Mt. Rainier and Lenticular Clouds - Dec. 2008 copyright: JMM

July 8, 2014

First Days of Summer

June and Mercury Retrograde were Brutal. Capital B-rutal! Car insurance snafu that took almost a month to straighten out.  Three trips to the DMV in Quincy and a mountain of paperwork to wade through just to get the truck re-registered.  Computer problems.....still not sure if it's my laptop's WiFi card or glitches with the Comcast wireless.  Either way, it's driving me insane.  The parking spot in town we've rented for almost 2 years has been blocked off by the lot owner, despite him being the one to tell us we had to pay to park there (his actions have targeted every business owner on that part of the street, as well as several Mass Maritime students, and we are not the only ones super pissed off).  Sagan was first limping for almost two weeks, then he got really sick with diareah and vomiting, which fortunately only lasted a day or two. I wish I could say the same thing about the residuals smells left behind on the carpet, even though I've cleaned them several times. And then we closed out the month with a flat tire on my car that was unable to be fixed, necessitating the purchase of two new front tires.  So much for chanting 'rabbit rabbit rabbit' on June 1st!  At least we come through these shitstorms stronger....some of them could really tear a couple apart, but not with us.

Still, we had really great weather with only a couple of humid days, which made for great walking.  I was on the Canal one morning and the train bridge went down.  This was the first time I saw the Coast Guard (on the right) stop a boat and make them turn around and hold, against the current, until the bridge went back up again.


Almost turned around.  This is done for safety purposes, even though the boat was still pretty far from the bridge, but the current was flowing towards the bridge very quickly. 

Took me three years to see the train on the bridge and now I've seen it three times since May!

The summer flowers continue to bloom and amaze me.  I think the key to gorgeous flowers might just be a winter full of snow and polar vortexes.  I've been told that this is clematis.

Such a pretty shade of purple!


Photobombed by a bee.




I love the pattern of the yellow center.


Why did the......oh nevermind.

Nice sunset clouds too.



July 1st started with high humidity and temps, and the first tropical storm/hurricane threat of the season, with 'Arthur' making a serious attempt at battering the eastern seaboard with high winds and rain.  Just in time for July 4th.  How humid was it you ask?  Humid enough to cause this to happen in the Canal, something I've never seen outside of San Francisco.  The fog bank formed just inside the train bridge and stretched as far as I could see.  The cold water hit that hot, humid air and made low lying fog. 


July 4th was just too rainy and humid to go downtown for the parade.  We hung out at home, watched TV, played online, and then I decided to try a recipe for homemade vanilla cupcakes, which I had to make red, white & blue.  I'll NEVER go back to using a mix again.  These are light, not super sweet or greasy.  

Decided to use Cool Whip to frost them because that's not overly sweet, topped with colour sugar and strawberry slices.  I halved the recipe and it made 8.

Soooooo good!

To add insult to injury to poor Sagan, who had a really rough June, I took him out the night of the 4th in the middle of the storm and I thought he slipped off the step to the ground....it happened so fast, I whipped around to see if he was OK to see a fluffy white tail disappear under the deck with Sagan's whole face in it.  In the time it took me to yell NO! and pull his lead, the skunk had unloaded a full dose of stinky spray in his face.  So if you happened by my house at about 10:30 that night you would have seen me & Russell in the pouring rain and wind, scrubbing poor Sagie and hosing him off.  Luckily we'd acted fast enough to get it all off him and no smell remained, but he was more than happy to head into his crate for a snooze!

24 comments:

  1. It always amazes me the things that go wrong all at the same time. The cupcakes are pretty. Probably "were pretty" by now.

    Poor Sagan and you. Glad he stink free.

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    1. It was crazy! I really didn't want to utter the words, 'what else can go wrong?' because I was afraid to find out. Oh and I have some serious willpower, there are still 2 or 3 cupcakes left! Although I did eat the strawberries off the tops b/c they were starting to sag.

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  2. Never tempt Fate, JoJo. Hope the good luck begins soon. That is Clematis (the purple flower, I used to have some in my back garden with honeysuckle and wisteria, too. I like the smell of the last two. Poor puppy. I am not fond of skunks, one tried to set up house under our garden shed. Definitely a stinker.

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    1. I loooooooove wisteria!!!! Unfortunately my track record with plants is not very good at all. Russell just got a tomato plant which is on the deck and I told him he'd have to take care of it cause I know I'll kill it.

      I think skunks are adorable little creatures, but not when they are stinking up my yard and doggie!

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  3. Poor Sagan! Poor YOU! Well, I guess you can laugh about it later but there's nothing funny about skunk spray while you're in the midst of dealing with. Or a dog with the poops. Blech. At least you got some great photos!!! And those cupcakes? GET IN MA BELLEH NOW! :)

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    1. I was just glad that we were able to get it all cleaned up before we went to bed. I am one of those people who cannot sleep with smells in the room, which is one reason why I won't cook in the crockpot overnight because the smell wakes me up. Those cupcakes were super easy and tasted 100x better than box mixes.

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  4. Dog has had a bad time of it hasn't he? You too of course but at least you know what's going on. I love clematis, it's a great climber and looks so pretty. Glad I wasn't around for the cup cakes. Nice pix though.

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    1. It was not a banner month for little Sagan, that's for sure.

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  5. So disappointing to have bad weather on the 4th but glad you've gotten a lot of walking in the rest of summer so far!

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    1. And as you can see, the humidity has returned this week but I'm gonna walk over to the Maritime Academy shortly b/c I hear there's a tall ship over there!

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  6. Your pictures are gorgeous. I love the flower pictures. So glad you survived the shit storms and lived to tell the tale.

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    1. Thanks Kathy! But I have to say, I've had enough shit storms to last a lifetime.

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  7. Pretty blossoms and tasty cake!

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    1. Thank you! And yes the cake mix is quite good. I don't see myself buying box mixes ever again.

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  8. Ugh, I'm sorry you had such a rough start on your summer. I'm glad you two made it through the other side better for it. We had a couple of punks go through our neighborhood slashing tires. I think the last total I heard was 22 people were effected. And, they slashed a minimum of two tires on each car, some three tires. They stole my globes off the lights in my yard but compared to the cost of tires, that was nothing.

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    1. OMG! What is WRONG with people today????? It's so discouraging to hear things like that. It happened up in Seattle a few times when I lived in the PNW. I felt so sorry for everyone because new tires are a huge expense. I once had a solar light at the bottom of my driveway out there and it lasted all of maybe 3-4 days before the assholes across the street shot it out with a paintball. They routinely splattered our trees out front w/ them and I'd find paintballs all over our front lawn. I finally had enough and called the cops who took it seriously enough to actually show up and tell them that if it happened again they'd be facing serious charges.

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  9. Oh dear I hope the rest of this month is better for you. I have no idea what a skunk smells like but I imagine it's not good.

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    1. You guys don't have skunks over there? Yes, their spray is very smelly. It's even still lingering a little bit outside near where Sagan was sprayed the other night despite all the rain we had that night. It must have soaked into the deck boards.

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  10. Oh my God JoJo skunk is horrible!!! What a time you had, on the plus side those cupcakes look Delish!!!

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  11. Oh, JoJo, I'm sorry for all the crap that's been dumped on you. Hopefully, it's getting better. As always, I admire your ability to find beauty all over, despite life's stressors.

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  12. Those cupcakes look delicious! Sorry about Sagan. Bad skunky! I hope Sagan is okay. Thanks for sharing your summer stories. I hope everything is well with you.

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  13. Joe, Robyn & Sonnia - for whatever reason I can't reply individually as my computer and wifi continue to give me trouble! Oh I forgot to mention our toilet also broke but Russell was able to fix it.

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  14. YOU GOT A DAISY, you can't go wrong. Daisies rule! :D

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  15. June really was a bummer for you ! I feel so sorry for Sagie, first the limp and then the intestinal upset and then head on with a skunk. Poor baby. :(
    Hopefully your bout of bad luck is over and done.

    As always your photos are truly super, JoJo. I really like the one with the busy bee on the pink rose - it would look lovely as a note card.

    Your 4th of July cupcakes look so delicious and the one with the bite taken from it shows us it is indeed light and fluffy and moist. It's been so long since I've made cupcakes from scratch, I'm afraid I'd end up with pancakes.

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