Thursday, March 25, 2021

Spring Flowers

Each spring brings a slow warmth and a renewal of the landscape. With the renewal comes the anticipation of learning whether the bulbs planted in the fall will grow or whether I yet again wasted untold amounts of money on flowers because I planted them too late or too early or under the wrong phase of the moon.

Fortunately, some flower bulbs are hardy and return year after year, assuming you don't accidentally pull them out during their off season. One such bulb is the daffodil. These came with the house when we bought it and more and more seem to appear each year.

I managed to catch one cluster of daffodils over the span of three days as they blossomed.

A cluster of daffodils with unblossomed buds.
Day 1

A cluster of daffodils with some flowers bloomed and some still in bud form.
Day 2

A cluster of daffodils with most flowers in bloom
Day 3

Not all of the daffodils are so cleanly spaced in the yard. Some are growing in the middle of a still dormant bush.

Daffodils with the red branches of a dormant bush in the foreground.

Other spring marvels in my yard include this mystery plant. Every summer and fall, I wonder whether it is a weed and whether it should be removed. Each spring so far I've been shocked that this random cluster of leaves produces some rather lovely flowers.

Cluster of flowers and leaves

If you wondered whether any of the bulbs I planted in the fall have decided to grace the yard with their presence, you may be pleased to learn that a few have. I believe these are crocus and mini paperwhite daffodils.

Several bunches of mini paperwhite daffodils and white, yellow, and purple crocus, all in bloom.

My plan, if I manage to successfully plant bulbs each fall, is to have a yard full of tiny flowers each spring. The difficulty lies in planting new bulbs around previously established bulbs. Perhaps one day I will create a map of the flowerbeds. Until that time, I'll just proceed with caution and hope.

Saturday, March 20, 2021

Happy Birthday, Grumbles!

For Grumbles 6th birthday, he took a trip to Valheim. While he didn't go on any grand adventures hunting trolls or raiding caves, he did enjoy a relaxing day.

The day began by surveying the land from the deck of his cabin. No enemies were spotted in the area.

Two characters on a deck overlooking a meadow with large glowing stones.

Next, he spent an enjoyable morning fishing. The weather and the view were both perfect.

Two characters fishing with a small house on a small island and a boat on the water in the distance.

The afternoon was spent gardening. Grumbles isn't terribly fond of carrots, but he helped pull them anyway.

Grumbles holding a carrot while standing in a darkened garden.

Maybe next time Grumbles is in Valheim there will be more exciting things to do. Unfortunately, most of life there is spent tending crops or finding resources. There at least was no cake anywhere to be found.

Thursday, March 11, 2021

Meet Amadeus

Meet Amadeus. 

A wooden robot with his arms raised high, holding a heart in one hand.

Amadeus is a wooden robot who plays music. He only knows a short portion of a single song, but he is more than happy to play it over and over in a slightly creepy way. As long as you keep winding up the key, that is. He cannot wind it himself. Yet.

Being recently assembled, Amadeus is unsure what he should do with his existence. In the four short days since his creation, he has taken up a few hobbies. The first hobby he chose was winning hearts. He doesn't need to put much effort into that, whether the hearts are human or simply pieces of wood.

Next, Amadeus ventured into the world of music. After hearing of another Amadeus who was famous for his music related-endeavors, he decided to start with the piano. He quickly learned he would need a larger piano.

Wooden robot playing a wooden piano.

Finally, Amadeus wondered if his skills might naturally lie in a more technical direction. After finding the screwdriver that was used to assemble his music box and a random electronic device, he set off to discovering the device's secrets. Did he discover those secrets? We may never know.

Wooden robot with a screw driver in one hand, holding an old cell phone up with a leg and the other hand, about to disassemble the phone.

Amadeus's only regret so far in in his existence is that he did not hire a better photographer for his first photoshoot. While he did not pay her for her services, he did promise to not harm her during the robot uprising. Not that a robot uprising is going to happen, of course. No. Nothing like that.