My second batch of mail-order plants arrived today, from Bluestone Perennials. It was a fine bunch of plants (they always send good quality), and I spent a pleasant bit of time planting them a little while ago. This year I ordered a quince bush ('Cameo,' which should have peach flowers early every year), a baptisia ('Twilight Prairieblues'), lady's mantle (Alchemilla mollis), variegated Solomon's seal (Polygonatum odoratum variegatum - what a mouthful, but it's a great shade plant), achillea ('Walter Funcke,' with coppery-peachy flowers), gaillardia ('Amber Wheels'), and a clematis ('Silver Moon'). Bluestone always sends a bonus - this year it was extra of the achillea, so I was able to put it in two places in the front yard - sweet!
The storms blew through last night, and the weather has cleared with a whoosh - it's sunny with high clouds, and quite breezy this afternoon. It's a good temperature, in the low 70s, and delightful for being outside. Thankfully, that's where the kids are. They NEED to be outside and active after all that rainy, cloudy, gray weather. (They also NEED to be out of my immediate space. Too much togetherness can be a stressful thing.)
Safety Guy is playing outside with our neighbor's young son, who is about 3. SG is a magnet for young kids - they just gravitate to him, and he loves playing with them. He'll tolerate things from them that he would NEVER have put up with from his own sister or older cousins, and they adore him. (His youngest cousin, not yet 2, can do no wrong in his eyes.) He's also started volunteering in our church's toddler nursery. It's a shame that we've already had to talk with him about child molestation (that's part of the Cub Scout and Boy Scout "curriculum," the awareness of sexual abuse and how to avoid it or report it). It's also disturbing that we know we'll have to tell him that some people might not want him to watch their kids someday because as a young man he might be considered unreliable, a possible pedophile, just because he wants to work with children. It makes me sick to think that that's part of our world, that inbuilt suspicion of young men, and it also frightens me that our son could someday be hurt by someone making a false accusation against him, just because he has a gift for engaging with little kids and enjoys their company. (It's no wonder there are few male elementary school teachers - who wants to work under that cloud?) Safety Guy has said that he'd love to babysit someday, and we did let him take the Red Cross Babysitter's Course last summer, but honestly, we're not likely to encourage him to babysit unless we know the family extremely well, and they know him. It's sad, but that's the way it will have to be.
Sometimes this world stinks.