May was about being outside as much as possible. We appreciated every warm, sunny, mosquito-free day in our garden, in others gardens and on our deck.
My main project this month was acting as Chair of the Newark Arts Alliance Garden Tour. I did my best impression of a responsible adult to keep the event and the people on schedule and informed. I think the event went well. It was a very warm day, we had almost two hundred people tour six local gardens and everyone seemed to have a good time. Andreas and I led the garden hosts around to each other’s properties at the end of the day. Even though they were hot and exhausted, they were in good spirits and enjoyed sharing their garden knowledge.
Our own blooming garden has transitioned from tulips and azaleas to peonies and roses. The ferns and hostas are filling in the bare spots and the view is lush and green.
Our second garden across the street is growing well. We’ve harvested some radishes, the tomatoes, cabbages and peas are getting taller and the flowers are starting to bloom. Andreas has all of his strawberry plants in the ground now and I think we’re finished digging and removing sod until next year.
This spring the cicadas emerged after 17 years in the ground. They really like our area of town. We didn’t see any in the gardens on the Garden Tour, but they are everywhere here and singing loudly. I like them a lot, I think they’re fun to photograph and they provide a lot of food for birds and other creatures that eat insects. It is a little gross to go for a walk, though, because it’s impossible not to step on them.
I was focusing on outdoor art projects this month before the mosquitos come. I’ve made eight stepping stones for clients, a few for us and painted a bird house for a Newark Arts Alliance fundraiser. I continue to take on more private students; some of the older ones have been vaccinated. My studio needed organizing and a good cleaning after having it to myself for a year. Andreas helped me build some extra shelving and it’s much nicer now.
My Bremerhaven portrait series moved from the café to my friend Thom Thompson’s photo studio. He’s already sold a painting.
Andreas had a busy month working on a paper, helping his graduate student prepare her thesis, gardening and working at another election. It’s also rhubarb season, so we’ve been enjoying that in pancakes every Saturday.
Now that we are fully vaccinated, we are slowly coming out of the house and enjoying the things we used to. We ate indoors at a restaurant for the first time. Andreas walked in, opened his arms and announced very loudly and happily, “I’m vaccinated!!” We are also having friends over occasionally and eating at the same table instead of distancing.
We have new neighbors across the street and a new neighbor hiding behind our trees eating Andreas’ favorite plants that he shoos away with his coffee cup. Ha Ha, all is well here.
All photos by Dragonfly Leathrum