Summer stories

It’s another hot one in D.C. today. Sweltering and sticky. Watering the front and back yards takes 10 trips with the glass bowl I’ve been using. I’m thinking of exploring an urban rain barrel idea – a sort of rain barrel made for smaller apartments or homes, city life. Where would be the best place to put it? What kind of container? And how to get the rain water out and onto your plants.

Speaking of hot, I painted my nails yesterday and was reminded of a story from when I spent a summer in southern France and was an English-speaking au pair for an adorable French 2-year-old named Valentine. That summer, I lived in flip flops per usual. My toenails were painted red, per usual. And the paint was often chipping so just a little blotch was left on each nail. I would hate to have to say per usual here, but in the spirit of being truthful …

The last week I spent in Allauch, I decided to re-do my toenails. When I showed my tiny, curly haired charge, who was used to my worn-out pedicures, she squatted down all the way to peer at my fresh toenails. She was upset.

“Non!,” she said. And in French:

“You put a lot. You’re supposed to put just a little bit!”

She stood up and raised her thumb and index finger to her face, an inch apart, for emphasis. Guess this girl can never go to beauty school. And it’s all my fault.

Valentine was full of advice based on what she thought she knew. It was so sweet to see how sincerely she considered everything. Much like the first time I stepped into her pool to catch her when she jumped in. Over and over again she told me in French to, “Be careful of my heart.” I didn’t understand until she pointed at the heart I have tattooed on my foot. She was worried about it getting wet.

In other news, the yard is looking fantastic after Trev put some mulch down and bought a wonderful pink flower for the upper corner.

I originally had a moonflower that I had started from seed here. But after a quick Google search revealed the moonflowers like to climb and are GORGEOUS, I moved the moonflower to the fence so it would be the first thing evening passerby would see.
I originally had a moonflower that I had started from seed here. But after a quick Google search revealed the moonflowers like to climb and are GORGEOUS, I moved the moonflower to the fence so it would be the first thing evening passerby would see.
The moonflower will have large white flowers. It blooms in the evenings. I chose this spot so it could climb the fence. I chose the moonflower seeds because when I was a little girl, my parents grew them. It was a big deal to go out after our baths at night to see the moonflower blooms.
The moonflower will have large white flowers that bloom in the evenings. I chose this spot so it could climb the fence. I chose the moonflower seeds because when I was a little girl, my parents grew them. It was a big deal to go out after our baths at night to smell the moonflower. We were such whimsical children.
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The wildflowers are growing very heartily. They must like the buzz they get from the leftover beer and wine seeping into the soil.
The zinnia's are in a pot at the end of the path. I found that pot on the side of the road with a bunch of seed starter pots. Being a dumpster diver (or side-of-the-road-diver) is very profitable and fun. Most recently, I found a beautiful coffee table, and Trev carried it to the living room.
The zinnia’s are in a pot at the end of the path. I found that pot on the side of the road with a bunch of plastic seed starters. Being a dumpster diver (or side-of-the-road-diver) is very profitable and fun. Most recently, I found a beautiful coffee table, and Trev carried it to the living room.
Some of these are the roommate's upstairs. But they contribute to the yard.
Some of these herbs are the roommate’s upstairs. But they contribute to make the yard very green and pretty.
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One thought on “Summer stories

  1. Sarah-
    Do you remember the scent of the moonflower? it was like citrus but so delicate and fragrant?
    I pulled some baby beets tonight and thought of you…
    love, mom

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