We found the most beautiful flower on our walk today! It was right along a busy road, where we have been dozens of times, but we had never seen it before. It’s not very common here at all, so I feel solucky!
Veronica persica, Persian speedwell. The flowers are about four times as large as the common sort I found last week. Isn’t it the most gorgeous colorever? Like a little piece of sky that fell down into the grass. Hee hee hee! It’s almost enough to make me change my favorite color to blue.
The humans seem to be enjoying themselves well enough. They are certainly taking lots of photos, and the female has even had to be told sternly once or twice not to get so close to the DLAs. Sigyn, though, is having the time of her life. I had no idea she was so interested in ancient cultures, but the squeaking has been pretty much non-stop.
Yes, my love. The kitty herding the geese is funny. No, I do not think we should get some geese for the Terror Twins to play with. Geese bite.
The jewelry seems to hold a special fascination for her.
Yes, my love, it is very beautiful. Do I think it would look good on you? Well, the colors in that collar certainly go with your outfit, and I’ve no qualms about getting you anything you might desire, you know that. However, those earrings are longer than you are tall, and the collar probably weighs at least eighteen of you, so I think you might want to explore some more petite options.
The Horus-headed collar, again, displays some exquisite workmanship, but it is still on the large side. The girdle would go around you six or eight times.
Perhaps I’m not making myself clear, my sweet.
Sweet Sif on a Cracker. Very well, my love. I will steal acquire this lapis, carnelian, and faience pendant for you.
When Sigyn catches on to the fact that it does not and will not fit her, she can always hang it on the wall. Or maybe I can come up with a miniaturization spell…
(The human female likes to make antiquity-replica jewelry for Yule presents, and I know she’s taking notes. Somehow I think she’s not going to be able to recreate anything here, which fills me with a mean sort of warm fuzzy feeling.)
Now, this bowl is also finely crafted and could make a useful addition to our home.
Who wouldn’t like to have something extra-fancy to eat popcorn out of? And see?
There’s a little gold pitcher for the melted butter! Beautifulandpractical.
Great Frigga’s Corset! My ears! What’s Sigyn squeeing at now?
“Loki, come look! There’s a whole case full of ancient Egyptian stuffed animals! They’re so cute!!”
Oh, Norns save me… She must have been absent the day they covered mummies in school. Quick, Loki, think of a way to get her out of here before she reads the display notes!
“Um, yes, Sigyn! *So* cute! I guess all the plush has decomposed over the millennia, but absolutely you can tell that someone loved it very much once upon a time. Maybe there will be a stuffed kitty in the gift shop with all of its fur on. You’d like that, wouldn’t you? Let’s go look!”
Whew. That was close. The gift shop, unsurprisingly, does not have cat stuffies—furred or otherwise—but there are plenty of books and ornaments and other overpriced gew-gaws. Sigyn is happily looking at everything and mentally redecorating our room in Early Pharaonic.
Wait, where’d she go? Oh. Oh.
“Oh, woe is me! Oh, I shall have to make a journey to the underworld, for my beloved has died and lies in a silver sarcophagus! Let me weep and shave my eyebrows off, for my sweet Sigyn rests now with Osiris!”
“You know, it would be a lot more convincing if you weren’t giggling.”
The humans are still mired in the ongoing home-repairs resulting from last year’s bad weather and subsequent mishaps. The workmen finally came to fix the fallen-in garage ceiling (where something heavy fell through the sheetrock), and while they were there, the humans had them fix the places in the living room where the tape-and-float and plaster work at the top of the front wall had come undone in a Most Unsightly Manner. (The roofers stomping and pounding and dropping things up there didn’t help any, and there were plaster bits missing in several spots.)
The plaster repairs looked awful in progress, but the end result was satisfactory–except for the fact that all the work was nowhere near the color of the walls and stuck out like six sore thumbs. At this point, I suggested to the humans that of course they could do the paintwork themselves, and there was no need to hire someone to do it! After all, they painted the whole house when they moved in, didn’t they?
And thus, we find ourselves today at the Do-It-Yourselfatorium to purchase paint and painting accoutrements. There are so many colors of paint to choose from! Sigyn, of course, thinks we should go with something in this part of the spectrum.
That is lovely, my dear, but have you considered how timeless, how classic a good deep green can be?
The human female is always saying she’d like to live in an English country house. Well, woman, I can’t think of anything that says, “Library in the Manor” more than “Fresh Arugala” or “Soccer Pitch” (Why do paint colors all have such ridiculous names? And why couldn’t they spell “Arugula” correctly? And if it’s an English country house, shouldn’t that color be “Football Pitch”? But I digress.)
If you don’t want dark green, you could opt for something from the Nausea Collection.
Great Frigga’s Corset, the humans are boring! Being being frugal cheap misers, they originally painted the living room in plain, untinted white, thinking that it would make any future repainting easy to match. And here we go–one gallon of plain base white flat interior latex. (I think that needs a few more adjectives.) Now we just need tools and whatnot.
Mind you, I am fairly certain that there are painting tools in the garage at home, but finding them could take years and cost dozens of lives… (The side of the garage the humans had to clear to allow for the ceiling repair got cleaned out and thoroughly sorted and looks great, but all the painting stuff is on the other side, the one that scares even me…)
My sweetie wants to know if we can please get this “cute little mini roller.”
Sure! Put it in the cart. The humans are paying. If it doesn’t get used for the walls, I’m sure it could see duty in the kitchen, applying an even coat of melted butter to toast.
(a bit later) Trim brush, rollers, paint tray, painter’s tape, and one of those spongy little dabber thingies. All set!
Far be it from me, however, to let opportunity slip away. I want to see what other potential mischief supplies are here.
This looks promising.
Pro Tip: Whenever you can’t think of any other crimes to commit, sticking something to something else that it shouldn’t be stuck to is always good mischief. In this case, 200% stronger than regular mischief alone.
I am confused… There is such a thing as paint hardener?
Do mortals actually harden leftover paint before disposal? Do they not just use it up by graffiti-ing rude words and crude naughty drawings on available vertical surfaces (preferably the walls of their oafish brother’s rooms)? Or is that just a “me” thing?
I’ll ask again—are we absolutely certain that there isn’t something that needs sticking to something else? Because they have duct tape in all sorts of non-boring colors. Three guesses who wants what.
All right. I think we may be done here. We have paint, tools, and some good ideas for future mischief. Sigyn, are you ready to leave?
Sigyn? Did anyone see where she went? She was right here a moment ago!
More pretty stamps have come in the mail today! Stamp days are the best days, because all of these envelopes from far-away places come stuffed with the most beautiful flowers. And in February, when it’s cold, we need all the flowers we can get, right?
Sometimes the stamps on the envelopes are as nice as the ones inside.
My friend doesn’t collect mushrooms, but this is a lovely one anyway. I love the color! I’m not sure how it made it through the post without being cancelled! Wasn’t that lucky?
I couldn’t tell what these stamps were…
…until I realized they were upside down snow-cat vehicles and not little cottages with very smokey chimneys. But since they’re for Antarctica, it’s appropriate that they’re upside down! Hee hee hee!
This envelope came all the way from Serbia. And the sender put yellow flowers on!
And also purple ones!
We can soak those off and put them in the album. Bonus!
“Loki, come look at the other stamps on this envelope! They’re gorgeous! They look like little icons!“
“Religious icons or computer screen icons?”
“Church ones, but they’re sooo pretty!”
“No thanks. You know that sort of thing gives me hives. But you go ahead and enjoy them.”
Loki is missing some great art!
I think maybe they are from Christmas and Easter.
All in all, a very special envelope!
Ово је најлепша коверта икад послата поштом!
But what’s inside the envelope?
Loki has no problem with the contents, but I’m afraid he’s not as big a fan of vegetable stamps as I am.
Aren’t these just the most beautiful stamps ever?
Red berries! Fruit! APPLES!!!!!
I know that I’m supposed to be very careful around stamps and not handle them except with tongs, but it’s all I can do not to hug all of these!!!
The whole house party has wedged itself into one car for a short trip to the local Asian Market. We were here back in September, but there is always something good to be found in a shop such as this. The human female is in search of the black sesame cookie-crackers she hasn’t been able to find anywhere else. I’m just here to poke the rice cakes…
Sigyn has immediately zeroed in on a stack of bright red bowls,
though this mug with owls has caught her eye as well.
The weather is definitely more hospitable than it was a month ago. The human female keeps herding us all outdoors for “walkies.” (The human male hates it when she calls it that and says he’s not a dog. I don’t get it–I think he’s making a popular culture reference, but I can’t be bothered to look it up.)
So here we all are, on the Neener Path, to see what–if anything–is blooming. I think I see some of the same plants as in our last Neener Update.
The goldenrod has grown tall and top-heavy.
That’s right, you virgate, paniculate composite! Bow before Loki, Lord of all Midgard!
The beautyberries are still very showy.
Many of the fruits have lost a good bit of their neon-ness–which is to be expected at this point, but still, nothing else is that color.
I am surprised. There are a few final, fleeting false foxgloves flowering.
That’s right, Sigyn, bid them farewell. They should have been gone by now and have overstayed their welcome.
The winged elms, on the other hand, ought to be thinking about coming up with some fall color.
They don’t have much to show for themselves yet. Sigyn is dangling hopefully and encouragingly. Another few weeks and some of the leaves should be good and schoolbus-colored. If not, I will Have Words with them.
The farkleberries are better at sticking to a predictable schedule.
Fill your eyes, folks. This is what fall color looks like around here. Some of the more seasonally-conscious branches have gone a deep maroon.
While others are pokier about selecting a new wardrobe.
And what’s with all the fruit?! They’ve been hanging there since May! I know they’re not delicious, but they are edible, and usually the birds eat them all up. Someone’s not doing their job! Add lazy avifauna to the list of entities I need to admonish.
The girl hollies are covered in fruit, much of it festively red, as is proper for November.
Sigyn likes hollies best of anything.
Gee, I simply can’t imagine why. Hmm. My sweetie is very photogenic. Maybe this photo should be the humans’ Yule card this year…
Here is her other favorite color. Campohorweed. Smells funny, looks nice.
Well, some of them look nice. That one looks more than a bit raggedy.
That’s better. Mind the barbs, my love. And remember that if you drop off on the far side of the fence, you are outside the Neener Walk and technically, trespassing in a reserved area. (The city has it set off for drainage–there’s a creek–and as remediation habitat for the rare Navasota ladies tresses orchids they destroyed when they developed a parcel of land south of the city. Not that anyone has ever seen an endangered orchid here…)
The late-flowering throughwort is all but past. Late-flowering it is indeed, but when it’s done, it doesn’t tend to hang around long.
It’s cousin, blue mistflower, however, has the air of a plant with plans to see if it can make it until Thank the Turkey Day, if not Yule.
The flower clusters are on such slender stems that even my beloved’s insignificant weight is enough to bend them right over.
It looks like something that should be in a garden. If the human female weren’t so bone-idle, she’d be looking for seeds to harvest.
And because she IS bone-idle, she’s decreed that the end of the path is the turn-around point of our walk today. I’m sure that, plant-wise, it will be just more of the same on the way back, but maybe we missed something and there will be Interesting Things to look at. We shall see.
I do soooo much mischief that sometimes I can’t keep track of it all and I fall behind in writing about it. No rest for the wicked! And sometimes it’s the little, not-especially-mischiefy things in life I don’t get down on paper. Or electrons. Whatever.
ANYWAY. This is by way of being a catch-up. None of this is recent, but it made Sigyn smile, so it’s important.
The human male came home one day with some enormous zinnias (plus some thistles) that someone at church gave him.
There was a red one AND a yellow one, so Sigyn was extra excited.
That right there is some pretty decent camouflage.
And one day, somewhat after the traditional equinoctial celebration, the human male came home from the oriental market with the biggest, last-chance-for-this-year mooncake Sigyn and I had ever seen.
It was enormous.
Could Sigyn and the human female eat it in one go? They were certainly willing to try.
(poke, poke poke.) The wrapper said it was filled with lotus seed paste. But I didn’t trust it, because I know that often there are other things hidden inside.
The human female, pretending she wasn’t going to eat all of it, cut herself a slice. (She wasn’t fooling anyone.)
See?! I knew there was something else lurking inside! Vindication! People really should learn to listen to me.
But what was the orange stuff? The human female took a bite and said she thought it tasted like egg yolks. Sure enough, she did a little looking online and learned that mooncakes are often filled with salted duck egg yolk. She and Sigyn didn’t care for it much and didn’t eat it, but they ate the cake and the lotus seed paste, all the while reading about Mooncakes and What Goes In Them. Apparently, the really fancy ones have two eggyolks inside.
Then the human female read how many calories are in one of these things, put her fork down, and turned a funny color. She and Sigyn by this point had eaten most of it between the two of them, so they shamefacedly put the rest in the cold box to save for another day. Sigyn, of course, doesn’t need to worry about her figure, but the human female is a different story. She consoled herself by thinking that since they didn’t eat the egg yolk and saved a bit for later, it was probably only million calories instead of a million and a half.
The only person who believes her lies is her, but then, she’s extra-gullible.
Anyway, we had two fall treats, one colorful and one sweet. Which brings to mind the ancient Chinese saying,
Sigyn is feeling better today, thanks in no small part to the human female’s mother’s cooking.
Every morning has started with a good breakfast. This is what she fed us our first morning.
Blueberry pancakes with REAL maple syrple and peppered bacon.
Last night, she cheered Sigyn up with fried rice, egg rolls, and spring rolls.
Sigyn really appreciated the sauce for the egg rolls, which was her favorite color.
No one made me a sauce in my favorite color. But then, I didn’t break my arm, and at least the soy sauce bottle has a green label.
It really is all about the food here. At breakfast, we are asked about what we want for lunch. At dinner, we’re reminded that there are cookies and ice cream and about four dozen options for breakfast. The human male and female have even pitched in with a will. They made tzatziki to go with the Greek meatballs for lunch, and they are planning fish tacos for one of the nights we are here.
And when we aren’t making food or eating food or talking about it, we are shopping for it. There are one or two things the human female’s mother needs, and Sigyn and I have tagged along to see what a different market looks like.
I am pretty sure the market back home doesn’t stock… this.
And I find that I am absolutely okay with that.
Oh, now this is neat! The human female’s mother has taken us to her local Asian market, since she needs to purchase some more of her favorite Korean coffee. Such places are always entertaining to look in, and this emporium is exceptionally well-stocked, well-organized, and very bright and clean.
Sigyn has found something she wants to try.
Evidently the pale pink sort we have at home is not brightly colored enough.
She also thinks that these look “fun”:
Dearest, did you read the fine print on the package? They’re not actually that color, and I doubt they have smiley faces.
The human male has acquired some ramen,, along with some dumplings to prepare for the human female’s mother to try later in our visit. The human female has seized upon a package of these. Are they cookies? Are they crackers? I don’t know— and neither does she, though I think she has hopes that they will taste like the sesame cookies the human male’s former student worker’s mother made for her once.
Uh oh. I can feel it coming on. I have been very, very good all day and the urge to do some mischief is just bubbling up inside me. I’m not sure I can control myself. . .
No trip to a Big City, be it north, south, west, or east (Have we done east? I do not think so…) is complete without a trip to the Large Market. The human male likes to buy their ginger-apple juice, and the female is always on the hunt for new apple varieties.
I have seen to it that there are no new apples today. There were going to be, but I had the produce manager hide them in the back.
Sigyn is excited because she has never seen a “real live yam” before.
She has made friends with sweet potatoes before, which people in this part of Midgard often mistakenly call yams, but this is her first encounter with the real thing. They’re very large, but she’s not afraid at all, my brave girl.
Odin’s Eyeptatch! Sigyn, come over here and look at this! There is a veritable Fungal Festival going on here today! One whole display is nothing but chitinous Basidiomycetes. The bright yellow oyster mushroom is certainly eye-catching.
The plainer brown variety is a little less startling in its coloration.
(poke poke poke) Mushrooms feel so weird.
I do not know what this kind is called.
Looks like a pile of wood shavings, doesn’t it? Here’s another anonymous mass of mycelia:
And in case one is unable to choose, the emporium offers a thoughtful assortment box.
That would make a very good hostess gift. “Here you go–I brought you a box of expensive mixed toadstools. I know they don’t work with your dinner menu, but you have to eat them within a day or so or they’ll go all limp or get moldy and you’ll feel guilty. Enjoy!”
Hmm. I wonder if I could persuade the human female to buy a box for herself? I could sneak in one of these:
Sigyn has wandered off, attracted by the bright colors in another display:
Dragonfruit. And gaudy they definitely are! They come in yellow…
…as well as a pink that is an abomination unto mine eyes.
Dearest, are you certain that food should be that color?
She certainly is a bit of a magpie, attracted by all sorts of bright and shiny things. This soap, for instance.
It is certainly…colorful. I wonder–as you use it, do all the bits wear out at the same rate, or do the little chunks fall out as the matrix wears away? I might have to do some experimenting. Also, if this stuff is made in a loaf and then sliced, Why are no two pieces alike? I have the feeling this is going to be keeping me up nights…
We are nearly done here. The human female has found her favorite tortilla chips and the required gummy octopus-shaped candy. The male has found his juice and a few other tidbits. It is certainly not as much fun here as it was in the days when they were giving out samples around every corner. Get yourselves vaccinated, people! I want my samples back!
The only department left is the floral section. Sigyn, as could be predicted, has gone straight for the most colorful bunches, in this case some huge, waxy Ranunculus.
If you were to look up “yellow” in the dictionary, there would be a picture of those.
How many Sigyn-volumes are there in one Protea? I don’t know, but I’m sure the number has a lot of zeros.
Some of the prepared bouquets are very pretty.
But I suppose I am a bit predictable myself. I find myself drawn to these hydrangeas.
They’re green, and I just know that if I could convince the human female to take some home, I could induce them to shed copiously all over the house. Bonus points if the felines eat them and leave petal-y puke… Hmmm.
It took a cup or two of cocoa and some serious cuddling to get Sigyn past her disappointment over not being able to order a snow leopard from the WWF catalog we looked at yesterday, so today we are looking at a more traditional catalog.
It’s the Bullseye Dog one. Sigyn likes it because anything that is not actual text or photo is bright RED.
Norns’ nighties! That beast has developed quite the case of hydrocephalus. He should have that checked out. Maybe they can put in a shunt or something.
This…thing… is apparently the hottest toy of the season.
While I applaud its taste in pendants, I hope Sigyn doesn’t insist on this. I think one childish, green entity in the household is enough.
This looks more promising.
I see my erstwhile half-sister (the one we don’t talk about) is included. I might have to buy this just to see if I feature.
Sigyn thinks the three-eyed aliens are “cute.”
Um, Dear, don’t you recall how sleazy the last three-eyed green monster we met was? Yeah, I don’t think you want to chance it.
Ooooooh! A blaster!
Looks like it shoots soft things, but still perfect for harassing the cats!
Ugh! Avengers, everywhere you look.
At least my stoopid brother Thor isn’t with them. But that bulky green fellow is here. Hmm. This one of him is inflatable. I could pop him with Gungnir and it would be most satisfying. Dog-ear the corner of this page, Sigyn. I might want to get one…
Ah–this is better.
“Wrath of Loki” I like the sound of that! Hmm. Maybe I *do* see the point of Legos after all.
I’m finding all sorts of things I like in this catalog. But we still need to find something for Sigyn.
Plush! Plush is usually a good choice. These are a little too “cutesy” for me, but if that’s what you want, I won’t gainsay you.
May I suggest the pastel rainbow winged pig-cow hybrid? It is completely ridiculous, but if you tired of it I wouldn’t mind punting it around the yard.