August 29, 2013

giant leopard moth

Found this guy unfurling in our asian jasmine this afternoon. I relocated him to the eve's necklace so he wouldn't get trampled.

reflections on the last day of my fifth decade

George Carlin said that everyone is interesting at 50, either because they've made a success of themselves and they've learned a few things, or because they've screwed everything up. When I look back over my forties I see a shapeless mass; I got lost somewhere along the way.

To help shape my fifties I've set a couple ten-year goals beyond the simple goal of just hanging in there; the older I get the more I realize how little control I have over that, and I am grateful for each new day, despite how badly I squander most of them.

My first goal is to walk around the world with my dogs. And I mean that figuratively: the earth's circumference is 24,901 miles, so once around in a decade works out to just under seven miles a day. Totally do-able if I spend less time in the aether, which is, I think, a good goal too.*

The second goal is to get all the way through the Great Books of the Western World ten-year reading plan. I've read a lot of the list, but not methodically. I get hung up on the math. (A related goal, and part of the motivation for this one, is to learn how to think. My brain never shuts up, but most of my self-talk gets stuck in depressing, badgering ruts. I'd like to learn how to think all the way through a thought once in a while.) That's not the only reading I'll do, but there are gems in those pages ("Sing, Goddess...").

The third goal is less decade-specific, and more a lifelong thing. I'd like to be more deserving of my blessings: my magnificent children, my terrific parents and siblings, a woman with whom I daily fall ever more deeply in love, and our wonderful animal friends. Thank you all for bearing with me.

*Tangential rant: There is no "cloud." It's just magnets. Lots and lots of magnets.

August 28, 2013

aw, they gussied up the place

First day of Sarah's final semester! The university lights up the tower for special occasions - graduations, important scientific discoveries, and victories in intramural sporting events. Today's "17" is intended to welcome the incoming Class of 2017, though I doubt many of them got out of bed this morning early enough to see it. (Not to worry; the university deploys squadrons of both professional and student photographers at the beginning and end of every semester to capture images just like this, which they then give away FREE with the purchase of every new textbook. Ha ha ha.)

August 27, 2013

red yucca

snippets, 8-27-2013

Great links to great books in this post at dangerousmeta (see especially the list of links in Emmett's comment). I've read many of these (some, like the Apology, a least a half-dozen times), but I tend to wander and not stick to any of the better-formulated plans. Friday might be a good day to re-start the GBOTWW ten-year plan (since I start a new decade that day), or I might just tag along with St. John's undergraduate reading schedule - their fall semester begins on Thursday...and, you know, you gotta admire a school that has a bona fido library mascot, right?

Update, lunchtime: I just downloaded all the e-texts for St. John's first semester from MIT's Classics Archive and sent them to my Kindle. Took about 15 minutes. Brave new world.

August 24, 2013

ondine and pan play tag

shared for pan's grin at the end

boxwood owls


i thought this was phlox but it's not but phlox would be a good name for a sheepdog

August 20, 2013

August 19, 2013

August 15, 2013

August 14, 2013

August 12, 2013

August 11, 2013

garden notes, viii-xi-xiii

hawkweed, maybe? something from the dandelion family, but tiny

field notes, viii-xi-xiii