argurotoxos: fanart of Lady Loki amused (Lady Loki - snerk | by etrangere)
Today I:

-Got up around 9 AM and drove over to have breakfast, go on a morning walk, and talk with one of my closest friends. (A few days ago, we went on an 11-mile bike ride together.)

-Stopped at the doctor's office to pick up a script for my mom and make my annual physical appointment. One of the receptionists actually gave me a printed copy of my immunization record at no cost. (The last time I'd tried to get it, I was told they would have to print my whole medical record and charge me almost $40. It's still crazy to me that I can't get my whole medical record without paying for it, or even read it myself at the office, but having the immunization list is a start.)

-Went to my bank's ATM for more cash.

-Bought a second watering can (for the back porch plants), another bottle of sunscreen, and some cheap, scented bubble bath at Walmart.

-Returned some of my and my mom's books at the library. I normally never eat while reading physical books, especially library books, but did one day at work when no one else was on to have lunch with and, sure enough, I spilled some food on it. It doesn't look that bad, but it's an interlibrary loan book, so it's up to the original library to decide if they just want to note the condition or if they want me to pay for a new copy. I also checked out a number of audio CDs and a few new books for Maine and the car drive. (CDs -- The Music Rough Guides to the Himalayas, Japan, Turkish Cafe, and Scandinavia; The Art of Seduction: Gypsy Nights - Belly Dance Music of the Balkans; books -- Belly Dancing Basics by Laura A. Cooper, Funny Misshapen Body by Jeffrey Brown, The Heart of Buddhist Meditation by Nyanaponika Thera, The Zen Path through Depression by Philip Martin. I'm still reading The Lucifer Effect by Philip Zimbardo.)

-Picked up my mom's prescriptions at CVS.

-Had a quick lunch (thai curry TV dinner) while reading the newest chapter of one of my current favourite fanfics (A Week is a Long Time in Vanaheim by Hermaline75, Loki/Thor, pre-MCU, explicit, WIP).

-Put on some sunscreen and worked outside. Watered the flowers. Planted some creeping thyme in my small front garden. Moved one of my marigolds that was started to wilt from a clay pot into the soil near the thyme. Swept off the front steps. My plants: two marigolds in clay pots and one amaryllis in my bedroom; cactus and regular zinnia, thyme, and one marigold up front; one marigold, one amaryllis, and two pots of three morning glories each on the back porch.

-Helped my dad check the fluid levels and air conditioning system in my car. He checked the other two cars while I had a short dinner and changed.

-Went to the first class of a new belly dance session half an hour away. The drive wasn't as bad as I'd expected, and the place was easy to find. There were almost 30 people there, some who had taken prior classes with the instructor and some who were completely new, ranging from late teens to 60s! Most people did have their own hip scarfs, though. The studio was an actual dance studio with wooden floors, a barre, and full-length mirrors across one wall. Oh, what a beautiful sight! The mirrors really do help, and I found myself automatically going into ballet warm-ups. It was quite a difference from my experience with the nearby belly dance class, where I was the only one there and the studio was designed primarily as a yoga studio, with no mirrors or barre and just painted concrete. Even though I enjoyed having more people in the class, I also found myself feeling very self-conscious and had a hard time relaxing. The instructor seemed much more knowledgeable, gregarious, and willing to give constructive criticism than the local one, although also a bit absent-minded. I'll be in Maine next week, but signed up for the rest of the session, which will be every Thursday night at 6 PM through 17 July. To my surprise, the instructor said she might even cover veil and zill (finger cymbal) use even though it's a beginner class.

-Came home and ate some fried rice with my parents.

-I might burn some music CDs for Maine after finishing this.

I work tomorrow 7:30 AM - 4:15 PM, Saturday 8 AM - noon (in theory; it might change). If we don't leave for Maine on Sunday, I might go to my close friend's house; he's off that day and their pool might be open.
argurotoxos: Midnighter and Apollo smiling and laughing (Midnighter/Apollo - laugh | by cassshan)
When I went to bed yesterday, I discovered to my surprise that one of my amaryllis had bloomed! One they start growing, they really take off. I was afraid the stem would grow taller than my window.

Photos under cut. )
argurotoxos: Emilie Autumn sitting on the floor (Emilie - floor | by betterthanlegos)
I bought two amaryllis bulbs in the post-Christmas sales. They're on my desk next to the east-facing window in my bedroom. The second one I bought was already growing past the cardboard even without water or sun; I've been surprised how much it's grown just this week. The other bulb, however, hasn't done much. The blooms are supposed to be bright red (first/slow one) and reddish-orange with white lines (second/fast one).

Below are two photos of the amaryllis, plus new photos of my belly dance outfit(s) with commentary.

Photos under cut. )
argurotoxos: an elegant half-nude woman standing in green skirts with head facing down and butterflies at her feet (Fée verte)
My maternal grandmother has long been a gardener. For her, I think it is both a joy and a catharsis. My mom occasionally plants flowers, but isn't much into it, and the greatest connection with plants I remember was a project to grow grass in a hydroponics tank in junior high.

After helping my grandmother with her garden during April and May, and watching my best friend's parents work on theirs, I decided to try it out. My mom had a free packet of bachelor button seeds and I bought some dusty millers, with the reasoning that I like both the colour silver and fuzzy plants. I also bought an astible bulb and two seed packets which accidentally had water spilled on them; none of these sprouted. (One of the seed packets wasn't set to bloom until next summer, but I fear - in my very limited knowledge - the water may have ruined them.)

We had a very dry early July. I watered the plants about every other night, which seemed to work for the bachelor buttons, but I think hurt the dusty millers. We've had more steady rain since the end of July and I stopped hand-watering; it's only now that the dusty millers are truly starting to grow.

I'm a bit disappointed with the bachelor buttons. I'm happy they lived enough to bloom (I must not have a black thumb after all!), though the blooms didn't last as long as I'd hoped and they seem rather weepy. (Not enough water?) The area where all these are planted is rather root-ridden, with perhaps 4-5 hours of sunlight a day. I'm sure the soil's not in the best condition, either, and I didn't do anything to it other than throw in some composing dirt I procured from the backyard.

I'd like to plant a perennial in either the bachelor button or dusty miller's space for next year, I think. I've always liked bleeding hearts, and hyacinths have a special emotional meaning to me due to Greek mythology, but I also want something easy to care for that will thrive in this space. My list of other possibles (both annuals and perennials) from internet searching is: coleus, lobelia, impatiens [my grandmother's suggestion], larkspur, snapdragons, cockscomb, English bluebell, lungwort, hellebore, turtlehead chelone, and lamb's ear [I've loved these since I was a kid; they're the plants that feel like velvet]. If anyone has any suggestions, I'd be happy to hear them. Same for general gardening tips.

Some photos behind the cut. Not too bad for a beginner, I suppose. It wasn't a negative experience (as I plan to do it again), and a good reason to get outside and develop patience, but I feel I could have done better.

My tiny newbie garden. )

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argurotoxos: Midnighter holding balloons, waiting for his husband (Default)
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March 2016

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