Do *not* tell me the sign is misspelled. I know. I do not care. The apostrophes are in the right places. No, I do not know what possessed me to misspell the sign. Get over it.
This. Brian (my sometime soon-to-be son-in-law) said, “It smells like a Vietnamese fish market.” He’s Vietnamese (well, he’s Canadian. That’s close, right?).
We counted at least 11 in one clump, 7 in another, and one on the far side of the yard. I’ll let the reader do the research: Voodoo lily. Dracunculus vulgaris. It’s an amazing plant in the arum family. Don and I found it in the yard of a rental we lived in, back in 1983-84. When we moved, we dug it up, filled in the hole, and transported the bulbs. The Lily loves the yard we have now – it’s been transplanted 3x and spent one year in storage when we were homeless.
It blooms on June 7, every year.
June 7, 1980. Donald & I got married. This is the first year we have hosted a “stinkin’ barbecue” to go with our anniversary, even though we have discussed doing it for years. And years.
We invited only family, so if you didn’t get an invite… Hey, we tried to keep it simple.
Chrystal & Brian came over. Then Don’s nephew, his wife, and their three daughters – all of whom we are just getting to know. I knew Don’s nephew back when he was just a little kid, but there have been long stretches of not being in contact, so this is really a sweet thing to have them come over and join us. The girls are adorable.
I turned around, and my camera had been hijacked. Chrystal wandered around taking garden photos with it.
A candid of Don (Brian’s legs in the foreground).
Oh, thanks. A candid of me. Friend Kate is in the purple next to me.
Awwww. Harvey candid.
We put the dogs in kennels because one of Don’s great nieces is terrified of dogs. Our dogs love kids, but between them, they weigh 160+ pounds. That’s a lot for a kid who is afraid of dogs.
“Who could be afraid of me…????”
Isn’t that the saddest face, ever? And, actually, Chrystal spent some time introducing the dog-shy great niece to Harvey. Maybe next time, we could ease Harvey out into the crowd. Then Murphy.
Why put our dogs into kennels when guests are at our home? Let me tell you why: it isn’t about our ego. We want our dogs to be safe and we want the child in question to have a good experience with dogs. Our dogs are spoiled. They can spend half a day in their little kennels while we party a few feet away. They have water and shade. the little ones pet them through the bars. It’s a much safer environment than having the dogs loose to beg for food, run after little girls who are running, and bark loudly (scaring kids and adults).
It’s common sense.
Chrystal handed off my camera to the oldest great niece (10). I didn’t even blink. Chrystal acted as tutor, showed her how to wear the camera around her neck, how to use the settings.
I must be getting old. this didn’t faze me. $500 camera in the hands of a 10 year old I just met.
I know. My own kids just fell over, dead. I wouldn’t let them touch my 35 mm SLR (the one *I* dropped and broke). But I just let some random 10 year old handle my DSLR.
She took the photo of the log (above), a couple selfies that I can’t post because she is not my child (but I will send them to her), some random mystery photos (not sure what she was looking at – a hummingbird??), and one of the Voodoo Lily.
That is a great shot.
Moreover, she decided she wants a camera of her own. *Score!* Child found an interest because formerly uptight adult person decided she was too old to be uptight anymore.
I am so glad I have dropped those reins. I think my grandkids taught me that: loosen up. You only have the now. Kids grow up too quickly. Cameras don’t cost as much as an ER visit. Or bail money.
Next year, we may invite more people. It won’t be a landmark anniversary year, but we are feeling confident in our ability to host a small party. Don barbecued 6# of country-style ribs, plus a few hotdogs and hamburgers to order for kids. 3 kids, 8 adults. Nearly 90 degrees (WHEW!!!) outside.
I won’t bore you with the details of the wedding 35 years ago. But… There was a cattle drive that we all got stuck in. My niece (flower girl) interrupted the wedding vows to ask her mother a question. Don’s cousin arrived late in his beat-up car with the hole in the muffler. There was a dog fight. I banned everyone from tapping the keg before the vows, so my mother-in-law tapped the hard liquor. There was a salad bowl that got run over three times. Someone named Justin filled my car with rice (we never did get the rice out of the windows, so when you rolled or unrolled them, you could hear rice rattle around inside). The State Police drove by three time because they were having a party in Union. just 5 miles away. We all drove home (drunk) the other direction (except my in-laws). My maid of honor got sick in my sister-in-law’s car (no, changed her mind when they stopped to let her puke). My mother-in-law’s future husband got pulled over for DUI AFTER he spent another hour or so at the bar in Unity with the State Police. And it did not rain on my wedding because I asked God (begged, pleaded, bribed) for a nice day on June 7. It resumed raining on June 9.
And my mother thought the wedding cake was made with buggy flour because the trees overhead dropped all kinds of critters onto the cake before we cut it. And ate it, because my mom didn’t mention the bug part to us until the next day.
And my brother’s date to the wedding was named Dorcas. If you didn’t get that, you didn’t have a brother in the 1960’s who called you, “DORKUS!” all your life.
*** I highly do NOT recommend getting behind the wheel of an automobile when intoxicated. If I were to do it again, we’d have slept in the park and driven home sober in the morning. Driving home that night was among the STUPIDEST decisions ever. I am ashamed to admit we did that. ***