Tuesday, June 04, 2024

Beautiful Summer Day (and STOOG)

I could write a beautiful post about putzing in the garden and dinner with several of the kids...but *I* would know it's not authentic. In a bid for authenticity, as I'm allergic to hypocrisy, my counselor says I've tended to allow too much access to my heart to people who are not responsible with that access.  I've been working to find a healthy level of authenticity.  In other words, if someone, who hasn't seen me in months, wants to know my deepest thoughts, I may not share them all. However, if I choose to write a blog, for my own spiritual well-being, I don't want to put a "church face" on it. I'm allergic to church-face.  Figuring out this tension has slowed down my blogging.  My counselor has said that my authenticity has most likely been helpful to others, but I need to be looking in this season to what is helpful for ME....me, me, me.... I struggle with all the self-focus. 

The truth is while I can show the fun photos, today was a day fraught with STOOG (Sudden Temporary Onslaught of Grief). Look at the things I'm learning this year. ::snort:: This is a helpful little word as it describes a condition with which I am becoming familiar. Pull up behind a red 4-Runner - STOOG. Decide to have a fire tonight - STOOG.  Oddly, hear his greeting entering the house - STOOG.  It seems a host of new memories arrive with each changing season...always changing, always the same. I had hoped this was a "first year" phenomenon, but I'm hearing from some who lost their loved one years ago that this continues. 

I woke with one of those dreams of which I don't give details. The awareness that Josiah is gone. The sucker punch as I realize all we lost and all we miss...and tears flow. Michael sleeps. GG eats and reads. The girls sleep. I head to the garden. 

The seeds, plants and weeds are not uncomfortable with STOOG. I am so happy the kids prepped the garden. It's a ton of work but it's a safe place to be and feel and remember and grieve. 

See those cucumber starts? They are my future pickling cukes. They'll go into the hoop house which may be ready for use on Thursday. Would YOU up-plant them to bigger containers or plant these little starts right into the soil in the hoop house? 

Since the peas and lone bean, we planted are doing well, I planted the rest of the row down the trellis with beans. I planted carrots along the outside edges of the bed. The greenhouse sides are placed over the seeds to keep the birds away, provide the greenhouse effect and speed things up. I remove them when the seeds sprout. 

Obviously, the weed barrier I tried the past years has been ineffective. This grass is horrible. I cleared out a bed that looked like this - forgot to take its photo and then realized I had another like it.LOL 

Look at the difference between the two beds. I planted beets, covered them as I did the previous bed, and I planted ONE zucchini in the corner of the bed. NEVER again will this family be force-fed 90 zucchini a day... Day after day after day. 

I took care of the chick weed in these two beds. This could be a daily chore. I am considering straw between the plants. Some think it's a waste of time. What say you?  I thought it would hold moisture in and may keep weeds down? 

If we were eating dinner at home, I would harvest some of the asparagus....I've been collecting boxes. This baptistry/garden bed has been used for compost. Weeds are taking over. I covered with boxes for now. I was envisioning branches and such in the bed....then covered with topsoil and some flowers or lettuce this year. We'll see what I end up doing. 
Dreaming of flowers 

I planted bush beans in the greenhouse and will see if the beans do better outside or inside. It seems most things grow best under cover in Alaska. My last garden job of the day was to wash all these containers, so they are ready for future use. 

At some point Michael came out and began mowing.  This involves the push mower, riding mower, and if we're doing it "right," the weed eater. It's a job. 

The chickens love mowing day. We give them lots of grass clippings to sort through. We really want to move them for a bit and reseed their yard. 

Michael was still mowing when it was time for us to go to dinner. Krista and Nolan meet at various places on Tuesday night. When we can, we join them. Jamin has joined them, as well as Carrie, a time or two. It's fun and casual. Krista is jetting off to Hawaii, Guam and Hawaii for the next bit of time, so I really wanted to be sure to make it tonight. Michael opted out as he was determined to finish the yard because rain is predicted tomorrow. 
Nolan and Krista

Some weeks we head to Anchorage or Eagle River. It's been fun to try new places, but tonight we were in our very own philly place. The girls have had a class on Tuesday night, and it was fun to have them join us. 
Allie, me, Stacia

Allie and Stacia went out for a quick ride when we got home. The sun is up until nearly midnight...long, long days. 
Stacia and Allie 

This has been a beautiful summer day. I feel good that we got projects done before the predicted rain and we took time to play as well.  And, yes, there were more tears than the "norm," but that in itself is also normal these days. LOL