In Gainesville Fl Spring is literally in the air. Pollen showers down from the oak trees like fine yellow snow. New leaves burst from the branches and push out the old leaves that had clung on all winter. From the leaf and pollen strewn earth new grass shoots up like tiny green swords. The azalea, salvia and dogwood are bursting with flowers, and the orange tree is sweet with blooms. Peaches grow slowly fatter and pinker on the branches of the young peach tree every day.
Three weeks ago I brought home seven tiny speckled sussex chicks from the feed store.
I became obsessed with bonsai while I was in college, growing tortured shrubs in cheap square pots in the yard. When I lived in Taiwan the obsession grew, but I was frustrated trying to grow the beautiful specimens I saw at the weekend flower markets.
I never thought to use a grow light in our tiny apartment, and there wasn’t enough natural light for the kinds of trees I tried to grow. Those that survived the light conditions inevitably lost the battle to dehydration when they were abandoned for vacations.
Dried apples are insanely easy to make. Whether you prefer your apples dried to a crisp or left a bit chewy, bare or powdered with cinnammon, tart or sweet, the principle is the same. The thinner and more even the slices the better. Firm, less ripe apples work better than softer ones. Read More
We all know the frustration of trying to communicate something to our dogs that they just don’t seem to get. Whether it is a training goal, a behavior you are trying to change, or something interesting on a walk that you are trying to point out, sometimes your dog can’t seem to understand. Other times, it seems like she knows what you are thinking before you do.
Our dogs also have the experience of trying to communicate something that seems obvious to them that we just don’t get. Sometimes our requests seem ridiculous to them, sometimes incomprehensible.
We ask them to deny impulses which come intensely and unbidden, and we ask them to resist their instincts, sometimes constantly. Meanwhile we disregard the important information they communicate to us about the approaching danger represented by the mailman, or the infringement of our territory by the neighbor dog sniffing our fence. Many times, the miscommunication we have with our dogs comes down to a difference in perspective. Read More