- Near Miss: Yesterday the weather forecast called for widespread, destructive storms all across Oklahoma. We expected thunder and lightning, flooding rain, and, I kid your not, hail the size of DVDs. That was a new one. I messaged Jessica mid-afternoon to remind her to park her car beneath their carport and to surrender her garden. As big and exposed as her vegetable garden is, there would not be much she could do to protect it. I gave her, “We’re all in the same boat,” kind of assurances as I gulped against worry for my own gardens. Her calm response shocked me. She recounted the last hail storm and the minimal damage they sustained then, and she described her voluptuous, unruly cucurbit vines, then said, “Honestly? Those pumpkins need to be put in their place anyway.” I died laughing. I am dead as I write this. The storm fell apart and neither of our gardens were pummeled. Her unruly pumpkin vines still rule the day. Cheers to wild Oklahoma weather, wild pumpkin vines, and even wilder daughters.
- Our Dance Card is Full: Handsome is working from home today while I wrap up a solid farm week. Then we will throw ourselves into party mode. Tonight we are hosting about a dozen friends for a little summertime kickoff. Saturday we will take the Batmobile to Edmond for a Touch- a-Truck event. And Sunday we will convene at Mom and Dad’s with local family for Father’s Day. Next weekend all of my siblings will be in the same city for a few days, and we have some big fun planned for that rare occasion! And summertime in general promises lots of cookouts, swim parties, outdoor movies, and adventures.
- Farm Improvements: We are so happy with how some house renovations went this spring, and we are now turning our imaginations and resources toward the south deck and the chicken coop, separately. While it may happen in stages, we hope to dismantle the warped wooden boardwalk near the herb garden and the decking around the pool. We want to replace it with concrete patio, sidewalks, etc. The vision is connect the kitchen door all the way to the bonfire area with concrete and rock, then to partly surround the pool too. We might in the near future sink the pool a few feet underground and replace the liner. On the other side of the farm, the chicken coop will soon get a power washing, some fresh nesting boxes, and maybe a coat of paint. That project is much smaller but perhaps more meaningful. I crave to let the flock free range again, but I shudder at the thought of what they could to my gardens. Light a candle or seven hundred for me.
- Garden Update: Bonkers. Everything is bonkers. I have a big metal trough full of salmon colored daylilies blooming and sunflowers about to bloom, also in that trough. Downhill, basil is growing thick and low like a pesto carpet. Tomatoes, peppers, squash and cucumbers, well, according to Jessica they need to be in their place. Salad greens absolutely refuse to stop. Nothing has bolted yet, thanks to this luxurious June weather. Potatoes were okay, and I managed to grow a basketful of onions, all of which get donated because we are not onion eaters. I am happier than ever with the shade garden. Perennials are really filling in this year, and I made decent choices for annual color. The Mural Garden at the top of our driveway is where I am growing my version of a Four Sisters combo (four, not three, because we have four sisters in our family), and maybe soon I will grab some photos of that. It is so lush and colorful. Filled with both food and flowers. Honorable mention to the Color Wheel garden, friends, because it has kept me on my toes. What a fun experiment!
- Reading Lately: I have a proper book review brewing, but please make time in your life for a novel called The Midnight Library. Also, are you subscribed to Joe Jacobi’s newsletter in Medium? He has fantastic daily journal prompts.
Happy Friday, friends, and happy Father’s Day weekend! However you are able to mark the occasion, I hope your days are filled with abundant Love and that you make some good memories.
One more thing, thank you so much for your kind comments and messages about my first set of people sketches! I am blown away by the richness of personalities in the world (in my life!) and will continue to try and capture them. I wonder if people want to be named or tagged publicly when they are the subject? Please vote.
Carpe this Diem