A week in summer time…

I tell you what, a week in summer goes by so fast! We are moving and eating and soaking up sun. Lately we- more often than not- opt to leave the dishes, the laundry baskets, the paperwork, etc., and swap it all for more time on outdoor projects, a few more minutes in the backyard before dark, or a late-night talk on the front porch with a dear friend. It’s summer! It’s fleeting, and although I never like to be too hot, I do feel like this time needs to be soaked in and savored in preparation for colder times in our future. Not that cold weather is really even that close, but still. It will come, and it will feel like forever, and so I’m trying to have less complaints about heat and more gratitude for summer clothes and sandals and an icy cold drink… 

You know how I’m allergic to peas? Oh, how those little buggers have tormented me. I can’t even really think about a spoonful of the things without inspiring memories of my chest tightening and my throat itching. Anyway, growing peas out at the farm has been an interesting and, I think, healing experience for me. Growing these beautiful plants give me a lot of pleasure, despite my rocky history with them. 

 
I love their color- a perfect green with little white flecks throughout. I love their flowers. So orchid-like, coming in different colors. I love their sweet lily-pad like leaves, their twirling grabby tendrils, their translucent pods… But most of all, I love watching people eat them. I know that there is just nothing like something fresh from the garden. I don’t know what these little snap peas taste like (it’s been too long!), but everyone says they are just delicious and crunchy and sweet. They all get excited about them. And it doesn’t make me feel envious of their ability to eat them, and it doesn’t make me curious to taste them… It just makes me happy that they can enjoy them. 

 
You know, they remind me of so many things in life that are painful and confusing and that feel unfair. There is always a purpose and a value in everything- and if we can’t see it, we probably aren’t looking from the right angle. Those little peas? They’re growing on me.


 

Our garden. Yes. We are chipping away at projects. We are going to be included in a local garden tour thingy in a few weeks, and that is definitely good motivation!
 
I moved those pavers from the failed asparagus patch. Those crowns were all dried out and just dead. I’m just going to try again next year, no big deal. So, the pavers have a new home around the berry/rhubarb/horseradish patch, and they are looking very nice. It was the exact amount of pavers that we needed, too, which is just… perfect!

 
I find, in all our projects and stuff, that it really helps to be flexible. We change most of what we do, which feels okay these days. We are really enjoying the process, and watching how everything evolves. Because really, how much of this life is truly within our control? At best we are artists, doing our best to influence and piece together what we’ve got. When it comes to this little homestead, we’re just letting it take shape. I find that if I’m too tied to a product, it will almost always disappoint me. Just like the strange shape of our little garden, it was not meant to be the mandala shaped vision that I sketched out when we first began. It had to be molded by the late afternoon sun falling behind the thick maple tree on the west side of the yard. Anyway.

 
Horseradish is happy, and about 4 times the size that it was when I planted it. I’m excited because I really love horseradish. If you can’t see why, then you should probably try mixing a ton of it into some softened cream cheese and then used as a dip for potato chips. Oh yes. It’s like the best dip ever. Yum.  

 
Here is the old asparagus patch, which is now being reshaped (again with the sun’s permission) and turned into a proper strawberry patch.

 
Then we’re making a new bed just to the west (we’ll move the sandbox), in another little full-sun patch, and that will be the future home of the asparagus. But, for this year, I think I’ll fill it with flowers and herbs.

 
These new beds are filled and mostly planted. I can’t wait until they fill in with green.

 
 
My children are completely delightful. Asa is starting to use baby sign language, at 11 months just like his sister did. It’s so stinking cute! To see a fat little hand signing "milk" or "water" is just so fun. I don’t know why more people don’t use it. I wonder if people don’t know about it? Anyway. He’s awesome. He’s starting to say more words, too. He says "Mama" and "Papa" and "Ba ba" (buh-bye, with a wave… so cute!). He’s exploring all sorts of noises, too, and volume levels… This house can get to kind of deafening place when he’s in the mood. Man, can this little boy squawk. 

 
Almost one. It’s hard to believe that we’re coming up on a year with this little one.

 
Tomorrow I hope I’ll have time to tell you about Vera, and a few other projects in the works. 
 
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