A Little Road Trip, A Little Gardening, A Little Weekend Stuff

It was a busy, but productive weekend here in southern NY. The weather was mostly good. A bit humid at times, but it is summer, so that’s just part of the package.

On Friday, I drove to PA for my uncle’s funeral. He was my mother’s brother and was everyone’s favorite, I think. Aunt Dorothy died a few years ago, Mom last year, and Aunt Betty a number of years ago. We spent a fair amount of time at Aunt Dorothy and Uncle Jack’s as kids. They lived about half an hour from us, and they had an inground pool, so that was a good reason to visit often in summer! They also hosted Thanksgiving dinner for years. Christmas was at our house, and then Aunt Dorothy had a big lasagna dinner for everyone. The biggest thing we all remember is their Fourth of July parties. Everyone, and I do mean everyone, was invited. All the family, family of family, the kids’ friends, neighbors. Always fun. Marco Polo in the pool. Sitting around the pool deck, just relaxing. Hanging out on the screen porch. Food. Drinks. Just a fun, relaxing day. Lots of good memories have been running through my head since last week. Rest in peace, Uncle Jack. You were a genuinely good person.

Saturday was the iffiest weather day, so we decided to do some plant shopping. We wanted to fill in the hillside shade garden on the side of the house. We had the landscapers put in a path from the back yard gate to the front corner of the house, with two garden beds on either side. I have started to fill in the bed under the dining room windows, and this weekend, we wanted to work on the other side. We hit three garden centers, got caught in a pretty good rain storm, and bought 21 plants. Got them all put in on Sunday, and yesterday, the BaldMan started working on putting edging in to keep the gravel and mulch neater looking. It looks good out there. Everything seems to be doing okay, so far. A lot of work, but worth it.

Yesterday, as I said, the BaldMan did more work on the garden, and I did a bit of general straightening and putting stuff away in the house. Then had some down time to relax. He grilled, we ate, it was mostly good.

The not so good part was the fireworks. Lambeau is one of those dogs that gets anxious and upset during thunderstorms and fireworks. He paced, and was just a wreck. I do have calming treats for him, and he got them. They help some, but it is still not a good time for him. He spent most of the active sky boom time in the dark dining room. All the big stuff- aerial displays, firecrackers, cherry bombs, and the like- is illegal here but you’d never know it by the number of people shooting off all that stuff. At least the majority of them didn’t go much past 10-10:30. A few stray booms but by elevenish, it was all quiet. I am glad people at least respect that some need to sleep. Or just get some relief from all the noise!

And a reminder that for the rest of July, all of my books and stories are free at Smashwords only. You can see everything here. Free until July 31. Check them out and if you find something that seems interesting, go for it. All I ask is that if you do read something and enjoy it, please leave a review on Smashwords, Goodreads, Amazon- wherever you do your reviews. It really does help get some exposure for the books. It doesn’t have to be long and detailed. It doesn’t have to be 5 stars (though if it is, I won’t argue!). Three or four stars is nice. If you feel it deserves one star, well, I don’t expect everyone to love all of it, but you could just write that one out, and bury in the back yard, right? Seriously, please have a look and I hope you find something enjoyable to add to your summer reading.

Everything is FREE at Smashwords.com until July 31!

“Crossed Wires and Other Very Short Stories”. Twelve scifi and twelve fantasy short stories that can each be read in minutes. Available now Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Smashwords, and most other e-book retailers. More information here

I have written science fiction, fantasy, and urban fantasy stories. There are novels, novellas, and shorter pieces to fit everyone’s reading time. There are even some free stories, both here on the site and in other places. You can go here to find out more about the books I have published. They are available at Amazon, Smashwords, and most ebook retailers. Thank You!