|Me with my new Phantom helmet|
I made four skydives yesterday with my friends at Snohomish. The owner of the Drop Zone, Tyson, jumped with us on two of the skydives, and Kevin, the musician, joined us for three. Linny, Christy, and I made all four, with Donovan, another friend, joining us for three. Today, another beautiful day, will find Linny and Christy making up to seven more! I will not be traveling down to Snohomish myself, having gotten my knees in the breeze and satisfied my desire to play in the air with my friends.
Today I will work in the garden, as those of us who need topsoil will be using a borrowed pickup truck to get several yards of soil. DeWilde's Nursery, a family-owned establishment, is not far away and sells two grades of topsoil. Last year we hauled in four yards of something called "five way" that has five different components that help to loosen and enrich the heavy clay soil that occurs naturally here. How much is a yard? I found this on line:
When people refer to a yard of some landscaping material, they most often mean a cubic yard: a cube three feet high, three feet wide, and three feet deep. The retailer doesn't usually measure it exactly, but the scoop on the loader is approximately half a yard, and they give you two scoops for a yard.We will get at least three yards, each one weighing somewhere around 2,000 pounds, so this will qualify as plenty of exercise for the day. I want one yard all to myself but hopefully will have help shoveling it in. Although I've already planted some sugar snap peas, they are near the fence so they can climb and shouldn't be in the way of my new soil. Then I will design my plot and plant for the season. What to plant? This is my dilemma, since last year I learned some hard lessons about what I DON'T want to grow, so that I will not have to fight slugs and aphids until I am discouraged.
I learned that brussels sprouts and cruciferous vegetables in general are prized by all kinds of pests, while the green beans and zucchini didn't attract them. I'll probably plant half of my garden with pretty flowers and half with veggies. And this year I will weed much more often. I had the worst aphid problem of anyone in our garden because it was almost all cruciferous vegetables.
It's so rare for us to have blue, blue skies without a cloud for days at a time. Yes, we do have this happen for about a month to six weeks around the end of July through August, but this is a bit unusual. Yesterday reached the mid-70s and it will be even warmer today. A record-high temperature was set at the airport in Quillayute, WA, where the previous high of 76 was broken by six degrees (82 F)! I suspect more records will fall today and tomorrow. By Tuesday we should get a cloud or two, and those unbearably blue skies will begin to look more normal to my Pacific Northwestern eyes.
I'm a little sore from packing my parachute four times yesterday and hurling myself out the door of the airplane, as well as flying my canopy to the ground after each jump. I had good landings all four times, which is saying something for me. All in all, it was a wonderful day, and being completely well after having been so sick makes the beautiful sunshine all the more enjoyable. I can feel that my cheeks got a little pink from yesterday, so today I'll be sure to slather on the sunscreen before venturing out.
I know I'm fortunate to be able to enjoy the outdoors as much as I do, but I also know it's because I am dedicated to staying in shape and keeping my muscles tuned up for my active lifestyle. Not to mention eating right and watching my calories. It's interesting that I have no problem admitting my age to anyone who might ask, because I know that I am able to accomplish more today than I could when I was thirty years younger and took my good health for granted.
Well, after bragging unashamedly during this post, I guess I'll leave now and look around for my humility, which I seem to have misplaced somewhere. Maybe under my glasses? I'll keep looking. You know what they say about pride going before a fall...