creatures great & small
So this was going to be a post about all the flowers
I planted and transplanted during the Flower time.
(& an update on all the seeds & bulbs that have sprouted,
so in that regard, let’s start off with the hollyhocks
that sprouted in their bottle greenhouses by the bamboo fence.)
But life had other plans…
While I was planting flower bulbs over Nutella’s grave,
our Portuguese farmer neighbor lady came over
with the much anticipated kittens for Marmalade.
(While Mohamed & Marmalade were driving past their house,
she approached & asked Marmalade if she wanted a kitten,
as two were just born at her house in early April.
I’m sure if you ask most kids, they’d say “yes”
& ours was no exception. So a kitten we were getting.
Apparently, the two kittens bonded really well,
so a few weeks later she updated that she was giving us both.)
So Tuna and Zeitona
(Arabic for “olive” & similar to the Portuguese “azeitona”)
joined our clan last weekend.
We’ve had a bumpy start,
since Marmalade is used to dogs (& trained dogs at that)
so it has been a scratchy learning process for her.
And although I’m not really a cat-person, they are cute;
and it’s nice having critters around the house
(especially when they’re playing with each other & the beaded curtain).
But I’m happier with watching our toad and geckos outside;
and the fish and frogs in the pond.
So since my last entry,
the fish have been way more friendly.
I’ve seen all five of them a few times now,
and some I can actually watch for awhile
before they dart under the cover of the cattails.
It’s been really nice to watch them swim about.
And many of the frogs are getting used to us as well,
so instead of hiding we can watch them swim around the pond froggie style.
And at school yesterday,
Marmalade got two silkworms to bring home.
So now we also have two caterpillars in the house.
Our yard is still full of butterflies,
lots of Painted Ladies and these Yellow Clouds:
And Monday was the Mercado in São Teotónio,
and we got two new trees: a hazelnut and another pomegranate
(this one has a few flower buds on it!)
So we’ll plant them on the Fruit time on Friday.
Also the Sebastians came over one afternoon over the weekend,
and brought us a huge solar panel: 225 watts/40 volts,
so it more than doubles our solar capacity,
probably enough to power our new water pump,
once Mohamed can figure out how to wire everything together.
So today we got another huge battery to capture the charge we’ll be generating,
and 25 meters of plastic tubing to connect the pump to the well,
and to the rest of our water system.
And we bought another irrigation hose,
since we’ve already laid the hoses down by the old orchard
(to water the nine trees for apples, pears, plums, and cherries);
and up on the hill by the eight blueberries,
but still have a lot of trees all over the hillside
that will all need water during the long, rainless summer months.
Mohamed is also in the process of burying halved plastic drums for ponds,
so that we have easy access to water throughout the yard.
And has hooked up a faucet so we now have an outdoor sink
(the actual ceramic sink we found dumpster diving last fall).
So our water system is slowly coming together,
to keep everything happily hydrated.
On a final note,
we finally finished the bamboo fence!
And during the Flower time,
I planted more sweet peas and a nasturtium
to grow in with all the hollyhocks and morning glories.