Summer is officially over at our house. School has started, which means kids are back in a routine and I’m back in the office. Above pic is me celebrating the first day of school with a glass of bubbly at bedtime the night before.
Here’s what went on in August:
1) After a long bout with pneumonia, my mom was able to come visit! She and her sister, my Auntie Melinda, stayed for a little over a week. We celebrated Auntie’s birthday with coconut cupcakes (of course!), went to Belle Isle and downtown Detroit, and of course visited our favorite people at our favorite gardens.
At Detroit Abloom, Nancy showed us their butterfly cocoons.
At Julia’s farm, Willa Rose Floral, we wandered around the garden, played with Buju the cat and watched bugs and bees enjoying the flowers.
2) Dahlias were in full bloom in August. I only planted four this year in our front yard. Our backyard doesn’t get enough sun and although some do bloom back there, it’s disappointing to see the several plants that don’t make it.
This Alloway Candy did amazing. It keeps giving me bloom after bloom and they are perfect with their pinwheel centers.
This one, I think is maybe Diva? Bad photo, they are a deep purple-red vs. magenta.
My favorite, the Cafe au Lait. I thought I got a mutant one. It only opens part way. But after talking to Nancy, it sounds like several dahlia plants have done the same weird thing this season. One reason might be leaf hoppers, a bug she says she has seen for the first time this year and they may be injecting a virus into the plant.
However, this one is almost there. You can do it, come on!
Here’s another Cafe. Please, please bloom before the weather turns!
3) I wore a one-piece bathing suit for the first time since right after I had my baby number one (that suit had ruching all up in front and made me look ten years older and why I still have it in my closet, I’m not sure).
I bought a few several years ago when we’d just moved to Michigan. But, I never felt comfortable in them. Then, this summer of not working out prompted me to try one on again and actually I quite liked it. So you may be seeing more of me (well, less of me) in a one-piece in the future. Lucky you.
4) Yep, that’s yet another Tana French book, her latest, “The Witch Elm.” It was everything I love in a murder mystery – complex characters, a romantic setting (Ireland, an old house, a garden, a mysterious uncle), suspenseful with some humor mixed in. Here’s the original cover with the original title. Dumbed down again for Americans (WHY, people?!?). The actual species of tree is indeed spelled WYCH. I suppose someone thought changing it to Witch would make it more….witchy. But it just makes it stupid, now that I know the real title.
5) I read yet another Tana French book this month, her first one called “In the Woods.” I’ve been hesitant to read it because it’s about children who disappeared, but the book actually doesn’t even cover what happened to them, so it wasn’t too bad.
Here are the different cover titles I found online. The one I read was the first one. The last one with the tagline “something is waiting” is again super dumb because the book wasn’t even about that and we don’t even know if something is or was waiting. “Lyrical and haunting” however, is completely accurate.
6) Guess what else I found while looking for book covers online? A TV series based on the first two books. Coming out via Starz this Fall. Can’t wait. Although….pretty sure the girl detective was blond? Oh well.
7) As you may know from my June List with a Twist, I confessed to you that I am obsessed with true crime. I still can’t figure out why, because I am the scardiest scaredy cat you will ever meet. I’m sure a psychiatrist could explain it to me and I’m quite curious to know.
Thanks to my girlfriend Liz (who is coming to visit soon OMG!!!!!!), I am now obsessed with true crime podcasts. I started listening to them for our NY road trip and now they are my background soundtrack when I go for walks. Finished Dirty John, the first series of Serial and In the Dark (recommended by my friend Megan) which was incredible investigative journalism and won several awards. One of the cases made it all the way to the Supreme Court, due to all the information the team uncovered.
8) Speaking of investigative journalism, it’s a little known fact that this career was high on my list of during college and afterwards. Same with photojournalism. Why I went into PR instead, is because my personality would never allow me to ask the hard questions, never allow me to get in the trenches (figuratively or maybe also not figuratively). I’m just not that brave. Above photo is an actual photo of me working up the nerve to photograph a stranger.
9) I do have what it takes to take portraits and this month I did a couple senior photoshoots. One took place in an amazing mid-century home not far from where I live. I’d gone to an open house earlier in the week and fell in love with the light. My gal was into theater and drama and was up for anything.
My other shoot was at the DIA and the lines of the building and metal sculpture made for such beautiful and fun backdrops.
Senior pictures are NOT what they were back in my day. I need to have my mom dig up one of my senior photos, you will die.
10) More about that house where I photographed. It was built in the 50s by a couple who was into Hollywood glam. They enjoyed the home for several decades before selling to a woman who passed away a couple years ago. The home was sold, but no one ever moved in (I did hear someone say at the open house that the person who purchased the home intended to restore it) and now its for sale again.
I almost didn’t contact the realtor to ask if I could have access to the house, because once again, too scared. But I did and she could not have been more gracious and kind, meeting me there to let us in and back again to lock up when we were done. The chances of someone buying the home to restore it are slim to none, but here’s holding out hope.
11) Detroit Abloom is hosting its annual celebration of the season next month. If you are in the area, please stop by!
12) And finally, the tomato plant that came home with my daughter at the end of fourth grade last year that I said would never grow in our backyard, but go ahead and plant it anyway, just don’t get upset when it dies because you didn’t water it and don’t cry when the bunnies and squirrels have at it, has about a million tomatoes on it. So there.