Day 196: Postcards from Canada, Also the Egg Woman

These actually arrived yesterday but I was busy making viral a TikTok recipe and entertaining so I didn’t see the envelope containing a series of postcards of remarkable women with parts of a serial letter written on each. Who but our dear friend Helen would be so creative?

Helen, if you read this, it was an absolute delight to receive your postcards. I was able to read every word!


The other delight of the day was an email exchange with the Egg Man’s wife. She’s having some issues with her Facebook page for the farm and I offered to help her set up a blog for her photos. She wanted to see an example of WordPress so I sent her here where she found the blog post about her husband and the pumpkin and seemed delighted.

I am glad she enjoyed the post. I meant to send it to her after I wrote it, but forgot.

Day 195: Andrew, Alex, and Unnifetapasta

Earlier in the week I noticed internet articles and Instagram posts about a baked feta pasta recipe that was going viral on TikTok. I thought, “I like feta, I like tomatoes and I like pasta, therefore I will like this.”

I bought way too much feta and way to many grape tomatoes and asked Alex in a text if she and Andrew would like to come over for dinner soon to try this out. Either way I was planning on making it.

Andrew and Alex were able to come to dinner on Friday so I made it.

It was good, but not over the top good like I’d expected. Andrew said it was “solid” and Alex said it was good. Dean said it was good, but slightly dry (I didn’t add pasta water).

No matter, at least I saw Andrew and Alex again.

I took no photographs. The one at the top was stolen from the Internet.

Here’s the original recipe (pre-TikTok) and here’s the recipe I followed (although I added two small shallots and used jarred Calabrian peppers instead of the chopped chile peppers).

Day 194: My Pandemic Plant

Shortly before we were asked to be cautious and only go out when necessary I purchased a “Shamrock” plant (Oxalis regnellii) at our local Fresh Market. I’d bought them before but always managed to forget about them after St. Patrick’s day. Surprisingly the one I bought last year is still alive — not thriving — but alive and flowering. I took some photos of it with my good camera today.

Days 184 – 193: Mostly Plants

A couple of weeks ago we met with a landscaper and his partner to discuss some plants for our backyard. It’s pretty much been an eyesore for years and I decided that I didn’t want to just add a few plants, but really re-do the yard. Pull up the ivy and vinca, plant native wildlife-attracting shrubs and perennials. We’ve been throwing ideas back and forth with the landscapers and have settled on some exciting-to-me plants:

  • Skip Laurels along the back to hide our neighbor’s driveway and guesthouse-office
  • Beautyberry bushes along the other neighbor’s fence along with some other, yet to be decided native perennials
  • Native shade-loving plants around the deck:
    • goldenrod
    • bleeding hearts
    • wood asters
    • two types of ferns
  • Woodsy plants in the deep shade such as jack-in-the-pulpit, maybe some trillium
  • I also want to plant a spicebush on the side of the house

The folks have done quite a bit of work — mostly removing invasive ivy and vinca. They also took down a wire fence between our yard and the backdoor neighbor. It looks bare now, but at some point it will be beautiful.

I really love my houseplants. When I look at them my heart soars. I thought I was a houseplant killer, but these are doing well. Of course they are pretty easy to keep alive, but still.

Other delights of the past several days:

  • Snowdrops were discovered under some ivy and pachysandra — a remnant of a fairy garden Clare and I tried to create
  • The juncos are still around and enjoying the thistle seed
  • I’ve figured out where to put the bird feeder when the garden is done
  • I didn’t kill the wintersweet (whew!)