Sunday, 21 August 2016

Agastache 'Blue' and Bumblebee

"Agastache 'Blue' and Bumblebee", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2016

This drawing should actually be named "Agastache 'Blue' and Bumblebee for Michael" since I did the drawing at the request of my friend, Michael. Let me explain...

A couple of weeks ago, Michael sent me a photo of what appeared to be a flowering, spiky plant of the genus, Agastache.  Visible in the photo was a portion of one spike with a bee busily at work on one of the flowers.  The photo came with the question...  did I think that I would be able to do a drawing for him of a flowering spike, including the bumblebee.  Since I love a challenge, I said "yes" and here, some days later, is the first draft.  

I have just sent a copy of this first attempt to my friend, Michael.  I will let you know in my next posting what he has to say about it and what kind of changes he may want me to make.

Now, here is just a bit of information on the genus, Agastache.

Agastache (also known as giant hyssop) is a genus of fragrant, flowering plants in the family, Lamiaceae. The majority of species are native to North America with one member of the genus being found in eastern Asia. 

Most species of Agastache are upright with stiff, angular stems clothed in toothed-edged, lance shaped leaves. Upright spikes of tubular flowers develop at the stem tips in summer. The flowers are usually white, pink, mauve, or purple and are very attractive to bees. Leaf tips can be eaten and made into teas. 

Agastache comes from the ancient Greek, ἄγαν, meaning “very much” plus, στάχυς, meaning “ear of corn”, so called on account of the multiple flowering spikes of the plant. Thus, Agastache is said to mean "many spikes".

Portions of the above text were taken from various Internet sources.


Here are a few new photos of Rònàn and Braden.  Enjoy!

Braden and Ro working on the wrestling routines.
"Hey, guys, wasn't Braden supposed to end up on top?"

Braden reads to his little brother, Rònàn 

Braden and Rònàn, brothers.



Here is the poster I made for
"Black Cat Appreciation Day",
August 17th, 2016
I hope some of you knew it was Black Cat Appreciation Day on the 17th of August and took a moment to say a kind word to a black cat of your acquaintance!

I did not even know there was such a thing as Black Cat Appreciation Day until I saw a posting about it on Facebook on the 18th of August!  So, obviously, I was not able to do something special for Suki on her special day.  I begged her forgiveness and told her that I have posted a reminder in my date book in the note section for 2017. Next year, therefore, I shall do something special for Suki on that day -- maybe even make her a turkey and gravy "cake"!

As for how Suki is doing otherwise, let me just say that she continues to manage reasonably well within her limitations. Let me explain...

Although she continues to jump up onto her favourite chairs and onto the bed, I notice that she no longer jumps up onto the top of her scratching post -- she used to love to sit there and observe her world from that vantage point. Nor does she ever stand on her hind legs and lean into the post to sharpen her front claws as she did for so many years. 

As well, I have noticed that she no longer tries to play with any of her toys, all of which would require that she push and chase while standing on all fours.  She will still play with a ribbon if I hold it over her while she is lying down, but she no longer even tries to jump up and grab things.  Even the little laser light cannot get her moving.  She will try to grab the light, but she does so while continuing to lie down.

So, while her medication appears to be masking the pain well enough so that she can do the basics -- eat, use the litter box and jump up onto the places where she prefers to sleep -- she still must be in enough pain so that she is unwilling to be any more active than is absolutely necessary.

I, also, continue to manage reasonably well within my limitations! At present, the levels of pain medication that I am taking do mask the pain reasonably well -- most of the time.  My doctor has recommended a natural sleep remedy which seems to be working reasonably well -- well enough that is so that I am usually able to fall asleep before my awareness of the pain takes over and keeps me from getting any sleep at all (those are very bad nights).

I continue to be able to move the computer mouse easily enough so that for a few hours each morning I can work on my art projects before the activity begins to get too painful. In the afternoon, I continue to be able to find new movies and TV series to stream which keep me lost in various stories, seldom consciously aware of the pain, until it is time for bed.  Thus my life goes on...

As for any special activities scheduled for me in the week ahead, there is only one -- an appointment with one of my many doctors for prescription renewals and follow-up.  Not very exciting, but necessary. Otherwise, it looks as though it will be a very normal and quiet week for me -- my favourite kind....



"Strive to enter through the narrow gate...", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2016

Jesus passed through towns and villages, teaching as he went and making his way to Jerusalem. Someone asked him, “Lord, will only a few people be saved?” He answered them, “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I tell you, will attempt to enter but will not be strong enough. After the master of the house has arisen and locked the door, then will you stand outside knocking and saying, ‘Lord, open the door for us.’ He will say to you in reply, ‘I do not know where you are from. And you will say, ‘We ate and drank in your company and you taught in our streets.’ Then he will say to you, ‘I do not know where you are from. Depart from me, all you evildoers!’ And there will be wailing and grinding of teeth when you see Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God and you yourselves cast out. And people will come from the east and the west and from the north and the south and will recline at table in the kingdom of God. For behold, some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last.” Luke 13:22-30

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