|The Meiji shinto shrine in Tokyo|
At the end of October Greg and I flew to Japan for our honeymoon. We had one full perfect day in Tokyo under our belts when I got a call that my brother had passed away unexpectedly in his sleep. He was 42 and an exceptionally good human being. We are completely devastated by the loss of him. I think almost everyone knows this already (and you've all been so nice, thank you for that) but I'm posting it here for those last far-flung friends of mine who don't have a Facebook account. (Which is so annoying, guys. Everyone is on there; please get an account already.) In-person social interactions are exhausting and I can't handle talking on the phone, so I find myself very grateful for social media, which has allowed me to interact with the living without getting out of sweatpants or this fort I've made from used kleenex.
I am also grateful for my mahonias, which are bright, cheery beacons in the winter.
|Mahonia x media 'Arthur Menzies'|
|Mahonia x media 'Charity', which bloomed for the first time!|
And this clematis, which I put in the ground in July, forgot to water, and thought I killed. It defied me by blooming through a hard frost and some of the heaviest rain we've had. Thank you Xera, for growing bullet-proof plants. This one is evergreen, turns bronze in the winter, and blooms November through February. I planted it outside my kitchen window where I can appreciate the hummingbirds covering it.
|Clematis cirrhosa 'Wisley Cream'|