31 July 2007


while i was away the garden burst forth with blooms and color. more about that later perhaps. for now heres echinacea, purple coneflower, and some yellow flowers that came from a friends garden. both all webbed up in the early morning sunlight.

28 July 2007

home again home again

a container of clam chower brought home from the take out place at the beach. this is one of my favorite foods. but alas the taste is just not the same when served so far away from the sound and smell of the ocean.

beach birds

these little birds flock along the waters edge scooting back and forth en masse. they take off as one and swoop back and forth around the shoreline like one huge sea bird marionette. every time i try to get close they fly. but this morning they waded long enough to get off a few photos. id like to be able to tell you what these birds are but im honestly not sure. they might be plovers. and they might not.

27 July 2007

after the walk

when i walk the beach in the early morning i leave my flip-flops in the sand by the stairs. this mornings walk must have taken longer than usual. by the time i returned the tide had come in just enough to send the shoes floating in this shallow pool.


an evening excursion to the center of the village provided beautiful little shops boutiques and galleries. tshirts and jewelry, trinkets and pottery, local jams and hand painted lampshades. and look - a wall the entire length of a store stocked with nothing but bottles of hot sauce.

26 July 2007

good morning

once i read about this atmospheric phenomenon called the green flash. ive looked for it at the beach every summer since i first heard of it. for scientific reasons i dont understand at the precise instant the sun breaks over the horizon theres supposed to be a momentary flash of green that streaks into the morning sky. it lasts a split second ive read. blink and youve missed it. avert your eyes and its gone. and try as i might i have never seen it. but this is the reason i sleep facing the east at the beach. i am ever hopeful that one morning ill wake to see the flash over the ocean.


this found on the fence rail in the yard. i think it may be called 'british soldiers' although ive never seen it growing anywhere but in the woods. regardless its a startling bright red growing there on a bed of muted greens and greys.

24 July 2007

large print

middlesex is finshed and i needed new summer reading material. one of my purchases was a large print version of a book i wanted to read. and lo! i read it in record time. does it actually take less time to read a large print book than its small print counterpart? or does it make no difference? number of words would be constant, number of pages would not. more left to right eye sweeps but less words in a line. does bigger type size translate to less eye strain and increased speed? all i know for sure is its a lot easier to read large print when youre wearing dark glasses and facing the sun on the beach.

23 July 2007

gifts from the sea

shells and rocks and beach glass collected by the girl on walks during her brief visit here. she has a keen eye for such finds. maybe shes her mothers daughter with regard to beach environs.

22 July 2007

game night

growing up the family was never too big on board games. but its becoming traditional on vacation to play at least one killer game of trivial pursuit. again this summer we all lost to my mother. small wonder since shes lived through all that history, geography, sports and leisure, entertainment. already we have demanded a rematch next summer.

21 July 2007

all the comforts of home

including fresh herbs and produce. basil for tomatoes and sauce, dill to mix with butter for the corn, rosemary for pastas and potatoes, chives for the burgers. all these and more not in the garden but in a plastic cup on the kitchen windowsill overlooking the marsh.

20 July 2007

snail trails and footprints

a snail making its way to the water. human tracks in the sand as well this fine evening as part of the baby girls initiation to the beach. she was awake and alert seemingly taking in the sights and sounds and smells of the sea. a few more years and shell be a beach bum just like her grammie.

18 July 2007

though the window

on a dreary grey day at the beach there are serendipitous moments still. sitting in the window i glance up from my book to watch the fog roll in and notice a multitude of webs between the posts of the deck. filmy webs everywhere - but no sign of the spiders who made them.

17 July 2007


many years back i clerked at a store in our three season tourist area back home. to pass the time i used to study the visitors - their dress their mannerisms their speech - and try to imagine what they did in real life. the judge in birkenstocks, the teacher in a bikini top, the ceo in a motorcycle t-shirt taking his kids to breakfast. i was reminded of this game when i caught my reflection in the car on my way in from the store. uncombed hair pulled back, oversized shirt, no makeup. i looked positively wretched. never would i appear in public like this at home. but with vacation comes relaxed habits and blessed anonymity. looking at me now no one would ever guess im queen of a small island nation off the coast of portugal.

16 July 2007

rocky shore

being at the ocean is paradise for a collector of rocks. time was when i would gather up all that looked appealing to me. but in years past my rock collecting strategy has changed. now i choose one rock only to bring back from the beach. the best rock. and take the entire vacation to find it. as i walk the waters edge i am constantly on the look out. when i spot an interesting rock i compare it to the previous find. then i pocket the better rock and return the lesser one to the sea. now see that round orange one on the right? right now that rock is the front runner. thats the rock to beat.

vacation at last

today was the travel day of a long awaited vacation. lots of traffic and wild thunderstorms all the way to the destination. but as i arrived the clouds parted and there was a beautiful sunset over the salt marsh. red sun at night, sailor's delight...

15 July 2007

in the back

one of my amigas bought a new car. same model as mine only obviously newer. strange to see such familiar interior in a car thats not my own. when i rode in it this morning i chose to sit in the back behind the driver. that way id have the same perspective i always have when driving. things beyond the windshield would look familiar too. just a couple of feet farther away thats all.

14 July 2007


outside my window this single leaf foreshadows the impending autumn. i am seriously contemplating climbing up there and yanking it down.

12 July 2007

one more vine

on my way from the compost pile i stop by the garden to pull some weeds and grasses. i get carried away and weed more than i expected to. just as i finish i turn to see this lovely delicate little vine on a small plant with tiny yellow flowers and leaves fringed with light. it isnt until later when i download the picture that i even notice the diminutive fruit of the plant - the beginnings of a cucumber.

11 July 2007

board book for a future fan

found in todays mail a gift from the family of a young friend. is this a nifty baby present or what? when she was an infant, the girl was subjected to all the broadcasted games. but this baby could potentially be a much bigger fan for having had this book read to her over and over and over again during her formative years. in season and off season. so i dont know whos going to enjoy this present more - the baby girl or me! thanks m de-b!

the vine

that off centered upright vine is bittersweet growing again in the old compost place just like it did last year. its a beautiful plant in the fall but it climbs and it spreads and its invasive and i dont want it growing here. so it was cut to the ground again this year as it was last. but before it was cut and pulled i studied - and photographed - the vine. i cant figure out how it got from the ground to the tree at least six feet above it. did the vine stand there vertically just growing til it reached the branch and then held on? that doesnt seem possible. in any event im really sorry i never even noticed it until today.

09 July 2007

blast from the past

cutting up cantaloupe listening to npr and thinking about the ball game and wham! out of no where comes a long forgotten memory. when the girl was small she loved to eat melons of all sorts. not in little-kid chunks though. she preferred them in this sliced form - cantaloupe smiles we called them. jeesh. this grammie business is bringing out all sorts of old memories. that i promise ill try not to blog about too much.

07 July 2007


they tell me that in the old days homeowners opened windows and threw trash out into the yard. i cant rationalize why anyone would do that but the yard here certainly supports that theory. digging in the garden yields pottery shards and pieces of china and ornate glass. scraps of metal and old silverware. clay marbles and once a thin old coin from the 1800s. the latest find is shown. looks to be part of a salt shaker dont you think?

06 July 2007

so much for prolificacy

looking through the raindrops to your right we pass by the field where until two days ago milkweed used to be prolific. see blog entry below. i wonder if it continued to smell sweetly as it was mowed to the ground.

05 July 2007

red, light, & blue

on the afternoon of independence day the raspberries growing at the edge of the yard are starting to ripen. looks like someone else has found them too.

04 July 2007

a new project

plans are underway for a long awaited sewing project. a quilt for the baby girl. if i start now perhaps i can finish before shes out of a crib.

02 July 2007

milkweed revisited

this sphere of pink is a cluster of flowers of a milkweed plant. last fall i blogged the seed pod. most tend to think of the plant in its late autumn state with seeds releasing from the split pod and traveling out on the wind. but in my mind its summer thats the best time for milkweed. the plant is nondescript, the flower unremarkable. but the scent is one of the best smells of summer. on my road is a field where milkweed is prolific. pass that spot on a warm summers day and the smell will envelope you with its sweetness. so every year i leave some milkweed to grow in the yard. the tall gangly plant is not at all pretty and looks very much out of place. but theres nothing better than waking up to that smell wafting in my window.