Friends, Then and Now.


Having and making friends as an adult is different. As a child, it seems to happen naturally, almost organically, wouldn’t you say?  As children we’re thrown together in heap, and left to sort ourselves out.  “You like gymnastics?”  “Me too!” Instant friends.

DSC_7751

I have been blessed with a few very good friends over the years, for that I am grateful.  But, I found myself sitting and wondering,  why was I was sitting alone on a beautiful saturday afternoon. I soon came to the conclusion, I only had myself to blame for that one.  I have chosen a life that requires me to be near home all if not most of the time, There are animals to care for, gardens to tend, stories to write and paintings to be painted.

DSC_7769

 

These are not things you can do anywhere. Granted, I could slip away from time to time. (I will work on that, maybe)

DSC_7767

I still feel the warmth of friendship, though I may not see them as often; lives change and family and responsibility lead us in different directions.  I suppose you could say we have grown apart. Grown separately, maybe. Growing apart doesn’t change the fact that for a long time we grew side by side; our roots will always be tangled. I’m glad for that.

DSC_7750

As Jane Austin once said, “There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends. I have no notion of loving people by halves, it is not my nature.”

My life is full, and I have no complaints, I enjoy my company.

DSC_7770

Time and commitment, now…this, this is truly my dilemma.

Be well,

Jess

 

By the Light of the Silvery Moon


A friend commented on yesterday’s blog that art sometimes brings music to her thoughts. I smiled a little bit, “cuz as I was downloading these photos, Doris Day started singing, well sort of, I started singing, hoping to sound like Doris.

DSC_7696

I thought I sounded wonderful; Diesel started howling, Lexi hid in the bathroom, and Finnegan covered his head.

Richard just asked to be picked up, he thought I must have been in pain or something, I guess.

DSC_7698

Here are some of the lyrics in case you want to sing along.

DSC_7699

By the light of the silvery moon

I want to spoon

To my honey, I croon love’s tune

Honey moon, keep a-shinin’ in June

Your silvery beams will bring love’s dreams

We’ll be cuddling’ soon (my favorite part)

DSC_7701

By the light of the moon.

DSC_7702

By the light, not the dark, but the light

Of the silvery moon, not the sun but the moon

I wanna spoon, not croon, but spoon

to my honey I’ll croon love’s tune

Honeymoon, honeymoon, honeymoon

Keep a-shinin’ in June

Your silvery beam will bring love’s dreams

We’ll be cuddling’ soon

By the silvery moon

DSC_7690

To be quite honest I only knew about a sentence and a half…I was delighted to hear the cuddling’ part.

DSC_7691

Now, back to work I must go; the kale is gathered chopped and frozen, the last of the peas are shucked and frozen, the garden is weeded, a painting is nearly completed, finishing up some of my new obsession, strawberry honey preserves.  I’ll share the recipe with you here: strawberry yumminess.

Be well,

Jess

Every bird has their duty.


Today I am sure no one needs to be told that the more birds a yard can support, the fewer insects there will be to trouble the gardener the following year.

DSC_7406

And, every gardener knows that every bird destroyed, and every nest robbed, is an unmistakable surge in insects, a struggle we know only too well.

DSC_7375

Gardeners and farmers have a personal interest, and a strong one, in the preservation of birds.

DSC_7249

The garden is a doorway to other worlds; one of them, of course, is the world of birds.

DSC_7416

The garden is their dinner table, bursting with bugs and worms and succulent berries.

berry thief

But, if you please, could you kindly leave me some radishes.

Be well,

Jess

Time


How much do you try to fit in those little shreds and patches of time between the usual things to be done.

DSC_7282

I tossed the laundry in to the basket, grabbed the bowl of pins. loaded up the washer with the next load then headed out to hang them in the sun and breeze.

Summer breeze

Summer breeze

 

Walking back from the clothes line out back near the far pasture; I notice some weeds in the garden. I stop to pull the few I noticed; as I pulled, I noticed more. The seeing, pulling, and shifting went on for some time. My back was sore, then I looked at the clock, I had been at it for 3/4 of an hour. I had missed the rinse cycle on the washer, no softener in this load.

DSC_7300

What continues to astonish me about a garden is that you can walk past it in a hurry to get to the next task at hand, see something wrong, stop to fix it, and emerge an hour or two later breathless, contented, and wondering what on earth happened.

DSC_7271

Do fill the cracks of time so tight you couldn’t slip paper between the minutes? Do you accomplish more when you think you don’t have enough time? 

DSC_7302

I have a list of things to be done a mile long. This list seems to the should haves, at the end of the day I wonder why I didn’t hem those pants (sorry Mike), why didn’t I trim the dog, (sorry Finn), why didn’t I trim his hair, (sorry honey).

DSC_7284

“What may be done at any time will be done at no time.”
– Scottish Proverb

I did however: weed the garden, hang the laundry, help Jenn with her knitting, do the dishes, make the beds, vacuum the rugs, feed the animals, throw the ball for Lexi, clean the chicken coupe, plan dinner, write this post, respond to emails, and its only noon! 

DSC_7280

“It is not enough to be busy, so are the ants. The question is, what are we busy about?”
– Henry David Thoreau

I have much to learn.

Be well,

Jess

 

Complication is an Understatement


It has been quite a summer, I don’t feel as though I am any further ahead than when I began.

I do suppose, our crazy, busy, complicated lives are very different, though much the same.

IDSC_7197

We try to keep it simple; life is a lot.

A lot of dreams. A lot of work. A lot of family and friends. A lot of expectations and a lot responsibilities.

Inevitably there is a lot of juggling.

DSC_7200

The juggling game changes from time to time, it moves from juggling your own needs with the needs of sick family member; their needs take momentary precedence.

DSC_7192

The juggling changes when a loved one enters your life anew. You welcome the ball changes.

DSC_7242

Life is never enough.

DSC_7205

Never enough time.

It flies by, try as  you might to capture it, holding it close so that it doesn’t slip through your fingers…then it’s gone.

Years pass, you hardly notice.

Wish as you might, they are gone.

DSC_7063

Never enough energy. There is always one more task to be completed.

Just when you think you’ve reached capacity, another undertaking manifests. You find a new spark.

You do.

DSC_7190

Would it be conjecture to say you feel the same?

DSC_7195

Accomplishing more than you ever thought possible.

Daring to dream of that which should be unattainable.

Be well,

Jess

 

 

Those moments.


I have been crazy busy, trying to get the gardens back in shape after the long, cold winter, and two seasons had passed by with little to no attention.

DSC_6938

What a job.

DSC_6815

 

I sheared a friend’s llamas and the goats are sheared; of course today is 50*.  I’m certain they’re questioning my motives right about now.

DSC_7043 DSC_7047 DSC_7049 DSC_7048

With a life so busy and full of to do lists, it’s easy to miss the pocket-sized moments of beauty and wonder, isn’t it?

DSC_6894

 

I need reminding, from time to time, to lift my head from my daily tasks ~ listen to the birds chirp their own particular warble…

this gives nesting a

this gives nesting a

Notice that one cloud, as it moves past the sun, beams radiating warmth on your upturned face.

reminds m

reminds me of Nemo..

Let nature take hold of your soul, breathe her in, fill your heart.

DSC_6961

 

Be well,

Jess

 

 

It’s Spring, Let’s clean.


The gardens of course. You didn’t think I was dusting, did you? ( I clean a bit every day, so no big spring clean for me.)

DSC_6306

Back to the task at hand. The gardens. (How quickly I am diverted). March weather was so fickle and was terribly miserable here in Upstate, NY. Not much could be done to tidy the garden, really it was mostly covered in snow until the last week end in March. No telling what havoc Old Man Winter has wreaked ’til the snow is gone.

DSC_6308

I have to resist, there is temptation to pull back the mulch protecting fragile plantings, eager to see any sign of new growth. The mulch, the protector, I so carefully lay before the frost, gives shelter from sudden changes of temperature and chilling winds, keeping cozy this fragile growth. It’s still winter here, essentially. The ground was white this morning. (If I quietly turn away, maybe it will take its leave.)

DSC_6309

(I thought of finding a more attractive picture, but this is really how it looks – ugly. Let’s keep it real)

Tempering myself, I’ll slowly remove the mulch as the days and weeks become steadily warmer,
I tell myself, it is much better to remove the mulch a little later than to remove it to early. I try to hurry Mother Nature, to no avail. I love Spring anyway.

DSC_6146

Don’t forget to clean out your birdhouses early before the birds begin nesting again. I haven’t seen the bluebirds yet, but others have.

While it will be awhile before the season of blooms arrive, my garden list is readied for season.  I can’t plant  during this early spring, (I haven’t even been able to get peas in the ground); I bide my time.

Maybe this weekend there will be enough of a thaw.

DSC_5822

Finn Remembers.

The frost line was very deep this year. Even inhibiting maple production) there are some chores I’ll do to get it in shape before the real gardening begins.

Give my old clay pots a wash; a good scrub using a solution of baking soda and water.
I’ll clean around and map out the area for new garden beds. (that may be a good job for the girls, they live for this sort of thing. Don’t you Simone?)

DSC_3758

Don’t let this photo fool you, they really wanna help.

DSC_4571

This is how they work, great team aren’t they?

While I’m at it, I should try to remember where I planted spring bulbs. Do you remember? You were there, weren’t you? If you remember, please share; I wouldn’t want to dig them up.

10007443_10203353467620559_6287382144033425848_n

I don’t think they were paying attention. Chickens can be like that you know.

Alternating thawing and freezing can tear plant roots and even force the plant right out of the ground. If I notice any plants that have heaved, I push them back right back where they belong – into the soil, and pack the soil lightly with my foot.

DSC_6187

Ooh we can’t wait for green, Revie and I. Of course, she’ll be more interested in nibbling than helping. But, who can blame her.

As soon as I see new growth,  I’ll divide and transplant summer blooming perennials and fertilize (with llama beans) the plants in there forever beds.

Is there a forever in gardens, nah, let’s just move on.

 056

Spinach, Chard, Cabbage, Cauliflower, and other hardy vegetables will be started from seed late in the month. Lord willing and the creek don’t rise.

DSC_4565

Well, come on girls, we have work to do.  Hey, wait; where are you going? Girls? Girls?

Be well,

Jess