Fleece in the Garden

The heatwave rages on. I think I’ve set some sort of personal record for laminating sweat upon myself today, and I haven’t spent much time outside. The contrast between the AC indoors and the humidity outside is just right for provoking a sweat within seconds of walking out the door.

My daughter and I braved the sauna-grade weather to do a bit of shopping today. One stop was JOANN Fabrics and Crafts. Apparently, their business name is styled in all caps. Anyway, whenever I walk into a craft store, I feel a curious combination of enchantment and indictment. I’m awed by the array of stunning craft supplies, but I feel indicted for knowing how to do so little of these crafts.

Of course, the only person charging me with failure-to-craft is myself. I see the rainbow of color-matched fat quarters for quilting, and I feel guilty that it is highly unlikely that I’ll get around to making a quilt. I just don’t want it enough to make it happen, but at the moment I see those fabrics, I regret that it’s not a priority for me. Life is full of skills I’d like to learn but have assumed the time to do so will not be forthcoming.

Our reason for going to JOANN was replenishing our inventory of fleece remnants that we use to line the guinea pigs’ cages. We change the fleeces daily, and the fabric washes well for a few months. Once their ripeness resists washing, they are replaced with new fabric. Today we found an irresistible cat-and-flower fleece:

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My daughter prefers cat-themed fleeces because our elder guinea L’Orange is so tough that he’s indifferent to images of predators.

When we came home, I took a picture of the latest cat fleece posed on one of our flower pots. I like the contrast between the real and the made. The image inquires, “Which is more beautiful?”

It also reminds me of the things I can do and those I cannot. I can tend a garden and take photos, but I can’t make the illustration on that fleece.

I wish I could sew. I’d buy more of that fabric and make a sweatshirt out of it. Would I look ridiculous in it? Probably. Would I be so pleased to wear such a thing that I wouldn’t care if I looked silly in it? Definitely.

I will close with another picture from today’s garden:

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Wetlands Photo Walk, June 29

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I suppose I had neglected to capture this neighborhood treasure for long enough this season.

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Summer Photo Walk, August 5


The sunflowers are in full bloom at the Allen County Children’s Garden. The ones in my garden are lagging behind others in town because I was late to sow their seeds this year. The annuals are prospering everywhere, and this public garden was no exception.

I spotted a wind chime fashioned in part from souvenir spoons. That’s some creative upcycling.




Yesterday I visited three wildflower prairies, and I’ve decided to share these pictures as the week progresses rather than make a single photo walk post of the best shots from yesterday. I can’t decide if the flower shown above is one of many varieties of wild sunflower that are now in bloom or a lance leaf coreopsis (Coreopsis lanceolata). Whichever flower it is, the honey bee loaded his leg bags with its pollen.