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To The Elks For Girls Night Out!

It’s OK to call me pudgy!

We were up and moving at 6:00 am, heading to the yard with our coffee cups in hand.  The cup of coffee keeps us warm until the effort to trim the garden kicks in, and then we are plenty warm.  Sometimes, we shed our robes and garden in our jammies.

Whenever Mary wears this particular print, it consistently scares the varmints away!

Coffee at 6:15 am!

The old man takes his coffee hot and black, sometimes with milk if he is in a hurry.  This morning, we spent thirty minutes planning out the day!

It takes me until 6:20 am to be able to smile!

Notice Mary’s “weedmobile” is always nice and empty!    Mary can move this around the yard with ease.

I used to own a wheelbarrow full of four-leaf clovers… But then I realized I really shouldn’t push my luck.

Freshly emptied, weeds are terrified when they see this coming their way!

On the other hand, Paul’s weedmobile is always overflowing and takes about six wheelbarrow loads to fill the 90-gallon container.

Another load goes to the trash!

The lonely tomato, the only one on the plant!  He is looking good and will likely grace our dinner table this evening.

Only about thirty tomatoes remain!

The basil has gone berserk this year!  The rich history of basil goes back thousands of years, and the sweet herb is used in just about every culture in the Eastern, and Western world.

Did You Know?

  1. An annual (new seeds have to be sown every year), basil is in the mint family, and the main source is Egypt, with the United States being second.
  2. There are between 50 and 150 varieties of basil, though most are classified as sweet basil.
  3. Ancient cultures had many superstitions about basil, including that a leaf would turn into a scorpion if left under a pot for a period of time.
  4. The word “basil” means kingly or godly in Greek, and the ancient Greeks believed the plant would grow only if curses were screamed while sowing the seeds.
  5. The Krishna & Vishnu hold basil sacred & it is believed that a house surrounded by it is blessed. Every good Hindu goes to rest with a basil leaf on their breast.
  6. Beyond a favorite herb in so many cuisines, basil is also said to help aid digestion, remedy fevers, and encourage a merry heart.

We have mountains of basil in the beds!

These were full to the brim with tomatoes, but as they petered out, we replaced them with lettuce and beets!  The watering system lifts out easily when we need to rototill the next year’s soil and amendments into the bed.

The drip heads are movable to adapt to next season’s crop needs.

The melons are ripening fast, and they taste incredibly sweet, like eating sugar. One whole melon contains about 180 calories! These melons are named after Cantalupo, a town in Italy where they were first cultivated in the 1700s. They usually bloom from July to September, and their yellow flowers attract honeybees for pollination. After planting, it takes about 90 days for the fruit to develop.

Next week, fresh cantaloupes for breakfast every day!

As we head to the house, we pass by our little grapefruit tree and our lemon tree.

Get big little guys; pink grapefruit.

We had hoped to invite a Villa Park friend to join us at the Elks, but we knew she would come up with another lame excuse not to come. Her constant excuses have become too much for us to handle, so we have decided to go by ourselves again. Instead, our neighbor, Jeff, with genuine medical issues, will join us.

Scout had a grooming appointment at the salon. We dropped him off at 11:00 am, and he will be prancing around afterward, expecting great amounts of praise about his handsomeness.  He is hard to live with after these appointments!

We went to the Elks expecting to see everyone, and no one showed up.  Bill Capps came in just after noon; he had been fighting with the old bank where the Elks did business.  We enjoyed chili and shared a salad.

I bought ten Santa Ana Elks challenge coins.  A challenge coin is a small coin or medallion bearing an organization’s insignia or emblem and carried by the organization’s members. Traditionally, they might be given to prove membership when asked and to enhance morale. They are also collected by service members and law enforcement personnel.  At the Elks, you slap down a coin, and if the person being slapped doesn’t have a coin in return, they buy a drink!

Ronnie “slaps” a new member!

After the Elks, Mary insisted that I buy some new luggage as my old one was not presentable (she was embarrassed when I used a gunnysack on the last trip). She bought me a fantastic suit bag and a medium-sized suitcase that matches the ones she purchased last year. As a result, we are color-coordinated now, and I have agreed to dispose of the gunnysacks and cardboard boxes I have been using.

We dropped by the Z’s to check out everything.  All was well!  The Z’s are going to the riverboat phase of their adventure tomorrow.

The wildflowers are still wild!

We picked up Scout, and as expected, he pranced, swaggered, sashayed, strolled, and traipsed from the salon to the car, complete with a Cheshire Cat smile! It’s going to be a long evening.

“I am pretty, I am pretty!”

After getting back home, we brought two key lime pies to our neighbor Jeff and his friend who was visiting. We made plans to return at 4:00 p.m.  I told them a joke:

A building contracter hires an Englishman, an Irishman, and a Chinaman. He gathers them all in his office and tells each of them their jobs.

The Englishman to shovel a pile of sand. The Irishman has to take the sand in the wheelbarrow to the truck. The Chinaman is in charge of supplies.

The boss comes back two hours later and he sees the Englishman and the Irishman having a cup of tea. ”So have you done the work then?” he asks.

The workers both shake their heads and tell him that the Chinaman didn’t give them a shovel or a wheelbarrow. The boss is infuriated by this and asks the workers if they have seen the Chinaman, they tell him they thought they saw him going toward the truck.

So the boss sets out towards the truck and just as he is getting close to the truck the Chinaman jumps out from behind a wall and yells, “SUPPLIES!”

After our visit, we returned to our place at 5:30 p.m. for dinner. Mary had come up with a great plan and brought along the remaining fried chicken drumsticks. We devoured eight of them while watching two movies.

At 10:00 pm we declared victory and headed for bed.  It has been a wonderful day!

I love you with all my heart!

About Paul

Just an old retired guy trying to finish out my last years on this planet. I lost my best friend and wife in early 2020. I was blessed again by reconnecting with Dr. Mary Côté, a long-time friend. Mary and I got married July 28th, 2021, and are enjoying life together and plan to spend the rest of our lives being a blessing to our friends and family.
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