I’m grateful today that these seedlings are doing so well! I think I’ve finally got a handle on how to start them. In the past, I’ve tried many different mediums for starting them, in many different types of containers; I’ve watered from below, and they’ve damped off from being too wet. They’ve gotten leggy. This year, they all look pretty solid, and I’ve just planted another flat full of various tomatoes and peppers that should sprout in a few days. Since I don’t know when I’ll get around to adding on a greenhouse to the south end of the house, I’ve ordered a larger, 3-tier LED grow light stand in hopes of growing more starts with a lot less moving of trays and pots in and out for weeks before I can plant in the ground. So I’m grateful not only for the first healthy seedlings of the season, but for the ability to grow even more going forward, and filling the garden with organic, extremely local food plants and flowers, to nurture everyone in this little ecosystem.
I’m grateful that Stellar’s so agreeable. “Which way do we go? Which way do we go?!” He’s eager for anything we do together, but especially a walk.
“Do you want breakfast?” I ask him. “Oh, okay.“
“Do you want to come inside?” “Do you want dinner?” “Oh, okay.”
“Do you want to lie down?” “Do you want to get up?” “Do you want to go outside?” “Oh, okay.”
“Do you want to go for a walk?” “Where?! When? Now? Yesyesyesyes! Arooooo!”
Peaceable kingdom. “You pretend I don’t exist, and I’ll pretend you don’t exist.” We walk right through them, with barely a ripple, sometimes. Other times they scatter and flee. Who knows why?
Topaz walks with us every afternoon these days, up the driveway and back through the woods. This evening she walked all the way up beyond the top gate, the farthest she’s ever come. Usually she lags far behind and waits for our return. Show showers swept like walking rain along the south flank of Grand Mesa, driven by bracing west wind, some grazing the ground, some just snow virga not touching down. Do I need to take a picture of every cloud? Kinda.
I’m grateful, as always, for walks with Stellar. He was extra wobbly today, but still game for anything. He passed on the far side of a tree, and I heard a cat bell; but I knew Topaz was inside. I paused, alert, then heard it again distinctly. .. coming from the far side of the tree where I could hear Stellar snoofing around the base of the trunk. He moved along as I crossed over snow to inspect. I knew what I’d see before I got there: finding an old cat collar is like winning a prize.
I’ve only found half a dozen through the years. I’m grateful for that momentary thrill of surprise, and for the insight each gives me into the habits and range of my cats. Other prizes on our walks today, and each day, make each simple stroll an adventure into the unknown when we follow his senses and mine. He is my sixth sense, expanding the universe of my perception with his eyes, nose, and ears.
We pass this piñon sometimes, with its enticing hole at eye level. It’s a good time to check it before someone starts nesting there in spring, so I poke my camera through and shoot. Nothing new yet, but evidence (below) of previous nesting, including grass and a bit of baling twine. The amber-colored pearls I think are just that, sap beads; that, or someone has hidden stolen gemstones in there. I’ll pop the phone in there now and then over the next few months and see what transpires.
We walk about four times a day, along a variety of loops and up the driveway once or twice, giving us a total of about a mile and a half of exercise. I’m grateful I have the health to walk, the dog to encourage me, the world of wonder at our feet, and a warm home to return to.