Thursday, March 31, 2011

You Know It's Spring... Or Maybe Not

You know it's spring when I post my first blog entry about The Family Garden. The weekend before last was officially the start of our gardening, but Allyson actually got a jump on us a few weeks back. One afternoon when I was cooking pintos for some home-made refried beans (yum!), she grabbed a handful of beans and ran out to the garden. She probably didn't plant them very deep, and she definitely put them too close together, and it was also a little cold, but she was so excited to be planting beans on her own.

"They might not grow, baby," I warned.

"Yes, they will," she said confidently.

Sure enough, they sprouted within a week, and they've been growing steadily ever since. On Saturday, Bill thinned them out and transplanted them from the tomato area--yes, we're trying tomatoes again even after three straight years of failure--to the bean area.

Pintos in Their New Home

It will be interesting to see what happens if some beans actually grow. Bill will just have to eat them, even though he despises beans. Actually, maybe despises is too strong a word. All the rest of us love beans, so I've continued putting beans in chili, soup, etc. (and putting pureed beans in cupcakes and muffins, just because I can!). Bill used to pick all the beans out, but lately I've caught him eating them. Either he no longer has the energy to pick them out, or he's been assimilated. But I digress.

Allyson's other plants aren't in the garden, but over by the shed next to the pool. Bill built her a little planter box for some sunflower seeds she saw at the hardware, and we planted them on Saturday.

Allyson With Sunflower Seeds and Cedar Planter Box

Waiting Endlessly to Sow the Seeds

Allyson also got to plant a few veggies, which have grown into seedlings in our window box. The labels are in her own writing.
Squash, Peppers, Green Cantaloupe, Orange Cantaloupe

Aren't the Squash Cute? Like Little Ducks, Allyson Says

Okay, I can't resist. Here's one more squash picture... They are growing so fast I think they're ready to go in the ground:

See How They Reach For the Light... That's How I Feel During Morning Quiet Time

I hope our garden thrives this year, so we can have as much fun eating our produce as we have planting it. I'll keep you posted.

Or Maybe Not...
Until this afternoon, when it hit the 70s (about 24 Celsius), I was wondering whether spring really had arrived. We've had four days of cool temperatures, cool enough to bring out our jackets and maybe even sit by the fire. I think it was in the upper 40s (about 9 Celsius) on Sunday, the day I'd planned to walk with my neighbor Kindra and her daughter Makayla.

I phoned on the way home from church and talked to Makayla, who sounded pretty grumpy. "Obviously it's too cold to walk," I began. "There's a cold mist in the air and a sharp breeze."

"Oh no, my mom said we're walking today no matter what," Makayla said, her tone even grumpier.

Uh oh, I thought. Walking together was my idea, since I'm the one training for The 3-Day Walk. I heaved a sigh. "I'll be there at 1:45," I said.

We bundled up, and it wasn't all that bad, only I really wished I had worn gloves. Bill would have laughed at me, but I wouldn't have cared. Kindra and I chatted the entire two miles to her son Jacob's soccer game, as the miles slipped away under our feet. She explained that they probably would've stayed home except for her husband's ribbing. "I knew you guys wouldn't last long," he'd said.

"Oh, no. We're going," she retorted. "We're going no matter what."

I was so glad we did. Not only did I get some great exercise and a good chat, but I also got to walk with someone new this time: Ethan!
Ethan Has an Odd Habit of Picking Up Random Sticks When We Walk
It was my first training walk with him, unless you count the one where he took off on his Rip-Stick (like a hinged skateboard) and never came back, so that I feared he might be lying in the road somewhere. 

This time he was on foot, and since he's not really a runner, he was stuck with me. We had the longest conversation since I don't know when. He was talking about some projects at school, including something about World War II. For 20 minutes straight, we talked about whether it was wrong to drop the atom bomb, and how awful the Japanese internment camps must have been, and then about other less than stellar moments in American history. I was pleased to learn that his history teacher doesn't just teach from the bland, sanitized textbooks; I didn't learn about things like the internment camps or the Trail of Tears until I was in college.

During our walk, it dawned on me that my boy not only looks like a young man, but he's starting to talk like one too! What a wonderful walk, even in the chilly drizzle that turned into fat, splatting raindrops just as we reached home. My hands and cheeks were freezing, but my heart was toasty warm.


Mindy said...

I hate to break it to you but, he's going to be graduating from high school before you know it! I remember holding him and Hillary as infants, and now they're both about to be in high school?!

I'm glad you're staying with the walking! :) Blake and I went on a walk last weekend when I was visiting him and before we knew it we had walked for 3 hours! It was so nice.

Gentle said...

I love Allyson's plant cute! We will be planting our watermelon seeds this weekend. This summer, I am concentrating on just one and pray that I will produce something?! Look forward to seeing pics of your fruits and veggies bloom and will pray Lola and all others will stay away from the tempting treats:)

Victor S E Moubarak said...

We've had Spring in the UK already. It happened one afternoon last week. We're now back to Winter.

God bless you and yours.

Sarah said...

Mindy - Can you believe Ethan and Hillary are already so grown up? Good for you and Blake, to take a 3 hour walk. Good exercise and good romance!

Gentle - Thanks for the prayers. I know we need them. Lola was trying to dig up my wisteria vine the other day and got banished to her fenced run.

Victor - You always make me laugh. Thank you!

Jenny said...

I'm totally looking to you for advice on gardening. We're about to start ours and I'm facing fear of failure!

Love the last sentence of this post!

Sarah said...

Jenny - I have to confess that Bill is the only one in our family with a green thumb. I do like to pull weeds, though. It feels like I'm setting something right in the world.


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