Monday, May 9, 2011

Garden Charm



































Garden time came and it always reminded him of working out in the soil with his mother. There was a lot to learn from what she had to offer and he could almost hear her voice with some of her favorite ideas. He kept a very well weeded area and always enjoyed sharing with others. That was a big enjoyment with growing your own produce. He had toned down the size of his plot after everyone left the home and his wife passed away. There were a few things one needed to have through the season like tomatoes that he still planted lots so not to be in need. When they were in season he ate them for almost every meal. Some years he canned a few for cold winter meals. Many of the jars he used had been his mothers, passed down when she no longer could can. As a kid some vegetables were canned in large parties, everyone had their own task. He looked forward to these assembly line parties, a time when all the family joined in and shared the lovely bounty of the land.


One of his favorite canned foods was plum jam. As a kid his grandmother always made the best of jellies and jams bringing them each year to his mother. Her plum jam was made with Damson plums, so all of his life this was a treasured tree to have in ones yard. His mom followed her mother in preparing these wonderful sweet concoctions so he and his wife never tried it out much. As he was spreading butter on his toast he began to think about how special the plum jam had been to him when his grandmother came to visit with her box of goodies. She often told him how she made it special for him because he always talked how good it always was when she saw him. In his travels he stopped at a number of nurseries looking for this valuable tree to put in his yard. He hadn’t found one yet so figured to maybe get one mail order the next year.


There are a number of foods we pass down through our families. He remembered these off and on through the year, but never cooked much at home. He liked to cook on a grill outdoors and today being a holiday remembered his mom eating ribs cooked by his father every year. It had been a long time since he had made beef ribs, but today he remembered a smile spreading across his mother’s face as she chewed to get every little piece off the big bones. He wanted to ask her if she knew sauce was on her chin but kept quiet. Just watching her eat was a tradition where she hadn’t had to fix the meal and was served a favorite food. When he fixed them he thought of her always saying it was sweeter meat next to the bone. Sometimes she even grabbed one of the kid’s bones and made sure it was cleaned all the way off. Her smile stayed with him all day and he wished he had some beef ribs to fix.


That evening he sat and looked over the plot he had been filling with new plants. Soon a chorus of frogs began singing out their song of life. A few other frogs joined them, the rhythm of their calls going back and forth. He wasn’t sure he wanted to go in for the night there was such a charm in the air. Soon a larger than life croak came across the pasture. A tree frog had started its song to attract a mate. Soon a higher pitched call came from across the way and he knew true love had started again this year. He was getting sleepy but didn’t want to miss out on this nighttime serenade. He tried a few times to imitate them and hoped to have them call back. He went inside and opened all of the windows so they could lull him asleep. He drifted off and soon was out tending his herd in his dreams.


































20 comments:

  1. All the Birds are so beautiful and the pinl flowrs are amazing. Lovely post as always.
    Have a beautiful dayl

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  2. Really charming gardens.
    And photographs.
    Costas

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  3. What are those birds with blue feathers? Beautiful.


    And a beautiful story today. It reminds me of going home. I have picked up where my mother and grandmother left off with gardening and canning. I believe it is so important to pass things like this from generation to generation.

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  4. Love all the flowers! And the shot with the windmill in the background is so pretty!

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  5. Wow---Fabulous group of pictures, Steve. Where was that? It's gorgeous. The Tulips were awesome.... EVERYTHING was!!! Thanks for sharing such beauty.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  6. Those are some charms, gorgeous each and every one of them. Those flowers in the second picture are very unique looking. Are those a tulip? they look like them except for the fringy looking top edge

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  7. Beautiful floral images, especially that first one of the pink tulips. And you sent me off to do some research to identify the blue birds. Tree swallows, right? They're gorgeous, and you really got a terrific shot of them.

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  8. Lovely tulips and fun seeing so many pelicans together, Steve. I only had a single tulip bloom this year and last year had several. Also enjoyed yesterday's poem for mother's Day and the photos of Lily and yourself.

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  9. Some of the most pleasant days I have spent were days I remembered my mother and father. Mom canned everything she could get her hands on. There was always a big garden. She had plenty of flowers there too. Daddy made sure to show all the grandchildren, when they came along, how the snapdragon bloom would open and close like a dragon's mouth. After Daddy butchered a hog, Mom would render the fat into lard. What an awful smell! And what a delightful childhood I had. This is too long but I just want to point out that these are the things that are so important to tell children about. It is the way they learn who they come from and therefore who they are.

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  10. Your tulip shots are amazing, Steve. xo

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  11. Flowers and birds are two of my favorite things in the world. Thanks for making my eyes happy today! :-)

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  12. Garden Charm was a very fitting title. You also showed some nice wildlife charm. Awesome photos!

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  13. I was delighted by the pictures and touched by the words. I love how the memories are tied to the food that's tied to the earth.

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  14. Great photos, I love the pelicans. And the tulips are beautiful, the wind and rain have done quite a bit of damage to mine.

    I really enjoyed your story, some of my best childhood memories are of time spent with my grandmother in her kitchen.

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  15. Such beautiful photos!! Your sense of color and light when taking these moments in time is superb! The photos always have such a rich quality to them!
    Blessings!
    Ann

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  16. Beautiful ! Magnificent, splendid, Steve !

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  17. Been to Holland lately? Nice windmill there....

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  18. Just beautiful! And I am including the tale as well as the photos.

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  19. I really love your amazing blog, beautiful and interesting stuff!

    Warmly
    Marinela
    Short Poems

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Keep it positive and informative,I enjoy hearing from you!