The Backyard

The Backyard

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Rest and Relaxation - Backyard Chili Style

This is vacation week to plant summer crops, exercise, read, and just plain vegetate for a change. My idea of vacation is NOT to go somewhere and spend the entire time in my backyard and that's exactly what I've done thus far. The corn, zucchini, winter squash, black beans, cannelli beans, tiger-eye beans, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant are all planted, fed, and mulched. The kale and spinach is picked and cooked. The strawberries are giving me a run for my money and keeping me hopping with picking them. I picked 2 quarts one day and 3 quarts today. What will the next two weeks hold with ripening berries? Everything is getting watered every other day now that Mom Nature isn't cooperating with some moisture. The balance is 4 hours in the garden (no more) and two hours exercise be it biking, running, kayaking, or whatever else I come up with (I count turning compost as exercise too -- it's a workout!). The rest of the day is for puttering; cleaning, cooking, organizing, sewing or reading. Life is good.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

May Day in the Backyard

The birds were chirping away as the sun rose while I hung the clothes on the line to dry. I heard the birds, but didn't really hear them as I wasn't focused on them. And then it hit me -- that's a boblink's chirp! And so the 1st of May has arrived and along with it, the pleasures of living organically in the country. Last evening, the hummingbird feeder went out and sometime today, tomorrow, or maybe Monday, a hummingbird will make it's debut. The bobolinks and the hummingbirds are like clockwork year after year. The yellow bush to right here is an old Antique yellow rose -- Roberts Yellow Rose -- and supposedly the only yellow antique rose. This year, it's covered in honeybees. To stand next to this bush and hear the buzzing is comforting. Comforting to know not all honeybees have met their demise. Next, was off to "Marianne's" to get eggs. Marianne and her family are Amish and they recently hung out the Fresh Brown Eggs For Sale sign and of course I was all over that. She lives 1/2 mile away from me. When I got to farm, I got chills and nearly started to cry. Many Amish, in my opinion, practice what us English should do more of -- no electricity, no oil consumption via a vehicle, grow their own food, and support local stores. Marianne's farm is perfect. Her garden is huge with peas, onion, raspberries, radishes, turnips and I'm not sure what else was coming up. The chickens were flying and running around in their field with a stray goose that was causing a bit of a ruckus. The jersey cows were making their way out to pasture, only to stop and be a little curious at me looking at them. There were pigs, dogs, birds, and you can tell everything has a function - no waste of anything. Her house was plain and serviceable -- no fancy dancy Home Interior prints hanging around. As I pulled out of the driveway, I thought about someday being more like them. But why not now, I thought? Well, commuting to Harrisburg in a CAR almost 100 miles a day certainly doesn't give me any room to talk about trying to be like them right now. My dear hubby said after we retire I can get chickens! So maybe with the chickens will be the attempt to live more like the Amish. Now how can I get rid of electricity completely??