Another week goes by, and I'm faced with another weekend in which to relax, do some schoolwork, and figure out what I'm supposed to be doing to improve my life. The first thing I hope to get done is to get a handle on our backyard. When Jack's mom was here last weekend, she and I talked a bit about various plants we could install and how we can begin to control our weed problem. Yay! So I have to get a giant thing of concentrated Roundup to kill the manifold weeds under our live oak (grass doesn't grow there because of the shade, and the weeds have gotten a bit out of hand since Jack doesn't mow there). We're also going to pull out the large tree-like weeds that are next to the fence we share with our General Mouton neighbor (as opposed to the General Ewell neighbor, since we live on the corner and have one neighbor on each street). We'll only do that second thing if the temperature this weekend drops below 80 during the day, which, after this week, is not looking very likely. We had 90-degree highs two days in a row. Ridiculous.

After we de-weed, we plan to put down landscaping tarp or whatever it's called so that the weeds will be thwarted but water can get through. Once that's down, we need to put down a bunch of mulch, and then we can plant hostas and bulbs. Jeannette directed me to a fabulous place to order bulbs, Michigan Bulb Company, and I've found an assortment of different colored tulips and also some Dutch irises to order from them. I can just picture those in patches among the hosta, and I can't wait to see all the colors! We won't order the bulbs for a little while yet, since they can go into the ground as late as November or December here, because I want to make sure we're actually going to get the other stuff done in preparation for the bulbs' arrival.

When we're not at Lowe's or working in our yard, I plan for us to be inside watching the first season of Babylon 5 on DVD, since I just checked out the DVD box from the public library. Babylon 5 is my favorite television show ever, and though I've seen every episode at least once, Jack isn't very familiar with it, so I must assimilate him. B5 takes place in the middle of the 23rd century on a newly-built space station whose main mission is to facilitate peace among many alien races, so the story is full of intrigue, cultural obstacles, interesting make-up effects, and philosophical/political arguments. My dad always said he thought of it as a political drama in a sci-fi setting rather than just a sci-fi show a la Star Trek. Whereas most television shows are episodic and have everything resolved after an hour, Babylon 5 features ongoing debates and wars, and there's an interesting question from the first season that doesn't get answered until midway through the third (so when it does get answered, it's a fabulous moment!). I just love it. I think that the unresolved aspect is what attracts me most to shows like that, which is probably why I'm so passionnate about 24 as well (since one day lasts for an entire season of the show). I heard that the series creator of B5, J. Michael Straczynski, envisioned the whole five-year story from the very beginning, so each season and, consequently, each episode, is a fleshing out of the story without losing sight of the bigger picture. It adds a great deal of continuity that I find to be lacking in most television dramas.

At some point this weekend, I also need to make a trip to the library for photocopying (ugh) and work on writing my Philosophical Inquiry paper for my research class. I've written my outline for said inquiry already, so my job now is simply to flesh that out with a bit of florid prose and the phrase "Therefore, the premise of this essay is that..." This is a big thing for my professor. She, like others I've learned from, is a big fan of using a catch-phrase like that in assignments so that (1) she'll be able to find the premise easily, and (2) we'll be forced to boil our argument down to a premise instead of hinting at it in several sentences. She admits that we shouldn't necessarily use phrases like that outside grad school assignments (i.e., in actual papers we try to publish), but I'm sure I'd get docked a bunch of points if I left out the essential "Therefore, the premise of this essay is that..."

I made a fun trip to the produce place yesterday, and I was so excited about all my veggie finds (including huge red peppers for 99 cents a pound!) that I came home and promptly planned out several meals on our refrigerator white board. I didn't assign them to particular days or anything, but now I have at least six meals in mind that we have everything for. I get tired sometimes of planning dinners--cooking doesn't bother me, but trying to remember before I get home what we have and figuring out what I might need from the grocery store is a bit exhausting to do every single day. Every once in a while, I tell Jack that he's in charge of dinner, which doesn't even mean that he has to cook, just that he has to figure out what we'll eat. So having several complete meal ideas all ready to go is very exciting to me, especially since they're so enticing: spaghetti squash, okra, and baked apples; veggie sandwiches on bagels with soup; eggplant-ricotta rolls and whipped sweet potatoes; veggie omelets and grits; and fresh linguine alfredo with red peppers and mushrooms. I love cooking.

Bon week-end!

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