Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Efforts...Maybe a hint?

Funny. The garden I worked hard to establish was rather mediocre this summer. Higher than normal heat index, an occasional chicken break out, and probably more than anything, a very busy gardener, focused on other things than her garden, meant only a handful of tomatoes, a few squash, no okra or much of anything else. Funny, the hot peppers have done well. Chickens don't like them. The plants don't mind the heat. Good for us. We love chilies of all sort. The jalapenos are the most prolific. Shishito, a japanese variety, come in second. Green chilies, the NM variety, are slow but steady.

The garden I didn't work to establish, the front bed, has some Japanese cucumbers in it, growing on the front fence. I threw the seeds in the bed as an afterthought. Basically ignored them. They were late. Somehow survived the heat blast. And the chickens. The late rains came right in time. They are going crazy! As are the zinnias that planted themselves, and the purple beans that planted themselves from last year's dried out leftovers.

As I picked some tender, juicy cucumbers the other day, I thought perhaps there might be some spiritual conclusions I needed to draw. OR a poem that might need to be written. Or a psalm of gratitude?

Scattered Clouds and Drizzly.

College kids have flown away for now.

It is weird to think that from here on out, these lively, curious, adventurers will likely be back home for very limited visits. Which is as it should be.

They are wonderful young adult humans who bless me greatly with their visits home. They help me with projects. They sit with me around the table and happily visit for hours. They are independent, intelligent and kind.

I always feel a bit bereft after their departure. But not too much. Less shoes scattered about, less dirty towels, dirty dishes, smaller grocery budget.

The weather is a bit weepy, fallish, cool and moist. Perfect for transition time.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Keep Calm, Carry On, and don't forget to say Thank You.

The temperatures are cooling off. Late summer monsoon rains have washed over our high mountain desert and instead of shimmering burning tan, blue green greets the eyes.

Midway through August.

Quite a few goals met, or on the way to being met. I find myself increasingly grateful for my lot in life. I work hard. Every aspect of my work gives me pleasure. Well. I don't know about washing those giant dough bowls! But the pleasure I have when seeing them stashed in an orderly bakery, with a clean kitchen to enjoy is pretty nice.

With enough moments scattered amongst the duties when I remember to say thanks, breathe, look around, feel.

Plenty to blog about. Just wanted to say that today, as I work, I am thankful.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Wild and Unruly. Yep. That Would Be Us...

I almost chopped down the giant sunflowers that were coming up as volunteers outside the bakery door to the backyard.

They are wild. Unruly. No giant picturesque flower heads here. Dozens of happy little flowers that great the sun, shine happily a day or three, then dry into a scratchy mass of mess. These are not the sunflower seeds we like to snack on.

The plants tower over me as I exit the sliding glass door to the yard.

Maggie caught me as I mentioned my desire to tidy things up. She reminded me we like unruly wild things.

What a girl.

So the scratchy mass of messy, over ten foot tall plants grow outside the door. And gift me daily as they gift many of God's little creatures with their treats.

Some days my meditation/prayer moment consists of pausing for five or ten minutes at the bakery door. I watch the gold finches, usually a pair, male and female, sometimes three or four, come to feast on the nodding, dried up heads of tiny little nutritious seeds. They land on the head, it bobs a couple times. Sometimes more if it is windy. Upside down, their little beaks bob quickly back and forth, pulling out the seeds that are worthless to me.

Except for them.

The lemon curd yellow bellies bounce. I wonder that God gave me Maggie to help me remember the important things.

PS During one of my meditation/prayer moments the other day as I attempted to still my mind and be in the glorious gift of my life at the moment, I noticed a cloud of what appeared to be monarch butterflies sipping from the nectar of the volunteer hot pink zinnia blooming her heart out by the dead damson plum tree that no matter how much water, still couldn't survive the stress of our extra hot summer. And tiny yellow sulfur butterflies danced around the patch of tiny yellow flowers that will turn into godforsaken awful, horrible goatheads if I neglect to tend to them....And another couple of varieties of butterflies danced with the goldfinches, swallowtails, a brown and gray variety that looked like bark and maybe something else. The dove flew here and there, a loose chicken scratched around the edges.

PPS other kids, not mentioned: I will try to squeeze in some mention of the significant ways you have been speaking spiritual truths to me this summer. Wow. Feeling stressed. Upheaval and concerns and distractions that attempt to drag me away from my true center. But somehow they bring me back, even if for just a moment at a time...