Not quite fall, not quite summer

The past few days, we’ve been in what is known as “false fall.” Though it’s still a bit warm for hoodies and hot beverages. Except in the mornings and evenings.

“Second summer” will be here soon, with temperatures heading back up near 90 by this weekend.

The leaves are still changing, and the hummingbirds and monarchs are still migrating regardless of what the weather does. I’m pretty sure our regular hummingbird is already gone. I left out the feeder for any that might be passing through, though they seem to prefer the zinnias and primroses. The butterflies are still really active, and I’m still seeing monarchs on occasion.

As for the harvest, it’s basically over. Blackberry season is done, and I’ve started pruning back the massive wild blackberry bush (to the detriment of my poor, leather-gloved hands … I now have a grabbing tool to pick up the thorny debris I am trimming off). The tomatoes are almost done for the season.

I’m focused on collecting flower seeds right now. I made up several packets of marigold seeds for next year, and I’m currently collecting zinnia seeds.

My zinnias bring all the butterflies to the yard. And these super cute skippers, too.

I do have a lot of lemon balm, so I’m experimenting with that. I made lemon balm pesto a couple days ago, which I mixed in with some chicken and rice I cooked for dinner. Not sure I will make that again. It was rather labor intensive and dirtied up a lot of dishes. And I only made a half batch. It took A LOT of lemon balm just for that.

In other news, I got my second COVID booster on Monday, which completely wiped me out yesterday. I’m still recovering somewhat. I mostly feel OK now, but my sleep has been messed up by it. The symptoms hit overnight on Monday, which kept me awake. I slept all afternoon yesterday. And I had trouble staying asleep last night. So I’m still a bit out of sorts. I’m trying to get caught up on household and gardening chores, but I’m being gentle with myself again today.

I decided to get the COVID booster now because I’ll be at a wedding next week. Mom and I are driving to South Carolina — we’re leaving a week from tomorrow and taking two days to drive down there. It’s going to be a bit of a whirlwind. We’re coming back on Sunday, unless I decide we need to stop somewhere for the night on the way back. That’s a lot of miles in a really short amount of time! I could use a change of scenery, but I would have really liked to extend this trip and make a vacation out of it.

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