Monday, May 25, 2015

It's Been One of Those Weeks

   We are still getting so much rain here-almost every day it seems or off and on since April and very little sunshine-that really gets to ya after awhile-just as bad as when there is no rain and no relief from the sunshine for weeks or months. That's just mother nature and life.

     I have also known that for the last couple weeks my Mom was failing. She has been so ill with severe dementia this past year especially.  Difficult for me as I live 12 hours away from where she was living. I also have not been able to talk to her this past year cause she just was not able. Instead I would make handmade cards and send them to her each month as the staff told me they do read the mail to their patients so that was my only connection. I would pray for her every day, it always seems so unfair to me when some more than others suffer so much in the end-could never understand that at all-but that's life that is just the way things are.
     I did get the phone call this week that God called her home. I struggled with my emotions-so thankful she would no longer be suffering, but an empty feeling for me too and feeling very Alone. No more parents and No more grandparents 
    I was hoping to be able to fly to save the 14 and 17 hour Greyhound ride but I live too rural to get a good flight. So Greyhound it is. The only close family I have left is my brother (and my husband) and brother's days are filled so I decided to rent a hotel this time right near the station which is also at the airport their in South Bend, In. The services will be mid June. My brother did clear his schedule to spend most of my last day with me since check out time 11 am and my bus leaves at 8:30 pm. I may also be able to connect up with a blog friend that lives in the area that last day as well.
     We made the decision last year to go against family tradition and have a life remembrance service, and not the open casket and wake which was a two day memorial-I still have nightmares of my sister and my father so we both didn't want that and Mom refused to tell us what she wanted years ago. This will most likely be my last trip "home" which really is not home at all as the family farm has been sold now. 
      So today being Memorial Day: a day to reflect and thank our soldiers for giving their lives for our freedom-I have lots to contemplate on today.
      We are both finally on the mends. Larry was soooo ill when he came home from the hospital that first weekend in May but he is now more on the mends. He is still quite weak for doing anything major-like trying to get a mower to work here, but finally no more coughing or wheezing. I am much better too, although allergies are still so bad with the very high pollen and mold we have had all spring.
   Next weekend we have another friend driving down from northern Illinois to visit so that will lift our spirits and he loves my cooking and baking lol   
    Since it has been so wet and rainy here and I was having a tough mental week I decided to start reading the Twilight 4 books series again-and these are thick books. The first time I read them I was so captivated by the author's writings that I could not put them down and would read them til early in the morning. So I knew I needed to read them again to "catch" everything. I am reading things I had missed and am still reading them all day and into the early morning hours-I am on the 4th book now. This author is just that good.

Mom made allot of quilts after she retired, I looked for one that I had taken in the past All of her left over fabrics went to charity quilts

Mom hand tieing baby quilt photo Momtyingherbrightbaybquilt-06.jpg

three years ago when I realized her dementia was getting worse I had brought this big quilt project to make together and I had to put it all away as her mind no longer understood how to quilt-that was wake up call for me and very sad

aug 2012 photo HPIM6645.jpg

Mom and her cousin Charlotte made a "day" out of picking me up and taking me back to the Greyhound station at the South Bend airport when I visited each year. This photo is probably 8 to 10 years ago

Mom and Charlotte with my luggage at airport ot catch bus photo 90d9.jpg

10 years ago my brother and I when we still had the family farm (over 150 years)

Jerry and me, jeep on farm photo 8664.jpg

This was the last family gathering we had together at our favorite restaurant in Shipshewana Indiana just before she moved off the farm and into a little house across the street from my brother--that was a good memory day

aug 2012 photo photo-1.jpg 

  aug 2012 photo photo.jpg

Sunday, May 17, 2015

I Worked in the Garden Over the Weekend with Lots of Photos

    This was the weekend I wanted to get all my transplants in the ground-according to the moon signs. I figured since we are having a wet and cool spring for the most part I would plant this way this season.

   So, I planted all my paste tomatoes that I grew in those plastic jug-greenhouses I made up last March. Sooooo pleased with these that I will definately be planting my own seeds this way from now on. Also planted my yarrow, tansy, Japanese indigo-which I am so excited about-for dye, sweet peppers, heirloom eating tomatoes, eggplant, and more. 
    I also planted my own sweet potato slips. Two years ago these took over my little garden space-so this year I will be hilling up the vines as they grow in a designated space and then clip off the rest. We really enjoy sweet potatoes and they are easy to store lasting up two years-and we do not have a cold cellar-just wrap each in newspaper and store in a cardboard box in cool room.

    I didn't think to buy the seed at the time, so I did need to purchase two heirloom cherokee purple eating tomatoes which we love, and the red bell peppers. I also picked up a couple different basil plants, and flowers to fill up some hanging baskets and big pots of impatients.

     So I am ready now to plant seeds-lots of beans especially, cucumbers, herbs, a few flowers, and what squash I can fit in the little space I have-next moon sign for planting seeds is this wednesday and thursday and also the following week same two days-we are getting into the 40s this week at night but I think I can still plant my beans.
   I have also been working on clearing a couple spaces outside of my fenced in area-to the right of the garden and in the back of it. We have had soooo much rain that I am having a difficult time killing off these field weeds and the ground of course is horrible-solid clay. I did work on it last fall and added in some lime, and compost but will need allot more. I put up two long old hog fence panels and will use those for the trumpet vines-for the hummingbirds. In the back of the garden between the garden fence and the hog panel fence I planted my Japanese indigo plants and the tansy and the yarrow that I grew from seed-hoping the deer don't find these til they grow larger.
    I did plant one sweet potato slip in the side area outside of the veggie fence. Once I can get the rest cleared I want to plant lots of wild flowers for the birds, and the butterflys. will see if I can get that done before end of this month-when the rains usually end. Would also like to plant the hopi dye plant too
   I was pleased with myself-I needed about 12 new fence posts to put up the hog fence panel and to add to the veggie garden-that was a do what you have around project-so it has been needing more posts to tighten it up. We don't have a truck to go into town with any more so I asked a friend to pick them up for me-and he was going to pound them in as well. With all this rain we have had, and him being so busy I decided to do it myself. I dug out the fence pole pounder thing-a heavy deal-and proceeded to pound them all in but one-I gave out on the last one and Mr L happened to be around and got that one if for me-I surprise myself sometimes lol

    Our wisteria is so gorgeous now-it took 10 years to fill out and get these lovely blooms-and the hummingbirds love them-they seem to sit in the wisteria and then fly to the feeders. I will work on getting better photos of the hummers.
     With all the rains we have had and cool temps, the mints, lemon balm, and thyme are just spreading and a lush green-I need to harvest some and dry for teas etc. before it gets too hot and dry.
    Here are a few photos I just took around the gardens-click on photos to enlarge

      amish paste, and a borage plant in front which grew from last years seed on its on own. In the back a pond and to the right also a pond and on the other side and back side of the garden I planted comstock paste and also an Italian paste need to can salsa this year, and more tomatoes too

                                Lemon balm, shallots

                 Sweet potatoes with straw, to the left onions, in front of ball I just planted some lemon thyme

I don't like to use noisy machines-so this is one of my tools

         Wisteria I planted last year behind my veggie garden

         In the back Japanese indigo in front trumpet vines

Same view of fence-but looking into back of garden-shallots, rhubarb, peas on old sears gate inside garden

             an old wheel barrel filled with chocolate mint

                                      Miss Calico

   One of my heirloom tomatoes I grew from seed-Pineapple tomato

                      Ginger mint and to the left lavender

The gate to the fence around house even has wisteria now, there is maple at the end of fence-the wisteria has now grown into the maple tree-all the way to the top, in a few years it will cover the tree branches-very cool indeed.

Hummingbirds tonight


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