Tag Archives: Garden

This is Me…Cutting Down on the Garden. Hmmmmmmm—May 20, 2024.

We are in a flurry of activity around here, getting the garden ready. We are weeding, planting, hoeing, watering, setting up sprinkler systems…all the things that need to be done. I promised myself that I was going to cut down a little bit this year, since I’m working so many hours. I have had limited success with that! It’s just so fun to plant things.

I have some spinach coming up in this raised bed, There is lettuce in there as well. The bed behind it still has not been cleaned out. I’m way late on some of my chores around here!

I have spaced the tomatoes much further apart. I can walk between the rows much better than I usually can and I hope it is easier to hoe and harvest.

There are only 3 rows of peas instead of the 6-8 I usually plant. My carrots came up very sparsely, as did my beets. So…..those I actually need to plant over again, I think. I finally have been able to get some lettuce to survive. I had some small plants Rob started in the greenhouse that are taking off at last, and some seeds did come up and escape the slugs’ voracious appetites after 3 tries.

We did not plant anything in the very back of the garden. We didn’t do corn at all, anywhere, and there are much fewer rows of beans than normal.

There are some seeds in the ground in this raised bed that have not come up. There are a few tomatoes against the fence and the remains of my strawberry plants. They aren’t doing super well, for whatever reason. We shall see what happens. That’s part of the fun of gardening….the anticipation.

I have been out in the garden early and late…whenever I can spare some time. Even with cutting down our planting, we still have a pretty big garden! I’m excited to finally have the weather dry off enough to get out there. It’s been a long spring for us here and I’m eager. I’ m almost done planting, and I can’t wait until it really starts to grow and produce.

As Rob prepares to be gone for almost 2 weeks to Kenya, he has been scurrying around here setting up the sprinklers in the garden, making sure the lawn mower has gas for me to use, setting up the automatic lawn sprinkler system, and a million other things. That lawn system required some work as we had a couple of broken sprinkler heads and some sprinklers were overgrown with grass. We just got that done this weekend, and just in time. After incessant rain for weeks and weeks, it dried off and didn’t rain a drop for quite some time, leaving me to water every little plant with old milk jugs, watering cans and the hose….let’s just say I’m super glad it’s fixed. We ran a round immediately and saved me quite a bit of time.

Rob leaves on Thursday. He will be working with kids in Sunday Schools (300 at a time, we are told), orphanages in the evenings (150 at a time, they say), and doing some work with agricultural projects during the days (not sure exactly what that will entail–time will tell). We are both super excited to see how it all unfolds. Prayers are much appreciated!

Thriving In My Thrifty Week–April 21, 2024

We finally emptied the finished compost bin! This has been a process I’ve been working on for a few weeks. Malcolm loves to help me. When I said I was going out to dig up the compost heap, he yelled, “YEA! Let’s go!” Some compost went on 2 raised beds I’ve been cleaning out when I have a moment. Some went on one row of dahlias I cleaned out, some on the raspberry row and the rest was thrown onto the garden to be tilled in later on.

We tied up the raspberries. We are very late with that chore, but at least it’s done now. The Marion (black) berries were done a couple of weeks ago. Rob and I worked together–one held up floppy vines and the other tied the knots. Of course, our grandson was right in there helping out. At one point, he pulled the baling twine string out of the bucket all the way down the row, around the end, around my boots, around to the other side where Papa was, to try to give him some string. Once I got untangled, we continued on with the project. It really was quite cute, since I didn’t fall or anything.

Last week, we worked a crazy amount of hours. We did a lot of fun activities as part of that work, and some just for fun. It was so busy, though, that Rob and I divided and conquered at times. One or both of us took kids to the aquarium, OMSI, swimming pool, store, church, a nerf gun war, to volunteer at the food bank, to volunteer at the after school program our church runs for a local school, school, preschool (back and forth on both counts), choir practice (one wanted to go watch one day, another wanted to “sing in the choir” as I practiced Sunday morning), played games, watched movies, ate popcorn, had my mom and sister over for a day, and had a hot dog roast in the back yard. My mom and sister played games and visited with whichever kids were there at the time. There were more things we did, but those were the highlights. We did as many of the mundane activities of life as we had time for, but everyone ate every meal they wanted and had snacks, if desired, as well. Laundry was done, and everyone washed and bathed, as needed. The rest….I didn’t sweat over.

I canned up several pineapples I got on sale for $1.49 each, right after Easter. I cooked a turkey I purchased last Thanksgiving and canned 7 quarts of broth from that. I froze bits of meat ate some and made soup, which is gone. I had an easy assignment for the Young Adult group and only needed to take some gf/df cookies this week.

We have a small section of garden that is planted. My peas and snow peas are up well. The beets and carrots are up a little–they are kind of patchy. The lettuce was up super well, but the slugs ate it. I have 3 left. Time to replant.

The bags of leaves have been decomposing in their plastic bags all winter. Since this picture was taken, the bags have been emptied and the leaves spread over the garden to be tilled in later this week.

I thought there was a good picture of the plants in the greenhouse, but I can’t find it if there is. The plants in there are doing very well. I’ll try to get some shots taken this week.

Rob has started having meetings concerning his Kenya trip, and is getting excited about the things he will be helping with when he goes. We are very thankful, as his support for the trip has been flowing in, as the Lord lays this ministry on people’s hearts. He has almost 3/4 of what he needs and we are very thankful, especially when you realize that he only found out that he was going on this trip a very few weeks ago. I am so excited that he gets to go and will hopefully be helping with a little pre-prep if something needs to be done. I’m planning out a few things to make my life easier while I’m holding down the fort here at home and have promises of family members who can help me like they did last year when Rob was gone to Bangladesh.

Where Have I Been?-October 13, 2023

Thank you for all the concern from all of you checking if I’m ok. I am more than all right, but have had an extremely crazy summer, which is why I haven’t found time to post very often. Also, our laptop will no longer make posts —it’s very old— so all blogging has to be done on my iPad, which is harder, and I find myself putting it off. I hope to do better because I want these posts for myself in the future to look back on.

In September, we spent a week camping. We went to Detroit Lake, which is in the mountains not far from our home.

Although our youngest grandson didn’t sleep in the campground with us, his dad brought him up a couple of times. One time we took both boys fishing. It took all of us and we caught nothing. We had so much fun, though. We went back to the campsite and roasted marshmallows and the boys played. Another day, Rob, Malcolm and I all went fishing and we did get 5 between us. Fun! We ate 2 and froze the rest.

Rob and I have been working so many hours in October that I can hardly catch a breath. My sister’s family will be going on a vacation in the future, including the kids, so we will be having a vacation, too. We have been able to work extra before and will work extra after, so we will be financially fine, as long as we stay frugal. My project list is growing by the day in anticipation, plus we will go camping again for a few days.


The garden is almost finished. Rob chopped up the last of the peppers yesterday and I dried them. I’ve been pulling plants as I can and have about 1/4 of the garden cleared. There are a few more fall crops but most are finished.

I’ve filled so many jars I’ve lost count. I do have a written list so I could count them, but I haven’t had time lately. We cleaned out all 3 deep freezers, completely organized the canning to make sure older items are in front and the new stuff is behind. I’ve frozen veggies and fruit and the newest are on the bottom and the older on top. We have already finished up quite a few of the older things I found. We received our 1/4 beef from the farmer we buy from each year and now have any leftover beef from last year in a place to grab before we grab the new. We had a gift to spend at Costco and did that and put those staples in the pantry to be rotated correctly. In August, I utopped up some pantry items with an Azure Standard order and have our drop next week that I have ordered from. As well. I tend to order a bunch then skip a month or two or even three since I get bulk items from there and they last a long time.

We are slowly cleaning the shop and garage and other areas. Rob has already been hauling things off to donate and we have more ready when he gets time. Our neighbor kindly took a bunch of our stuff to the dump. We have tossed, recycled and even burned quite a bit. This is a big project but we have at least started and can tell where we’ve worked.

I didn’t keep the garden weeded very well, but still got lots of food from it. I didn’t sew or quilt at all. I went so far as to take my sewing machine camping and didn’t even sew one stitch. I have been cooking, but not baking as often as I do sometimes.

These are just a few of the things we have filled our time with over these past few weeks. I hope to catch up with you all soon!

Thriving In My Thrifty Week-Aug. 13, 2023

I turned all my ripe tomatoes into pizza/pasta sauce this week. That is one of the most time consuming things I preserve, but also one of our favorite things to eat.

I shredded and dried zucchini. I also did get some thyme and basil dried and sorted out the thyme stems from it and put it away. I have been organizing my food storage a little when I have a few minutes.

We are going into a heat wave this week and it’s supposed to top 100 degrees for several days. I’m not sure what that’s going to do to the garden, but likely nothing good….

I was able to get most of the newly planted veggies to sprout, so if I keep them well watered I will hopefully keep them alive through the heat so I will have fall Lakeside spinach, Marvel de Seasons lettuce, Joy Choi Boc Choi and more. You may notice I put old lettuce leaves over the carrot row in hopes they would hold moisture in. They still haven’t sprouted. Neither have the green onions or snow peas.

The Quick Start cabbage, Pinetree cabbage mix and Hybrid broccoli blend are coming along nicely. I watered them this morning before church and just did it again this evening. They were already dried out. There’s also lettuce in there.

This basil has been cut several times. It’s lookimg a little heat stressed but I’m hoping to make pesto again. I’ve frozen several ice cube trays full already this summer. We love, love, love it!

I’ve also been weeding. I gave this raised bed a complete re-set. I pulled old snap peas, lettuce, an amazing pile of weeds and put strawberry runners back up into the bed. They had grown down below by the concrete! I left some cucumbers, peppers and tomatoes. I will add lettuce when it cools.

I’m pretty far behind with my weeding but I won’t get much done this week. We will be helping at church every morning because it’s Vacation Bible School week. Rob and I are in charge of the snacks again this year. We have a team and pre-packed 160 paper bags of prizes and snacks today after church. We are now set for 80 kids Monday and Tuesday, with the ability to quickly pack more if needed. We will finish packing bags later in the week once the numbers stabilize.

I need to run up to another county one day to do some judging for 4-H food preservation and it’s going to be quite hot. This is a good week to do those other activities because I would absolutely not be weeding in the heat anyway?. What I have done has been in the very early mornings and has taken me quite a few days to accomplish, as I just do a little each time I can.

We went to a small local parade with my sister and family. Both grandsons were able to go and they enjoyed the big trucks and rescue vehicles. My nephew was super excited about getting things at McDonald’s. We were on the sidewalk by it. So he kept going in there and buying food for the babies….we didn’t need to do lunch! He had it covered.

Preserving and gardening—August 2023

I am having trouble with my computer. I’ll do my best with my iPad.

I am spending much of my time these days picking and preserving food from the garden.

I first inventoried my canning. I counted every jar and arranged them logically. Then I knew what I needed to can.

My sister gave me peaches and I canned them. I made jam and froze some as well.

I’ve canned and frozen green and yellow beans and pulled the bushes. I still have pole beans so we’ve been eating them fresh and will until frost. I will can a few more later when my sister has extra.

I’ve done a half batch of sweet pickles and a very few dills. I have lots left over.

We are eating zucchini frequently and I froze a few packages I have made zucchini bread often as well.

I pulled all the beets that were left from the spring planting. We ate lots, shared some and I pickled the rest.

I picked lots of tomatoes and need to start processing them. I need pizza/ pasta sauce and enchilada sauce. I also need whole tomatoes so there’s lots to do as they ripen.

There is more produce out there so I just try to do a little bit each day and more on days when I’m not working. I’m getting there!




Garden Update-Mid July-2023

The garden is really starting to take off, and I’m spending most of my free time out there.

After having only enough raspberries to eat fresh last year, I’m delighted to be picking the ripe ones every-other-day and have been able to freeze several cookie sheets full of berries for this upcoming winter. I’m also getting Marion (black) berries to freeze.

My blueberries aren’t very prolific this year, but I’m getting some and also got some from my mom’s bushes. I have some of those left over, so I will be fine with what I can gather. I’m going to really prune those bushes this year. They need it. Then next year’s crop will likely be better.

We have so much good cabbage that we are eating it almost every day and have given away quite a bit as well. I have picked and processed most of my broccoli and after getting a few more side shoots, I will pull those bushes. They are about finished.

We have 3 cheddar cauliflowers and they are almost ready to pick. There were also 2 purple ones. They didn’t come out very big and one has been eaten and frozen and the other is still in the garden.

We’ve been picking a few cherry tomatoes of various kinds. These are Sungold, but we also have gotten a few Sweet Million (red), pear (yellow, pear-shaped), and a grape variety (red). There have been just a few round, red tomatoes so far.

So far, we’ve been able to have enough lettuce with all the succession plantings we put in. The hot weather is brutal on it, though, and it tends to get bitter this time of year. I do have some small lettuce coming along and hope to get more in this week.

There’s lots of basil.

….onions, celery and pumpkins.

The green beans are blooming, so it won’t be long. I’m getting lots of zucchini and dill, but the cilantro has bolted. There’s one more small patch and I’ll plant more.

My bright idea of growing nasturtiums up this trellis isn’t working, but I still love the flowers. I need to buy the trailing mix, but instead threw down any saved seeds, old (like 2016) packets, etc. that I could find.

There are dahlias everywhere, from last year. I have zinnias and marigolds scattered here and there, as well.

Every day, I spend a little time out on my deck, just enjoying the flowers I have planted out there, and looking out over the garden.

My gardening year is far from over. I’m still putting in succession plantings of many things. My latest planting of fresh summer squash/zucchini, lettuce, zinnias, and carrots is mostly up. I mean 7 carrots is enough, right? NOT! I’ll be planting more this week:)

Thriving In My Thrifty Week-July 9, 2023

We have been gone quite a lot the last couple of weeks and working like crazy when we were home. First, we took our grandson camping for his very first camping trip. The first morning, he woke up at 4 a.m., he was so excited. So we went fishing at this mountain lake in the Oregon Coast range. Although there were no fish to be caught by us, we had a blast.

It took 5 minutes for him to begin to pelt the water with rocks. It took 10 minutes for him to wade in, roll his fishing line up and start wading in, despite the fact that it was 6:45 a.m., and 45 minutes to fall in:). It was a perfect place to take him on his first fishing trip and we had so much fun!

They did catch a salamander!

He did all the usual camping activities: He washed dishes outside, even though our camper has a sink inside. He played trucks in the sand for hours.

We went down to the beach several times and built sand castles and collected rocks. His one disappointment was the kite we tried to fly would not fly from lack of wind. One time, we struck up a conversation with a perch fisherman and by the time we were done, we had a fish for dinner and some bait to try it ourselves the next day.

We roasted hot dogs and marshmallows, cooked in a Dutch Oven over the coals, and enjoyed food cooked in foil.

We took walks, visited the Oregon Coast Aquarium, a candy store, an ice cream store and ate out at Mo’s, which is a restaurant.

On the last night, the girls brought little brother down and they played together on the campground playground equipment. When you added endless walks around the campground, we had a busy week. A man in a neighboring campground asked us how we were still standing:). I’m not sure, but boy did we have fun!

Once we got home, we immediately started weeding, picking and preserving garden produce……and working at our job, of course.

My carrots are acting funny and some are trying to bolt. I pulled a lot of them and canned 10 pints. Some were not thinned well and are very small, some are nicer. Most of the family took some to eat. I will pull the rest soon and I’ve planted another row for fall. I also picked lettuce, snow peas, green onions, a few zucchini, broccoli and cabbage.

The 4th of July went well with a barbecue with the family and a double birthday party for both babies. Now they are 2 and 3.

By Thursday afternoon, Rob and I were off to Central Oregon to the wedding of our dear friends’ daughter. Rob had a prayer to say in the wedding and I was there to help with the food and the reception. Friday and Saturday were very full and we came home Sunday. The wedding was lovely and we had so much fun.

Rob did slip away Friday morning to a mountain lake to do some fishing while I helped prepare food.

I will say that the last couple of weeks have been a whirlwind. We were able to keep it frugal in several ways. First, we packed food everywhere we went, or ate at my friend’s house. We ate out 1 time, each trip and did not choose extravagant meals. Second, we took the trailer camping, but not for the second trip, as it was going to be very expensive to pull it that far for only 3 days. Instead, we rented a cabin. It wasn’t fancy–only 1 bedroom and very small, but perfect for our needs with a price we could afford. Rob was able to make one of his hand-crafted cutting boards for a wedding gift. We bought no souvenirs at the beach, but instead took and used things we already had. For instance, we have old sand toys and a cottage cheese carton we used on the beach one time, old kites we took, and one time we just dug piles of sand with our hands and put rocks and shells on top. Rob used fishing bait and equipment he already had, even though there was a “better” weight he could have bought. ..and son on. We had such fun both time, and it was even sweeter to know we stayed in the budget we had planned for each trip.

At the wedding, we helped my friend save a lot of money by helping her self-cater the reception. It was so fun!!! I was so glad to be there.

Pea Harvest–June, 2023

We have had 2 good pickings of peas so far. I grow Maestro bush shelling peas. This year, I got them planted in March and now they are ripe. They like cooler, wetter weather, so I’m glad I got them in when I did.

The first picking was smaller, and I filled 4 baggies. I use quart-sized Ziplock bags and fill them so they lay flat in a larger freezer bag. There is no where near a quart of peas in each bag because we use much less than that amount each time. I also want them flat so I can break off a chunk when I only use a very few peas for something without thawing the entire baggie.

Yesterday, I filled a small bucket, a large Tupperware bowl, and then grabbed 2 plastic flowerpots from the planting table and filled those, too. Rob and I both shelled until we needed to go to a grad party, then put the rest on ice to wait until that evening when we were home again.

Rob ended up shelling out all the rest himself because I got caught up in another project. Then, I dumped them in a pot of boiling water to blanch them and set the timer for 3 minutes. After that time passed, I fished the peas out with a hand-held strainer and put them into cold water to begin cooling immediately. After they were cool, I put them in 1 quart Ziplocks.

We got 9 baggies this time, bringing us up to 13 so far. In a couple of days, there will be another picking, but it will be smaller again. We will then be ready to pull the bushes, enrich the soil and plant some late summer and fall crops in their place. Pea plants are a legume and fix nitrogen into the soil. We still feel we need a little more compost in the area when we plant a second crop.

Last year, I planted fall broccoli and cabbage where the peas were. I think I will do some more of those a little later in the summer, but may add lettuce, snow peas and possiblybeets or carrots, if I find I need them.

I’m delighted to have this project well onto its way. It’s very time-consuming, but the finished product is very, very tasty and good. I already have more peas frozen then I did last year altogether because there are more peas in each baggie and I’m getting more baggies. So, of course, that makes me happy with my yield.

I never stop anyone from eating peas, and if we run out, I’ll buy a bag at the store. But, that being said, most years we have enough with what we grow. We don’t use very many in a year.

I like to put them in tuna-noodle and turkey-noodle casseroles. Sometimes I pop a few into a soup or stew to brighten it up. We occasionally eat some in a pile on our plate, but that’s more rare for us. There are a couple of other recipes I add a few peas to, but I can’t remember them right now. No matter. When I do remember, I will have some peas to put in those dishes.

Thriving In My Thrifty Week—June 12, 2023

This week, I went to a U-Pick strawberry patch, all by myself:). I know he would have enjoyed it, but I was so glad he wasn’t there when I saw the (seriously) 150+ people who were swarming the field. I got enough for a batch of jam and some to freeze for smoothies and some to eat fresh. It was hard to find ripe berries, actually. After seeing the people come and come and come, I could see why. I may try again soon, or just make out with what I got.

I think Malcolm is trying to wink at Papa. He loves “bahberries.” In fact, I stepped outside for a minute the day I brought them home and came back only to see the floor littered with little green tops–he’d eaten as many as he could grab. We got those picked up and I turned my back and …….yep! We had to clean the floor again. I’m so glad he didn’t get sick.

The garden still takes quite a bit of time each day. It’s growing so well, as are the weeds. We are eating lettuce daily and sharing with many. The peas are almost ripe. I mean they maybe would plump up if a certain little boy wasn’t out there stripping off any that look like they are growing….It warms my heart to see him enjoy them so much and like Rob says, “He’s eating vegetables, we can always buy a bag of peas at the store.” I’m pretty sure we will get a big batch one of these days–it will be beyond what he can eat.

We are harvesting a few snow peas every couple of days and my cilantro is bolting. I’ve been using the lower leaves anyway in salads and marinades. I will pull that out and let the next planting be used very soon. I put more seeds in the ground but have none yet. I may need to replant.

The compost heap on the right has been emptied completely. I’ve been working on it for a while and now we have started dumping new scraps in there. I have side-dressed the celery, some cabbage and cauliflower and some onions with part of it, as they were struggling where they were. These 3 buckets are all that’s left to disperse and I have plenty of places that could use it. There’s never enough compost! There is one more bin that needs emptying on the other side of the garden.

Malcolm has spent hours and hours working on this project and pouring his buckets all over the place. It’s so cute! I’m glad to have this bin finally empty and he still has another bin to get into in a different place. Otherwise, he just digs holes in the garden. That works, too.

We went to the library this week and watched a preschool show. We also signed up both Malcolm and my nephew, Jake for summer reading.

It was party week. We attended a graduation ceremony Friday, a grad party Saturday and a birthday party Sunday afternoon. I haven’t cooked a whole lot this past weekend.

I did make gluten-free hamburger buns early in the week. They came out great. I made pulled pork sandwiches for us and the college group I cook for weekly. I used extras for sandwiches a few times.

We loaded up on $1.99/lb boneless-skinless chicken breast and thighs today. 3 packs in all. I froze them in meal-sized portions. I popped some Mexican-inspired marinade on some of the chunks to use tomorrow for SW chicken salads for the college group and some to freeze. Milk was $1.29 for 1/2 gallon so we got 2 of those. There were sausage rolls for $1.99 and those kielbasas for $1.99 each. I grabbed a few of those.

We passed up the $5.99/package tator tots. Seriously? It wasn’t even a big package. We got 10 lbs. of potatoes for about $5.

I’m already having an easier time stretching my time between grocery store trips, due to the abundance of lettuce in the garden. I’m also still loaded up with home-canned food and things I froze last summer. This is a wonderful time of year to be cooking and there’s so much more growing out there. I love it!

Thriving In My Thrifty Week–June 4, 2023

I made a mega-batch of spaghetti sauce this past week. I used some to make lasagna for the young adult group and us, and some for spaghetti. I was able to utilize my canned tomato products to make it.

I was making meals for someone and they got a container, as well. For those meals, the food was frozen, for access later on when it was needed by the person.

I made a triple berry crisp from our frozen berry stash. We also made pork chops, brown rice, a chicken-pineapple sauce for the rice, chicken legs, snickerdoodle cookies, and lots and lots of salads.

I needed to clean out the camper freezer and fridge as we were getting some brake work done on the camper. I use that fridge as my spare one. Those items were put in a cooler until the camper returned a few hours later–mostly extra eggs, cheese, etc. The freezer was emptied and I’ve been using the items, as some had been in there a long time. The rest are in the chest freezer to be used soon and I will start fresh loading it with items for our next camping trip. There was a large bag of frozen shrimp in there and I’ve been eating a little each day. It’s almost gone, but it was sure tasty! Little Malcolm loves it, too, and eats his share.

This is only a small portion of the lettuce that is ready now. We are eating it frequently and I am giving it away to anyone who wants any. I even sent some over to the neighbor in a bucket and started laughing when I saw my bucket clipped to the fence, emptied out afterwards!

We visited a preschool party at the library with Malcolm. He had a blast and we learned about possible preschools for next fall. He received 2 free books, made crafts (crown), got that ring pop sucker he’s eating, and played some games. He’s been asking me if we can go back to that party! We checked out some books while we were there.

He saw Clifford, the big red dog.

While the camper was away getting it’s brakes fixed, Rob and Malcolm pressure-washed the concrete where it sits. It was awful. Rob did most of it, with Mac yelling at him for a turn, then Malcolm finally got his turn at the end. It was a terrible mess of moss and dirt. I swept it while the boys were fetching the trailer. It was a lot of work, but we are so happy to have that done.

Rob took senior pictures for a close family friend’s daughter. They came out amazing! I went as well, along with Michaela, Jake, Malcolm and the girl’s younger sister. We went to a park nearby where they have a wonderful garden with roses and other lovely plants. We took a picnic and some frisbees and had a nice time with all the kids after pictures were taken.

Rob has talked twice at church about his trip to Bangladesh. On Thursday evening, it was a group of adults who came out to hear the team speak and see pictures. I needed to take cookies, so Jake, Mac and I made snickerdoodles. The second occasion was for the children’s church and he talked to them today. They had gathered money and school supplies and Rob told them all about the trip and how the supplies were given out and how much they were appreciated by the kids. 15 suitcases of supplies were taken–craft projects, school supplies, crayons, coloring books, aprons and pot holders for the women staff, prayer journel notebooks and pens for the men staff, etc. It was a blessing all 15 made it, along with the clothing ones, too!

Through this and more, we have tried to take time to stop and smell the roses, and other flowers, too. Almost every day, Malcolm grabs my hand and says, “Gama, come see the fowers.” He then takes me around and shows me every one he likes. It’s precious. I’m also treated to the newly sprouted squash he and I planted, a green tomato that has shown up, and whatever else he can find. Even the 3 flowers that are dying–“they look sad.” I hope he never loses his enthusiasm for gardening.