It will be hard to top last week’s shocking news! This week has been all about the great outdoors! Dan and Nathan took a spontaneous boys camping trip this weekend with his cousins and their sons, including a kayaking adventure. Nathan finished swimming lessons, and now has great confidence in the water. Dan said while they were on the two hour float down the gentle river Nathan took his shoes off and threw them in the water, tried to dunk his head in, and almost fell in once. (He was wearing a life jacket in case you’re worried). This kid has no fear!
Since I was faced with an impromptu night and morning to myself, I did what any pregnant woman would do: I ran to town and got ice cream! A treat for myself after walking four miles and cleaning the entire house! Saturday morning was gorgeous, cool and sunny, so I worked in the garden harvesting the many shell peas and snap peas from the trellis.
Two years ago we had tried shell peas for farmer’s market, but since we hadn’t worked the kinks out of our gardening system, they became a lesser priority and the thistles and weeds took over. Our crop was small. This year we have them in our large garden, well mulched and they are thriving! In case you haven’t had fresh shell peas in a while, I’m telling you they are little green drops of gold!!! The flavor is so much better than frozen, and I can’t even blink an eye in the direction of canned peas. I just lightly boil them until bright green, eating them in their pure form with a little pat of butter, and sprinkling of salt and pepper. Hunt them down at your local food coop or Farmer’s Market. You won’t regret it, even if you have to shell them yourselves. Raw is just as tasty and sweet as cooked.
Nathan has become my garden helper. Now that the plants are larger, the risk of him pulling up the tender seedling as he plays in the dirt is less. He is fully aware of where his food comes from, and is happy to “help” me for his reward of a fresh baby carrot that he gnaws on like a horse, or a pod full of fresh peas that he sits and picks out one by one stuffing them in his mouth. I hand him the full pods and he puts them in our bucket. If he loses interest for awhile, he waddles down the row and makes a loop around the garden, finding the gate and goes to say hi to the kittens. Then he comes back, plops on my lap ready for his next garden treat. One day he had been munching on a carrot and put a part of it down the hole in his little plastic slide, only to remember that afternoon where it was, coming around the corner with a mouth covered in dirt from his recovered carrot. It was pretty funny and cute.
The kittens tolerate his presence and he grabs them by the fur and skin with his sticky, chubby fingers and delivers them safely to my lap. Yesterday Dan delivered a delicious “treat” to the cat and her kittens in the form of a bird and rabbit. They were in a food coma, so we decided to let out the hen and her 11 chicks, figuring the cat would be too full to bother them. It gave Nathan some new critters to chase around. He’s so fast now, nearly running, he can catch one of the white hens by the tail feathers. He clapped for himself, praising his accomplishment. It was hilarious!
Our 4th of July was pretty low key, as usual. We spent the day catching up on farm and garden projects. Last night we skipped the city fireworks in favor of sleep for a husband that has to be up at 5:30am and a boy that barely had an afternoon nap. Monday night Dan and I lit a few small fireworks in the yard to celebrate.
Today is our anniversary. Nine years already! Wow! So much has happened in that time: we’ve lived on four continents and one acreage, had a beautiful son and are expecting another precious little, vacations to Mexico, Spain, Kenya, Zanzibar, Uganda, Morocco and Tunisia, a miscarriage, helped start four businesses in Sudan, Iraq, India and the US, lived in a mud hut, a rock house with a tin roof, and a nearly 100 year old farm house, made friends all over the world, grieved lost dreams and lost careers, evacuated a country at war barely missing a bombing, rejoiced over long prayed for desires, had $.98 and $50,000, lost all of our physical belongings, loads of counseling to prepare for marriage, life overseas, traumatic events, and life back in the States, had meltdowns, and holy moments of silence. What a ride! I’m glad I found the perfect guy to live this messy, wonderful life with me! I love you Dan!
And that’s the news from this outdoors-and-anniversary week on the farm!