This, that and the other thing. The Princess of darkness edition.

Dr. Death

Thank you all for your positive comments on my butterfly post from Monday. I love and appreciate your accolades.

I’m not kidding…

I really, really need your accolades.

My friend Kelly was asking me a while ago how many butterflies I release each year. I wasn’t sure, but now I’m keeping a spreadsheet because: time and pandemic.

I’ve released 73 in just under a month. A boatload of butters. 

Now, for my Debbie Downer moment.

I had to put on my Jack Kevorkian pants 5 times last week.

I euthanized five butters. Well, technically I think two took their own lives.

They could neither fly nor eat; what’s the point then? 

It happens; disease. Parasites.

BTW; Jack’s pants: So.darn.tight; he was a slim man.

How do you euthanize? Well, there are two methods that I know of. One I can’t fathom.

The method I use is I put them in my fridge for about five minutes to lower the body temperature, then in the freezer, they go.

Don’t ask me how many times someone has opened up the freezer with a butterfly surprise.

WHAT?

I said DON’T ask me. 

I forget they are in there and the next time I, Coach, or a guest goes into the freezer for something: Death.

THEY say that butterflies feel no pain. Hmmm. I don’t know if I believe THEY.

I’ve gotten better at this though. I used to get upset when I had to put one in my beloved appliance, but now it’s a fact of life.

This should probably make my enemies husband nervous.

Who am I kidding? WE know I don’t have enemies.

________________

Let’s get married!

My calendar told me that I was supposed to go wedding dress shopping with Linds and Lolo today.

*sigh*

The nuptials are still planned for the Fall of 2021, but the venue and dress shopping has been postponed for a bit.

DB4DC59C-0141-4D31-9C14-9CECAA56E8A6
The future Mr & Mrs. Cutie Pie.

I think a backyard wedding would suffice. Can you picture the butterfly release?

That is if they’re not all in the freezer.

___________

Housekeeping

I really need to Marie Kondo my closet again; I’ve been putting it off.

BUT, I did start to Marie Kondo my boxes and boxes and boxes of old photos. I’ve arranged to have a good lot of them scanned and saved digitally. This is a big undertaking.

F3899DE1-9296-4C1D-B1A1-3350C2C34ADA_1_201_a

When you are the ONE who continues to live (out of parents, grandparents and siblings) you end up with ALL the photos. Which, I’m thankful for, but I need them in some sort of order for my kids so they won’t be overwhelmed by them like I am.

______

That’s all the death, despair and disappointments I have to share today.

If I say anymore we won’t have anything dreadful to talk about on Friday.

I’m kidding! Happy Humpday!

XOXO

cropped-image-5-6-20-at-7.13-am-4.jpg

__________

My {fence} field of dreams with Kevin Kostner.

Way back in December, when the world was semi-normal we started working on updating much of the landscaping.

I wanted to add in more butterfly-friendly elements. I already had everything set for my monarch, queen, eastern black swallowtails, Giant swallowtails, and gulf fritillary community of flyers, but wanted to add in some more swallowtails to the mix. {why so many links, Suz?}

I have a secret to tell you.

I haven’t shared this with everyone.

I have my very own butterfly guru.

I have only had him since December, but I do adore him. His name is Michael, but I refer to him as my guru. I thought I knew about butterflies but darnittoheck, he knows everything about butterflies.

He told me I needed to plant pipevine; I’d read about the pipevine prior and I did want it, so no arm twisting was involved.

He said if you plant this THEY WILL COME!

Perhaps less ominous-sounding in real life.

He brought over two pipevine plants. Hmmm…they, they look like a regular vine. So far, nothing to wet myself over.

But, can you just plant them in the ground?

Hell to the no.

This is a special vine that needs special equipment; it needed a professionally designed and installed espalier. 

Did you know that there are people on the planet that their job is to design and install these?

Kind of reminds me that I need to blog about the guy who injects our palms; he’s a professional palm injector.

Now that I say that out loud, it sounds dirty.

I digress.

Here are my baby pipevines back in December on their custom espalier.

Then a few months later.

This is the weird bloom it makes.

My eyes have seen a lot of things, but they ain’t seen nothing like that…see how I slipped into my southern drawl? 

Do you remember health class in school? Is that an ovary or a fallopian tube? 

Again, I’m off track.

The pipevine attracts different types of swallowtails depending on where you live; in SW Florida, it attracts the polydamas swallowtail.  Which, I swear I have NEVER seen in person.

Not sure why I have to swear so much but it feels good.

Unknown
Polydamas pic borrowed from UF/IFAS

So, I’ve been training my vine every few days; I move the growing vines around the wires to keep them attached as they grow.

Remember training bras?

This is nothing like that I just wondered if you remembered those.

When I’m out there doing my training, I can hear Michael, aka the Guru, saying “if you plant this, THEY.WILL.COME.”  He doesn’t even look like Kevin Costner, but he’s in my head.

The other day I went out for my training, and guess what.

Wait, did you hear a sudden high pitched squeal around noon Eastern time on Thursday?

IMG_3861
Max is such a poser.
IMG_3858

I have polydamas babies!

I wanted to shout it from the rooftop that I have eggs and larvae thriving on my vine.

But, our roof is really tall, I struggle with vertigo and it’s hot outside, so a blog post will have to suffice.

I was so excited I almost wet my pants. Which really, at this stage isn’t unusual.

BTW: spellcheck wants me to change the name to polygamous. Weirdos. 

So, that was my exciting butterfly news for last week.

Life is good in my butterfly world and that makes all the hard to swallow pills easier.

XOXO

Can you tell me how to get, how to get out of Funky Town?

Can you hear the opening song to Sesame Street and NOT smile?
No. You can’t.



The Coach and I were able to see the sunset via the boat this past weekend.

 

The beaches are closed, but luckily the Gulf of Mexico is still open.
For now. 

I’ve been in a bit of a funk. Not sad; just feeling funky.

I’m itching to get some garden work done; updating my veggie garden. I have a plan but need to execute it and finding a day where my arm isn’t bothering me is a problem.

Also, I’m itching to get to my happy place; my local nursery.
They’re open, but I’m not going because it’s really unnecessary.

I’d like to be acknowledged for actually following the rules.

Should I wait by the mailbox for my acknowledgment gifts?  

If you say I need something for my itching, you’re not wrong.

I started rereading this book this week; It’s been about 20 years since I read it last.

 

I don’t remember the details of the story, but if I kept the book this long, I must’ve really loved it.

 
 
I am staying busy with daily household chores and my butterfly raising. 
Our yard is a flurry of butterflies; lots of different flavors; not just monarchs. 
 
I found a slew of zebra longwing and gulf fritillary larvae in my bed of plumbago the other day and I was so excited I might have had to change my outfit. 
 
 
Their host plant is Passion vine…so, apparently, passion vine found it’s way into this bed without even asking me.
 
THAT fills my little funky heart to the brim. 
 
How are my people on this fine Monday?
Wait, Tuesday?
Yeah, Tuesday.

 

XOXO

 

Captains Log: Day 28 or 399? Garden vlog, puzzle upgrade and a plethora of smokers.

Friday morning I did a little garden vlog. Hold onto your seats, it’s riveting.

Excuse the noise; pool equipment, pool fountain, and air conditioner because Florida.

***

We had a nice, quiet and productive weekend.
Saturday we got our first delivery (insta-cart) from Costco; it went well.
The funny thing is they won’t deliver to our house, but they will deliver to our rental condo.
(zip code snobs)
So, I set up the delivery time and we chilled and waited: (our big outing for the weekend) our delivery guy was right on time.

The Coach was watching a fishing show (also riveting) on TV when I said I was ready to go home with our goods.

He said, “what do you need to get home for?”

I replied slightly embarrassed: “I have a new puzzle.”

Good lord. Send help ASAP. 

We got everything on our list aside from

*ONE THING*

Can you guess what we couldn’t get? 

***

Speaking of puzzles, because apparently, I can’t NOT speak of them. The new one that Linds stumbled upon in Target while getting her essentials is THE. BOMB.COM.

The one I had been struggling with for many weeks, and finally finished, well, it turns out it might have been from the bargain bin at Wally World.

The one Linds picked up? Ummmm…it’s top freaking shelf. Like Nordstroms top shelf.
Wait, does top shelf mean liquor? Well, then it’s way better than Albertsons Vodka; that sort of top-shelf.

I didn’t even know there was a hierarchy in the land of puzzles, but I’m here to tell you, there is one.

The pieces feel different; like they’re made from the remnants of a baby bird’s feathers that have been mixed with the recycling goods from the Taj Mahal.

Wait. That sounds kind of gross. WHO AM I? 

I’m just a girl. Standing in front of a puzzle. Hoping it will help me to solve it. 

 

*ahem, almost a quote from Notting Hill which I watched a few weeks ago and It’s one movie Ernie
can quote*

Such a good RomCom.

***

On Sunday I pressure washed the pool lanai and outside furniture while the Coach put together his newest smoker.

Not only is he a Goldilocks with his chairs/office, but he’s also Goldilocks with his smokers.

He has the HUGE tow-behind one that requires a big azz truck and a small smoker/box but needed a medium-sized one too.

{Small and Medium side by side; the new one looks like a time machine. I suppose it IS a time machine for meat.}

He doesn’t complain about my shoes/plants/garden/skincare addictions, so, would I ever complain about his smoker issue? 
Hell.to.the.no.

So, it’s Monday. Let me check my calendar and see what’s happening this week.

Well, it looks like I’m TOTALLY open if anyone wants to get together.

Or not.

Have a good one my people.
XO

I’m certified and I’m finished.

My gardens are officially certified.
And you thought I was just certifiable.

Notice my Monarch model; he approved the signage.

Bona-fide.
Authorized.
To be prized.
I’m rambling here.

I wish I could ditch the electrical boxes and irrigation stuff off the walls, but electricity and irrigation are essential to me.
Also, this is the side of our house, not the front. The front is prettier. But don’t tell the sides and back; they’ve never met.

I’m sure the signs will lure even more butterflies to my lair.

I really try to keep my posts short and sweet so I don’t lose anyone, but I never know where exactly to stop.

Stop here? 

Maybe stop here?

Nope.more.to.chatter.about

The puzzle is finished.

Can I stop talking about that damn puzzle already? 
No. I can not.

I know, you were probably not sleeping a minute wondering how I was doing with it; it’s finally done and yes, I was missing two pieces. MAX!!

I complained to Linds that it was hard to do because my right arm hurt so much.

Linds: Do it with your left arm.

Why do my children use logic against me?

When I was finished, I wrote a note on the box for my future self or someone else’s future self that two pieces are missing and I sharpied the spots on the box.

If my arm felt better, I’d pat myself on the back for that.

Actually, my arm is feeling a bit better. Thank you all for your wonderful advice; it’s appreciated.
Also, icing it a few times a day has been awesome and something I didn’t think to do before. *duhh*
It’s no picnic being me.

NOW, I’m done.

Kidding.

Does anyone have plans for the weekend?

Suzanne, that was cruel and uncalled for.

Oh, wait.
One more thing.

Our marina has opened back up (with VERY limited contact) so the Coach is excited to get on his boat and go fishing tomorrow. He’s been working a lot and being home with me a lot.
He needs some fun because I can only entertain him so much; that wasn’t a part of our vows.

I DO wish you all a nice weekend doing something you enjoy with people that you can semi-stand being around.
I consider myself fortunate in that way.
I never thought to ask my husband how he felt about it.
Probably just as well…

Bee good
Bee silly
Bee well

XOXO

butterfly lessons and denial

When I was vlogging about my obsession, need, want of the Giant Swallowtails, I assumed everyone knew what they were. Here is what they look like, and they really are large compared to other butterflies.
You know size doesn’t matter, big, small, tall, thin, they’re all beautiful. That was me remembering that butterflies might read this and have body issues. 

Underside of the Giant.

And when they want to hide from the butterfly po-po.

Topside of the Giant

It’s like they are two different critters when sitting as opposed to flying.
Giant swallowtail butterfly images borrowed from here.  They love citrus trees/plants.

Aren’t they gorgeous?

I’ve had some luck with the Eastern black swallowtail; they love parsley, dill, and fennel, which I have growing in the garden.

This boy was released a few weeks ago:

I have to be more diligent in collecting the baby larvae of these because if not, the birds eat them before I can save them.

The birds act like I don’t have food for them; the feeder is always full and still, they want to eat caterpillars. Pretty freaking rude if you ask me.

I’ve released about 25 monarchs this week and I’m going to be forced to slow down because my milkweed can’t grow fast enough with the last batch or four of caterpillars.

I’ve got the whole world in my hand

The world might be falling apart, but here is Suz running around the yard playing with butterflies.
Denial is my favorite place to be. Oh, and Home…home and denial are my favorite places.

Any plans for the weekend? A concert? Shopping at the mall? Moving from the bed to the couch? 
XOXO

She Vlogs again; I finally got what I wanted. Spoiler alert, it’s not a baby dolphin. This time

What day are we on for quarantine? 6, 7, 58? 


I’m so thankful for a large yard that I can wander around to get some fresh air; it makes me less sassy. Can you imagine? 

When I was a kid, both my Dad and his Dad were always (when not working) in the yard; planting, trimming, watering, growing stuff.

I always thought that was just what old people do.

And.here.I.am. 

Happy Tuesday.
So, tacos tonight? 

{virtual} XOXO