I'd love to be out there gardening...

 Did you both miss me?
Dog and Cat

I'd love to be out there gardening, honestly I would, but it's far too wet. I'm just back from a weekend adventure, and judging by the size of the driveway puddles it's been continuously raining cats and dogs on the Moosey Garden.

And apart from missing the real cats, and the dog, our wee holiday in Hanmer was fun. Non-Gardening Partner and I went for a Saturday hike up the ridges and almost climbed Mount Isobel. But the clouds started rolling in, so back down we went. The hot pools afterwards were a great reward, as was the rugby - Canterbury's Crusaders won.

Sunday 19th May

Rusty the dog isn't home yet (Non-Gardening Partner has just gone to get him from the kennels) and our dogless house seems so empty. The cats have slowly returned - big Fluff-Fluff was hidden up in the garage rafters, miaowing cautiously. Once he'd made positive identification he hopped down (so light-footed for such a big cat) and came into the house. Fresh pet meat? Oooooh goodie!

 She always looks grumpy.
Histeria the Cat

Ah yes - we all have tummies full of food, including Lilli-Puss on an armchair in her cat lounge and young Minimus back in her cottage. Ginger Percy is relaxing by my feet, and Fluff-Fluff is on 'his' seat as close to me as possible. Histeria is on another chair, scowling - but that's just her natural face!

+6Tiger my senior cat, having waddled around checking the cat bowls, has now found my goose-down jacket and is 'endorsing' it's cosy qualities. I miss my cats when I go away. And here's Rusty the dog, home again! Whoosh - he runs right past me. It's far more important to check the food bowls, apparently, than to say hello. Oh well.

 Others in the Pond Paddock are changing colour too.
Autumn Liquidambar Tree

While I Was Away...

This always happens! Something I've forgotten to notice suddenly changes dramatically. This time its the Liquidambar tree by the house fence. It's gone all green and gold.

 The flowering cherry tree in the Driveway Lawn.
Autumn Leaves to Rake Up

All the flowering cherries are suddenly golden and colourful, each with its own beautiful carpet of leaves on the lawn whispering politely 'Rake us up, please'. But it's too wet, far too wet...

 In front of the crab-apples.
Hypericum Flower

Monday 20th May

I'm going swimming in the fog (that looks funny - don't worry, I'll be in a proper pool). And then I'm bringing home some potting mix with which to 'rescue' hundreds of assorted flower seedlings. They've self-sown in the gaps of the house path pavers, and I don't trust them to survive either the winter frosts, or my weeding policy.

The garden is really damp, and the bigger colour-scape is changing to its winter drab: green, brown, dull red and yellow. Now big Phormiums start to dominate - my goodness I grow a lot of these. And is it my imagination or are they very much bigger than last year? It's the time when the colourful toadstools growing all over Duck Lawn are even more magical than usual. I think things might be progressing towards winter.


Lucky. I've found some hyacinth and tulip bulbs stashed in the back of the garage. They're planted. And some daffodils, which I've popped into Pond Cottage's garden. Young Minimus is 'sulking' inside - I can't find anything that's sore, but she's not her usual self. I suspect Histeria has given her a hard time while we were away.

The 'Clawing Order'

There's a complicated pecking order - or should that be 'clawing order' - in out cat family. When big Fluff-Fluff is in a bully mood he leaps athletically on ginger Percy. Percy enjoys annoying his sister Histeria. She loves to garden-ambush Minimus, and Minimus used to mercilessly chase Little Mac. Aha! What goes around comes around!

 A smallish, roundish grey cat.
Minimus my Cottage Cat

And where is Tiger the tortoiseshell, senior cat, in this clawing order? She'll be slipping quietly away from the action and swinging her belly over to the fridge. Just in case there's a chance of food.