Surprised

Saturday, and Sylvia was working in the flower gardens.  I was splitting my attention between the Bible study prep and a NASCAR race on TV (turned it on with the sound off).  The heating pad on my back didn’t require my attention.

I heard the back door open.  I looked up expecting to see Sylvia.  It was our son, Bryant.

“Hi,” I said, “What are you doing here?”

The answer he gave, “We were in the area and decided to drop off an early Father’s Day gift.”

I realized I had to follow him.  I did.

Stepping out of the back door, I saw . . .

Now mulched

Now mulched

Bryant and Barbara who worked so hard cleaning up this area a week earlier, had returned and put down bark mulch to control weeds.  Wow!

Doesn't it look great?

Doesn’t it look great?

That was such a huge help and I’ll think of them every time I come in or go out the door.

I love it

I love it

Thanks Bryant and Barbara.  Your gift is very much appreciated, and all the more so because you put yourselves into it.

Sylvia and I are so greatly blessed.  So this week starts well and looks even better.

Brightness on a Rainy Day

Here are some things that brighten my day.  They are beautiful joy bringers.

150601d

150604a

150604b

150604c

Yes, even that clover blossom adds to the glory of creation.

What brightens your dull, rainy days?

Another Fun Visit

Yesterday afternoon, our friend Sharkey stopped in for an overnight visit.  Sylvia and I always look forward to her visits.  We know we’re in for a lot of good conversations and laughs.  We didn’t do instrumental music this time, but we did sing.

In the evening, Sylvia and Sharkey were sitting at the table playing a word game.  They were getting into it and were enjoying themselves immensely.  I was in a corner reading and relaxing in my recliner.  The sun was about ready to set when I noticed a bit of color on display.

I started walking toward the office.  The camera is kept there, and the way leads past windows with good views of the western sky.

Sylvia asked, “Did you see that sun.”  “I saw it and have the camera,” I replied just before stepping onto the front deck.

Sunset and thunderstorm -- Awesome

Sunset and thunderstorm — Awesome

I didn’t capture any lightening, nor did the image contain the sounds of thunder that followed.  A short while later the rain arrived on our roof and grounds.

Family to the Rescue

I won’t show you a “before” picture of the area along the foundation wall of our house.  It is the area we call “Granny’s Garden.”  It got that name when Briana (our granddaughter) gave Sylvia a sign to post there.  The sign said, “Granny’s Garden.”

We had the veggie garden planted and that was the next item on the TO DO list.  Our son, Bryant, and wife, Barbara, volunteered to help us on a Saturday morning.  We gratefully accepted the offer, and they showed up on time.

Soon, Sylvia, Bryant and Barbara were cleaning up Granny’s Garden.  It was a lot of work.  While they did that, I used the tractor and chain to pull out some unwanted mulberry trees in the walk-out area.  With Bryant’s help, I even pulled out an overgrown shrub.

Barbara cleaned up the holly bushes (one male, one female)

Barbara cleaned up the holly bushes (one male, one female)

A couple steps back to reveal more.

Gone is the chaotic jumble that ruled this region

Gone is the chaotic jumble that ruled this region

Turn and see the other half of Granny’s Garden.

Hollyhocks and roses hold forth in this side

Hollyhocks and roses hold forth in this side.  Can you see the garlic?

There’s still a lot left to do.  We expect to make slower progress on that front.

Therapy

Sylvia’s therapy is going well.  Mobility is rapidly returning to her wrist as she faithfully does her prescribed exercises.  Her goal is to be finished with therapy by month’s end.  I believe she’ll do it.

Life Abounds

Two in one

Two in one

When we bought this house.  We found the rhododendron bush, but it had an azalea planted tight beside it.  They were too close to separate and so the two continue to grow, each in the others embrace.

The azalea blooms in early spring.  Later, the rhododendron takes its turn setting out blossoms.  And so we have life within life.  Look again.  It is life within life within life.

Rolling in the treasure

Rolling in the treasure

Sylvia and I are enjoying this time of year.  The weather is perfect for having windows open to let in fresh air.  Better yet, we love to go outside.  Sometimes we go out just to feel the fresh breeze on our face and to see and to smell.  Everywhere we look, life goes on.

Wildlife

This week started off well.  Monday, Sylvia had the cast removed from her left arm.  It was two months to the day since she broke her wrist.  X-rays show that the fracture is healing.  Thursday will be the first therapy session for her.

The last few days have been very busy days for us.  There has been much to do.  I’ve not had time to attend to this blog.  Fortunately, I have put the camera to work and here are a couple of items from its memory card.

The grass is not only greener, it tastes better

The grass is not only greener, it tastes better

I saw the doe cross the driveway and walked over to the neighbor’s fence.  I raised the blinds and reached for the camera.  The deer had crossed the fence.  She ate some grass and then came back and disappeared into the willow brush and tall grass down by the road.

On Sunday afternoon, I saw an unusual sight.  It was out on the lawn.

A duck surveys the possibilities

A duck surveys the possibilities

We’ve had a lot of rain lately, but a duck?  They usually consider this “flyover” country.  Maybe she was tired and that’s why she stayed for a while.

Enough is enough

Enough is enough

As I watched her fly away, I thought of how Sylvia was going to feel when the cast came off.  She is enjoying the freedom.

Spring Goodness

After planting the garden, Sylvia came into the house picked up a knife and three plastic bags.  I dropped what I was doing, picked up a knife and followed.  She was already in full attack mode on the rhubarb patch.  I stood outside the fence and took the stalks she harvested, cut off the leaves and bagged the rhubarb stalks.   Later, I dropped them in neat piles.  We were in the rhythm and soon the cutting was done.  It only took a few minutes to dispose of the cut leaves and gather the harvest.

That will make a lot of pie

That will make a lot of pie

That, my friend, is what 26 pounds of rhubarb looks like.  Earlier, we took 14 pounds from the patch.  We are happy and so are a lot of our friends.

Speaking of friends, we think of Rosey and Dale C every time we see the patch and speak a word of thanks with each serving of this wonderful perennial vegetable.

Yesterday’s asparagus harvest went to our neighbor.  When Sylvia mentioned that we had some cedar trees she wanted removed, he volunteered to help.  Within minutes he was on the scene, chainsaw in hand.  Thanks, Hubert.

Planting Before the Rain

Yesterday, I left a hint that Sylvia was at work in the garden.  What had she started?

Popping in the potatoes

Popping in the potatoes

The “trench” on our left was planted to green beans.  Onions have been placed along the fence.  Sylvia is planting potatoes.  Perhaps we can go another year plus without bringing home potatoes from the store.  The ones we grow are much better!

Just cut them up so that each piece has at least one eye

Just cut them up so that each piece has at least one eye

Each piece is dropped in a hole and covered.  Then you wait . . .

Still going . . .

Still going . . .

Butternut squash behind her and jalapeños at her feet, Sylvia keeps going.

She’ll sleep well come night.

Out in the Garden

The peas have broken through.  Lovely spots of green adorn our garden.

Tender shoots come out to greet the sun

Tender shoots come out to greet the sun

Because we have bunnies in the area, and because they have rabbit habits, we have to install fence around the garden.  That’s what we did yesterday.

Safely behind the fence.

Safely behind the fence.

That was yesterday.  This morning, I went to look for Sylvia and found her inside the fence.

Busy, busy, busy

Busy, busy, busy

Do you think you can keep up with her?  I can’t.

Come back tomorrow.  I’ll tell you what she was doing.

Remembering

On this Memorial Day [observed] our thoughts are on those who served our country.  We also salute those who are serving today.  Deep heartfelt thanks and God’s blessings to you and to yours.

Barbara and me with our Dad, who was home on leave.

Barbara and me with our Dad, who was home on leave.

Two of Dad’s brothers and two of Mom’s brothers also served in WWII.

I looked for a picture of our younger son, who retired from the US Air Force after 22 years of active duty.  I was unable to find one.  I suspect that he doesn’t mind.

Later today, Sylvia returns after a week with her dad.  Perhaps she can help me find what I’ve been looking for.

Unrelated Trivia

I’m harvesting asparagus twice a day now.  Yes, it grows that fast, and I want to get it at its peak.

So far the Saturn sighting project has been shut out by cloudy skies.  Looks like I might get a chance later this week.