I think she (Stoney) was:
In my house. DEAD IN THE WATER. Meaning, I had:
- no HOME phone
- no CELL phone
- no INTERNET.
- no SATELLITE for my TV.
I hope you are crying blood tears for me, because it was AWFUL. TWO WEEKS. Two weeks with no PHONE, let alone the other stuff. Why, you might be asking? Well, we point to Mr. Stoney on this debacle. He felt we could get a better deal by switching all of that from AT&T to Time Warner (satellite to cable, in other words.) They came and hooked us up two weeks ago, and we hated the cable. First of all, we have a ridiculously large HD tv and they didn't have but four HD channels on their current package for my area. After twenty minutes, I had a headache from all the grainy images. We switched back to AT&T.
Not so fast, Missy! You have to wait for the last company to release your phone number before they can switch the phones back. First off. Second off, I needed a technician to come back and re-hook the cables around in my attic and no one was available until this past Friday. So that's over a week, already with no form of entertainment. Guys, I had to ENJOY MY KIDS. Torture, I tell ya. (Hahaha. We had a lot of fun without TV, who knew?)
But my beloved internet! No worries, I'm a camper-type. I can rough it with the best of them. I figured I'd just use the time to write. Well, guess who saved all of her reference material online? *head desk* So I wrote Mormon missionary porn. \o/ And I gardened (pics coming at the end.) And I read. And I cleaned my house. And I stared at the dead TV and monitor, a shadow of my former self. *single tear*
I finally got my internet turned on, but then it turned out we had a bad modem. GAAAAH!! So I went out and bought one, waiting for AT&T to ship me one, and... Nothing. Still wouldn't work. On the phone for HOURS trying to get online. Finally, their modem came, got it in, installed, powered, and STILL NO INTERNET. More hours on the phone, finally figured out they had our account set to "dial up" (NO.) and got everything back. After... three days of phone calls. *head desk again* BUT I AM BACK, and just late enough to have missed all the wank, all the polygamy hoo-ha (oh my god, I can't even. I'm sick about it.) and whatever else kept you entertained with your delicious, tasty internet access.
Oh!!!! A MASSIVE thing happened while I was away. I HAVE LAID DOWN THE SWORD against my mother in law. No, really. You will not hear me gripe about her again. (Unless she does something completely stupid, I mean, come on. I'm only human.) Why? I'll tell you: SHE GAVE MY KIDS COLLEGE MONEY. As in, two years of a good university's tuition. All three of them. (The Mr. has created bank accounts for them to grow, so that by the time they are ready for college, all four years + should be well paid for, plus any incidentals.) Um, I cried. I won't even lie. She got a massive hug from me, many tears, and my gratitude. (I had to put myself through college because my dad is a tight-wad. Which, hey. I'm proud that I did. But man would it have been easier to have gone to school without working three jobs + 20 credit hours every semester.) So. I heart her tunz.
In conclusion: I hate the stone age when I'm forced to live in it. I want to choose to live that way.
OH!!!! Another thing I forgot. Blood on the Highway played in an Italian film festival last weekend (I know! Italy?!) and they LOVED IT. Huge laughs, clapping and cheering, and people tried to steal the movie posters from the lobby. \o/ Our producer talked to one of the men that ran the festival (say this in a thick accent) and he said, "We love it! It's sleazy, is good!" Hahahaha! We've got a San Antonio film festival in a few weeks, then a big showing with bands and such here in Dallas in mid-July, then off to AFI in Chicago, I believe. I'm not sure on that last one...
Okay, on to the gardening pics, for those interested! I ripped out 10 holly bushes along the side of my house and a large chunk of Bermuda a few weeks ago. I put in loads of wee tinnies. It's in the baby stages, so don't expect lush gorgeousness. (I expect that next year. *G*) Plus, everything up front is going crazy nuts.
Along the wall are mock oranges "Snow White" which is an ever-blooming variety. They smell like a delicate gardenia, and will grow to over 8 feet tall. Mostly evergreen, unless we have a hard winter. This bed is about 10 feet deep. In front of those shrubs in the middle are evergreen shrubs from New Zealand, Hebe. They are loved by hummers and butterflies and put out pink blossoms similar to a buddelia. The leaf is dark green with fucsia underneath, so they don't stand out against the compost currently there. The little pink guys up front are periwinkles, there to anchor the soil until the ajugas grow in.
This is a new plant for me, a black liriope, or monkey grass as it's also called down here. It has baby-pink blossoms, which are insignificant. They turn into black berries that birds like, which is why I have them. Also, I like black plants against silver. They grow in larger clumps, there are three in this space currently.
This is one of my... eight? varieties of day lilies. I'm a big fan. Easy to grow, nothing to do to them except cut the stalks off at the end of the year. Plus, the easiest plant to divide, next to irises.
My little Hope cat sniffing one of my pots. Inside are: cordyline (the center purple spikey plant), lime green sweet potato vine, a purlsane, a purple sweet potato vine (they are TERRIFIC plants and all you need is one of each - you can make babies from them easily) a variegated vinca (makes blue flowers) and a moss rose. I'll take a picture at the end of the summer, and you won't be able to see anything but plant material. They all get big and over-flowy.
My Sally Derg sniffing a plumeria in a noble fashion.
The view from the front corner. 1."sun drops" and the scientific name fails me. I'll edit when I remember. (I love this plant and have one or two in every bed. Easy, drought tolerant like crazy, and blooms over and over.)
2."humming bird bush" and they are all over this when it blooms, red tubular flowers. I can't remember the real name for this, either. Gargh. Self sows, and I have these popping up all over my garden, btw. And I don't mind. See: hummingbirds.
3. Meadow sage, a great, drought tolerant plant, blooms over and over and bees love it.
4. a purple-leafed canna that will bloom in a bright orange. Very striking and easy plant. (Notice a trend?)
5. Russian sage, and I loooove this. Silver, deeply cut leaves, purple blossoms that stay in bloom, and hummingbird moths love this and flock to it at dusk. I have these all over, too, and it self-sows if you let it. (I do.)
6. My big rosemary that moved from the back to the new bed and is quite happy there. It's about 4 1/2 feet tall.
7. Various sedums, a purple one that blooms hot pink, and a limey-yellow that blooms white, plus, to the right are the old standby, Autumn Joy Stonecrop.
8. Curry! I have a thing for silver plants, too. It's evergreen, will self-sow if you leave the blossoms to go to seed.
9. Spanish lavender, the only kind that thrives here as it's native (the Spaniards brought it. One chick on LJ gave me shit a few years ago and told me lavender wasn't native here after I mentioned it was. HEY: TEXAS? 6 Flags? One of them Spanish? Several centuries ago? It's native.)
10. Another day lily, this one an old fashioned that blooms delicate, buttery yellow and smells like a tea rose. Do your day lilies smell? probably not. That's the problem with hybridization, woe. A close up coming up, btw.
11. Texas bluebells! Oh, I love this plant. Blooms from now through November, and I have more to put out. Perennial, gets bigger and better every year. These just started blooming two days ago.
12. Liatris, or Gayfeather. I loooove this. Hot pink blossoms, just starting to bud, and the blossoms open from the bottom to the top. Other varieties are called "firecracker plant" because of that feature. A bulb, they grow larger both in height and width every year. Can divide and separate the bulbs every three years and multiply your crop.
Here's the driveway bed sans bluebonnets. (I got two GALLONS of seed from my little patch. Nice.) That's a red gladiolus about to bloom. The top of that stalk comes to my shoulder. I'm 5' 6". It's... four years old? That stalk appeared over night, no lie.
The view from my front door. Those are day lilies - another variety - with big, tall stalks waiting to bloom. The bushy thing just beyond and to their right is another of those hummingbird bushes. It's a volunteer plant. (Meaning: I didn't plant it, it just showed up.)
The far edge of that front bed against the house. The delicate white flowering plant is anything but delicate. That's a Gaura, and they're terrific. They self sow, and I need to dig up the one in the front and move it as it's covering the walkway. :) Behind it and where the arrow is pointing is that weetiny water feature I put in back in April. It's a little secret spot, now. Which is safer for birds and buns - Darthanne doesn't like thrashing through the flowers. \o/
More of that back bed, shifted left.
1. Russian sage
2. Echinacea, a.k.a. Purple Coneflower. I love this guy. Easy, self sows, pretty and long-lasting flowers. Everybody (creature) loves this guy. Me, too. (Those are all grown from seed, every one you see in my bed.)
3. the Meadow sage, needing to be cut back so it'll keep flowering all summer. It's a vivid indigo when it blooms. (I love blue in the flower bed - it's such an unusual color.)
4. You can't see this well, but when it blooms, it knocks your socks off. This is a Mexican bush sage, and it has long, feather-duster-looking blossoms in ultra-violet. Blooms through frost, which is almost December for us.
5. my bi-colored irises, all done for spring, but will bloom again in July. (Blue and white. It's a thing with me.)
From the bottom of the "rock" bed looking up, those are the Texas bluebells, with a French hollyhock to the right. (Closeups coming.) Sorry for the crappy exposure - the sun was coming up right behind me. The pink plant between the rocks in the background is skullcap, a tough and pretty plant. The spikey blade-leafed plant is crocosmia, with day lilies sending up flower stalks to the far right.
Shifting over a bit to the right, there's the hollyhock. That is one of my FAVORITE flowers of all, and the plant comes and goes every two years, and turns up somewhere new each time. I had no idea any seeds made it to the new bed, so I was very happy to see it turn up. You can see the skullcap better here, and that's the rosemary in the background.
A closeup on the French hollyhock. Isn't that GORGEOUS? Each blossom is the size of a quarter. <3 <3 <3
Crocosmia, "Lucifer." The light was really bright and yellow this morning, but these are BLOOD red. They bloom all summer long, these lovely, delicate tendrils of blossoms. A bulb that naturalized. Excellent for crappy soil, if you see them, BUY THEM. A terrific care-free plant that's beautiful and draws hummers.
My second favorite flower of all time, and I use this guy to introduce kiddos to gardening. A "Bat face" cuphea, and if the wind wasn't blowing, I think you could see the detail better. Two wee pointed ears, a purple face, and the stamens poke out and look like eyes. This is a volunteer plant - it only lives for two or three years, but if you let it go to seed, new babies will crop up. I'm delighted to say I have five wee babies making an attempt in random places in my beds.
A thick stand of day lilies next to the Gaura. I actually don't like this particular one because of the color. It's such a... I don't know, "grandma" color of "blush rose." I'm weird. That's the meadow sage blooming underneath. (It's fading, telling me it's time for a haircut.)
This is that old fashioned day lily. Those blossoms are the size of a man's fist. Gorgeous and smell VOONDERBAH. I love the ruffled edge.
The last of the Easter lilies, the star-gazers are behind, waiting their turn. That stand is about three feet tall.
Here's a red lily that I have NO IDEA where it came from. It just showed up!
Another shot of the Baby Jesus lily - the miracle out of nowhere plant. :D That's a flowering quince in the top left, and the silver plant is a mounding artemesia (wormwood) and is a FANTASTIC ground cover, soft as kittens, and needing no supplemental water.
The first Datura blossom (Angel's trumpet.) This is the toughest plant. Eaten every. single. year by tomato horn worms, and usually devoured to the stems about three times a year. Comes back within DAYS, no lie. And hey - they can chomp on this all they want, just leave the 'maters. These blooms open at dusk and stay open all night, attracting lovely moths. (Say, the Sphinx moth, which comes from.... a tomato horn worm. *g*) This plant can take sun or shade, water or no water, good soil, or crappy soil. This one grows to five feet wide and about four feet tall. If it was out in the open, it would grow to a good eight feet. It's poisonous to grazing animals, so don't plant this near goats or cattle. Or curious toddlers.
That's uh... probably enough damage to your flist. :D