Thursday, June 27, 2013

Drinking in the grace for the day

Me and the birds are up.  They are calling to each other. "Blueberries, hurry right up.  She still can't see them. Too dark for her."  No Name is knocked out somewhere dreaming of baby birds and isn't standing guard in a frightful pose.  Picking has been good this week.  About a coffee cup full daily.
So good with yogurt and cereal. 

Weeded my front garden this week.
  God made as many varieties of weeds as flowers.  What's up with that?

 Falls under questions to ask like: why mosquitoes? large black nearly carnivorous grasshoppers? poisonous snakes? Big snakes? Biting dogs? Poison ivy? Large ugly vines with BIG thorns? LOUD thunder that frightens--nope--terrifies BW and my Mama and me when it's followed by the a flash that makes the house appear to explode? 

Ok--so those are the ones I'm willing to publish.  My private list is much longer.  I am however willing to totally forget mine if God will forget--and by the way has promised to--forget what's on His list about me--the con side. AKA sins.

Hoping His pro side is a long about me as mine is about Him:

 Grace, peace, blueberries right outside my window; gorgeous fluffy blue, pink and white hydrangeas ; tallest and most abundant Shasta daises ever; coneflowers in groups--not just stand alone ones--they rival hydrangeas in my heart;
grape tomatoes on the vine
Duke Boy's fern bed
       zinnias on the rise
                abundant rain--which make the thunder forgivable
                                     sleeping in the bed with my Mama and talking ourselves to sleep.
Hedgie Girl's company on my journey.
       Hedgie Boy's accomplishments with wood.
                                                  Duke Boy waiting up for my arrival.

                                           Next time maybe he'll have a dip cone ready!

          Yes, life is very good on the Hooch.  Time to pick the berries.
                                                          Peace and love for the day.


Saturday, June 22, 2013

Blueberries, Hydrangeas, and trips down the Hooch

Gorgeous Saturday.  Blueberries fresh picked on my yogurt. Gardenia on the mantle sweetening my living room.  Double N companioning me around the yard while I talk to my hydrangeas. 

Next door, Rock Man gets ready to host a trip from the dam to our connected back yards.  The grill will fire up for their meal soon.  Safe journey to all --the Hooch is high and swift today.

Happy Birthday to little Emily.  She will party with her friends at the jumpy place today . She is 4 and the big sister to little Ryan. They both had rough starts at birth but who would know it now to see them.  Thanks God.

Tripping south later today to visit more family.  Safe travel to me and all others on the road today.

This family, minus the big guy in the middle who is deployed now, is who I'm looking forward to seeing today.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

the cat came back

 BW under the ottoman ..our little barometer.  Now lighting and thunder. 

Amazin cat story--this time, not mine, Big Un came back.  She is 14 and lives in the Valley with Ms. BF.  She was Mr. H's cat and used to accompany him on walks around the circle.  She had little to do with Ms. BF in those days.  Their cat/human love began when Mr. H. died and both needed some TLC.  Big Un even became a lap cat for Ms. BF. Then about two weeks ago Big Un wanted to go out at night.  Odd but she let her out.  Well, there was a storm and then no Big Un.  The neighbors staged a hunt with no results.  Then "the cat came back the very next day"  well not exactly .. This was after having to endure stories from well meaning friends about how she'd probably gone off to die. Well, she's back with another life in her and Ms. BF is over the moon.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Father's Day with my MOS

Clark Kent is staying in our guest room while hiding from the US surveillance.  Don't tell anyone.  Wow.  Man of Steel alright.  Very dreamy and fine.  My Man of Steel suggested we go for Father's Day and we did.  3D.  First 3D I've seen in forever.  Not as cool as I'd expected but the movie was intriguing.  Don't remember the last time I sat for nearly 3 hours without a potty break--and I shared a large drink with My MOS.  We remembered our popcorn bucket.  Hurrah.  I draw the line on taking it into the restroom.  Gaggy to see all those under the stalls when searching for an open door to dash in. Just need one or two more movies to break even on that impulse buy.


My original MOS

My Dad, Gene Erwin.  I remember Saturdays and riding to a haircut and bar-b-qued chicken with you in Fairfield.  Then of course a trip to Puckett's, Erwin's Appliance, and if I was good the 10 cent store.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Peace in the storms

Outside watching the storm come from Atlanta.  Lots of lightning and hopefully some cooler breezes.  BW and Double N lay at our feet for a minute and then BW wanted in the house so she could get under the ottoman and Double N cat walked over to her real family's house.  Maybe they let her in?

Peace and safety to all from the storms tonight.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Hot and thinning

Hot, hot, hot.  My flowers were eager to see me tonight but even more glad to see the water from my hose. Somehow the tiny zinnias that I transplanted are still living.  Thinning new seedlings is not a strong suit of mine. I'm always so glad to see all the little babies that it hurts my feelings to pull them up.  Last year I had some really crowded pots I tried this year to obey the rules.  I did not thin as many as I was supposed to--oh well.  I'm tickled the seeds even came up.  Seeds are allergic to me like I'm allergic to sweeping. 

I won't bore you with my sweeping allergy.

Pray for my niece in Colorado.  She has a fire five miles from her house.  Very scary

Peace from the Hooch..

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Does God have a score card?

A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush? What? If I could get my hands on the two in the bushes perhaps I'd get more than 3 blueberries to go with my cantaloupe this morning.  I know, whining, about the blueberries again. I know, get a net.  I have my reasons for not doing that.  Gardeners who plant willy nilly, meaning there are cherry trees growing up in the middle of blueberry bushes, have to suffer the consequences of their poor planning. There ARE shiny things hanging in the bushes, the birds use them to admire themselves while they snack.  Double N is lying on my chair cushions giving himself his morning bath while the birds snack on.

"Be good to me, God--and now!" Psalm 57:1 from The Message .
Bold admonition for Tuesday morning.  Great way to start the day though.  Think I'll try it.  Wonder if He's on the birds side or mine?

Peace for the day from the Hooch.
Grasshoppers love these for snackin! 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Double N and weeding

The following post will appear in the West Point/Valley Times News this week.  Sorry if you've already read it.  It's so good just relax and enjoy it again.  Peace to all from the Hooch.

 Deadheading my daylilies could be a full-time job.  Actually they are Duke Boy’s daylilies but I keep them looking perky.  Another life lesson in the garden comes from letting go of what’s holding us back.  After the wonderful, refreshing, thank you God for the rain so I don’t have to water today, my daylilies are looking beat down.  I’ve discovered if I cut off those dead blooms that the stem with new buds will usually spring back up and look for the sun.  There’s not much more I can say about that except it helps sometimes to rid ourselves of what’s keeping us down. I’m not advocating running away from home or not paying your bills….What about not stressing over those uncontrollable circumstances?  I’m not sure what they are for you—I do know we all have stress.  Some of us handle it better than others.
 Gardening helps me alleviate stress—I weeded two flower beds on Saturday.  Double N, the cat with No Name, who now is a part-time resident of my garden, helped me weed.  I semi-encourage the presence of Double N because I do attribute the relative absence of snakes, seeable snakes, in my garden to the cats in our neighborhood. Double N did get an evening of shunning from me last Sunday when I discovered a baby bird; dead, chewed, that was left as a gift for me after a weekend absence.  I know it was gift because it was near my chair where Duke Boy and I share coffee on Sunday mornings.  Hopefully, I made it clear that I was unimpressed.  My Chatt-a-while garden edict is: you may eat of the snakes and squirrels but leave my birds alone.  Actually there is a clause that says: You may frightened the birds with your presence if you notice them in the blueberry bushes but you may NOT capture and eat them, or toy with them, or use them as presents. 
Back to the story about Double N and weeding the back hydrangea bed.  It’s a very viney area with about three different kinds of vines that will choke the life out of anything if you keep your head turned for more than a week this time of year.  I’m on my little Sunday school chair at the edge of the vine convention when I see movement—yep, it was Double N.  I barely had time to get my breath back when while I was throwing vines in the wheelbarrow I saw something rising up—upon closer inspection I discovered it was Double N’s tail.  He was on the other side of the wheelbarrow and all that was visible was his tail.  This is why gardening for me is an aerobic activity.  It never fails to get my heart rate up.  I also get many opportunities to laugh at myself. 
Double N is probably here to stay even though I don’t allow him to sit in my lap.  He wants to but after Donnie’s last sneezing attack when he made that mistake, I decided not to give in to that comfort—on both our parts.  How will you alleviate stress today?  It’s a new day.  Rejoice and be glad in it.
Call the Pastoral Institute if you need help alleviating stress. 
Karen Erwin-Brown is the director of the Valley office of the Pastoral Institute.  She offers individual, marriage, and family counseling by appointment.  Call 334-768-2341 for more information or to make an appointment. The office is located in the Shawmut United Methodist Church in Valley, AL.  It is a satellite of the Pastoral Institute in Columbus, GA.  1-800-649-6446.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Rain, rain, come some more

Garden dance occurring.  Just had a wondrous shower. God has done my job for me for most of the week.  Good thing since my flowers were signing a petition to have me fired.  Nothing like rain for the garden.  I'm about to go out and join in the happy dance.

BW still under the ottoman. She's not sure the thunder is over.  She isn't a fan. 

Peace to all this weekend.  Prayers to those in the path of the hurricane. 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

I come to the garden with friends who dreamed

Happy June 5th!

I do have a little play in me.  Ms. M gave me some burlap.  Think it looks a little like Willie Nelson with a bow on him.

We had a lovely day at the Pastoral Institute.
  Celebrated Richard Robertson's genius at starting the Pastoral Institute. 
The prayer garden was named after him today. The birds were out in force to sing about it.

That's Mr. Bill Turner speaking. Another swell guy.  He was the wind beneath the wings of Richard's dream.
They are why I get to do the work that I love.

Peace from the Hooch. Thank the Lord for the rain and the night time full of groovy sleep.


Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Hooch bugging me

Buggy on the Hooch tonite. Hydrangeas begging to be inside with me.  Must have been hot today.  I was inside my office with a/c today.  Pray that it will continue to cool.  So much nicer to work when it's cool. 

Duke Boy gets home from UMC conference tonite.  I'll be glad to see him.  He's not just my chef, he's my ear, advisor, squeeze, coffee sharer, garden walk abouter, Double N fellow petter, and all around good guy. 
Love is good. 

Bluffton Antiques has a great assortment of flags for your 4th.  Got a great Betsy Ross.

 My Mom worked sewing flags at the Betsy Ross Flag Company after my dad came back from the war.

 I  only lasted an afternoon sewing letters on football jerseys when I was in college. 

No genes for sewing.  Give me a garden!

these are back and more plentiful