Big Lucy

Hey, Folks!  What’s that wimpy green gecko got that I ain’t got?

Saving Dragons

Lucy’s July Fourth Portrait

She has been with us for two months.

She is eleven inches long and very wide.

She is officially a juvenile dragon.


Actually, Lucy is a Lucifer.

Lesson #1

When you choose names for pets

that are not dimorphic

Choose gender neutral names

if it matters to you.


This sad photo was filed under the title, “Day One”.

I thought this little creature was so cute.

That’s all I knew about Dragons.

What I didn’t know is that she was horribly dehydrated.

She was malnourished.

The bend in her tail was symptomatic of MBD (Metabolic Bone Disease)

Caused by a calcium deficiency.


The supervisor of the exotic animals at the chain pet store

Told me to feed mealworms as you see here.

I had no idea that they have virtually no nutritional value

and the exoskeleton causes impaction in dragons.

Crickets have little nutritional value unless they are gut-loaded before feeding.

She didn’t mention that when she sold me the crickets.


Of course, I assumed that Dragons drink water.

The display at the store contained a bowl of water like this one.

Dragons do not recognize standing water as something you drink if you are a dragon…

You must either drop water on their noses or mist them a couple of times a day.

Dishes of water in an enclosed terrarium cause respiratory illness.

Dragons are desert animals who require very low humidity in their habitats.

Bearded Dragon Manual

Of course, I ordered the definitive Dragon manual.

And I began to search the Internet for information on dragons.

I was so confused that I was in a panic about what to do.

South Texas Dragons

Then, I found Joe Cattey of South Texas Dragons

Joe lives in San Antonio which is about 100 miles from Victoria

Just a hop and a skip in Texas.

Joe told me what to do.

He supplies Lucy’s Dubia roaches which are high in protein.


Joe told me that Lucy was dehydrated and instructed me to soak her in a warm bath

for 15-20 minutes several times a week.

Dragons have vents (Cloaca) like parrots

They absorb water through their vents.

As soon as she was well-hydrated, the shrunken skin disappeared.

One problem solved!

Lucy began to gain weight

And one day she shed her old skin.

She was healthy and growing at last!

Dragons require specialized care.

Most pet store dragons die within the first year.

People, like me, think they’re cute and take them home

To die of loving neglect.


Meet Little Lucy.

She is tiny, malnourished, and has MBD.

She was half-price, and cold and wafer-thin and starving.

I brought her home today.



Fed her all the Dubia roaches she could eat!


The Way of Seeing



Look for what you know

And you will see what you expect to see.

Expect nothing

And you will discover the magic and the mystery of life.

The Blessing


Charlie, you may squander the harvest

But you must treasure the seed crop

For therein lies the source of all new beginnings

This post, titled Euphemistically Dead, was published in The Woven Tale Press

I liked their presentation and the layout of the piece.

The online magazine features great work from some very talented artists.

I appreciate their including this post and featuring it in one of their

Weekly Peeks.

A warm thank you to Sandra Tyler and to the rest of the staff!


Humans have a real problem with dead.

Euphemisms abound to describe the state in humans.

We don’t refer to other dead things with quite the same measure of delicacy, however.


As long as stuff stays stuck to the thing it died on, it’s dead.

When we chop it off, stick it in a vase, and bring it indoors,

Dead-as-a-Door-Nail stuff magically becomes Dried.


I am fairly certain I never heard anybody say of a dried flower arrangement,

What lovely dead flowers!  

These roses are the newest of the dead stuff.


I kept a fair number of dead things for years.

I still have this Yucca fruit.

Most of them got too dusty and were thrown out, however.

The oldest dead thing I have now is an open cotton boll.


It looks exactly as it did the day I broke it off in the field

Some twenty years ago

I figure I saved it from a rather inglorious end

 In Q-Tipdom.


And, of course, there is the seed pod sarcophagus.

The mummy inside is a bit fragile

But the empty sarcophagus will survive for years

Assuming that some over-zealous housekeeper

Doesn’t mistake it for rubbish.

(I chuckle to think of the comparison to archaeologist-grave-robbers, fancy coffins, and dried corpses)


A friend gave me this little Silkie chicken egg.

I kept it in the refrigerator for several years.

One day, I discovered that the chick inside had apparently mummified.

Now, when I shake it, the inside rolls around like a large marble.


These stamens probably won’t dry into anything recognizable

But, unlike all the fuss surrounding Napoleon’s shriveled part,

Nobody will care one whit.

This post was inspired by a book I am reading that chronicles

The misadventures of famous dried, uh, dead people.

Rest in Pieces, The Curious Fates of Famous Corpses

By Bess Lovejoy



Bromeliad Leaf Characters


Today, I love these characters!



Who knows.

I might not see the characters at all.

Leaf characters are elusive, you know.



Amaryllis Leaves & Bud


Amaryllis Leaves


Umbrella Leaf


Regina Iris Leaves

(A bud is forming on one)


Baby Asian Elephant Ear Leaf


Bromeliad Leaf


The Fan Cactus is not a leaf


I included it as evidence that it is still alive and well!


Life in the Garden


The Clematis blossoms dried

and remain on the vine

interesting still in the straw version of themselves


Romero sheared the Foxtail Ferns to the ground

As he promised, they sprang from the soil

into mounds of green Foxtail forests.



The leaves of the Bromeliads turned brown

in the winter freeze and

I thought they were dead

Suddenly, a blossom appeared from the ruin


The Bird’s Nest Ferns

with their leather leaves

are spilling over their pots

in a kind of celebration of the coming summer


The Pintas are busy making new buds

and blossoms too


New leaves spring up like green Seahorses

from the centers of the ferns


And Miss Lily has returned

to make the garden her own.


To the tune of Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds

~The Beatles~


Miss Lily has been my photographic nemesis

for years.


When I got my first camera,

I tried to photograph her, with little success.

There was a problem with light and color

and all of those green stems in her center.


I haven’t had much more success in recent years.

There is just something about Miss Lily

that doesn’t like my camera.


Last year, I gave up the struggle and

simply watched her bloom and retire for the winter.

I was convinced that my first photographic subject

would forever be my worst.



This year, I enjoy watching her through the porch screen,

and I photograph her sometimes in the afternoon light.

We have arrived at a truce of sorts in which I make no demands

and she usually refuses to smile on my efforts.

I continue to reach for that Miss Lily portrait that lives in my head.

Perhaps, one day when the stars decree it.



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