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Morning birds

I love seeing birds around. There aren’t as many rainbow lorikeets here as in my old house — a few only occasionally, though I hope to remedy that — and I do get magpies carolling, which is such a lovely sound — but on very chilly mornings the deciduous tree out my back bedroom window has birds (mostly doves) sitting hunched in the top branches where the morning sun first hits, soaking up the first bit of warmth. They do this every morning there is sun. 

When I opened the blinds this morning, the sun was just hitting the top branches and there were three birds. I went away and made a cup of coffee, and when I came back there were eleven. It’s a bit hard to see them — I took the photo through the window and the fly-wire screen — but seeing them is a small morning pleasure. 

Milly, however doesn’t agree — she considers that tree her property, and any birds interlopers. As for the black cat that often sits on the neighbor’s roof washing itself in the sun, looking smugly down at my dog . . . 

The gift that keeps on giving

When I first moved into this house, when it was still a mess of boxes and unpacked chaos, my friend Deb dropped around, bearing two plants she’d propagated herself.  Zygocactus, or as many people call them, Christmas Cactus. (But since they flower in late autumn early winter here and Christmas comes in summer, I don’t call them that.)

A few weeks later the first one started to flower, this gorgeous soft pink one. Up to then, the only flowers I’d seen were on my mum’s plants, which were all the same, a kind of hot pink. I liked these ones much better.

I kept them indoors until they’d finished flowering, then put them out on the deck, where they get whatever the weather sends them, including rain

Now, a year later, the pink one is in flower again, so I’ve brought it inside. I know that when it’s almost finished flowering, the red one will begin to bloom. On these grey and gloomy days, the splash of color is such a joy.

They’re very easy to propagate, I found. Last year a couple of the little links fell off the red one, and I poked them into a bit of potting mix in a little pot, and they’ve grown and it looks like they’ll even flower this season. Another friend has expressed interest in the cuttings.

I’m now keeping an eye out for different forms and colors.

Do you propagate plants? What’s your favorite?

More about the Perfect Kiss

Just a reminder — from 3rd June to 9th June the e-book of THE PERFECT KISS is on a Bookbub special, costing $1.99 instead of the usual price of $7.99

If you’d like to read an excerpt of THE PERFECT KISS  click here. It’s the hero and heroine’s first meeting.

And if you’d like to see some of the images that helped inspire the story click here. And see the snippet below.

The stairs
I’d written about the stairs with the dips made by generation of feet long before I found this image on the web.

One of the primary schools I attended as a child was quite old — one of the earliest built in Victoria, my state — and I was fascinated to see the dips in the steps made by generations of children climbing them.

It gave me a small thrill each time I fitted my feet into those dips, thinking of children more than a hundred years ago doing the very same thing. So I put them in THE PERFECT KISS and much later was thrilled to see this image of a cathedral with the same sort of worn stone steps.

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