June Prey

I woke up in the middle of the night, as I am wont to do, and for who knows what reason thought of how in 1978, Mad Magazine made fun of General Hospital and called Luke Spencer “Puke Dispenser” and I giggled in the bed till it shook like I was Linda Blair. Then I let the dog out to pee.

Anyway, hello. I had an actually busy weekend for once and don’t have to create content out of the thoughts I had. Because that is so refreshing, like a mountain stream or Tide, let’s begin.

Chris and Lilly had a Whoooo-loween at their store, so naturally I schlepped out there to see it. Whooooo-loween involved these birds of prey hanging out on the hawk gloves of birds of prey experts, and I did not at all fall in love with each bird and want to marry them in a bird ceremony and be June Prey. I like how I just act like “a bird ceremony” is a thing. LOOK at this little muffin tin, up there! This is an Elf Owl and he makes his living cooking Keebler cookies. Oh my god I love his little head.

Chris and Lilly’s kids were at said birds of prey event, and one of them said, “Owls have big eyes so they can eat kittens.”

Here is Mr. Spectacled Owl and I made a spectacled of m’self as I hugged him and kissed him and called him George. Spectacled Owls imprint on people who care for them. I imprint on people who ignore me.

Here is a spotty kissy-head hawk, with yellow lips and cute clawses.

Anyway I loved them, and also I got a pumpkin while I was there, because it’s fall and you must display a pumpkin for no apparent reason.

I got the pinkish one.

On the way home, I looked for birds of prey stores where I could buy my own owl for my bird ceremony, but also I stopped at this gravel store I keep wanting to go to but their hours are June Works and June’s Asleep. In the South, there’s this trend that places open from 8 till noon Saturdays and not at all Sundays, because of God. * till noon Saturday can go fuck itself.

This time, for once, they were open. I really need more gravel in my driveway. My gravel has gotten sad and tired like an aging diner waitress. My gravel is Doris, the blousy diner waitress.

Anyway, they also had lawn stuff. The kind of lawn stuff everyone needs. Brighten up yer lawn. Say, hey, world. I’ve brightened up m’lawn.

The more I look at this one, the more I want it. Who is she? Why is she be-lipsticked? Where’s she going? I feel like something having to do with the Eastern Star. I think she’d really brighten up my lawn afterward.

As soon as I got home from gravelworld, from Gravel’s Bolero, my pal The Other Copy Editor came over and we sat on my front porch because no one can come into my home with their myriad COVID germs. Anyway, because it was raining, which it did all weekend in droves, we sat on my front porch, which means she got to see various neighbors in various states of drama. There is always, always drama here. It’s a sad day when I’m the low-drama house.

Anyway, then on Sunday Chris and Lilly and their kitten-eating children came over because I had bought two trees from them. They have a garden store, see, and for my birthday, my mother got me a dogwood. Then I got the other dogwood for myself. One is going to have pink blossoms, and one will have white blossoms.

I debated where to put them. At first, my idea was I wanted them to be in front of my walkway, so they’d form a canopy eventually. The house down the street does that, and it looks nice. It’s sort of convenient that all the houses look alike so I can steal ideas.

But when The Other Copy Editor was here, she suggested putting on on the corner of my house. Then I asked people on Facebook and they had ideas that had nothing to do with the two options I have. “Bulldoze your whole front yard, then get 7 more trees, and …”

Anyway as you can see it was raining. But I dug and I dug and I measured root balls and I planted and

Eventually I settled on the canopy idea and now I regret it. It just seems too busy now. Should I get rid of the flower bed? I’m not that good at growing flowers anyway. Take some bushes out? I’ve not been a fan of those bushes, ever, except for the camellia, which I adore.

What you might not know is planting trees in the rain is dirty work. I think it’s possible I have never been that dirty. I had to hold my phone with the edges of my hands and I still got it dirty. When I walked into my house, it was like that scene in Pet Cemetery where the wife comes back. What dirt?

Anyway that sums me up, and now it’s Monday up in here and I have to begin the workweek.

78 thoughts on “June Prey

  1. I have a lot of bird fear too but somehow owls are different. I enjoy watching the birds at my boyfriend’s bird feeders too. It’s those huge flocks of crows that creep me out. Skyrats, um, seagulls too. Ick.

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  2. The owls are beautiful. And I like the placement of the dogwood trees. On the subject of bushes- stay vs. go…. if you the photo of the house and use an erase or blur tool to remove certain bushes ?? I wonder if that could help you imagine how different the exterior might look.

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  3. I like the final placement of the trees. I think it will look especially nice once the trees mature. You will be happy both aren’t next to the walkway. The owls are gorgeous, too. We have several hooting in the big pines around our house but never actually see them. Great post. Thanks for sharing!

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  4. I have excellent advice—
    Leave the trees where they are and they will be gorgeous. Steal Elf the Owl, and hide him in the house until the people stop searching for him.
    Then the trees will grow a little. When they do, Elf can hang out in the trees because they will be a great place for him to spy on the neighborhood.
    See? Great advice!

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  5. Lovely post, Pretty June. I think the trees look great! Little kitten eater doesn’t look real, more like a stuffed baby toy aside from the deadly talons!

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    1. Also, your pumpkin is very pretty! Gourd-like and holiday neutral but still celebrating the season.

      I am the Ebenezer of our neighborhood. No one should be out so no one gets Halloween decorations! And it’s killing me because that’s the preferred holiday of the year in the household. 2020 sucks.

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    1. I have a lot of bird fear too but somehow owls are different. I enjoy watching the birds at my boyfriend’s bird feeders too. It’s those huge flocks of crows that creep me out. Skyrats, um, seagulls too. Ick.

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  6. Great post, June! Bigfoot made me laugh, but I just didn’t get here fast enough before you PANICKED that no one thought you were funny. (Heeeee! 🙂
    Owls are really cool birds. Plus they can eat a Tootsiepop in 3 licks!

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  7. Years ago I bought 6 dogwoods and planted them on the side of my yard and all but one of them died. But oh, the one that made it has taken over a whole corner of the yard. So I think it’s good that you planted them far enough apart that the have room to spread out. I love the statuary at the gravel yard, and wonder how you could resist Bigfoot or Frieda. Did you find some gravel for your driveway?
    Lovely post, lovely weekend, pretty June.

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  8. When I was a kid, the Hispanic family across the street had a jillion of those concrete statues scattered around their backyard and I thought it was the greatest thing ever and wondered why my parents didn’t buy fully colorized statues of Woody Woodpecker, Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, Mother Goose, Mary on the Half Shell, St. Francis and various squirrels and deer and other woodland animals to turn our yard into a Thing of Beauty.

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    1. It’s just like how when I was a kid, the girl across the street had this single mom who had a whole dresser with heads with wigs on them, and then on her bureau were all these nail polishes: yellow, green, blue, orange. Then I’d go home and all my mother had on her dresser was a bottle of clear Hard As Nails and NOT ONE WIG. I’d be all, How can she STAND to not have wigs and yellow nail polish?

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  9. Those were some weird statues. There is a place near my house that sells yard statues. I never really see anyone there shopping and I wonder who buys this stuff?

    Love the upcoming canopy of trees. Will be pretty.

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  10. Frida Kahlo statue looks like she’s doing her monthly lump check. If you got her you could put a pink ribbon on her and call it a PSA. Maybe get a tax write-off. In my mission to expose my granddaughter to classic movies, we watched Out of Africa a few weeks ago.(The hairdresser should have been charged with crimes against follicles). I had forgotten that Karen Blixen had a tiny owl as a pet, so as a fellow author, you are very much allowed a small pet owl. Cuter than Poe’s and Dickens ravens.

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  11. I’m impressed to pieces that you planted trees! I think they’ll be beautiful there. Cooking real food, planting things, why you are practically Mother Earth herself.

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    1. Just finished reading. Bigfoot in the parking lot made me laugh out loud. I have a number of small plastic soccer trophies to send if my kids will relinquish them (perhaps a dubious possibility).

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  12. The Biltmore here in Asheville has (or had, who can keep up these days) a falconry program where participants got to see and fly birds of prey. I did it last summer and it was one of the more awesome experiences I’ve ever had.

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  13. My gardening experiences tell me that it is always good to wait before removing anything. As the trees grow you can decide what else, if anything, you want to change. I always prefer an overabundance of flowers, shrubs etc. than a sterile, everything is neat and orderly appearance and not at all natural look. I like my house to look warm and inviting rather than like a dentist’s office, meaning easy to mow. Everyone has different tastes, so give it some time and see what you like next year.

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  14. I love owls! I love to watch their antics on the internets. Didn’t you have a dr. appointment on Friday? Did he/she give you any relief for your migraines?

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      1. June , Did you start drinking more water or do you think just threatening your migraines with steroids scared them away?

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  15. Bobbing for apples, huh? I suppose these days you have to stand 6′ apart with a mask on until it is your turn to submerge your head in water everyone else has submerged their heads and sputtered in. Yuck. Did any of you out there ever really enjoy bobbing for apples?

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  16. Dogwoods are ready beautiful trees, they bloom in the spring and turn a beautiful red in the fall. We had rain accompanied by tornadoes on Saturday night that required spending time in our basement, which was very stressful.
    Tee

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tee,
      While watching all of the tornado coverage, I thought of you and Beverly and hoped you were both safe. Thankfully, they fizzled out before they reached us or we would also have headed for the basement.
      Sadie

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Owls! Trees! Lovely post, lovely June. Thank you for scheduling your weekend in a way that gave us delightful pictures to look at on a Monday (it is Monday, right?) morning.

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  18. OMg, somebody else who appreciated Mad Magazine back when it was really Mad Magazine. I do a lot of remembering of past funnies and laughing to myself until my shoulders shake.
    I loved so many things about this post I wanted to share it with Distinguished but I don’t want him going looking for it every day and peeking in on my private everyday business with the Book. See what I did there?
    Owls eat kittens. Sigh. Sweet children growing up to learn the ways of this Owl eat Cat world.

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  19. A long time ago I volunteered at a wildlife clinic and handled birds of prey. All sizes. Those tiny owls? They are all I WILL KILL YOU AND EAT YOU but they weigh a few ounces and are all fluff and stringy muscles. And their talons feel like children’s fingernails, but you still have to be proper and wear the gloves. They are the best. The day you meet owls is definitely a good day!

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    1. Gretchen, I did the same. I could enter the cages of the golden eagle and the American eagle, and the barred owl and a couple of others but the barn owls bloody hated me for some reason. They were in a barn like structure and the moment I put myself through the barn door they would swoop down and try to talon me. Fortunately there was another person there they didn’t hate. Somebody who looks like me must have done them wrong cuz all I ever did was bring them “food”. On the reverse, I was the only one who could enter the falcon area without getting dive bombed. Birds distinguish.

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  20. I went to visit a friend in Qatar and they have falcon stores there. Shops full of them. There was even a falcon hospital. This reminded me of that.
    I think the trees look like they are in the perfect spot.

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  21. My first thought about the statue was Frida Kahlo similar.
    Looks like perfect placement to me and that you kind of split the difference in the two ideas you had.
    Your description of you coming out of the grave with all your dirtness, tickled me.

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  22. Those owls! We have owls here, but I’ve never seen a Keebler Elf owl or an owl with what appears to be painted on white eyebrows. He or she is so unusual looking. Glad you had such an entertaining and tree-planting weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. I agree with Kris in TN to trim down that taller shrub, unless you’re using it for privacy at that window. I agree as well with the “wait and see” – it won’t look busy when those trees are bigger.

    Did you see the owl’s legs? Did the handler lift up their feathers and such? I just learned last week that owl’s have long-ass legs. I just thought they were stumpy little legs and big feet for holding stuff, like bunnies and kittens.

    I think Love, Jimmie should ignore her neighbor. Shrubs can be a lot of work, and some people don’t want to spend all their time trimming and shaping and treating for shrub diseases and such.

    Speaking of shrubs, am I the only person who hats that razor commercial where three women are standing in front of small shrubs, crotch level, trimming them? They finally stop showing that commercial and the manscaper commercial comes on.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Before everyone all over yonder keeps telling me to trim that bush, so to speak, it’s a Camillia bush and it’s about to bloom. It will bloom again in the new year. So I cannot trim it yet.

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  24. I was outside with binoculars yesterday watching a hawk, I saw it get a snake, big excitement! The trees will look great there once they’re grown, they look good now too, they don’t look too busy. Those statues are awesome, I wish we had a place like that where we live. We got a pumpkin this weekend too, and either squirrels or chipmunks took bites out of it already! Little shits.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. I like where you put the trees. Don’t remove anything until the trees grow large enough that you get a good glimpse of how it will all look together. The only thing I might trim is the tall shrub in front of that right window, next to the porch. Trim it to the height of the shrub on the corner of your home. It’s going to look great when it canopies your walkway!

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  26. I have always wanted a dogwood in my front yard, and I’ve planted many. They have never made it but I am pretty sure I’ve never done it right. I have heard that you should always have two. They need each other, so let’s say you had a good instinct in getting the second one.

    I cut down some bushes in my front yard and my neighbor nearly had apoplexy. He said that shrubs and bushes soften the sharp edges of the house. I was really pleased with my work until he said that. Do with that what you will. I very much like clean edges, and shrubbery can get out of control. This is not advice, just commiseration.

    I like your pink pumpkin. I didn’t see any of those here or I’d have gotten one.

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  27. Dear June; I too, had an owly morning. I am very owly this morning. Yesterday I planted a whole raised bed of garlic cloves. Today there is an exploded minefield in said garlic bed. I am so owly. The destructive agents were either raccoons looking to repel vampires or owls looking for kittens. Can I say it again – I AM OWLY.

    On another note, your dogwoods look beautiful. May I give you a gardening top, watch out for raccoons and owls.

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    1. I am told I’ve had a raccoon on my roof, gnawing through a water line. What the?! On my long, long, long list of things I worry about or even need to worry about, there was nary a raccoon. Until now.

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  28. Did the gravel yard art place have a dinosaur, by any chance? I really, really, really want a sugar maple for the front yard, but the cost is whooooooooooooeeee! So we will continue to be the yard that makes all of the neighbors feel better about their yards.

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