Saturday, February 23, 2013

Gardening in Zones

Talavera in the Garden


I didn’t create this plan, but I am going to use it.

Jayme of the inimitable Tales From The Coopkeeper did.

I think it is brilliant and just what I need for my feelings of ‘how am I going to get everything in order for the spring’? 

I am going to take care of my 1 acre yard including all of the flower beds, my new tomato beds, and all of my plants in containers in zones.

Otherwise without a plan, I might be found napping under one of our shade trees in my Ross Dress for Less caftan.

Plus- and I know this sounds so weird to many of you- we are already having windy days in the 80’s.

So here is the plan.

Each day I will work in a certain zone and make sure that area looks as it should and has all it needs.

I am not however going to assign zones to certain days.

I am simply going to rotate zones.

There is a subtle difference there for those of us who are organizationally rebellious.

This makes perfect sense to me.

Zone 1
Back patio and flower beds surrounding it.

Zone 2

Esperanza Garden area 

(esperanza means hope)

Warer Feature in the Garden

Zone 3

La Brecha area and front yard     (brecha loosely translated means an opening)

Garden Art

Zone 4

Tomato and Zinnia beds.

Zinnias in the Garden

Zone 5

Sit on my patio at dusk and do this.


Monday, February 18, 2013

Standing at the fence

John at Baseball Fence

During a recent visit, while my husband stood at the fence watching our oldest grandson at baseball practice,

I spent my time in high level negotiations with this one.


(As he leaned against my leg),  he asked the following:

“Can we go to Burger Fresh?”

Me:  Yes

”Can we get bacon on our burger?”

Me:  Yes.

”Can we get ice cream?”

Me:  Yes.

”Can we go while Harrison is practicing?”

Me:  No.

”It’s cold.”

Me:  I know.

”Can I go play on that other baseball field?”

Me: I can’t see you if you play there.

”Why do you need to see me?”

Me:  I just do.

Then he found his next mark.


Saturday, February 16, 2013

My Treat


When my brother called this morning to say he was coming into town and could he bring Papa (our

father)  and treat us all to lunch at our house, I said of course,
but I’ll treat.

Within the hour my father stuck his head in our back door and said “Sis, here’s some money for lunch- I’ll treat.”

This was a simple meal folks- my favorite kind.


I ordered brisket, ribs, potato salad, creamed corn, and pinto beans from a local BBQ restaurant.

I bought a frozen peach cobbler from HEB and we had that with Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla ice cream for dessert.

And we laughed and laughed and laughed.

It was a real treat.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Do What You Want


The things in life that make my heart skip a beat aren’t heart shaped or red or in the words of a card.

They look something like this.

Me :(standing in the back yard talking to my husband)

”You know the gardener we have here this week helping me said he could build two raised beds behind the little house and wouldn’t that be a great space in the back of the yard because of the sun and our current beds are in the shade most of the day now and Valentine’s Day is the day our extension agent said to plant tomatoes and wouldn’t that be great and it’s near a water hose and I could plug in my IPod on the little house back porch and sit on the little house patio…”

Me: (pausing for breath)

My husband:  “Do what you want.”

Just like that.

”Do what you want.”


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Four Tops or Judy Collins?


Please tell me that someone out there in cyberspace had a lavender bedroom with lavender carpet as I did growing up?

Pair that with white French provincial furniture and you had the bedroom my mother created for me at the ranch circa 1965.

And while in that bedroom,  if you as I did alternated playing the Four Tops on your record player

(so you could dance in front of the mirror) with playing Judy Collins when you were in a state

of angst (wondering did he like me or did he not), then welcome to my world.

This morning I went back to that bedroom many years ago as I enjoyed my newly blooming lavender lantana.

I may have to prop a mirror up against that tree for dancing in the yard.

Y’all do that too, right?

Friday, February 8, 2013

Two Child Raising Questions

my girls
My Retirement Party    May 2008

I had no idea how to raise children.

I had no idea how to teach school.

The two enormous responsibilities I had as a woman came without a playbook: 

as a mother and as a teacher.

My husband and I have 3 adult daughters who are smarter, funnier, cooler, and wiser than we ever were at their age .

They are relentless and kind and someone you want on a sinking ship or in a fight or when your heart is broken.

My husband and I may not be wiser after all of these years, but we have been there, done that, done it wrong, laughed about it, and done it again. 

In fact- though we feel a little pistol whipped at times-
we’re not bad on a sinking ship or in a fight either.

For some reason today, I thought of two memorable child rearing questions my parents asked me as a young girl-

“Have you been sitting on the hoods of cars?”


”Did you learn anything?”




I did have a playbook.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Hacked Blog Comments



I recently went back into my archives to read old posts,

and it looks like my comments  were hacked.

There were all sorts of comments advertising medications and other various and sundry items.

Is this because I allow anonymous comments?

Does this mean my blog has been hacked?

Any suggestions or remedies?

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Daybook: February 3, 2013


Outside My Window

Mercy.  I have so much to do to get the yard ready for spring,

and I am running late.

Note:  This is the point where I like to act like the farmer’s daughter that I am

and I act like- feel like there is a sense of urgency.

As in I need to get my crop in the ground.

But first, I need to clean.

Millions of leaves.

Leaves with a sense of humor.

Leaves that laugh behind your back as you sweep and rake and sweep some more.

And so while watching the Super Bowl, I am making my gardening to do list.

Number one on the list?

1. Leaves.


From the kitchen our Super Bowl supper is

my husband’s brisket,

my husband’s pinto beans,

and salad (my contribution).

Our appetizer was guacamole and tortilla chips. 

I Am Thinking

I have become a scaredy cat.

I don’t like being frightened 
at the movies or watching television.

I blame my brother.

Growing up he was always jumping out from behind a door to scare me.

It worked.

I  Am Thankful For…  


I know.

Everything is a riddle with me.

I am reading


You are all so smart and talented. 

I am going in about 5 minutes… to watch the Super Bowl kick-off.

One of my favorite things to do during all of the pre-game shows is

ask my husband questions-

especially about the NFL players from the past who are interviewed.

His answers are almost in a whisper as he remembers their greatness.

I am wearing

it doesn’t matter.

I just watched the Sandy Hook Elementary choir sing America the Beautiful

to start the Super Bowl.



Friday, February 1, 2013

Dear Daughters: Ask A Stranger


Dear Daughters,

I had the opportunity lately to ask two complete strangers how they handle the stress.

Time out: about the stranger business.

You know that is how I roll.

If I am not complimenting someone for the million bracelets running up her arm, or asking who cuts her hair (the million dollar question!), I may also ask something like,

”How do you handle the stress?”

Stranger A said:   Prayer.

You see I knew that.

I know that.

Sometimes though when God can’t get through because of my delight in being stubborn and my ‘I can do that’ mentality, a messenger is nice.

Hence, Stranger A.

A short time later, as I was standing in line with Stranger B, I turned to her and asked,

”How do you handle the stress?”

And she said: Prayer and by not looking back and not looking forward.

Contrary to what you might be thinking, this is not bad news.

This is a manifesto for intentional, one day at a time living.

Isn’t that nice?

Now go find a stranger.

I love you more each day,



I am linking this letter to a master of intentional living’s blog-

Edie at LifeinGrace

Check it out-


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