Saturday, January 23, 2010

Hark and Herald and, yeah, that.

I cannot believe it's been almost a month since I posted last. What sink hole have I fallen into? Isn't it still November? Like, before Thanksgiving? No? Wow.

What makes the holidays especially challenging is this--there's Thanksgiving; a week later is our anniversary; 3 weeks after that is Christmas, and a week after that is my birthday. Yeah, I know--it's the All About Me season!!! (or at least I try to make it that way...)

Anyway, this is the perfect drink--a grey goose pomegranate martini. On my birthday. THE perfect way to celebrate the new year and my successfully living through another year. I'm not getting older, I'm just getting better.

While the photo above isn't the best, at least it's proof I have been doing something creative. Not like trying to brush Lillie's hair and put a cute clip for her bangs--talking about needing to be creative. Like asking a gerbil to get off her wheel long enough so I can play with her hair. And I don't know where she gets not wanting to brush her hair (note to self-brush hair before getting it cut today.)
I made a dozen mini-domino Day of the Dead charms. They're tiny--about 1"x 1/2". I used paper from The Crafty Chica, stickles, and lots of diamond glaze. Lots of fun to make and wear. I like the fact they're not too delicate but still artsy.

While walking around the yard at an in-town property, I noticed cleavers growing all over the back yard area. Several years ago when I went through initial herbalist training, I fell in love with this herb that grows shyly (but prolifically) in fertile soils. It and sweet woodruff are the only two plants that I've seen that have leaves that grow in whorls around the stem. While it's tough to get sweet woodruff to grow around here (it's a bit snarky about our arid climate, limestoney soil, and summer heat), cleavers is a welcome cool weather friend. The leaves are a bit clingy--when they are walked through or if you just brush your fingers against the back of a leaf, sticky hairs will aid in it coming with you--a survival tactic to ensure its seeds are spread far and wide.
But for now, she quietly lives in the side yard and I can't help but visit her daily--who can resist those green green whorls of energy?

While admiring the cleavers, I kept hearing things hitting the roof, cars, and ground. Not big things, just little 'tinks'. I looked up and to my delight, a flock of cedar waxwings were joyfully eating the berries from a ligustrum tree.
Devilishly handsome birds, they're only here for the winter, eating all kinds of berries including the ones on our local 'cedar' trees. The really fascinating thing about these guys are the small red drops of 'wax' at the ends of specific wing feathers and bright yellow tips on their tail feathers. That with their pointed crests and black masks make them a winter favorite of mine. They travel in large groups and emit a high pitched 'wee' sound as they travel. I've always likened their movements to the cartoon The Jetsons as they traveled their skyward highways in clusters.

The Monterrey oak is casting its leaves to the wind and the temperature outside is inching towards 70. Cedar fever (serious allergic reaction to the cedar trees pollinating this part of the earth) is in full snotty swing. Ahhhh winter in south central Texas. Cheers all. Happy year!!