (the picture below shows less than half of my plants).
You can see that some of the plants have started blooming and more buds are popping up every day. I’ve now got over 40 African Violets and three of the original leaves are still in dixie cups perhaps producing more baby plants.
The Douglas County Chamber Singers resumed weekly practices a few weeks ago to prepare for the 2019/2020 concert season. I missed singing in the very first concert, but joined the group in time to sing in the spring concert. I can’t believe I’ve been singing with this wonderful group for 17 years!
This season, we’ve got three concerts scheduled:
Organ Concert, First United Methodist Church of Douglasville, October 6, 2019 at 6:00 pm Last year the Methodist Church (where we rehearse and where most of our concerts are performed) ran a donation drive to collect money to refurbish its lovely pipe organ. On October 6th we’ll join the church choir, in singing some lovely pieces that feature and celebrate the church’s newly refurbished organ.
Annual Christmas Concert, First United Methodist Church of Douglasville,
Bert is doing very well and so far he remains cancer free.
I’m still blending his food up to a pea soup texture and I’ve started him on cans of kitten food to help him gain back some of the weight he lost. He really loves the kitten smoothies I blend for him every day and I think he’s already gained a little weight back.
This Sunday is Mothers Day and for the last 30 years, I have been without my mother. For several years after my Mother died, I could barely go near a card store in the month before Mothers Day. If I walked by the card section of a store, my throat would start to close up, my heart would start beating hard as I felt my eyes welling up with tears. I would often have to run out of the store, experiencing some kind of panic attack.
Now, I just avoid card stores and the card aisles of stores most of the time, but the other day, while at Walmart, I cut through the card aisle to get across to the grocery section of the store. I wasn’t thinking about Mothers Day, and there they were….rows of Mothers Day cards. I felt a tug at my heart and an overwhelming flood of grief. Yes, it’s been 30 years, but I’ve never stopped missing her, and I hope I never do, for if I stopped feeling that grief, then I will feel like I have lost her forever.
A few years ago, I participated in a writers’ workshop. Every day, I would receive an email that laid out the topic of the day’s writing. One of the assignments was to write about a day in time I would like to return to and I wrote an essay about my last trip to Jekyll Island with my Mother. The details of the essay are correct. I was pleased with how the essay turned out and I’d like to share it with you in memory of my Mom this Mothers Day. You can read it here (entitled, “A Room With a View”).