It is a delight to be the spouse of a hard working, joy-filled, dedicated man.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

I Know, I Know

I need to get myself completely transfered over to my new blog so that you don't have to come here and/or go there. But if I could just beg your patience a little longer? My actual post for the day, uh week actually, is over at It's_the_Dirt_dot_com.. I'm not going to double publish, mostly because.. well you don't need to know all my troubles do you Dear Reader?

And if you've got time while you're over there could you take a peak at some of my other pages? They are all in rough modes, really rough, but you could tell me what you think and then.... Just thinkin'.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Crazy Life of Dirt


Dirt isn't just a sheep shearin' lawn mowing man, during the daylight hours on weekdays he is a school teacher, aviation mechanics to be precise, at Clover Park Technical College. And sometimes, just sometimes, that job calls for him to do something other than lecture to his students or hover over them in the lab. This week they asked him to be part of looking at the aviation curriculums throughout the state of Washington and brainstorm how Washington State can continue to retain their claim on being the place to come for the best in aviation education.

I on the other hand am an interloper for the week, I snuck myself into his duffle bag and came along for the ride. The state isn't paying for me, I'm cheap, well my finance manager is tight, so I am eating out of a cooler instead of enjoying the beautiful dining room that this group is. Had I known my first meal that Dirt bought me down at the dining hall was going to be my last I would have eaten more. Maybe not knowing was a good thing, because as it was I was bloated to the size of the Goodyear Blimp!


This is their meeting room, I crashed it this morning to take pictures. Everyone has been really nice to Dirt's wife, me, I feel bad because I am the only spouse along for the ride. Ummmm other spouses must actually have important things to do at home. Me, on the other hand? I think the girls and their helper were glad to see me drive out the driveway, now they can actually get some work done.


This is Laura, she is with AJAC, the folks that put this thing together for the guvner of our humble state. She's in charge. How do I know? She was the one who gracefully started the meeting.


But before she did, I managed to get in a few pics of the folks Dirts hangin' with this week.


This is Reckless Raymond, (I got the reckless part from a story he told the first night we were here, the first night Dirt splurged and let me eat in the restaurant here at the resort) he doesn't seem reckless to me. And in fact is very nice, he is from the Spokane area and has two small children, so small that he doesn't know about The Fantastic Mr. Fox. He should watch it any way.


This is Bonnie, she is very sweet, but then she is from Texas, and it seems everything from Texas is sweet.


This is Alex, he teaches in Everett and is a fellow motersickle rider.


The place where this is all happening is a nice resort just outside of Leavenworth, I'll show pics of the town and surroundings soon, but for now just know that as you drive through town you suddenly have an urge to braid your hair and start yodeling.


Nice eh? What image do you see in the silhouette of those hills? If you can figure it out, you know the name of the place we're staying.

Dear Reader, I am off for another adventure into this little slice of God's amazing creation. Poor Dirt, he has to stay in meetings all day, but he gets juice and cookies and everyone is very nice so I won't feel too bad for him. I am going off to see some more wildflowers...


The hillsides of Central Washington are covered with these beauties, Arrowleaf balsamroot - Balsamorhiza sagittata. Not sure how fond the locals are of them as they seem to grow anywhere and everywhere, but they sure caught my eye and my appreciation.

Have as sunny a day as this flower and I am today Dear Reader, stay workin' in the spirit and not in the flesh, do so as if you were doin' all unto the Lord our God, and I'll do my best to be right there with you.

Ah, the irony of it all, now that I have a WordPress, Blogger cooperates and WordPress throws a fit. Aww I'm chuckling at that! Now I need a nuther vacation to work out all my new kinks and a nuther one to set up a web site for Vicktory Farm & Gardens

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Wart Doin?

CIMG8234_edited-1We're keepin' our heads down and pluggin' away at the spring work. Glad for the new head space of no opening day, I seem to be working faster and harder even, just wish my lungs would keep up.

North Garden will be turning into my cut flower and or bouquet garden. I won't be changing the name 'cause in a year or two it is possible that I might change it to something else. For now, because of the soil we have built here it will be where I sow carrot and parsnip seed. But I think carrots and parsnips could look really cool in an arrangement, so I don't think that is fudging on the rules at all, besides they're not really rules, more like guidelines really.

CIMG8235_edited-1 Because Dirt is such a wise man and has come up with the idea for us to have one central killer compost area just inside the pasture gate partitioned off by ecology blocks, we are eliminating all our little compost piles. The girls are sifting through this one right now, using Dirt's and my old sod sifter from when we were first married and gardening new spaces together.

CIMG8236_edited-1I'm a cold compost-er, I just throw it on as it comes, everything, I don't turn, I don't mess, so to keep the air that the aerobic microbes need to munch it all up, I mindfully toss in enough stuff the likes of this. I find it easier to sift a compost pile when all is said and done than to turn and toss, wet and fuss, and check its temperature all the time. Economy model mother, economy model gardener.

This particular compost pile was started when this garden was started and its true purpose was to cover the ginormous rock that lay on the edge of center in the garden. The rock seems to have moved, and shrunk, odd, very odd, Do you think I am so good that I can compost a giant rock?

CIMG8237_edited-1 It appears that I am, because this is all that is left of it and this wasn't even under the pile any more. Mind you, we had metal T-posts sunk around the edges of the rock, they held up palettes that held in the compost and they marked the edge of the rock for when Dirt came in with the tiller.

So Dear Reader, I am not of my rocker or rock, I know of what I speak! This rock has rolled, unless steel T-post go pogo stick at night, and in unison!

The area that was once a rock and then a compost pile is going to be scraped flat along with adjoining spaces, level with the major pathways. This area will become a table and chairs area, to set and ponder the flowers. I'm thinkin' I want to have the table and chairs bar height so that it can also be an outdoor work area to do up bouquets and such right in the garden.

CIMG8238_edited-1Here's a quick shot of my little tulip crop, these were just babies last year, most weren't large enough to bloom even and just tiny buds on one or two. I need to come and give them a little foliar spray to boost their nutrition.

CIMG8240_edited-1The lettuces and mustards are getting spread out this week by the girls, planted equidistance apart. I don't thin well, when I come across a seedling that looks poorly, I always find a spot for it.

CIMG8241_edited-1 Planting out the onion plants has been a challenge in that regard, it is hard to toss the silly little ones that most likely won't grow nice.

Oh by the way Dear Reader, I just teleported you out to Market Garden at the north end of the pastures down by the highway. Just beyond the tilled soil is the old pumpkin patch, we've decided to create a buffer zone hedge row sort of area. It is seventy feet from fence to fence and we'll come in quite a ways from the highway fence just to make sure it all stays, all our work, nature can then have the space between the highway and our hedge row.

A place where people, determined to drive while sleeping can fly into with their trucks and not make me too crazy. Or if the highway department ever widens the now well traveled highway, well be ready for it.

Fruit trees, nut trees, flowery berry laden bushes for our little flighty friends and such, we'll most likely get to that in the fall or late winter. Bet and I might toss some wild flower seed in there for now just for the fun of it.

CIMG8242_edited-1 Here's a better view of the onions, the first crop to go in our Market Garden. They could be bigger that would be nice, but they have been on hold a little too long. Don't know what this crew was thinkin' last fall when we knew we were going to come over sometimes our brains are mush.

But all is well, they seem to be bouncing back just fine, our onions might be on the small side this year but what the heck we've planted about a thousand so far and are only half way through, so we'll have onions.

CIMG8247_edited-1 Bet and I perfected the furrow thing, I don't often plant in furrows so I forget often what really needs to happen. The dirt, soil, needs to stay, be pressed a bit to squish out some of the air, and an impression made for the seed or seedling. I usually make little holes, equidistance apart for optimum space usage. But I wasn't into making two-thousand little holes by hand.

But pulling a hoe across the soil to make a furrow causes soil loss at the edge of the bed. So we used the outside edge of our hands to just press in the furrow lines. It went way quicker, the soil stayed put and all is well.

CIMG8249_edited-1 Thought I'd show you a bit of how we are making the beds in Market Garden, not too different from how I always put together a first time bed.

Bet and Dirt had gone over the whole area seventy by four-hundred feet, with the pto tiller behind Orange Tractor. But due to time and hard sod and precious worms and such, we did not opt to till it to a fine powder, not even close really.

We mark out the beds with stakes and baling twined, scoop the busted sod and the soil from the path areas, heap it on the bed areas and then because the sod is still fairly clumpy and in need of being broke we just put straight barn cleanings right on the top of the soddy soil.

That straw you see is well soaked in urine and lots of dung is in there so it will rot in no time and it will break down the sod. That of course makes for a bit less nutrition available to the plant so we'll be foliar spraying with manure tea a lot this year.

CIMG8252_edited-1 Next year these beds will be ready to handle carrots and parsnips. With all this work going into the prep of the beds and changing up the focus of the other garden areas some ideas have changed quite a bit, but heck Dear Reader, you knew I was queen of change didn't you?

Well, I got some stuff a callin' my name, I'd love to stay and chat, let my lungs rest a bit longer, but my brain has gotta get out and do some real work, But you're right Dear Reader, I do need to keep better records than I have in the past, it's time, and all this plannin' and stuff takes up a bit of writin' space.

Have an excellent week, we've got a pile of things on our wanna do list so we won't be wandering the streets and carousing this weekend, maybe next weekend. Dear Reader, stay well, let's stay tuned to the Holy Spirit channel instead of the ol' flesh and we'll get on down the road lots better together.

By the way, This was the post that wouldn't load from Live Writer and has started all this shenanigans with getting a dot com and WordPress-ing it. But I think the problem was with my internet connection at my house.

P1030911Oh, and, Wart Doin' is a grandboyism for, what are you doing?

Oh yeah, and another thing, I'm now found at Plain and simple, It is a WordPress blog on my own domain, looking forward to where this new step takes me. It is still a little rough but I thought maybe you'd like to watch my progess over there.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

I Ran a Test

In case you didn't catch it, I've been feelin' lousy, so I guess I hope you didn't.

I've been coffin' and wheezen' up a storm for a couple of weeks now. I couldn't tell if it was a real life cold, knew some folks who had one, or just allergies. So I tried my darnedest to give it to those closest to me, Dirt, EBet, Anna Coleen. And nothin' nobody has so much as sneezed.

Test over. Now for the cure.

And because I am a bit preoccupied (with spring) and already feeling super lousy (with spring) and can barely get my regular work half done, nah, lets say I'm getting about a quarter done and that would be generous, well then Dear Reader I'm ditching my hippy and I'm reachin' for the quick and mainstream chemical cures. Seventeen bucks for forty days of breathing, works for me. Even as we speak it's workin', I can actually breathe and I think I might get to sleep not sitting upright tonight!

Live Writer, my new favorite way to prep my posts no longer works for me, unless I want my posts to be three sentences long. Uhhhh that's what I have FaceBook for (and why I secretly hate it). So... I may be goin' Word Press, we'll see. But I think I need a degree in something or perhaps this process will give me a degree or two, of increased body temperature, it doesn't appear so easy as blogger, hope that means it is more reliable.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Oh For Cryin' Out Loud!

Just when you learn to say. "jelly" they change it to jam!

I've been using Windows Live Writer for a while now, digin' it for so many reasons, 'cept now it is givin' me a "timed out" message when I go to publish. Live Writer help says it's an issue with the server, to wait and publish later.

I'm hooked on Live Writer and I will only come back here to publish straight from Blogger if I absolutely have to.

When I can stop getting "timed out" you will see my latest post, nothin' special to wait around for and I don't know when that will be, so by all means head off to the park with great Aunt Lucy and maybe when you get back...

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Hand Wringing and Doom and Gloomers

If it is a sin to worry... oh, wait.. you may not know that, let me set my premise to this whole chat then.

In Matthew, chapter six, Jesus speaks a good deal of worry, he asks us if it really gets us any where and in a way answers that and then says to not worry because He will take care of us.

Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?
"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Worry and being anxious is in direct opposition to faith, anxiety is the opposite of what Christ calls us to, He calls us to have faith in Him, not in our strength, not in dates and opinion polls, not in our ability to fuss and worry over all things in life, but to have faith in His strength, to rely on Him.

Christ tells us not to worry about earthly things, clothes, food, friends, He even tells us not to worry about what would be terribly important, our testimony when we are arrested because we know Him.

Even modern science tell us that worry, stress, robs from us. It makes us age faster. Like Christ says, today has enough trouble of its own, like the poor, there will always be stresses, ones that we cannot escape, ones that are not a result of faith breaking worry and fear. But we are not to heap on the troubles of today and worry and fear our tomorrows. Worry certainly does not buy us more time and science backs that one up. Not because Christ needs modern science to back Him up, but interesting how the truth of the words of Christ do not need to see the end of this world to be plainly seen as true, right and good.

What is sin really, but to go against God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit? To live in and for the flesh and not reside in the Spirit, all of that, it is all sin. Sorry, if that just broadens the scope of what is sin and what is not, in your world. But to worry, to fret, to fear situations, is to not have faith, to not rest in God and take Him at His word, that He will take care of us.

Check it out, you do not have to become a breatharian ascetic to live a Spirit-led, faith-filled, anxiety-denying life. The Spirit leads us to eat and eat peacefully. True servants of His made cloth for clothing and tents for shelter. He calls us to be in company with one another, to crave to be in fellowship, to travel, to do good deeds of all sorts. But all that for Christ and not our very own flesh.

Might I go on now?

So its a sin to worry and be anxious and sin will always come into the world, we aren't going to stop it at the gate. However, if the one who lets the sin slip by them and causes a child of God to sin there by drawing an eventual remorse so strong that the Path-Paver would then choose to be drown for certain in the sea with a millstone around their neck, then why on earth would you desire to cause or stir up worry in another person?

Just wonderin'.

(Matthew 18:6, Mark 9:42 and Luke 17:2 in case you think I'm nutty about what happens to the path pavers, wide gate openers, uh, what they would rather have happen to them.)

So if you would not wish to cause another worry whether for their soul or for your very own neck, then why would you do business with a person who trades on anxieties and worries to make their buck?

Now I am not talking about not buying a safe ladder, or rubber gloves, or new brakes for your car, or vitamin C.

Remember, weavers, tent makers, moms, dads, travelers, neighbors we're all called to be His.

What I am speaking of, wondering about is, perpetuating the commerce of anxiety by buying into doom and gloom and "whoa is us", and "oh no the world is coming to an end" or at least a whopping good crisis.

I got news for you. The world is going to end. That is with out a doubt.

However, no one knows that day and time, not even Christ, only the Father. And no one is going to escape it no matter how deep their bomb shelter, or secluded their dwelling, or stocked their root cellar is, because it will end at God's hand, not a bomb, not a nuclear winter, not a carbon overloaded-sky-climate change.

I am not saying that you ought not to be prepared for the future, if you are headed for a trip in the mountains, by all means, grab your coat and put the chains in the trunk. But for crying out loud, do not worry and do not borrow trouble that is not there for you.

What business is it that these purveyors of doom and worry are in? You find them every where, selling nearly everything, everything but real peace and contentment. They will even sell you false mind-numbing contentment if you want it. They will convince you you have some crisis. They sell you themselves and their ideas, they sell you products to stave off the end of the world or at least protect you, or numb you, but mostly what they are selling you is anxiety, worry and a fraudulent product.

Y2K bring back any memories for anyone? A contrived crisis, where no one was reminded to rely on God but instead they were sold millions of dollars of "survival goods." The only business that hurt from that one was the sorry fellas that don't know how to be good hucksters: find or contrive a weakness, a fear; strike it; suck it for all its worth; and then move on to the next thing.

Some purveyors of panic are very good, very discrete, you can hardly tell what they are up to, it all seems so sweet and well meaning, and "golly, I was wondering about that too." No clear signs of selling fretfulness.

But then there are the others, that because no one calls out the selling of worry and whoa, doom and gloom, they are just plain bold, and the point is right there in their very own words.

Yes, they may be dressed up all cutesy in overalls and a floppy garden hat, or Victorian garb and dainty lace gloves, but their message of looming crisis is strong and unabashedly bold in print. "Buy our product because there is a crisis on the horizon, a big one, a prolonged one. To make it through you need us."

They say their product brings you peace.

With that one Dear Christ-Follower, you ought to hear in your head, your gut, your heart, your spirit, the sound of a needle sliding across a rotating disc of vinyl.

No one brings peace in a crisis or in daily life but Christ. And Christ says not to worry.

Then why are you buying into a product that is wringing its hands on the sideline with a pitifully knit brow and tears in its eyes for the Unprepared?

And low and behold nine times out of ten the product is faulty. Food in tin cans can not last forever, grain once it is ground will loose its nutrition, and many seeds do not last for five years, albeit some last longer, but some last a little over a year.

Live right right now.

Don't by a bucket of stale right living and put it in your freezer to pull out when the crisis hits. Most plants for food take an average of three months to mature, the unprepared ground another month or two to prep, given even that the right crisis hits in the right season, what good is it to bank on a salvation that comes four months after the crisis?

Look, I'm not saying that it isn't a good idea to garden and learn to save seed, in fact that is what I am saying, learn to listen to the Holy Spirit, make your food today, save of your harvest what you know you will need for the next day's planting, be an ant, be wise, be fruitful but do not worry. There is a big difference.

I'm not saying to be indolent and then arrive at my back door or freeway off ramp when your belly is a little empty. Learn to work your soil and your muscles so that you are not found weak and un-knowledgeable. But that takes daily practice, not a bucket in your freezer to be pulled out when the crisis finally hits.

And if you have no soil of your own or your muscles are not what they used to be? Find an honest business that is there to fill your needs, your honest needs, not your pretend or sinful needs. Hire them to do what you cannot, there is nothing wrong with that. The concept of self-reliance is not only quite far fetched it is also not how we are to live.

We are to live in community, relying on each other no matter how painful and irritating that may be. But we are to do so with honesty and forthrightness. Not manipulating each other's base fleshly worries and oiling up our panic buttons.

Being in a line of work or having a fairly decent smattering of skills that could play along with the current "green" crisis business, it is very tempting to join hands and participate in the nonsense that could make cash for my hip pocket.

To part hand-wringers from their hard earned cash in a barely honest manner is very tempting, "everyone is doing it", and good people are participating and buying into it, why shouldn't I?

Why shouldn't I? Because it will make my Father's stomach turn? Because it will grieve the Holy Spirit in whom I ought to be relying on to teach me better ways?

Because it will continue to cause others to sin?

And golly, I really don't like the idea of drowning.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Okay, I'm Leavin' My Comfort Zone

And I'm weighing in on a T.V. show, a show that took a long time for the Vicks to finally watch and a show that I still only watch once it is half way through it's season.

But Simon and Kara are knuckle heads.  Okay, yeah I'm no singer not by a long shot and I've not produce much more than heads of lettuce and even that is dicey.  But I like to listen to music.  I like shows like Idol and SYTYCD because they remind me a bit of variety shows of my childhood.

And Siobhan Magnus is an incredibly versatile performer, who is phenomenally styled for a girl from her era.  Not to mention she has a voice that makes my skin shiver every time but especially this week.

The way that this crazy zany looking tatooed chick is able to hold her body, retain a shockingly flattering pose while walk down glossy steps in bizaddo spike heels, all the while singing, no, spinning a web, she must have had a secret life of having gone to finishing school or had her start in pageants. 

Kara and her nonsensical "you have one voice at the beginning and then you have this other"  and she thinks that's weird?  It is what set us up, she's gettin' you all moody and sultry like and then bam she loads you on, takes you up and up and wham!

Simon and Kara are what? Jealous, worried that what, ah crumb I can't analyze them past they are nuts.

Hey, like I said, I'm no expert, just a chick with sensitive skin.

Hippy Hot Hut

I'm in!

Well, I'm in for a little bit then I'll clear out and let Dirt finish sometime around June. Well with this side any who. We've got some figger out on the other side.

Figgerin' and fightin'. It's the perennial problem when the finance manager is the builder but not the user and dreamer.

September is the date for the other side.

I'm reconciled.


When last we talked we had gone up during Dirt's spring break to pick up the missing pieces and come home and finish the glazing, but that far from finishes the whole deal.


Good ol' Patty Whack greets us and wants to know what took so long, Tulips Patty, tulips, a fantastic lunch, a splendid trip around an inspiring valley and a perfect but all too short of a visit.


But here we are now, back to work and happy, so happy to be working with this wonderful material.


Dirt is tapping the sheet down into place, tap, tap, tap, see the sheet moving down into place...


And the glazing was done, the twenty-ninth of March!

Two weeks later, enough holes have been filled and enough has been done that Dirt says as long as I give him room to work, I can move some of my plants down here. Others might just head to a cold frame or water walls, but... cough, cough, I'm not sure.


After supper yesterday, which we actually ate down here, the girls and Dirt helped me move all my fuchsias into the Hippy Hot Hut.


Dirt put up the crossy things and then put up a couple of pipes to hang the baskets. The crossy things will come in handy when I throw a little shade cloth over them to keep the fuchsias from burning.

They won't be in here long, I hope. Then I need to figure out where to hang all of them outside while they continue to grow. The crash and being in where I couldn't water them without walking them in and out has been hard on them, guess I shouldn't have been so eager to start certain endeavors before having the right spot to do it. Oh well, I'll learn that lesson for sure, when I'm sixty, or seventy, by then Bet will be in charge.

Well gotta get my coffin' head out of bed and go move the brugs and all the rest of everything. Maybe do a little seeding...

Workin' just a bit slower today, heck have been goin' slower for a few days now. But its all good, obviously I needed to slow down so I could do more deep thinking. Arencha lucky Dear Reader, you get to read the result of my brain matter sloshing around!


By the way, Ralph has noted that I managed to skip Colorado in my list of Arbor Day party state dates. Didn't mean to. But as I was clicking around the map on the Arbor Day web site I musta gottin a bit confused with all those square states down there Ralph. Duly noted and the date will be added and we will have a special cookie eatin' party, nah, we'll have Colorado Carrot Cake! in honor of a tree partyin' resident of said state!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Arbor Day Party

Hey, as I stated in an earlier post, uh I think the last one actually, I've decided on not opening on April twenty-second or any time real soon, 'cause after all like Connie said, I's the boss. Instead of an opening day with tea and cookies on that-day-I-don't-care-for-because-of-it's-knuckle-head-association, I suggested we still have a party and on Arbor Day, a day I do like.


(By the way, in spite of any thing I say in this post or others, no matter how derogatory I can get, if you want to, or already do, celebrate what is commonly known as "Earth Day" April 22, I'm cool with that, I might even eat those interesting blue and green colored roundish cookies without sugar you had your kids make for the occasion. I just won't be hosting one here or arriving at your place in a Prius.)

In Washington state, Arbor Day is this Wednesday, April 14th, sorry 'bout the short notice for a party. But let's do it! Cookies and such around two-ish shall we? Although I do have a nasty cold so if you have fragile health issues you ought to know I'm a coffin' up a storm right now, but I have masks and if you show up with a scarf around your nose and mouth we'll be okay with that.

And then of course National Arbor Day is April 30th, if that is a more doable date for you, let say lunch-ish, bring a brown bag, I'll have a cooler of cokes and such and we can picnic in any number of special spots.

015I'm sorry if my dislike for Earth Day throws you, Dear Reader, but I just can't hack it. The whole of it, the stuff that they promote on it or around it, in association to it, or the folks that conceived it and why they picked the date they did... I've tried in the past to like Earth Day but it has never set well.

I have, however, always enjoyed Arbor Day, it was a day my dad and I would often share and celebrate, and 'cause I fall more from that tree than the one who would say, "Let's keep at it so we stay ahead of things Lanny," we would often be celebrating it not quite on Arbor Day for Washington or National Arbor Day either, we often made up our own date when we had let the other slip by or had something arbor-ish to do way ahead or when we were without a calendar.

CIMG3623 So I'm thinking that's what I'm gonna do, only even more Lanny style. My dad would just say what the heck and we would go do something treeish or birdish if we realized we were off date. It was something we did, just the two of us. I wanted to be a forest ranger and I think he sort of liked that and wanted to encourage that.

Any who, I'm puttin' a Lanny spin on it this year, including even the whole part that I'm a little late for doing it up just right, that is very Lanny.

CIMG4465 Here's my idea: lets celebrate Arbor Day, here on my blog and at Victory Farm and Gardens. If you swing by in the flesh, uh in person not in a hedonistic sinful manner, any one of these days (give a ring though the night before because we could have plans to be out back or run to town for more party supplies) that some state or other celebrates and takes care of trees and birds.

Remember, Lanny's definition of party can be just about anything, balloons, clowns, cake, whistles, fancy punches are not mandatory, but can be nice if that's what ya got. So if you swing by we'll be partying, just please, don't be disappointed.

I won't be listing the states who's date has already come and gone.

Washington (that's me) second Wednesday in April.

Wyoming last Monday in April

Idaho, Montana, Nevada, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Nebraska, Iowa, Utah, Texas, Kansas, Virginia, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, New York, Connecticut, Delaware. Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire (and this year, National) last Friday in April

North Dakota, Vermont first Friday in May

Maine third full week in May (that's why I like this state, a whole week of partying!)

Alaska third Monday in May

Really not all that many days for Tree and Bird Parties but it'll do and leave us for a couple of chances for other parties, like slug or fern parties. We've got April 14th, 26th, and the 30th, then May 7th, and the 16th through the 22nd. Woohoo! Eleven plus chances to party.

CIMG3873 And again, why Arbor Day? And not that Other Day?

Arbor Day isn't doom and gloomy, it is a bright and joyful celebration of trees, planting trees, planting other things when you can't plant trees, putting up bird feeders, going for a hike in a national forest.

Arbor Day isn't about putting hidden spikes in trees that could kill those who desire to use the resource properly, it is about planting them and enjoying them for what they are, a tree, they are not reincarnations of my dead great aunt Judy.

CIMG3942 Arbor Day is about being protective, just not a psychosis dressed up to look like protection. Protection is appropriate, we are called to be protectors, of trees and land, especially those of us who know we are called and free in Christ.

No, we are not free to chop down whatever we think we need, but we also are not to be doom and gloomy and fear-filled and psychotically controlling of everyone but ourselves. Lording our knowledge or worse yet, pseudo-knowledge over others, determining how much toilet paper others ought to use, how many light bulbs each household can buy a year, what automobile, if any, a person can own and when they can drive it...

CIMG3691 So yes, lets celebrate God's creation and specifically trees and the beauty, wonder, and service that is ours from the trees God gave us and the little (and big) birds that inhabit them. Lets celebrate it on J. Sterling Morton's Arbor Day or really, any other day we find ourselves thankful for God's creation of trees and mindful of our stewardship responsibility.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Asparagus Beds

CIMG7935_edited-1A few more beds in Barn Garden need to be made up, We did these this week for asparagus. Anna did an excellent job of clearing the area of weeds including along the duck fence.

When the weeds get thick at the fence line it holds the rain water in the garden area instead of letting it go on down to the pond. So yay for Anna for being diligent on those weeds.

We are considering putting down some of our weed mat along the fence line to keep the weeds from coming back. No body likes weeding fence lines. Ugh.

CIMG8109_edited-1Dirt says my garden method just looks like a bunch of graves, that's why I usually try and make them longer than ten feet.

After the weeds were removed, I came along and helped her dig out the paths and build up the beds. Barn garden is going to become our perennial vegetable, fruit and herb garden. Asparagus will be just one of the stars in the garden here.

I'm definitely no asparagus expert. I grew some once but only got a small little harvest before the crowns disappeared and we decided to not garden in that spot any longer turning it into a lawn for the resident lawn ranger.

I will be building one more asparagus bed as another order of crowns is due in. Unfortunately I was unable to get my really big order because the grower that offered the crowns could not ship their product to Washington, not that their product was inferior but that in order to ship here there are some hefty inspection permits that the grower is subject to.

I did find another grower that has the same type of crowns and at a really great price but unfortunately the Hippy Hot Hut is taking up the funds at this time.


After the beds were built we had some whopper rain storms and the beauty of raised bed can be seen here as the water has made some mighty mud in the paths but the soil in the beds remains well drained and ready to plant.

The bed on the left was raked as smooth as the one on the right until I place the asparagus crowns in holes approximately two feet apart and then only covered them partially. Now it appears as if I was back playing WWll with my brother and we pretended this was war torn France with bombed up ground.

Both of these beds are Jersey Supreme, an all male variety. They are on two foot centers and I was able to get twenty-four in each bed. The newer Jerseys, Supreme and Giant are able to handle taking a small harvest the year after the crowns are planted. Other crowns need two years and if you start your bed with seeds, they need five years of growth before you begin to harvest.

I am now officially behind, well heck, officially, I was born behind and I have never caught up. I remember as a child my mom saying on Saturday mornings while we were working, doing things like dusting dustless baseboards, "Keep at it and then we can stay ahead of things."

For the most part, the ninety-nine point nine percent part, my mom was ahead of things, always. I on the other hand, even though I am genetically hers, haven't even been in the vicinity of "things" let alone ahead. So I guess it has always been official but now I'm re-admitting it. But I refuse to admit complete defeat! I never said that! After all it is my job to keep everyone back here in the "not ahead bleachers" entertained.

Therefore, I am, with Dirt's permission, delaying Vicktory Farm and Garden's opening, grand, semi or peep show. No matter how you slice it, it is delayed. Maybe when I get over some disappointments and actually have some blooming baskets, peas or some salad mixes to sell or give away, I will throw up the open sign but for now I'm in the busiest holding pattern I've ever seen.

Besides, and you'll love this rationale, April 22 is Earth Day, I hate Earth Day. It is Lenin's birthday. Not Lennon's birthday, although he doesn't impress me as a person either, Lenin like Stalin, yeah, his birthday.

The first Earth Day organizer picked it for that very reason. So even though I was going to open V- F&Gs with an anti-Earth Day attitude. I can't, it just doesn't feel right. Every day is God's Day and so every day should be a "get your head screwed on straight and take care of the things God has gifted you with," Day. Uh, that would include the earth, duh.

But it would also include using your brain and not jumping to ill conceived ill supported conclusions, for the green-beanies own fellow once said, "A lie told often enough becomes the truth." Well not really Lenny Dear, it just seems like it 'cause most folks swallow it.

Oooh harsh. And that from a hippy chick with a bran-new Hippy Hot Hut to boot.

Tol ja, you'd like my rationale for not opening on April 22. (I had randomly picked the day based on some other things I wanted to have the whole pressure of opening out of the way for, but Bet nearly immediately pointed out it was Earth Day,(how does she know that stuff?) at first I said "forget that date then." but then I thought I would lead my own personal counter-the-greeny-banana-heads movement, with tea, cookies and the hue and cry: "Com'on, Really Live, Go Persimmon!"

Alas it just truly is a bad date for me to pick to open to the public, groovy rationale or not. But we can still have a party, wait, lets have a party on... Wednesday, April 21st or how 'bout Arbor Day?

This is what happens, New Dear Reader, when Lanny spends the day sick in bed. (Long-time Dear Reader already knows I can go a bit over the edge when thinking).

Friday, April 9, 2010

Cat Fights Vicktory Farm and Gardens Style

This photo story was not posed in any way by any of the humans that were witness to these silly cats.

Besides, when has a cat ever done what you wanted it to? 

I'm not sure, but I think these cats need to know that this is not what I am paying them for.  Oh wait, they are rather entertaining.

CIMG7928_edited-1For those who need to know, the orange cat is Ranch Hand and the brown tabby is Farm Boy.

CIMG7930_edited-1This is the exact order of pictures.



All totaled, this exchange took eight minutes.

Thursday, April 8, 2010


What do you do in traffic?

We talked and laughed about the day and how wonderful everything was and then we hit traffic. But our day had been so good and traffic was, after all, inevitable, we decided, one by one, quietly to ourselves, to keep the wonderful day going. So we....


Took pictures of bizarre little cars, don't you wonder where the big fat dimpled hand is that makes this car go?


Tried to take a shot of the freeway pavement, I don't think I've ever seen freeway pavement up close and slow like this. Sorry it is so blurry. I wonder where they got all of that incredibly flat rock.

CIMG8051_edited-1 And of course we took photos of the traffic we were stuck in. And yes, people were staring. Not sure if they were staring because we were taking photos, or because we were driving a F350 with dulies in downtown rush hour traffic.


We also took some artsy martsy, com'on everyone says it the other way, I gotta be different, any way, some photos with interesting compositions.


And pictures with almost as much grey as possible. Flag ruins or sets off the monochromeness.


A picture of a place we've been, signs for other places we've been, books of the Bible that are our favorite and a favorite word, union.


More composition tries.

CIMG8072_edited-1I do like my baseball best on the radio. With a bottle of coke and some gardening to do.

I've been to one baseball game here. It was great fun, Eric and Steph took Dirt and I. The stadiums border the more industrial area of downtown. A favorite place of mine.

I didn't use to be a baseball fan, I always thought the game a bit slow, it would cause me to wander off and do other things. But because of Dirt, the radio in my bedroom was always on and it was most often on the channel that hosted baseball for Seattle.

I would catch bits and pieces of the talk shows the channel did and often baseball would come on instead.

It changed things for me, my perspective, I'm always up for change.

Dave Niehaus announced most of the games I accidentally listened to as I cleaned the house or put away laundry. I began to like just the sound of it, the melody of the game, and before I knew it I was beginning to remember names and know who Dirt was speaking of.

The girls and I would have our own names for players, some were endearing names and some were, I admit, rather contemptuous of certain whiny behaviors.

But now the radio station that is on isn't the one that broadcasts the game, so...

One of these days I'll be a better fan.

But for now I have a greenhouse to help finish up and fill.