Happy Birthday!

So, today was another birthday. I am okay as long as I do not focus on my age–pesky numbers anyway. Admittedly, I have some issues when it comes to getting up from a kneeling position. Is it age or lack of quality exercise? Yes, I am a lazy slug-type person when it comes to focused workouts. It should be enough that I live in a two story home with one bathroom–on the second floor. There are also thirteen steps to get to the landing outside, before the next three steps to access the front porch and entry door. Oh, and that doesn’t include the cellar steps if I want to get canned goods or look in the freezer. Steps should count as exercise, right?

Gardening also takes work, not to mention weeding the flower beds. We have had quite a lot of precipitation lately so there are many weeds, so darned many weeds. Sometimes, I can even find the flowers, and that is more than I can say for the peas I planted in the potatoes.

Anyway, in the afternoon I got to see the beautiful old farmhouse my daughter’s friend is working on. Oh, I could live there in a minute! I lived in the country until I was ten, and I have always missed it terribly. The original part of the house is small, but it has a wonderful addition attached to the main house. Sort of a family room style with a loft area that is large enough to be a bedroom. The loft has plenty of light, just like the room below it. It’s only downside might be the sloped ceiling. For me, it would not be an issue as I am short enough I can walk almost to the side wall before I hit my head. One of the few perks to being under five foot three!

The original house is stone walls. Not just a little stone facade, but actual thick stone blocks. You can tell because the window sills are over a foot deep. Oh, how my cats would love those! So would my plants, at least until winter when I have a feeling they would get too cold. The rooms are small but have so many windows, and since it is in the country, there is no next door neighbor mere feet away to block the light.

Later in the day, my husband cooked dinner: filled pork chops, mashed potatoes, and extra stuffing. I opted to labor on my birthday and made a salad for us. My daughter-in-law stopped by with a cute card and bottle of wine for me. My oldest son, her husband, is away at Army Reserve training until next weekend so I was glad to see her. Then, my daughter came in, and a bit after that, my youngest son and his girlfriend. It was nice to see most of the family, although some of the celebration was bittersweet since my mother has been gone for two birthdays now.

It is days like this that I remember how much she loved me and how proud she was of me as well. I keep coming back to the thought that I am an orphan now.  Time passes, and I finally understand why I would hear so many older people say that time seems to speed up as you age. I feel that pace now and remember how slowly the years seemed to go by when I was younger. I think back to when my children were babies and miss those times.  I remember the days I lost patience with them and was a terrible parent. Oh, to be able to turn back the clock and be a better person! How those times haunt my hours now.

So many times one hears that “you can’t go home again.” Physically, that is likely so; mentally, you can always return–sometimes even when it would be better not to in order to maintain peace of mind. I can close my eyes and recall the old farmhouse where I lived with my grandparents, the barn where I fed the baby chickens, the rope swing my grandfather hung in the tall tree while standing on the cab of his truck, my grandmother in the kitchen, the oil lamps giving light when the electricity went out, and the apple tree where I would eat my sandwich on summer days. I can remember sadly moving to the city, my mother moving in with a failed marriage and my new baby brother a few months later, and my grandmother dying less than a year after.

Birthdays are frequently a time of reflection, when one thinks back to celebrations of years past, happy times, sad occasions, all part of the life cycle. So, if your birthday is approaching, embrace it and think of the moments in life that were joyous, the times that brought you peace and wonderful memories. Save the bad recollections for another time. Rejoice in the now, and if no one else hugs you, hug yourself.

Blessings to you and wishes for a renewing rest.



Summer Musings

Midway through July 2018, I have yet to accomplish a small fraction of the tasks I assigned myself for this year. Front porch, still a mess; balcony no better than last year; garage lacks free space to park a bicycle; cellar has but a tiny path in-between clutter; and the attic, well, who wants to sweat through a hot enclosed space in the depths of summer? I have done no sewing of those upcycled bags to be made from children’s skirts. The skirts are washed and piled in a closet or tote. The jewelry supplies are nipping at my heels and begging to be constructed into lovely wearable art. Ah, but I am such an unmotivated slug!

I have dried a few herbs and started some tinctures, but there is much more to harvest– including tiny chamomile flowers. The yarrow needs to be cut and dried; later in the fall, the mallow must be dug and then dried. The mint is plentiful and makes amazing tea–which is much better than soda even with a small amount of sugar for sweetening. Spearmint with a touch of lemon balm is particularly refreshing and tasty. I have hopes of drying many more herbs and inflicting them upon family members and friends as Christmas gifts in neat, tidy little packages. Again, I have aspirations and dreams.

The garden is moving along, while I endeavor to keep Mr. Groundhog from mowing it down. The yard long bean plants have exceeded the poles again this year, and the cucumbers are in a race to beat them. I always have good intentions of getting an early start and leaving time to relax, but alas, I have failed again this year.

I did sit long enough the other evening to watch for hummingbird visitors with some success. There are two that visit the yard to sup at our Bee Balm. I also caught one sipping a yellow Jewel Weed flower. They are such intriguing creatures.

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Darkness has arrived, and it is time to contemplate that which has been accomplished. The laundry is dry, the bed is made, the fish tank and rabbit pens are clean, and supper is over. Tomorrow is another day.

Many blessings to you and wishes for a pleasant, refreshing, and spirit-renewing rest.