Weekly Chat (Non-Osprey), 19 November 2023


I hope you all have a good week!

The National Weather Service has announced that the US will have a very strong El Nino winter. For the Midwest, that means a warmer and dryer season. Dang, I hope so. 

Right now, I have a fishing spider in my dining room and another one in my living room. Each is the size of my hand! They're happily eating the last of the summer gnats. We had an even bigger than normal population of gnats, mosquitoes, and biting flies this year. I'm letting the spiders enjoy them. They'll go hibernate under the house when they're finished. LOL 

Happy Thanksgiving or whatever you celebrate to Annette and bjane.

Hugs to all.

  • Thanks as always for starting us off Diane. Like you I let the spiders reside as I was taught to "let a spider run alive" etc.

    Ive been reading and enjoying all the posts but have had a quiet time and am enjoying not being asked to drive here and there. From next weekend things get a bit busier in the run up to Christmas. Thsi year I am putting my foot down and staying at home on my own Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. I will visit Son and family the weekend before and Daughter & co in the week in-between.

    Have a good week all and take care.

  • Thank you Diane for starting the week. I am not sure I could cope with two spiders the size of my hand. I think I would leave home! Glad that they are clearing up the flying insect population for you though.

    I have a problem with slugs and snails on my roof terrace. They must come in with plants from the garden centre. They are dining on my dahlia flowers. The blooms disappear overnight. When I catch the culprits, I relocate them on to a patch of grass by the bin shed. Most people (including my OH) think I am quite mad.
  • Harelady, I know what you mean about staying at home at Christmas. My family are fine with it, as they are very busy around this time work wise.

    A neighbour here has a very large family, and when she announced that she would like to sleep in her own bed at Christmas, she saw the faces drop!
  • Diane - thanks for starting off another week. I let my house spiders stay but they are not as big as my hand!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Harelady -it’s good to hear from you. I know exactly how you feel about Christmas and this year I think I will just go to join my sister and her family on Boxing Day. My sister doesn’t like it but I don’t think she understands what it is like to lock up your home and not be there over Christmas.
    Rosy - I went to retrieve 2 empty pots from the bottom of the garden on Friday as I had discovered more tulip bulbs which needed planting. The pots were both home to lots of huge slugs. I scraped them out into the garden and washed the pots. The tulips are now planted.
    The party for my great nephew’s 5th birthday yesterday was noisy and a lot of fun! He enjoyed it. I was shattered!!!!
    I hope Lindy and her OH had a great time with the family yesterday.
  • Diane/Rusty - Please ensure your spiders don't come anywhere near me! Especially those huge ones Diane mentioned ... I would definitely leave home!!

    Someone has just given me a lovely 'trough' arrangement with three hyacinth bulbs with buds just showing. They are going to smell WONDERFUL when they come out! What a lovely gift. They are now sitting on the kitchen window-sill, probably the coolest place for them. Not sure I will be able to delay flowering until Christmas, but I'm looking forward to seeing and smelling them.

    I know what you all mean about being at home at Christmas. I have changed my mind several times in the past few weeks, but have now decided I really need to be with the family rather than at home. Last year Christmas was surreal, my sister having died just a couple of weeks earlier. We were all in a daze, and just doing things for my great-nephew, then aged six. This year will still be sad, as will every year, but I think we should all be together. I will go down on Christmas morning, arriving in time for lunch - it's 140 miles away, so not exactly round the corner! - and come home early on 28 December. Hey ho - life is a compromise.

    We have had power cuts this morning - don't know why. My electricity was only off for about ten minutes, but the heating at church tripped the boiler so we had no heat. It's a big Victorian edifice - and was very cold. Brrrr. Macdonalds is next to the church and there were queues of cars trying to get in, presumably because they couldn't prepare breakfast at home. It's on a one-way system and it was chaos. I'm glad to have got home safely - with my hyacinths - and plan to stay here in the warm until the morning!!!
  • DIANE Thank you for the bit about your spiders. I am quite happy with the spiders we get here but not sure how I would feel if they were the size of my hand........and I have small hands!!!
  • Family left an hour ago. A good visit apart from Ms. D's Dalmatian puppy chewing a bit off my new chair covers. Managed to catch him in time before it got too bad, but really - shades of Lindybird's Bonnie and all she and her OH went through. Anyway, waved them goodbye and came back in to blessed peace and quiet.

    Diane: Hand sized spiders? Rather you than me. The only ones I've seen that size are tarantulas, which aren't likely to show up around here. Thank you again for starting us off. I hope you have a good El Nino winter and that the attendant rainfall won't wash us all into the sea here on the coast. :-)

    PatO: Re Christmas, I can understand your ambivalence. My sister died August 2022 and the UK family spent last Christmas together in a kind of unhappy fog. My niece wants my BiL to come to her home this year because she can't face Christmas at their house with just her Dad (her brother doesn't seem inclined to switch his plans with his wife's family at his place). My BiL used to transforming their house into a sparkling, warm and inviting place each Christmas, my sister would bake and cook and fill it with wonderful smells and treats and my niece can't bear the thought of such a diminished holiday there after all those years. It's a sad time for recently bereaved families. Maybe next year things will be more settled for you and yours.

    Meanwhile, hallo to everyone else and good luck to those afflicted with slugs and snails. :-)
  • Annette - Thank you. My sister was always the centre of Christmas celebrations. Although she couldn't do a lot herself from her wheelchair, she directed operations like a military exercise - and everything was always wonderful. Before she died last year she had made all sorts of preparations, even got some of the food into the freezer. Bitter-sweet memories. She was never much into decorations, but there was always a tree and the cards were artistically displayed. Last year we just muddled through, with lots of tears. This year my niece will be in charge and I'm sure we'll do as we're told ... My niece and her family are vegan, and Christmas lunch is wierd - but last year my brother in law and I had a 'proper' Christmas meal when it was just the two of us after Christmas! I imagine we might do the same this year ...
  • PatO: A 'proper' Christmas meal with your BiL sounds perfect and you can both raise a glass to your sister in appreciation of all she did to make it so enjoyable for everyone. :-)
  • Hey, folks. I don't think many of you have dogs. But I wanted to make sure that ANNETTE and LINDY see this, and I know some of your families have dogs. There's a mystery respiratory disease spreading wildly through U.S. dogs. The virus is unidentified and potentially lethal. If it's prevalent here, it will likely spread to the U.K. I just don't want any fur babies to get sick. Here's a good link. And you can Google for more info. The media are all covering it.