Thursday, June 18, 2015

Barefoot Gardening in the Rain

     I've been trying all day to get myself and some of the kids out into the garden today, but the day was just getting away from me.  And I was kind of ok with it, at least subconsciously I was stalling a little bit because the sun was shinning so bright and I really don't like to work out in the hot sun.

     So, when I finally decided to stop everything that we were doing inside and gather the last minute things that we needed to take to the garden, I walked toward the front door and just before I reached the door, the rain just came pouring down!

     "Noooooooo!"  I said.
Rows of tomato plants.

     It has rained everyday for the past month and a half, and I am not kidding! 

     And I'm really not complaining either, I'm not.  I was just ready to start digging in the dirt and now I have to wait for the rain to stop, again.

     Oh, how I love this gardening thing!  I didn't realize how strong this burning desire has been inside my soul all these years.  It has been bottled up in me for the past 20 years or so and I can't stifle it anymore.  If I do, I will pop!  I want so bad to just get in there and get my hands dirty!

     The boys had work to do on the new fence project that we started and also potato duty.  Esther was going to help me plant, but now we had to wait.  It's a little hard to work in the garden in a downpour, don't you think?

     Oh, how I love the rain!  I love to be cooped up in the house during a rain storm.  But for the first time in my life, I was able to sit outside on my own front porch and watch and listen to the rain as it came just pouring down while the water was making its own little creek on our dirt road near the front of the house.  (Have I told you that the front porch is the best part of this house?)

     So for the next half an hour or so we sat on the front porch and talked while we watched the rain.

A few cabbage plants.
     The baby ducklings that were on the grass in the front of the house, jumped up into their bin and sat there just looking out as if they were afraid of a little water.  The bin was to protect them from the sun not the rain.  Silly little things, water is for ducks!  Shouldn't they know that?

     And then as fast as the rain came, it just stopped.  As the sun quickly came out again, I looked overhead a little to the South and the sky was as clear as could be with little fluffs of white clouds just moving ever so slowly past the incredibly bright sun!

     Well, sun or no sun, it was time to get to work because the day would soon be over.  So we quickly gathered up what we needed and drove to the garden which is about 3/4's of a mile away (thanks to Landon).

     And sure enough, shortly after we started to work, it started to rain, again.  But this time, we didn't care!

     Esther and I took off our flip flops and just worked in the garden barefoot as the rain came steadily down and kept us cool from what could have been a miserable afternoon.  And as for me, life doesn't get much better then this.

I was able to take some pictures between the rain drops.

Esther and a tomato plant.
More cabbage and Esther.
The sun peaking through the rain clouds.
Tanner adding insulators to the rebar posts.
Esther's garden selfie.
Tanner clearing the fence line.
Where did the potatoes go?
Barrett clearing weeds between the potato plants.
Cleared potato row.

      The Lord has truly blessed us as stewards of this place for this season in time.

Oh, and Cooper, well, he just kept on working, boots and all.  

June 16, 2015

Friday, June 12, 2015

Humble Beginnings

When I was first married, more than 20 years ago I purchased some strawberry plants and planted them.  Well, not having much experience with them, or gardening for that matter, I went ahead and just put them in the ground.  I really didn't think about where I was putting them or what type of soil I was putting them in.  I just planted them.  And guess what?  They didn't survive. 

I don't think that it was because the plants were bad, it was just what I did with them.  I think the location and the soil - clay - wasn't what the strawberries needed to survive.  
So they died.

And because they died, I resolved that I could never grow strawberries again. 

Well, then I moved to Missouri and found out that people really can grow strawberries and lots of them.

About 2 months ago, my very sweet neighbor, the Rancher's Wife, gave us a lot of strawberry plants.  So the next day, we planted all of them and watered them well.  And then the next day we watered them again and they were doing fantastic.

Then.................we went to a homeschool conference for 4 days and I totally forgot to tell my kids who stayed back (to hold down the ranch) know that they had to water the strawberry plants.  So when I came home, I found out that only about 1/4 of them survived.  I was devastated!!  Noooooooo!  How could I be so negligent!!  These beautiful plants that my neighbor so graciously gave to me, I killed them!!  Ug!

After a few days of feeling sorry for myself I decided it was time to forget about it and get over it.  There was nothing that I could do about it.  I had to focus on what was still alive.  
And that's what I've done and once again, they are doing fantastic!

"You don't have to be great to start but, you have to start to be great!!"
Zig Ziglar 

Our first and only strawberry of the season (so far)!!