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FALL! Or Maybe not.

Well I thought Fall was here but I think I was mistaken. We had a few days of gloriously cool temperatures in the 70’s and darned cold nights ranging from 38-42 degrees! The only heater I have right now that’s operative is a little Coleman SportCat that’s only 1500 btu’s. It barely makes a dent in the cold but I guess it’s better than nothing. Then the hot weather returned. It’s back in the mid to high 80’s for at least the next week or so! Sheesh. I’m so done with summer!

My Russian neighbor has sold her house and is moving back to the Ukraine once they let Americans in. In the meantime she’s staying with some of her husband’s relatives in Phoenix. When she left she brought me some presents. She pronounced it preSENTS, like presenting an award, LOL. That’s one reason I have so much trouble understanding her. Most of the time I’d just nod and smile. Anyway, she gave me some very nice cacti along with some that were not so nice. One of them is a plastic froggy scarecrow with small cactus. ?? Honestly, as soon as I’m sure she’s gone, the frog gets it. She also gave me a straw scarecrow door decoration. Way too cutesie for my taste, besides I just love the little red heart on the door.

Last week the Food Bank gave away pieces of grocery store birthday cake. Nothing would tempt me more!! Then I noticed it was a rainbow cake, with garish colors…..phew! It was much easier for me to reject cake with carcinogenic food coloring all over it. And thank goodness there’s wasn’t a big fat icing rose on top or I may have had to gobble that up. As it is, I reluctantly threw it in the trash. Sigh.

OH I’m done losing weight! In fact I’ve gone a little beyond where I was aiming and my doctor told me I was too skinny! I don’t know about THAT but now I have to figure out how to hold onto the weight loss and not gain it back. That’s way harder than losing it in the first place. Here’s the new me.

I have started adding some previously “forbidden” foods back in but slowly. I had a consultation with my doctor’s wife who is an Integrative Nutritionist and she suggested a modified Paleo diet instead of the strict Keto. Paleo still restricts grains, gluten, dairy and sugar but does allow more leeway in the fruits and vegetables. I had half of a small sweet potato the other day….heaven! I’ve been adding more fruits every few days too, and then I wait 3 or 4 days to make sure it’s not causing any problems. I tried making chili with kidney beans, that was a big mistake! I ate it for both lunch and dinner one day and the next morning I’d gained 6#!! So the last two servings, I dug out all the beans and threw them on the compost pile. I’ve now taken off those extra 6# but it sure was scary. I guess it’s going to be a gradual process of learning what I can safely eat and what I can’t. I do eat some organic cheese and heavy cream in my coffee and that seems to be OK.

I have two bell pepper plants and two tomato plants left. I’m starting to get some fruits off them but they are much smaller than they’re supposed to be. My local Facebook gardening group mentioned that’s a “thing” this year, along with unusually high levels of rodent damage, much smaller fruits and veggies. My Rutgers tomatoes are more like cherry tomato size, and the mini peppers are WAY mini, less than an inch around.

I bought a $5 Purple Robe Locust tree about 2 1/2′ tall, and it took 6 tries before I was able to dig a hole big enough! (Rocks everywhere!) But I finally got it into the ground and two days later I found it cut off about 6″ up the trunk. I thought it would be safe because it has thorns! I see it is putting out some new leaves but even if I am able to protect it now, I’ve lost a whole year’s growth. I’ll be long dead before this thing ever grows big enough to shade the house! I also got a small Russian Sage and planted it in the garden near the cactus, and it’s surviving and even putting out pretty purple flowers! Turns out it’s toxic to critters, yay! It looks a lot like lavender but doesn’t smell as strong. I think lavender will also grow here without being eaten, but it’s so expensive I haven’t tried. I might try growing some from seeds next spring.

The little stripey lizards have had babies. Too cute! Their bodies are about an inch long, with tails twice that. And boy, are they fast!! I haven’t been able to get a photo of any of them, adults or babies, yet.

I’m hoping to start camping again next month! Just a little mini-tour around S.E. Arizona. The camper has been sitting here for three years!! Hard to believe. I’ve been going out there every day trying to sort things out and figure out where to put all the stuff I’ve got stored in there. When I moved into the house I neglected to remove everything from the camper fridge (which has not worked for several years)…..ewww. Big mess. I’ve gotten everything out now but there are some icky unidentifiable blogs of “stuff” on the bottom, yucko! Every day I open the door and look and just shut it again but one of these days I’ll tackle it. It’ll be good for storing dry foods once I get the ick out and use baking soda to remove the stink.

I wanted to send out a huge THANK YOU to the folks who have donated via my PayPalMe link! Even a little is a lot, and is very much appreciated. I always send a private Thank You email via PayPal but just found out recently that apparently they are not going through. I was very embarrassed when a friend had to ask if I got her money, and I know I sent her the email! So if I seem ungrateful, I’m really quite the opposite…..just have been using the wrong medium to send thank you emails.

6 replies on “FALL! Or Maybe not.”

You look fabulous Janis!
To bad about your plants still being eatin by I guess rabbits ? We had a couple nice cool days here but the smoke was horrible and I couldn’t breath very well. I’m so ready for cooler weather also sick of this heat.

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You look fantastic!! Glad you are going to get some camping in again. You have been pretty busy for quite some time!! I live in Wisconsin and I didn’t have a very successful garden season either. It was either too hot or too cold for my plants. I pay for water so it was pretty expensive for my meager harvest!! Continue to take care of yourself!

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Hey Jo, thanks for the compliment! We have a little haze here sometime but it hasn’t been bad at all. I think I have multiple critter problems…rabbits, mice and squirrels! And maybe packrats too.

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