The neighbors’  house, lately known as The Pink House, has now been recovered with white vinyl siding.  Looks nice — the overall effect is reminiscent of the many white-clapboard farmhouses around this part of the world.  Changes the way light reflects into our house and yard: brighter, but no more of the warm sunrise-color we used to get. 

    The biggest surprise though, was discovering that the neighbor’s ornamental cherry tree, which shades the castle yard, has pale pink blossoms — not white as previously thought.  The neighborhood is all in flower right now, and the cherry tree is starting to drop its petals, covering the rosemary thicket where the Bun has made herself a hideout, and all the ground around it, right there at the foot of the castle.  Very magical.

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An assortment updates:

    School is doing okay!  Been holding strong in math, working Mr. Boy’s writing skills through a manic effort to complete his religious-ed materials prior to FHC, and unschooling (which, for us, is not as "un" as the experts tell us it ought to be) has been working very well as always in the social studies, science, and literature departments.  Will get back  to work on spelling-diligence now that the big FHC push is past, and there’s a move afoot to re-renew our efforts at French as well.

    In the garden . . . we missed our window for putting in a spring garden, but there is talk of sowing seeds for some summer vegetables sometime next week.   A place for the corn is already ready; if I can get some oregano moved, we’ll have room for a some extras above and beyond the mandatory tomatoes and watermelon. 

    Pansies, everyone will be glad to know, did quite well this year.  In a revolutionary break-through, we discovered that movable containers are, in fact, movable.  What does this mean?  It means no more traumatic pulling out of annuals that are still limping along into their successor’s season.  With the warmer weather — we’ve made the switch from trying to keep the house warm, to trying to keep it cool — the pansies have retreated to a shadier a corner where they can enjoy their golden months, and I can happily plant some basil and marigolds without agonizing over untimely pansy-death. 

    Lots of interesting bird action this year.  In addition to the usual visits to the feeder from migrants — spring and fall are interesting that way — a pair of Carolina wrens attempted to build a nest in the mailbox by the castle; we even moved the mailbox up out of toddler’s reach once we discovered their plans.  They seem, however, to have thought better of this reproductive strategy, and presumably have moved on to a quieter location.  Disappointing, but we had fun watching them build. 

    In mystery ailment "news": still a mystery.  Thought we had it sufficiently figured out, and was pleased it with its apparent steady retreat.  Last week, in an effort, no doubt, to probe into the depths of my sanity, the dear old m.a. decided to make a confusing re-appearance.  Has eased off again this week, hopefully will continue to do so.  Who knows.   Using the always-handy guessing method to figure out what helps and what doesn’t, fortunately symptoms are staying quite mild and manageable.

    Hands-permitting, in the queue for the blog includes the long-promised (still unwritten) bits about structures of justice and other living-wage topics, some photos by LP, and the very overdue updating of the links in the sidebar.  All to be delivered with the usual timeliness. Ahem.

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