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Flowers in Winter

Clockwise from top left: Lenten Rose, Christmas Cactus, orchid closeup and plant, rose mix, Lenten rose, amaryllis. Flowers are a simple thing that bring a lot of joy. When it’s chilly out, I enjoy looking for the first signs of Lenten roses, ducking their heavy heads below their sturdy leaves and a layer of pine… Continue reading Flowers in Winter

#America · Books · Coffee and Tea · Family History · Fashion · Gardening · Kindness · Recipes

It’s Time for Parties on the Porch! a book review

Whiskey in a Teacup: What Growing Up in the South Taught Me About Life, Love, and Baking Biscuits by Reese Witherspoon This is a delightful book about growing up and being a younger adult in the southern United States. It leans a little bit towards the silver-spoon side (for instance, my family's road trips were in… Continue reading It’s Time for Parties on the Porch! a book review

Family History · Gardening

Tomorrow I pick up my vegetable box…

Last year we joined a CSA, which stands for Community Supported Agriculture, joining with a bi-weekly plan. Every other week, starting in May, I go pick up a box in the next small town, the boxes gently tucked under an awning at a church to keep them cool. I often go with a neighbor, which… Continue reading Tomorrow I pick up my vegetable box…

Family History · Gardening


We always had fig bushes at my parents’ house. Grandmother Irene and Mama both loved them, making more preserves than we could eat or give away. I would say, “Mama, could we please have some grape jelly from the store? Please?”
My friends and I all knew how to pick the best fresh figs for a healthy afternoon snack that didn’t spoil our dinners–we peeled them by pulling on the stem and ate them right by the bush. Mama didn’t know and we didn’t wash our hands! As an adult, I learned to enjoy figs with savory foods, like in a salad or on a cheese board, but Mama kept making and giving away her preserves…she even used them as a fund-raising project when she was “Queen” of her Eastern Star Chapter.
I agree with Sabra about covering your skin when picking them–those prickly leaves do make one itch! Today, I enjoy figs when I can get them…we’re trying to revive the old fig tree we cut back after moving here a few years ago. Hopefully this year, there will be enough figs for us and the birds!

Later, Miss Slater

looking through my kitchen window

I notice my fig bush has grown
several feet since last summer

I can no longer pull down the top limbs
to harvest the ripe, brown fruit

when contemplating my figs, I usually think of
Middle Eastern markets, hillsides, and biblical stories

but today, I think of my mother
and her two great fig bushes

she canned fig preserves
delicious on her homemade, buttered biscuits

even the butter was homemade
when we lived on the farm

but the fig bush I thought of today 
was the one behind her well house

on the barren place we bought
after selling the farm

when lightning struck and killed her fig bush
she never planted another

to my surprise, she said she was allergic to the bush
and would get figs from friends

now it comes to me
I know what she meant

I’ve learned to suit-up with…

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Another Reason Why I Grow Flowers with my Vegetables…

There's no doubt that the best tasting tomato or pepper is the one you pick out of your own back yard.  Herbs from your own garden make food taste better than herbs from the grocery store.  Some people, myself included, are mixing in flowers with their veggies.  Why? Once a new gardener has grown tomatoes… Continue reading Another Reason Why I Grow Flowers with my Vegetables…

Family History · Gardening · Labradors and Friends

After Dinner Gardening and finding Hydrangeas

We enjoy the longer days of spring and summer with walks after dinner and sometimes, a little time in the backyard garden afterwards.  To make it work, I start the prep work for dinner ahead of time:  chopping vegetables, starting brown rice,  thawing chicken or fish, and picking any herbs we might need.  Once Mr.… Continue reading After Dinner Gardening and finding Hydrangeas

Family History · Gardening · Uncategorized

Meeting my “Earth Day Deadline” with a little help…

  It is always my goal to have the garden planted, or at least, mostly planted by Earth Day, April 22.  My parents and grandparents always followed The Farmer's Almanac; perhaps this need to do so comes from their habits.   When the weather cooperates with lots of sun and a bit of rain in between,  we… Continue reading Meeting my “Earth Day Deadline” with a little help…